Here’s what I learned: It doesn’t take long for the thin veneer of civilization to corrode.These are the things that have fallen away for me in just a few days of living alone:

  • Showering daily
  • Looking in the mirror
  • Leaving the house
  • Anything resembling an eating plan
  • A sleep schedule
  • Wearing a bra
  • Looking at a clock

On the other hand, there’s been a sharp uptick in certain other activities:

  • Procrastination
  • Silent weeping, mostly related to TV watching
  • Frigging around

I checked online for symptoms of depression and except for those related to personal hygiene (and really, it’s only me and the dog and the dog doesn’t mind) I don’t fit the profile. So this is just whining self-pity. And I hate that in a person. Under normal circumstances, I try my best to frame things in a positive way and I try to encourage people around me to do that , too.

So I figured that i could use a little push and I started to look around for online affirmations that I could use to buck me up and keep me thinking positive.



But this isn’t going to work. What kind of person could look at this and take it seriously? Not the kind of person I am, that’s for sure. And the affirmation apps for the iPhone are even worse.

So it looks like I will have to dig myself out of my own hole without the help of cyberspace. I don’t know. Maybe I’d feel better if I knew where to get good Chinese food.


22 thoughts on “Devolution”

  1. Every suggestion I can come up with is trite and silly. Maybe trite and silly is what you need.

    1. Go check the looky-loo situation.
    2. Report on the resident house corgi.
    3. Go get some flowers and plant them in unusual places, as a test for Sami when he returns.
    4. Peanut butter.
    5. See if you can get into an argument on Reddit. Preferably about raisin pie.
    6. Post pictures of the manhole covers in your neighborhood.
    7. Teach us all how to pronounce Wilkes-Barre. Or how to spell it.

    1. The WB natives say it like this: “WOLKS bare” but the local tv station used to have a peppy jingle that went like this in it’s entirety: “W B R E – T V, Scranton-Wilkes BEAR-ree!” And so we are a town divided.

  2. As a long, long time lurker (from way back, many, many, years) I am ready to come out of lurkdom to leave a comment to tell you that you’ve made a difference in this lurkers life. I lost my husband right around the time that I “found you”, and you became a part of my daily life. You were the one I had my morning tea with each day. I guess it’s about time that I thanked you for the company!! So, thank you!

  3. Alone for a spell, here too… trying to get our home of 30 yrs ready to put on the market, while husband and kids have moved on to the new place. Haven’t quite ‘devolved’ tho, due to the parade of workmen fixing things up. Also wanted to mention, as a middle-aged nurse, I appreciated your tales of nursing school and the battle-axe nursing instructors of old. I’ve been hoping to once again see you hearken back to that wondrous time.

    1. Oh, you want a battle axe story? I have been one that I’ve been holding onto for quite a while. Not that I’m bitter.

      It was my second year of nursing school and I was on a surgical nursing rotation. I had to give a pre-op injection to a woman who already had abdominal surgery. It was during the days of lap straps – do you remember those? (A 1″ x 8″ adhesive strip that had a string tie on one end. A pair of those could be tied and untied to hold thick compress dressings in place and there was no need to rip away tape every time the dressing needed changing.)

      Anyway the patient was thin and so the adhesive strip went all the way around her backside and right over the proper place to give a gluteal injection, (Remember that thumb on the lilac crest and an arc made by sweeping the middle finger 45 degrees?)The battle-axe instructor watched me start to pull away the strip and stopped me and asked me what I was doing. She told me time was short and I should just give the injection below the adhesive strip which would have made it RIGHT INTO THE SCIATIC NERVE. I said I wasn’t comfortable doing that and i went ahead with my original plan. She flunked me for the entire rotation for that act of insubordination. Me! A straight A student with a record unblemished before and after that experience. Not that I’m bitter.

      I’m going to dig out my nursing school year book and post her full name and picture along with my opinion of her poor people skills.

      1. Must have been one of those former military nurses! They would suffer no insubordination. I had one old vet who was concurrently a full professor and Colonel in the National Guard. But even she wasn’t as bad as the one who acted like the drill sergeant from Full Metal Jacket (effectively without the profanity). We were berated as “girls of privilege”, and her grading curve mandated for only one “A” and one “F” student per class. I am bitter about coming out second in the scoring. Still.
        Love you. Happy Birthday!

      2. Although your battle axe story was a long time ago, rest assured (not) that these clinical instructors still walk the earth. At 49, I started nursing school at a community college with a step program, LPN, then if your grades were over 3.0, auto qualified for RN program. My LPN instructor sat me down at the end of semester and told me I should not continue, I couldn’t handle being an RN. This really hurt! Didn’t listen to Her advice, went on to be awarded graduate of the year out of 250 students, and being hired by the college to help remediate nursing students. Also am a charge nurse for a full time job. She was so wrong about me. I’m in an RN-BSN program now, and it won’t be long until I’m done.

  4. I hate to say it, but I have gotten into that same rut. And after 15 years, it doesn’t bother me anymore.

  5. I also would like to thank you for helping to lift me out of my depression after the 2008 election. Your brilliant and spot-on snark about Michelle Obama not only helped put some of my incredulity into words, “World Famous Fashion Icon and Busy Mom…” but also kept me laughing. So thank you. You made the unbearable a little more bearable.

    1. Sadly, daily perusal of MOO photos wears one down and I couldn’t sustain that without making myself sick. I am fervently hoping Hillary is well enough to make another run at the presidency (but not win). That is a woman I could stare at forever.

  6. I’m a fan of “World Famous Fashion Icon” as well.
    As a person who devolves for at least a month every summer I recommend mumu’s and silent weeping.
    Sometimes silent weeping fills a need. It also has the virtue of silence, so you can do it privately.

  7. I read somewhere that when people say “How are you?”, only about 20% even remotely care. The other 80% sincerely hope it’s raining shit on you.

    I told my kids that the best they can hope is that the world doesn’t care a whit about ’em, because it certainly doesn’t owe them anything and most of the world is trying, in some way, to kill them.

    So grab a hold of something fun, interesting or delicious. Sit down in your house dress, tie your wool out of your face and enjoy it.

    Then tell us about it. It appears we’re in the 20%.

    1. I hope that when you say “tie your wool out of your face” you are not referring to my single chin hair.

      I am planning a bakery run today to buy myself a chocolate mousse mouse so I may blog about that.

      1. Not unless it has reached the point where it requires tying, but if it ever does, I expect a gloriously detailed post about it so I can put up a comment describing the odd crosswise wave in my second toenail from someone’s bratty kid stomping on it at soccer practice 20 some years ago.

  8. Happy birthday! (Meant non-sarcastically.)

    I spent the holiday weekend alone, with the daughter off house-sitting and getting ready to move out, the wife in Ohio visiting the relatives I have never met nor want to.

    By “alone” I mean with 4 dogs, some yard work machinery, half-assembled guitars and absolute bliss. But that’s me. OK, I did get to march at the head of the Memorial Day parade being waved at by my adoring public, but I don’t think that is why I was in a good mood. It was the weather and the fact that I got to cook hamburgers without making a salad.

    1. You inspire me! I should eat exactly what I want on my birthday since there are no witnesses slash complainers. I think I’ll have some Tuna Wiggle, a glass of buttermilk and a mousse mouse. Not all at once, though.

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