I am awful at the art of procrastinating. As my mother reminded me last night, I was the high school girl who would announce at the dinner table “I have a paper due in three weeks so I think I’m going to start it tonight!” And I wasn’t just giving lip service to the act of immediacy; I actually began and completed assignments well ahead of their due dates.
However, it’s not exclusively because of my get ‘er done personality. A significant factor contributing to my persistent sense of urgency is my inability to enjoyably waste time. Simply put, I stink at doing nothing. Though I work in television, there is not enough good programming to keep me sufficiently distracted. And despite the wide web that is the internet, I am neither compelled nor particularly interested in reading esoteric wikipedia pages in an effort to avoid the inevitable task of the day.
In those moments when I’ve been given a task I don’t want to do– such as cleaning the toilet bowl– I scour my twitter feed for sources of distraction, but as I begin to read a juicy New Yorker column or obscure feminist blog, a sense of guilt envelopes me. This is not what I should be doing. Not here. Not now. And so seconds later I begin the horrid task of scrubbing down the bathroom– toilet bowl, shower head, and sink included.
Now I’m not entirely sure where that sense of urgency comes from– city living, a competitive work environment, a desire to feel and experience everything? But regardless it drives me to create check lists on Friday afternoon and stare proudly at the completed ones on Sunday evening. It propels me out of bed at ungodly hours on Saturday mornings, and it all but guarantees that the term “Lazy Sunday” need never be applied to me.
Which is all to say that when the little boy on the F train looked at my iPhone screen today, he saw the following: Monday Morning Tasks. And being an entirely uninhibited child, he remarked, “Lady, can you just enjoy Sunday and worry about Monday on Monday?”
And though I knew the answer was no, I decided to try an evening experiment, giving myself just one night off from all that’s left to be done. So taking a cue from the boy without a filter, I now raise my skim latte and say, here’s to living in the Sunday evening moment. L’Chaim!