Change of Scenery

Fueled by bananas and sunshine…

It would have been a sacrilege to write about this topic from the regular confines of my bedroom/office, so I picked up the leather-backed journal, and relocated to a park in town.

My field of view is flooded by many unsuspected stimuli.  Off in the distance, Jews fill the temple, observing Yom Kippur.  Some have shelled out upwards of $350 to obtain entry into this place of worship, but that’s a story for a future post.

The park is filled mostly with children (its 1:15 PM) and their mothers, milfs and soccer moms alike.  You’d struggle to find a vehicle smaller (or older) than a 2005 Ford Explorer in the lot, but this is in fact suburbia.  I think my 1995 Pathfinder takes the cake.

I believe it was songstress Sheryl Crow who said “A change would do you good.”  Too often, we fall into patterns of comfort, repeating and taking solace in that which we are accustomed to.  Whether it be boy/girlfriends, jobs, geographic locations, or the same cocktails at the same bar every Friday night, these “comfort traps” ensnare us into complacency.  I will agree that comfort can be a great thing; routines can keep us productive, and physically and emotionally safe.  But breaking these routines and practices every so often can and will yield new insight.

I believe most of us are guilty of thinking that we know more than we actually do. Socrates says, in Apology, that “I do not think I know what I do not know.”  It is this, he claims, that makes him a wiser man.  I was sure this park would be a peaceful sanctuary, and instead, I am pleasantly distracted by the laughter of children, and wind kicking up the pages of my book.  My favorite songs aren’t playing in the background, but as a daddy long-legs crawls up my ankle, I feel more attached to my present location.  When you make the choice to be consciously aware of your surroundings, you are forced to think and act in a different way.  You can experience live human interaction which would have been impossible at home, alone.

Like many things in life, it’s important to dream big, but start small.  If you’re a beer drinker, try a cocktail you’ve never tasted before.  Take a new route home from work.  Don’t remain in a boring relationship with him or her because of convenience and easy sex.  Instead of watching the news at home, take a drive and catch it on the radio.  Get out, live, and embrace the unexpected.  It is scary at first, but will make you stronger.  When you get comfortable being uncomfortable, the world becomes an easier place to thrive.

Change the scene, change yourself.

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2 responses to “Change of Scenery

  1. Amen. People are so resistant to change whether it’s at the workplace, in their personal life, etc. If only it were that easy to pick up and change the things that we are so accustomed to, I bet life would be much more interesting!

  2. So this entry brings to mind something Brandon Boyd of Incubus once wrote in his published diary “From the Murks of the Sultry Abyss.” Talking about his fascination with riding the elevator with strangers he said, “It is a comfort disaster waiting to happen. And in a culture so hell bent on comfort it seems to me a nice, weekender way to exercise my subversive side!”

    I have vowed to myself that I will, as Brian has suggested, put myself in more uncomfortable situations–with the goal of learning in mind of course. AND I have been in an elevator plenty of times where I recognize this bubbling urge within me to speak to the “strangers” i am journeying with–but never have i thought about it so clearly as an opportunity! I mean, how many times a day do I ride an elevator? My school requires it–so many! Each elevator experience should and can be an opportunity preparing and shaping us for future uncomfortable situations which each of us will inevitably face in our lives. If we practice enough, we can overcome that discomfort as Brian already suggested. Now, I have a real reason NOT to take the stairs! Thanks Brian!

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