It started out innocently enough. I began to think at parties
now and then to loosen up. Inevitably though, one thought led
to another, and soon I was more than just a social thinker.
I began to think alone - to relax I told myself - but I
knew it wasn't true. Thinking became more and more important to
me, and finally I was thinking all the time.
I began to think on the job. I knew that thinking and employment
don't mix, but I couldn't stop myself.
I began to avoid friends at lunchtime so I could read Thoreau
and Kafka. I would return to the office dizzied and confused,
asking What is it exactly we are doing here?
Things weren't going so great at home either. One evening I
had turned off the TV and asked my wife about the meaning of
life. She spent that night at her mother's.
I soon had a reputation as a heavy thinker. One day the boss
called me in. He said Son, I like you, and it hurts me to say
this, but your thinking has become a real problem. If you don't
stop thinking on the job, you'll have to find another. This
gave me a lot to think about.
I came home early after my conversation with the boss.
Honey, I confessed, I've been thinking...
I know you've been thinking she said, and I want a
But Honey, surely it's not that serious.
It is serious, she said, lower lip aquiver. You think
as much as college professors, and college professors don't
make any money, so if you keep on thinking we won't have any
That's a faulty syllogism I said impatiently, and she
began to cry.
I'd had enough. I'm going to the library I snarled as I
stomped out the door.
I headed for the library, in the mood for some Nietzsche, with
a PBS station on the radio. I roared into the parking lot and
ran up to the big glass doors... they didn't open. The library
To this day, I believe that a Higher Power was looking out for
me that night.
As I sank to the ground clawing at the unfeeling glass,
whimpering for Zarathustra, a poster caught my eye. Friend,
is heavy thinking ruining your life? You probably recognize
that line. It comes from the standard Thinkers Anonymous
Which is why I am what I am today: a recovering thinker. I never
miss a TA meeting. At each meeting we watch a non-educational video;
last week it was Porky's. Then we share experiences about
how we avoided thinking since the last meeting. I still have my
job, and things are a lot better at home. Life just seemed... easier,
somehow, as soon as I stopped thinking.
No, this isn't original, I didn't write it, though I did make
a few minor changes. I wish I knew who wrote the original so
that I could give credit where due. Though humorous, I sometimes
find it disturbingly appropriate. And I've done some of these
things! I have sought lunchtime hiding places so that I could
read undisturbed; for some reason, people seem to think that
if you're reading, you're not doing anything, and they feel
free to interrupt with "Hey, how about that <local football
team> game last night...".
13 Julio 2001 modifita.