[kwoh-tid-ee-uh n]


  1. daily.
  2. usual or customary; everyday.
  3. ordinary; commonplace.

I think quotidian Netflix has the power to ruin your life. Perhaps not drastically, but harm nonetheless. That’s a lot of power for a website. But I tell you what, I was about 65% happier before I had access to thousands of shows at the click of a button. Sometimes I don’t even have to click a button, auto-play takes over and four hours later, I’ve accomplished nothing with my day. I haven’t hiked, I haven’t written a single word on a single page, I haven’t met anyone new at the coffee shop because I’m sitting on my bum watching other people live fictional lives.

So I’ve been making more of an effort to stay away from the daily TV routine. Since turning 31, I’m now referred to as New Beth by some of my friends. Old Beth went home after work and had a cup of tea. New Beth goes out for a drink and ends up staying for three. New Beth approaches the cute hockey player because she wants to talk to the cute hockey player. She knows that to write a good book, she has to live a good story. “And then I went home and watched Netflix” is a lame story.

So the past week has been full of waterfalls and hiking and foosball tournaments and a little bit o’ vodka. I’m living like I did when I first moved here. Every day was a mystery. Who will I meet? What will happen? What view will I find when I summit this mountain? What inspiration will hit and how many words will be on the page at the end of the night? I used to have tears in my eyes on a daily basis because I was in such awe. Netflix has tried to take this away from me. Am I being dramatic? Maybe so.

After an exciting day of adventure and Chinese food with a new friend, we opened the computer for the best possible reason: to watch You’ve Got Mail. My girl Kathleen Kelly said it well, “Sometimes I wonder about my life. I lead a small life – well, valuable, but small – and sometimes I wonder, do I do it because I like it, or because I haven’t been brave? So much of what I see reminds me of something I read in a book, when shouldn’t it be the other way around? I don’t really want an answer. I just want to send this cosmic question out into the void. So good night, dear void.”

People have called me brave after hearing I moved to a place where I didn’t know anyone. It didn’t feel brave to me, really. I wasn’t scared; I know there are kind people in the world and that I’d find some in Idaho and I’d be fine. And I like a good challenge. And I had a book to write. But living a life of whismy, living a life fueled by passion and intrigue, a life full of talking to strangers and going out of your comfort zone and getting off the couch, a life not lived flat on a page or a screen, that’s brave, and it makes helluva story.

Of course, balance is important and I still drink my fair share of tea next to Pal.

This morning as I sat in the bookstore and felt a bit like Kathleen Kelly, I smiled because this past week has been full of book-worthy kind of stuff, including an invitation to a ball, a hand-written note taped to my door, and a good looking dog making connections for me left and right. It all feels like a reward for trying to say no to quotidian Netflix. I cannot wait for you to read it.

Good night, dear void.

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