Tag Archives: deep thoughts

Theory of Distraction

18 Jul

I am easily distracted. Some call it forgetfulness; others say I sidetrack with little effort. I have given it some thought and formed a theory. No, it is not a scientific theory, for if it involved science, it would still be a hypothesis….and even that is being generous.

I have taken several brain-activity tests to determine whether my left or right brain is dominant. Neither is. They affect my life and thinking habits equally.

My analytic left brain allows me to memorize number sequences, see patterns where there are no obvious/visible/existing patterns, use words proficiently, be a painstaking perfectionist in my fashion pattern making; my artsy right brain is what enables me to be creative in my pattern making, draw with exquisite detail, enjoy a vivid imagination and exotic sleeping dream world, be inspired by the simple things like ribbons, fabrics, buttons, shapes, colors, etc.

I frequently switch between analyzing and creating. Mid-nerdy-sentence, a creative thought will strike me and I must stop talking and chase that train of thought. To the onlooker, I was distracted. To me, it made perfect sense. It was a momentary switch from left brain to right.

For example: A guest approaches the front desk of my hotel with two questions. First, would I print out a bill for them and explain the intricacies of tax refunds and rate changes? Sure! My logical left brain starts thinking through the best way to explain our tax and rate policies.

As I begin pulling up their bill on the computer, their second question descends. They are afraid that their pet has carried fleas to the hotel room, would I be so kind to bring a flea spray to their room as soon as possible?

My right brain’s vivid imagination kicks in. This time it’s a Pixar-style animation of me in a Monsters Inc. orange exterminator suit walking in slow-motion to their room, armed with Home Defense spray. As I open the door, the background music grows louder and more sinister; their poor pooch cowers in the corner and the room is obviously infested with fleas hopping wildly. I hook up the hose to the Home Defense spray and push the spray release. Looks of terror cross the faces of the fleas as they die mid-hop and flop onto the floor, where miniature x’s replace their eyes as death settles in. Music becomes triumphant again as I turn to see all the guests from the hotel standing outside the room with rousing applause, a shower of roses, and blown kisses. I smile to myself as I imagine some of my guests with their disproportionate Pixar-style features. Of course, dear guest, I’ll bring some flea spray to your room.

And already I forgot why I was looking at their bill, so I exit it. The guest asks for their bill again, and they can’t believe it’s taking so long.

The problem is not a deficiency in my brain that causes me to forget or be distracted. Rather, my brain is so advanced that it switches so quickly from left to right brain and back again, that my brain does not have time to log information in its short term memory. It appears as though I have forgotten. The truth is that I have yet to be able to control my brain. It’s almost as if my own brain is too amazing for me to handle. Scary, huh? It’s still a theory I’m playing with. I haven’t even thought of a good way to word my theory, which makes it obviously very unscientific. Even so, I felt the need to inform my general public of the reasons behind my frequent distractions.

In other news, I’m still thinking about my amazing carnitas burrito from Chipotle several days ago. Life-changing.

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100 is a big number

6 May

I can count to 100 in English, Spanish, and French. Most kindergarten children of average intelligence have learned to count to 100.

100 seconds is pretty short. But try holding your breath for 100 seconds going through a tunnel. Some can do it, others cheat. Either way, those 100 seconds seem to stretch endlessly.

In 100 minutes, you can drive from my hometown of Emmaus, PA, to the Newark airport, with just enough time to grab a coffee before getting stuck in line for security. I hope you’ll send me a postcard from wherever you’re going.

If you think staying awake for 100 hours is no small feat, then you’ve never been in my shoes preparing for a fashion show getting minimal sleep for 4 days. 4 days is a mere 96 hours, while 100 hours takes it to the next level: the fifth day of sleeplessness. I don’t recommend trying this without interspersed naps and superfluous caffeine.

100 days will take you from the shivery days of January to the windy days of April, and another 100 days will usher in the heat and humidity of July.

Not many people can boast of living for 100 years, but kudos to those who can. That’s big.

Andy Warhol’s One Hundred Cans

100 pennies will make a 5-year-old boy feel rich, and make his pockets all jingly.

$100 is enough to buy a nice coffee grinder, or yardages of exciting fabrics, or a sale-priced Coach purse, or an overpriced Walmart purse.

If $100 is mere pocket change to you, how about $100 thousand?! Still petty? Eh, I’d settle for $100 million. I mean, $1 million is impressive, but $100 million is 100 times better. Literally.

100% A+ is a big deal. Celebrate it, you smart cookie you.

Let’s pretend that Pongo is at the vet. We’ll take 100 humans, pair each human with each of the remaining 100 Dalmatians, and put them in a 100-square-yard balloon at the top of a 100-yard hill where the sun pelts down at 100 degrees. Get the balloon rolling down the hill at 100mph, and watch as they fly off the cliff and drown 100 leagues under the sea. Be prepared to answer questions by the 100 reporters who flood the scene, and hope you have a good alibi or 100 to clear your good name. (It was Pongo.) At some point in this fictional debacle, you might begin to grasp the magnanimity of 100.

100 is a big number.

So thank you for reading my 100th post. I thought it was a pretty big deal.

Undergoing

20 Oct

Remember when our basement “went under” with Hurricane Irene? Still hard to believe how much drowned in those six inches of water. Well, since then, every aspect of my life has been undergoing change of some sort.

I moved into Sarah’s bedroom after the flood, and almost two months later, I’m still there. It’s terribly convenient. Terribly. I can sew and sleep within the same four walls. But for a moment, please imagine the chaos that would/did exist in those same four walls when they hold the contents of two rooms – my bedroom and my sewing room. Yup, chaos. Introduce plastic bins from Walmart. Add random cleaning spurts. Sprinkle generously with coffee breaks. And the result (so far) is visibility of carpet. In fact, enough carpet can be seen that I’m considering vacuuming just because I can. By tomorrow, I’m hoping for moderate-to-complete organization of fabric. It’s a long shot, but that’s why the coffee pot is on. Oh and I got a new floor lamp for the sewing corner too. Sorta pretty much really excited about that.

The room in the basement where I used to sleep (and one day will sleep in again) has not gone forgotten. I have big plans for that room! Some changes have occurred, some are still ongoing. Already done: new “genteel lavender” paint job with “polar bear” trim, tile floors instead of carpet, white sheer curtains instead of closet doors, new black dresser, new black bookshelf, new dark wood night stand, new set of drawers at the end of my bed, ALL-plastic waterproof storage, big framed horse print for my horse-crazy lil sis, new black and white lamp. To be done: new curtains for my window, new wall art to cover the electrical box that my bedroom has been blessed with, photos and drawings and other forms of art to frame and hang, new rugs to make out of super-awesome fabric, new slippers so I can actually walk on the tile floors.

I do not currently have pictures of any of these works in progress. I don’t even think I have “before” pictures. But sometime I hope to get some “after” pictures posted here. A reminder from readers would not be deemed unnecessary…jus’ sayin’.

Even at work at the hotel, things are changing! Busy summer season with a bunch of families and unruly children running the hotel halls is OVER! It’s “just” a bunch of business people, construction people, “lifers” (aka long-term guests), other miscellaneous people…. generally people who know the hotel biz and don’t ask a million questions or demand extra pillows or complain about credit card authorizations. It’s nice, I will admit. In fact, this month marks a year that I’ve been working at the hotel! Very exciting! I still love working there! I can’t remember a single day I’ve dreaded going to work there!

Everyone at some point will undergo changes in their life. Adapt. Don’t go under and drown. Even if it is only six inches of water.

Add water. And sugar.

30 Aug

Life gave me several lemons lately. Irene gave us water. God provided the sugary-sweet blessings! Here’s a recap of the resulting lemonade. May it be the only batch we make!

Lemons: Lost power on Sunday; basement flooded on Sunday; many personal possessions were destroyed beyond salvage-ability by the water; all 6 of us Angers are living in a one-floor/five-room arrangement; this night owl has to share her night perch with 5 sleeping/sleep-talking/snoring morning people.

Water: Hurricane Irene filled our finished basement (aka all of our bedrooms) with 6″+ of water. Do I really need to expound on that more?

Sugar: We got to spend lots of family time together! In fact, I think my best memory of Sarah Jeanie’s week-long visit from Wisconsin was the laughter-filled breakfast we had as a family on Sunday morning while water poured into our basement. God used neighbors and people from church to provide us with generators, shop vacs, storage bins, trailer for storage, man-power for removing furniture and carpet, and girl-power for helping me clean my room (which I’ve been putting off since “spring cleaning”). The electric power returned on Sunday afternoon instead of Thursday like many people are being told to wait for. The hot water heater was fixed on Monday morning, and hot showers have ensued since!

Every time I try to complain about the “flood” that we experienced on Sunday, I end up listing things I am thankful for instead. It truly could have been so much worse, but it wasn’t. Thank God for His care for us and for good friends who gave up their Sundays to help us!!

Light Reflectors

12 Jan

How many times have I driven past those two-inch-wide reflective markers on the curves of Route 100 and hardly noticed them?

Tonight I drove home in the snow. It was about 2 inches at the hotel when I left, and at home, the accumulation was already 4 inches. During one section of my drive home, there were no street lights. The windshield wiper blade was not getting all the snow off my window. And I could barely see more than 10-15 feet in front of my car. I tried to just follow the tire tracks in the unplowed road, but it was difficult to differentiate between the tire tracks that were ON the road and the tire tracks from the cars before me that had veered OFF the road.

What kept me on the road? The reflective markers. I could usually see one at a time. And as I would pass the one I could see, another one would blink its reflectiveness at me. From such reflective blinks, I found my way home.

It also helped that I was going about 20mph. (I only slid around once on a totally unplowed section of road that was an inclined curve. I’m blaming the road for that slip and letting my car off the hook.)

But I thought about those light reflectors.

They needed the light source of my headlights. But even my headlights could not reach very far.

This isn’t going to be a perfect analogy, but listen anyway! We are all like I was, driving with poor visibility and only reflective markers to guide me home. In life, our poor visibility is caused by our shortcomings, our lack of faith, or maybe just a trial that God has allowed in our lives. The headlights are like the light of God’s Word. It illumines our pathway, but not the whole path. Just the part that we must tread upon soonest. The reflective markers are the promises that God gives to us. But we won’t see those promises unless we “turn on” the light of God’s Word in our lives. Make sense?

So uh….what’s new?

1 Jan

I got asked this question today. It’s so difficult to answer. Um. What’s new…. My car? My job? My socks? My unfortunate zit? Ooooh I know! The YEAR! That will be my response from now until the year gets old. Which is usually when I finally remember to write 2011 instead of like, ya know, 2008. (I seriously had a moment today when I thought the year was 2008. I quickly snapped out of it.)

I celebrate every new DAY, so celebrating a new YEAR wasn’t such a big deal. It’s all the same. Stay up late, eat jelly beans, do something fun, do something productive, greet new day/year, do more fun and productive things, curl up in a blanket, eat more jelly beans, brush teeth, zonk out. *yippee*

This year for New Year’s Eve I worked on a puzzle with my two sisters. The excitement was when I found a stinkbug on my jelly beans.

Last year I watched a movie with my sister, my bestie, and her sister. The excitement was when we actually got sleep.

The year before last year, I watched several movies with a couple friends until we finally zonked out at 7am. The excitement was that not exactly everyone zonked out, and the only wakeful friend started a facebook account for me.

The year before the year before last year, my family tried staying awake, but they all pretty much dozed off at some point. The excitement was painting my brother’s toenails bright red.

Like ten years ago, I was in the Czech Republic with my family to celebrate Christmas and New Years with some friends. The excitement was drinking sparkling apple juice (Robby Bubble, to be exact).

The year before like ten years ago, was the infamous Y2K, for which we went to my mom’s parents. The excitement was sitting on the couch, doing word search puzzles, eating peanut butter swirl ice cream, waiting for the world to end.

I can’t wait for next year, 2012, when the world is supposedly going to end. I cannot wait to prove those silly Mayans wrong. The soonest that the world could possibly end would be 2018, after the 7 years of tribulation.

But I’m no prophetess.

I have no resolutions to get anything done or to make myself better. However, I’d better start now.

*cricket, cricket*

19 Sep

Such a noise usually indicates an awkward silence. But imagine how awkward the silence would be if the silence was totally silent? That is to say, without the cricket at all. That happened to me the other night. I was almost cricket-less.

I sleep in the basement, in the corner of my room, in the corner of the basement. At the head of my bed is the utility box (or whatever it’s really called) that houses the switches to power everything in the house. Such a placement has led to a few humorous or awkward occasions during which I wished I had cleaned my room BEFORE the repairman came. But that conjures up different stories than the one I’m telling.

This is about a cricket. Actually two crickets. Somehow, every summer, crickets find their way into the portion of the wall that houses the utility box. And there they live and chirp all night long. I’ll remind you…..this is at the head of my bed. Mere inches from where my eyes should be closing in blissful sleep.

On August 4th (I looked it up), I sent out a late-night twitter, “There is a very vocal cricket chirping in the wall, mere inches from my head. Maybe i should teach him a lullaby so i can get some sleep.”

We tried killing them with ant spray, then again with wasp spray. Still. Every night, long after the lights were out, when I crawled into bed, they would begin their duet.

First there was a long, almost-shaky chirp from a cricket with a deep “voice.” It honestly sounded like it was dying. *cri-i-i-iiii-i-ck-k-k-et*

Then a second, more confident one. *cri-i-i-i-cket*

And before too long there was a second cricket chiming in. The second one was higher pitched than the first, possibly a younger cricket.

It used to annoy me to no forseen end. Then suddenly one night, I didn’t hear the crickets. I laid in the enveloping silence, straining to hear even one chirp. The silence was almost unnerving. I tried laying on my back. Then on my side facing the wall. Then I flipped my pillow to the cool side. Then I lay perfectly still. Just when I thought I was going to explode from the deafening silence…..

*cri-i-i-i-i-iii-i-i-i-ck-k-k-k-et*

*cri-i-i-iii–ck-k-et*

And the duet began once again.

Every night since then, I have looked forward to my nightly serenade. The older cricket is Gerald and the younger is Jehu. But about two nights ago, I stopped hearing the crickets altogether. I know this happens at the end of every summer. But this time it’s extra-sad. Probably because I named them.