Thursday, December 13, 2007

Sources and Sinks

There are two kinds of people in the world: Sources and Sinks.

Earlier this week, I was sitting in the Southern basement hallway of the JFSB waiting for my Spanish class to begin. As I sat and studied, I also listened to a conversation between two girls (whom I'll call Alice and Betty) who were waiting for their sewing class. Betty, a shortish brunette wearing some sort of red (if I rightly remember), was busy sewing something while Alice, a more buoyant, taller, depressed-looking girl was sitting next to her project.

I first perked up to eavesdrop because of how sad Alice seemed to be. Every word seemed to sap strength from her sadly sorry soul. More than that, however, her gloom felt almost intentional -- like she enjoyed it.

Eventually their conversation turned to dating, as conversations at BYU tend to do. It turns out that Betty has been dating a boy for just over a year... they talked about how some people only date for a short time before marrying, while others take a while. I'm not sure of my opinion on the matter... I could see myself dipping into either bucket when the time comes.

Alice thought their story of meeting (in a class they shared) was cute -- the same way a dreary rain cloud thinks the cumulous are cute. Then she started talking about some of her friends and how they had met their respective spice. After every story, she sighed a miserable sigh and gave a wan, faraway look -- which I could only interpret as yearning for a "story" of her own.

The topic drifted to work:

"So what do you want to do?" asked Betty. (Throughout this conversation, I noticed a change in Betty. At first, she was just cordially answering Alice's questions. But then she began to see that this person needed a little more than an unhearing ear. She started to be interested in her -- kudos to you, Betty)

"I kinda don't want a job," said Alice somberly. "I hate working."

At this point, I inwardly exclaimed, "Good heavens, girl! I feel like I'm having a bad day now." Soon after, the rooms emptied their people into the hall and we all went to our classes.

There are two kinds of people in the world: Sources and Sinks; Fountains and Drains; Happys and Sads; Optimists and Pessimists. The Sinks sap energy from every situation... spreading gloom and despair in their wake. And soon, the Sinks have created the miserable hollow they imagined their life was, which brings down the dark rain even more. Sources have the opposite effect: There's not many situations in which you can't laugh at yourself or your folly. And they live the line: "There's no situation bad enough that complaining about it won't make it worse." It's fun to have Sources around you. Life seems better when they're around.

Probably we alternate between being Sources and Sinks... some days/events are just rough. But I think we can choose more often than we do to be a Source rather than a Sink. No body likes Sinks... they smell bad and house dirty dishes.

Be a Source.

4 comments:

Dan Kim said...

Maybe I can be a sink clogger... That will solve problems right?

Miri said...

1. i like your 50's housewife names for the characters in your story.
2. did you use "spice" as plural for "spouse"????? because if so... 500 points. like, whoa.

Kira Joy said...

If there were no sinks, then where would the the flow from the sources go? It would pour over, then there would be massive flooding, and pandamodium.

The sources have never had enough respect for the sinks, we, I mean they do a lot for the sources. While they are squirting all sorts of junk off of dishes and hands into our, I mean their faces, we just take it in, grind it up, and dispose of it. It's not easy, and sometimes it hurts, but we still wake up every morning, we still go out and face the world. We still clean up all the crud that gets washed into our faces.

It's pride. Whatever you do, you gotta have that pride.

Megs said...

I was definitely going to comment on the plural form of spouse as well, but it appears my dear roommate has beaten me to the punch. I'm glad I read this - I do believe I was a bit of a sink in November, but I'm working my way back up to source status at the mo.
Happy finals.