Don’t You Sometimes Want to Put Mayonnaise in the Library Drop Box? Me Neither.

But one woman did, and she got arrested.  Read her story.

Something about this seems fun to me.  And that’s a little concerning.

It may go back to my childhood when my father took me on a special father-daughter trip and then entertained me by dropping ice off a balcony.  We didn’t exactly aim at passersby but I also have to admit it was a pretty crowded area.

This condiment vandal, whose motive remains unknown, was not exclusively a mayo user. Sometimes she poured syrup, ketchup or corn syrup in the library book drop box.  And I wonder what was going on because people don’t just get out of bed one day and decide to do acts of vandalism.  I’m feeling compassion for the woman who acted out in this way.

So this got me thinking about things I enjoy doing that are probably obnoxious.  There are always the obvious ones at home, like putting a jelly jar back in the refrigerator with less than a teaspoon of actual jelly left in it, or leaving half-consumed glasses of water all over the house, or playing the Backstreet Boys when someone wants to hear Vivaldi.

But my favorite hobby is dropping pennies everywhere I go.  Or leaving them in little piles in strange places.  My theory (excuse?) is that children will be excited when they find them and can say, “Find a penny, pick it up.  All day long you’ll have good luck.”  But really, I just don’t like pennies and I feel gleeful over discarding them quietly or flinging them out of car windows in isolated spots.

Seriously, though, especially at this time of year when there’s a lot of togetherness, when people are cooped up indoors a lot, when there are expectations for how things should be… what are our coping mechanisms?

Is it enough to just take a time out and read in the other room?  Or take a drive?  Or do we mindlessly stuff our mouths with cookies before we realize we might just be a little overwhelmed?  Or drink an extra glass of wine or two?

I’m wondering if we all have so many requirements to “be sweet,” “act nice,” play the part, follow the rules, that sometimes we just snap and want to put mayonnaise down the library book drop, metaphorically speaking of course.

I’d like to advocate for intermediate steps that might be less dramatic; I’d like to suggest rolling with a sense of humor that allows us to acknowledge when the world is too much with us (or we with it).  I recommend (to myself) decompressing subtly… and keeping the mayonnaise where it belongs (on sandwiches of leftover turkey).

What do you do when you’re frazzled?  Are you there yet?

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~ by Cary on December 20, 2010.

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