Thursday, November 26, 2009

Introductory Procrastination

Do you ever have those days when you do everything but the thing you're meant to be doing? I'm having one of those today, which is why I'm here blogging instead of, you know, doing the thing I'm meant to be doing.

It's not that I haven't given this thing a lot of thought. I have. I thought about it then started it, then thought about it some more then scrapped what I'd started, then re-started, then thought about the re-start and scrapped that too.

At one point this afternoon I had worked my procrastinatory thinking into an absurd circular argument, which didn't help with progress at all.

On the positive side, I've learnt over the years when to abandon something and go to bed. The abridged sequence is as follows:

1. Sigh regularly while sitting at the computer for several hours: type something, sigh, delete it, type something else, sigh, delete it, type something else, sigh, and et cetera.

2. Lie on the couch because you may have better luck thinking over there.

3. As soon as you realise lying on the couch makes no discernible difference to the quality of your thought (this usually takes two to three minutes), return to the computer and do something completely unrelated to the thing you're meant to be doing.

MCL, this seems like a perfect time to show you the piccy I came across in Frankie of that great cat-print suit:

I'm sure you would look totally hot in this and I vote you dedicate your next pay to the purchase of it (or else get work to pay for it; it's clearly an office essential).

4. Having done something completely unrelated to the thing you're meant to be doing, return to the thing you're meant to be doing and say out loud: "Screw this, I'm going to bed," then go to bed.

Works for me every time.


Mad Cat Lady said...

oh very nice - let me lose 20 kilos first and then I shall drap myself on office desk corners in it

the projectivist said...

i am planning for a whole day of doing stuff that is completely unrelated to the thing that i should be doing.

those are some of the best kinds of days going!

Crystal said...

While out shopping today I came across TWO 2010 diaries for procrastinators like yourself - survival guides for getting things done. One was specifically for CREATIVE procrastinators. (I think you would probably be very creative in your various methods of procrastinating.)
I nearly bought them both for myself, then selflessly thought of you Kettle. However, they are very US styled (Get organised for all the summer weddings in July, etc) so I didn't buy one.

Kettle said...

MCL I'll let you know if I see anyone wearing it in Sydders. I'll also report on the drapability factor.

Ms P, I think you're on the right track declaring, while it's still the morning, that you're deliberately and specifically going to do things unrelated to the thing you should be doing. I think my problem yesterday was that I dragged my procrastinatory guilt right through the day then into the evening, but never again!

And Crystal, a procrastinatory diary is an excellent idea; it'll give me somewhere to record all my procrastinatory activities; that way I can perfect them and do nothing but waste time. Brilliant! My Mum will be very pleased, I'm sure.

squib said...

Is the latest Frankie out? I have their posters all over our bedroom (sorry to harp on about posters again) and there's one by Ghostpatrol next to my side of the bed which features an elk sharing a milkshake with a kid (as in a child, not a goat)... anyway it always cheers me up. Is it because the kid is holding a dagger? I don't know

When I procrastinate, I tend to leave comments on blogs about posters of milkshake-drinking elks...

Mad Cat Lady said...

I've been trying to think of presents to send to 'the band' (ie. my favourite band - augie march) and I was thinking the other night that I should send Glenn Richards a diary for 2010 with pre-written entries, mentioning every day 'write new song' and perhaps even 'write new song about mad fans who like cats', but I'm not sure it's a good idea?

Kettle said...

Squib I think it's out in a couple of weeks. I subscribed a few issues ago so just dumbly wait for it to arrive in my PO box now.

Just quietly, I think you might have a thing for posters, but as long as you don't have a poster of J.D. Salinger it's all good (or at least tell me it's hanging in the toilet or the laundry rather than next to your bed).

And finally, if you were leaving comments on blogs today, what were you procrastinating about?

And dear MCL, as much as I understand where you're coming from, a diary with 'write new song' throughout has the tiniest smidgen of Stephen King and 'The Shining' about it ("All work and no play makes Glen..."). Maybe give them a book? Something about music and cats? Perhaps Eliot's 'Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats'? No?

[I have this book; it's very good.]

Anonymous said...


Kettle said...

Dear Anon, I take it you are also a lover of 'Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats'? That is most excellent! A fine book of poetry, covering many fundamental cat issues. I sometimes think 'The Waste Land' could have been improved with more cats, Jellicle or otherwise.

Senji said...

Problem is, the thing I am most often supposed to be doing is blogging. Funny how just about anything can become a chore when you feel you have to do it, no?

Kettle said...

Ah deary me, Ms Senji, you make me laugh very much. What an awful load to carry: all that delightful time on the computer, writing those whimsical pieces of yours, cracking a few gentle Senji funnies. It must be tough being you; I feel for you, I really do.

squib said...

what were you procrastinating about?


It's here you know. You think it's weeks away but IT IS HERE. It is COMING TO GET US ALL

Kettle said...

Oh God, Squib, I wasn't panicking BUT NOW I AM!

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

I find myself posting pictures of Tony Abbott in his bathers.

Kettle said...

Ramon I get the feeling doing slightly evil things to pictures of Tony Abbott is more of a favourite past-time of yours rather than a procrastinatory technique. And power to you, I say!

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

You know me too well, Kettle.