Written by

The Missing Spontaneity


Perhaps one of my favorite things about spring is the buzz in the air that increases in proportion to the increase in temperature outside. Friday afternoon waits for its evening counterpart to beckon us out of our offices and into the warm, bright air. Our steps carry an extra spring, and when combined with the need to get to Friday night plans, we practically run to our cars.

Empowered by the good weather and the feeling of good things coming, I get in my car and find myself stuck in bumper to bumper traffic. After an hour and a half of this, I am finally over the Bay bridge, in the city and the good feeling has become somewhat deflated. But I forget about this once inside the theater and am whisked away into the singing world of Margaret and her group of friends from Ohio.

After the musical, there is more driving. This time the driving does not require the crossing of any bridges, but is a straight shot down the Peninsula to the South bay. It is extremely dark on the freeway — has it always been this dark? Where are the street lamps? I am watching the lines of the lanes in front of me, watch them blur, am thinking about the summer — I catch myself almost falling asleep. I reach over for the pretzels next to me and pop them in my mouth, the crunching keeps me awake.

When I finally get to San Jose, I imagine sleep, comforting and enfolding and…

–but there is no sleep to be had because now we are going out. Which is not a problem, if I had been given proper notice and had time to gear myself up for this. But now all I really wanted was to go to sleep.

When had I become this person who needs to be given proper advance notice? This realization frightens me because that’s what happens when you get old (I imagine). You don’t want to just get up and go somewhere at the last minute when you’ve been thinking the whole time you’re going to go do something else.

And with a crashing thud, I realize that my sense of spontaneity has been missing… where had it gone and when was the last time I had seen it?

It feels almost as if I had used it too much in college and spent it all.

Last modified: January 10, 2019