Some wonderful, kindred souls out there like to tell me that I have O.C.D, or a semi-addictive personality (What do they know? I’ve never had an eating or caffeine addiction. And, I’m not about to get seduced by horse racing). Now, what appears to them as obsessive, appears to me as a love and desire for routine.
Elizabeth Gilbert, is a wonderful writer and communicator, in her books she invites into the life of Felipe, her Latin lover (The best ones right?). In the dialogues she talks about Felipe being a wonderful and terrible traveling partner. He has an absolute desire to settle down and stay put, but, it doesn’t matter where. In fact, his ability to settle in routine allows him to live anywhere. And, when he isn’t allowed to have his routine, he gets a bit cranky. I resonated with this on a profound and intimate level.
Recently, my routine has completely been pulled from underneath to me. Not sleeping in routine places(friends houses), taking different routes to work (Eden Prairie & Maple Grove instead of Carver), forced to eat at new restaurants (I lost Subway & Q’doba, and, am forced to eat at Jimmy John’s and Chipotle), lost my daily relaxing methods (Video Games, my bed), my walking paths (Carver walking path to Purgatory Creek in Eden Prairie) and now my routine 4-5 hours of sleep has been reduced to 2-3.
I’m the guy who will listen to the same CD hundreds of times through until something gets better (Recently, its been Neon Tree’s- Habits, & The Gaslight Anthem-American Slang). I like to play the same Video Games (MLB & NBA 2k10, Madden 2010 & Left 4 Dead 2). I read authors books in bulks (I’m reading 4 books by Dan Allender). I don’t like to have a lot of people in my life, i’m not super outgoing and enjoy solitude, so I talk to the same 5-6 people every day.
Now, I see the image of me in your mind, and, YES!!, its true. I’m the guy in line at your favorite Caribou or Subway who is having a mid-life crisis in line because his favorite item has just been taken off the menu.
Having had this happen, I’m trying not be a sissy, prissy young adult (Epic Fail!). I’m trying to be like Harold Crick, the wonderful character played by Will Ferell in the movie Stranger Than Fiction. His routine was ripped from underneath him by a narrator who was in his head and was trying to kill him. Instead of continuing to brush each of his teeth 40 times in each direction every morning and evening, he dated the punk-rock, anarchist bakery owner played by Maggie Gylenhall, he buys a Fender Strat and begins to roll with the punches.
Easier said than done. At least for me. I’m flexible (within my inflexibility). So needless to say, I am learning from Harold Crick these days, trying to embrace what appears to me as something that can’t be embraceable. I’m trying to find a routine in my non-routine.