Guilty Pleasures and Compulsive Rituals

kitchen table
Image by megrje via Flickr


So I’m still awake.  Apparently only my friend Debbi and I battle insomnia, so God Bless the rest of yous (translated as, I hate your effin guts).

Right now, Himself and I are sitting at the kitchen table, taking our frustrations out on our respective netbooks…as he’s jabbing away on his keyboard, I decided to make some coffee.  Or like my late great-aunt Bernice would say, put on a pot of coffee.  I didn’t make a pot, but you get the gist of where I’m coming from.

(c) 2010 Mom of Three Photography, all rights reserved

It got me to thinking about guilty pleasures.  Some people can’t start their day without a cup of java, or tea, or a cigarette, or heck, a shot of something stronger. Guys always talk about morning sex, but who has time for that?  When I was working, I never felt complete without a cup of coffee from the bodega by my job up in the Bronx…I miss Stop ‘N’ Go. They took all my money, but they made some good ass coffee and a tasty sausage, egg and cheese sandwich on an English muffin.  No morning was complete without breakfast from that spot.  A day at work without coffee and a sandwich was a day inviting certain disaster.   

Speaking of my mornings, my commute was never complete without my iPod or my BlackBerry, or my newspaper, either.  I couldn’t start work without checking in on my Twitter timeline, my Facebook stream or my Foursquare status.  I was pretty compulsive about this, I must admit.  And what I realized is that these compulsive rituals can be highly stressful. 

Now that I’m on sabbatical…I can’t start my day without getting up, giving thanks for the chance to take a much-needed break, and turning on the local jazz station.  I just let the music wash over me, while I allow my mind to enjoy that moment in time.  Then I get up and run to the computer.  I used to hole myself up in my bedroom, but now I make a conscious effort to come out to the kitchen/living room, sit by the window and watch my neighbors make their way to the bus stop.  I watch the kids meander down to the high school across the street from my apartment, remembering how agonizing it was to sit through class after boring class.  I watch cars, trucks and buses do the stop and go shuffle up and down Bergen Avenue.  Occasionally a honking horn pierces the silence.  Other times, someone decides to get animated and vocal, sharing their frustrations with the rest of the block. 

All in all, it’s just another day in my neighborhood.  How much more dysfunctional would we be if we didn’t have guilty pleasures and compulsive rituals? 


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