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December 26, 2006
Work At Home! It's Easy; It's Fun!
Well, I took a load of data home with me, along with a first draft of the paper I'm working on. But as usual, my attempts to get any actual work done over the Christmas holidays have shriveled up on contact with the actual days off. I'm not sure why this always seems so plausible while I'm finishing up the last working days of the year, and so laughable three or four days later.
My two children probably have a lot to do with it. They're ready to take me on in a whole list of games, and since they know as well as anyone that these days don't run on a normal schedule, they don't see any reason for me not to be available. (And they have a point!) I find that when I'm thinking hard about a problem, and most especially when I'm writing, that I can't do it with interruptions or extraneous noise. I was better about those when I was in college, but I've lost the ability to deal with them. Or, perhaps I'm just dealing with things that require more thought.
At any rate, my brain needs room to work in, so I'm an awful conversationalist when I have to think hard about something. There's a period in the first few seconds, especially, when I'm working on formulating an answer to something, where any interruption will send the whole thing crashing down. It's hard to describe - thinking about the problem in front of me, I can start to see how this piece might fit over here, and this section seems to be matching up with this one over here, and it feels right to make an analogy to this part, which was the thing that worked when - what? What? We're out of peanuts, and have I watered the Christmas tree today, and do I feel like being pulverized at foosball?
Ah well, my manuscript can wait a few days - it's not like I'm not going to have plenty of opportunities to work on it when I get back. Meeting will not interrupt: my work calendar has attained a state of clarity that Zen rock gardens can only strive for. For now, I need to go show my eight-year-old son that foosball wasn't invented yesterday.
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