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The one with all the (totally normal) thoughts
Can’t I make plans and then back out at the last minute and we just all accept that that’s a thing we all do?
Can’t I say something in a group setting and then obsess over it the entire next day wondering whether I just offended someone and, if so, whether I should apologize or whether they even noticed (or cared) that I said that something—so I would either be legitimately apologizing or else apologizing for nothing—until I finally convince myself that we are all adults here so none of us should ever be offended and, in fact, I am never offended by something a friend says so maybe that’s the kind of friend I want to have anyway because then I can just be free to be myself?
Can’t I irrationally cry out of nowhere because it’s COVID and my period and I have determined in my head that my husband must be mad at me because I left the oven on and my boss must hate me because he responded to my really long email with “ok” and no one is answering me on Slack so why do I even try and my husband didn’t hear any of those thoughts in my head and determined in his own head that we’re buying a Jeep this week and didn’t he know that everything was totally falling apart and didn’t I know that we were going to buy a Jeep this week but neither of us know these things because we are both trapped in our own set of AirPods listening to our own separate soundtracks and laughing at slightly different times about slightly different things as we spiral into our deepest fears (in my case) and deepest desires (in my husbands case) until we take out our AirPods and realize that everything is actually perfectly ok and were not really going to buy a Jeep and that was all just a hypothetical thing we did in our heads for a while so now we can just eat dinner and be happy and talk about how grateful we are to live such a beautiful life?
Can’t I get scared to go up to my attic because there might be a little old woman sitting in the back corner with a spinning wheel and a black cloak and she has probably been living up here for six months without us ever knowing and maybe that’s what has been making all those sounds all this time and then I turn on the lights and it’s totally fine and nothing irrational is up here and there’s only the thing I came up here to get and that all makes perfect sense?
Can’t I go skiing until it’s dark out and then I get really lost until I stumble upon a small cabin in the woods and then since I’m about to hit hypothermia I decide it’s totally fine for me to break in the window and start myself a fire to warm up and there’s a note on the fridge with a bunch of phone numbers and one of them says “mom” so I call to let her know that I’m using her son’s or daughter’s house for the night but that I totally intend to pay for all the damage—but then I realize that I’m still skiing and it’s still daylight so all of that was just a strange little tangent my mind took all the way to the very end?
And don’t all of us have thoughts like this some (or all) of the time and if that’s true then are every single one of us headcases or are we just human and that’s what separates us from the deer we pass on our skis who are only concerned about whether or not we are going to eat them while we are having full-on existential crisis’ about our jobs and whether we’re ever going to be social again and whether we even want to and whether or not not being able to open a pickle jar means we’re already losing our grip strength at 36-years-old and we need to start working out our hands?
And if we all have so many more things happening in our heads than what actually happens out loud then no one ever really knows us all the way and isn’t that kind of sad but also kind of necessary because people don’t need to hear every odd thing that pops into our heads because we have to admit it can get pretty strange in there and not all of it is actually relevant to our lives and most of it is just random things that happen in our minds completely of their own volition?
And isn’t it amazing that our minds can be so imaginative and that what “imaginative” even means is that this crazy psychedelic stuff occurs in our brains and that by having those psychedelic things occur in our brains we can invent whole other worlds and write books out of nowhere and design paper dolls from scratch because that’s the kind of stuff our crazy imaginations come up with?
Maybe it’s just me. But maybe, as I sometimes discover when I’m talking to my sisters or my friends or my coworkers, there is an intricate inner life that all of us have but that no one ever really knows about. And if we’re all doing it, then maybe that’s just normal? And if that’s just normal then how crazy is that?
These are just a few of the thoughts I had while I was nordic skiing through the woods last weekend. Do you have any thoughts to share on the matter? Leave a comment below or join the discussion on Discord.
Until next Sunday,
P.S. Share my newsletter with a friend and I’ll send you strange gifts. Like these:
I was absolutely obsessed with last week’s Rége-Jean Page episode of SNL. They did all the Bridgerton jokes, of course, but I am most obsessed with this music video that is absolutely what was going on during our month of COVID. And also this intense deconstruction of the song Driver’s License that sums up my thought process about everything.
Are we all obsessed with Bad Bunny after his SNL performance/music video with Rosalia? I mean, wow.
This article is the reason why I don’t really feel like moving to New York City and trying to get a job making $50k to work for a big publication like The Atlantic or The New York Times, just to say that I am a very prestigious writer.
This article about how we might not be able to reproduce anymore because of all the chemicals.
I just finished the book Gingerbread and it is one of the best books I have ever read. Highly recommend if you’re looking for something surreal and strange and just a treat to read.
Twitter announced this new super follow thing and it is very interesting to me because this could be a huge opportunity for us writers when it rolls out. But since it’s not here yet, I’m back to using Substack with the option of moving to a Twitter stack if it turns out to be amazing in the future.
Writing goals this week
Book one: I did a lot of research on how to publish my novel online—here’s a Twitter thread that explains all the things I tried that didn’t really work. As it turns out, I’m just going to publish my book on Substack and make life easy on myself. This is why we’re back to Substack. Hooray! I am also still looking for an illustrator, but I did find a printer. So we’re on our way!
Book two: I have a working second chapter that I’m hoping to polish and finish this week.
Articles: Wrote this newsletter.