I’d rather fancy being an eccentric – one of those people that others might shake their heads about, but go away smiling nevertheless because their little idiosyncrasies are so endearing. People like my Aunt Edna, who never went anywhere unless she could take her goat Wilbur with her. People like my cousin in law Jerry who always brings a stack of scientific journals with him when he comes to visit and promptly installs himself in a corner to read them. Or people like my Uncle Bob, who spent worlds of time sending joke mails to his friends and relatives – my mother was the recipient of regular mailings from the National Enuresis Center – and you’ll have to look it up if you don’t know what it means.
Actually, that reminds me that I do have an eccentricity or two of my own (no, not enuresis!) I have this thing about words – if someone uses a word and I don’t know the meaning, I become
extremely restless and irritable until I can look it up. It’s very annoying to me to think of words being in existence and I don’t know what they mean.
I suppose you could call my habit of leaving an inch or so of liquid in the bottom of my coffee cup an eccentricity. My husband calls it annoying, especially when he picks the cup up expecting it to be empty and finds the dregs of my cold coffee still puddled in the bottom. But he really doesn’t have that problem anymore, because after 35 years of drinking coffee with me, he’s finally figured out I’m always going to do that.
And maybe it’s eccentric of me, but I cannot go to sleep at night unless I have a book in bed with me. Usually I’ll read myself to sleep, but last summer we had a power outage, and I was in a panic because I couldn’t find my book at bedtime.
“What do you need the book for?” Jim asked, puzzled. “There’s no light to read by.”
“I know,” I answered. “I just need to hold it until I go to sleep.”
Not very interesting eccentricities are they? Perhaps when I’m (really) old I’ll develop a fascinating set of odd behaviors that will be the envy of all my duller friends. Until then, I’ll just have to get by on my few meager quirks, and hope they’re at least slightly endearing to someone.
You can read about other ( hopefully more exciting) eccentricities right here and you can read my other Sunday Scribblings post right here