Errands, Balance, and Ergonomics

3 October 2002

I'm a day off again. Yesterday I kept wanting it to be Thursday. I kept thinking, oh, shoot, I forgot to e-mail Mark's grandpa for his birthday. But I didn't. I remembered before lunch, even. And now I keep thinking it's Friday, and it's going to be a rude awakening when Mark doesn't get home until late tonight, and then goes in to work again tomorrow.

Mark got home on time yesterday, so I don't know how I could have thought it was Thursday. We had Yucatan chicken and peach-avocado salsa and nice spice rice and slices of cantelope, and I had almost angelsuppa for dessert. It was good, good, good. (The Yucatan chicken is marinated in o.j. and lime juice and garlic and oregano. Yum. The nice spice rice is Timprov's own concoction of turmeric and a dozen other less yellow things. Angelsuppa is cloudberry preserves and cream. I had my cloudberry preserves with ice cream instead. And chocolate chips.) I also made myself CocoWheats yesterday to be eaten for this morning's breakfast, and I precooked the chicken so I can make Grandma's curry hotdish. I contemplated making blueberry muffins or Grandma Gritter's cinnamon bread, but by the time I thought of it, the kitchen already smelled like Yucatan chicken, and I didn't really want that to go away. Maybe this afternoon.

So. There are errands and errands. My current puzzle is whether I can get them all done before I need lunch. The parameters are as follows: Mark needs the bathroom until 9ish, getting ready for work. The library opens at 11. I need to go to Kinko's, the library, Target, the post office, and the grocery store. My grocery store list includes stuff that needs to be refrigerated, so I have to either go there last or go there and come home before going somewhere else. I wish the Target near us was open already. That would simplify things immensely.

Fascinating, I know. The thing is, I haven't been working particularly well in the mornings. I think of myself as a morning person, and I've been awake and alert and ready to go in the mornings. It's just that I've been starting out quite slowly where writing is concerned. And I'm not sure if it's that I'm needing to have the time to start slowly, or if I'm just needing to work in the afternoons and evenings more. So I'm going to try errands and non-writing stuff this morning (even though some of it is writing-related) and see how I work in the afternoon.

So our Twinkies lost yesterday (where by "lost" I mean "got their butts whumped"), but that's all right, they're going home to the Dome. (Yay for the Pimple!) And the Giants won, and the Not The Yankees -- I mean, the Angels -- won, too, so it could have been worse. I'm not a true baseball fan. I don't care if anything is one for the record books. I don't really care about the all-time anything, either. I just care whether the team I like wins or loses, and whether they play well or poorly. How other people have played in other games is not my concern.

I finished reading Margaret and I yesterday and got through most of Gwen Kinkead's Chinatown. And I discovered that it's a good idea for me to list what I've done at the end of a day. It helps me to see that I really have gotten somewhere and done some things. I finished on two of Ansa's scenes in the Not The Moose Book -- for the first section, I have two point-of-view characters, Edward and Ansa. And at the beginning, most of what Edward is doing is fairly mental -- er, that's not in a "dude, he was just mental!" sense. He's got a lot of stuff to figure out. So in addition to trying to find active ways to portray that, I'm trying to keep Ansa's scenes fairly active as well. I think I did a fairly good job of that yesterday.

And, frankly, Ansa doesn't reconsider a lot of her positions until Part 1 is almost done. She doesn't feel the need to think a lot about them. She knows what's right and does it, and if other people disagree, well, they're wrong. She can be convinced to change her mind on practical considerations at the beginning of Part 1, but she's fairly ideologically "pure." Combine that with an impatient temperament, a strong gift for magic, and a socially fairly awful situation: her entire region has been annexed by Soviet Russia, and her people are scattered throughout Finland. (She's my major Karelian character.) And all of Finland is more or less starving to pay off the war reparations to the Soviets. Trying to plow completely rocky, half-frozen soil. Eating bread made from tree bark. Everybody sing! So Ansa has, shall we say, plenty to do. Sometimes it's a matter of deciding which things she's going to choose to do, out of the many that would suit her purposes or meet her goals.

I like Ansa. I get frustrated with characters who hem and haw and whine about not knowing what to dooooooo. She may be wrong, but she's not going to sit on her butt.

But I am. Seriously. This is something I'm working on, because I've been curling my legs up under me to work more and more often, and it's not good for me. It's no good for my back or my hips. The only advantages are that it feels cozier and is more likely to keep my feet warm. And the solution to the latter is to buy more SmartWool, not to mess up my back.

And now Timprov is all disappointed, because he's been trying to get me to relax more, and then I declare I'm going to sit on my butt, only to mean it literally. Sorry. I'll try to relax, too. Really.

But not until after I've figured out this errand thing. Hmmmm. Decisions, decisions.

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