I spent the first nine hours of today mistakenly under the impression that it was Thursday.
It turns out, it is not… and that has been a tremendous disappointment throughout the remainder of the day.
It’s mostly a disappointment because it injects an additional day between me and my next scheduled long weekend. In the panoply of possible sins, that feels like a mortal one, as there’s not much I take more seriously than time spent not spent fiddling with spreadsheets and briefing slides.
Since I had originally planned to fire off the week’s edition of What Annoys Jeff this Week tonight, I don’t have all that much to say. I was woefully unprepared to need what now feels like an extra post this week.
What I will say, without additional comment or commentary, is that almost eight months into doing business under the black flag of the plague, you’d think we’d have sorted out most of the day to day issues. You’d think that, but you couldn’t be more wrong. The deeper we forge into the plague lands, the more people seem to forget about things I thought we’d sorted out months ago.
That realization seems somehow fitting for the day, really.
No good day starts with the boss wandering by to see you and starting off with the warning, “Well, you’re not going to like this…”
Yeah, some people have a real talent for understatement. I’m not going to get into the how and why of not not like “this,” because it’s not all that important. I mean it’s bad enough being served a double helping of shit sandwich without recounting the experience in agonizing detail. Right?
I’m also not reliving the experience because the insult added to this particular injury was as bad if not worse than the “this” that I was sure not to like. You see, I walked through the entire first half of the day thinking that it was Thursday and that only a “make up” telework day stood between me and the weekend.
Realizing my my error well into the day, I just opted to give up all hope… because other than meaning another day of not living under a bridge, I’m not going to like any of this.
The older I get the more I realize exactly why keeping whiskey in your desk drawer is frowned upon. Sigh. If only I didn’t have to avoid unemployment and the inevitable poverty that follows.
You can say what you will about raucous benders, trips through Amish Country, and adventures on the high seas, but as for me, the best weekends tend to be the ones where I don’t have much to say on Sunday night. It means they went more or less according to plan, weren’t jam packed with the yammering of strangers, and essentially allowed me to deal with the least amount of stupid possible. Those weekends don’t tend to make for great blogging, but they do tend to leave me feeling rested. That’s saying something especially coming hard on the heels of a dog that insisted on barking through every roll of thunder and gust of wind all the previous night.
Like all good things this too must end. Daylight tomorrow will break on a computer that may or may not be networked, a gaggle of senior personnel who have decided over the weekend that months of planning need to be changed overnight, remembering we’re in the midst of an election with no good choices, and the general asshattery that comes along with your average Monday. That makes these good weekends, the best of them, among the most rare of gems. And you can’t beat that with a stick.
I was all set to sit down tonight and hammer out this week’s three-pronged edition of What Annoys Jeff this Week. Then, sadly, I was met with the realization that it’s only Wednesday. Only. Effing. Wednesday. I guess it only feels like each day this week is managing to distort time so that it feels like a week unto itself.
It’s one of those weeks where I put some real analytical horsepower into whether I should just sell it all, load a few bags in the truck, and start driving, how far I could drive before I needed to stop, and what I’d do whenever I got there. I like the roof I’ve got over my head too much to ever let that be more than a passing thought, but still the thought was there. I don’t really know what that’s supposed to mean, but it’s a happier thought that it probably should be.
Some weeks are better than others. I suppose that’s equally true of days and even years, too. For whatever reason, this one has decided to be a real whore, though. I’ve been cautioned against wishing my life away, but I’d be ok with this next few days passing on with all possible speed as I’ve accepted that no good is going to come between now and close of business on Friday.
Not long after I finished putting the finishing touches on What Annoys Jeff this Week, I realized that today is Wednesday. It feels vaguely like that may end up as the rare “4th thing” this week. With one written and reasonably well edited blog post in the barn for today, you can imagine my level of interest in ginning up another one on what is essentially no notice. Although it does happen from time to time subject to the demands of late breaking news, turning one around because I was too dense to count the days of the week doesn’t happen very often. In fact I wish it wasn’t happening right now, because then I’d be off tending to other things.
I could have gone ahead and made a one time only adjustment and run with what I had on Wednesday instead of Thursday, but after 2+ years it’s a rhythm I feel hard pressed to break now. Therefore, instead of something well reasoned, or dare I say even entertaining, you’re getting a fly-by-night fill in post in hopes that it will pass as good enough for Wednesday. It probably will. For all its vaunted status as the middle of the week, Wednesday still strikes me as the point where people are too worn down to pay all that much attention to anything that isn’t their deep, longing desire for Friday to be here already.
You know it’s interesting… There are a metric crapload of things going on in the world that are worth commenting on, even if it’s just in passing. The older I get, though, the more difficult I find it to make myself be interested in those things. Maybe it’s just advanced cynicism setting in or a decreasing level of tolerance for bullshit, but more and more often it feels like the world just being the world – messy, chaotic, and headed directly to hell in a hand basket.
Or I could just be busy enough tending my own garden to give a good damn about what new asshattery is lose in the world on any given day.
I’m fairly sure that somewhere we are enjoined to maintain Sunday as a day of rest. And while I’m sure that’s a fine theory, it adds up to 1/7 of the week where I’m not getting a damned thing done and that plan just isn’t going to hold water. So yes, as we speak I’m blatantly disregarding the command of having a “day of rest.” There’s laundry to do, floors to scrub, a bathroom in desperate need of cleaning, shrubbery that needs cutting back, a dog in need of a bath, and at least two more meals that are going to have to be cooked. That’s just the top few items on the list.
As great as a day of rest every week sounds, it’s just not going to happen. If I’m lucky, I’ll carve out a few days for that a couple of times a year, but getting there once a week is a pipe dream if I’ve ever heard one. There’s no way around my Sundays being filled with ticking things off the long list of shit I didn’t get to in the previous six days. For some reason, I don’t think that breaking a sweat on the sabbath is going to be the sin that pushes me over the edge. Just between you and me, it’s probably not even in the list of top ten sins I’ve committed this week so I’ve got that going for me.
So if you’ll excuse me, it’s time to quit pecking at the keyboard and get a few more things done this morning.
I was in the home stretch this afternoon. Four turns and maybe 2 miles from the house. I was even running a few minutes ahead of the normal arrival time. It was good right up until I approached the start of a sharp series of turns running alongside the state forest and saw the flashing lights blocking the road. Apparently some doucheknocker took the turn a little fast and a little wide and ended up getting his machine mangled for his trouble. I know from experience that the turns in that spot are tricky. The road is narrow, with guardrails and 20 foot drop offs on either side. It’s precisely the kind of turn you don’t want to be in when you realize you’re driving beyond your meager abilities. I’d be hard pressed to tell you the number of days a year I pass through that stretch and see fresh damage on the guardrails, thrashed car parts off in the woods, or the shimmer of freshly broken glass dust catching my headlights in the morning. It’s easily in the double digits. Those days are going to get more frequent now that the trees are filling in and you can’t see what’s coming in the opposite direction.
I wasn’t able to tell the full story this afternoon, but there’s a good chance I can read the road and tell you what happened when I drive through there in the morning. It’s not so much that care if someone outdrove their abilities. It’s not so much that I care they closed the road at just the moment I was trying to go through. It’s mostly that based on where I decided to live, a road closure in that one stretch of road causes me a 20-odd minute detour because there’s really no other good way to get here from there. Sure, that’s more of an inconvenience for the driver who smashed up his ride than it is for me, but it was just one more in a series of reminders today that this week has been and apparently plans to continue being one pain in the ass after another.
I won’t presume to speak for all the vast sweep of humanity, but sometimes I just hit a point in the day where no amount of additional effort is going to create any significant gains. It’s like trying to accelerate to the speed of light. Getting close is easy enough if you’ve got the right equipment, but getting that last little punch of speed requires the application of infinitely more energy. The problem being, of course, that it’s (under our current understanding of how the universe works) impossible to supply any system with infinite energy.
I hit just such a wall at 2:56 this afternoon. I mean I just hit a spot in the day that I couldn’t power through no matter how much coffee or sugar I poured into the system. My brain laid down a very clear line of demarcation, letting me know that I’d go no further. Maybe with a little more time I could have found a way to circle around and come at the day from a different angle, but with end of the day closing in, a new avenue of approach wasn’t really an option anyway.
Under the circumstances, the only thing to do was stiffen my upper lip and ride through the last hour of the day trying not to make waves or get noticed. My brain just wouldn’t answer the helm this afternoon and for a guy who pays the bills based on what the ol’ brain box puts out, it’s damned humbling experience. I’m going to write it off to being a problem transitioning to Daylight Saving Time and not as a harbinger of a God awful week waiting to happen. Check back with me on Friday to see how well that theory holds up.
1. Short weeks feel the longest. Why is it that a four day week feels at least twice as long as its standard five day counterpart? I’m sure there’s some deep psychoanalytical reason for it, but regardless it’s just stupid. Stupid and wrong. They say time flies when you’re having fun. Clearly “they” are full of shit and it flies when you’re just barely keeping your head above water too.
2. Furlough Fridays. Look, if you’re going to start letting me stay home on Fridays, how about not waiting for six weeks to kick off the new schedule. I’m more or less resolved that it’s the new reality, but there’s really no reason at this point not to dive in to the three day weekends right away. I mean that seems like the least echelons higher than reality could to to ease our transition to part time employees.
3. The birthday thing. I generally try to be a good sport because, well, it seems to be expected, but really I’d be just as happy if the whole birthday thing would pass as discreetly as possible. Some people want to celebrate for a week or the whole month. When the time comes, I’ll open a good bottle of wine, salute my good fortune at having managed not to drop dead for another 365 days, and get on with whatever else it was I planned on doing Saturday evening. Chances are I’ll pass the night either with my nose stuck in a good book or trying to write a half-assed one.
4. Bulldog checkups. Winston’s yearly physical and vaccinations are coming up tomorrow afternoon. The only good thing is that if you’re willing to take one of the last appointments of the day on Friday, I can get the vaccinations at half price. Inconvenient? Yes, absolutely… but when you’ve spent five years keeping up with bulldog related vet bills, you learn to take your savings where you can since it’s pretty inevitable they’ll discover something new and interesting that’ll need treated while we’re there.