The Singularity Confliction

Being in a long term relationship (going on 15 years now) makes me think about what it would be like to be single. Pretty sure if I was single I would be wondering about what it would be like to be in a relationship. This is definitely a very typical human thing I think – you always wonder about that which you don’t have.

I have never been able to come to a firm conclusion about whether or not I’m a more solitary than social creature or the other way around. Then I worry if I’m starting to lean on the side of solitary then maybe I just don’t fully appreciate just how embedded into my life my nearest and dearest  to me are. I do sometimes feel a fleeting (so fleeting I blink and I miss it) concern that what I love most about the internet is the interaction I have with other people without actually having to expend any energy on the logisitics and the usual expected norms of in person behaviour. It doesn’t matter if my shirt has got some indeterminate looking stains on it, or if my hair looks frazzled, if I’m all sweaty from exercise, I don’t have to temper my reactions or facial expressions and school them in to more moderate and acceptable responses.

The nice thing about being in a relationship with someone, knowing someone so well and having them know you so well is that none of those things are given any thought. Most of the time. I probably do need to qualify that statement. Nobody ever really reveals absolutely everything to their other half do they? And I’m not talking the mundane like maybe you made a purchase that you didn’t tell them about the cost of, or you said you used a certain ingredient when actually you totally forgot but it still tastes just fine anyway, or that really you have no idea how the bumper on your car came to be like that or yes of course you checked the to see if those plants needed watering. I’m not counting the daily stuff that we perhaps gloss over in order to keep things smooth. I’m talking the thoughts in your head. There’s a reason why we haven’t evolved into a race of mind readers. We are not meant to hear and know every single thought in someone else’s head. Can you imagine what would happen if you shared everything you thought about with your nearest and dearest (whether they be family or a significant other)…chaos and bedlam and anarchy and that’s just the shopping centres. So yes I’m curious to know if there are any relationships out there that are just that open the people in them feel free enough to share every single thought. Or is that only on TV?

 

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Busier Than An Ant at a Picnic

It’s been a little while since I posted here and I suppose that’s what happens when your online life takes a back seat to real life happenings. I don’t mind it when it does but I always have just a little itch to not let things happening in the online world slide past me for too long. We mere mortals have a short lifespan and the notion of missing something – sometimes however trivial – does make me a little anxious. Highly irrational probably but who knows when an online article, story or connection might be made that could have a very positive impact on your real life? I wouldn’t want to miss that!

For the past week I have been hosting a guest out from Washington – a ‘gal’ (as she refers to herself and others) around my age who has come out to Perth to present some seminars on handling in agility to the small, fairly close knit agility community here in Western Australia. This is the second time we’ve had her out and the second time she’s stayed with me. It’s a long trek for her – by the time she catches connecting flights and has the layovers it’s all up around 30 hours of travelling time EACH way. I’m glad she feels enthusiastic enough to do it and is in the position where her career lets her do it without too much fuss. Plus it means when I visit the States this year I’ll get to have some downtime in Washington with her and her dogs and see the sights of Seattle. We seem to have a number of common interests, views and experiences, it’s made the whole hosting experience pretty pain free and easy.

It’s nice to have a more international perspective on the sport that I love. Agility in the US has some commonalities with agility in Australia but there’s some significant differences as well. Daisy has also travelled and competed on the European scene  and the competition is also vastly different there too. Like any sport or hobby in life there are always different levels of participation amongst the players. For some (the minority) it is their income, their sport and their passion that pretty much consumes them everyday. For others it is their chance to keep their dogs entertained, maintain a social group and get outdoors on the weekend. There are those who have regular day jobs and pour every spare minute they have outside of their job trying to climb to the top of the agility competition scene. Then there’s the lazy trainers who still like to keep it a competitive challenge for themselves and their dogs but are just not quite as obsessive or disciplined as they should be for the level they are trying to attain. That last group is me completely. Daisy asked me why I didn’t enrol in some of the online classroom opportunities – my reply was “Isn’t there deadlines for when you have to submit your videos? Don’t you HAVE to give feedback or you get kicked out? Isn’t there some sort of enforced online social interactions I’d have to engage in?”. I know what I was like with assignments at Uni. I don’t think the commitment suits me. She just gave me this look – probably an expression implying how lazy can one person get given that I’m not even working this year. When push comes to shove I do get the stuff done that I need to get done. Eventually. I mean I got all the crap together and did the whole online application process needed to get my US Visa approved. And that took time, planning, some forethought and some organising. I guess if I want something bad enough then I’ll do whatever needs to be done to get it. I think that whole understanding has become my mental safety net so to speak. I think it probably helps with the whole zen approach to when things don’t happen or when I don’t get something. I figure oh well I can’t have wanted it that bad then. For a hoot I conned cajoled Daisy into running Cypher in his first trial of 2012 last Friday night and then discovered that it’s clearly all my fault he never runs clean because she ran him clear for 4th place.

Daisy and Cypher

I’m going to miss my dogs this year. I’ll be away from them from April 20th through to May 28th. That’s at least 6 weeks right there. Then I’ll have all of June with them. But that’s pretty much it. July 1st I’ll be in the US and I won’t see them again till January 2013. I want to capitalise on my time with them right now. We’re going on lots of walks, I’ll take them swimming, train them every day, teach them new stuff. Having lost a couple of dogs now to cancer and other unknown causes it’s amazing how much your perspective on things change. One of my favourite moments in the whole time span of my life is every moment I get to step up to a start line of an agility course with them. There are very few moments when you’ll find me grinning bigger than that. I certainly have an addiction to those moments and addiction to my furry family members who I am lucky enough to share my life with. Don’t get me wrong. I’m just as addicted to having my two legged loved ones around me too. I’m not completely misanthropic. But there is something about sharing the love of a dog (or three) that is just inexplicably special.

Random observations from over the last week –

  • Some ants are vindictive little buggers that just bite you for the hell of it (he stopped laughing once I crushed him into the ground – however my hand still looks like a very botched botox experiment)
  • We should all pay more attention to what our feet and hips are doing – dogs like to read those parts of our anatomy the best. Especially when running flat out negotiating agility obstacles.
  • For some reason Supernatural is read as a bromantic soap opera by those who have no prior knowledge of the show whatsoever. Whether this is a legitimate interpretation or just one made to incite the indignant reactions of those who know better is unclear.
  • Bon Qui Qui on youtube makes a Jersey accent sound hilarious and the words COMPLICATED ORDER!!!! become your default response to anyone who asks of you anything that you even have to slightly think about.
  • Nutella can actually make oatmeal semi-appealing and less like a food served in third world orphanages.
  • Cypher (my 7 year old Border Collie) does a good impression of a crack snorting wart hog when running round an agility course.

Stay tuned for a more detailed Daisy Peel write up. For those curious about what kinds of things we did during ten hours of an advanced handling agility seminar between the eating of lollies (aka in US speak Gummies).