Thursday, August 26, 2010

Getting Lucky

To say that I am a creature of habit doesn't quite cover it.  I take pleasure in ritual, and know that if things like exercise and early bedtimes and grocery shopping and time to cook aren't planned ahead, then it's a short road to fifteen extra pounds and general unhealthy crabbiness.  In order to fit these in around two children and a fifty-hour workweek requires a certain amount of well, rigid scheduling. 

So my days take regular paths to one of two or three running routes, then to the office for a predictable routine, and the same grocery store at a particular time on Saturday morning and then Target later on.  Boring for sure, but from what I understand, it also is the worst way to generate new relationships, opportunities, and luck in general.

Richard Wiseman, Ph.D, has spent his career figuring out why some people are luckier than others.  A big part of it is attitude--smiling and being friendly, for example, help a lot.  I am pretty sure I'm covered there, and have had my share of fun conversations in checkout lines and waiting for elevators.  But a big part, according to Wiseman, is also to do things outside of one's comfort zone, and then be alert to the opportunities to crop up.  This part is hard, especially for those of us who have settled into middle age and our own happy ruts.  But it seem to me it's food for thought on how not to turn into an old girl who is set in her ways, a not terribly attractive attribute in a single woman.   

In an article in O Magazine entitled, "How to Get Lucky," Wiseman's theory is given an introduction about a woman who gets a hot date--who becomes her husband--because she goes to a different dry-cleaning place.  That's an eye-roller, but the notion that one's mind opens up with change is certainly a good one.  That's what I look for in a good trip, and I've given up assuming others feel the same way. Though once a guy was cutting my hair who told me that at Epcot there was a pavilion that was "just like Paris."  Yes, I responded, except it's not. So maybe not everyone wants to expand their horizons for real.

This morning I needed to go out into the broader world to get my car's registration renewed, having left it until near the end of the month and so generating an inefficient errand of a half-hour or so.  So, in my time off the beaten track, here's what I got to see:

  1. A cowboy in a straw hat with a truck with at least eight tires and two gun racks.  I think maybe he'd driven across the back forty before he came into town, judging by the aroma off said tires.
  2. Someone who said he'd bought a veehickle about eight years ago, but was now fixin' to be finished rebuilding it and wanted to know how to have it registered as he didn't have a title. 
  3. A church sign that told me "Stop, drop and roll won't work in Hell." 
So local color and food for thought.  Next month I need to get new tires.  Can't wait for the excitement that ensues. 


  1. Oh, dear, I'm an old lady stuck in a rut! But I'm so comfortable:-)

  2. Why won't "stop, drop & roll" work in Hell?