I love having fun. All kinds of fun. The giggly laughs as energy and life glow out of me, illuminating. The intent kind, where the clock alternates between fast spins and slow twists. The kind where the moment swallows me whole. All the many kinds of fun that permeate externally, internally, and eternally. Making up words, ideas, and plans at the spur of the moment.
But if I plan it in advance, the fun seems to diminish. I think I know what fun is. I think I know that inspiration is fleeting, and without it I’m a useless crumpled ball of complaints and blah. A hack. I think I know lots of things, and no matter how many times I find I know nothing, I still hold on tight to the notion that this, while it could be fun, surely isn’t. I’m almost sure of it. And surely I must know. Who is more of an expert on my life than me?
Writing is fun. I love the pouring of words on paper,dispensing the inner space of my mind to the outside world. I love sharing my ideas with people, although I question the value of them regularly. And regularly, I relinquish having fun in favor of whatever action I’m supposed to take now. And what am I supposed to be doing now? Talking to awesome people, making hot beats, using language as paint, eating decadent and delicious delicacies, and traipsing around like a Muppet. Muppets have fun. Even when they don’t. I want to be a Muppet.
Over here, the meat being that is me, I love to suck the fun away. I’d say it’s fun, but I won’t notice. I say I’m out to have fun, mostly my mission is to meander from one task to the next. As the country folk say “git ‘er dun.” Lots of done-ing gotten here. A litany of lists checked off, modified, renegotiated, shifted. It’s a kind of dance, really. Dancing is fun. Check off dancing. Was it fun? I don’t know, but it’s done gotten, and it got done.
Taking the fun out of things can be fun, but I wouldn’t notice. I’m too busy getting things done to notice the fun of things undone. Sometimes I take a moment to enjoy the weather, but whether I ever blend fun and productivity together is a question I never answer. I’m too busy second guessing, third taking, and moving forward to notice. Football players have fun, and they’re moving forward. Maybe more inspiration would help, or maybe if I do things I think are fun. Fun is whatever I don’t have to do now. And if I have to do it now, it ain’t fun. A perfect combination for a creature who lives only in the present moment, and who spends that moment strung out and stressed. Tangents are fun. I’m too busy chastising myself for a wandering mind to enjoy it. Maybe it’s fun to do that.
Writing is fun. But in my internal world, it doesn’t feel that way. It doesn’t feel fun to squeeze words out like toothpaste, to surrender to the ideas flowing through me. For a moment, the words pour out, followed by a pause to contemplate. Type and the the world melts away. If fun happens and I don’t notice it, does that count? In the moments between clickity-clacks of the keyboards, I notice that this doesn’t feel fun. It feels like something I have to do, some mission or task that is utterly important, and unless I utter the perfect words, you’ll all think I’m a fool. Fools have fun.
In this pre-winter day where the sun shines but doesn’t bring the warmth it did a few short weeks ago, on this pillowed seat with the porthole view of trees, it’s obvious that life is grand. Almost too good to stand it. I could be having fun now. I stop for a moment, and belittle myself for words that don’t flow well enough. I question my syntax, my word choice, and my rhyming. I ask myself, what would she write? Would he approve? I consider deleting this thought, metaphorically crumpling up the paper and slamming it into the trash, slamming my face into the piano because I just-can’t-take-it-anymore. Even Guy Smiley was having fun when he couldn’t take it anymore.
I made this plan, and I planned it from a list of things I love to do every day, and every week. I created a treasure map to fulfillment, and now all I have to do is follow the course. Thirteen paces north, five west. Easy-peasy. Or peezy, depending on where you’re from.
I’ve missed the obvious. It’s like when someone says “Look at the giant paper-mache spider on the side of the building,” and I don’t see it until they point. It’s my coffee, perfectly soy-milked and sweet. It’s my hoodie, comfy and warm. The feel of my socks on my feet. Maybe this is fun. Not because of what I’m doing, where I am, or my intended destination. As the warmth of more coffee makes it’s way into my stomach, I hit the space bar and pause. I pause because…
I have no idea what fun feels like. I don’t know what it is. Maybe fun is a traffic jam, or a sleepy train ride into town, or mopping the countertops while dinner cools enough to be eaten. I’ve gone all-in on figuring out how life works, only to find that it has nothing to do with my hand.
This is what fun looks like. Whatever this is. Whatever fun is. Whoever I may be.