In my late afternoon doldrums, odd, sometimes disconnected thoughts come into my head.
For example, I was sitting at my desk at work thinking about Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, for reasons I can only say, as above, was indeed a disconnected thought, and I was about to make a comment to one of my younger colleagues, when something prompted me to ask if she had ever read it or perhaps had seen the movie? She replied, that no, she hadn’t but she knew it was a classic.
My only recourse at that point was to feel disappointed because any quip would have absolutely no meaning for her, and in my doldrums, I just did not want to waste perfectly good doldrumatic energy for which all I would get would be a blank stare, or since she is a conscientious colleague, a polite smile pasted over a blank stare.
Nevertheless, I momentarily had a strong urge to go pilfer a white hospital towel from one of the medical units. But since I am both known and reasonably well liked by the nursing staff, I wouldn’t even have to be sneaky about it. I could just ask for a towel, and the only response would probably be, How many would you like? So, with no possible excitement or guilt to have as a reward, I decided what’s the use? That is a direct violation of Ford Prefect’s (Adams’ galactic safety patrol shaman) most important rule to never travel the universe without a towel, but the knowledge that if I did need to travel the universe I could secure a towel at a moment’s notice seemed to suffice.
I thought, perhaps, I could relieve some of my doldrum ennui by checking if my favorite New York Times columnist, Paul Krugman, had posted some new provocative comment on his blog, “The Conscience of a Liberal.” He hadn’t. Well, he had posted a one-liner about being in St. Petersburg and having a bad case of the sniffles, so not to expect much from him in the blog department.
Somehow, in the space of about five minutes, I was back to feeling disappointed a second time. Not dissimilar to a certain chronically depressed robot in the aforementioned H2G2. A new fractal thought occurred to me that since the Nobel Prize Laureate, Dr. Krugman, was probably attending a conference of world-renown economists, what was a group of economists called? You know, like in that old Victorian parlor game where they listed different categories of animals, such as a pack of lions or a quiver of cobras. A quiver of cobras?
The first thing that popped into my head was maybe the good professor was speaking in code, and that he was secretly telling us that he was with “a sniffle of economists.” I’ll admit, I smiled at my own cleverness; but though some would say I got it exactly right–about economists–I’m pretty certain if we were aiming for satire, we could do better–especially about economists.
Satire, however, is a common companion of the doldrums. Immediately two more apparently nonsequitorish examples flashed into my consciousness. One was the title of this blog post: A Neti Pot of Tea Partiers. We all know that one brews tea in a teapot. A Neti Pot often has a similar shape, but a much, much different function. Look it up.
But my best one, with satire smugly shaking hands with my afternoon doldrums, in the finest tradition of Rachel Maddow, was:
An emesis of Becks.
I can’t think of a reason to try and top that. I doubt Rachel could, either. Today, anyway.