FOMO (that’s Fear of Missing Out) crept into my throat in perfect harmony with the virus that dragged me down last month.
Simply having the cold isn’t so bad. You sneeze, drink tea, nap.
Having a cold in Boulder, though — where there’s so much to do year-round — is bad for those of us with FOMO. You’re missing out on climbing, skiing, cycling, interesting shows and tasty food. (Not that you can appreciate tasty food when it feels like you licked a cat and then shoved cotton balls up your nose.)
Your friends make it worse. Your friends are out having lots of fun without you, and they tell you about it. All you can do is mope around the house with your laptop, nursing your nominal virus and a secondary infection of incurable Acute Missing Outitis (a severe form of FOMO).
Over the course of my three-day, not-so-bad cold, I had the following FOMO/AMO interactions with friends in Boulder:
Evite reminder for Kim’s clothing swap: I love this trend. And I missed it. Fortunately I’d been to another clothing swap recently (and scored a killer skirt), so my FOMO was easily abated.
E-mail from Piper: Piper says she’s disappointed that I will not be joining her to climb at Movement on Tuesday night. A master of guilt, she rubs it in by adding that she’ll miss my climbing quirk of saying “crush crush crush!” in a Cookie Monster voice. (My husband came home from climbing with Piper bearing Chez Thuy leftovers, which was only forgiven because he shared them with me.)
IM with Melanie: “You can’t make it to Ignite?!? Sad panda!” I snagged tickets to Thursday’s Ignite Boulder two weeks ago just to see my friend Erika’s presentation on how the f-bomb will make America greener (it’s about ecology of language). I wanted to see Ignite’s other savvy, funky presentations, too. Not many towns have enough proud brainiac geeks to put on an Ignite. Boulder does. I missed it.
Facebook message from friend Cheryl: Cheryl messages me about going to Ouray for the holidays to ice climb, and she’s extra excited because she’s having the hardware taken out of her leg; it was installed after a fall climbing in Eldo over the summer.
Cheryl’s message ends with: “… explored the ice in boulder canyon today (upper/lower falls just past castle rock). looks like a great adventure forming!!!” Normally a trickle up the canyon wouldn’t excite me, but a side effect of FOMO is that even things that are a bad idea sound good when you can’t go.
There will be other clothing swaps and more Ignite events, but Cheryl represents the worst part of having a cold in Boulder. She’s the friend who, though extremely sweet, makes you feel incredibly lame for staying home with a mere cold.
Cheryl has been limping around the climbing gym and the Alpine Training Center for months; her arms and shoulders look like they were carved by Vikings. And I’m missing out and getting weak because my throat is scratchy?
I resisted temptation, though: I stayed home and didn’t spread the germs. And now I get to enjoy the best part of FOMO — recovery. Luckily, Boulder is the best place I can think of to rehab one’s FOMO. I just made plans to meet a friend early Saturday morning to climb in Rocky Mountain. My voice is still a little gravelly, but I don’t want to miss out.