Friday, September 3, 2010

Slow-Moving Gal

Deb: I had thought of blogging about this before and was prompted to do so by the Emmys the other night. The woman that won Best Supporting Actress in a drama for The Good Wife is my inspiration for this blog. Her name is Archie Panjabi and she is fabulous-looking and a fabulous actress. But that is not what I most admire about her.

I am not a woman given to jealousy very much. I am happy with who I am. Sure there are prettier women, smarter woman, nicer woman, and certainly taller women. But whatever. I am who I am and I am constantly trying to make the best of it.

Archie has something I have always wanted, but it has eluded me all my life. She is a slow-moving gal. I watch her in The Good Wife and I marvel at her slow-moving ways. She is sooooooooooooo languid. There is not an emergency on earth that could force this woman to move quicker than a snail with her sassy snail steps. She does not even move fast enough for one hair on her head to move. I watch and I marvel.

I am a fast walker, you see. I come from a long line of fast walkers. We are people on the go, people with a purpose. If I wasn’t with the fast walking, I would never ever ever get anything done. In my home I scurry around like Edith Bunker shaving off those seconds while I gather precious time for chores. Crossing a crosswalk? I break into a trot. Walking to a store from the parking lot? I am a filly with the prize in my sights.

So I envy Archie. Not just because her name is Archie––which is so nifty––but because she accomplishes so much without even breaking a sweat. Yes, I know, it’s a television show, but I would lay money on the fact that she is a slow mover in life too. Yet she gets stuff done. Tons of stuff I bet. Important stuff too. She sways and sashays, putting one careful foot in front of the other like she had all the time in the world. She probably has time between steps to say five-syllable words. And I’m sure she does. Because she can. She’s not in a rush. She has time to breathe and look around.

So I am jealous of this slow-moving gal. And not to be outdone by Archie or any other slow movers, I tried it. I would go with the flow, yes I would. Looked like an idiot. And ... I panicked. With each slow step my mind speed-dialed to the next thing on my list. Ahhhhh, I thought, that’s the key. The mind has to match the pace. Hmmmnnn. Yeah. Ain’t gonna happen.

Barbara: I haven’t yet seen Archie Punjabi on screen (yowsa, she's a babe in her pics)––but I want her name, I can tell you that much. Ain’t nobody gonna rush an Archie Punjabi.

Ohhhh, Deb. I am so with you on this one. My husband is always appealing to me, begging me! to slow down. It’s not that he’s particularly slow, he just isn’t on some imaginary marathon where whoever walks the dog fastest gets a gold medal.

But you know who I’m most jealous of? Slow talkers. How refreshing it would be to take my time with words instead of firing them off with the velocity of a depraved Chipmunk.

Deb: Slow talking .... As if.


  1. Great post. I am also a fast walker. I am always so busy so I really have to walk fast to get to where I am going. The only time that I really get to a chance to walk slower is when I am on vacation. That is my only chance to really slow down and look at what is arond me. I think that we should all start to walk a little slower maby because life goes by so quickly and fast. Maby that is what we all need to do

  2. Lyndsie you are so right. I agree but my body just won't listen to me. :)

  3. I am an unrepentant fast talker and fast walker. I have no need or desire to change.

    The only time I ever slowed from being a fast walker was when my son was a little bitty guy and his tiny steps required me to slow down. Seems being a mom trumps everything else.

    I grew up in the Deep South and still live in the South, and people say I talk like a Yankee because I talk so fast. Funny thing is, when I lived in California for a couple of years, everyone commented on how Southern I sound! (The only times I recognize that I have a bit of a Southern accent is when I am extremely tired and really need to get to sleep or when I am furiously, deeply, frighteningly angry. Sleep and/or close to losing my temper will render me a bit Southern.)

    I talk fast for the same reason I type fast. I have to keep up with my thoughts. I have NEVER understood how when you ask a man, "What're you thinking?" he can say, "Nothing." When we were newlyweds, I used to ask my ex-husband about that, "Are you just not wanting to tell me what you're thinking because it's a privacy thing, or are you really thinking nothing?" And, he'd explain, "I'm really not thinking about anything." And, it always boggled me hugely, "How can you be thinking absolutely NOTHING? I am ALWAYS thinking about SOMETHING. It may not be much of a something, maybe something small or mundane, but I am NEVER not thinking SOMETHING. Usually more than one something at a time!" And, he'd just shrug and say that it is possible to be not be thinking about anything at all. Conscious blankness eludes me.

    And, don't even get me started on one of my number one pet peeves in life: people who drive slow in front of me. Do not ever, EVER be in front of me and go below the speed limit (without just cause like rain, the need to reach back to the backseat to tend an upset child, etc.). Someone in front of me just putt-putting along below the speed limit (and lining up a string of cars in the lane behind them) pretty much makes my skull explode until I can pass them. The accelerator pedal, it's the one on the right, USE IT!

    Back to slow walking, if I had a curvy goddess body which could be wielded seductively like a sexual weapon with rolling hips and languid steps, I might experiment with slow walking at times in the presence of worthy male morsels. But, given who I am and the shell in which my soul, sentience, and intellect currently walk around in, any attempt to that effect at this point would be at the least laughable and at the worst nauseating to witness.

  4. Slow and walking? No way. I am always out to catch the train that is pulling out of the station, except I am never late enough to see it pulling away without me. Sometimes, I even find my walking too slow and itch to break out into a run!

    But unlike you, I don't envy the women who move with languid grace- no I don't- honestly.

    But I am a slow talker- I can speed up when I need to, but I've trained myself to speak slowly, because that was the only way to mask the slight stammer I had in my youth.

  5. Rigel, sounds like the fasttalkingfastwalking thing is working for Y'all. (my tribute to your southern self! And yes the only time I ever walked slowly was when my baby was a toddler. Sigh. That baby is 20 years old TODAY!!!!!!!!! Happy Birthday Lucas James Mochrie!

  6. This weblog is being featured on Five Star Friday -

  7. I move quickly too, I'm told, like my dad and his mother. My son Everett moves like molasses; to watch him walk across the yard is to wonder how the hell anyone can move that slowly if they aren't 300 years old.
    My other son walks with elbow crutches and I walk circles around him, wherever we go. It's been a real exercise in patience since he got down from my left hip and started getting places on his own.
    But when it comes to driving, my lead-footed years are over. I used to zip everywhere until I had my first child in the vehicle with me and began to be more careful.
    I have mellowed out enough to enjoy the scenery (I live in the country so there are moose and deer to watch for, there are fields to gaze upon, etc.) rather than rushing toward an early date with death. The posted speed limit is a *maximum speed* not a *required minimum* speed; I don't let impatient drivers browbeat me into driving faster than I feel the need to. I just move over and let them pass, and hope those who ignore the speed *limit* (ever notice how those who pass you at high speeds are often right beside you when you pull up at the traffic light 5 miles ahead? so they didn't get there any faster) don't cause an accident that hurts anyone but themselves. Where is the f'in fire, for g's sake? Though if I'm late for something, I can drive just as stupid as the next guy, and it's not easy to rein myself in either. But I try, try, try.
    Now I'll be watching to see how Archie moves, next time I catch The Good Wife.

  8. Boy Katrinka, you have every manner of movement speed in your house! I am with you on "where's the fire" with fast drivers. This weekend was sunny and clear and we saw several bad accidents resulting from speedy careless driving. But in a big city you are also taking your life in your hands if you go too slow so I do the standard 10 over or the exact limit just to be safe. So enjoy the long weekend at your own leisurely pace.

  9. Thank you schmutzie, for the five-star mention!

    Seriously, you guys should check out her blog -- she is a genius writer.

  10. Tee hee, I'm with you on the 10 over or exact limit Deb, I apply the same rule of thumb to my driving. The amount of traffic jams and accidents resulting from desperate, impatient drivers stuck in said traffic jams because of slower drivers in my city is ridiculous.

    Rigel: I've been told that it is scientifically impossible to be thinking of nothing at all. If that's true, then perhaps whatever your ex was thinking was merely so insignificant and irrelevant that by the time you asked he'd forgotten what it was and figured he hadn't been thinking of anything!


  11. Thanks for the 10 and over support Elle. But I do have an exception to the thinking of nothing at all. I will share it with you guys this week and see if any of you have experienced same.

  12. I have 2 speeds fast and stop. I have never been able to sit still in my life. I pace when I am on the phone, thank god for cordless phones or we would be replacing the flooring. I love to read, but even then my foot will be in constant motion.
    I live in the country but I can not take a leisurely stroll. I have to stop is I want to look around or I zoom right past. I have a hard time not breaking into a run. That reminds me I CAN'T JOG it is too slow.
    Oh and I drive like I walk, but fear of speeding tickets keeps me in line.
    The only thing slow about me is my procrastination...

  13. OK, so the driving speed thing is a titchy point. Gotcha.

    I'd never ask anyone to speed. It just rips the flesh from my bones when I'm behind someone going 30 or 35 in a 45 or 50! That happens frequently on the main road that leads north out of town toward the hospital, the back way to the next town over, and the stateline. This is a road that lots of folks (from this town and neighboring small towns) take to work and school every morning. People who have places to be by a certain time (to answer the "where's the fire?" question above). And, it's a 2 lanes with sometimes a turn lane in the middle not-lacking-for-oncoming-traffic road with not much opportunity to pass someone. And, not too far past the last red light, it turns to highway with well marked increases in speed limit marching upward. It's just plain discourteous to go 10 miles or more below the speed limit on a main road during the prime morning drive time. It creates traffic problems.

    The other one that burns me up on a regular basis is on the state highway between here and the nearest city of reasonable size. You're in the country in the middle of cotton and soybean fields and rice patties. The speed limit is 55. You have a LINE of cars and trucks (10 or more easily at certain times on certain days) trailing behind you, unable to pass, and you are going 40 or 45. *bangs head on desk* WTF?!?! It's a highway. It's a main through highway to a freakin university and to a busy highway that leads to the state capital. I can't count how many times accidents have happened on that stretch of highway that were at least partly brought about by someone going 55 (or, I'll grant you, 60 or 65 -- most people go 60 because the state trooper, sheriff's dept. and town cop speeding tickets only begin at over 5mph over) coming around a curve up onto someone going 40 or 45 or by problems caused when all the cars in that long chain of blocked vehicles began sequentially to try to pass the below-the-speed-limit driver. Yes, speeding on a highway is dangerous. But, so is going too slow.

    I really, really do appreciate the courteous farmers and field hands around here, though. During planting and especially during harvest, it isn't at all uncommon to have tractors, combines, etc. driving down main roads and highways around here. These are hardworking folks just making their living, not dawdling drivers blithely driving in-town speeds on a highway and obliviously inconveniencing a line of vehicles behind them. The guys driving the farm equipment without fail scoot to the side and put their tractors mostly onto the shoulder as soon as they safely can and let the vehicles behind them pass. They even help watch for oncoming traffic and help to wave people by or hold up a warning hand to hold them back to safety. They are very good about having all of their caution lights blinking and reflective signs in place. They try to not move their equipment on the roads at busy times like after school pick-up. Plus, when passing the tractor, there's usually the nice bonus prize of getting a wave or a hat tip from the gentleman driving it. ;)

    All ranting about speed limits aside, the absolutely most infuriating thing to me a driver can do is not pulling over and making way for emergency vehicles running with lights and sirens. Seeing someone inhibiting an ambulance or a fire engine makes my blood boil!

  14. Rigel-Good Rant! Love a good rant. I have wanted to do a really intense drivers blog since we started but I didn't know how to keep it below novel status. I think you just said it for me. The only one that did not resonate with my personal experience was the emergency vehicles. I agree with you that it is despicable but I have never seen anyone do that. Well done rant! There's Just life, I related to the pacing on the phone. I pace all over the house, upstairs and down and even outside. The funny thing is, now my husband does it and so does our son. Cannot sit when on phone. Schmutzie thanks for the 5 star mention if for no other reason than bringing me to your excellent moving funny smart blog. You're a pip.

  15. I crave slow, languid, measured. I like to think I have it in me, but it always comes just after and then after this. Oh and this first.....

  16. People who self-righteously justify speeding are ... everywhere. You know who you are; and occasionally I am one. I should have had quite a few speeding tickets by now, yet somehow haven't. I just hope you (and I) never cause an accident, particularly where someone is killed or maimed. Because frankly, getting to the church on time isn't as important as anyone's life. Ask anyone who's been the cause of a life-changing crash, and they will tell you they wish they'd had the sense to leave home a few minutes earlier instead of applying that extra pressure to the gas pedal.
    It's not the people driving 10 mph slower than the speed limit who cause the accidents; it's the people who feel entitled to drive 10 mph faster than the speed limit.

  17. AND the ones who don't know they are supposed to slow down if weather conditions don't justify the maximum speed! It's raining? Slow down! It's blowing snow? Slow down!
    I am constantly shocked at how stupid some drivers are, as if they think they are safely immune from mishaps in their half a ton of metal and glass hurtling down the road.
    Indeed this is a rantable subject, ladies. But I think I've said more than enough.

  18. Katrinka, it seems that maybe you have had personal experience with a speeding driver that did not end well. If that is the case I am truly sorry. I did not mean to sound glib when I said that I drive 10 over. I am not by nature a speeder at all. Have never in my 40 years of driving had a speeding ticket but in the city it is standard to drive on main roads (not residential) although people do, a five to ten over. I will think of your words next time.

  19. People going below the speed limit can and do cause accidents. It is an acknowledged hazard so much so that it is ILLEGAL in most US states (I don't know about Canadian provinces). It is illegal to go below the speed limit to the point of inhibiting the vehicles around you. Most states call it some variation on the phrase "impeding traffic flow." For example, in the legal code here in Arkansas, it is 27-51-208(b):

    "No person shall drive a motor vehicle at a such a slow speed as to impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic."

    Of course, how slow that may be will vary with time, location, and situation. What's OK for a scenic drive on a Sunday afternoon will be different from what's OK on a main road at 7:30 on a weekday morning.

    This law addresses my rant above regarding the behavior of below-the-speed-limit drivers on the main northward road out of town and the highway leading to the nearest city. If you are going below the speed limit and cars are backed up waiting to get around you, you are impeding traffic flow and breaking the law just like someone who is speeding is breaking the law.

    This has nothing to do with speeding, aggressiveness, impatience, or being in a hurry because of running late or whatever. I used to be an EMT years ago. I used to run rescue and pull shifts in a ER/trauma bay. I've seen graphically what can happen, and in my 2nd comment, I began my remarks by stating, "I'd never ask anyone to speed." And, certainly (as I mentioned in my first comment above), slow down for weather. Slowing down for weather is the law, too. My pet peeve is NOT people who are going the speed limit. My pet peeve is people who are driving below the speed limit and causing problems for the other people on the road --- which is also unsafe and illegal.

    1. 1/05/2012:
      Here, it's called the "Linda Powers" rule. (Sorry I just ratted you out, ma.)

      PS Barb, click on my name. I wrote something new today and I'd like an honest opinion about flow, staying on topic, etc. I'm hoping for a laugh, but if I don't get one, I want to know where to change that, too. xxoo

  20. lol, I love this post. Sometimes I am talking so fast, I do a caffeine check: have I had a cup of coffee in the last hour that I forgot about??? When I realize yes, I am relieved and blame that, when I realize no, I think, Gae shut up for god's sake and just listen. Ah slow talking.

    You know what else I am working on? Slow chewing. And multiple chewing. And, um, not starting to shove the next forkful into my mouth just because it tastes good when I am not yet done chewing the last.

    Maybe we need to make a whole slow list. Have a race to see who can accomplish them first???!!!?! Er. ;)


  21. lol back, Gae!! So funny.

    And a big fat yes on the slow-chewing . Have I come from a deprived background where food was not available and so must be hoovered? Although, I will say I'm a master-enjoyer of all things food-related despite my speedy-eating.

  22. Gae LOL I am a slow eater because I like to take my time and enjoy it. However my husband says it is because I am talking. I have rarely met a faster eater than my husband despite my warnings. I finally gave up on that one. Lisa, so true...made me laugh. I will be slow right after I do 500 things.

  23. No need to say sorry to me, Deb -- believe me, my natural inclination was to speed. I have been there and completely understand the urge. I've sortof trained myself out of it; and still sometimes have to remind myself to keep an eye on the speedometer and slow the F down.
    A couple years ago Scott and I and the boys made our way from Calgary to Kelowna on Xmas Eve when the road through the mountains was slippery, snowy, treacherous. Many vehicles sped past us though ... and then we passed them: their vehicles in the "ditch" (on mountain roads that's not a ditch you can drive out of, like you can here in Saskscratchyerass) and in one of them, the occupants who had blithely passed us not long before were still in their vehicle -- their bodies and faces covered by blankets.
    Mountain roads in winter are scary at the best of times, but in inclement weather ... I think people must believe nothing can happen to *them* or ... I just don't know ... I don't want to say that a lot of drivers are actually *stupid* but ... they certainly do lack commensensical caution.

  24. Hey, Fast Walking Deb -

    Clips about Japanese Precision Walking are floating around on neatorama and the boingboing submiterator this weekend. I thought of this blog post!

    Definitely wait for the supercool ending.

    Maybe you could choreograph your telephone pacing family? LOLOL *hugs*

    Love and hugs,

  25. Barbara, There's an Award for you on my blog.

  26. Just found this, kind of suits this conversation:

    Carl Honore praises slowness:


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.