attention please

There have been many times in my life when I’ve suspected I must have some kind of attention deficit disorder. Just now, for instance, just as I was about to start typing this post, I noticed a small round mark on the table, and started scratching and rubbing at it instead. To be fair, I was thinking about how to start this post as I was rubbing away, but it kind of illustrates my point. 

And even as I started typing, I happened to get a glance of the evening sky outside the window. At the time that I’m writing this, it’s about sunset, and the window in question is facing east; so the sky I’m seeing is a lovely soft purple, not the fiery orange and pink you get on the western horizon at this time. I suppose all of this does not seem like it’s really important, but, for as long as I can remember, my favourite colour has always been orange, particularly that fiery orange of sunsets, so it’s kind of symbolic, I guess, that I’ve come to appreciate this soft purple that appears on the opposite side of the sky – the side that would usually be at my back.

Of course, this isn’t really a recent thing.

Last year when I went to Tasmania, and watched the sun set over the sea on the north coast of the island, I really felt the world was a wondrous place. And from my vantage point, unobstructed by sky-scrapers, high rises, or even by tall trees, I marvelled at how the orange on the western horizon transitioned into the purple on the eastern horizon. Since then, seeing the sky at sunset often reminds me of that evening, sitting on the rocks up at Low Head. Sometimes the sight (and the memory) brings calm and serenity; sometimes it stirs up a lot of emotion.

But this isn’t really the point of this post – I just had to explain why I was distracted by the view of the sky outside. And maybe it’s not really symbolic of anything at all – not of any great change in me – and maybe I have a tendency to find meaning where there is none, but… there it is. Make of it what you will.

Funnily enough, though, the thing that prompted this post also relates to a window – another eastern-facing window, but this time upstairs, and early in the morning, rather than late in the day.

Sometimes when I brush my teeth, I leave the bathroom, and go wandering around the house, or just go and sit somewhere. One morning, probably a few weeks ago now, I was sitting on my bed as I brushed my teeth, and I’d pulled up the blinds so that I could look out the window.

The sun had already cleared the horizon, so the view wasn’t spectacular in that sense, but there are hills and houses and trees, which give the eye plenty to admire, scrutinise, or simply to rest on. Then, of course, there was the beautiful, clear blue sky. Yet, with all this in front of me, the one thing that actually caught my eye and held my attention was a single thread of a spider’s web, attached between two points that I could not determine, but in such a way that the thread ran horizontally across the window, and was right in my line of sight.

Such a small and almost indiscernible thing, and yet I could not take my eyes off it. Several times, I looked away to the view beyond, but, again and again, my gaze drifted back to the thread. And it wasn’t that there was a spider or anything else interesting on it (I should probably make perfectly clear that the thread was outside and not inside the house).

I was simply entranced, I think, by the way the sun was reflecting off it.

While writing this post, night has well and truly fallen, and my mind has gone off on a bunch of different tangents; and this is why it takes so long for me to write blog posts sometimes. Just out of interest / for fun, one of the tangents my mind wandered down just now was to do with a can of creamed corn I bought today:

I did some grocery shopping this afternoon, and randomly decided to buy some creamed corn because I’d been thinking about using creamed corn in a muffin type thing, and, as luck would have it, it was on special at the supermarket. Anyway, the first can I picked up was badly dented, which I guess puts some people off, but it made me smile, and I did not hesitate to put it in my basket. My past self would’ve rejected it and picked up another can, but I recently saw a postcard on Post Secret in which someone said they always buy the dented cans because they feel sorry for them (or something to that effect).

At the time that I read that person’s secret, it did make me smile (inwardly, if not outwardly as well) but it also made me feel bad that I was someone who rejected dented cans for no good reason. I was inspired, then, to be like this person: someone who’s accepting, non-judgemental and not superficial (even if it’s just to inanimate objects like cans of corn).

I just wanted to finish this post by saying, in my defence, that I do feel like I’ve had a lot going on this year, so maybe there’s been a lot on my mind, and hence a lot of things for my mind to jump between, and maybe also explaining its tendency to settle on simple things like the spider’s thread or the spot on the table.

I’ve also realised that I’ve gotten myself into the habit of posting twice a week on quite a regular basis, but I don’t think I can continue this, and will probably go back to posting just once a week. I mean, between daydreaming, getting distracted and wandering down tangents, I don’t have a lot of spare time.

But, who knows, sparks of inspiration can appear anywhere; and if there’s an abundance of sparks and sufficient time to fan those into actual blog posts, I could very well go back to more frequent blogging.

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7 thoughts on “attention please

  1. I saw that Post Secret, too! I always feel bad for inanimate objects– like the fork at the bottom of the pile that never gets used. (I’m strange, I know.) I enjoyed your stream of consciousness-esque post. I like the thought, above, of all the beautiful things you might miss without being distracted.

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