I hate everyone I meet and want to go home.
August 5, 2015 12:13 PM   Subscribe

Stress Fantasy: Overwhelmed by the relentless p_a_c_e of it all, I decide to abandon the Internet and live a simpler life founded on principles of health and self-sufficiency. I move to an organic farm and learn to make my own yogurt.
Reality: I cannot boil water, let alone handle live cultures. I become incredibly sick after eating the yogurt and blog about it before I die.
posted by griphus (90 comments total) 125 users marked this as a favorite
 
As Tech Booms, Workers Turn to Coding for Career Change
Stress Fantasy: I learn code and make a shit ton of money through very little effort. The money funds my “work.”
Stress Reality: I am incapable of learning code, make no money, and spend my free time napping.
posted by standardasparagus at 12:18 PM on August 5, 2015 [41 favorites]


> I plan the first leg of my journey very poorly and spend most of my time at the hostel. I hate everyone I meet and want to go home.

Somebody read one of my travel journals.
posted by The Card Cheat at 12:19 PM on August 5, 2015 [20 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I get fired from the job I hate, take some time to find myself while living on unemployment, learn a new skill, and get a job doing something awesome before my unemployment runs out.
Stress Reality: I get jerked around by my former employer over unemployment, who also tries to screw me out of half my final paycheck, and stress for four months before settling on the first decent paying job that comes my way.
posted by SansPoint at 12:29 PM on August 5, 2015 [28 favorites]


Oh god, this is too close.
posted by Sokka shot first at 12:30 PM on August 5, 2015 [16 favorites]


My stress fantasy: living alone for awhile in my parent's basement or attic as a 41 year old man with a family and career. It sounds like an isolated retreat where I'd have supplies on hand and I 'd get to hang out with my parents whom I haven't seen more than once or twice a year in recent years. Also, I can stay up late doing whatever I want without worrying about getting up early the next day.

Stress reality: I'd feel like I was overstaying my welcome two weeks in as we get sick of each other's idiosyncrasies that we've forgotten. Also, I'd also really miss my family on day one as I fall asleep at 9:30pm watching HSN.
posted by SpacemanStix at 12:37 PM on August 5, 2015 [2 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I will go home and spend a week in the bosom of my loving family, whom I love unconditionally and who love me unconditionally in return. There will be long talks with the people I miss about our lives with lots of laughter and memories.

Stress reality: I go home for a week and we spend 6 long uncomfortable days with each other after the fight that broke out the very first evening about politics. We're not sure how we're related.

Stress fantasy: I will grow a vegetable garden and spend long evenings with my hands in the dirt carefully and lovingly tending my plants. We will have wonderful meals from the bounty of this garden on a beautiful wood table set in pea gravel in the middle of said garden with real linen, soft lights, and delicious drinks.

Stress reality: I forget to start seeds so I must buy them. Horrified by the prices, I buy exactly 6 plants, 3 of whom die in the first week. The other 3 I spend the rest of the summer hating due to their propensity for wilting at even a glimpse of a day without water. I get exactly 5 vegetables, 3 of which are eaten by squirrels, the other two being some kind of bean I eat at the kitchen counter after dipping them in ranch sauce I got from McDonald's.
posted by barchan at 12:37 PM on August 5, 2015 [127 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I've become too "addicted" to the web and social media, so I take a week with no online activities and finish all the projects that have languished in the shadow of Internet.

Stress Reality: Day one of my data detox, I'm posting this.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 12:40 PM on August 5, 2015 [71 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I enroll at a practically-free graduate program at a university in a scenic, libertine, and rigorously socialist European country. I study film and marine biology and drink wine beneath the midnight sun. Women with sexy accents laugh at my witty cultural observations.
Stress Reality: Nobody in European country gets my jokes. I fuck up the visa and get deported after six months.
posted by theodolite at 12:40 PM on August 5, 2015 [26 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I move to Northern Minnesota to the tree farm owned by my girlfriend's family, build a tiny wendy house, and make my minimal living writing freelance articles now and then.
Stress Reality: Mosquitoes.
posted by maxsparber at 12:44 PM on August 5, 2015 [40 favorites]


Stress fantasy that I'm actually doing: I rent a bungalow on the beach about an hour on the train away from my home. Over the next two weeks, I quit smoking with the help of Chantix, and the withdrawal and side effects cannot even touch me. I am serene. I am happy grilling food, having strawberry margaritas in townie beach bars, taking surf lessons, riding my bike to the grocery store, and walking the boardwalk. My friends will come to visit and bring news of Stress City, which I can't even remember.

What will probably happen: The beach gets dull, the Chantix side effects make me leave nail marks in my palms, it's too hot to bike, the beach townies aren't cool after all. I spend my two weeks watching PBS documentaries on my phone, drinking Too Much Rosé on the bungalow's futon, and taking the train an hour back to Stress City to visit friends.

Wish me luck!
posted by functionequalsform at 12:46 PM on August 5, 2015 [29 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: After finishing a lot of projects and being wrung out all the time I will devote August to self-care and quiet, reading and repairing my body and my mind

Stress Reality: Project launch goes bad requiring me to haul ass and I get an allergy attack so bad I'm on multiple pills a day that render me both sluggish and twitchy in fitful bursts. Nothing is accomplished.
posted by The Whelk at 12:49 PM on August 5, 2015 [2 favorites]




Stress Fantasy: I become the director of a small library in rural Wisconsin, where I make friends with all my patrons, own a large dog, write novels in the evenings, and go kayaking on the weekends.

Stress Reality: I cancel the director interview because, with a 102 degree fever, I fail my driver's license test and I'm not sure how I would get to rural Wisconsin.
posted by Jeanne at 12:49 PM on August 5, 2015 [8 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: After getting my cicerone certification, drawing up a careful business plan, finding backers and a lovely affordable space, I open the first Kent-style micropub in North America.

Stress Reality: I like drinking in bars more than I like owning and running one and people do not understand the concept so I become increasingly surly.
posted by Kitteh at 12:53 PM on August 5, 2015 [9 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: Instead of paying rapidly rising rents I buy a ship-shape little cottage before interest rates go up. The mortgage is less than my current rent, and I sock away the difference in an interest-bearing account for minor repairs and gardening supplies.

Stress Reality Fantasy: The only thing I can afford is in terrible condition but hidden costs and insurance make my monthly expenditures explode, and I can't afford to leave my house much less fix the roof that caves in. I hide from angry neighbors in my leaky basement. There is no garden because I have no clue what I'm doing. Also, my cats hate me.

Stress Reality: I'm so scared I'll make The Wrong Decision that no decisions are made. One cat hides, the other tries to steal her food.
posted by Orange Dinosaur Slide at 12:56 PM on August 5, 2015 [20 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I will work from home 80% of the week; freed from my daily commute, I will have the time to jog every morning, enjoy a leisurely breakfast, and work at my own pace with breaks for short restorative naps or coffee with my friends. I will pick up my son from daycare early and answer a few emails after he's gone to sleep for the night.

Stress Reality: All my coworkers in the Eastern time zone schedule me for 8 AM calls; I am given projects that require series of calls to prepare, check in, and debrief; breakfast is a protein bar eaten in the five minutes between calls. My restorative naps are cancelled by last-minute meeting requests. My ass is glued to the couch and I do not get a minute to shower until 10:30 AM. I pick up my son from daycare ten minutes before close and am too tired to do anything else but watch TV after he's asleep for the night.
posted by castlebravo at 12:57 PM on August 5, 2015 [16 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I discover that, through some inexplicable loophole, the Canadian citizenship process I just barely failed to complete many years ago because my life fell apart is still valid, and all I have to do to become a Canadian citizen is take the test. Which I ace because I know the one bilingual province is not Quebec (purely francophone) but New Brunswick. I move back and find contentment in a land of peaceful liberal decency with good health care, a real social safety net, high-quality public services, respect for the environment, and general goodness.

Stress Reality: It turns out Canada has been run by Stephen Harper for the last 10 years and that Canada just isn't there anymore. It's like Mississippi with six-foot snow drifts.
posted by Naberius at 12:59 PM on August 5, 2015 [59 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I move out to a small rural town and get a small rural job. Everything costs less to the extent it's like money doesn't matter at all. It's a different, better world.

Stress reality: it's the same world, just with a longer drive to Target.

Stress fantasy: I can make positive changes in my life
Stress reality: it's just that everything I try to do, nothing seems to turn out right

Stress fantasy: I'm done with metafilter
Stress reality: how many favorites do I have now?
posted by bleep at 1:10 PM on August 5, 2015 [26 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I will get up early, go for a run, have a good breakfast, and then spend a few hours doing all the little things I need to accomplish. I will be done by mid-afternoon, allowing me to work on that little side project I've been meaning to get to.

Stress reality: Before I even put on a sports bra, I get on the internet to look up the pace of my last run on google docs. Around noon, on the couch in my pajamas, I realize I just spend an hour reading about the British royal family on Wikipedia. Why is is that every goddamn article fest on Wikipedia eventually leads to the British royals? I should look this up.
posted by barchan at 1:10 PM on August 5, 2015 [52 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I give up the corporate rat race and open a small, independent theater company that produces the work of heretofore-unknown playwrights and live a simple, frugal lifestyle with my partner, happy in making art.

Stress reality: The single play I'm trying to get done in New York is made impossible because the people I hired to make it happen never actually answer their emails unless it's about parties or to say "ha ha" at a joke someone sent.
posted by xingcat at 1:14 PM on August 5, 2015 [4 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: Following a particularly difficult case, I take a quiet position teaching profiling at the academy, while setting out on a course of therapy with an erudite and well-respected psychiatrist.


Stress Reality: I am drawn into an increasingly disturbing set of bizarrely-staged killings. My therapist eats people and wants to be my murder-husband.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:18 PM on August 5, 2015 [87 favorites]


Oh geez.

Stress fantasy - I quit working in technology and do something tangible, like pouring coffee or grinding concrete into gravel, because at the end of the day you can point to a thing that you've done that is real. Also it's not full of bullshit suits.

Stress reality - Trade one RSI for another or host of others, stupid bullshit is just a different flavor. Also, can't drink coffee anymore because it smells like work.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 1:19 PM on August 5, 2015 [11 favorites]


Stress Reality: I realize I’ve never even been to x, I just like that the houses are painted pretty colors and the rent seems sustainable on a savings budget, but more people get the same idea and the rent rises and soon I’m priced out of my sweet x apartment (are there sweet x apartments?) and into a cabin somewhere.

This is ALL OF US.
posted by bitteschoen at 1:22 PM on August 5, 2015 [1 favorite]


Tea addiction and my need to asses the nearest source of boiling water at all times comes in handy!
posted by Artw at 1:22 PM on August 5, 2015


by the way, that Stress Fantasy/Stress Reality post of mine is a true story. Ugh.
posted by SansPoint at 1:30 PM on August 5, 2015


Stress Fantasy: I will get involved with the local Maker group and learn about 3D printing. I save up my money and buy a good 3D printer. I'll volunteer with Re-Enable, making affordable prosthesis for kids. I'll invent new and interesting polymers and ways to print with multiple filament types. I'll register several patents and start my own business which will be wildly successful.

Stress Reality: I don't even go to the local MakerFaire, or if I do, they don't like me. I never buy a 3D printer because I can't justify the cost if I know nothing about it. I sit at home and watch Netflix.
posted by domo at 1:32 PM on August 5, 2015 [6 favorites]


Related: Tired Of The Seoul-Sucking Rat Race, Koreans Flock To Farming (NPR, Aug. 3, 2015)

Future: Tired of scraping to get by on a family farm, Koreans rush back to urban life with benefits and stability.
posted by filthy light thief at 1:34 PM on August 5, 2015 [3 favorites]


Stress Reality: My son is a stranger to me and I to him.
posted by boo_radley at 1:42 PM on August 5, 2015 [2 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: Life is a movie, with some madcap adventures and drama but also an inevitable "feel-good" resolution - a meaningful fulfilled existence, living happily ever after with one's soulmate and family and friends, and never having to worry about money or health (or anything else, for that matter).

Reality: Life ain't the movies. Whaddayou, stoopid??
posted by Greg_Ace at 1:43 PM on August 5, 2015


Stress Fantasy: When I finally get my BA, I will happily leave academia behind and get a stable job as a pipe-fitter in the local union.

Stress Reality: I decide to "just give grad school a shot."
posted by teponaztli at 1:46 PM on August 5, 2015 [6 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I will apply my knowledge of craft with my unusual perspective to genre to create exceptional pieces of thrilling yet satisfying literature. For an hour or two each night, I will build a body of work that enthralls both casual and dedicated readers, one that will eventually free me from the need for a day job. My long-held self image as a good writer will at last be confirmed.

Stress Reality: On the rare nights I'm not too exhausted by regular life, I spend twenty distracted minutes bouncing between the internet and fiction writing. From this comes a few paragraphs of cliched drivel less compelling than the ingredients list on a Rice Krispies box. Realizing that my pompous self-regard, lack of talent, and hobo-esque work ethic condemn me to be a wannabe, I sink into self-loathing. Then I notice that my wife is watching Rectify. Ooh, teevee! That's always the answer!
posted by Harvey Jerkwater at 1:52 PM on August 5, 2015 [11 favorites]


Stress fantasy: With a deadpan wit, confessing my setbacks in life leads to a cathartic release of emotions for me and a wry laugh for others.

Reality: Focusing on my failure does me no good. I don't need this shit. I remind myself that I'm not living The Good Life but I am living a good life.
posted by Monochrome at 2:00 PM on August 5, 2015 [7 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I join a yoga studio in town, hoping to get back into the yoga lifestyle after a few years off. Soon I will have yogi friends with whom I will travel and share secrets. My soul will be calm and my thoughts will be stilled at the first hint of an OMMMM. I easily slip into a thoughtful, vegan, aware lifestyle. I become bendy and beautiful and not the least bit self-righteous about it.

Stress Reality: I eat too many vegetables before a yoga class and blast a vicious fart during my first downward facing dog. Everyone tries to ignore the resulting miasma but eventually the instructor opens the window and suggests we adjourn to the courtyard where we can practice some deep breathing exercises in the fresh air.
posted by Elly Vortex at 2:06 PM on August 5, 2015 [31 favorites]


Stress fantasy: space
Stress reality: time
posted by generalist at 2:07 PM on August 5, 2015 [40 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I go out on medical leave from day job I am not interested in anyway. Terrifying hand injury turns out to be totally fixable. I can afford to be out of work for two months while I recover. I spend that time working on my comics and improving my graphic arts skills so I can find a job that doesn't add to hand injury. I suddenly have tons of time to draw comic books. I do a MeFiAsk and get good advice. Comics take off and I don't need a day job.

That was surprisingly cathartic.

Stress reality: Hand injury is not fixable. Doc tells me to suck it up. Lose job anyway because can't keep with work anymore. I can't find another job. Too scared of MeFi to do Ask. I move spouse and cat to my father's farmin Vermont. Lose remaining working fingers to frost bite. No one likes my comics.
posted by palindromeisnotapalindrome at 2:10 PM on August 5, 2015 [3 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I get in as one of the first 10 people at a pre-IPO startup, which gets bought for a billion dollars, making me a multi-millionaire overnight. Then I buy a house near the coast, and spend my time however I want.

Stress Reality: I get in as one of the first 10 people at a pre-IPO startup...again...which burns through its funding, rendering me jobless and I move to a low-rent area that's too far of a commute to afford a job at an established company. I spend my time looking for work while my friends buy houses near the coast, and spend their time however they want.
posted by Chuffy at 2:11 PM on August 5, 2015 [4 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: Realizing that I would rather drop cinderblocks on my feet than spend another 10 minutes on conference calls or in the edit room with people who use "creative" as a noun, I decide to quit my soul-deadening job producing commercials for high-fructose corn syrup delivery systems and go to grad school for something I genuinely love.

Stress Reality: Adjuncting.
posted by dersins at 2:20 PM on August 5, 2015 [12 favorites]


Stress Fantasy:

I am a fractal energy being gently enrobed in a sentient body, my tendrils extending out to
the quantum consciousness of the universe. On my corporeal form's dissolution I fade\expand gently into
a welcoming ocean of infinite love and acceptance

Stress Reality:

I am a meat-based self-aware aberration rotting toward nothingness.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 2:26 PM on August 5, 2015 [72 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: write hilarious MetaFilter comment, reap dozens of favorites.

Stress Reality: the comment that results from the topic of the thread gets a little too real. Select All, Delete, retry with different, more glib comment.
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:27 PM on August 5, 2015 [25 favorites]


Stress fantasy: Everyone follows the format of putting "stress fantasy" and "stress reality" in bold, and ushers in a new era of consistency.

Stress reality: I silently judge everybody who doesn't adhere to the clearly required and simple formatting guideline. I become embarrassed when someone else points out that I didn't manage to follow my own advice after the edit window closed, and I pretend Metafilter doesn't exist until I manage to convince myself everyone is done laughing at my embarrassment, 3 months later.
posted by fragmede at 2:44 PM on August 5, 2015 [18 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: Put down the phone and go bake cookies with my cooperative, delightful, and adorably-dressed children. Who will laugh sweetly while giving me hugs and proclaiming me the best mom ever.
Stress Reality: See SansPoint's comment, "by the way, that Stress Fantasy/Stress Reality post of mine is a true story. Ugh" Frantically scroll back up to make sure SansPoint wasn't the author of the therapist murder-husband post. Get sucked back in to reading the rest of the thread. Meanwhile the children who had been playing together nicely start arguing fiercely over whether the youngest does or does not have to wear pants. Decide we don't really need cookies anyway and maybe I'll just see if anything else interesting has been posted today.
posted by Dojie at 2:45 PM on August 5, 2015 [9 favorites]


Fantasy: Instead of sitting at my desk on the telephone for hours at a stretch, I will run long distances daily and enjoy my conference calls amid the cheap showiness of nature, thereby losing a ton of geek-weight, upping my dose of endorphins, and giving me a feeling of control over my own health, moods, and time.

Reality: Now I need new pants.
posted by Construction Concern at 2:49 PM on August 5, 2015 [2 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: sail to Nassau with grandfather, enjoy fun nautical adventure

Stress Reality: end up getting into a drunken fight, first mate breaks into captain's trunk and gets arrested, cook throws away grits for some reason and eats the corn I brought for myself, feel massively homesick, turns out to be the worst trip I've ever been on
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:55 PM on August 5, 2015 [35 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I go for a walk in the woods and stumble across a mysterious building. I see a door with a window next to it. I look in the window and see that it's a laboratory. The door is unlocked, and I walk inside. In the lab there is a brain sitting in a jar with wires all over the place. There's a screen on the wall. I walk up to it and see that the screen is displaying the exact image I'm seeing with my own eyes. I pinch myself and hear a small beep. I pinch myself again, and hear a small beep again. I realize, with horror, that the brain in the jar must be my own brain, and that my life thus far has been an illusion created by advanced computer technology. I walk deeper into the room and see hundreds of brains in hundreds of jars, all simulating the lives of other people. Why can I see this, and whose reality am I seeing? Is it mine alone, or do these other brains share it?

Stress Reality: All of the above happens, but also I discover that my brain looks really lumpy and unattractive compared to the other brains.
posted by teponaztli at 3:05 PM on August 5, 2015 [35 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: Nice things.
Stress Reality: Kids.
posted by Kabanos at 3:08 PM on August 5, 2015 [21 favorites]


s/Montreal/Berlin/
posted by acb at 3:17 PM on August 5, 2015 [2 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: it is discovered that I am the long lost heiress to a vast fortune and a castle in the woods. At the same time my manuscripts are discovered and declared to be the most important words ever written, and the publication ushers in an era of peace and understanding and the global emanations of our higher consciousness alert the cosmic conference that we are finally ready to be admitted into polite society.

Stress Reality: it is discovered that yet another disaster in the house means putting off retirement savings, and I get three more contract offers for less than a penny a word. War, strife, famine and injustice continue, and the only aliens to visit are joyriders fucking with the rednecks.
posted by dejah420 at 3:22 PM on August 5, 2015 [3 favorites]


prize bull octorok: "Stress Reality: the comment that results from the topic of the thread gets a little too real. Select All, Delete, retry with different, more glib comment.
"

sometimes you need to zig whne they expect you to zag.
posted by boo_radley at 3:30 PM on August 5, 2015


Dojie: "Frantically scroll back up to make sure SansPoint wasn't the author of the therapist murder-husband post. Get sucked back in to reading the rest of the thread. Meanwhile the children who had been playing together nicely start arguing fiercely over whether the youngest does or does not have to wear pants. Decide we don't really need cookies anyway and maybe I'll just see if anything else interesting has been posted today."

DOJIE IS LIVING IN MY HOUSE
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 3:35 PM on August 5, 2015 [7 favorites]


stress fantasy: retire before 40 and move to central america to eat arepas on the beach with a 3-legged dog

stress reality: they don't have lactaid in central america

i guess i can get it off of amazon tho
posted by poffin boffin at 3:37 PM on August 5, 2015 [4 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: Everything is fine. Nothing to worry about.

Stress Reality: DOJIE IS LIVING IN MY HOUSE
posted by Dojie at 3:43 PM on August 5, 2015 [11 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: you'll take a half-remembered bit of pop culture ephemera to AskMe, whose knowledgable denizens will tell you where it was from so you can look it up on YouTube and find closure

Stress Reality: though answerers also claim to remember the same thing, nobody can pinpoint it, thread turns into months-long obsessive search for the source, people spend hours coming through video archives, this once minor thing now haunts you and many people you've never even met at all hours of the day and even while you sleep, entire lives are consumed, you lose your job, your houseplants die, your partner leaves you, you wonder if all of your memories are implanted constructs, you question the very nature of reality itself
posted by prize bull octorok at 3:50 PM on August 5, 2015 [12 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: We move to Wyoming, a new life in the country. We set out in the spring with a trunk full of books about everything. We live off the land, adopt a fox cub, tell the kids stories, and you work on your loom.

Stress Reality: The crops all turned brown, the kids caught bronchitis, we run out of diesel. Then one weekend a friend from out East stole your heart. I said fuck it then and set out in the road again, lonesome road.
posted by five fresh fish at 3:55 PM on August 5, 2015 [5 favorites]


stress fantasy: by some quirky miracle, princess twilight sparkle is found to be real AND an american citizen of 35 years of age, runs for president, is elected, and everything is FRIENDSHIP, rainbows and butterflies for america

stress reality: do i call him mr president or the donald?
posted by pyramid termite at 4:16 PM on August 5, 2015 [6 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I will cruise the seas for American gold, fire no guns, shed no tears.

Stress Reality: I will sign on to a sloop which lists to the port with her sails in rags and has a cook in his scuppers with the staggers and jags. We will put to sea on the king's birthday, pumping like madmen all the way to Montego Bay for ninety-one days. On the ninety-sixth day we will sail again and we will spot a bloody great Yankee low down with gold, broad and fat and loose in stays but to catch her will take us two whole days. We will engage with our cracked four-pounders, but with a single shot the Yankee will sink us. The captain will be smashed like a bowl of eggs, and the main truck will carry off both me legs.


Subsequent Stress Fantasy: I will be in Sherbrooke.

Subsequent Stress Reality: After six years, I will finally make it back to a Halifax pier.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 4:23 PM on August 5, 2015 [25 favorites]


Subsequent Stress Fantasy: I will be in Sherbrooke.


I have lived this as a Stress Reality. DO NOT RECOMMEND.
posted by Kitteh at 4:26 PM on August 5, 2015 [3 favorites]


I have been a broke man on a Halifax pier. Also less than maximum fun.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 4:35 PM on August 5, 2015 [1 favorite]


Someday someone will ask me how I finaally learned all the verses to Barrett's Privateers and let me tell you, you have to work to get looks that weird from tall ships people.
posted by kalimac at 4:58 PM on August 5, 2015 [10 favorites]


How did you finally learn all the verses to Barrett's Privateers?
posted by I-Write-Essays at 5:22 PM on August 5, 2015 [3 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I quit my job and focus on our happy little homestead. I replace my income by blogging our pinterest-worthy life. I garden, homeschool the children, and take up painting.

Stress reality: I take a week off from work. It's hot and there are mosquitoes. Fuck the garden and the three cherry tomatoes that are trying to survive. One of the goats crushes a beloved pet chick, resulting in much sobbing from the oldest child. I refresh facebook & metafilter for hours. The goats escape their pen just as dinner is being served. While I am busy capturing them, the 5-year-old decides nobody is paying attention to her and runs away down the 1/4 mile dirt road. Dinner is delayed yet again as I try to find her. I count the days until school starts again.
posted by belladonna at 5:33 PM on August 5, 2015 [4 favorites]


Stress fantasy: As soon as I get a handle on this crisis I can kick back and start using the time left over from work and household stuff to finally relax.

Stress reality: There is always another crisis.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 5:58 PM on August 5, 2015 [7 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I will remember all the verses to "Barrett's Privateers" when I am drinking.


Stress Reality: God damn them all.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:02 PM on August 5, 2015 [18 favorites]


Stress fantasy: the fun stuff we do when family is in town is always right here. I can do this any time I want! So glad I live in this part of the world!

Stress reality: I don't leave home or change my clothes for 3 days.
posted by bleep at 6:03 PM on August 5, 2015 [4 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: In eighteen hundred and forty-six, on March of the eighteenth day, we hoisted our colors to the top of the mast, and for Greenland sailed away, brave boys, and for Greenland sailed away.


Stress Reality: Greenland is a barren land, a land that bears no green. Where there's ice and there's snow, and the whale-fishes blow, and the daylight's seldom seen, brave boys, and the daylight's seldom seen.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:11 PM on August 5, 2015 [12 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: This is the summer of me. I will learn to be happy being single. I will go to the beach as often as I can, because it's my favorite summer thing to do every year. I'll actually spend more time on that volunteer coding project and feel good about helping people.

Stress Reality: I get into an accident and totals my car, so I have no ability to go to the beach whenever I want until I can afford to buy a new car. I injure my left thumb because of a really really stupid reason (catching a football badly), letting it go untreated for weeks thinking it's just a jammed thumb, finally going to see a doctor and gets told I got a stretched ligament which requires surgery to fix, and now for the rest of the summer my thumb is in a cast and it takes forever to type (even this paragraph). I'm demoralized by how much work is involved in coding a whole project by yourself because I've always coded with a team, so I do the minimum for the volunteer work and feel horrible about it. And why is everyone getting engaged and I'm never going to find anybody. I binge on Netflix almost daily because I can't believe how often I actually use my non-dominant hand, and there's not much I can do with this huge cast on it.
posted by numaner at 6:17 PM on August 5, 2015 [6 favorites]


I take a week off from work. It's hot and there are mosquitoes.

Stress Fantasy: I set my alarm for 6:00 a.m. so that I can get more done in the cool of the morning. After a quick cup of coffee I get started cutting out all of the wild clematis strangling the rose hedge. Then I spray the 400 foot cedar hedge for bag worms. Then I dig out the lilac bush to make space for the new fountain. I come in when it gets hot and start painting the kitchen cabinets before lunch.

Stress Reality: I can't believe I am getting up at 6:00 when I don't have to but I drag myself out of bed. It is so early the coffee maker hasn't even started yet. I go outside to discover that far from being "cool" it is already 86 degrees but feels like 100 because of the high humidity. The mosquitoes are ravenous and I have just discovered that I have developed an allergic reaction to the non-deet spray. I fill three trash barrels full of clippings and have only cleared about 1/3 of the rose hedge. I have sweated so much my shirt is now translucent so that the neighbor children going to school can see what color bra I am wearing. I go inside and it is only 8:30. I am too hot and itchy to do anything except sit in front of the computer. It is a long time until lunch and I am starting to get drowsy....
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:28 PM on August 5, 2015 [4 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: After I'm done with this huge work project, I'm going to take a three-week vacation in Mexico. I'll do it like my old backpacking days, with no set itinerary, staying in hostels and homestays, and eating street food. I'll hang out with cool people from around the world and Mexico while sleeping in a shack on the beach, and I'll hike to indigenous villages in the mountains and learn about the politics of Chiapas.

Stress Reality: I get a waterborne stomach bug from an icy drink my first morning in Oaxaca and spend most of the first week moaning in my hostel bed. It turns out I'm staying in a party hostel and I have to fend off both entreaties to go clubbing at 1 in the morning and lectures about American politics from British gap year kids. Instead of eating mole and tlayudas, I eat saltines and ramen. I forgo the beach shack idea and book a room in a small B&B a ten-minute walk from the beach. When I get there, my stomach gets better, but it's so hot and muggy that all I can do is lie on the beach, take naps, and engage in polite discussion with the Republicans looking to buy a place nearby but concerned about crime. By the time I get to Chiapas I'm too exhausted for politics or hiking, and it's so cold that I find myself going to bed at 9 pm to warm up. I finally perk up when I get to Mexico City (which is really an amazing city) but by then I only have three days left in my trip.

New Stress Fantasy: I need to go back to Mexico ASAP and do it right this time.
posted by lunasol at 6:56 PM on August 5, 2015 [3 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: Quit my job for health- and stress-related reasons. Afterwards, spend several months in intensive therapy, re-calibrating my life goals, and resuming all the writing that work made difficult to complete. All the while, I'd vow to never do private sector work again and start applying furiously (but smartly!) to non-profit and government organizations, many of which would graciously call me back to schedule an interview. I'd work out every day, go back to a ketogenic diet, and return to the working world happier and healthier. Like a hero. An epic hero.

Stress Reality: I have re-watched both seasons of Bojack Horseman for the fifth time in a row, and I snort - loudly - at the same jokes, every goddamn time. I've spent fewer hours on job applications than I have collectively on video games, ordering pizza, eating pizza, regretting eating pizza, and staring blankly at new documents in Word. My primary reaction to vacancies at usajobs.com is "nope." While I - in a rare Hail Mary event - have my rent covered for a few months, the horror stories from friends who have been unemployed for longer have rolled in. If there was an actual panic button, I would be too out of spoons to reach over and hit it - even though I definitely should, repeatedly and with gusto, until the adults come.

(this is also real life for me right now. *sob*)
posted by Ashen at 7:30 PM on August 5, 2015 [4 favorites]


Stress fantasy: Write an open letter to the president and publish it on website. Millions will read the letter, President Obama included, and as a result I will get an agent and a book deal and sell my movie life rights and buy a cottage and a row boat.

Stress reality: Attempt to send letter via White House web form, only to discover form doesn't accept letters that long. Attempt to send letter via e-mail, but receive an immediate bot response saying the box is no longer monitored. Finally print and mail the letter, only to receive a response from a suicide hotline six weeks later. Wonder whether this means the president has not read my letter.
posted by brina at 7:41 PM on August 5, 2015


Stress fantasy: I will make up for the tedium of my day job by volunteering at exciting local arts events run by people whose lives look like all of my stress fantasies. I will be charming; they will like me and invite me to hang out.

Stress reality: I stand there awkwardly while they look at me and wonder who brought their mom, even though I am not that much older. I work really hard, for which they are thankful. Nobody invites me to hang out.
posted by atropos at 8:40 PM on August 5, 2015 [7 favorites]


TheWhiteSkull: "Stress Fantasy: In eighteen hundred and forty-six, on March of the eighteenth day, we hoisted our colors to the top of the mast, and for Greenland sailed away, brave boys, and for Greenland sailed away.


Stress Reality: Greenland is a barren land, a land that bears no green. Where there's ice and there's snow, and the whale-fishes blow, and the daylight's seldom seen, brave boys, and the daylight's seldom seen.
"

Stress Fantasy: I've heard there's a beautiful willing woman behind every tree in Greenland!

Stress Reality: Trees? In Greenland?
posted by Samizdata at 8:46 PM on August 5, 2015


Stress Fantasy: I will use the summer break to completely reorganize and prepare all my course materials for the Fall semester.

Stress Reality: . . . fuck
posted by bibliowench at 8:56 PM on August 5, 2015 [7 favorites]


Every one of these Stress Realities make me think at the end that Garrison Keilor is going to ask us how great it'd be to have a slice of rhubarb pie right now.
posted by JHarris at 9:24 PM on August 5, 2015 [8 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I go back in time and make out with my past self. We really "get" each other.

Stress reality: My past self is way too suspicous and well-read to fall for whatever trickster-god shenanigans are going on here. She drops out of college and runs far far away to get away from me. Because she never finished college I never find out the way to go back in time and cease to exist.
posted by bleep at 10:30 PM on August 5, 2015 [1 favorite]


Stress Fantasy: Metafilter
Stress Reality: Reddit
posted by gottabefunky at 10:49 PM on August 5, 2015 [19 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: Find the hand of Franklin!

Stress Reality: it is always early in the morning and there are so many drunken sailors
posted by jetlagaddict at 11:25 PM on August 5, 2015 [2 favorites]


Someday someone will ask me how I finaally learned all the verses to Barrett's Privateers and let me tell you, you have to work to get looks that weird from tall ships people.

Having played in a traditional music band or three, I must say that Barrett's Privateers serves the same function in folk that Johnny B. Goode does in rock: when a bunch of people are jamming and get to That Song, you know the room is out of ideas and it is time to pack up and go.

Also it is hard not to overwrite the song with its affectionate parody, "The Last of Garnet's Homemade Beer."
posted by ricochet biscuit at 2:15 AM on August 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I remember you fondly and wish you well.
Stress Reality: I hear of your failures with a vindictive glee that I make no effort to hide.
posted by Orange Dinosaur Slide at 4:26 AM on August 6, 2015 [14 favorites]


Stress fantasy: Kids

Stress reality: Toddlers
posted by lollymccatburglar at 6:00 AM on August 6, 2015 [11 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I will buy a rambling old house in the Upper Peninsula and conduct my freelance job from there with some manner of interweb jiggery-pokery. We'll grow blueberries in season and once a year my extended family will come up and bring a boat, and we'll play beer pong in my yard well into the night despite being adults.

Stress reality: Christ almighty it's a long drive to the Yooper.
posted by We put our faith in Blast Hardcheese at 9:10 AM on August 6, 2015


JHarris: "Every one of these Stress Realities make me think at the end that Garrison Keilor is going to ask us how great it'd be to have a slice of rhubarb pie right now."

Stress Fantasy: Ooooh, rhubarb pie, I could go for some of my grandmother's famously delicious, blue-ribbon-winning strawberry-rhubarb pie right now!

Stress Reality: Rhubarb makes me fart like a mofo and when my younger cousins figure this out they spend the next three hours chasing me around my grandparents' house with my bloated, gassy stomach, trying to give me tight hugs that squeeze my stomach and make the farts come out, then laughing hysterically as they run away, while 22-year-old me tries not to die of a combination of mortification and stomach pain.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:14 AM on August 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I will take over this Girl Scout troop and we will model it on the Lumberjanes and be awesome in all ways as the girls learn life skills and have fun and they'll all want to stay in it through high school at which time they will graduate and get great scholarships based on their archery skills and Gold Award projects.

Stress Reality: other parents
posted by The corpse in the library at 9:30 AM on August 6, 2015 [13 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I will finally hie myself to the gym and hire a trainer and take up CrossFit and get back into weightlifting, and in only a few short weeks, I will look like Annie Thorisdottir, and men will line up around the block to respectfully ask me out.

Stress Reality: I will spend four years waking up at 3:30 am to lift, hire the trainer, take up CrossFit, make my own garage gym with squat rack, carefully eat a ketogenic paleo diet blessed by Robb Wolf himself; and after all this, I annoyingly still look like myself, only smaller. The only question men ask me is how much I bench.
posted by culfinglin at 10:39 AM on August 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Stress Fantasy: Quit your job as an east coast banker to move to Oregon and spend some more time with the family. Do some camping, some rafting. Maybe even look into taking up hunting.

Stress Reality: Everybody dies of dysentery.
posted by logicpunk at 10:41 AM on August 6, 2015 [18 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: I will stop taking the subway riding to work and instead get up earlier and bike the hour to work and the hour back, while packing a much healthier lunch and saving money on both subway fares and lunch, giving myself back the body I had at 25 and a better general outlook and mood and a higher tolerance for my desk job and more money.

Stress Reality I get a repetitive stress injury in my shoulder and start hitting snooze to sleep later and take the subway instead. My weight slowly increases as I continue to buy shitty takeout.
posted by edbles at 11:34 AM on August 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Stress fantasy: I go to grad school and get a great job. They discover I’m an imposter and throw me out. Unable to pay my mortgage and am thrown out of my home. I die alone and am eaten by possums.

Stress reality: I go to grad school and get a great job. They won’t believe me when I tell them I’m an imposter and tell me I’m great. I live in a modest but comfortable home with my loving partner. The possums slink away dejectedly.

I don’t think I’m doing this right.
posted by mimo at 12:06 PM on August 6, 2015 [11 favorites]


These are stressing me out.
posted by pixelsnbits at 12:15 PM on August 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


Fantasye in Tribulacioun: Whan that Aprille comyth and ye sesoun be soffte, I shal go on pilgrimage to Caunterburye right so as I have alway longed for to doon. I shal finde me in a merrye compagnie of folke who wel can drinke, laughe and telle tales that ye tyme may lyghtely passe whiles we riden to that faire citye.

Realitye of Tribulacioun: These companiouns been wel uncouthe. Ye Squier wyl nat cese singinge or floytinge al the daye. Hys fader hath donne grim dedes of warre and doth me affrighte. Al the wommen been nonnes, save oon who doth putte me into mo feare than ye Knighte. A man there ys wyth heyre lyke strawe who wyl gette me into corneres and besechen me to yeve him coin that my sinnes may be pardouned. I spende muchel peyne to putte my tale into verse, yet yt pleseth noone. Iwis we nevere shal be to Caunterburye ycomen.
posted by Pallas Athena at 5:58 PM on August 6, 2015 [26 favorites]


Stress Fantasy: The four month sleep regression!!!1

Stress Reality: Postpartum insomnia
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 3:43 AM on August 7, 2015 [1 favorite]


Stress Fantasy: I finally wake up to myself when the beautiful yet troubled guy I've been crushing on for years winds up in jail, and his excuses turn out to be a load of horse hooey. I outgrow my adolescent rescue fantasies, and settle for a slightly boring but mature relationship with my European colleague who's always had a crush on me and is a great cook.

Stress Reality: My mature relationship goes pear-shaped when the beautiful yet troubled guy gets out of jail on a technicality and starts dating my European colleague, and there is this impossible Yelp reviewer who will not. shut. up. and just keeps coming back under new usernames. The last straw comes when I confront my European colleague about leaving the acrylic nails on the ladyfingers because anyone would think he was ASKING for a bad review, and his sous-chef throws me out the window.
posted by tel3path at 10:00 AM on August 7, 2015


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