I just read a great memoir by Bryan Charles called There's a Road Everywhere Except Where You Came From. There's a paragraph somewhere in the middle that captures the sentiment behind Apathy™ Anti-Bad-Mood Spray™ better than I have:
"It gave you a warm feeling as you walked through the lobby with your cash in your pocket, took the elevators up and returned to your cubicle.
Maybe it's not so bad after all. Maybe I can make it work. Someone will publish me someday. I can still write on weekends--
The feeling fades quickly.
Boredom breeds despair.
You walk through legal and sales. You hear voices, ringing phones, little computer blips announcing the arrival of new e-mail. You go into the conference room, step up on the vent, put your face to the glass. You think of jumping and how it would feel that first second in the air. Would you go into shock or die of a heart attack before you hi the ground? Or maybe those are just myths.
Only one way to find out.
You return to your desk. Your phone console tells you it's 2:35. How could it only be 2:35? You thought it was at least four. Your thoughts race and crash, scream and burn. You are nothing. You're dying. You're already dead.
Borders saves you.
Mrs. Field's saves you.
Banana Republic saves you.
The Starbucks counter in the cafeteria saves you.
The Internet saves you.
The Internet depletes you.
The women save you.
Jasmine saves you.
The elevator doors part and there she is, she and a friend in mid-conversation. You step in and the doors close. The car begins its descent."*
Exactly. That's why some people organize their entire day around what to order for lunch. I'm not there now, but I've been there. I remember it well. That's how I started making that best-selling aromatherapy spray. For my cubicle. For projects that sucked the energy out of me. This "How To" guide lists some ideas for using aromatherapy mood sprays at work, by the way. The handy new mini-mood spray packs are super portable for business trips. I think the sprays help the mind, at least a little bit.
But back to the book. Bryan Charles' memoir is the only piece on 9/11 I've allowed myself to read. I tore through it in a day and a half. Like me, he had a story about 9/11 but that story wasn't, perhaps, as tragic as so many others' but still a story of personal significance. Bryan Charles' story, like mine, was about something that changed for him as a result of that experience. It's the reason I held on to the suit I was wearing that day; the reason I accepted a job in Florida on 9/13, and the reason behind so many other small, but powerful and ultimately life-changing decisions. It's difficult to explain what happened to people who weren't in the city on 9/11 but my guess is that if I told Bryan Charles, he would understand. If you were in DC or New York on 9/11, definitely buy the book.
(*Excerpt from Bryan Charles' There's a Road to Everywhere Except Where You Came From: page 147-148.)