Bemused… not to be confused with amused. I must admit, I used to think they meant the same thing but they don’t.
Bemused is what I am much of the time. As a writer, when I get caught up in something I’m working on, I often become absent-minded, dazed, distracted, and befuddled. (Don’t you just love a good thesaurus?)
Stress can cause a certain amount of bemusement. Once I have something stuck in my noggin that is causing me anxiety it’s like everything else around me ceases to matter. Stuff I’m actually physically doing gets done with the least amount of thought, much to the detriment of dry sleeves, clean floors, healthy toes, and undented fenders. No, I haven’t gone there yet, at least not because I’ve been distracted, but I’ve come close. What driver hasn’t? It’s a real eye-opener when it does almost happen though.
A good end to bemusement.
Being bemused is the cause of walking into a room and having no idea why I’m there. Or losing something I had in my hand only a second ago, making me wonder if I’m losing my mind… which I am, to bemusement.
According to this wonderful book I have sitting beside me, it’s also a synonym for tipsy and half-drunk. There’s something I can relate to, though not as often as I’m simply lost in my thoughts.
And so I try to focus; live in the moment, stay aware of my surroundings and what I’m doing. It’s harder than it seems and takes quite a bit of practice. We live inside our minds as much, if not more, than we live inside our bodies. Take reading, or watching a movie for instance. When we’re really into something, the rest of the world disappears. Ceases to exist. Until someone taps us on the shoulder or spills popcorn in our lap. But then that’s not bemusement. It’s concentration. Isn’t it?
No, I believe bemusement is more introverted. It’s self-absorption that can rise to a most dangerous level.
Which is not amusing in the slightest.