New Start

The truth is that I had an absolutely dreadful flight home yesterday. First of all, I misread the ticket, thinking that the flight was at 8:45 AM when in fact it was at 8:45 PM, so I got up at 5 in the morning for no real reason. This is why we should have a twenty-four hour clock. Or maybe I could try reading more closely. Whatever.

In any case, when the flight finally came, I was relieved to find that I was not seated beside any babies. However, it soon came to attention that I was seated in the vicinity of something even worse than a mere baby: namely, a vocal paranoid conspiracy theorist who spent the next three hours loudly chatting up the rather unenthusiastic girl next to him. And when I say that he was chatting her up, what I in fact mean is that he seemed to be of the impression that the way to win friends and influence people is by cornering them and blabbering-on about the Bilderburg Group.

I’m not going to dwell on what he said here, though, because that’s not actually the subject of this post. Rather, this post is about whining.

You see, as I was composing this post in my head, it occurred to me that I have been doing an awful lot of whining lately, to the point that I sound basically like Marvin the Paranoid* Android from the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Now, I like Marvin quite a bit as a character. I would not, however, like to spend time around someone like that; much less would I like to be someone like that.

So here’s the new deal: I’m going to stop blatantly whining (unless, that is, I can do so in an amusing fashion) and try my hand at accentuating the positive. Like, for example, rather than getting hung up on the fact that I had to get out of bed at five in the morning, I am going to focus on the fact that the extra day in my hometown allowed me to spend quality time with family, and the fact that, because of it, I was able to plan a Sir John A.MacDonald day party for next Friday, the star attraction of which will be a really, really sucky Sir John A. MacDonald action figure**, which I would not have been able to bring home with me if not for the delay.

Likewise, today, instead of being bummed-out by recent financial shortfalls, I am instead going to be pleased by the fact that I’ve gained permission to audit at least one of the courses for which I could not register. The moral, of course, is that you win you lose some.

I’m tempted to try this as an experiment for the next month, but I have the sneaking suspicion that it will end up reading like Candide.


*Marvin isn’t paranoid, he’s clinically depressed. I’m surprised that Douglas Adams made this mistake.

**Complete with three points of articulation. Sadly, though, I was unable to find it’s accessories, including some books, spectacles, and replica Victorian furniture. Neither was I able to find the insultingly sanitized and dumbed-down biography that came with the figure.


About thevenerablecorvex

I have the heart of a poet, the brain of a theoretical physicist, and the wingspan of an albatross. I am also notable for my humility.
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5 Responses to New Start

  1. I once got to spend hours on a trans-US flight next to a woman who was absolutely convinced that her daughter’s autism was caused by the Hepatitis B vaccine (not even MMR), and was “writing” a book about it. She was just coming back from a crazy conference. And she felt the need to tell me everything that was wrong with her daughter and how it was all the doctors faults, and how she was doing all these things to try and cure her because her daughter didn’t have any friends and didn’t like to go play with the other little girls, etc. etc. (I’m pretty sure her daughter was something like 12, and verbal, and probably pretty smart from the undertones of what the mom was saying, but not recognizing) I spent the entire plane ride not saying anything and rocking… I don’t think she got the point…

      • haha – doesn’t make it any less pleasant than yours. I only wish I’d had the presence of mind to tell her to fuck off and that I was autistic and her daughter would be doing much better if she actually treated her with respect as a person, instead of a “diseased non-human” she wanted to magically turn into a human like herself. (It’s funny, the most obnoxious ones always want to make more people like themselves. Weird…)

  2. Priyanka says:

    I suspect Adams couldn’t resist picking a ‘condition’ that rhymed with android. ‘Marvin the Depressed Android’ doesn’t quite have that ring to it, now does it?

    And yes, I love what E. above did, but frankly, I’m so easily irked by people’s crass insensitivity these days — especially towards young people they voluntarily brought into the world — that I’d probably have vaulted over my usual obsessive niceness and told her she was a bleeding moron and an awful parent. Then let the chips fall where they may 😛

    • It just seems horrible to discuss such unpleasant things with strangers who are trapped and can not get away from you for hours at a time. But I find that a lot of such people have no idea that anyone disagrees with them, and, indeed honestly seem to expect that most people will be grateful for the steaming turds of truth they leave-out for them.
      …Which seems bizarre from the conspiracist perspective, actually, because most of their theories would require hundreds of thousands of people working in tandem.

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