Friday 24th February
Paul Simon wrote a song ‘I think too much’ – not one of his best, I must admit – but I understand the sentiment. I think too much; far too much. Maybe all of us humans do, perhaps this is the price for our heightened intelligence – we think too much. And when we think we often torment ourselves, going over and over things, slights and words spoken in haste, rather than soon forgotten are worried into ridiculous proportions. We cannot watch the news without feeling depressed; as if our personal feelings, our responses to the lunacy around us can have any possible effect; we react just the same. And even when we are supposed to be relaxing, in the middle of a book maybe, we cannot stop thoughts popping up like daisies on the clean lawn of our minds. And so we seek escapism, cinema, television, music, radio – anything to stop us thinking so much.
But, without thought, without consideration, without worry indeed – what are we? Some anthropologists believe that one of the key factors in certain apes becoming human was when we started to control the food supply; most animals spend an inordinate amount of time in searching for or hunting or simply eating. This gave us time to think, and of course now with our modern technological lifestyles, where every device is programmed to save us time we have far more time to think and maybe we think too much. Happiness is like a wispy cloud that glides across our horizon occasionally, try to grab it and it dissolves, moves away and eludes us, think about it too much and it is gone completely.
I sometimes wish I could just stop thinking for a while, maybe a few days, a week or two. But I seem to seek out the news, it is my default channel – must find out how terrible the world is – and think too much about it. And so we seek distractions, and for me by far the greatest soother of my tired mind is music; if I go a single day without listening to an album or two I feel deprived, I go to extraordinary lengths to carve out a space in every day to bathe in music, sinking beneath the surface, letting the words and melody seep into my brain, reassuring me that no matter what I have to think about this constant is always there. Anyway, don’t think too much about this blog, I am sure you have lots of other things to think about…