“More and more people in this country no longer make or do anything tangible; if your job wasn’t performed by a cat or a boa constrictor in a Richard Scarry book I’m not sure I believe it’s necessary.”

What Tim Kreider forgets in his excellent must-read, “The ‘Busy’ Trap” is that Scarry named the towns in his books Busytown & Workville. Even Scarry couldn’t resist the glorification of busyness as virtuous.

Lawyers & poets & mommies & daddies all appear in “What do people do all day” so MFA Dad & I apparently safe by the Kreider-Scarry standard. But that doesn’t save us from falling into the busyness trap. I have a major problem with this. … And I don’t even do that much. … And I realize it’s totally self-inflicted.

I now pause before using my busyness as an excuse. But it’s often the first thought to pop into my head when catching up with a friend.

What I’m realizing is there’s a very fine line between busyness & fullness. A full life is a rich one, indeed, but it’s hard to prevent the scales from tipping in the direction of busyness.

Are you just busy or do you manage to keep your life (& your family’s collective life) full but not overly so?



Filed under Lawyering, Living, Mothering, Parenting, Simplicity, Working

2 responses to “Busytown

  1. Katie

    This stuff is tough. We’re finding that limiting our intent usage (especially at night) makes the days feel much longer and freer. Scheduling time to meet with friends in person as opposed to lurking on FB or emailing or electronically-chatting also helps a lot.

    • Yes, the Internet & Facebook are dangerous, indeed! You’ve inspired me – I will make real plans with someone today to connect & I won’t tell hem I’m super busy! (And speaking of connecting, do let me know when you’re coming this way! I’m excited already!!)

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