Why is busy the new black?

{Hypocrite warning: a post in which I bitch and moan and judge certain types of behaviour that I am frequently guilty of.}

*Alternative titles:

“Is busy the new normal?”

“Fuck the glorification of busy”.

I’m sure you already know where I’m going with this don’t you?


But seriously, if one more person answers the question “how are you” by telling me how busy they are I’m going to…

…probably nod and say “I know what you mean.”

*facepalms herself*


EVERYONE is busy. Even toddlers are busy being dragged to kindy-fucking-gym-things and play dates and what not. So it’s safe to assume that if you are an adult human who has to think about things like food in their belly and a roof over their head, and if you have one or two friends and/or family members you like to actually see, you are busy.


BEING A STAY AT HOME PARENT IS NOT AKIN TO LIVING A LIFE OF LEISURE. If I had a dollar for every time someone has said to me that since selling the cafe I must be enjoying putting my feet up I’d be fucking rich. Still desperate to punch them in the face, but at least I’d be rich. Ugh, I just can’t even go any deeper into this one without losing my shit. Suffice to say that I can only wish I had the life of leisure they seem to think I do.


Since we’ve established that being busy is just the way the world spins these days and that EVERYONE IS BUSY you should then understand that being busy does not make you special or important. DO NOT moan to me about how your position as general workplace shitkicker has you racking up all kinds of crazy hours which you secretly love moaning about because you think it makes you sound important. It doesn’t.


Busy isn’t synonymous with cool. It’s not: refer to facts one and three. I actually think it’s a sad reflection of how obsessed we are as a society with all the things that don’t matter, because sometimes it just seems like being busy is the frenetic pace at which we acquire more of the stuff we don’t always need in order to live the “perfect” lives that advertisers tell us will make us happy and normal.


WE DO THIS TO OURSELVES. We’re pretty stupid sometimes when you think about it, because those times when we can choose to say no to something that we don’t have time for or want to do, we usually end up saying yes. So whether it’s another after-school activity for the kid that already has you driving around town every other day for one thing or another, or the social thing that you don’t even want to go to because you don’t even really like that person that much, most of the time we are more worried about how we are going to look or sound if we politely refuse to add one more thing to our calendar.


We need to find a new way of answering the questions, “so how have you been?” and “what have you been up to?”. Instead of saying the B word maybe we could just say something like, “oh you know, just the usual” or “nothing special” {or even the opposite: “lots of cool stuff”}, or my personal favourite, “fuck all” {so what if it’s not true}.


There’s no going back. The days of having mostly blank calendars with nothing more than birthdays and the odd appointment in them are over. I even ask my kids, at least the ones under 18, to put their stuff in my calendar too so that I know when I might be needed for pick-up and drop-off duty {plus just generally knowing where they actually are}, and one glance at all the birthday invites on the fridges of everyone I know would suggest that younger kids have even more demanding social lives than their parents do. And there’s just no way around it.


It’s about to get worse.

But in a good way. Because with November almost done we’re about to hit the silly season, but it’s the kind of busy I like: catching up with friends and family and doing nothing more strenuous than eating and drinking.

And lazing around moaning about how much we’ve had to eat and drink.

And then eating and drinking some more.

And lazing around some more.


Big fat cheers to that.


  1. SO MUCH YES FOR THIS! I stopped carrying on about how busy I am when I realised that EVERYONE is busy regardless of what job they have, family commitments etc. I also got sick of friends telling me how busy they were like it was a badge of honour to be burning the candle at both ends – cool story bro!
    This time of year is the worst too – why do we HAVE to catch up before Xmas? Can’t we just find sometime in the new year? We won’t all combust if we don’t catch up one last time before 2017!!


    1. Omg yes the whole we have to catch up for Xmas or its the end of the world! There are people who will kill themselves trying to be in ten places at once.

      And unfortunately a lot of people do wear busy like a badge of honour don’t they?

      But I’ve discovered that when you downplay and don’t say how busy you are people actually believe it and tell you how lucky you are!


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