A Squaring Away Rounds a Corner

table legs with brass brackets and right angle screwdriver

A_Span's projects revolve around the principle of finding a place for her stuff...

We're planning to attempt our 4th annual near-century bike ride. It is close enough to a century ride for A_Span, despite the fact 100 miles will be divided over two days of riding. While A_Span is probably wrong about this, it seems like it could not possibly be more of a pain in the ass than what it felt like getting back into the car to return to the parcel after many hours of driving this past week. Every month since February has featured a road trip of some kind. The shortest was about 500 miles, and the longest almost 2,000. This one was about 1,000 miles, some of it on rain-slicked roads with, as flashing roadside signs warned, sharp curves.

A couple of hours into driving homewards at last, A_Span discovered that a notebook had been forgotten. This can be very dicey territory for A_Span, who can be particular about notebooks for specific subjects, even with accompanying requirements as to colour of the pen's ink for a given topic or approach. In fact, the words fussy and peculiar might well apply here (waves to classmates in bygone days). In this case, the notebook was of the electronic kind, and the discovery merited a half-hearted "oh, for the love of christ" before rapidly calculating that it would be possible to recover it in just a couple of weeks. If A_Span felt a need for this laptop in order to function, it would have been cause enough to turn around, retrieve it and thereby double the number of hours and miles driven that day. While A_Span may be wrong about this, she is certain that there was no way in hell she was going to do that.

Many things have been left behind in various places over the years. Sometimes it has been a royal pain of inconvenience, other times quite devastating, the difference not always being related in any way to the intrinsic value of the item. (If it had been the ATT_Span notebook, rife with plans, intentions, and reminders both vague and nagging, incomplete without its pink pen? A_Span shudders at the thought of ensuing paralysis until its return--how could anything be gotten done in its absence!) Occasionally, the very list of things to be done/packed is misplaced and time is spent searching for and/or recreating it instead of actually gathering one's wits about oneself and getting on with the tasks at hand. Some treasured items have been out and out lost. And countless things have also been unquestioningly carried along and carted about.

People with ADD are described by Thomas Brown (in his 2005 book, Attention deficit disorder: The unfocused mind in children and adults):

Though they may be very intelligent about other things, many seem clueless about how many tasks they can actually accomplish within a single day or week. Many create lists with thirty or more items for a single day or week, some of which are time consuming projects that no one could actually accomplish in a month.

It's a little discomfiting to be thus accurately nailed. Hello, my name is A_Span and I am exactly such a blockhead. It's not as searing now, however, as when A_Span first read it and was filling page after page with selections from Brown's book. A sampler notebook, of a sort, yeeess, specially designated for the purpose of practically copying out books by hand. That was on a flight to Dallas, a city A_Span has every intention of never returning to.

Comments are closed.