On Life and Love

The Pressure of Existence

In lieu of having gotten enough sleep to say anything interesting today, even after two cups of coffee, I’m just going to post a little exchange between two characters in my primary novel-in-progress. I’m not sure if this is a good idea at all, but I thought about it as Greg was criticizing my Uno game for being very unstrategic. Blackman is a human lady visiting and studying U’look, an alien with a rather different way of perceiving time.

Blackman: We haven’t seen your people play strategy games, U’look. Do you have strategy games?

U’look: Of course, we had and have concepts of strategy.

Blackman: But do you have games? Ways to test strategy with no long-lasting effects?

U’look: All things have and had and will have long-lasting effects. We have always been and are strategic, but it is never a game.

Blackman: So you never play in a lighthearted way?

U’look: Such a thing would be sick, Nilara. One cannot play lightly with existence.

I’m over capacity in terms of personal workload and actually feeling a bit stressed. Since leaving teaching, I’ve always found it silly to be stressed about work (although I do it anyway). Healthy stress that keeps me moving, yes, but I’ve never done anything–college included–as heartrendingly stressful as teaching. To find my heart rate up and my sleep restless about finishing a recreational project is startling. Can’t say I’m a fan.

I want there to either be more hours in the day or for me to need less of them for sleep. A common desire, I’m sure.