Producing Thought

Rasik - San Diego, California
Entered on April 28, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

As I sit on the bright red trolley, on my way from school to work, I stare and think. I look around and covertly study the people around me. I am no longer interested in the sights outside the trolley window because their awe and beauty diminished around my second trip. Every time the same buildings and billboards; they can no longer expand my world. However, my fellow passengers are always unique and interesting. All walks of life sit and stand in this moving world. For the most part this room filled with strangers is completely silent with one another. Some passengers I assume to be students are listing to their ipods or are reading a book for class. I also have much needed reading to do for class, and the trolley would seem like a great opportunity. However, I choose to sit and think.

I believe quiet reflection is important for expanding my mind. Sitting and thinking is unappreciated in today’s society. American culture pressures me to always “do do do” and does not leave enough time to just reflect and think. If my time is not spent working towards a concrete end goal, such as, a paycheck, a grade, or a degree than the time is considered wasted. This scale of worth pushes me to be in constant action. After work I am so exhausted I “vedge” on the couch and let television do the rest of my thinking, until tomorrow, where I do it all over again. The simple pleasure I get from thinking on the trolley ride, is more productive than eight hours of work, or watching reruns on TV. Now, I do not mean to denounce hard work. And I also understand that all tasks require thinking to some degree. But I believe, consciously observing my own thoughts and meditations, allows a deeper understanding of myself and my world. Without my ipod, my friends, TV, or a book available to distract me, my creativity is allowed to entertain my mind.

By secretly observing strangers on the trolley, I create reasons for their being here. Sometimes I create whole little stories of the people around me without them even knowing it. Poems have also been inspired by meditating on the state of the world and my relationships within it. This break in between school and work where I sit and reflect on the trolley is my imagination’s chance for control. Other passengers must observe me as inactive, or maybe they too are making up a background story for my unproductive appearance. Whatever way people choose to use their trolley time, I’m going to use mine productively, by sitting and thinking.