Wednesday, May 4, 2011
Happiness Is A Stupid Hobby
A few days ago my sister started nagging me to join a new website. She's always nagging me to do something, like make lemon bars or decoupage my toilet, and usually I ignore her because the things she's good at just set me up for total failure. Like singing, and decorating, and being a Lutheran. I mean, if there is one faith that should be fail-safe, it's Lutheranism. You must be a total dummy or a black-hearted heathen if you fail at that one.
At first I played dumb like I didn't know what she was talking about. I could see the website had something to do with posting pictures found on all corners of the internets, and I pretended like I thought you had to draw the photos yourself--something I could never do, which you know if you saw my post yesterday. She was not amused--she usually isn't--and she persisted, and my mom persisted, and then my brother-in-law made a comment about how I shouldn't join because he hadn't seen her in hours, he couldn't get her off the site, and for some reason that pushed me over the edge, rather than frightened me off like it would have a sane person who doesn't want to live their life staring at a computer screen.
So I have joined pinterest, and not even 24 hours later I have begun to think and dream in pinboards. This must be how my husband feels when he gets a new videogame. Cloudy headed and like a crack addict. On Facebook, my mom was like "yay!" and I was like, "damnit!" and also like,"I fell asleep thinking about pins. I don't remember what Indy looks like."
I'm not kidding, I really don't remember what Indy looks like. Tell me if you see her. I may or may not need rehab.
I have a tendency to get completely absorbed in things like this. You could call them obsessive periods, but personally I find that ungenerous. I prefer to call them passionate periods. We are all artists here. I saw a Tori Amos concert and spent the next maybe six months (ok maybe more) listening solely to Tori and downloading bootlegs and watching her youtube videos and reading her memoir and studying her lyrics. I spent so much time on this that I now find it difficult to have thoughts that aren't Tori Amos quotes. Why do I crucify myself? Maybe I'm a mermaid. I did it again with Firefly, and then with Battlestar Galactica.
And once, perhaps the most glorious time, I believed I was the first person to create a myspace account for Harry Potter. I had recently finished the fifth Harry Potter book, I had spent hours and hours on fan websites, and pretending to be Harry Potter to delusional teenage girls on the internet seemed the next logical step. Honestly, I only started it to kind of tease Carlton and Lucy, who were young at the time, and because I thought it would be fun to be myspace friends with Harry Potter. Only later would I discover that what I was doing is called "rp'ing" (which is short for role-playing, not raping), and that by engaging in it, I had transcended to a new level of pathetic from which there would be no return.
No. Actually, it was awesome. Those were wonderful times.
I won't tell you how far I took this Harry Potter thing, only that I met the person whom I call my comedic soul mate late one night at a myspace 'party'. We spotted each other across the comments section and sparks flew. Within minutes, her Tom Riddle and my Harry had them all in stitches. We killed that room. We avada kedavra'd it. I do not find it shameful that being so hilarious at this party on the comments boards with strangers is the highlight of my life to date. I find it fantastic.
(Tommy and I are still internets friends to this day. You should know that everyone who rp's Hermione is kind of a whore. I don't know why, this is just the law of the universe. Stick with the Ginny's. They're good stock.)
I suppose I could feel guilty about these things, but I don't. When I look back at these times in my life, I see that they were some of my happiest periods. I was so completely absorbed by something that I spent less time worrying about anything. Although they do leave me in a kind of torpor, once they go. For instance, every Friday night at 10:01 pm, Supernatural ends and I forget my reason to live.
I'm reading Gretchen Rubin's "The Happiness Project", and she talks about the importance of finding time for play. Also the importance of doing things you are passionate and enthusiastic about. Also the importance of making off-color jokes about Harry and Tom and their "Chamber of Secrets". My point is this: if you don't hear from me in awhile, if my kids call you saying there's an unwashed woman on their couch who keeps squinting at them and saying "Who are you? Who is that there?", please drive to my home and pry my fingers off lover laptop and pretty pinterest.
In the mean time, I'm going to be pretty content.
Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go post my children's pictures on pinterest. They're so quiet there, and smiling. Pinterest children never complain.
Pretty, pretty pinterest children.