Mental Default

I am lazy. Not just body lazy, either. Brain lazy. I’ll use my imagination when I darn well feel like it. Until then, I am picking my mental default and using that. It’s a person? Fine, it’s me. Oh, it’s a black guy? Fine, Bill Cosby. Now it’s a lady. My Helen Hunt. Black lady? Whoopi Goldberg. These are defaults I substitute in my brain so I don’t have to think too hard. It works for other things too. The default animal is a cat. The default object is a shoe. The default food is an ear of corn. The default number is 42. I have one for everything. And since the absolute default for a person is me, I tend to speak, write, and think as though everyone is me. I say ‘he’, not ‘he or she’. I say ‘Yes, sir.’ to women. Not sexism, laziness. I talk about places in my hometown as though the guy from India has been there. I expect everyone in the world to speak English, eat pizza, and grow up in Bayonne, NJ. In my head, I am afloat in a sea of me.

This has caused me no end of trouble in my life. I can’t give directions, because I assume that everyone who needs to drive me somewhere knows where it is. I won’t even mention it when we miss a turn. I will just think to myself, “I wonder why we passed my house. Are we going somewhere else first?” Doubly troublesome is when I have a default person assigned to a name in my head. “Hey, have you seen Nick?” “Nick ‘The Slasher’ McGurk?” “No… Nick Johnson, in accounting.” “Oh, right. Duh.” I also have the habit of assuming that other people are feeling the same way I am. I’ll be watching TV and someone will go make a sandwich and I will be appalled. “Why are they making a sandwich? I’m not hungry.”


About Decoychunk

Editor, Writer, and general Knower-Of-Words, if there is text to be read on BrainLazy, Joseph Lallo probably has his fingerprints on it. As the final third of the ownership and foundation of BrainLazy, Joseph “Jo” Lallo made a name for himself when he lost the “e” from his nickname in an arm wrestling match with a witch doctor. Residing in the arid lowlands of the American Southwest, Joseph Lallo is a small, herbivorous, rabbit-like creature with the horns of an antelope. He sleeps belly up, and his milk can be used for medicinal purposes. Joseph Lallo is also author of several books, including The Book of Deacon Series, book 1 of which is available for free here.