Slices of Life: Jill Pertler
Life is supposed to be an adventure. That’s what they tell us, anyway.
Thing is, what type of adventure isn’t specified so I guess we are left to our own devices.
Most of us would welcome a nonstop, exciting, inspiring all-expense-paid and anything-but-banal adventure. Truth is, some things are easier said than done. There are practically an infinite number of real-life non-adventuresome adventures that can (and do) interfere and impede our ability to experience the jaw-dropping, isn’t-this-the-best adventures that we’d choose if given the choice.
Getting the garbage to the curb on the right day. Paying the mortgage each month. Scheduling a dental appointment. Making the bed. Dirty laundry. Dirty toilets. Moldy cheese. Changing the oil in the mini van. Changing the sheets. Bird poop on your windshield. Dog poop in the yard. Metaphorical poop in the least wanted of places. Dust bunnies everywhere.
Every day life. It may not feel anything remotely close to an adventure, but it can be. It’s all what we make of it. Why not make yours adventuriffic?
Let’s say you have to take the garbage down to the street every Monday. This is a reality at my house. The task might not seem thrilling, but my husband has found a way to create adventures in garbage. (Sounds messy!) Each week he challenges himself to see how many bags of household rubbish he can squeeze into our trash container. Ditto that for the recycling receptacle. Last week was a new record for him (and my sons who are called upon to help squish and sometimes stomp the trash). I honestly think it was one of the highlights of his weekend. At least it made him smile. Adventures will do that for you.
I find joy when I do a sock-load of laundry and end up with no errant mismatches. Likewise, when I go to look for the masking tape and it is in its assigned drawer and not under a couch or in someone’s car. Double that for a sharpened pencil with the eraser still attached.
Adventures in the mundane – why not take them and make them whenever and wherever you can get them?
Not all adventures have to be mundane. That would be pretty boring. You can create the adventures of your choosing. Grab the steering wheel; kick it into high gear and take charge.
Jump in the deep end. Jump in the shallow end. Ride a roller coaster. Ride a merry-go-round. Apply for a new job. Keep an old one. Tell a joke. Laugh at a joke. Paint the kitchen. Watch paint dry. Race a go-kart. Practice parallel parking.
Adopt a rescue pet. Go fishing. Meet a friend for lunch. Pay it forward. Plant a garden. Book a trip. Read a book. Learn to make mozzarella. Make a candle. Burn the candle at both ends. Go to a game. Play in the game.
Take a walk with your spouse. Hold hands. Fall in love for the first time. Fall in love for the last time. Tell someone you love them. Tell someone you love them every day for 10, 20 or 50-plus years. Make it what it can be.
Life is an adventure right there in front of us ready for the taking. Pursue it in your own way. Banal or thrilling it’s your choice. Define it for yourself and then go for it. You’ve not a minute to waste.
Cheesy, yes. But sometimes cheese speaks the truth.
Jill Pertler is an award-winning syndicated columnist, published playwright, author and member of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists.