“From 60 to 0 in Two Seconds Flat”
In the blink of an eye, I’ve gone from having absolutely no time to staring at the paint peeling in my bathroom. The rest is welcome, believe me, and yes, I do leave the house on occasion, but this flip-side of the freelancer’s life has struck with the same force as the original typhoon that was winter 2009-2010.
It’s a time to read books, do odd jobs around the apartment, and enjoy a leisurely coffee with the newspaper, but mostly the shock hits so hard that you pace around a lot and consider, in theory, doing laundry and buying a lamp. (Yesterday I ventured into this strange place called “the gym,” but the machines looked so alien I headed home and called the Mars Rover people to notify them I’ve found their missing equipment.)
For those who think this is a wonderful problem to have, I won’t argue that downtime is good, but it’s not that great if you’re simply in a vegetative state. Up until a week ago I was running around like a courier working on commission. Now I don’t know what to do with myself, despite having a hundred things I want to do. And I know that in another week’s time, it could all ramp up again, and I should use this gift of time with purpose and clarity.
But herein lies the tragedy of it all, or at least the irony. We work so hard to get ahead in our lives and careers, that when the spoils come, like time, it’s either so foreign to our senses or we’re too stupified to know what to do with it. This is not living. This is madness.
I’m going for a walk in Central Park on a Wednesday afternoon. The chance to do so is one of the reasons I chose a life that never involves an office. And I’m going to enjoy every blessed second of my time. My phone will be that thing not ringing next to the peeling paint.
For the Mineralava Musings, this is Edoardo Ballerini.