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Saturday, December 3, 2005

I had a harder than usual time relaxing today, especially for a Saturday. I donít know whatís wrong with me, but I couldnít enjoy my day off because other things kept wafting through my mind.

After working for a while this morning (really early afternoon, because the morning was mostly gone before I ever got started), I had a window of time, so I sat down to read a book. A very good book. I canít tell you what book because Iím thinking of giving it away, if itís as very good as I think it is. But I only got through two or three chapters before I started thinking about how much more work I had to do.

So I stopped, put a bookmark in my place, and went back to my spreadsheets. Before I knew it, it was starting to get dark, and I wouldnít be able to read any more today without turning on a light. So I finished working and sat down to watch a movie. A very good movie. I canít tell you what movie because Iím thinking of giving the DVD away, if itís as very good as it started out to be. But I only got through about ten or fifteen minutes before I started thinking about my Christmas list.

So I paused the movie and took out my list. Iím not very far along with my shopping, but I know what Iíd like to get most of the people on it. I also know what I can afford to get, and thereís a pretty huge gap there. So while I was watching the movie, a kind of compromise occurred to me, something that would make me feel a little better about not being able to give as much as Iíd like.

Before I got very far along with this project, the phone rang. The Boss. The work Iíd faxed him earlier in the day had made an impact (or maybe a dent, Iím not sure which). Was he calling to thank me, or congratulate me? No, he was calling to question me about it, and to see if I felt like spending my Saturday night tweaking cost reports and researching invoices and reconciling billings.

By the time we got very far along with this project, I had every light in the house on, so I could see what I was doing. Why, it was bright enough to read! Itís just too bad that I couldnít stop and do that. He kept telling me he didnít want to make me work on Saturday night, if I didnít want to. Of course I didnít want to, but I also didnít want to put it off and have it hanging over me for a couple of days, so that every time I sat down to read a book or watch a movie, Iíd be bouncing up and trying to tweak and research and reconcile.

2 December 2005

Streak in the sky.

This went on for a while, but by the time the Boss was ready to quit, it was still only 6:30 pm. It seemed later to me, but if Iíd had a mind to, I could have gone out on the town. We all know I donít do that, so I went back to my movie instead. I had to start it over, but at least I could watch it in a more relaxed frame of mine. Right up until the time I thought of something else I needed to do right away.

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I guess I can understand why Dale Earnhardt Jr. was again voted by the fans as the most popular driver in NASCAR. I mean, heís an okay driver (who finished nineteenth in the standings this year) and the son of a famous father (who was an icon while he was alive but not exactly beloved or revered until he died). Heís well marketed, and his bright red Budweiser number 8 car is instantly recognizable. Heís certainly more likeable than Kurt Busch or Ryan Newman, more charismatic than Matt Kenseth or Jimmie Johnson, and better looking than Greg Biffle (as Biffle would be the first to admit). But heís not as funny as Carl Edwards and not as amiable as Rusty Wallace and not as competitive as Mark Martin and not as good a driver as Tony Stewart. Heís never won a championship; Jeff Gordon, who came in second in the popularity poll, has won four. So I guess I can understand why Junior is the most popular, but I just donít see it myself.

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One year ago: Prime Factors
"I thought, quite seriously, 'Itís too bad he had to grow up.' Then I thought, 'Itís too bad he didnít.'"

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