Tell the Truth

Look me in the eye and tell me you accomplished a lot yesterday.

That’s what this guy is saying.

Try telling me you bought gifts, he says…

Or finished the holiday card…

Or finally got done trimming the tree.

Guys like him are always talking like this, always acting so superior, just because THEY may have spent the whole day gathering nuts.


I didn’t spend the day shopping OR trimming OR addressing the envelopes for that holiday card, though all of those tasks go unfinished.

Instead I laundered 8 sets of curtains, washed the windows they belong to, sewed a slip cover for a chair everyone else in the family is happy to bring to the Free Stuff table at the dump and ate a pint of ice cream.

It’s a stressful time of year.

And sometimes, sometimes the only way to throw up a barricade against that stress is to work on something – anything – in no way related to the tasks you’re supposed to be working on.

Human nature, what can we say?

5 thoughts on “Tell the Truth

  1. Less this doing. More just being. Somewhere Thoreau is nodding, chewing on a blade of grass, his hat tipped over his brow, lounging against a tall pine. What can we say? Human nature? I’m not so sure Terry. Human conditioning, methinks. A cultural thing. Or as psychology names it; Conditioned Behavior. Especially in America. Hurry. Worry. Do this. Do that. Produce. Succeed. Accomplish. Be “Somebody.” You know you are a contemplative and a poet when you can reply to the question: “What did you get done today?” By responding, “Nothing. I got nothing done and I feel great.” Maybe the thing is to take a step back and ask: “Can this wait?” or “Will it really alter the day or the Holiday experience if I cease from feeling obligated to do, do, do..?”

    Who places the demand on me? Some people have to be doing, it’s an escape from silence, where we confront more important things, like our true self and actual situation in life..Is it doing things or are the things doing me?

    Who’s in charge here anyway? Am I a busy scurrying squirrel or a wise lounging cat?

    “Slow down, you move to fast. You gotta make the mornin’ last, just kicking around the cobble stones, lookin’ for fun and feelin’ groovy..”

    Today, I (felt) that I had to pack for a trip, send cards and some gifts, stock the cat food, visit a sick person and a dozen other things..then..then I shrugged and let it all go to lay outdoors on my patio couch, listening to the water trickle down my fountain while watching the golden leaves fall like floating feathers from the big maple on the front lawn..soon, Geronimo, my baby cat was sleeping on my chest and I thought how precious stillness is. This now moment. The other stuff is not a will get done after I take care of my soul. The chief task, nourishing the spirit.

    Whatever happened to just being still?
    Whatever happened to makin’ the mornin’ last and feelin’ groovy?

    It’s a choice.

  2. Hi Terry, I too am having Christmas at my house this year. (read thirty+ people,… hungry, messy, loud people) Take care of yourself please. Merry Christmas Terry, from your friend that you have never met, Chris

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