Areas of Unrest
2 July 1999 - The Puzzle People
Impending three day weekends always trigger vast ambitions in me. A whole extra day! Surely I will magically accomplish everything I've been putting off for months - or at least from the last three day weekend. The problem is that I then procrastinate and end up getting even less done than on normal weekends.
This time I really need the time off. It serves me right for having recently complained about being bored at work. No sooner do I say that (in email to a friend, not to anyone at work) than I get an urgent request for a technical evaluation on a change proposal. Then my least favorite area of our system requirements returns in its next incarnation. Or, as I told Milo and Jim, "well, yes, we did nail a stake in the heart of that vampire, but it turned out to have a cousin." I have now spent more work hours on this than on anything else since I've been back - and it all has to do with the definition of a two word phrase! (Lest you think this is trivial, the current definition is six pages long.) And then there were assorted meetings to slog through and a very important barbecue to attend at which I briefly met a visiting Australian air marshal (I think this is equivalent to at least a full colonel, possibly higher) and let someone talk my ear off about her obsession with concrete and watched our colonel embarass himself in the water rocket contest. We think there was a defective seal on his rocket but he still took some ribbing about it being a good thing we're not a launch vehicle program. And then there was all that time seeing movies and watching anime videos and walking and getting my folding chairs back from Penny to put in my storage space and picking up a sampler from the framers and so on. Getting the sampler framed was a real accomplishment, by the way, since it's the very first one I stitched, circa 1972. And I think I've even figured out where to hang it. Oh, and I also bought and started listening to a Japanese tape in the car. I have been mispronouncing "Sayonara" for my entire life - the stress is on the 2nd syllable, not the third. Which means I have already gotten my money's worth from the tape since it will mean that if I do go to Japan I'll save myself ten dollars worth of embarassment.
So what do I plan to do this weekend? Here's a partial list:
The only really weird item on the list is the jigsaw puzzle and I should mention that this is apparently an inherited oddity. Everyone in my family gets sudden and overwhelming cravings to do jigsaw puzzles at least once or twice a year, resulting in rushed trips to game stores and a sleepless night or two until the puzzle is completed and the craving is conquered. Then we're perfectly normal - well, okay, reasonably normal - for another 6-12 months until the craving hits again. Some day they will identify the gene that causes one to be a puzzle person and eradicate it but, for now, the toy store beckons.
Copyright 1999 Miriam H. Nadel
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