Over the weekend, my dad called. He began our conversation with, "So bad fires out there in California again, huh?"
"Fires?" I asked, not really focused as I was driving to the nail salon and trying to make a u-turn at that very moment.
"Yeah. Forest fires."
"I hadn't heard," I laughed a little, "Guess I don't know what's going on."
"Oh well. Why should you if they're not affecting you? I guess," my dad responded. I think he was being sincere and trying to make me feel better. I hope he wasn't picking on me.
"So your mother talked to Sabrina the other day. You remember Sabrina, right? She was one of her old students?" Yes, I did remember her. Phew, I wasn't totally failing this conversation. "Well she's back in China now and apparently that earthquake hit her town really hard."
Earthquake...earthquake...what earthquake? Eh...
"Oh no," I responded. I may not have known what he was talking about, but this was still bad news.
I faked my way through the rest of the earthquake talk. I was glad to hear that Sabrina and her family were fine. But I was annoyed with myself for having no clue what was happening in the rest of the world.
Note to self: Google China earthquake
Or what was happening in my own city, for that matter.
Note to self: Google California wild fires.
Indeed, I would say that most of the time, if something doesn't include me, or immediately affect me, or isn't happening right in front of my face, I am completely oblivious to it.
And this is terrible. TERRIBLE!
This is no way to go through life. All caught up in my own ridiculous imagination and redundant affairs and pathetic complaints.
The week before Mothers Day, it took me til Thursday to actually go out and buy a card. Why did I wait until so late? No reason. I kept forgetting I had to go out and do it.
And then on Mothers Day, when I phoned my mom, she reminded me that it was also my late grandmother's birthday. Did I know that? No, of course not.
I'm pretty sure that Devin must love me for qualities other than my knowledge of world news (Cooking abilities? Eye candy? Split the rent with him?) because I can not hold a conversation about politics or the economy or the war.
Note to self: Google Carl Rove
Google "Difference between Senate and House of Representatives"
Every night I come home from work, see news footage of a candidate on a podium somewhere and ask Devin, "Is there another primary today?"
"Ugh, how many are there?!"
"Well, there's one for every state."
So I ask myself, when did I become so self-absorbed? And, more importantly, why did I become so self-absorbed when the life I lead is neither fascinating nor complicated? It's a happy life, but it's a dull one. I mean, Paul McCartney led a much more interesting life than I, but at least he knew what was going on in India, right?
It would probably be entertaining to know about something, anything else.
And yet it is so much easier to stay in my bubble. And not know what is happening in the world, or in my neighborhood, or in the minds of people I know and care about.
I'm such a winner. Am I the only person who feels stuck in my own head all the time?