Monday, August 25, 2014

Restless Pen Syndrome

In the months that followed Desert Storm I wandered streets of every town within an hour's train ride from my little town of Ansbach, Germany. Sometimes I ventured farther away, and sometimes I ventured further inside. That summer, the summer of 1991 was cool in central Europe. It was cool to me, anyway. I will not bring up my high school sweetheart other than she came to visit and we had fun until we didn't. I will not bring up the few weeks I worked at the neighborhood bar on weekend nights. I will not bring up all the friends, new and old who spent their valuable time with me. What I will bring up was what I carried on my person and why.

I tried to carry as much money as I could for a trip and a return. After all, I worked in a bar a few days a week, so I had cash. I carried my toothbrush and toothpaste. If it came to me spending the night away from home, as it happened occasionally, I had clean teeth. I once spent 24 hours in a small town on the German border because I kept missing the train. Occasionally, I carried a paperback. I had learned to enjoy reading during the war. What was most important, I carried a small notebook and pen.

Monday, August 18, 2014

A Brief Statement on Time Management, Part 2: My experiment and the Results

I had a funny feeling it would be a mistake. And like most mistakes, I just kept at it. I took the first 26 days in July 2014 and wrote down everything that I did and how long it took to do it. In short, I mapped my time.

I suppose all I really wanted to do is figure out where all my time really goes. And it goes. It goes and it goes and it goes. It had occurred to me that I had not been writing, not really been reading, always feeling behind, tired and angry. I felt like too much of my time was being wasted, if not accidentally by me, but by circumstances. Before I disclose my findings, I want to explain a few motivations.

Monday, August 11, 2014

A Brief Statement on Time Management, Part 1

I ask my son “Where does the time go?” and he replies, “Gone.” This is a conditioned response, but it's funny. He's two years old, his concept of time is astronomically different from mine. In the grand scheme of things, my concept of time has changed over the years too, this is probably a function of age, and of experience.

However, I do wonder sometimes: Where does the time go? I feel like I've always had a great deal of time, not too much, and always not quite enough. From time to time, when the conversation comes up about the writing of novels, people ask: where do you find the time?

Monday, August 4, 2014

Richard Duggan and “Summer Girl”

It was in a rather off hand sort of conspiratorial way that my buddy Richard made fun of the band Smash Mouth. Now, a pop band is a pop band, and I know that, but I like Smash Mouth. Apparently, people either really like, don't care for or hate Smash Mouth. And furthermore, I have been known to make fun of certain pop bands too, perhaps it's because I never cared for the music, the fans or the shear number of times I've had to listen to it. However, all of this is neither here nor there. I like the band Smash Mouth and at the time of the conversation, Richard was incredulous to say the least.