Why I’m Not Killing My Robot
Whenever I’m stressed — and painfully short on time and energy — I write. It’s inefficient; I should sleeping. Or working. Or eating. But instead I do this.
Like right now.
If I was more disciplined, I’d be using this time to build my robot for school — it’s a little freaking machine that (currently) doesn’t do what I want it to do. This robot — NomBot — is supposed to take a penny and put it in it’s mouth, as if it is eating a delicious piece of pork belly. But, instead, it ungraciously falls on the ground and buzzes around like a mechanical fish out of water. I want to euthanize it with wire cutters, execute it with a short circuit, or drown it in melted solder.
Instead, I’m here, writing.
I usually reach this level of frustration and fatigue because I’ve been trying to create something beautiful — and failing. And I’m often failing because I’m using a medium I have yet to master — for example, robot parts and computer languages. It’s kind of like when I play jazz piano; I can hear the beauty in my head, but I can’t translate it to my hands.
So I return to writing, where I can hear the rhythmic cadences of my words and transfer them directly behind this blinking cursor. I return to writing, where I can coax a theme and a tone and a few symbols out of mere words. It’s empowering; it’s therapeutic; it’s a release.
But it’s too easy.
I like to think I became a writer because it’s what I’m best at. But I think I became a writer because it’s the thing I mastered first, which made it enjoyable. And once that happened, I stopped trying to master other mediums; instead, every time I struggled, I came running back to words and phrases and paragraphs. It was a safety net.
I’m trying to let go.
After this final sentence, I’m going to fix my freaking NomBot until it robotically salivates at the at the sight of pennies — and, maybe by the time I’m through with it, it’ll even eat quarters.