Hello? It’s Me Again Margaret…

Super extra special bonus points AND a gold star if you get the title reference. Also, If you do get the title reference please let me know in the comments, because I want to know that other people share my odd enjoyment.

So the Daily Prompt was an unknown phone call.

That didn’t really do much for me in and of itself, but it did get me thinking about phone calls. Which then randomly crossed streams (Don’t cross the streams. It would be bad.) with my previous post referencing Time Travel. Those two things randomly mutated into the following idea: What if you had a phone that could call anyone, anytime, whether they had a phone or not and it could translate for you?

So basically, you could talk to any person from any time period. No changing history here, but you would have unlimited access to the information contained within anyone’s head. Well, assuming they can communicate it in such a way that it makes sense to you. I have to imagine a random person calling Albert Einstein might have a little trouble understanding some of the physics-speak that he is likely to be spouting off.

Information Central

Information Central (Photo credit: pjern)

For someone like me, this is hitting the information jackpot. I’m talking Jed Clampett  finding oil in his backyard level of excitement here. You see, I’m kinda of an information/trivia nerd. I get a small bit of interest in a subject and then I spend 3 days voraciously devouring every pertinent scrap of information I can locate on the World Wide Web about whatever that happens to be. Now I’m not an academic, so I’m usually not particularly concerned with source quality here. Usually I start on Wikipedia and just go where the winds of stupidly useless trivial information take me.

So what this Time Phone(Copyright all mine. Patent pending, whatever else legal mumbo jumbo means this idea is MINE for whenever it does exist)means to someone like me, is that I can basically reference the original source for ANYTHING. If I happen to be reading about the paintings of Vincent Van Gogh, I can call that crazy Dutchman up and ask him about his painting style and how it relates to the way he chose to paint The Starry Night.

I’m thinking that I wouldn’t get much working or living done, ever. I would just sit around finding interesting things to research. Then I would research everything I could and call anyone that I needed more information from! I could call Piet Mondrian and ask him what the hell he was thinking painting all those stupid rectangles and lines and calling it art. I could call Leonardo Da Vinci up and ask him why he was so crazy/forward-thinking at the same time.

Those are just the applications for calling the past. I could call the future and find out if we still drive our own cars. I could call future kids and ask them if I was a terrible parent or not. Really, the possibilities here are endless.

Well I told you what I would do, what would you guys do with a Time Phone(My idea!)? Who would you call? What would you want to know?

I Aim To Please

I am a people pleaser.

I suppose this is something that I’ve known for quite awhile, but I’m only now beginning to realize what that really means. I’m not sure if it stems from my particularly intense desire for approval, or if I just never properly learned to say no. What I do know is not only do I fail to say no when I ought to, I somehow manage to volunteer for any number of things I’m not actually capable of, or have any real interest in.

It really is a problem, because at this point in my life, I ought to be able to politely decline a request or a favor. I might decline because I am too busy, or maybe I don’t have the particular skill set required to accomplish the request without significant additional time commitment to learn how. It’s possible I should decline because I am allowing myself to be taken advantage of. It’s also possible that I should decline because by agreeing, I’m actually allowing someone else to continue to ignore something they should be paying attention to.

What it really comes down to is that it’s beginning to become a problem for me. I set unrealistic goals for myself and then come down very hard on myself when they aren’t met. I guilt myself into feeling obligated to attend something or do something so that it becomes impossible to enjoy myself. I don’t want to do something, but I feel I ought to, and then I feel angry that I feel I’m only doing it because I’m guilty. It then becomes an impossible situation because I’m going to end up viewing it negatively no matter what.

It certainly doesn’t help that I tend to be negative and cynical. I’m not sure if that’s caused by my lack of patience, or if both the negativity and lack of patience are the result of some other underlying factor. What I really need to do is decide what is important to me, and begin to make active decisions according to that. If I feel a particular family gathering is not something I care to be a part of, I should politely decline attending, and be satisfied that I have made a decision for myself, based on what I believe to be important.

That’s all well and good, but it’s all a little bit easier said than done.

-Christopher