I don’t know what’s going on with me lately, but I cannot stop thinking about death.
Hello! Welcome to this week’s Listful Thinking!
I’ve always been a little morbid, but recently it’s been, like, whoa. Maybe it was my recent existential meltdown. Maybe it’s part of being in my 20s and having simultaneous and horrible realizations that a) I’m not quite as invincible as my teenage self thought and b) the future is careening towards me and it might be totally terrible and sad and there’s nothing I can do about it. Maybe it’s because I’m a pessimist and therefore predisposed to look around me when everything is great, take it all in, sigh, and say, “Too bad death is coming for us all.”
Before anyone breaks into my house and takes all the sharp objects away, I would like to make two things clear.
1. Breaking and entering is illegal.
2. All this thinking about death is not the same as wishing for death. In fact, it’s exactly the opposite. I think death is my worst enemy. I want to punch death in the face. As long as I don’t have to get too close to it. Screw you, death! My new game plan is to live forever and ever and ever.
And that’s why, as of this week, I’ve started drinking a gallon of water every day. (Boy. That was hands down the weirdest intro/actual blog topic segue I’ve ever written, and that includes last month’s time travel intro.) According to the internet (and also doctors, but who needs those guys when you have the internet?), death and the aliens from Signs have a lot more in common than a preoccupation with Joaquin Phoenix’s family. They’re also both very afraid of water.
The Supposed Benefits of Water
1. Drinking water is good for your brain! This article says it makes your brain cells more efficient and helps you focus. You know what happens when your brain dies? YOU DIE.
2. Drinking water is good for your waistline! WebMD says it fills you up and makes you less hungry. You know what happens when all that junk food makes your arteries clog? YOU DIE.
3. Drinking water is good for your skin! WebMD also claims that water can make you look less wrinkly. You know what wrinkles are? PARTS OF YOUR FACE TRYING TO HIDE FROM DEATH.
4. Drinking water makes you feel like a mermaid! I know I read this somewhere. I’m pretty sure I also read that mermaids are immortal, probably.
With all that in mind, I decided that water was my best weapon in the fight against death. Actually, if we’re being honest, Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak is the best weapon against death, but as I’m still waiting on my Hogwarts acceptance letter, water will have to do.
I’m not sure why I chose to drink a gallon when I started this, except that I knew that I needed to drink almost that much and figured a little extra couldn’t hurt. I should have known better, though. As with any powerful weapon, water needs to be wielded carefully.
Water: It Can Be Treacherous
1. There is such a thing as water poisoning. It does not sound fun.
2. Did you read about that brain-eating amoeba that killed a couple people who were using neti pots to clean out their sinuses? I sure did. Two lessons here: avoid brain-eating amoebas and maybe drink your water instead of pouring it up your nose and into your face.
3. Drowning is bad.
4. Peeing your pants in public is slightly less bad, but you could still die of embarrassment.
I included that last one because in the last three days I have made 793 trips to the bathroom and about 293 of those trips were close calls. Too close for comfort.
So far the only problem I’ve run into (besides the very real possibility that I will wet myself mid-meeting) is forgetting to drink throughout the day. To avoid a panicked chugging session right before bedtime and a lot of subsequent early morning trips to the bathroom, I had to set up an alarm to periodically remind me to finish my water bottle. Of course, this usually ends in a slightly shorter panicked chugging session every three hours. I’m not great at remembering things. In fact, I just remembered that I was supposed to take a vitamin… three weeks ago.
The Observable Benefits of Water
1. Drinking water is good for your wallet and mild addictions! I haven’t wanted or needed any caffeine since I started this watery experiment. You’re welcome, coffee budget!
2. Drinking water is not good for your hypoglycemia! I’m not hungry anymore, but that doesn’t mean I’m any less hangry. In fact, my mood swings are sneakier than ever because I have no way to predict them.
3. Drinking water stops your nightmares! Well. Maybe only if you were dreaming about Mummy Cat, like I was. I live in a desert. I’ve seen what this place can do to you, but thanks to all this water, I’m not worried any more. When they find me under a shed, I’m going to be nice and hydrated. Spongy, even.
4. Drinking water sort of helps you stop thinking about your own mortality and that of everyone you love! It’s hard to hear death’s swift and silent wings coming over the glug-glug-glug noises you’re making as you drink.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to pee for the fifth time in an hour.