Dirt

We have a new coworker, dry as dirt, dry as bone meal, dry as the Santa Ana winds. Not good dry, not funny dry, but dry—voice a monotone worthy of emergency weather radio, choice of conversation so far yogurt and the weather. After two minutes in her company I start to think about cutting my toenails, washing base boards, counting grains of sand, about putting grains of sand into my eyes and making tiny pearls. Eye pearls, I’ll call them. I might go blind, but I’ll be rich. Wait, did she stop talking? Is she done? Thank God!

I heard recently that boredom is good for you, that somehow it leads to increased creativity. I don’t know if that’s true. If I get bored I get tired and anxious, as it usually means I’m stuck somewhere, like prison. Or jury duty, or the DMV, or work when I’m not busy. Boredom, apparently, goes hand in hand with bureaucracy in my experience. If I’m home, I’m never bored, so, to me, boredom always comes with an arbitrary physical restriction. I once had a temp job so boring—start over, I’ve had quite a few temp jobs that were so boring. In my boredom, I have: made sculptures out of paperclips and rubber bands; written short stories; fallen asleep; read books; played solitaire … and still I can’t recommend it as a creative experience.

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