Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Same Old (Stupid) Things

When I was a kid we had dogs. We also lived in the woods. And one year there were porcupines.
One dog in particular, Bibs, apparently had an irresistible urge to investigate those porcupines.
I remember at least a dozen occasions that year when we had to pull quills out of his nose. The first quill wasn't so bad, because he didn't know what was coming, but the second quill (and all subsequent quill-pulling-endeavors) involved multiple people holding him still so that someone could grab the quills one by one with pliers and pull them from his face.

I seem to have a propensity for burning myself in the kitchen (or occasionally at the iron). I have a phobia about the oven door flipping up and burning me (even though that has never happened), but maybe it's not an irrational one because I have found a lot of other unexpected ways to burn myself, so who knows, it could happen. Just a week ago I severely burned my finger tip making fudge, and while the blister is now gone, there is still a funny-feeling spot there, and it keeps me in mind of other burns I've had. Hot oil splashes, steam, toaster oven doors (that was just days before the fudge)...  The thing is, I'm not a generally accident-prone person, so it seems odd that I should burn myself so often.

But no more odd than that an otherwise not-unintelligent dog should stick his face into the wrong end of a porcupine again and again.

These thoughts have put me in mind of something that I think we all do, and that is to get stuck in a rut--a habit even--of doing the same stupid thing over and over. Perhaps it's yelling at your kids. Perhaps it's speeding on the highway. Perhaps it's neglecting your prayers. Perhaps it's procrastinating your homework. We know that these things are not good. We all know what we could (or should) do instead. But we don't do it.

So I have a challenge for us all today. Stop sticking your nose in the porcupine's tooshie. Pick one of those stupid things that you keep doing, and knock it off already. It takes time to bust a bad habit, I know, so that's why we're just picking one.

I'm not picking the burns by the way. I've got bigger things to worry about. Although if you ever hear of any burn-proof kitchen gloves (they'd have to go up to the elbow!) let me know, would you?


Mae said...

I also have an unnatural (and unfounded) fear of the oven door closing on me while I'm getting things in and out. I assume it's either from childhood tellings of Hantzel and Gretel or from toaster oven doors that DO spring back closed...

But just so you know, you're not alone. I have so many stupid things that I'm having a hard time picking one at the moment...Maybe I'll slow down so I stop running into things.

Katrina said...

Great post!

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