Sunday, 4 December 2016


I have listened to several items on the radio this last week about boredom. The general consensus seems to be that being bored is good for a body. It gives you time to think, to reflect, in some cases to write poetry. Writers they spoke to said that it was in those moments of "boredom" that they had their best ideas. We are told we should not fill children's time up with wall to wall activity; they need some time to invent their own activities, to play imaginative games.

 Okay, this is all well and good but I don't think they are talking about boredom. You can be very busy, have a load of stuff to do and be bored out of your tree. Or you can snatch a period of time out of your busy schedule and do nothing. That is not the same as boredom.

I don't think I have been bored for a long, long time. I can remember as a young child, in summer holidays, telling my mother I was bored. What it meant was that I had not decided what to do with myself and my time. And since then, I have never really been bored, occasionally frustrated but never bored. Waiting in an airport because your plane has been delayed is more frustrating than boring. You just have to make sure you have reading matter, stuff to think about.

It's a bit like sadness. How much of the great poetry or beautiful songs would have never been written in there were no sadness in the world. Maybe we just need some down time to appreciate when we are really feeling good.

And certainly we need some time to do nothing so that we can appreciate the stuff that we fill our busy lives with.

That's my take on it, anyway.

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