Schroeder's View

Monday, February 5, 2007

Surviving the Season

It's winter and for most of us we suffer from a bit of cabin fever and a few bouts of boredom. I think it may have something to do with the lack of sun and fresh outdoors oxygen that most of us experience as the inclement weather drives us indoors.

We are in need of some alternate realms of entertainment. Do what you have to do to stay sane - within the limits of legality, of course.

If you absolutely can't find anything to amuse yourself with during the cold snowy days, here are a few ideas for the easily bored:

* See how long you can hold a note: Inhale deeply and then try to make a noise, any noise, for as long as you can. This will almost certainly annoy all others within earshot, so if you aren't alone, hope they are bored enough not to mind.

* Try not to think of penguins: This is a bit tough because while trying too hard not to think of something, you can't help but remember what it is that you are trying to avoid thinking of. If you try too little you end up thinking about penguins anyway. Pardon me for bringing it up.

* Repeat the same word over and over until it loses its meaning: Pick a random word out of a magazine and say it aloud to yourself until it becomes a meaningless set of noises.

* Pretend to be a car: Make the appropriate revving noises in your head as you walk and add a racing commentary as you pass strangers in the mall, hall or where ever. Use blinking eyes as turn-signal indicators for extra authenticity.

* Drive people nuts with humming: Keeping a straight face, mouth closed, make a low pitch humming/buzzing noise and see what type of reaction you might get. Where the heck is that coming from? This is great for quiet places such as libraries.

* Step off a step with your eyes closed: Pretend that it is a cliff. To benefit from this you must have a vivid imagination.

* Toothpick art: Bend a toothpick as many times as you can without breaking it. When you do, title it a work of kinetic art, then sell it on eBay.

* Have a bunny race: Gather up all of your dust bunnies from under the furniture, line them up and use your hairdryer to speed them across the floor. If you're really desperate for fun, name them.

If none of these ideas do it for you, I suggest the good old basics to while away some time while waiting for spring - challenge someone to a game, even if it's just Tic Tac Toe, or tackle a good long novel.

For me, curling up with a warm blanket and a Lifetime Movie marathon works wonders to beat the winter blues. Stay warm!

* Reach the columnist at tschroeder @stormlakepilottribune.com