Week B – Boredom

Three years of university, three whole years of that blissful combination of academic swotting and student comradeship have sadly passed me by.  It felt like being passed by a speeding car.  I watched it approach; I knew it was coming fast but it was always approaching, I was always anticipating. Then suddenly, WHOOSH. It had whipped past me in a second, leaving me somewhat flustered while I watch it gradually recede into the distance.

Despite efforts to remain in the South West, I have returned to my hometown to a ‘settled down’ state of going to work Monday to Friday, and seeing the still-student boyfriend as often as possible.  Compared to my hectic student life, my existence is now somewhat subdued. I’m looking forward to the next stage in my life, but right now feels like an interval. Or a pit stop.  But I’m not bored.

Some people argue boredom is just part of being human. Others think differently:

“Only boring people get bored.” – Robert Mailer Anderson

This view is a little harsh – I should hope Anderson is a damned interesting man to be going round saying things like that – and I’m not sure I agree.  To be a ‘boring person’ is based on the judgements of others; feeling ‘bored’ is a personal feeling or state of existence.

‘Mr Boring’ is far more likely to bore his friends than himself.  ‘Mr Boring’ could be quite contented in his own company, with his own hobbies, whatever they may be.

Tolstoy puts it better:

“Boredom: the desire for desires.” – Tolstoy

Personally, I only ever get bored when I can’t decide what I want to do with my time, when I’m feeling lost and listless.  So I see where Tolstoy is coming from.

If the mind desires nothing, then there is nothing that will satisfy it.  Boredom indicates the need to be satisfied by something, but with no interests and no desires, that’s no easy feat.

As I leave this post quite open-ended, I shall leave you with one last thought, along a similar vein:

“The cure for boredom is curiosity.” – Dorothy Parker

Please share your views!