I have half a textbook chapter, a 20-question quiz, and a giant assignment standing between me and my summer holiday, and I’m finding it difficult to just do it, despite being yelled at by Shia LaBeouf numerous times now.
Partly I’m distracted by the fact that we’ve decided to move again (AGAIN). We looked at houses this morning, so “studying” this afternoon has actually involved mindlessly copying words from my textbook into a Word document while mentally arranging our furniture in the L-shaped lounge room of one of the places we saw, and trying to work out exactly how many noise-diminishing rugs we’d need if we were to move into the house with the wooden floorboards throughout. And then there’s the “Are we completely bonkers, thinking of moving again?” thoughts, for which I’ve been making up two answer lists. So far I have:
- Moving will remove an hour of driving time each weekday which could be spent doing more important things, like ACTUALLY READING YOUR TEXTBOOK.
- Moving will mean we can live in a house again, and therefore ditch our tiresome “BE QUIET!!!! People may still be SLEEPING!!!” morning ritual.
- A house will mean fewer stairs. Mo’s convinced this will make his life far more bearable, which would in turn make my life far more bearable.
- Moving will mean packing up all of our stuff and then unpacking all of our stuff.
- Moving will mean saying goodbye to our beloved neighbours, who have become close precisely because we hear their children running through their apartment at 6am and we run into each other on the stairs and share the bin duties and bring in each others’ washing when it’s about to rain and look after each others’ kids when one of us desperately needs to run to the bottle-o and buy some wine and pitch in to get the garden looking neater before David comes home from hospital -- all of the mini-community aspects of apartment living that I love so dearly. I won’t necessarily miss having to respond to text messages asking if Hazel’s okay because she’s been heard crying noisily for most of the morning, but I will miss the walk home from a friend’s house after dinner together literally taking 15 seconds from their front door to ours (even less if you jump the stairs, like Mo does).
So. We’re leaning towards the “No!“ and hoping we’ll find somewhere perfect and have the move over and done with before my next class starts (midway through January).
And while a large part of my mind is preoccupied with decorating the interiors of houses we may never live in, a smaller part is trying to distract me from anxious moving thoughts by thinking, “I wonder what will happen next in season two of Friday Night Lights?” and, “I wonder if this season will get any better, because I’m not particularly enjoying any of the storylines at the moment.” And then a different part of my mind chimes in with, “I know! Instead of watching TV you could keep reading that book you picked up last night! That was fun!” It’s talking about The Psychopath Test by Jon Ronson, which Alan found at a garage sale and I decided to check out at bedtime last night thanks to the lack of books on my physical to-read pile (I have approximately 7 reserved at the library, and any bet they’ll all suddenly come in at once, after months of waiting for them). I ended up reading two chapters instead of the one I’d allowed myself, both of which had me silent-laughing into my pillow so as not to wake Alan. I’m still not entirely sure what the premise of the book is, but Jon Ronson is a journalist whose investigation of a mystery has now led him to researching psychopaths (it’s nonfiction). Ronson is relate-ably neurotic and incredibly funny, and I’m finding the book fascinating, hilarious, and therefore difficult to put down. Here’s a sample:
In another office a neurologist was studying the July 1996 case of a doctor, a former RAF pilot, who flew over a field in broad daylight, turned around, flew back over it fifteen minutes later, and there, suddenly, was a vast crop circle. It was as if it had just materialised. It covered ten acres and consisted of a hundred and fifty-one separate circles. The circle, dubbed the Julia Set, became the most celebrated in crop-circle history. T-shirts and posters were printed. Conventions were organised. The movement had been dying off – it had become increasingly obvious that crop circles were built not by extra-terrestrials but by conceptual artists in the dead of night using planks of wood and string – but this one had appeared from nowhere in the fifteen-minute gap between the pilot’s two journeys over the field.The neurologist in this room was trying to work out why the pilot’s brain had failed to spot the circle the first time around. It had been there all along, having been built the previous night by a group of conceptual artists known as Team Satan using planks of wood and string.
And then a much smaller part of my mind’s telling me, “Dude, reading that book is not counted as study just because it happens to explicitly mention psychological concepts. You only have one week left of study! READ YOUR TEXTBOOK!”