TEDTalks Thinks I’m a Slut

Okay, that might be a little strong, but not by much.

Have I mentioned the computer I have at the day job? Imagine a habitrail. The hamster snoozing in his wheel represents my computer’s RAM. On Friday, I was working on an InDesign file. Seven pages, two photos per page. Two. In order to work on the file, I had to break it into seven files, one page per file. Want to guess how long it took to print a page? Go on, you know you want to. Twenty minutes.

In order to do anything with one of these files, I had to close everything else. Everything. No Spotify, which isn’t a loss since I was trapped in a never-ending loop of Don’t Stop Believin’. No chat. No database to manage. Nothing.

With a lot of time to kill. I thought about pulling out my laptop, which does not run off of hamster power, and doing some of a lynda.com class, but that wasn’t going to go over well. And no obvious texting at work, so no chatting with Reunion Guy for me.

Chatting with Reunion Guy is a challenge. He knows things. Smart things. I have to work to hold up my end of the conversation. And I love it because I spend a lot of my day waiting on the hamster in my computer and working with people who do not use me to my full potential. But apparently Reunion Guy has a day job too. It comes with an impossible To Do list, better tech and not a lot of time to spend amusing me. I think it’s time to rewrite his job description, but whatever.

So what to do while I’m waiting… After the online class idea, I considered watching the last episode of Angel on my iPad. Do not mock. I was busy having kids when Buffy and Angel were on originally, so I’m playing catch up. But I can’t really talk my way around that if I’m caught. Also, I actually have to watch that show.

That’s when I remembered TEDTalks. It’s not like you have to watch them. They’re talks. Some guy on a stage talking. The iPad doesn’t even have to be facing me, so no worries there. Ha! A plan. And seventeen minutes before a piece of paper kicks out of the printer. So I bop over to TED on the iPad and scan the mix of stuff on the main page and come to… Christopher Ryan’s Are We Designed to be Sexual Omnivores?

Okay, yes it’s a great title and I was intrigued. It was pretty engaging and thought-provoking. Happy day. My last awake brain cell was being challenged. You know what happens after you watch a TEDTalk? It suggests other talks you might enjoy. You know what you can’t do when you’re trying to look busy waiting for a printer to print? Scroll through the complete list of talks. So hey, they have a suggestion, I might as well watch it.

And their suggestion? Helen Fisher’s Why We Love, Why We Cheat. After that, it was a lovely French woman explaining what kills desire in long-term relationships. The funny thing is, with her accent, she made it sound great. Are you sensing a theme? Is there something TED is trying to tell me?

All I did was keep playing their next suggestion for me. Which is how I, the romance writer and firm believer in happily-ever-afters, listened to an hour of psychologists, anthropologists and scientists tell me that humans are not meant to be monogamous, the many reasons people cheat, and what our significant other can do to be more appealing to us.

I choose to believe TED wanted me better prepared for my next relationship. Or better prepared to torture my characters. Either one works for me.