Gretchen Rubin wrote in The Happiness Project about the year she spent “test-driving the wisdom of the ages, the current scientific studies, and the lessons from popular culture about how to be happy.” The Puppiness Project is my attempt to learn the same from Honey, my Golden Retriever.
I like to put the unwrapped gifts back under the tree. As I placed a box of chocolates on the tree skirt Mike said, “I don’t think you should do that. You’ll poison your dog.”
To which I replied, “Honey won’t get into anything under the tree. Besides, there’s not enough chocolate to harm her even if she did get into it.”
Guess which one of us was right. And wrong.
Honey didn’t devour the chocolate under the tree. She didn’t pay any attention to it. But she very daintily picked up a pair of socks I had gotten as a gift and brought them up on the couch with her.
Honey finds a soft sock in her mouth more comforting than chocolate.
Yes, I know I can’t multitask nearly as well as I think I can. And that distractions take away from the quality of my work. But I enjoy a simple comfort when I’m working alone at home.
My husband frequently works late. It gives me productive time to work on computer and blogging tasks. But it’s awfully quiet. Especially since Honey rarely snores.
My comfort is to play some kind of media in the background. Sometimes I’ll play music. Other times I’ll put in a library DVD of one of my favorite TV shows. Or I’ll pick up the Iron Chef offerings on Hulu.
My latest favorite is catching up on Deep Space Nine, the very best of the Star Trek offerings.
The secret to comfort media is to pick something that’s not too involving or doesn’t require much concentration. Wim Wenders movies are out as are anything with subtitles. I can’t listen to complex music like Bach or irritating music like U2 (Is this where I get my first death threats? U2 fans are pretty rabid).
But TV shows I’ve seen before, folk music, and stupid movies are great comforts.
Sure it’s low brow but it makes me happy
When Honey carries a pair of socks around in her mouth, I don’t make fun of her because it’s not a ball. It’s a simple comfort that makes her feel good.
And I’m vowing now to stop being embarrassed that I like to play bad TV in the background while I’m replying to blog comments or planning my next week’s posts.
Sure my writing would be better if I concentrated on it more. But I’d probably spend far less time doing it if I was freaked out about being alone.
I’m an extrovert doing introverted things–reading, writing, planning. And if
carrying a sock around in my mouth playing mediocre television while I’m working is a comfort, I’ll take it.
Do you and your dog have simple comforts? What are they?