Finding Your Tilt-a-Whirl

find your tilt a whirl

Creative Commons – Steve Snodgrass’ photostream

You know what’s awesome? When my upstairs neighbor pees, I can hear it in my bathroom!

My home in Boulder, Colorado is blanketed with day-old snowfall. The pups are asleep. The cats are…apparently balancing the budget. It’s been nonstop this morning and I’m fairly sure Peter just tried to shove Moto off of a “fiscal cliff.” In the middle of the relative morning calm, I’m happy.

Just insanely happy. Lucky.

It has nothing to do with gifts — but everything to do with people and the moments they bring me that make my soul do a cool flippy-flop thing.

I arrived home from a dinner on Tuesday evening and found myself walking from my garage to my front door as the snow had just started to fall. A sweet farewell had carried me to my front door with a smile and I nearly turned the doorknob to come back inside. But I didn’t. Instead, I went back out to the steps in front of my building and sat — no coat, no gloves. Just fresh flakes caressing my face and a winter’s brisk greeting competing for my attention while my mind was elsewhere.

So where was else?

On the realization that, in spite of the conspicuous lack of a mortgage and a few wanted bikes in my two-wheeled arsenal, I can’t think of anything I lack. I could walk through a mall and leave without bags. Go to Amazon.com and click away.

I want for nothing, as somehow, the world’s brought me an incredible array of people who have made my life a very bright place to be.

So today, as you prepare to tune-out for the impending holidays (if you haven’t already), I ask a few things:

That you unplug. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Flickr, LinkedIn, MySpace (really?), and every motherloving digital means of communication will be here waiting when you return. Remember people? They’re the ones we had to talk to face-to-face before our “smart” phones took over our lives.

That you rethink people. They’re not digital pictures with timelines and feeds. They’re living bits of beauty. It astonished me to see what Facebook considered the 20 biggest events of my 2012 to be, as they were just plain wrong and I realized why. It’s because the moments most memorable — the sweetest, saddest, make-your-stomach-flip, smile-inducing, and wide-eyed moments of your life don’t happen online. They happen when you’re standing in front of another person. That’s one thing that social media can never anticipate, interpret, or convey.

That you ask yourself, “Is this what I want?” Crazy question to ask of all that sits before you, isn’t it? But it’s the one question that can give you everything you ever wanted through the realization that something’s gotta give. It can also bring you to a “yes.” Your gut knows the answer, and it’s okay to smile when you see that thing that makes your soul do a little tilt-a-whirl move. That’s what smiles are for. And until you get to the tilt-a-whirl, the answer is probably “no.” And it’s cool if you’re facing a no. Go find your motherfucking tilt-a-whirl (and it’s always more fun when you take the ride with people you like).

And that’s it. That’s all I ask.

Unplug.

Rethink people.

Ask the question.

And find your motherfucking tilt-a-whirl.

 

 

3 comments
spacebarpress
spacebarpress

Word Erika. One of my best childhood memories is of riding the Tilt-a-Whirl with my sister at a fall fair in 1980-something NINE times in a row because the weather was bad and no one was in line. The carney didn't even take our tickets half the time. We STILL talk about it now. Because it was just such a great time.

In this day of so much technology, which I love, it's nice to remember the simpler times. Or even to just unplug now & be. 

christiano kwena
christiano kwena

Yesterday I walked looking down, all the way to the grocery shop, two hundred meters away. I heard all the footsteps of people passing me. From the sound of the footsteps, i could tell if people were in a hurry or not, and I did not look at them, I just heard.

Shalagh Hogan
Shalagh Hogan

Um, growing up, I had a cat named Mr. Moto Man, a large Siamese named after a sumo wrestler. And my fellow redhead, I am so happy that you are twitterpated with your people and it has nothing to do with Social media. Merriest to you dear. Love, Shalagh.

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  1. […] Finding Your Tilt-A-Whirl Ask yourself, “Is this what I want?” Crazy question to ask of all that sits before you, isn’t it? But it’s the one question that can give you everything you ever wanted through the realization that something’s gotta give. It can also bring you to a “yes.” Your gut knows the answer, and it’s okay to smile when you see that thing that makes your soul do a little tilt-a-whirl move. That’s what smiles are for. And until you get to the tilt-a-whirl, the answer is probably “no.” And it’s cool if you’re facing a no. Go find your motherfucking tilt-a-whirl ~Erika Napoletano at Redhead Writing […]

  2. […] phrase site: Erica Napoletano runs Red Head Writing a popular site because her rants are edgy, helpful (a winning […]