Spontaneity – By @EdzaiSoper
I have been thinking a fair bit about the word spontaneity lately, along with its adjective[d] cousin spontaneous.
Defined by the guys at cambridgedictionary.co.uk as:
“A way of behaving in which you do what feels natural and good whenever you want to, rather than planning things first.”
It is a character trait that many in my generation consider high praise. A quick swipe through any dating app and everyone and their mums are claiming to be the most spontaneous thing this side of the Mississippi. This assertion is normally followed up with the predictable admission of loving pizza and dogs. (Mental note: the originality here is lethal, definitely swipe right.) I have done the maths and if all these people are being honest, on your average walk through London you should expect to see at least three cliff dives, seven people running through sprinklers and an unholy amount of hitchhikers holding up signs saying “take me anywhere”. So where are they all?
One possible answer is on a date with me. I have procured a few last minute dates through casually asking the lucky lady out for a drink, followed by the line “…in the spirit of spontaneity tehe.” I know, smooth. Whether it was this quick witted piece of dialect (or pure sympathy) that was the deciding factor on them accepting my offer only they and their gods know. More importantly this got me thinking: what could you get people to do when you ever so slightly challenge their spontaneity? How far would your average millennial go to prove they have a wild side? Perhaps some sort of game show or reality tv series could be based around this concept. Still early days but I think there may be legs here. Something for the guys at BT Sport to consider perhaps.
Another possible answer is that everyone is lying about being spontaneous, and possibly for good reason. Here are a few spontaneous things I’ve done recently:
1.) Booked an all inclusive trip to Croatia four hours before the 7am flight only to get to the airport to find I had forgotten to pack my passport
2.) Added some marmite to a tomato soup I was cooking in search of the elusive umami flavour, didn’t work out
3.) Stopped on the side of a motorway during heavy traffic to pee in a bottle in my car as I thought it was a better option than doing it out in the open, again not the best idea
So maybe spontaneity isn’t the answer to your problems. Maybe next time you should not act in a way that feels natural but instead have a real think about your life choices. Who knows perhaps you will realise that peeing sat down in a car is not as easy as you thought and on the whole end up saving yourself a lot of time, money and dignity.
The thing is spontaneous thought is almost essential in creativity. I’m sure we’ve all had the experience when you’re set a creative task and after hours/days/weeks of thinking with nothing to show for it a spark goes off and BAM just like that you see what you’re going to do from start to finish. It might not be fully polished but the idea is there. As one of my favourite satirical comedians, Chris Morris, once said on this matter “as soon as an idea comes to mind, get it down immediately, then roll that turd in glitter.”
Currently doing a bit of turd rolling of my own for the video and poster tasks.