Flooding…

Sometimes when it rains a lot, it floods. That’s because there is too much water all around all at once –  on the ground, in the drains, or streams  – it can’t take it all in and so it floods. The reason I’m telling you this is because the human brain does the same thing.That’s right, our brains can flood. This is when we either receive too much information or too much emotion causing information that makes all of our brain drain, streams and ability to soak stuff in, overflow. When this happens, we become, temporarily in most cases, flooded and we cannot respond.This happens to me on a regular basis. When I’m put on the spot, usually and the boss wants to know “Why haven’t you completed your assignment? Why are you leaving early? Why did you come in late? Why aren’t you with the customer? Why are your files a mess? Why is your desk a mess? Why haven’t you returned my phone calls? Why is your mouth hanging open? Why aren’t you answering me?”Of course it doesn’t have to be my boss making me flood. It can and has been sometimes, my wife. She just has to walk in the room and say “Didn’t you tell me you were going to fold the laundry, finish the dishes, pick up the kids, feed the dog, and NOT watch television on your day off?” Boom! I’m flooding. So I sit there, on the couch, remote in mid-air, flooding. I mean, I can’t even keep on channel surfing.This has happened to me, (and I’m sure you, too) since I was a small child. I would come home all excited and say the new word I learned while listening to the men next door building a new house. I would casually slip it into the conversation and my mother would just look at me and I would flood.I wouldn’t be able to move. I was frozen to the ground. Then she would ask, “What did you just say?” Of course I knew if I said it again, I’d be in big trouble and if I didn’t, I’d be in big trouble. The wheels in my brain would spin. They would spin and spin. I didn’t know which way to go with the answer and so I’d merely flood.And then in high school, I’d occasionally flood when the girl in a low cut dress and short mini skirt would walk by. She say a cute little hello to me, like, “Get out of the way, jerk.” She was just so enchanting that I would be flooding. I mean I was taking in so much at the same time, so I’d just stand there, in her way, blocking the door, mouth hanging open, eyes bulging, until one of the football players would body-slam me out of her way. I’d try to wave goodbye from the floor.Oh well, you can see that flooding happens to many of us. Just the other day I had so much on my mind I ran a stop sign. I was beginning to flood as the officer stepped up to the window and began giving me way too much information. “Can you afford the fine for running a stop sign, sir? Did you know your vehicle’s turn signals aren’t working? This license expired two months ago. This isn’t your vehicle registration, it looked like dumb ideas for a column called Totally Paul.”

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