I don’t know if I really LIKE this about myself, but I’m one of those nerd-people who actually pays attention in meetings, seminars, presentations, and the like. Most of the time. But every so often my mind will go off on private, meandering tangents, which lead to others, which lead to others….. I’m sure this happens to you, too. it happens to everyone who does the nine-to-five thing on a regular basis. What goes through your head? If you eavesdropped on my thoughts, you might hear something like this:

That guy’s wearing long sleeves.
How am I supposed to see if he shaves his arm hair?
It’s a little chilly in here. If I turned up the temperature in the room, would he roll up his shirt sleeves?
How many other people are wearing long sleeves? Several.
Hey, she’s a good 15 feet away and I can see her arm hair.
That guy over there has lots of arm hair.
Hey, I’ve never seen him before. Who is he and what does he do?
He looks like an accountant.
I’m hungry.
I wonder if I can talk someone into having sushi for lunch.
We haven’t had Thai in awhile.
Ginger salmon…….yuuuummmmmm……
Fresh basil rolls…….yuuuummmmmm……
Man, I have a craving for pound cake.
No icing.
Icing would ruin it. Just cake.
Maybe I’ll bake one at Christmas and eat the whole thing by myself.
Maybe not a good idea.
Geesh, I am getting antsy. I have a ton of stuff to do back in the office.
It looks like things might be winding down.
I wonder if anyone else is as bored as I am.
I like her shoes.
Her slip is showing. That’s going to bother me. Wish I hadn’t seen that.
Look somewhere else.
Ha! He’s about to fall asleep. Should I punch him?
I’d laugh if he started snoring.
Ahhhh, someone else is waking him up.
They woke him up because it’s his turn at the front of the room.
This man’s a pontificator.
We are going to be here for-freakin-EVER.
Geesh, we don’t have time for this.
Oops, I saw her slip again. Need to stop looking in that direction.
That dark-haired woman over there is doodling.
I think I’ll doodle.
Why don’t I doodle more? Most artists doodle constantly, don’t they?
Maybe I’d have more ideas if I doodled more.
I like that word. It sounds naughty.
Like: “Hey, I’ll doodle you if you doodle me.”
If I doodle the word “doodle” and don’t really draw a doodle, am I really doodling?
The doodling woman has a really unpleasant expression on her face.
It’s a look that, all at once, communicates “I smell shit” and “I’m way damn better than the peasants in this room.”
Is she bored?
Is she constipated?
Well, at least her slip isn’t showing.
Avert your eyes from the slip-showing woman.
Don’t look.
People might think you’re checking out her legs.
Don’t look.
Why am I compelled to look?
Don’t look.
Don’t look.
I looked.
Avert your eyes.
Watch the pontificator.
He is really getting on my nerves.
If he brings up one other problem, I’m going to scream. Very loudly.
It will be a passionate scream, and people will wonder why I’m having such a good time in this meeting.
What’s he saying now?
Dammit. There he goes. Another problem.
We need a new rule for life: any problem proposed must be accompanied by at least one potential solution.
How can I make everyone on earth follow this rule?
I….think I must….
Take over the world!!
Like Pinky & the Brain are always trying to do.
Maybe a giant satellite super-mega-huge laser can be involved in some way.
I really wish he’d stop talking.
If he doesn’t stop talking, I’m going to go insane.
Don’t go insane.
Don’t go insane.
Sing the Smirf song in your head. That’s not insane.
Laaa, laaaaa, la, la, la, laaaaa……
Look out the window.
Seriously, I’ve got too much to DO to be here.
I can’t take any more. I need him to stop talking. Now.
When I go insane, what will it be like? What will I do?
Will I kill him? Or will I run outside and kill the first person I see?
Will I feel better? Will I feel relief that he is no longer talking?
Or will I experience immediate regret, with not even one sweet second of relief?
Maybe I should avoid killing someone.
Maybe I should kill myself instead.
I won’t have to listen to him anymore.
I won’t have to get up early for work every day.
I won’t have job pressures.
I won’t have family pressures.
I won’t have to clean my house ever again.
I won’t have to worry about the mind-numbing tedium of paying bills…ever again!
Wow, that sounds great.
I think the best way to do it would be to stick a lead pencil in my forehead.
It adds a lead poisoning aspect which would be particularly poetic, I think.
I mean, two activities linked to me intimately–art and writing–are both linked to lead pencils.
But I would miss my cats. It would probably be days before someone came into my house and fed them.
I can’t let Ozzy and Blue go hungry.
Plus, I’m really enjoying my life nowadays.
In general.
Good Lord. How does he talk so continuously?
Does he breathe in between sentences?
Does he go around in circles like that because not enough oxygen is getting to his brain?
We’re going to be here even longer than I thought.
Let’s see…..I was thinking about something a second ago. What was it?
Oh, yeah…..I’d decided not to kill myself.
I’ll try an audio head-trick instead.
I’ll squint my eyes and maintain an internal yawning action without actually yawning.
Now he sounds like the teacher in the Charlie Brown cartoons.
The only problem with this technique is that I probably look a little weird.
Maybe like I’m having a stroke.
Ha! That’s funny.
Oops, I think I chuckled at an inappropriate time.
I’ll fake a little cough. There. No one’s the wiser, I hope.
Maybe meditation is the answer.
I’ll stare at that dot on the wall across the room….
Until everything else goes a little hazy….
Think nothing.
Be peaceful.
Just be.
A flash of white off to the left….
What was that?
She crossed her legs the other way and now her slip is showing even MORE.