Wednesday, October 13, 2010

There Are Other Things I Probably Should Be Doing

I have a bill in my email that I need to pay. It's been sitting there for ten days. It's not a big bill, and paying it will take me all of ten seconds. I'll do it tomorrow.

I left a shoe at the Quality Inn in Lee, Massachusetts. I need to call them so they can mail me my shoe. This, I will also do tomorrow.

The cat still has, like, mange. I still need to call the vet. I will. Tomorrow.

It feels good, this tomorrow thing. Everything will get done, you see. I have a schedule, a plan. Some people might even call this responsible.

These people are probably putting things off, too. In the most recent New Yorker, there's an essay called Later: What does procrastination tell us about ourselves? It's a very long essay, and I can only guess the author had something else he really needed to be doing. It reviews some of the literature on the subject of procrastination, delving into Kantian ethics, game theory, and making excellent use of the word "dillydallying." In case you are checking the 'Pot to avoid writing, I will also mention that the essay tells us: "Victor Hugo would write naked and tell his valet to hide his clothes so that he’d be unable to go outside when he was supposed to be writing." This puts a new spin on Les Miserables.

Oh, and the link to this essay was sent to me by my critical thesis student. I will let this pass without comment.


  1. Looks like an interesting article. I saved the link. I'll look at it tomorrow.

  2. I definitely couldn't write while my valet was hiding my clothes!

  3. Author David Rakoff, in his new book of essays HALF EMPTY, uses a great word: procrasturbatory.
    So many, many things one can do in lieu of writing!