Another day draws away

16 06 2016

So I’m currently unemployed—which sucks—so one might think I’d be gettin’ all kinds of work done.

One has not met me, I see.

No, I’m one of those folks that if I have 5 things to do, I get 5 things done; 10, and maybe 8, maybe all ten.

But one thing? Two? Nope. Or 5 things, or ten, with no particular deadline? That’d be a no.

I’ve had posts in mind, but, clearly, haven’t written them. I have notes and files from this past semester that need to be sorted before the fall; they remain unsorted. Notes to prepare for my July class? Ha ha ha.

Okay, I did manage (today, finally), to enter books I purchased this past semester into my Filemaker database, and, finally, to figure out how to export it all to an Excel file (very easy). And I began sorting through those entries, highlighting those which lacked info (ISBN, say, or publisher) or which, because I may no longer own them or were duplicates, should be deleted.

(Which, shees, some of those books I clearly got rid of either before I left Minneapolis or before I left Somerville, but I still felt a pang seeing those titles. Did I really get rid of the Wonnacott & Wonnacott stats books, or are they in my folks’ attic? Whyyyy didn’t I keep the Shively? Honestly, I haven’t needed or even thought about those books for years, but here I am, panging after them. Pitiful.)

So, yeah. That I managed to pull my nose out of my naval long enough to do ONE THING today could mean I’m on an upswing. . . or that I’ll say, Okey-dokey, that was enough for this week.

TUNE IN, then, for another exciting episode of Will she or won’t she?

Or not.



Wait wait wait

20 05 2015

Two things:

1. The reasons I want to be on Twitter are the reasons I shouldn’t be on Twitter.

2. Want to make something relatively small relatively big, and then small again?

Easy: Don’t do that small thing, day after day after day, until it looms so large that you can’t not do it, after which it shrinks back to smallness.

Bonus thing! Delay checking enrollment on your summer session-I course, and then, upon finding out it’s so low it likely will be cancelled, think, Huh, guess I should put up a freelancing ad, and then not do it.

You know, on the off chance that in the next 10 days enough students will sign up and everything will be all right.

Because nothing like doing nothing to make sure everything will be all right.

And I said, nothing

11 05 2015

So this is what happens.

I have ideas, my thoughts scatter, I write nothing.

Next day, maybe I have thoughts, maybe I’m tired, I write nothing.

Then I’m busy, then maybe crabby, then maybe with the ideas; but: nothing.

This is how it goes for blogging, but it could be anything: The following days are some combination of plans, fatigue, and moodiness, mixed in with active avoidance of the thing I’ve been avoiding, thus creating anxiety about both the thing and the avoiding of the thing.

Nothing nothing (I should be doing something) nothing (something!) nothing (do it now!) nothing nothing nothing.

Oh, fuck it, I gotta do something, just to get over the not-doing-anything.

So, yes, substantively a bullshit blog entry, but as a tactic, it should get me movin’ again.


Doctor, doctor

1 09 2013

Two things.

One, migraines suck. I know, not news, but I feel it’s important to mention.

Two, I wish my medical coverage (which is on the whole not-too-bad) included dental.

I have three unrepaired broken teeth, and while two of the three are molars and the problem with the front tooth isn’t too evident, I’d really like to get at least the front tooth and one of the molars (which, unlike its opposite on the other side of my mouth, keeps losing bits) fixed.

I also need eye surgery (which is a third thing, I guess), but I’ve been too lazy to deal with my insurer to find out what I need to git ‘er done-and-covered.

My last eye surgery, over a decade ago, was a relatively minor procedure, involving a short outpatient surgery under conscious sedation and a scrip for Vicodan. This one will necessarily be more complicated, tho’ not so much that I think it will require a hospital stay.

Still, I’m going to look—and feel—like I lost a bar fight, so I need to time it to my breaks in teaching. That shouldn’t be too difficult to do, but, y’know, I’d need actually to plan this all out and. . . blegh.

On the other hand, the problems with my peepers are getting progressively worse, so perhaps that will propel me finally to push past my procrastination.

The secret to my [lack of] success: wait for things to get sufficiently terrible to do something about them!

Declare the pennies on your eyes

14 04 2013

I am unreservedly a  “taxes-are-the-price-you-pay-for-a-civilized-society” sort.

Still. Principles are one thing, and payments are another.

I usually owe state taxes (beyond what I’ve already paid) because even though I earn shit I live in a state that taxes shit. So be it.

I usually get a return on fed taxes because I earn shit.

This year, or, y’know, last year, I earned 1099 freelance income (for the job that almost killed me until C. yelled GETOUTNOW!), and since I didn’t pay estimated taxes, knew I’d have to pay fed tax, too, as well as more state tax.

Does this explain why I waited until tonight to file my taxes? Hey, I think I’m good for not waiting until tomorrow. . . .

Anyway, the hit was about what I expected, and much less than I feared, so, while I ain’t happy to be sending off checks (yes, I filed electronically, but why not let my money sit in my account a few more days before they process the checks?), it’s not killing me.

Yeah, that’s the best I can say about this whole thing.

And the worst? Well, allow me this one day to say “Civilized society? Feh!”

Snap that thin thread

29 03 2013

I used to be so good.

Not my character or morals, no: I used to be so good about staying on top of things.

“Things”, y’know, basic life-things. Bills, paperwork, returning calls—all of those miscellaneous and mostly mindless tasks which are a price of living in society.

Then, at some point, I wasn’t.

Don’t know exactly when it happened—I recall even well into my depressive cups I managed to deal with insurance and student loans and whatnot—but at some point I just gave up. It’s not that I suddenly stopped taking care of these tasks, but that I lost the sense that it made sense to stay ahead of them.

No, wait, that’s not right: I never lost the sense that it made sense. No, what I lost was. . . the will? the habit? of proper task management. It’s as if once that rubber band snapped, I no longer knew how to keep my shit together, and was reduced to denial, dread, and oh-shit last-minute scatter-shot toss-offs.

I get it done, but in the worst way possible.

This is no way to be an adult human being. It’d be one thing if the whirlwind approach didn’t bother me, but those small to-dos just grow and grow and grow in the middle of my chest* until they crack my ribs and leave me panting for air. I am so anxious about dealing with the things when they’re small that I can’t deal with them until they’re big, at which point my sleep is punctured and concentration swiss-cheesed.

You’d think that knowing how badly I react to stretching a task out I’d hop to it immediately, but it’s almost as if the anticipation of the late-anxiety rebounds backwards into a show-stopping early anxiety—which, because it’s early, I’m able to suppress, albeit with ever-decreasing success. By the end, the stress of the task is magnified by the looming deadline, and I’m left, well, sleep-deprived and wild-eyed.

No, it’s not everything: the more routine the task, the more habitual my response, but even there, I’m not as automatic as I used to be. I know what I have to do, but that knowledge is only sketchily linked to the doing.

And that, frankly, sucks. I know that there are things from the past which are gone, gone, gone daddy gone, but it would nice if I could get this particular mojo back.


*Yes, I finally did that thing. Not at the actual last-minute, but damned close.

So when they ask me later, I won’t tell them how it’s going

8 11 2009

So much to do, so little inclination to follow through.

Grading. A kajillion papers. Or 70. Somewhere in there.

The papers aren’t long. If I start grading now, do some tomorrow night, then Tuesday and Wednesday, I’ll be fine.

Or I could just wait until Wednesday—night—and stay up too late and get too little sleep and plow through and end up kicking myself for being such a procrastinating idiot.

Hmmmm, wonder what I’ll do.

Then again, I punted on dealing with the whole credit thing, but  that’s taken finally been taken care of. For now. And If I get a real job, there’ll be no worries at all.

Of course, there are all these worries over getting a real job.

And I’m doing all I can to get a real job—ja, you betcha. Sure.

That’s on the list, eh? And we all know how well that whole list thing is going, right-o? Sure.

If only I were motivated by free-floating anxiety.


Bitter pill

22 09 2008

Ahhh, Sunday. My one day off. I used to dislike Sundays—the day before Monday—but now that it is the only I can spend the day in glorious indolence, I rather like it.

I do tend to hate the lead-up to a dreaded phenomenon almost as much as the phenomenon itself—sometimes more so. So, while agreeing with the Boomtown Rats’s general sentiments on Monday, I have held Monday against Sunday. Similarly, dreading hot weather, I hold summer against spring.

A neighbor to this sensibility is the desire to get the worst or unavoidable parts of an activity out of the way, first. Thus, when painting, I do the trim work first, then just let it roll over the walls. When moving, I grab all of the stuff out of the closets and cupboards, first, so that I’m not surprised by extra work at the back end. Hell, even as a high schooler and undergrad, I overloaded my early years so as to ensure flexibility later. (It was worth it: on alternating Fridays in high school I had more study halls than classes.)

Unfortunately, this determination only goes so far. In fact, if I don’t do dreaded tasks early, I may not do them at all, or only do them embarassingly or inconveniently late. I can drag my ass on the most mundane of to-dos: changing addresses, making doctors’ appointments, calling in a refill, renewing my driver’s license (really gotta get on that), sending letters to literary agents (really really gotta get on that). Done early: no big deal. Done late: HUUUUGE deal.

This is not mere procrastination (as with, say, the sixty papers sitting on top of my filing cabinet), but a kind of sulky refusal to deal with my life. ‘I don wanna’. Please. I’m too damned many years old to be acting like this. If I can manage to deal with ordinary procrastination (that is, of the sort which involves my wage-work) and get stuff done, why can’t I puncture the inflated meaning attached to the ordinary tasks of life? Because that is the problem: By my inaction, I turn these prosaic matters into something operatic.

God. I remember when my neuroses would poke me into getting shit done. Even they’ve given up.