Things I Have Mistaken For Forward Momentum In My Personal Life Between The Years 1998-Present

  • Typing ostentatiously loudly in public places like campus libraries or coffee shops when I realize I haven’t typed anything, just scrolled for the last 45 minutes

  • Abruptly and without reason saying “No” to something I actually wanted to go to or participate in because I felt like I hadn’t been setting enough boundaries lately, whatever that means, and as if by simply increasing the quantities of “No”s in my life I could actually start managing my time differently

  • Ignoring something important

  • Leaning forward in the driver’s seat so I can “see farther” down the road

  • Opening a Google Document and typing “To-Do” and today’s date in bold

  • Setting up voicemail transcript so I can briefly scan a paragraph full of _______s before hitting “delete” after two weeks anyways

  • Getting dumped

  • Finding a piece of previously-unaccounted-for nicotine gum in between the seats of my car

  • Finding a salvageable chapstick in the dryer

  • Drinking a glass of water and feeling marginally virtuous

  • Reading a recipe for making bread and thinking about making bread

  • Cracking my knuckles

  • Throwing away all the old punch cards in my wallet

  • Problem going away on its own

  • If it rains after a long period of not raining, or if it snowed while I was asleep

  • Running one (1) errand

  • Finishing picking at something (hangnail, shameful shoulder zit, thin plastic backing on front of credit card, nail polish)

  • Switching all the nicknames in my contacts list to regular names

  • Talking to someone attractive

  • Thinking about someone else who seems to have a lot of forward momentum

  • Forgetting to refill a prescription for long enough that I’ve essentially already made it through the withdrawal cycle and might as well just have a new kind of life now

  • Receiving mild, unsolicited gossip about a third party (“I’m Hedda Hopper, but upscale and friends with more communists”)

  • Throwing away old condiments

  • Clearing my browser history, but specifically of time-wasting sites I plan on never visiting again, mostly superniche tumblrs and recipe aggregators, but only the ones where I’ve already memorized the URLs

  • Throwing away mail I should absolutely be opening

  • Seeing a trailer for a particular movie I’ve decided I’m going to go see when it comes out six months from now