the circular runner

Writing: A Good Dose of Slowness on a Sick Day

In life, media, observations, teaching & education, writers & books, writing on December 8, 2011 at 10:12 pm


It’s sad, but the only time I sit around and read for joy or watch a movie guilt-free are sick-days. The reason I don’t read so much or watch movies might not be guilt no that I think of it.  Or, if it is guilt, the guilt is a by-product of something else.  Maybe it’s better to say that sick-days are days when I’m not conscious of time. I’ve mentioned this before, but as I get older, I feel more and more like I’m accelerating. I am less patient. I want to do more and do everything as fast and efficiently as I can. I don’t know where I’m going to go once I finish, and it doesn’t matter. It’s all about speed. I’ve noticed the same thing in many of my students. They want to get done with their lessons; they want to get on with IT, even though they have no idea why or what IT is exactly. So, maybe it’s not an age thing. Is it technology? The Internet and the IPhones? The Cult of Multi-Tasking?

No idea. What I do know is that today, when I was watching a movie, I had to stop myself from fast-forwarding a section of the film that seemed predictable. Granted, it was a Samurai movie and there was an endless–what seemed endless–battle scene early on. Though I still like martial arts movies, there’s only so long I can watch the same five guys chopping through an army of other soldiers who politely wait their turn to be eviscerated. Still, even if the film wasn’t amazing and the choreography was not very distinct from one scene to another, the fact that even on a sick-day, I was compelled to skip forward is telling that something is happening here. I needed to be stimulated. I needed to move on, be done with IT.  If it wasn’t for the fact that I was sick, I probably would’ve multi-tasked: checked emails as the second 100 evil soldiers got their due.

I know, to a point, I am writing tonight because I need my fix of slowness. That’s what writing does for me. It slows me down, forces me to accept that things take as long as they will. You can’t multi-task while you write. You can’t fast-forward. You have to work your way across the page, one word at a time. It’s the only way.

Right now, after a day stuck in bed, I’m bouncing off the walls and at the same time, exhausted. I want to be done with this sickness and with this blog post. So I’ll stop writing and try to sleep some. It won’t be easy to get to sleep, but I know it will be possible because I took a few minutes out to write these words.


  1. Get well soon, but keep writing even after you are up and running at full speed!

  2. Great post thanks. I really enjoyed it very much.

    Love writing? We would love for you to join us!

    Writers Wanted

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