Nothing breeds contemplation like commuting.
I’ve been taking the train to London for over three years now – an hour each way – and once music and the Metro became boring, the only thing left to do was stare out of the window and think (I can’t sleep on trains). Most of the time I think about things that don’t exist, like what it would feel like to be a CEO rather than an admin worker, or precise physiological reactions of the guy who spiked my drink if I hit him repeatedly in the face with a broken bottle, or how my unicorn would look at me if I walked past him on the beach with a perfect belly and finished tattoos. Then sometimes I think about deeper things; whether I’ll make a difference in the world, what will I think when I look back on my life, the precise chances of dying from a rogue blood clot at any random moment in time.
I’m not a fan of philosophising over existential issues; it’s much better to go out and do things without overthinking them, otherwise you’ll feel like you’ve already done most of the work and end up writing whiny blog posts about how difficult life is. But I’m too high-strung to meditate so the only thing left to do for two hours every day is to let my brain take over and fire off neurons in ten billion paranoid directions at once (incidentally I just googled the phrase “fire off neurons” and found this video which is pretty cool).
Sometimes it’s fun to mentally have an out-of-body experience and float above the train pulling into London Bridge station and London itself. One of the strangest realisations is that all the intense emotions, from euphoria to near-suicide are experienced by millions of people at the same time. They feel like they change the fabric of time but they’re just a storm in a meat-and-bones teacup. They are overwhelming but unnoticed by anyone else because we still keep a bored-and-slightly-pissed off facial expression and that paradox is scary.
I wrote the above paragraphs this morning and have been in some kind of daze all day. There are days when I wake up and feel so out of sync with the world that it’s like my brain has teleported to a different universe.
I’m also getting annoyed at this blog becoming all me me me but I haven’t done anything exciting recently that’s worth writing about.
It’s hard to go out and do things, even for the purpose of writing an interesting blog post about them (as good a reason as any), when all I want to do in my spare time is curl up under the duvet. It’s harder still when I get up with a ‘rah’ bravado and determination to git shit done and end up spending the day moping around the house and staring into space. I’ve also realised I tend to slip into the second person when writing about these things (i.e. “when all you want to do in your spare time…”), whether it’s because it’s difficult to admit to myself that I struggle with life sometimes or because it’s a technique to draw the reader in. Check me out. I use techniques.
What else? I’ve accidentally paid too much council tax because I hate logging on to my online banking so much that I forgot to cancel the standing order. I wore red lipstick that looked good for the first time last week. It’s my birthday on Monday. I feel less hostile towards people.
Life goes on, regardless of storms.