And now, the end is near,
and so we face the final Wednesday
My friends, the past is clear
I’ll state my case, life’s just a frenzy . . . *
I am always so surprised at how quickly the first Wednesday rolls around. And a bit dismayed at how little I have accomplished writing-wise since the last one. Which segues nicely into this month’s IWSG’s question:
As you look back on 2017, with all its successes/failures, if you could backtrack, what would you do differently? Two words.
Life moves with such reckless speed. The pressure to do more in less time is simply relentless. I was raised in the era where women learned to “multi-task” in order to accomplish the expected daily output of obligation. “Multi-task” is just a fancy word for doing too many things at one time, and none of them very well. Now we’re all on our devices, checking email, texting, web surfing, doing business, getting directions, buying stuff, going going going and all the while completely oblivious to our surroundings.
I had a smack-my-head moment a couple of weeks ago on a Sunday morning when my dog was scheduled for a bath and nails. In multi-task mode, I wondered how many things I could get “done” on that side of town while she was pampered and petted. I can’t remember the last time I got a massage and manicure . . . oh wait, it was last March.
With a long-lost rebel’s heart, I thought ‘screw it’ to all the obligations and took myself to Panera, bought a latte, and pulled out my writer’s notebook. For two glorious hours, I wrote about whatever came into my view or into my head. A total stream of consciousness of life unfolding in front of me. Groceries and dry cleaning be damned.
But, I have not reviewed those musings or written in my book since. Two hours of doing nothing is very difficult to come by. My writing is squeezed into my lunch hours [multi-tasking, eating without much thought or enjoyment while trying to disengage from the law and into my story – guess how that’s working out . . .] And with the Hell-iday season upon us, legions are now in the HOV lane, hurtling towards exhaustion. [sidebar: is there a law requiring that the five weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas have to be a rushed hot mess?]
But it’s all good. Soon, this rat is leaving the rat race for full-time writing. And when I do, I’m not just moving to the slow lane, I’m getting off the damn super highway and taking some back roads to places I’ve never been. I’ll count my writing time in hours and days instead of minutes. Until then, when I take the dog for her grooming appointments, I’m heading for Panera, notebook in hand.
The best wrap-up on the subject of the rat race is a brilliant video by Steve Cutts, a London-based artist specializing in animation, illustration, painting and sculpture. It’s 4 minutes 16 seconds and it worth every second. I give you:
Many thanks to Captain Ninja and the awesome co-hosts for this month’s IWSG blog hop:
*[apologies to Frank Sinatra]