Buffer Days + temperate climates + Oreos
May I recommend
We’re all grownups here, so I am assuming we are all on the same page, but on the off chance that one of you missed this in the How To Adult Like A Pro course, may I introduce you to the concept of the Buffer Day.
When you go on vacation and leave your house (the two don’t necessarily follow in these Pandemmy times) when feasible you must, yes MUST, add an extra day to your vacation to use as a buffer day. “But, Amy,” you wail, ala Cathy - “I only have two weeks holiday, I can’t waste a precious day!” To that I say (and I know this is incredibly privileged) but I say, look for another job. A measly two weeks is barbaric. Most professional positions offer three weeks as standard. There is a massive labour shortage - look for a better job where they are not so parsimonious with their holidays. If they are dickering around with your three weeks holiday, they are also probably not a good employer. You deserve better. Okay. Good.
Now, here is why you are not “wasting” a day off by taking a buffer day. Firstly, and most importantly, no matter where you have been - I don’t care if it’s a week at your in-laws, the beaches of Bali or an olive grove in Northern Italy — your buffer day will always be the LITERAL best day of your whole holiday.
Because it is a glorious, unplanned free day where you don’t have to pretend to be interested in a Romanesque churches, eat weird food that MIGHT be delicious, but might also give you the collywobbles or talk to people instead of watching old New Girl episodes on Netflix.
In an ideal world, your spouse doesn’t know about the buffer day and leaves the house to work, allowing you to have the whole place to yourself. If you are so blessed as to have children, they should under no circumstances be given a buffer day. You are not wasting your precious buffer by making some dillweed a grilled cheese sandwich. The children are young and they can go to school and walk around bleary eyed and discombobulated as God intended.
This day is a glorious gift of the gods. You are not travelling any more. You got home last night. You do not then have to wake up and drag your sorry carcass to work (even if work is just opening your work laptop from your couch). No, you get to enjoy a frittery day off, where you are NOT navigating highways, airports, unpacking, or polite small talk. There is no schlepping today. None.
Now, what do you DO on a buffer day? Well, that is of course the central joy of the BD - the world is your oyster. The obvious thing is to do the laundry from the trip. This isn’t like regular laundry, however — this is languid, slow laundry that might take you the whole day to do. Why is laundry so much better on a buffer day? It’s simple, because 1. you’re in your own house again, and not sleeping in someone’s weird guest room, a cramped hotel or an odd smelling AirBNB. You’re home! You are reunited with your own delicious bed, your preferred clock radio, there is melba toast available whenever you have a hankering and tea and milk and all the things you need at hand. 2. You should be working, and there’s no reason that you aren’t except for the joy of the Buffer.
Other things you can do during your buffer day are to stay in your pajamas all day, watch Netflix, finally sort out the contents of the junk drawer, make a big elaborate dinner with all of the glorious tools in your very own kitchen or just catch up on any missed naps.
You can do all those frittering, unimportant things because you are reacquainting yourself with your beloved house, and your beloved stuff and you’re not away any more but you’re home and it’s so nice and enjoyable and you are able to just relish it. Luxuriate in it. You’re in your own bathroom again!
Tell me about your favourite BD in the comments below!
There’s no point moving to a warm climate - you’ll still be cranky
Do I sound a bit defensive as we slog through a north eastern November - typically grey, cold, rainy and leafless? Maybe a titch, but I do love seasons and I don’t mind winter — so I am on board for this article’s thesis.
If moving somewhere warm produces such marginal and temporary gains, why is it so tempting? It turns out that people tend to think that weather matters more for their happiness than it actually does. In a now-classic study from the 1990s, the Nobel-laureate psychologist Daniel Kahneman and his co-author, David Schkade, asked midwesterners and Californians to rate their own life satisfaction as well as the happiness of people living in the other region. The self-ratings were the same, but both groups thought that Californians were happier than midwesterners, specifically because of the climate.
The neuroscience behind our inner voices
This is an interesting one - what do our inner voices look/sound like and why is everyone’s unique?
Claudia*, a sailor from Lichfield in her late 30s, is not Italian. She has never been to Italy. She has no Italian family or friends. And she has no idea why a belligerent Italian couple have taken over her inner voice, duking it out in Claudia’s brain while she sits back and listens.
“I have no idea where this has come from,” says Claudia, apologetically. “It’s probably offensive to Italians.” The couple are like the family in the Dolmio pasta sauce adverts: flamboyant, portly, prone to waving their hands and shouting. If Claudia has a big decision to make in her life, the Italians take over.
The surprisingly cutthroat history of Oreos
I love me an Oreo and this Instagram history is fascinating.
Gossipy dirt about (mostly) old white men
I love some good Hollywood gossip and this guy is pulling no punches.
In his book, Cox recounts turning down the role of the Governor in Pirates of the Caribbean (a part taken by Jonathan Pryce, but more on him later). He doesn’t regret missing out on the Johnny Depp helmed series…
“Personable though I’m sure he is, is so overblown, so overrated. I mean, Edward Scissorhands. Let’s face it, if you come on with hands like that and pale, scarred-face make-up, you don’t have to do anything. And he didn’t. And subsequently, he’s done even less.”
This kid’s skiing and enunciation are both on point
Did not know this
An extra large puppicino
Putain, je t’en merde!
I had the time of my life
Love this lady, her lips, her accent, her little sip and her wisdom
Set my soul on fire
The perfect texture
The boobs, the butt, the vagina
Sergeant John American Flag is the only hope we have left
I like ending these with a konk
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Amy Tector, The Honeybee Emeralds (March 2022)