I Believe...

I believe I’ll have another cup of tea. You don’t mind if I pour while imparting a bit of pre-New Year’s Eve advice, do you?

Down through the ages, as the dying year wisps away at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve, man takes it upon himself to make an Avowal of Resolution to Determine to Commence to Eradicate all the Bad Things from Life that coming year. Silly sounding and grammatically superfluous, isn’t it? Please pass the sugar bowl.

We seem to abhor the Things that Haunt us, embrace the Things that Please and, despite our best efforts, muck it up royally. We sit on our thumbs and deduce what Things are Bad and what Things are Good. Often, what we think of as Good is in fact very Bad for us, such as money or immortality. Consider immortality. You would need to reinvent yourself every thirty or so years; have you any idea how much of your immortal time would be caught up just in waiting for your new passport?

We give birth to the Things that Haunt us. An IRS audit would be a Bad Thing for most. You thought that claiming $10k in donations to the Red Cross would be a Good Thing (unless you only dropped $10 into a charity bin.) Fibbing would be a Bad Thing to do. If you did fib, that Good Thing-cum-Bad Thing is a Thing that Haunts your mind. You forget the audit itself and you concentrate on the thought of the massive IRS police who are going to clap you in irons and haul you away to the IRS jail.

Likewise, an upcoming surgery becomes a Thing that Haunts; we spend countless hours fretting over silly things. We might even conjure up an image of our trusty surgeon slipping upon the miles (surely there are miles in there) of intestine that have accidentally spilled to the floor. We forget, in that moment of worry, that we are only going in for a simple eyelash biopsy. In both cases, we tend to put the issue (the Thing that Haunts) as foremost in our minds even as we push the Thing itself to the back.

I acknowledge the Things that Haunt me. They loom ferocious. (That was poetic license. They don’t actually loom at all and they are in fact rather pathetic Haunting Things that have no more power other than that which I choose to endow them with. The only Ferocious Thing looming over me is a monster Headache that seems to be working itself into a proper Migraine.)

Am I attempting to make a point? Yes and no.


I believe that there are times when one should pointlessly write for the sake of acknowledging Things that Haunt. Did that make sense? Perhaps it will once you’ve pondered it.

I could make my point by stating that people who capitalize Words in order to impart a greater sense of Distinction are, in a nutshell, pointlessly pointing these Words out to us, as if we really needed to ponder Pointless Things any more than we actually have to; that the exercise of capitalizing Words is a method of drawing us away from the things that are (comparatively) muttered (via a lower case letter) between the Lines. We must go through the pointless motion of pointing out (to ourselves) the stupid Things that Haunt - “pointless” because we do not always believe what we tell ourselves.


Simply stated: we all have avoidance issues. We all use stupid excuses to avoid confronting our avoidance issues. Things that Haunt are Pointless Things. They block us from seeing the things we need to see.

Sometimes what we need most is to take a moment to remind ourselves that some Things are pointless while other Things have merit. Sometimes what we need to do is let go of our beliefs about some Thing and simply profess “I Believe I’ll have another cup of tea,” and then pour ourselves one without any regard to the Things that disrupt our day. Speaking of that, pass the teapot, if you please. Thank you.

We will have to face those Things eventually. They are lurking within our sight, cringing in the corner like a misbehaved puddle of cat sick. We can put a rug over it when company comes to call, and top that with a lovely ficus (not to be confused with a fichus. The fichus would not stay put unless you nailed it to the floor.) We could pick it up, but that would be too much. Too much what? I haven’t a clue. Find an excuse to go with that avoidance issue and you’ll have yourself a well-rounded Thing that Haunts.

I suggest that we nod in the issue’s general direction as we add a sprinkle of sugar to our cup. Acknowledging the Thing that Haunts has a disastrous effect: it strips that Thing of its claws. The Thing has a tricky time finding purchase in our hearts and minds. We can better deal with it. It may still loom larger than life but I firmly believe that it can be conquered.

Wishing you success in 2009 as you battle with your own Things that Haunt. Believe in yourself and you can’t go wrong.



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8 responded with...:

gautami tripathy said...

I want to share that cup of tea too. May I?

Great advice..

guts wrenching out....

Kill Word Verification

floreta said...

really loved the conversational tone here over a cup of tea! very deep ponderings.. wouldn't do with a cup of coffee at all. hot chocolate is out of the picture too. i think we should just try to let go of the things that haunt. try to start fresh. but of course, easier said than done..

linda may said...

G'Day,
I have not seen you in here for a while. Yes we all have those things that haunt and cause us to procrastinate but they are not that easy to conquer as saying so would have us believe. Not for me anyway.
Even when we know that they are wrong.

Rinkly Rimes said...

Some good advice there! I am constantly haunted by the dentist even when my teeth are OK.

gel said...

Captivating from beginning to end. Love the welcoming opening and the optimistic ending. Your philosophizing, satire, and jest in the body of your post appeals to me.
I'm here from Sun. Scribs and will be back.

Alison May said...

Oh truly.... you have no idea how much I needed to hear that today is the day to shake off the Thing That Haunts Us...

Thank you.

Tumblewords: said...

You've done a wonderful job of writing these words and making me re-think things I've put aside for some time. Nice work!

Annie said...

Hi T. I am totally ignoring resolutions this year. 2009 is the year of reality. If I want to do something, find a successful way to do it. The list is short, just two things but they will be a great challenge to finding that successful path. Happy New Year dear friend, Annie