Body and Mind

I've begun to realize in the past few weeks that my mind and my body are a perfect match. Some people are built for speed, some are built for endurance. I fall squarely into the second category. This is one of those things I've always known about my body and my mind as separate entities, but it wasn't until very recently that I understood how well my brain and my muscles fit together. As I said, I'm built for endurance, not speed.

Believe it or not, I sort of enjoy my slow 'n' steady, tortoise-like qualities. I may not be able to run a four minute mile, but I can walk a steady pace up and down mountain paths with a 40-pound pack for 10 hours straight. Perhaps I'm not the best at witty comebacks, but I have an attention span that boggles the imagination. I can concentrate on the same task for hours on end, without needing (or even wanting) a break.

Also, once I know something, I know it forever. It may take me a few more minutes to catch on, but my memory is like a steel trap. Sometimes I wish I didn't remember so many little assininities, but you'd be surprised how often the size of a curling rink comes up in conversation.

I feel like I've often (especially in high school) made friends with the sprinters. People who are busy busy busy all the time (Laura Hess ;o), racing from one activity to the next. Never content to just sit, but rather wanting to find some action.

Yet, in spite of the people around me, I am perfectly content to be a plodder, one who moseys along the path of life. All I need for a perfect Saturday is a good book that merits ten straight hours of reading or a lovely path through the wilderness that merits ten straight hours of walking or even a comfortable seat from which I can watch the hustle and bustle of the world go by me.

Try it some day...maybe you'll like it.

Are Kids Too Wired For Their Own Good?

My title for this blog is also the title of the cover story for this week's issue of Time Magazine. Generally, within a half hour of pulling the latest issue of Time out of the mailbox I have thrown it in the garbage without a single glance at anything other than the cover. But this particular topic caught my interest.

Right now I am watching Pride and Prejudice and blogging (obviously ;) and am well aware that writing is taking precedence over watching the movie. In the article, they talk about how high school and college kids would be not only blogging and watching a DVD, but quite probably trying to do homework and IMing and listening to their iPod at the same time. (The very thought of watching a movie and listening to music at the same time makes me want to shriek; I can't stand having two noises on which to concentrate; it actually makes me physically uncomfortable).

Is it a generational thing or am I the only person born after 1980 who hates multi-tasking? Two things at a time is enough for me. Any more than that and I must give up one or more of the activities I am pursuing. For instance, if someone called me right now, I would definitely not be able to continue blogging and I would most likely pause the movie because I get distracted too easily and would soon be watching the movie rather than listening to my caller.

I love my iPod; the ability to carry my entire music collection with me and enjoy it at will is wonderful, but I've noticed that there are times during my day that I just have to take the headphones out and enjoy the silence. Even when I'm on the Metro, I sometimes prefer the noise of the people around me and the train to the noise I have purchased and stored on my shiny new Apple product.

Apparently, multi-tasking is not really concentrating on more than one thing at a time, anyway. Multi-tasking is like much toggling between windows on a computer screen; one is actually doing one task at a time for a very brief period before moving on to the next task. Through studies of this behavior, they have shown that multi-tasking is deterimental to productivity. "When people try to perform two or more related tasks either at the same time or alternating rapidly between them, errors go way up, and it takes far longer-often double the time or more-to get the job done than if they were done sequentially..."

Technology is our friend. I love computers and iPods and digital cameras and cell phones (even though I rarely use mine), but I also love laying in my bed, listening to the birds and trees outside my window and reading a good book for hours on end or sitting in a beautiful park watching people and listening to their noises.

It will be a challenge for our generation to come up with strategies for keeping our children from becoming glued to their portable technological devices. I guess it will start with not buying lots of gadgets for them and end with all of us leading by example by doing our best to live balanced lives.

Well, I'm going to get back to my movie...maybe I'll even start from the beginning again because Keira Knightley deserves everyone's undivided attention.


I'm always tired these days.
I'm sure it's a combination of not eating healthy food,
eating far too much,
and going from exercising almost every day
to never exercising at all.
I come up with all sorts of reasons (read "excuses")
for not going to the FREE gym,
but I know it's all unhealthy rationalization.
Sometimes I wonder if I'm afraid to really succeed.
I was well on my way to my goal weight...
but now I have lost half the ground I had gained.

I just have to go to the gym.
I just have to buy food to take for lunch instead of eating Subway or ABP or McDonald's every day.
I just have to cook for myself instead of eating out.
What's so hard about that?
It's not like I have all sorts of other valuable activities filling my time.

I'm not going to resolve to do anything.
I'm just going to do it.
Being tired is not something I'm going to do anymore!

Too Much TV?

I spend a lot of time watching television. Perhaps I am overestimating, but it's possible that I watch 40+ hours of TV a week. I watch Lost, CSI, Law and Order:SVU, Project Runway, Gilmore Girls, Alias, MythBusters, American Idol, Supernatural, The O.C., Without a Trace, What Not to Wear, Best Week Ever, Grey's Anatomy, Desperate Housewives, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Miami Ink, news, plenty of Food Network and other random shows and movies. Discussing television has become a way of life for me. My roommate and I discuss the Gilmore Girls as if they were real people. We were terribly upset when Meredith slept with George. We have favorite commercials (who could not love that Nextel commercial?! Sometimes we rewind and watch it again.). The words, "I saw this show the other day..." come out of my mouth far too frequently.

I've known for quite some time that I was a TV junkie, but I didn't realize just how bad it was until Tuesday. I was sitting at lunch with some co-workers, discussing movies and stuff. The show "24" came up in conversation and I seamlessly launched into trends in TV today.

Me: Have any of you ever noticed how many male leads are named "Jack" these days.
Everyone else: ...
Me: I mean, Jack from "24," Jack from "Lost," Jack from "Alias," Jack from "Law & Order," and Jack from "Without a Trace."
Everyone else: ummm...yeah, guess you're right.
Ross: You really do watch too much TV.

It will get better when I go to seminary. I promise!