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Wednesday, November 5, 2003

I'm tying up the loose ends today. In fact, when the Boss phoned, that's what I told him. He asked what I was doing and I said, "I'm tying up the loose ends." If I ran a tight ship, there wouldn't be any loose ends. All the ends would be tight and secure, and tying them up would be the last of my worries.

My ship is anything but tight. In fact, tying up loose ends is hardly limited to the last two days before I go on vacation. That's what I do most of the time, most of the year. If I'm not tying up loose ends, I'm back on my heels, reacting to something that has unexpectedly thrown a monkey wrench into the works.

Everything I do, I do because I've waited as long as I can for someone else to do it, or because if I don't do it I can't do anything else. What it all comes down to in the end is that I can't go on vacation until the loose ends are tied up. It doesn't matter how they got loose. Taking it as it comes means I don't have to play the blame game. If I have a good attitude about it and get it handled eventually, the Boss won't care about the details.

Anyway, I convinced Tim that his guys weren't going to get paid for this week unless I got their time cards by tomorrow morning. He whined that he'd have to guess at the crew's hours for the rest of the week, and I assured him we'd make any adjustments after I get back. No problem.

I've turned in my football pool picks for the next two weeks. I bought Dramamine and AA batteries, plus a pair of shorts (from Kmart! for half price! and they were already cheap!). I'm not quite ready to pack, but I'm ready to start planning how I'm going to pack (probably Thursday night while I'm watching ER). I've had two big suitcases airing out for the last few days, so there's obviously no problem here.

I think I'm coping pretty well with the realization that I'll be gone for ten days with no laundry facilities. Extra socks and underwear, that's the key. Everything else will take care of itself. No problem. Really. Believe it.

30 October 2003

Clouds above the distant trees.

Deadlines are like a drug to me. Or if not a drug, at least an energy bar or a Jolt cola. One more day feels like electricity running through my body (but in a good way). For the first time, I believe that I'm going to get everything done so that (a) I'm ready to leave on time, and (2) I don't spend the whole ten days worrying. If I'm wrong about that, I don't even want to know.

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If I'm worried about anything, it's about how I'm going to fit all the clothes I want to take into two suitcases and a carry-on. That's typical, though. It's the next thing I absolutely positively have to think about, so it's the one thing I'm focused on. Anything further down the line will get its share of my worry once I've crossed this bridge. One trauma at a time, that's my motto.

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"I even thanked her, although as I was walking out the door I wasn't sure what for. Thanks for ruining my day? Thanks for taking my money? Thanks for making me feel like a total jerk? Thanks a lot."

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