I just love animals. That, of course, is obvious, and the reasons are infinite. Sure, they are cute and fluffy, they have big eyeballs and even bigger ears and whiskers all in the right places. They love you unconditionally and do silly things like chase their tails and poop in the litter box as soon as you clean it.
There is their compassion, their ability to show empathy even when they are being mistreated, and their capacity to love. Animals have much bigger hearts than humans do.
And one thing I realized today, they just don't give a fuck about anything that is not worth giving a fuck about.
In the last few weeks I have worked hard to adopt a philosophy of not caring about stuff that doesn't matter and only drains the energy from me. This includes people who have treated me badly, ex-boyfriends, strangers that give me the finger for going at a stop sign when it's my turn, bad tempers at work, bad attitudes at Walmart, the police officer who pulled me over for having my sticker in the wrong corner of my license plate (boy, if anyone ever needed to adopt the magical thinking of not giving a fuck about worthless shit, it's him), and people who get mad at me for saying that Luke Skywalker is my favorite Star Wars character. Up high on my list of things not worth caring about is the Super Bowl. I realize that is blasphemy, especially for people around here. The Broncos played. It's practically a religion to root for the Broncos.
Apparently they won.
Apparently they won.
I couldn't care less.
I totally own that and for anyone who wants to judge me for it, I don't really give a rat's ass about that either. Judge me all you want. I enjoyed my afternoon walk with my dog Sunday just the same and the Super Bowl did not even manage a blip on my radar. In fact, I rather like Super Bowl Sunday because it keeps the fanatics indoors, glued to the television, while I once again have the streets to myself to let Tess run loose.
If I could tack the kind of apathy I feel for the Super Bowl to other things that have drained my energy over the past year I would be in business. I've managed to move in the right direction. I've definitely let go of a lot of crap that just doesn't need to be taking up any more mental space. Little by little it is changing my life. I feel better. I'm happier. I do Pilates. But I still have a long way to go.
It turns out my dog is inspiration for such thinking. Watching Tess, I realized just how much she does not give a fuck about anything that doesn't matter. Pee on a rock? Give a fuck! The assface that broke my heart and dropped me for a woman whose laugh resembles the yelping of a hyena? No fucks given at all! Sniff a tree trunk? Totally give a fuck! I got rejected from those jobs I interviewed for? Who gives a fuck? To Tess, it's a nonissue. She only cares what rock to pee on, what bush to sniff, whether her food bowl is full, and are we currently, at this moment, on a walk because that is like the best thing in the world and her excitement level each and every time never ceases to amaze me. Who cares about Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani when Tess gets to poop in the snow?
And of course she gives a fuck about me. Just as I care about her. Truth be told, I care more about my dog than most people. If someone wants to be a jerk and act like a dildo, I will happily go and spend the day with my dog. She's much better company.
On Friday I played with seven German shepherd puppies at the library. The lady who certifies service dogs raises shepherds and one of her dogs just had a litter. Dogs are born with this ability to just not care. They were seven Mini Me's of Tess. They behaved just like her only on a smaller scale. Seven puppies scampered around playing with the children that came for the program, chewed on the puppy toys littering the floor, and one even wandered onto the carpet of the room and relieved himself right then and there. If a child held a puppy too long on his or her lap, the puppy squirmed and wiggled his way off the lap and pounced after a toy, completely oblivious about anything else. Calling to them was waste of time. If they didn't want to come because they were too busy playing with a toy, you might as well have been in Siberia for all they cared. One puppy latched onto my sweater and started a game of tug of war. Three more puppies saw this and thought "Hey, what a great idea!" and joined in. Luckily I managed to disengage all of them before they ruined my sweater, but had they managed to tear it, they wouldn't have cared. They just don't know any better. And what's more, they don't care.
Cats are the be all end all when it comes to not giving a fuck. To them, if they have to give a fuck about anything, they immediately stop being cats and become something needy and pathetic which cats just do not aspire to be. What's more cats are capable of not giving a fuck, being rude about it, and still not coming across as assholes. For more on not giving a fuck while not being an asshole about it see The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck: How to Stop Spending Time You Don't Have with People You Don't Like Doing Things You Don't Want to Do by Sarah Knight. As for cats, even if they did come across as assholes, they still wouldn't care. Puckett is rather the queen of this, though Percy and Willow are getting quite good at it too. This is why Percy takes a smelly, nasty dump in his litter box right in the middle of me eating my lunch. This is why Puckett will terrorize and herd the dog around the kitchen, even after she has been reprimanded multiple times for doing so. This is why Willow pees on the floor when she can't be bothered to use the litter box. They just don't give a damn. If it seems like a good idea at the time, they will do it. Reprimands be damned. And when reprimanded the looks they shoot me let me know just how little they care about my opinion on just about anything. They are going to do whatever they want and I'd better recognize.
Unless they want food, a scratch, or a clean litter box. Then you better believe they care.
Here's a list of things not to give a fuck about as demonstrated by our animal friends:
- The Kardashians
- Donald Trump (and his toupee...and his big mouth)
- Celebrity breakups
- Reality TV in general
- People with negative attitudes
- Rude motorists
- Who unfriended you on Facebook
- The people YOU unfriend on Facebook
- Internet trolls (and their bottomless well of nasty comments)
- That party you weren't invited to
- The gossip about you behind your back
- The gossip about you to your face
- People's opinions about you in general (you can't change them anyway, so who the hell cares what they think?)
Here's a list of things you should most certainly give a fuck about
- Your pets (and animals in general)
- Family (this includes children if you have them, your ailing elderly grandparents, and your spinster Aunt Ida - though certain behaviors, opinions, and actions I give you leave to not give a fuck about. Just be polite about it.)
- Good, true, loyal friends
- Your job (though certain aspects you might not care about)
- Food (especially chocolate)
Everything else is up to you to categorize as you see fit. Things I give a fuck about may not be the same things you give a fuck about (the Super Bowl for instance and whether Luke Skywalker really is hotter than Han Solo). But then again, who cares what I think? And just so we are clear, Tess doesn't care either. Neither do Puckett, Percy and Willow, and your pets, should you have any.
Let's all take a page from Tess' book and stop caring about useless things that we can't change. All it does is clutter the mind and suck precious energy from the things we do enjoy. Tess is always so happy on her walks because she truly enjoys that and she's not sitting around mooning over the fact that some doofus might not like her. This is a much more appealing way to spend time.