I am The Niggle
And I’m here to say
I bore in your skull
Every hour of the day
You wanna live your life?
You wanna get away?
I’m gonna stalk you down
I’m gonna make you pay
I’m a patient guy
I got plenty o’ time
No matter how long it takes
I’m gonna own your mind
Introducing my good buddy The Niggle. He’s an ornery rambunctious sort. Invisible and sneaky, at any given moment in time there are literally thousands of him latched on tight, gnawing at our skulls, always desperately trying to get in. Fun stuff, huh?
The Niggle is the price we pay for this modern life. He hangs on dearly when we look around and ask, “What gives? Is this all there is?”
He’s the background highway noise that permeates our fancy homes. A little drill bit of omnipresent pressure that pushes us one step closer to the edge. Our brains may have long since given up and deemed those road sounds as mere “white noise,” but even if we’re no longer conscious of it, it’s always there, chipping away. Chip, chip, chip.
The dictionary describes a niggle as something that causes “slight but persistent annoyance, discomfort, or anxiety.” But, to me, he’s a modern day superhero of goodness and fun.
What other forms does this little devil take? Read on. He might even be working through this very blog post.
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Tell Me Where To Go
One thing I’ve learned about major life stressors is I’m normally not even aware they exist. But it’s comforting to know that sooner or late your body will get around to being informative about it.
“Hey up there, brain!” the body likes to say. “You fucking idiot. Check it out. Shit is happening all over this place. Wake up!”
Well played, body. Well played. Subtle as always.
What are major life stressors? I think they fall into two major categories.
- Things You Do Not Want
- Things You Asked For
I’m not sure which category is worse.
This week I changed jobs. (More details on that coming soon.) My wife has also put in her notice to resign her position. We’re moving out of our house of four years and leaving the small town for the big city. As of Sunday I got rid of my car. Christmas exists.
These are all stressors. I know because I looked them up.
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Looking forward to some anticipation
When the movie Office Space said, “Looks like someone has a case of the Mondays,” they almost had it right. I happen to have a case of the “weekdays.” Sadly, there is no known cure. The weekdays are always fatal.
Weekends do have a few things in their favor. You don’t have to go to work and you don’t have to deal with that puss-filled pimple of a boss. For a while.
But what else they got?
Sure, I look forward to weekends just like most everyone else. But Friday is the worst weekday of the week, notwithstanding Rebecca Black, of course. (You can see my Friday-is-the-worst-day-of-the-week logic here.)
You see, I’ve known something about Fridays for a long, long time. I was in the science lab (back when I was a much younger whore) when I put it all together. And I’m willing to share my findings with you. Shhhhhh!
Here is what my time in the lab proved*:
Tom’s Law #42
Unless death is somehow involved, every Friday is always followed by another Monday.
* I say “proved” but my results have not been subjected to peer review. We couldn’t find anyone sadly pathetic enough to perform the work.
One moment it’s Friday 5:05 pm and you stop to capture the moment. You take a swig from the flask of vodka under the driver’s seat. You just jumped in your rig, put in the key and are about to embark on the magical journey known as Friday night. Or, as I like to call it, “The Holy Time.” You try to freeze that moment in time so it will last forever, but try as you might, you cannot. Your eyes blink a couple of times, you shake your head, and suddenly, you find yourself in the same spot, only it’s Monday morning and the weekend in already over and the boss awaits.
“Oh my God,” you say to yourself. “How did that happen?” And, unlike Friday evening, time on Monday mornings slows down to such a point that a dead snail going backwards moves along faster. M equals Monday, M equals Molasses.
So yeah, some studies just came out, but they only prove what I already knew. Don’t worry, I’m here to help spread the good news. Read on to be cheered. What you don’t know could kill you.
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December 23rd. Woot. Doing the lame “what I was posting a year ago” thing is a cheap way to milk out the start of a new post. Last year on the 23rd I blogged about some women who stole a child’s WalMart gift card and wrote about some really cool photography by a woman who has been featured in National Geographic magazine…
If Sarah Palin can do it, why can’t I? I’m going to invent my own words, too. I’ll start with this one:
stressure – A place where stress and pressure meet
LOLZ! RAWR! Mother Grizzly is in the house, yo.
So yeah, I was having another heart to heart with my new boss. We were talking about my fun-filled work days of balls to walls and hair on fire. Days that are so busy and hectic I don’t usually have time to take my breaks or even sit in a chair.
He was asking me about why I was letting the stress get to me.
“What would you do if you were an emergency room surgeon?,” he asked. “How would you handle the stress then, eh? They have a lot of stress!”
Wow. He really thought he had me there. So, so very clever.
I thought it over for a couple of nanoseconds and volleyed back with my rebuttal.
“Well, the first mother fucking thought that pops into my head is, oh, I don’t know. What? An emergency room surgeon? I’d probably be making what? Five million fucking dollars a year?!?!?”
I’m working on a new mathematical formula to explain this phenomenon. Think about it. Let us consider someone with a minimum wage job and no stress. Say it’s pumping gas at the local station. Now someone comes along and says, “Wanna get out of this dump? I’ll pay you $1 an hour more but I’ll literally blow your fucking head off with pressure and stress. Sound good?”
The point here is simple: I don’t want a level of stress equal to an “emergency room surgeon” while making damn near minimum wage. Seems simple, eh? Yet in my boss’s mind that level of stress in exchange for peanuts sounds perfectly reasonable.
The formula for this seems simple. If the situation you have to go through at work isn’t worth the level of pay, then you won’t give much a shit, will you?