Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Boring Thoughts

“I’m bored!” In response to my statement I heard “Don’t let Reverend Metcalfe hear you say that. He said he doesn’t enjoy the company of bored people.” I was in my early teens at the time and, because I respected Reverend Metcalfe, I began to think about boredom.

Many years later, I asked a psychologist what it meant when a person is often bored and he replied “anger”.

I’ve heard that some subjects are “boring” but I’ve decided that’s not true. Anything and anyone is interesting. It appears boredom is a choice. I can choose to be bored (lack of interest) when confronted with fascinating people and subjects. In other words, boredom can be used to describe me but not the world around me.

Over the years, I’ve learned that boredom is inversely proportional to the amount of effort I expend. The more I research a subject – any subject – the more interesting it becomes.

At present, I’m reading “Seduced by Hitler, The Choices of a Nation and the Ethics of Survival”. Sounds fascinating, doesn’t it! Over the last twenty-five years, I’ve probably read more about World War II than all other subjects combined. I’ve read various perspectives – American, German, Japanese and British soldiers and airmen, a Russian doctor, German intellectuals, Goebbels’ diaries, Speer’s books, Shirer’s class “The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich” (1500 pages), the memories of a thirteen year old girl who lost her father and both brothers. The more I read, the more questions I have and the more intrigued I become.

Why am I thinking about boredom? Because I’ve been reading about several subjects that many people might find boring but they are fascinating. I’m compiling “a list of at least 250 items that anyone can implement to reduce energy consumption, to protect the environment and to give future generations a chance.” In addition to some ideas posted as comments to an earlier post, Anonymous Julie and Willow emailed ideas and I’ve been reading and researching them. It’s fascinating! The more I read and learn, the more interesting it becomes. (I hope to have the list ready soon.)

Recently, I asked someone “Are you reading anything interesting?” and he replied, “No, not really.” His response made me wonder if he was angry about something. How could an intelligent and educated person not be reading something of interest to him. As I began to think about it, I realized I’ve never seen him excited, motivated, or eager to talking about some subject. He appears to be bored with life. How sad!

When I was in my early twenties, I thought old age and retirement must be boring. Now, it seems very, very attractive. So much to see, do, read and learn. I can’t wait because I definitely won't be bored!


Blogger Gaye said...

I agree that boredom is a choice; I also agree that boredom is an offshoot of anger.

3/14/2006 08:18:00 AM  
Blogger Buffalo said...

Never equated boredom with anger. Not sure that I agree with you and Gaye on that one - and I should no better than to disagree with her.

3/14/2006 10:24:00 AM  
Blogger kathy said...

interesting! i too never equated boredom with anger.

3/14/2006 01:29:00 PM  
Blogger anonymous julie said...

Interesting! I, too, have never thought of boredom as related to anger. But definitely as related to disinterest. Another observation; when I am bored, it's often difficult to become engaged, and then I get frustrated because I am bored, but have too much inertia to rouse myself to activity.

I can't WAIT to retire - there is so much to learn and I'll have more time to do it! Right now I've so many interests that I have to manage them, laying some aside for a season to keep up with others. (So aikido, or at least a beggining class, is slated for fall...) What I really want, though, is to be paid to do what I love and what interests me. Halfway there, sorta...

Looking forward to the 250 list...

3/14/2006 02:25:00 PM  
Blogger Whitesnake said...

trouble with old age is......that ya should have done this stuff when ya was younger...thats why people in the elder years find so much to do....as for boredom and anger.....hmmmm ...I dont get angry.........but I do get bored...
Not sure why.......maybe I should be wondering????

3/14/2006 11:13:00 PM  
Blogger Buffalo said...

P.S. I do know the difference between "know" and "no."

3/15/2006 12:31:00 PM  

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