Kvetching

Sunday, October 27, 2002
 
Played any nutty headgames with yourself lately? Come on, don't bs me. I know you do. We all do. You know what I'm talkin about. They're those absolutely ridiculous games you play with yourself in your head that you never share with anyone cuz a) they'd think you're crazy and/or b) they wouldn't understand (not because they don't play these games themselves, they just don't play the same ones. Everyone makes up their own 'personal headgames').

I have this thing where every time I walk into the bathroom and lock the door I have to jiggle the knob exactly 3 times to ensure it's locked. It's not like I stop and think about it beforehand - it just happens...and it has to happen. If I only jiggle it twice then I start thinking about it. My brain won't let me rest until I go back and give it another just to be sure. I can't get rid of the compulsion and I don't fight it. I mean, it's not like I'm putting anyone's life in danger, I'm just ensuring my privacy. I don't fret about these little quirks cuz I know I'm not the only one who does stuff like that. Here's one that's a bit more complex, but still along the same lines.....

One of my girlfriends told me a couple years ago about one of her personal headgames. Now I warn you, once I tell you how it works you won't be able to not do it for some time. Eventually you'll work it out of your head but every now and again you'll come back to it and won't be able to stop. Remember, you were warned.

Here's how it works....

Picture a square in your head. At each corner of the square is a corresponding number. The numbers look like this: (just imagine the other 2 sides of the damned square!)

1----------2

3----------4

Now, every time you say a sentence, a syllable corresponds to a number, like this:

The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog.

(I had the corresponding numbers under here but when I post they get all squished together. ~grumble~ Just go along and put a number down for every syllable.)

As you can see (hopefully), this sentence ends on a '3', so, the square is not complete. She told me that she sometimes gets stuck in this game with herself and has to count out every sentence she hears using the number/square game. The problem is that she can't really rest until she finishes on 1. It's not that she makes up more sentences so that she ends back at 1, it's just that there's no sense of finality (much like me with the 3-jiggle rule) until she gets back to the beginning of the square. So she continues about her day having her regular conversations until her (or someone else's) sentence ends on 1. Then she quickly tries to banish the game from her head before she gets stuck on 2, 3, or 4 again.

When she told me about it I didn't even bother trying to pretend that it sounded insane. As I said earlier, we all do these crazy things. I never did anything like the number/square game, but that's only cuz nobody admits these games, and so it would be rare to find two people that do the exact same ones. With nobody talking about it there's no opportunity to be influenced by another's personal headgames - and also no opportunity to be assured you're not the only one who does these things.

I think it's high time we all go around telling each other about our personal headgames. I'm not saying I want to hear about weird-disgusting compulsions (I'm not gonna give an example, I'm sure you can think of something), I just want to hear the ones we can all relate to.

Hmmm...the more I think of this the better the idea gets. I could start a 'you're not crazy' support group. Screw that obsessive-compulsive label! You're safe-crazy! Nobody's getting hurt just cuz you can't ever leave the tv or stereo's digital volume display on an uneven number! Let's get together and talk about syllable-counting and lock-jiggling!

Ahh...another day, another blog, another million-dollar idea. :o)

(That last sentence ended on '3'. Damnit!)