Tuesday, August 23, 2011


Now that I'm fraternizing out the in The Real World, I hear a question I'm unaccustomed to: "So, do you have any big plans for the weekend?" There's also the corresponding statement: "I have to figure out what I'm going to do this weekend."

People are looking for events. Ball games. The state fair. Blues Fest. Camping. Opening weekend of a movie. Summer Fest. A barbecue with friends. The county fair. A trip to the cabin UpNorth. A parade. A thresheree. A wedding shower. Corn Fest. A bike rodeo. A couple of restaurants to try out. The customers and my co-workers have time on their hands, and there don't seem to be frequent enough events to fill up their weekends and days off.

I do not understand this.

For us, entertainment has to be squeezed into the schedule. We have tickets for the Cardinals game next week, but it's going to be wearying to go to the game. We want to go. We will enjoy going. But there's stress attached to it too. There's always work to be done. If there were no chores and big tasks to tackle [you're laughing at the nonsense of it, right?] it would be fabulous to sit around at home and just relax, reading a book, playing a game, singing at the piano, going for a walk.

HOW do these people have enough time available to them that they're having trouble hunting up enough events to amuse themselves without becoming bored bored bored? What am I doing wrong?


  1. I always find those kind of questions funny. For me, spending a couple hours uninterrupted and ALONE working in the garden on a Saturday morning IS entertainment. :-)

    And they have time because they don't keep house & home the way you and I do. I think it's as simple as that. For example, I wash the car myself; it takes the better part of a Sunday afternoon. Others run it through a car wash. A coworker hires someone to seal their driveway, you do it yourself.

  2. I don't understand it either, Susan. We have to make ourselves go do the few things we do. We do usually end up enjoying them and are glad we did them, but we have to force ourselves to make it happen. Whenever there are a few free hours we are quite content to just stay home. But then of course there is the challenge of actually making yourself relax and not feel guilty about all the things you could be doing but aren't. So the getting out can be a good thing because you get away to a place where the only choice is recreation and/or leisure.

    I wonder if there is an introvert/extrovert dynamic in play here? Maybe the people who are asking what big plans you have for the weekend are extroverts who need to get out among people and noise and action to recharge, whereas introverts like us need alone time and quiet to recharge?

  3. Cheryl, you may have a point -- it may be something with extroverts/introverts. I think Jenny's got a point too -- so much of my "entertainment" is work that most Americans pay someone else to do.

    It seems to me that, among my co-workers, I am the one who always seems to have plans. And I'm the one who wants, more than any of them, to just stay at home and weed the garden or even (should I be so lucky) read a book. When someone comes in with a flyer for the bulletin board, announcing an airshow or a band or a re-enactment, some of the others say, "Hey, I think we'll go check that out this weekend." And I have no desire! It makes me feel like I have no community spirit. But I think it's just that my "community" is more tied up with family and church. Oh, and the self-reliant chores of yesteryear.

  4. As the token extrovert posting here, I *love* to get out and do fun things, but I also don't know how people have time or could possibly need to look for activities to avoid boredom. (But I don't understand boredom *as a concept.*) When we do have some fun activity planned for the weekend it makes everything else more stressful.

    I think we all do way more for ourselves than most people. That is definitely part of it. (Even, I, who run my car through the car wash. :))

    We also already have at least our Sunday morning committed to church, and often more than that. And we probably all get a fair amount of joy and satisfaction from activities that are seen as "not fun" by most people like cooking, gardening, and just doing the normal stuff of life with our families.

  5. Jane, now that you mention it, Gary often makes the point that there are chunks of church time in our schedules that are probably not part of our neighbors' lives.

    Also, I appreciate what you said about the concept of boredom. Yeah....

  6. There's also the introvert that stays home all the time, such as Paul and I both. With him working at home we often have to make a point to go out because we go stir crazy if we don't. Just going out for church on Sunday isn't always good enough. And sometimes the people we like to go out to (nathan and katie, and my mother in laws) aren't home so then we have to find something to do. Usually just movie and a dinner works well for us, or just going and getting groceries/running errands.

    Correction to my above statement, Paul is the introvert... I am not really either one, just a combination I guess, sometimes I like to be around people and sometimes I don't. Just depends on the mood. But yeah I agree with the stuff mentioned above, they either don't keep their houses very clean (I don't do a good job about this right now, but I am working on it! but I bet my house looks better than most peoples), or they don't have a lot of family/church stuff keeping them busy. Or the whole extrovert thing.

  7. Cassie, I just want to clarify on the "housework" thing. We weren't really talking about keeping the house clean (although that IS part of it) but also gardening, canning, mending, painting, home repairs, changing your own oil, making your own maple syrup, taking charge of your health so that you're rarely using doctors/medicines, etc.

  8. Yeah I know. :) I talk about the cleaning of the house only cause some of that you can't really do in an apartment... there are limitations to the stuff I can do here. I do make my own maple syrup though... but don't know if that really counts since it's just basically maple extract boiled with water and sugar... haha. But yeah I can do mending (and do) and could do canning, but don't really have a garden so that seems kind of silly. But yeah the painting, home repairs, gardening, lawn work... well you don't do those things in an apartment. They frown on them.