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Sunday, January 16, 2005

It took me long enough to figure this out, but I think I know why the system works for me. Iím talking about working at home and working on weekends and taking all those breaks. I didnít think of it as a system much, until today when I thought, ďThe system works.Ē

Itís breaking my job into bite-sized chunks that makes it more palatable. Iím spoiled for a nine-to-five, forty-hour job where you canít lie down and take a nap in the middle of the day, or spend an afternoon shopping or taking a late lunch, or ease into the morning with a book or a telenovela. Even if it means more actual working hours that extend later into the evening, itís a system that works for me.

Iíve been on that other track, of course. And I worked for years in retail, which is even worse because you work for eight or nine or eleven hours at a stretch, but sometimes you start early in the morning and other times you keep going until midnight. Those early-early and late-late shifts ruined me. I was pretty good at my job until the reaction kicked in and I was tired and cranky all the time. Those arenít qualities that play well with customers in an upscale mall.

On the other hand, with the hours Iím keeping and the sleep Iím missing, Iím not in such great shape now, but at least I donít come into contact with anyone who could be contaminated by my perpetual foul mood. That makes it a little easier to put on a sunny smile and get happy when I do talk to people. All in all, it works out pretty well.

Itís probably worth it, the long hours. It keeps me from dragging along in the morning and it doesnít force me into a frenzy of activity to get to a stopping point by quitting time. There is no quitting time, but there are a lot of recesses, just like in grade school. Only better, because there arenít any playground bullies here.

And if I think about it, I probably did realize that this was a ďsystemĒ and that it was working. I just never consciously articulated it until now. In fact, until now I might have said that I was slacking off too much at work, and I might have felt guilty about it. Did, in fact. But you can forget about that, because anything that can be defended as part of a ďsystemĒ for getting work done more efficiently isnít going to be something I feel guilty about. Or if I feel it, I certainly wonít admit it.

29 December 2004

Circle of clouds.

I put a modified, limited version of the system into practice when I was getting dinner ready tonight. Just because I have a ton of leftovers doesnít mean I have to eat them all at once. Smaller portions being healthier, I took steps. As a bonus, I now have leftovers left over for tomorrow night, too. This wouldnít have happened if Iíd eaten them all tonight. Iím pretty sure of that.

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Now I hope you people who reelected George W. Bush are happy with yourselves. The president says that the election proves that we support the war in Iraq, with all its horrors, and that nobody in his administration needs to be held accountable for mistakes, misjudgments, or the lies they all had to tell to win public support in the first place. Plus, we get to pay for his lavish inaugural celebration that will preempt General Hospital this Thursday. Thanks a lot. I hope youíre happy.

Recent recommendations can always be found on the links page.

One year ago: Infirmary
"As a nurse, I make a pretty good potted plant."

Two years ago: Touch of Freedom
"That car was old even then, when David and his friend Miles were ten. I'm going to miss those stains, but there will be no gooey treats in the Saturn until the super-Scotch Guard is applied."

Three years ago: Distracted
"It looks more the way it would if my manic mole invited his crazy cousins over to plow up my yard a little faster than he could do it alone."

Four years ago: Changed Conditions Ahead
"I doubt that he knows why yesterday was a holiday; he might not even believe that it was, although if I told him the sky had turned purple, he'd probably believe that."

Five years ago: June in January
"Now I've decided that it's going to be different, but it's going to be okay. I've finally realized that no matter what anyone does, we will all be together."

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