Busyness Is Next To Godliness PLUS An Almost Announcement!

Let’s start with the almost announcement.  I almost think I am ready to sign up — make a commitment — to attend at least the dinner for the Ardsley High School reunion.  I have no interest whatsoever in going on a high school tour — what for?  Going through hs once was quite enough, thank you very much.  The picnic is on Sunday, and I don’t think we’ll be able to stay for that, but the dinner — seeing as it is so very close to our hotel, Springhill Suites Tarrytown, why, I think this is something I can do and might actually like, or at least tolerate in a way that would be more pro than con.  I have been following some of the facebook entries, and it is really surprising to me just how many entries there are, and how some people seem to have time to post many, many entries.  It also is pretty remarkable how many of my high school colleagues seem to have stayed in close touch with each other, which brings me to the burning question:  why would a reunion be necessary for these folks?

Still, I must admit I am curious, and also, the few with whom I have actually interacted on facebook are people I wouldn’t mind seeing again — I liked them in high school, but was not really close to them so they just dropped off my radar.  Again, I should remind the reader that thinking about my high school years brings back some memories best left unremembered.  But. . .some good things happened, too, and I did begin to get my sea legs (yeggs?) by the end of high school, rudimentary and tadpole-like though they were, notwithstanding that tadpoles do not do well in salt water for the most part.

So anyway, I have not sent Steve Jampol the check yet, but I will by the end of July, when the price goes up.  Plus:  my dear husby has agreed to attend the dinner with me, which is really amazing, since I did not attend   the dinner party at his recent reunion.  Although I have met some of his former classmates in the past — in fact, he had them to the house on several occasions and I was a gracious hostess.  And he has met my two loyal high school bffs, Amy Harrison Robin, and Michael S. Levine.  Also, he should meet these folks since I have spoken about them ad nauseum over the years.  I will be able to see Mom, and Max, Curtis, Jenna and Harry, and even Buddha, most likely, during that visit.

So that settles that.

About busyness.  There is a front-page article in the NYT Week In Review section — front page, which should have belonged to the Affordable Health Care Act, but, be that as it may, this article was written by, of all things, a writer.  This writer has noticed that when asked how they are, people seem to enjoy answering, “Busy!” or “Crazy Busy!”  That they take pride in and are gleeful about being busy, while at the same time, feeling put-upon and stressed out by the busyness, which is also gratifying to report because being so busy means they are wanted and loved by so many to whom they are indispensable.

The writer found himself becoming busier than he wanted, but also noted that he kind of liked being needed and wanted, just like his peers, and was disturbed by that feeling, so fled somewhere unplugged, where he could write in peace, and contemplate the stars, and hear the birds etc.  And get some real writing done for the first time in a long time.

Not sure what he is saying.  On the one hand, he scorns and/or feels sorry for and/or sits in judgement about people who are so delighted to be “busy” or at least seem busy.  On the other hand, he has experienced this feeling himself, and kind of liked that feeling.  What in God’s name is wrong with being busy or wanting to be busy or bragging about being busy?  I love being busy, and I don’t think life is passing me by while I wallow in busyness.  Why am I so busy and why do I like being so busy?  It’s because there is so much I want to do in life, and so little time to do it, so I want to pack in as much as I can.  Also, overcome fears and obstacles I have had all my life and try things that seemed impossible up to this point.  The juxtaposition of my beloved Dad’s demise and the declining health of my Mom with my terrifying diagnosis of breast cancer just propelled me into a higher level of action than ever.  My Dad always said, “Shit or get off the pot,” and I live by that philosophy.  It’s the crude version of “there’s no time like the present,” and “seize the day.”  This revisiting of my high school years, making peace with the me of then and even the people who contributed to making my life miserable — this is all part of the same thing.  Anyway, the person who made my life miserable was actually me — I allowed things to bother me that would not have bothered someone else, or someone else would have handled those things differently.  Going to Ferncliff to visit Dad’s grave this past winter on the first anniversary of his funeral was a chance to go past the high school, to go down Kensington Road, where I lived throughout my childhood and adolescence, to go through “the village,” past all the familiar streets and churches and even the nursery school, which it appears is still up and running.  And it was kind of nice.

Attending another reunion was also unexpectedly lovely — a family reunion at Mark and Sherry Grashow’s.  I had been avoiding going to these reunions for some silly reason, still can’t really put it into words or explain it even to myself.  Probably something to do with my Mom’s feelings about some relatives, who are mostly gone now anyway.  Maybe some vague sense of having been slighted at one time or another.  Silly to carry these grudges which are based on God knows what.  So I, who really enjoy something about holding grudges, it’s probably an inherited trait, am trying to stop doing it, because for the most part, I do not enjoy this.  It is obviously a defense mechanism which I really don’t need anymore.  Hard to let it go — there is something comforting about holding a grudge, refusing to see or speak to people for reasons I can’t even articulate.

Anyway — back to busyness.  I do agree that there are some people who say “busy” as a way of boasting or touting their sense of self-importance, and maybe some of these people, in their busyness, are letting life pass them by.  But some people really like having a lot on their plate for so many reasons.  You can’t generalize.  I mean, generations ago, people were very busy also — my grandparents worked very hard, all day long, my grandmothers were so busy with housework and cooking and laundry by hand and ironing and maintaining households — every minute of every day was taken up.  It was just what life was all about.  Perhaps the pace of life was slower, and kids were not overscheduled as they are now, but, still, busyness was universal then, also.  No one bragged about it, it just was.  But social lives were different, also – less leisure time, but that time was spent with family, mostly, because extended family generally lived together or at least in close proximity.

These days are just different, but no more or less busy than before.

Speaking of which I am busy right now, and there is so much I wanted to do today that I haven’t yet done.  Like clean out the bunny hutch, make and eat dinner, which cb is already preparing while I continue to go on one of my usual rants.  And — I haven’t worked on Mollie’s quilt for months, and MUST finish the MKSAPs by the end of July, MUST continue to train for triathlons (swam a mile today).

So — good night and good luck.

This entry was posted on Sunday, July 1st, 2012 at 6:27 pm and is filed under Attitude, critique, reflections in a golden eye. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

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