Friday, May 22, 2009


Confession: I didn't know how to spell the title of this blog. I had to look it up.

There's a beverage at one of my favorite bagel places that I love to order. I love iced tea, it's lightly sweetened, and it's got enough caffeine to wake me up in the mornings. Plus, the name is fun to say (Spontanei-tea.)

Unfortunately (or fortunately if you're me, I guess) that's about the extent of the spontaneity in my life. I know this will come as a shock to some of you (unless you're regular readers. Then you know me. But if you're new it's a shock. If you're new, hi there!!) but I'm a bit of a planner. A little Type-A. A smidge of a control freak. I sort of like routine. Change is not my friend. In fact, change in my life usually takes a congressional mandate if not an act of God. And even those aren't always successful.

Which is interesting because in a social situation, I am usually the planner. I love to have a group of friends together and it doesn't really matter WHAT we're doing. I'll get friends together whenever and wherever I can.* But, if left to my own devices, I'm finding that the older I get the more I like my weeks to have some routine. I like to go to work, go home and walk my dog, and then spend an quiet evening reading or knitting or basically trying to see if I really can get my couch to have a permanent indentation that is the exact size of my butt. And once I have an idea of how my evening is going to go, it's not that easy to change on a moment's notice. In short, I'm getting boring. But I secretly sort of like it that way.

The boy? The boy is all about spontaneity. The boy has no idea what he's doing most evenings. The boy probably doesn't know what he's doing in the next hour. And even MORE incredibly to me, he can have plans for this evening, and then change them at the last minute. OMG - I cringe just thinking about the uncertainty.

Despite what you may be thinking, this has never been a bone of contention in our relationship.**

But for two nights this week, I've found myself in completely unplanned situations. And I didn't die. The first was when I got to go bicycle shopping. After repeated badgering by Candy and I, zlionsfan opted not to fix the bike that he had languishing in his garage, but instead chose to purchase a pretty shiny new bike. From a bike shop. So I got to go shopping, I didn't spend any money, and I got to help spend a good amount of money that wasn't mine. What's not to like about that? As soon as that was over, I assumed we would each go our separate ways home.

But apparently there was dinner involved. This dinner was assumed to be part of the plans by two out of the three participants.

Um, okay. This was unplanned, but not completely out of the question. Hmmm....Casey had been walked, I was already with friends, I was hungry - why not eat?

Baby steps, people. Baby steps.

Dinner was fun. (I had fun at an unplanned event.)

So now that a bike had been purchased, we made plans to ride together last night. At one of my favorite places. And ride we did. Another friend, Nicole, came along and we rode our bikes for about two hours (with Casey who ran along with us the entire time.) It was fabulous. The weather was perfect, the riding was both leisurely and heartbreakingly impossible***, and there was plenty of conversation to keep us all occupied the entire time.

When we ended the ride, Casey was worn out. I stopped to say goodbye, and she immediately laid down on the ground. I started thinking about what I was going to have for dinner, and how peaceful the night would be with Casey completely passed out, and how I couldn't wait to get back to the book I was reading. And then Nicole mentioned dinner plans to Candy. And my immediate internal dialogue was, (no joke) "They're going to dinner? I wonder if it's just the two of them. Will they invite me? OH MY GOD WHAT IF THEY INVITE ME? WHAT AM I GOING TO SAY?"

At that point Nicole said, "Does anyone else want to come?"

And my mouth said, "Sure! Where are we going?"

I'm sure it seemed normal to everyone else, but I honestly don't remember making the decision to go. And once it was made, I'm not sure that everyone in my head was entirely happy about it. But we all went out to eat, and surprisingly, I again didn't die. In fact, I had a good time.

When I went home and was cuddled on my couch with a very tired dog, I reflected on my two unplanned outings. Hmmm....unplanned, but still good. Maybe the boy was right? Spontaneous is still okay. Maybe this is the beginning of a change? But wait! Change is bad!! And the boy is never right! What to do, what to do?

In a fit of rebellion I made the immediate unplanned decision to paint my fingernails. See? I can be sponteneous! Look at me go!!****

*As long as I have at least 24 hours notice.
**That was a bold faced lie.
***See, there's this hill...
****Baby steps, people. Baby steps.


Candace said...

I hope to make that hill by the end of summer!

I completely understand the unplanned thing...I don't usually like to be very spontaneous either. But...eating dinner out was in the back of my head as I LOVE to eat out. We could actually plan on eating or even bring a lunch or dinner to eat at the top of the hill. Picnics are always fun.

Jaclyn said...

I can completely relate. My boy happens to be quite spontaneous as well, and our jobs require a good deal of last-minute flexibility. I had a moment this week where I told him he drives me crazy! I'm adapting, but it is really hard sometimes!

AnnD said...

I am exactly like that! I like things predictable and get all weirded out when something upsets the delicate balance of my life. I hate being spontaneous and J. is just the opposite. (it must be a Heights thing)

I'll remember when we first started dating and he wanted to just drop by one of his friends' houses and say hello. Without calling. I remember saying: "You can't do that. You can't just drop by someone's house unannounced at 7:30 in the evening! It's not right!" But, he continues to do this to people...

zlionsfan said...

I would be interested to know how long it took you to get through the "bone of contention" paragraph.

I picture this scene:

ems: [typing] Despite ... what ... you ... may ... be ... (hee hee hee) ... thinking ... (hee hee hee) ... this has never
[laughs out loud]
been ... a ...
[falls out of chair laughing]
... bone ... of contention ...
[keyboard collapses due to shock waves caused by paroxysms of laughter]

I don't have problems with spontaneous decisions when I don't already have something planned. When I do have something planned, I prefer not to deviate from it, particularly when it involves people not currently with me. (Example: Hey, blow off your plans and just hang out here!)

Obviously, if the plans involve spending money, that's usually not a problem for me, but I do draw the line sometimes. I prefer not to spend money in some ways, like in movie theaters.

Did you become a fan of that place on Facebook? I knew they'd have a page for it ...