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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The wind stole my homework

I've never liked deadlines. 

Now that my freelance work has picked up, I've got deadlines up the ying-yang.  My most recent one demanded that I attend an event, write a story, and submit it in an hour and a half.  Talk about pressure! I thought my head might pop.

On the positive side, deadlines like that help me get the job done. They give me the kick in the pants I need to get energized.  Otherwise, I procrastinate.  It's too bad procrastination isn't a super-power because my sloth-like abilities could rival the strength of Superman.

My worst case of procrastination happened back in 4th grade.  I hated doing my math homework.  Ms. Clark used to makes us do too many long division problems. One, two, or three were never enough.

Oh, no.  She was never satisfied until we had done 20 or 30 each night.  It always felt like she assigned me a million.  Doing that putrid long division was torture, and I hated every second of it.  I'd put it off each night by making silent deals with myself.

They went something like this:

I'll do my homework after I watch my favorite cartoons. 

I'll do it right after dinner.

No, I'll do it right before I go to bed.

Hey, maybe if I wake up extra early, I can do it in the morning.

Yeah, right.

I once procrastinated so badly that I found myself doing my math problems during a morning recess.  It happened to be very windy that day, and when some kids on the playground distracted me, that wild air snatched the homework out of my hands and down into a nearby construction site.

Ms. Clark was plenty skeptical when I told her, "I don't have my homework because it blew away."

Thankfully several kids saw it happen and vouched for me.  That's the biggest memory I have of missing a deadline, and somehow it's sweet.

It's strange how some of our mistakes are far more memorable than our mundane successes.  I did that dreaded math homework for years for numerous teachers.

But none of those times is half as memorable as that one, wild occasion when the wind stole my homework. 

Maybe it hated math too.

1 comment:

  1. I have turned in a number of stories right before deadline-in fact I'm doing it right now.