Friday, December 18, 2015

Doing nothing is good?!

So being a high schooler, I have to put up with parents bugging me. One thing they don't like is me spending too much time on my phone. Its a reasonable concern and one I won't begrudge them. What I have a problem with is when I have nothing else to do and they insist I get off my phone. Yesterday I was in a car for about 30 minutes, coming back home from my sisters basketball game. Since my sister wasn't playing, I sure as hell wasn't paying attention and was reading Hacker News threads.

During the car ride, my mom demanded I get off my phone.

Now one of my admitted faults is that I don't idle well. My mind likes to be crunching on something, even if its vapid and pointless to a ridiculous extent. My mom tried to justify this by saying doing nothing is sometimes good. Since when? I hate being forced by fiat to just do nothing and I don't understand the arguments as to how it could possibly ever be good to sit idle for five minutes. For my personality type, its not relaxing, it's mind numbing and agonizing. Listen to music, write, watch tv, code, read news threads, do homework, anything to avoid having to sit still and do nothing. Hell, I sometimes do multiple things at once, like listening to Pandora while writing this post. Now I accept the idea that negative consequences are things one has to deal with. What I hate is the puritan idea that pain and suffering "builds character" and should be actively sought.

I guess what I'm saying is that I subscribe to a minimalist approach to work, come up with the simplest, most efficient way to approach a task and then execute it. If a task has no point, I get rid of it. Bill Gates said to give the hardest work to the laziest people and they'll find the most efficient way to do it, and I like to pretend I'm in that group. Earlier this week I had to do some practice with stacks and queues for UIL and while my code was considered weird (the question had to do with manipulating the order of a stack and I popped all the results into an array, sorted, and pushed 'em back in) I finished first with my problems. I tend to mentally automate my tasks and explore all of what I can do before settling to a comfortable pattern. Of course, when I have to get actual work done I drop the whole exploration thing but still, that's how I handle things.

I dunno, maybe there's some good reason, but I don't get it. *Sigh* maybe its a cultural thing.

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