Thanks for Nothing

There’s this joke that goes by saying, “Nobody’s perfect, so therefore I’m Nobody.” The pun’s cheap, the joke’s predictable, and the truth is nobody is perfect, because–as I’ve been saying for years–perfection lies in the imperfect.

So on my mind are a lot of things. I’ve been putting this post off for a while, however, because I’m not sure what to be thankful about–there really are that many options, and the things I’m currently most thankful for are among the most personal and hardest to put into words, so I’m struggling with those even though that’s what I really want to talk about.

Thursday was a great day. I gave four people tours, two in the morning and two more in the afternoon, and all of them went well. Not to mention I didn’t have calculus in the morning, so I got to study for the take home quiz I have to do this weekend, and I got out of my evening class early as well. AND I got to see a lot of friends throughout the day and the GSA went really well. So, really, it was great, and none of that’s including the greatest part of all, which once again borders on the personal and hard-to-put-into-words category.

So I’m going to be ambitious and be thankful about two things today.

19. Cellphones

I never thought I’d fall in love with my cell phone as much as I have. It’s an alarm clock. It’s a calculator just strong enough to balance my check book, even if it can’t do my homework. It’s a calendar. It’s a timepiece. It’s a nice weight in my pocket, too. (In all seriousness, empty pockets are not fun.)

And all of that’s obviously disregarding the real use of cellphones: Texting.

Ok, the real use of a cellphone is to stay in contact with other people. Like calling family to make sure they’re picking me up on time or calling stores to get shop hours or calling organizations to get speakers (and then needing to call them back, which I’ve really got to get done already). See, I hate talking on the phone. I don’t know why, I guess I just hate the way my voice sounds when I hear it played back to me, and besides, the phone is so impersonal. There’s everything present of face-to-face contact…except for actually being face-to-face.

So I prefer texting. It’s even less personal than talking, but for me, that lower level of personalness makes it easier to communicate, easier for me to talk to you through my favorite medium: words. (I am a writer by nature, after all.) And lately, there’s been one person in particular I’ve been texting with, and that makes me especially thankful for this little thing called a cellphone.

20. Skype

This second thing’s a practical extension of the first. It’s not communication in person, but it is face-to-face–it’s everything that a phone call wants to be but isn’t. It might not be the highest quality in terms of face-to-face communication, but it sometimes gets close.

And it allows such things to be possible over great distances. It’s the only thing that made my first relationship last as long as it did (which is not to say it lasted as long as I’d wanted, but that’s another story); it’s the only thing that’s allowed me to keep in touch with another close friend who moved out of the country (whom I really must make the time to talk with again since it’s been a long time since we’ve had the chance); and it’s allowed me to meet other friends face-to-face in such a way that now I’m eager to meet some of them in person.

Separately these are both things we use, both things we probably don’t realise hinge upon so much that we do. And together, they come close to describing what’s made me feel so excited and thankful these past couple of days. The comparison isn’t perfect, but it comes close.

Then again, they say nothing is perfect, so if that’s the case, maybe today I should just be thankful for nothing.

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2 thoughts on “Thanks for Nothing

  1. Oh, how I love my loved ones’ ability to call me up five times an hour for the duration of my sleeping period.

    How do they get the nerve to call someone at 12PM in the morning? :(

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