Wednesday, September 1, 2010


I am completely obsessed with lists. I love lists. I love making them, reading them, counting items on them, crossing things off them, putting little check marks against them. I know this makes me a hopeless dork. Every essay I write comes after an inner battle not to write in entirely list form. It's not my fault I think in bullet points, after all. Nobody believes me when I say that, but it's true. I think in headings, subheadings and bullet points under the subheadings. Putting things eloquently isn't a talent of mine, but at least putting things neatly is. Today, I decided to give up the battle. I've proven my resilence, I've shown the world I can try and be all creative and flowery paragraphy with 21 normal essays. It's time to break out the lists. Here is my Great List of Why I Love Lists.

1) You never forget what to buy at the grocery store. There's never any "oh shit I went to the supermarket and I didn't pick up shampoo". There is only the satisfaction of making a comprehensive shopping list and checking things off it. Not only does it save time, it also helps prevent the "I went to Target to buy scotch tape and came home with a throw rug" conversation which is so apt to come up at least several times in your college career.

2) It makes writing papers (or essays) ten times easier when you have a mental list of what to say. In the case of academic papers, it also makes it much easier to pad your work with bullshit, because it's evenly distributed across the list of relevant stuff. I've noticed non list-makers tend to write very pretty papers, but their bullshit distribution can be a little off-all the nonsense tends to be concentrated towards the end, when there is a struggle to meet the word count.

3) You can start your daily to-do list with things you already did, or that you know will get done anyway (breakfast? Print homework?) just because it makes you feel awesome when you cross them off. In other words, there's nothing like a (fake) list to start your day off right.

4) It's easy to keep track of pretty much everything in your life. I have made lists of places I want to see before I die, things I need to do this week, books I will never read (*cough* Twilight *cough), 90s trends that need to come back and ways I would change my face if I was a Metamorphmagus. In case I or anyone else ever need to refer to these things, I've got it covered. Think of me as your grandfather's gigantic filing cabinet with all sorts of useless crap in there, but very well-organised crap.

5) It makes you feel productive. I have to admit that there were days when I went to the library, thought very hard and produced a brilliant list of everything I need to study. I don't mean jotting down all my homework, I mean a truly epic list, with suggestions and charts and all sorts of embellishments. By the time I'm done with this list, I feel like I deserve a break. Who doesn't like that glow you get when you know you absolutely deserve the nap you are taking?

6) Lists can go on forever. I can occupy myself endlessly making lists of just about anything. There's no getting bored when you have a list-maker in your head. There's also no running out of writing material. If you ever get tired of constructing paragraphs but still have a point to make, a list just might save your day.