Tag Archives: bored

Nobody cares about your dumb séance

I have this really weird friend, and she’d been talking about doing a séance for months. “Come on guys!” she’d say after nobody responded to any of her suggestions. Nobody ever responded. Because nobody wants to do a séance. Nobody but crazy people. “It’ll be so much fun!” and we’d just do our best to ignore her, to hope that after a while she’d burn herself out, maybe take a hint that nobody felt like standing around and holding hands like a bunch of wackos.


And yeah, I guess she took the hint, because one day she decided to take charge, to force us all into participating. We arrived at our friend Jeff’s place at eight, and even Jeff looked kind of shocked as we entered the darkened living room, the long candles set up around the perimeter of a folding poker table set up in the middle.

“What the hell Jeff?” we all asked without actually saying anything. And Jeff just shrugged, communicating, “I don’t know guys, she just showed up and started setting everything up.” Which, sorry Jeff, you’re not off the hook. I mean, talk about being a pushover. That’s your place. It’s your responsibility to put the foot down when someone comes over and tries to take over the direction of a get-together at your apartment. It’s like when I have people over, and Carl tries to hijack the music. “Come on guys, there’s this really cool Gypsy punk band that I found out about online. We should listen to the whole album!” Yeah, it’s a little mean, taking the computer out of his hands, password protecting the playlist. But what’s the alternative?

The alternative is shit like this, sitting around some ridiculous table getting ready to play make-believe with all of your adult friends, when all you really want to be doing is smoking pot and playing video games. “Guys, come on, hold hands! Be quiet!” that was our friend. We were all past the point of looking visibly pissed off, and half of us were muttering obscenities under our breath. She didn’t care, “Guys! Quiet!”

She turned off the lights and lit all of the candles. “For real guys, just hold hands, just come on.” And we did, probably because we realized that this was never going to stop being a thing unless we just got through it. So, begrudgingly, I joined hands with the two guys to my side, hoping that this wouldn’t take too much longer.

“Spirits from beyond,” she started her séance speech. It was too much to take. Like were these prepared words that she had written down ahead of time? Or was she just winging it, going for the whole otherworldly ghost feel? It was way over the top, the way she pronounced everything, “from beyo – ooo – oond.”

But after like a minute of this nonsense the candles all blew out at the same time. That got everybody’s attention. “Hey, how’d you do that?” one of my friends said, and someone else said, “Shhh.”

“Ghost of the departed, why do you come? What do you need to tell us?”

And then a voice started speaking. It sounded like it was coming from the middle of the table, but there wasn’t any echo or anything, nothing like the disembodied characteristics that you hear in ghost movies. With the lights out, our eyes didn’t have a chance to adjust, and so we couldn’t see anything, the source of the voice, if it was just one of our friends playing the part of the deceased.

“What do you mean?” the voice said.

“Why do you come from bey – ooo –oond?”

“I don’t know. You summoned me. What do you want?”

“Deliver unto us your otherworldly message!”

“For real? This is like something out of a bad horror movie. Come on, aren’t you guys bored? How’d you let her talk you into to any of this? I mean, I’m fine. I’m beyond the whole concept of time and space, so this isn’t really a big deal for me. Yeah, I’m bored, but it’s not like I have anywhere better to be. What about you guys? You’re just going to waste the rest of your twenties sitting around and playing video games? I’m not judging, it’s just that when I was alive …”

“OK! All right! Thank you. We get it. Thank you for visiting us. Guys, does anybody see the lighter? Can someone turn the lights on?”

And Jeff was right by the door. He hit the switch and the lights went on and there was nobody else with us. It was just a bunch of people sitting around a table, still kind of awkwardly holding hands.

Nobody wanted to talk about it anymore. Everyone felt a little ridiculous, that even if it were a real ghost that we somehow conjured into this plane of existence, that even the disembodied voices of the dead think that a stupid séance is a dumb waste of time. I wanted to rub this fact in my friend’s face, but nobody was saying anything. I think she felt bad about it. We all just quietly opened our beers and packed our bowls while Jeff blew in the cartridges of his old N64 games, trying to get Super Smash Brothers to work. Carl and Bill started fighting over who got to play as Captain Falcon. I need to get some new friends.

I should just find the sprinkler

The other day I was outside in my backyard watering the plants. I have a sprinkler somewhere, but there’s this really stubborn and lazy resistance preventing me from digging it out and setting it up. My day-to-day routine would be a lot easier, which isn’t to say that I’m out there every day. But I’m at least thinking about it, as I waste time surfing the Internet, or rush to get ready so I’m no more than five minutes late to work. There’s always that nagging feeling in the back of my mind, dude, you have to water the plants.

Garden irrigation system

Sometimes I’ll get a pretty good rhythm going, something almost resembling a routine. Maybe a stretch of three or four days will pass when I’m actually doing it somewhat regularly, I’m outside, I’m watering the garden. But then maybe it’ll rain and I’ll get the day off. And then the next day I’ll say to myself, well, it rained a lot yesterday, so I’m sure the ground is still wet. And then the day after that, I can see from my window that the soil is visibly dry, but going outside and doing something about it, man, I haven’t done that in three days now. I’m comfortable, settled in to a new routine of not going outside at all.

But more often than not I’m at least trying to take care of my tomatoes and lettuce, and so every other day or so, every three days, max, I head outside and turn on the hose. It’s an exercise not only in the responsibility of daily chores, but also one of patience and standing still.

Some days it’s easier than others. I’ll get lost in the moment, I’ll enjoy being outside, it won’t really feel like a chore at all. But then a lot of the time I’m antsy. All of that resistance that I was talking about earlier, just because I manage to make it outside doesn’t mean that I’m not still drawn back into the house, I can feel it, my chair, the computer, the Internet, they’re all beckoning me to put down the hose and resume my endless wasting of time.

I was out there and I’d been at the hose for maybe a minute, a minute and a half. Everything about being outside was bothering me. I’d been neglecting the lawn for a while now. Everything was starting to get really overgrown and wild. It was the first really, really hot day of the year, and so I was having a very minor freak-out about the passage of time, how I swear it was just winter, like I close my eyes and I can see myself shivering in the cold, closing my eyes in my mind and saying to myself, what the hell, I thought it was just summer. And I feel momentarily overwhelmed, like my whole life is just this blur, I’m trapped on carousel that’s going just a little too fast and I can never really get a good focus on the outside world for more than a second or two.

But even this micro-panic, at least it was occupying my mind. While I stood there and contemplated how in no time at all my life would be over, the hose was going, a minute turned into two minutes, at least something was getting done. But just as I was starting to settle into a standing-still routine, I was jerked abruptly back into the present.

What happened? It was my right leg. All of the sudden it was on fire. I looked down and, I must have accidentally parked my foot directly on top of an anthill, because below the ankle, it was covered in tiny ants. I freaked out, started swatting and scratching at my leg. I turned the hose on myself, and then at the anthill. I wasn’t thinking at all, it was just a pure reaction.

And then I started stomping around, because as I tried to shake all of the little insects from my foot, I realized that there were too many, that for every one that I squished against my skin, there were another two or three crawling out from the many crevasses inside my sneaker, in between the spaces of the fabric that made up my socks.

I retreated back inside and I could feel the itching for the rest of the day. Even when I went to bed later that night, they were there, little phantom ants desperately trying to grab my attention, doing anything in their power to get me to take just one more step. I briefly felt a little guilty for blasting their entire habitat with my hose, but I can’t get down on myself for that. That’s human instinct, that’s how we evolved to be the dominant species on this planet, by lashing out and immediately destroying anything that poses even an imaginary threat to our piece of mind, or lack thereof.

I really should go out there and clean everything up. The hose is still lying there, the plants could use another drink. But I can just see it now, me, I won’t be able to stay still, certainly not long enough to use the hose to saturate the ground. I’ll be too busy hopping around, swatting at thousands of potentially real insect bites. I should just look for that sprinkler. I know it’s around here somewhere.

Surprise delivery

I have these days off from work, it’s not a real weekend, it’s a Tuesday, I work in a restaurant, and so my week doesn’t really match up with anybody else’s week. There are definitely some perks. Like my days off are really my days. I have them all to myself. All of those things like going to the bank or running errands, stuff that everyone else has to take care of during a lunch break, that’s not really a thing for me.

And so yeah, that’s cool. But today, this Tuesday, it’s been raining out since I woke up. And so I don’t want to go outside at all. At first it wasn’t a big deal. I have enough cereal and coffee in the house so actually leaving the house didn’t have to be an option. Not at first anyway.

But a bowl of cereal only gets you so far, and then it was lunchtime, and I still had zero desire to put on a pair of pants, much less finding a pair of matching socks, an umbrella. I mentioned it was raining, right? It was raining when I woke up and it’s raining now.

And it kind of feels like, come on, this is my day off. What should have been a nice day of getting stuff done turned into this day of lethargy, I’m unable to get out of my seat. My hunger mounted to the point where it was two or three in the afternoon, and while I didn’t necessarily want to eat any more cereal, I really knew that there was nothing that was going to get me outside, not until the skies cleared and the ground dried.

I kept looking at that box of cereal, why was I fighting it? It was almost an inevitability at this point. Eventually I’d get hungry enough and, barring some delivery guy accidentally dropping food off at my house, I’d make a move and pour myself a bowl.

That would be crazy though, right? I mean, if a delivery guy did mistakenly ring my doorbell, I couldn’t just pay for the food. It’s funny because it’s happened before. Not often, but maybe like two or three times, I’d hear the doorbell, it would be the delivery guy, he’d be like, “Dee-LEE-berry,” and I’d be like, “Nah man, you must have the wrong address.” And he’d just kind of stand there for a while.

One time I felt really bad for the guy, he didn’t know any English at all really, and so when I told him that he must have the wrong place, he kind of just stood there, staring at me, holding his hand out. And how do you make hand gestures that spell out, “No. Wrong house?” I mean, obviously I was already shaking my head no, and it wasn’t getting through. So I finally took the order out of his hands, and I walked him the two or so block down to where he needed to be.

But man, if that had happened today, I would have been like, yes, thank you, how much was that again? Here you go, thanks. And it would be like a surprise delivery. In fact, I wish there was such a thing, surprise delivery. Like, isn’t that the worst part about getting food delivered? Figuring out what you’re going to get, where you’re going to get it from? They should start a company, Surprise Delivery, you text your address and however much money you want to spend, and then half an hour later, “Ding-dong! Delivery! Surprise Delivery!”

That would be awesome. But it would never happen. And even if I did get an accidental delivery right now, and even if I did pay for it, I’m sure it would get back to me. Whoever ordered their food would call back eventually, even if they couldn’t get it straightened out, someone’s night would have been ruined, no dinner, just transferring my hunger onto a random stranger. And maybe it would get straightened out. I’d get a knock at the door, that delivery guy, “Why’d you pay for this food? What the hell man?”

No, I just poured some more cereal, I got full. That’s all I’ve had today is cereal and coffee. And I’m just sitting here, I know it can’t be good for me, like aren’t there all sorts of other nutrients and stuff that cereal alone can’t provide for the human body? What kind of a day off is this anyway?

I know this is boring

I think I’m out of ideas. Yup. The best is behind me, everything that needs to be said, well, I’ve already said it, and that’s on top of all of the other stuff that totally didn’t need to be said, of which I’ve already said a lot. But that was that, said, done. All that’s left is to keep on going, saying anything, keep on keeping on as if I’ve got something, when really, nothing.


Like, what can I talk about, lunch? I had McDonald’s. I think I’ve already talked way too much about McDonald’s. So, yeah, I’m also drinking a cup of coffee. Nothing like a cup of hot coffee. Look, I know this is boring, and I could apologize, but what good would that do? I’ve said sorry before, it hasn’t changed anything, or added anything relevant to the discussion.

Nothing left to do but talk about how I have to go to work in a little while. Does anybody else have to work? Or is it just me? Me and all of the people that I work with. Is that it? That’s not much of a workforce. Maybe we’d make a good pro football team. Not in terms of skill or anything like that, but just getting a whole team fielded, and then backups ready. Or soccer I guess, yeah, there are a lot of people on a soccer team. But nobody ever wants to be goalie, and for some reason I find it so much more rewarding imagining all of the people I work with every day lining up to protect me from the onslaught of opposing linemen.

Because I’m definitely the quarterback in that fantasy. Whether or not my coworkers would agree with me, well, I guess they’re entitled to their own fantasies also. And since this is my fantasy, I don’t know why I’m settling for football, I can barely even throw a football. I mean, I can get it from point A to point B, or somewhere in the general vicinity of point B, but it’s never a nice throw, I’d say maybe one out of thirty times it’ll come close to that perfect spiral, the kind of smooth torpedo that everybody else in the world somehow seems to accomplish almost effortlessly. But mine are all topsy-turvy.

And that’s not even a real regulation sized football. I always thought the footballs in my parents’ garage were like pro footballs, but one time I came across an NFL sized football at the Sports Authority, and I could barely hold it with one hand. And I have giant hands. No, no more football fantasies. From here on out, I mean, I’ve got nothing to say anyway, so it’s right back to sci-fi fantasies, it’s me, I’m the captain of a gigantic spaceship, and all of those same coworkers that were defending me on the field before, this time they’re manning Ops, rushing toward battle stations or preparing the torpedoes for launch. “Ay-ay captain!” they’ll respond, sometimes just at random, like they won’t even have to necessarily wait for an order to say, “Ay-ay captain!” that’ll be something that’s encouraged on my ship, just say it whenever you feel like it.

Even my boss. Especially my boss. Maybe he’s cut out to be the boss at work, but on my ship, I’m the boss. And I’d call him boss still, but as a really ironic nickname, like, “Hey boss, remember when we were all back on Earth? How you used to be in charge? Haha. Go make sure there isn’t any space mold in between the engineering conduits.”

Or, I don’t know, that’s a lot of responsibility, managing that big of a crew. And in space. Maybe I’d prefer one of those really small boats, not tiny, but just big enough for one cabin inside, something quaint. I’d have cable still, but no Internet. Just me, the eternal ocean, and the incessant chatter of all of the twenty-four hour news channels. All of them, right-wing, left-wing, British, whatever, I’d watch a different channel every day and I’d try my best to completely alter my opinions accordingly, like not just an act, I’d see if I could really get myself to believe in whatever they were saying. I’d have plenty of time, and nobody to talk me out of it.

But then what if one of the channels started running specials, “This just in. Never, ever, ever watch another cable news channel, ever again, only us,” and even though I do my best to believe, sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn’t, but for whatever reason on this day I really nail it, I so thoroughly absorb that message, I’m like, yes, just this channel forever.

But wasn’t I on a ship? I don’t know. Maybe the cable is too much. And maybe it’s a submarine. Although, I’m kind of tall, so I’d need one where I’m not constantly ducking underneath all sorts of low hanging pipes. And yeah I guess you need a pretty big crew for a submarine. Maybe I could just be like a consultant, or a VIP guest, nobody could boss me around, but I wouldn’t have to worry about management. And again, lots of headroom. I’ve banged my head on pipes before, and it sucks, it really, really hurts.

Just letting my mind wander a little

I get so bored sometimes. I’ve been staring at this computer screen for the better part of an hour just trying to think of something to write about. I don’t know where my ideas usually come from, but it’s just not happening today. I bought this ten dollar application for my computer called Freedom, and it totally blocks out the Internet for specified amount of time. I thought, this will be great, I won’t have any distractions, I’ll get all of my writing done a lot quicker.

But the writing isn’t coming out. And I don’t have anything to do now, because I shut off the Internet. And I planned it perfectly, so that it’s only going to come back on right as I have to leave for work. So I’m just sitting here at the kitchen table tapping my feet on the floor.

What else is there to do? Maybe the Internet’s not holding me back, maybe it allows my mind to wander, to stretch to an extent that I get creative. Maybe I’ll waste an hour clicking from link to link, but maybe that inspires some base part of the creative process. Or maybe I’m just going through Internet withdrawal right now and my brain is trying to come up with nonsense reasoning of why I should have never allowed myself to shut off the Internet in the first place.

I had three cups of coffee right before I sat down. So my leg’s tapping furiously against the chair, against the floor. I’ve gotten it to such a perfect pace that my entire thigh muscle is completely bouncing up and off the bone. It’s a weird feeling, and I can only keep it up for a little while before my foot starts sliding on the kitchen tile. I lose the rhythm, I have to pull my foot back and, try as I might, I can’t find those measured beats again.

Every day around two o’clock the sun starts pouring through the kitchen window, totally blinding me to the point where I can’t even see my computer screen. It’s been kind gloomy out lately, so I’ve gotten used to being able to sit down for an extended period of time without having to move across the room avoiding the sun’s direct rays. Now it’s just coming out sporadically.

Would you consider sporadic to be a big word? I try to avoid big words. Not because I don’t like them, or don’t understand them. Sure there are tons of big words that I don’t understand. I just feel like a lot of the time it’s a trick, a way to come across as intelligent without really being intelligent. There was this kid I worked with in high school, kind of a dick but whatever, when you’re in high school and you don’t have a car yet you kind of just hang out with whoever’s around. And I worked with this kid all the time.

And he always had a way of using unnecessarily long words in totally inappropriate situations. One time this kid made a joke to our boss, but it was a really shitty joke, and it didn’t get any sort of a reaction whatsoever. And so as my boss just stares at him, the kid says, “I was being facetious.” It looked like somebody was spending a little too much time prepping for the SATs.

Facetious. Give me a break. As I went through college, as I spent a lot of time writing and editing for our school’s newspaper, I found a bunch of words that people would use over and over again for the sake of sounding smart. Words that weren’t necessary, like facetious. You could just say that you were joking around. No, people liked to use facetious. Plethora. That’s another one. Copious. Whatever, they’re words, and so I guess you’re allowed to use them, but nobody talks like that in real life. It just sounds so contrived, or made up.

Sporadic. The only reason I feel like that’s an acceptable word is, one, because I already used it, and so I don’t want to sound like a hypocrite, but two, I learned it from the movie Clueless, where they’re all studying for the SATs. And they learn the word sporadic. And then the older brother says to that girl, “Be seeing you,” and she responds, “Hope not sporadically,” and they kind of wink at each other in that haha we just used the word we just learned about.

And the reason I remember this scene so well is because they played Clueless on HBO pretty much nonstop during the early 2000s. Whatever, if you didn’t have cable, or worse, if you had cable but no HBO, you probably have no idea what I’m talking about. But if you had HBO, you know exactly what I’m talking about, and so, yeah, I think sporadic is totally appropriate. I’m not being facetious. I’m being super serial. (That’s not from Clueless, that’s from South Park.)