Geeks Vs Loneliness: false starts

In which we start. We stop. We start again.

Sometimes life is like a washing machine on a permanent spin cycle. Round and round in never decreasing circles, hoping that whatever comes out at the end is a little less crumpled, a little more socially acceptable.

Quite often the stains don’t come out, or the garment fades. Still, the cycle goes on. We try, and try again.

I was contemplating the GvL graveyard this week. That special place in the micro-ether where articles go to die. The ones that never make it quite into readable shape. Or which trail off into a screaming tumult of fury and nonsense. My false starts.

Life sometimes seems filled with such false starts. How many times have you sat down to watch the latest hit on Netflix or Prime, only to have your interest wane by episode 6 of what feels like scene after scene of interminable exposition and improbable dialogue? Log into my Netflix account and there they are – littering my ‘watch’ category like a catalogue of pretty failures. Pouty stars frown disapproval at my abandonment. It’s all a bit wearying, this keeping up with the kids.

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I suspect we all have a graveyard somewhere, filled with projects and hobbies once approached with enthusiasm and joy that fell by the wayside. Could be for any reason – life has a habit of tripping you up just as you feel you’ve got started. Obligations, lack of money – anything can land you right back on the old familiar treadmill of boredom and shelved ideas.

It can be easy to look at these projects, these incomplete lists, as failures. Instead we should maybe think of them as appetisers. A taster session for the main course. Also a good indicator of what paths we don’t want to go down in life. There is no shame in shaking your head and saying, no – that’s not the road for me. And jumping lanes if you need to.

I have the theme to The Littlest Hobo as this week’s earworm. A voice, somewhere down the road is calling me to where I want to be. Maybe tomorrow I’ll want to settle down. But in the interim there’s nothing wrong with a road trip full of tasty chips and dips. The odd main meal here and there. Or popcorn, if you prefer.

The naysayer in your head might be shouting that all these half finished things are you giving up too easily. Change that voice to one of ‘ok, that is interesting and I get why other people stick with it – but it isn’t for me’. Look at the positive bits, the parts you’d like to keep. Shuck off the bits that don’t fit.

My GvL graveyard serves a purpose. It’s a testing ground for ideas, some of which take root, others of which don’t. It isn’t a trap designed to intensify my guilt – unless I allow it to be.

Baggage weighs you down. We (hopefully) have long lives ahead of us. Maybe we should embrace that inner Hobo, and follow his mantra:

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“…so if you want to join me for awhile,just grab your hat, come travel light,that’s hobo style.”

Terry Bush – Maybe Tomorrow (The Littlest Hobo)

I think this week my mission is to find a new hat to give me a different perspective. Dust off ideas with potential; retire those that don’t without regret. Step onto an interesting new path in style.

Care to join me?

Thanks as always for reading.