The last week and a half I’ve been living life from the floor. At the same time that my back is starting to hurt from consistently being propped up against a wall, there’s also a wonderful opportunity inherent in an empty apartment. It can turn into anything. Emptiness instigates change and is filled with possibility. This is the part of moving that I’ve always loved.
Back to working on the floor though. Has anyone else noticed that there’s a slightly different perspective on the floor? Any activity on the floor is instantly transformed into an informal event. Coffee with a friend, eating dinner, playing a game, doing laundry. Working from the floor has a different feel to it than working at a desk. I think I love the space of it. There’s always more room to spread out on the floor. I can change how I’m sitting, or I can read while lying down. I can sprawl out and think. There’s just something about living on the floor that appeals to my sense of informal creativity.
Not to long ago, while visiting my Florida cousins I had a whole conversation about the perspective shift that sitting on the floor triggers. I think it came after an ill-fated tickle fight on the bed of Cousin #4. Unfortuntely I’m doomed to be the smallest in the family (even though I’m older than all my cousins), so it wasn’t long after I instigated the fight that I found myself displaced onto the floor. A second later she also displaced her younger brother, Cousin #7 on top of me.
We spent a good few minutes laughing hysterically from our heap on the floor, but eventually we calmed down enough to launch our counter attack. Philosophy.
Cousin #7 and I glanced at Cousin #4’s smug grin at having thrown us both on the floor, then launched into a pompous dialog which transformed our position on the floor from something forced onto us into a transcendent experience. We prattled on about how sitting on the floooor changes one’s perspective and not everyone has the knowledge, maturity or openmindedness to understand the flooor. (The word floor was drawn out and pronounced with great importance while we eyed Cousin #4 meaningfully.) Cousin #4 listened with amusement, giggling at our pomposity as we disdainfully ignored her. She tried her best to return the favor and resume watching a show on her Kindle (which is what she was trying to do when we attacked her), but eventually gave in to the inevitable distraction that we represented.
Our rhetoric must have been masterful, either that or we wore her down with sheer persistence, because she inevitably gave in and joined us on the flooooor. Unfortunetely, understanding of the floooor is just not for Cousin #4, and as soon as she joined us we decided the flooor was a passing trend and we were over it. Instead Cousin #4 and I lept for her bed, stole her Kindle, and ignited the tickle fight all over again.
Although the whole episode was nothing but an amusing distraction from watching How I Met Your Mother reruns on her Kindle, I wonder if Cousin #7 or #4 realized that I wasn’t altogether being silly when I started the conversation about the wonderful possibilities of being on the floor. A lot of my favorite memories and best ideas are from moments when the couch or a desk just didn’t feel right, so instead I decided to think on the floor. Some of my best essays were written at 2AM, sitting on a dorm room floor. I’ve done some of my best studying from the floor and all my bills are done on the floor. As silly as it is, I like sitting on the floor!
That’s what this is though. A silly post, for a silly moment when life is in transition and everything still needs to be figured out. In some ways I think these are the moments that define who we will be and how we will take the uncertainty of our future.