Saturday, March 2, 2013

Only Boring People are Ever Bored

How is it even possible, in this world of smart phones and free wifi and and gossip magazines thousands upon thousands of books you get to read for free at the library (and Internet access there too!) and space exploration and the thousand thousand other things that are fascinating and scintillating and titillating, is it even remotely possible for a person to ever, even for a moment, succumb to boredom?

I drove my teachers crazy in middle school.  It's all I had going for me at the time, being the obnoxious class clown with a captive audience (all of whom, I'm sure, were thoroughly sick of my jokes).  One teacher had given me detention so many times that instead of setting a time limit on it he told me "Stare at this wall until you get bored."  He checked in with me every so often.  "Are you bored yet?"  My answer?  "No."  He had been one of the first to say "Only boring people are bored," in my life and if there is one thing I was not it was boring.  In part, I was just being contrary and defiant.  Like hell I would admit to being bored, even if I had been.  But I was being truthful too.  I was writing poems in my head, classifying the color of the wall, finding patterns in the textured paint, reflecting on an emotional section of a book I was reading, thinking about all the things going on in my life, wondering what my friends and family were doing, singing myself my favorite songs.  It went on for at least 45 minutes.  Every 5 minutes he'd ask "Are you bored yet?" and I would answer "No, I think this is cerulean, this color.  Do you know the first verse of 'Californication'?"  He eventually admitted to himself, and, indirectly, to me that he was tired of being there and thought he had made his point and we left for the day, the last ones to leave the school.

And I had been staring at a boring, plain, medium blue wall in silence as punishment for squeezing in one too many puns at my teacher's expense.

What the hell excuse do any of us have for lamenting about our lack of occupied status?  If you're bored go to Wikipedia and hit "Random Article."  Learn something.  Find a subject you're interested in.  Read a book, go for a walk, count shooting stars, ponder existence or mortality or the meaning of life.  Question your religion.  Recommit yourself to your beliefs.  Wonder what it would be like to be someone very different.

Here's an idea.  Every time you're tempted to whine "I'm so bored!" donate $10 to the local library, education fund or to yourself, to buy a book.  And quit being so boring!
I found this picture on the "I fucking love science" Facebook page and the above picture at


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