Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Life's too short

Life's too short to be wasted on pointless nonsense. There are just too many demands on our time to fritter it away on things that don't inspire us or enliven us. As Secret Agent Woman has said so wittily, listing the particular bĂȘtes noires she does her best to avoid.

I have a few extra bĂȘtes noires of my own, things that do nothing for my life or well-being and breed only frustration and weariness. Life's too short to:

Pretend I'm someone I'm not. It's so easy to put on an act in response to what others expect of me, and hide my real self. But all it does is make me feel false and cowardly. It also leaves people with a phoney idea of who I am.

Exhaust myself in a gym. Natural forms of exercise like hill-walking are more fun and more scenic. Struggling with machines in a sweaty gym is totally artificial and not at all essential for my health.

Listen to moaners. The hours I've wasted listening to people moaning away about their workplace, their neighbours and their relatives. I prefer to spend my time with people who enjoy life rather than moan about it.

Think about the Royal Family. I couldn't care less about the Royals. They're just a bunch of parasites sponging off the rest of us and giving little in return. It's about time they did some real jobs. How about plumbing?

Idealise politicians. I no longer kid myself that politicians who promise a bright new future mean what they say. I've seen too many false dawns and blighted communities to be convinced any more.

Bear grudges. Better to let bygones be bygones rather than brood over old grievances that will never be put right. Yes, we all get treated badly from time to time, but simmering over it for years only makes us sour.

Dwell on things I can't control. Likewise, there's no point in harping on about things I have little influence over. Like drink-driving or homophobia or religious fanatics. I concentrate on things I can actually do something about.

Keep the house spotless. I'm not one of those houseproud obsessives who clean and sweep non-stop. There's always going to be dust and grease marks somewhere. As long as the place is presentable, that's enough for me.

Shop till I drop. I can't stand shopping, I do it only when I absolutely have to. Spending an entire day in a shopping centre, buying things I don't need and being assaulted by endless Musak, is my idea of hell.

Worry about my failings. Like everyone, I make mistakes and I upset people. There's no point in beating myself up over it or wishing I was more perfect. I do what I can to put things right, and then I move on.

34 comments:

Scarlet Blue said...

Are you moaning again, Nick?
Sx

rummuser said...

Drop the Royals and that list is mine too. Not that I am qualified to comment on your Royals!

Nick said...

Scarlet - Moan moan, life's too short, too much to do, so little time, whinge whinge....

Ramana - You don't need to be qualified. After all, what exactly are they qualified for, apart from shaking hands and cutting ribbons? Go ahead, say what you like....

Grannymar said...

Nick, were you reading my mind? They would all be on my list too.

e said...

I agree for the most part, but going to a supervised hospital gym has proven very helpful to me and such programmes are not available in every community, either. I agree that being able to walk and do other things outdoors can be a good thing and perhaps better than a gym for most people, and I am looking for more opportunities to be outdoors.

Roses said...

Wow. And still you read my blog...

That's a good list. I agree with everything that's on there.

Jenny Muir said...

Er, yes, I'd noticed you don't believe in keeping the house spotless!

Nick said...

Grannymar - Glad to know my telepathy faculty is still in good working order.

e - Well, I would exempt people like you from my comments! I know how essential the gym is for your physical health.

Roses - Oh, I only read your blog because I love looking at your photo, lol....

Jenny - There's no point in getting rid of all the dust, it only comes back again....

Suburbia said...

Still working on some of those myself!

Wisewebwoman said...

Funny this post, Nick, my daughter and I had this convo just the other day.
Particularly when it came to people. We can waste our lives speculating about them as to why they don't put energy into the relationship when the answer is the same as yours, stop wasting time on them and move on to people who do care equally.
Same with activities. I particularly despise gyms, at least harness the energy and drive a few buses with it...LOL
XO
WWW
And dust? what dust?

kylie said...

but nick,
what is your idea of a presentable house?
have you ever noticed (and forgive me if i've said it before) everyone thinks that anyone dirtier than themselves is a pig and anyone cleaner is compulsive

good list too

Terra Shield said...

But I thought interest in The Royals was a national hobby!

(I blame Sue Townsend for this... ;)

Nick said...

Suburbia - I know, old habits die hard, don't they?

W3 - Those one-sided relationships where the other person is just forever needy and negative are especially draining. At some point you just have to say enough is enough.

Nick said...

Kylie - So true! It's all very relative, isn't it? My idea of presentable is at least fairly clean and dust-free, so the visitor's first thought isn't what sort of nasty bugs might jump onto them....

Terra - The Royals ARE a national hobby, but one a significant minority opt out of. I can't believe the obsessive interest in the forthcoming wedding and all its minutiae.

nursemyra said...

The Royal what?

Nick said...

Myra - The Royal Family? The Royal Wedding? The Royal We? "We are most distressed to hear that a number of our subjects are financially embarrassed. One deeply sympathises."

rummuser said...

What more can I say than - "Just see what we did to our Royals!" They have almost all, become inn keepers.

Nick said...

Ramana - Inn keepers, eh? So instead of being waited on, they're now waiting on others? What an amusing irony.

newjenny said...

I think life is rather long.

Nick said...

newjenny - It certainly seems very long when I'm listening to someone moaning on about their endless wait for the bus....

And ironically it seems even shorter when I'm enjoying something so much the time is hurtling by.

Baino said...

Ah Nick . . I think you have the formula down pat. The sweetest thing? Not bearing grudges. Never forget but don't be vindictive. Oh and dwelling on things you can't control yes, totally.

Nick said...

Baino - Not bearing grudges is really important. My father had so many simmering grudges by the time he died, he was a thoroughly bitter old man.

rummuser said...

http://www.heritagehotelsofindia.com/india/heritage-hotels-rajasthan.html

Nick said...

Ramana - Are you suggesting I'm in need of a holiday?

tattytiara said...

Like I say, I would not be at all pleased if at the end of my life I were remembered for my house keeping skills. Once basic hygiene is covered and order restored I'm on to something else.

Nick said...

Tattytiara - Basic hygiene and a sense of order seems a good enough standard for me. A house is not an operating theatre.

rummuser said...

No, suggesting a road that your Royals could take to fend for themselves.

Despite being King of Cowboys, I don't live in a palace, but mi casa tu casa. When you do take the vacation in India, my humble abode will be available to the two of you for as long as you want.

Nick said...

Ramana - A very generous offer, thank you. We're not planning to visit India any time soon, but you never know....

Val said...

I'm with you on most of those. I don't pretend I'm someone I'm not (but I often have problems identifying who I am with all these weird birdies and froggies around me); I'd never get to a gym let alone exhaust myself in one; I moan enough myself, but I try to keep it to myself as much as possible, so there's no need to especially avoid me *grins*; I only think about the Royal Family when someone like yourself mentions them, otherwise they rarely enter my consciousness. I have once or twice had a dream that I've met the queen, though...but I suppose it could've been the queen out of Alice in Wonderland or even Elton John, come to that; I've never idealised a politician (though Mo Mowlam came close); dunno about bearing grudges. I'm trying to remember a grudge I might have beared, er, born, um... well; things I can't control, what like not being able to get a new fridge that'll fit into the old fridge's fitted cupboard? Er...
Me and 'spotless' house don't go together, never have. Me and 'mess' do. Shop til I drop, I wish! I hate shopping, unless it's on Amazon, unfortunately... and I don't really worry about my failings 'cos I've got so many of 'em that it makes me human!

Go you!! Great post, Nick! Thanks for the entertainment. Now go and get your frock on.

Nick said...

Val - My, that's an exhaustive reply! Can't say I've ever dreamt of meeting the Queen, thank goodness. Can't say I've ever dreamt of Elton John either. But I wouldn't mind dreaming of Grayson Perry.

How do you know I don't have my frock on already?

secret agent woman said...

All these could easily fit into my list. And of course, the royal family falls under my own category of celebrities I don't care about. But listening to people moan? Not in my free time, but sometimes as part of my work. :-)

Nick said...

Secret Agent - Do people who moan all the time ever listen to themselves? Do they ever realise just how tedious they're being? Obviously not.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

All of these behaviors are better avoided, you're certainly right about that. (I tried to spell "behaviours" the British way for you, but my angry red spell checker went crazy and threatened my life. And I know it means it.)

Nick said...

Heart - Life hurtles by so fast, it's crazy to waste time on things that are totally unfulfilling and unenjoyable.

The American spelling of behavior is much better. English words are full of unnecessary letters that are never pronounced.