And thus was added one more item to the list of things I will never do.
Do universities still award degrees for life experience? Yes? Then label me MP -- master of procrastination -- and sign up for my night class in the fall.
Putting things off is usually harmless, like the pink scarf I've been knitting since December 2002. It's almost long enough now to wrap twice around my neck. I think this could be my year.
In a related crime, I failed to complete the fringe on one end of my favorite green wraparound. I've been wearing it this way for three years. Now I just call it my signature style of crochet: "Soft and unbalanced, just like me!"
My swelling household to-do list is more like a catalog of long-term goals: Patch wall, change light, hang pictures, paint something fun on the kitchen door. And vacuum, for chrissakes! You know it's time to clean when your dust bunnies start splitting off into gangs.
Three boxes of broken and unused backsplash tile have been rattling around the back of my car for close to a year now. All I need to do is find a damned dumpster and heave-ho. So close to a clean backseat... and yet so far away. There are doctors to see, friends to call, chores to do... I've become a consummate listmaker, rolling undone tasks from notepad to notepad as I cross off one item and add three more. It never ends.
For every published post on my blogger account there are a dozen unfinished essays and ruminations saved as drafts and waiting to be rediscovered, like so many half-stuffed teddy bears in a hastily abandoned toy factory. The situation at work isn't much better: My office... You know, I'm not even going to go there. Last week my boss came in, stepped on a pile of annual reports and asked me, "So, um, when are you planning to 'remodel' in here?" Hopefully before she fires me for my disorganizational skills.
The social implications of this behavioral pattern cannot be ignored: For years I've been planting seeds for relationships I've never allowed to grow. My entire love life is a garden sown but not reaped. I might dig up a carrot now and then -- more out of curiosity than desire -- but the bulk of the crop is unlikely to thrive.
According to the Tao of G.I. Joe, "Knowing is half the battle." Clearly I'm aware that this is more a problem than a quirk. And that it's really about anxiety, not laziness. And that, at least in the romantic vein, I can't get away with blaming a broken heart or my Paralyzing Fear of Commitment™ any longer. So recognizing all this I should be well on my way to a solution by now... right? But instead I've stopped trying at all.
In December I had grand plans to build a gingerbread house on the large dining room table I never use. Standing in the candy aisle at Safeway with a bag of Brach's Spearmint Leaves in my hand (they make excellent shrubs), I thought, "I'll probably lose interest in this halfway through, and then what'll I do with all that sugar going stale in my house?" Not a rhetorical question, actually; the answer was "I will eat it," and so the project was done before it started. Failure for fear of failure; talk about a self-fulfilling prophecy. At least I didn't eat the candy.
My ex-boyfriend is reading this and finally understanding why I never took to golfing: I was only interested in whacking the ball; the follow-through was of little interest to me.
Until I meet a man strong enough to break down walls, and find a job that pays handsomely for inspiration and not much else, I'll simply have to work on this. My new pet project: "Stop Procrastinating in 2006!"
Now where's that pad of paper... I need to add this to my list.