Friday, March 29, 2013

Classes, Funeral, Play

Dear Mom,

Study, homework, read, study, class, get up and do it all over again. That’s been my life. All work and no play makes Lynn a very dull girl—and that's been my thinking lately.

I attended the funeral mass for Uncle Bob—Dad’s brother-in-law. Uncle Bob’s oldest son got up to say a few words. A beautiful tribute. I had rummaged through my purse for my pen and notebook when my cousin said that his dad said something like, “When you stop playing, that’s when you become an old man.” Uncle Bob was 92, and even though I didn’t really know him other than what I've heard—he played right to the end.

Hearing this made me realize that I’m not playing at all. Although I've recently met with some friends for dinner. I also meet my critique pals every other week. There are a few other things I allow myself since I've been in school, but daily? I don’t play daily.

That made me think, what constitutes play? Enjoying what you’re doing? Yes? I mean, if you’re having fun, even if it’s so called work, then to me you’re playing.

I journal every morning—which I love and enjoy. Maybe I am playing every day.

If programming weren’t so frustrating and confusing to me most of the time, I might even consider that play. But not so much, yet.

That made me think of something else. (Oh, I can hear my husband, son and stepson now… oh here she goes… they're the ones who give me the most trouble about running my mouth) I suppose my chatting can be like a program that has an infinite loop – ha – I made an analogy with programming. Not surprising, I dream in code.

We had a mid-term final. This class is about an hour and a half long. After what seemed like ten minutes, some genius gets up because he’s finished. I tried not to panic. I was probably on question 3 (of 25). I finished after using the entire class time. I’ll be lucky if half are correct… yeah, and it was open book. Go figure.

Okay, back to my point. (Yes… an infinite loop.)

After the exam, I was feeling dumb again. How’d that kid answer all of those questions so quickly? Who knows really, and it’s not right for me to compare. Maybe he grew up with a computer in his mouth. Maybe that’s all he does in his spare time. I thought, put him in a kitchen next to me and we’ll see who’s the genius. He’ll still be breaking eggs while my soufflé is baking in the oven. Okay, not really because I don’t do soufflés, but most anything else. But that doesn’t mean geek genius is dumb… he’s just not as experienced in the kitchen. And it doesn’t mean I’m smarter either... just more experienced as a cook.

So that’s my point. None of us are dumb. Some of us apply ourselves more than others in certain things, and some of us have more experience in certain subjects than others. That’s what makes us all so unique and interesting.

Uncle Bob, I’m glad your son shared your words of wisdom to play.

Speaking of playing, take a look at Lavender Dreams and see what she’s been playing with…


  1. I think people have different gifts, Lynn, and if we keep comparing ourselves to others (and I'm talking about myself, too), we'll always come up short on some playing field.

    Why are you taking these two classes? For the grades or the experience?

    There are oodles of things you do better than anybody I know. And if you want me to list them, I will--complete with a rhyme scheme (but it won't be pretty ;).

  2. I have a computer geek genius in my house. I assure you that your premise is correct. He regularly burns his arm against the glowing orange oven coil while taking a tray of frozen potato skins or french toast sticks out. He can make one food for himself: a quesadilla made with frozen pre-cooked chicken strips, shredded cheese, and salsa.

  3. Nice to "see" you again, Lynn! You sound swamped...but good advice to take time to play...I need to do more real playing! Happy Easter to you and yours.

  4. You have a lot of insight and it's important to realize we are all different. I know how to play but I'm the sort of person that feels like they need to get ALL the work done before they play. I've had to try to change my thinking on this over the years...because I can never get caught up....and hence would never get to play. I love my sweet dollies! Thanks again, my friend! And enjoy your special weekend!

  5. Hi Lynn,

    You are so smart, and I admire you so much for going back to school for something outside of your normal area of expertise.

    That guy is probably going back to school to get credit for something that he has been doing since he was 2 years old ... I bet that he is jumping through the school hoops so that he can get paid more, and there is nothing wrong with that. My step-brother taught himself how to do computers and was hired at Microsoft (they didn't require a degree for true geeks!)

    Are you on spring break? I hope you get a chance to do something that is really fun for you!

    Love ya,

    Kathy M.

  6. Comparing oneself to others is definitely not good. Especially because we have a way of seeing what's good in others and then fall short in admitting we're just as good, selling ourselves short.

    I haven't really been playing much either. Nor will I next week when I have four consecutive 12-hour shifts in between regular 8-hour ones.
    But I can't wait for a friend of mine to come visit, and all I will do then is play and reassess my work and play balance!

  7. You make some good points in your loop-de-loop. :) One thing I will say is that the older I get the less likely I am to compare myself to others. Mostly because I've learned that what I perceive is usually not the reality underneath. Instead of asking myself, "Why is she so much more (fill in the blank) than me?" I'm more likely to ask, "I wonder if (fill in the blank) makes her happy?" and hope that it does. Also, your Uncle Bob was a smart man. Play keeps us young. Well, young-ish, anyway. LOL

  8. Your Uncle Bob must've lived an amazing life. I love the comment about the "genius" student being born with a computer in his mouth.

    I agree with Sioux that we all have different gifts. I've seen how talented you are with crafts and how thoughtful you are with home-made cards.

    I admire you for going back to school and taking on such a challenging subject.

    You are an amazing woman!

  9. I'm sorry about your Uncle Bob. He sounds like a pretty smart guy to me. But then, you have talent all over the place in your family....

  10. Playing every day sounds like wonderful advice. I'm going to try and keep that gem tucked away.

    Lynn, I'm sure you will do very well in your class. Just keep plugging away!

    Critter Alley

  11. Lynn, your entire family is talented, and your gifts and talents are endless. But don't expect THIS right brained old gal to decipher codes or numbers. I am so proud of you for learning something new. I think that playing with words is one of the things that makes me happy, and journaling for you is your form of "play". Do what makes you happy.


Thanks for commenting. I don't always comment back, but I do appreciate it.