Each afternoon, as I'm driving home from work, since it's the best time - aside from shower time and just before go to sleep time - to think, is when I reflect most on my day and decide what nice thing from the day I'm going to add to my Nice Things jar.
Now I know I'm still new to this whole nice things thing but, in my albeit limited experience, it's ridiculously easy to come up with at least one nice thing per day to happily jot down. Often, a day has so many nice things I want to remember, I end up writing enough to fill up the entire 1/4 sheet of paper. Whether I'm occasionally too easily amused or impressed by little things is not up for debate.
However, on Wednesday just past, I hit a snag.
It wasn't a bad day. Not at all! Sincerely, the worst thing that occurred was when I was driving to work that morning and a car cut in front of me on the highway and then slowed down to 35 mph. I couldn't figure out for the life of me what her hang up might be since I consider myself to be the ninniest ninny driver in the universe and she had me beat all hollow...until she finally got out of my lane and I was able to speed up to pass her. And then I realized the reason why she was going dangerously slow on the highway was because she was busy applying her mascara using the rearview mirror. Bleah.
Still...it wasn't a bad day. It passed pleasantly enough. But there was not one single thing out of the ordinary - nary a compliment, a nice story told to me, a funny youtube video shared via Facebook - that stood out and shouted "PICK ME! I'M A NICE THING!!!"
Even my last ditch hopes of getting a parking space on my block were dashed the moment I rounded the corner in front of my house and saw there wasn't a space to be had for 2 blocks. *sigh*
Eventually, I was reduced to writing down the fact that I'd taken a 30 minute power nap after work as my nice thing for the day which isn't an unusual occurrence but it is awfully nice.
Anyway! The point of this is that, Wednesday night, after I'd written down my nice nap thing, I began to contemplate what a "meh" day really means. I mean, I'd like to think meh days, just like truly awful days, are relatively rare. And, in the last 11 days, that hypothesis does appear to be holding true. I haven't had a bad day yet and only one meh day.
But maybe there's a point to having meh days every once in awhile. Ones in which nothing but banality exists. And then it hit me...
Life isn't just about nice things or awful things. We don't hop from one pleasantry after another or one disaster after another with nothing in between. If we did, we'd become desensitized to what is and is not pleasant or terrible...constantly raising the bar standard for what's good and subsequently lowering the bar for what's bad.
"Meh" IS the bar.
Meh is what keeps us grounded in reality. It's the place we sometimes find ourselves when we're resting from the highs and lows of passion and/or pain. It's the balance bar upon which we walk as we move forward through our lives, ever reaching for the next nice thing or stumbling face first onto the next icky gooey blob of a monstrous thing.
It is a place to hang out, looking up over it to see what we can see, hoping to catch a glimpse of what's good so we don't look below it as often and notice what's bad.
It can even be a bar we hook our legs around and hang upside down from to give ourselves a fresh perspective of the world around us. Everything looks and feels different when it's upside down, yeah?
Meh is the bar on which we perch. It's like...like...like...Vinny's power spot - the place he retreats to when he isn't sure what position he's playing, offense or defense. It's the place where we can chill for awhile, re-charge our batteries, retreat so we can get a good view of the lay of the land, weigh consequences and benefits before we act. It's a place where there is a strange comfort in the ordinary. A place to appreciate the extraordinary.
I can see a lot from that bar...if I look hard enough.
There is power there.
A lot of power.
The power of "meh".
PS And now, because I can, if you haven't yet stumbled upon your nice thing for today, perhaps you'll appreciate one of these two things...
First, I present to you Buttermilk. This little girl goat has so much zest for life, she is bouncing with it! Check out her exuberance for just, you know, life! That goat's not even hanging out anywhere near the bar...unless it's a bar that serves kids. (ba-dum-bum)
And if that doesn't do it for you, meet Simon and Daisy.
Notice how Simon is RIGHT THERE making sure nothing bad happens to Daisy on her inaugural trip down.
Those were two of my several nice things over the last two days.
So much for meh.