I have some habits which have suddenly struck me as potentially quite peculiar. I've never really thought about it because they're just things that I do and that's the way it is but I had a sudden moment today where I realised I was doing something and, much like the alcoholic, a moment of clarity peeped through the clouds of possible insanity. Let's start with a mild one to ease you in...
A, B, C...
I have a tendency to alphabetise. This is by no means uncommon but I do know some people look at me as if I'm a bit odd when I mention it. Upon fidning this out, someone actaully said to me the other day, "Oh, I didn't realise you were one of those". Yep, I certainly am. This is mainly DVDs and CDs, to be fair, though. It doesn't extend to books (books aren't a uniform shape and size and it looks more untidy when they're alphabetised - instead, they're grouped by size and theme). It's partly an organisational thing - I have a ridiculous amount of stuff and I wouldn't be able to find it if there wasn't some sort of system. There is, however, something inside that gets a little twitchy when the order is violated. I mean, it doesn't go there, does it - it starts with a D. Think, man, think. It's very straightforward.
So when I'm reading a book, the first thing is see how many pages it has and then work out where the halfway point so I can tell at all times exactly how far through the book I am. I have no idea when I started doing this - I just do it. I also don't generally use a bookmark - I just remember the page number. That's normally where the comparison point comes in. "Ah, only 47 more pages and I'm halfway through." Maybe that helps to cement the number in my mind. Maybe I should just use a bookmark. I do still work out the halfway point, though, on the occasions that I do use a bookmark so maybe not.
This was the thing that set me off thinking about odd habits. In general, whenever I see a long number (and it's usually a phone number), I have this odd urge to mentally add up all the digits to see what the sum is. I have absolutely no idea at all where this one comes from. It has no practical use (other than keeping the old mental arithmetic ticking over slightly) and I then have nothing whatsoever I can do with that information when I have it. It's not as if I'm going to turn to the person next to me and say, "Hey, did you realise that the sum of that phone number is 34?" They would look at me, smile politely and then back away slowly whilst keeping me in their field of vision at all times. And who can blame them?
So, there you go, a couple of odd habits which all just go to prove that I'm Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man (and, much like him, I'm not wearing any underwear).