0n The Road : Habits and Compulsions edition

Trying out a folding keyboard I got with this tablet today. Still nowhere near full sized, but the keys give me physical feedback and it is laid out like a normal computer keyboard, so that makes it better than the virtual keyboard right there.

Plus, typing on the virtual keyboard makes my fingers go all flat, and that is annoying and painful.

This just happened : I am typing away when movement on the floor of the part of the mall outside my window catches my eye. I look,  and see a small black sphere roll in a straight line then come to a gentle stop.

“Oh shit!” I said to myself. “The Locknar has finally found me!”

Luckily, this turned out not to be the case. Good thing too… I’ve been hiding from that thing for 20 years!

I look around to see, in a perfect tableau of universal childhood trauma, an adorable little girl in a frilly pink dress holding a half-full bag of gumballs, with various other colors of gumball on the floor around her.

And just as I look, I can see her look of astonishment start to turn to distress. I immediately started working out the logistics of going to help her,  but I was too slow. A nice lady in a floral print dress stopped to comfort our little preschool princess in distress.

So it turned out to be a heartwarming story of human kindness,  with a strong visual for the beginning.

So where was I? Oh right, habits and compulsions.

As I write this, I have half a White Spot BBQ Chicken Sanwich in front of me. This is a good thing, because I have ordered thee Chicken  Caesar Wrap like eight weeks in a row, and I was in danger of falling into a deep rut.

And I trying to rid myself of that kind of thing.

See, I have recently become aware that I have a host of small compulsions about the way I do things that serve no purpose and therefore are unnecessary restrictions on  my mental flexibility.

As themselves, they aren’t a problem. But they are part of a larger problem, and tackling them will be good practice for overcoming the larger problem

I call them compulsions instead of habits because when  I evren think of defying them, I get this terrible feeling of doom. As if something terrible will happen if I break the pattern.

That is exactly how people with OCD describe their compulsions. It is this feeling of doom that negatively reinforces the compulsion.

I didn’t see my little quirks as compulsions for a long time because I do not match the media image of a compulsive person. For one, I am a lifelong slob. And when you spend most of your time alone, there is nobody to notice and comment upon the fact that you do things the exact same way or via the same rule every single time, so it all fades into the backgrround of your life.

Its your normal.

But now that I am cognizant of the problem, I am doing everything I can to stamp out these little compulsions. I am through with being ruled by fear. And I am determined to free my mind of all the dead weight in my mind. Those compulsions were taking up valuable mental CPU cycles. Freeing my mind of them leaves my mind open to develop more healthy and productive habits.

Like, say, getting things done, instead of just fucking around.

The most important thing, though, is to build up my ability to say “no” to my emotions, especially fear. That is as good a definition of willpower as any. I want to develop my ability to do what I want to do regardless of the often meaningless fluctuations of my emotions.

It’s a vital skill. Without it, we are as helpless as leaves in the wind. With it, we can face the whirlwind and plot our own course through it.

See? That was AIR imagery. I’m breaking all the rulea.

Something something FIRE.

Well I am getting silly, so it must be time to go home. Seeya when I get there!


Hmm, not bad. Wrote almost 700 words in that White Spot.

I didn’t exactly love their BBQ Chicken Sandwich. It was a big ol’ mess. Chicken, BBQ sauce, coleslaw, tomato, and a bunch of other stuff. It’s like they tried to stick a whole picnic between two slices of bread.

As a result, the flavour was all over the place, as was the sandwich, because it was very messy to eat. And that’s something almost impossible for me to forgive in a food. It would have to be something I really, really like in order for me to endure he potential mess every time I took a bite.

There were several good sandwiches in there somewhere. They should serve them separately.

I also tried their new summer treat, Tangerine Sorbet, which I automatically hear to the tune of the Prince song “Raspberry Beret”, to wit :

It was a Tangerine Sorbet
The kind you find at a Yaletown store
Tangerine Sorbet
And if it was warm, she wouldn’t eat much more

The moment I saw it on the menu, I knew I had to try it. I love tangerines and I am pretty fond of sorbet as well. Way better than that wimpy gelato.

And it tasted great! The flavour was perfecto. But it was way, way too strong.

And yes, that makes me feel old. I used to be the kind of person for whom there was no such thing as too strong a flavour. I wanted everything amped up to 11. But that was a long time ago, and now, the combination of strong flavour and the richness of sorbet just made my stomach roll.

So my taste buds loved it but my stomach was like, no way, WTF is that? Nuh uh.

Well that’s it for today, daytime shoppers.

I will talk to you nice people again tomorrow.

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