[Opinion] Riding the enthusiasm rollercoaster

rollercoaster tycoon rollercoaster

Isn’t it weird how enthusiasm comes and goes?

It’s Thursday morning. The sun is shining even though it’s winter, the unpleasant cold I’ve been nursing has finally surrendered to my white blood cells (busily flexing in minuscule microbial triumph), and I don’t have to be in at the radio station until this afternoon. Hot damn! It’s writin’ time!

Obviously, the gods of Mount Fictolympus have decreed today to be their holy day; today, we will write as has never been written before! All the ideas that have been percolating in my groggy, cold-ridden head for the past few days will know release at last, free to titillate the imagination of the hordes of readers thirsting for their whimsy and poetically piquant phrasing. I’m ready! Time to whip out the ol’ laptop and get writing!

Except, I should eat breakfast first, shouldn’t I? I can’t write anything on an empty stomach. Seems sensible. You can’t build a delightful mind palace without solid mind foundations.

One slightly-raw stack of pancakes later, the morning is getting on and I’m feeling a bit sleepy again. Maybe it wasn’t such a good idea to spend so long on breakfast, but I’m still raring to go. Sure, I might not get quite as much written as I’d imagined, but oh, I will write up such a storm! I grab my laptop from my room and relocate to the kitchen, where at least I can ward off this damn winter chill with my lovely, climate-change-inducing heater. A comfortable writing environment is a productive writing environment.

As I kick open Evernote, I realize I’m still in my soft floral Peter Alexander pajama pants and grinning cat-faced nightshirt. There’s no denying that they’re absurdly pleasurable to wear, but I scold myself. No respectable writer would be found in their pajamas at ten-thirty in the morning, whether they’re the best pajamas on earth or not. Okay. Shower time, get dressed, put watch on. Then writing.

You can probably see where this is going. By the time everything is done and I finally settle down to some serious whimsical keyboarding, it’s nearly time to leave. Somehow, an entire morning full of endless opportunity has been completely squandered. I half expect to get smote down by the angry gods of Mount Fictolympus, Dr. Zeus and Hermes Melville, for my sacrilege.

The worst part is that this doesn’t just apply to writing. The enthusiasm-procrastination-loss of enthusiasm rollercoaster features when I try to watch television series, go for a bike ride, or even eat. It’s a frustration everybody faces: one moment, you’re super-duper-ooper keen to go out and do that thing, and then when it comes time to actually do it your enthusiasm has waned sufficiently that you get chronically distracted.

Now, this is hardly a revelation, but I find it strange — don’t you?

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