Today was a good day, although my mind would have me thinking otherwise.
It was what I consider a “noodling” day, where things get done, but in a non-linear, roundabout way. My brain hates these days. They don’t make sense! What’s going on?! There should be structure, and planning, and the crossing off of lists. Instead I answered some emails, paid a bill, returned a phone call, kissed the cats, and bought milk and oranges at the market.
I noticed the guy wearing the brand new superman t-shirt. He looked happy. On my way home I stopped and, leaving my groceries on the curb, I took pictures of graffiti. It dawned on me with surprise that I was enjoying myself, and that this might be a good use of my time. I know how to noodle my way through a day, but this may have been the first time I haven’t felt guilty about it.
One of the curses of self-employment is that there is always work to be done, right there in front of me. No bell rings to say that school is over and it’s time to go home for the night. There isn’t a commute to mark the beginning and end of my workday, or that relaxed feeling that I did the best I could and now I’m off for a few hours.
And there is no boss: there’s just my brain, whose default setting is permanent high alert, watching for danger and deadlines. My brain is a bad boss with a puritanical sense of priorities, who thinks Sisyphus was gainfully employed just because he was working so hard.
Well. I am taking back the “self” in self-employment. I’m going to go listen to Laurie Anderson. And then – I’m firing my boss.
I don’t know about your brain –
but mine is really bossy.
I come home…
and I find all these messages
on wrinkled up scraps of paper
and they say things like:
Why don’t you get a real job?
or: You and whose army?
or: Get a horse.