Thursday, August 27, 2009

Organization is a Dirty Word!


I've come to the conclusion that I just have to live by the list. I despise lists. My step-father used to leave my mother lists of things for us kids to do while he was away at work -- things like picking up his cigarette butts that he threw on the lawn, weeding the rose garden until not a speck of green showed on the bare naked earth, picking up every single miniscule, minute, microscopic fiber of paper off the lawn, hand-plucking the grass from the edges of the sidewalk and curbing, endless hours of raking bare ground -- every single day of summer vacation, so he could see that we'd actually done something, that we hadn't wasted the summer away. If there was a single cigarette butt or an old looking rake mark on the dirt, he'd send us out without dinner and make us do the entire yard again. I'm sure as kids we did a piss poor job -- kids' eyes don't work like grown-up eyes, they don't see garbage on the grass, overgrown weeds or asymmetrical rake marks, they see a place to play, bushes to hide behind, fun to be had. At any rate, this is where my list loathing began. My husband is a list maker. When the kids were still all at home, he'd make lists for everything -- how to do the laundry, chores' lists and then lists that explained how the chores were to be completed, lists on how to wash dishes, in what order and how hot or cold the washing and rinsing water should be. He'd print his lists on the computer in the largest fonts he could find, ultimately wasting gallons of printer ink (which is why I hated his lists the most). Lists were everywhere -- posted over toilets, on bathroom mirrors, on bedroom doors, on the refrigerator, inside and out! To me, those types of lists are for one thing and one thing only -- control. They don't teach anybody anything except that perhaps the guy writing the list is too lazy to walk the steps out with you and show you how the work should be done, respecting your abilities to complete the tasks and giving you a little credit for the two brain cells you possess that may or may not bump into one another on occasion. I placed a ban on creating lists using the computer and since then, lists have become fewer and farther between. See? I wasn't kidding about that lazy part.

Anyway, I'm finding myself in need of a list. A different kind of list. One that reminds me which projects I have coming up, which ideas I should experiment with and explore, who in this business I need to have a sit-down with. I need to give myself deadlines. I need to be more organized. Ew.

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