7 Boring Takes

7 Boring Takes August 18, 2017


Friday! Takes!
Didn’t realize it was Friday. Haven’t known what day it is all week long. Even when I look at a calendar it doesn’t register at all. I suppose that will all change next week when the reality of work hits me like a brick. Or maybe I will be able to float along on a cloud of unknowing. That would be so great.

This hasn’t been the holiday I wanted, but rather the holiday I Needed. I love leaping up and driving to Texas so much. It’s my favorite thing. I love having a month stretch out before me where the biggest decisions in life are what to eat and whether or not to make the bed in the morning. Truly, that is the objectively better holiday. But I just couldn’t stand up enough to pull it off, as I’ve said over and over. You have to be in some kind of reasonable place in order to prepare for that kind of rest. And able to deal with all the stuff you let fall while you’re gone when you get back. You can’t just pull back up into your drive way and go back to work. So many things have to be faced for that to be possible.

So this was the holiday I needed–a few days to lie completely flat and try to recover from the relentless onslaught of reality, a few days to put the house in order, a few days to face down my desk, a restful week away, and then a few days to restore the house to sanity and face down those projects that have been hanging over my head for upwards of five years. Oh, and Matt insisted that we paint the porch.

This, therefore, might be the first time I will start school without the deep wellspring of panic rising up in my throat. I’m always starting out trying to convince myself that Good Enough is totes fine, and I will definitely cope with all the stuff I didn’t do during the summer as the school year goes on. But that never happens. NEVER HAPPENS. And so I’ve accumulated years of tasks that I just never got to. They hang over my head and mock me all the time, leering at me when I try to stare into the future or sit down in a chair to enjoy the present.

But, get this, I did them. I did the things I was supposed to do. Enough of them, anyway, that I don’t need to creep around avoiding my own psyche. So next week we can start school, fully two weeks before the online year starts, which gives us a good measure of time to settle into a routine and remember how to wake up before nine.

Although, writing it out does completely bore me. Spent a lot of time this week arguing with Matt over what is, or isn’t, boring.
Racism is boring, I insisted, just like talking about homeschooling.
Racism is not boring, he parried. It’s a theological matter and therefore interesting. All the ways the human person twists itself into idolatrous self love is interesting and should be thought about.
I’m not saying we shouldn’t think about it, I said, I’m just saying it’s boring. Sin is boring and stupid. It never gets more interesting.
That’s not true, he said, it is interesting. Theology is interesting.
Sort of, I said, but I’d rather read a cookbook than read theology.
That’s terrible, he said.
Yes I guess it is, I said.

I didn’t mean to say, before, that it’s bad to start out a school year at Good Enough. If Good Enough is all you can muster, that’s all you can muster. You shouldn’t feel guilty about it. I am always making the perfect the enemy of even showing up at all. Although, age and experience are beating that inclination out of me.

I used to not do anything because I knew I couldn’t do it perfectly. Now I do all the things. But I feel bad about their imperfections. I fret and feel guilty and sad. So it’s really a treat to be able to do something properly once in a while, to know that I was prepared before hand, that I allotted a realistic amount of time to its completion, that the result wasn’t going to necessarily be completely mucked up because I was just flying by the seat of my pants. That experience is almost better than Christmas (…cough, of course it would be, I hate Christmas).

I found an entrancing podcast this week. Bitterly I was searching for something because all my regulars hadn’t put up anything new, when I happened upon Revisionist History with Malcolm Gladwell. I must have been quite desperate to even click, because the word ‘revisionist’ gives me hives, but I figured, oh, whatever, I can always click away. I started out with the one on McDonald French fries and was hooked. It’s an elegantly crafted podcast, and I spent the whole time wishing that Christians could produce this level of artistry.

Complained to Matt about it, again.
What would have to happen, he said, was for the secularist to be creatively in charge, and only have a Christian on as an advisor to check for facts. So, take the life of David, which would make a great miniseries. You give the text to the godless unbeliever, you let them imagine the whole thing and write up the script, but then you let the christian come in and have real editorial control over the content, so it doesn’t go off into the fanciful realm of historical and biblical error. But you don’t let the christian have creative control.
(Ok, ok, Matt didn’t actually use the word ‘fanciful.’ I added it in for myself as he was talking.)

So there you are. We had a really good holiday and are ready to leap back into the fray. I’ve missed Good Shepherd immensely and am even vaguely looking forward to all the tasks that regular life requires. But first I have two more days off in which I will go and procure a waffle maker. Have a lovely day and go check out less boring Takes.

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