Narrow-Gauge Mind

i-ef7ff2642e0ee7790611456b0fc89841-T304712A.jpgMany people who excel at something do so by concentrating on a few tightly defined areas of interest. A colleague of mine once explained to me that she has a narrow-gauge mind (Sw. smalspårig). I like that expression a lot: this woman hasn’t got a one-track mind (Sw. enkelspårig), nor a narrow mind, it’s just narrow gauge. In her case, it seems that the tracks of her mind lead either to Iron Age small finds or to reading mystery novels.

Another colleague once conversed with me for the first time when I was between marriages and pretty one-tracked on the subject of women. This friendly stranger listened patiently as I recounted my recent woes and victories, and then replied, in his cultured Scanian dialect: “Yes, I understand completely. Myself, I’m only really interested in two things: archaeology and sex.”

Perhaps anyone who dedicates their life to something as abstruse and non-lucrative as archaeology is likely to have a narrow-gauge mind.

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