Late last night I submitted a conference paper and a magazine article, both of which so happened to share a deadline. It seems that no matter how much or little work is left to be done on a paper, I inevitably end up dropping everything in the last 3-4 days and focusing on that paper exclusively and STILL I submit the final version 30-60 minutes before the deadline. Just because the main ideas in the paper are typed up does not mean the paper is done. The “little” things seem to always take forever.
I walked home in the freezing cold, under-dressed for the occasion. There is a soul-cleansing silence to that 1am Friday walk after a paper has been submitted. My brain, while exhausted, was rumbling with ideas, future possibilities, and the exciting notion that I could go to sleep if I wished. I had a smile on my face and half-enjoyed a quick exchange of barely-middle-school-level humor with the seven eleven clerks. I bought a granny smith apple, the best of the bunch they had, but clearly the winter has taken its toll on the seven eleven supply of non-pizza-or-hotdog-related food.
Monday I am driving to Maryland to give a presentation, which means that the weekend will not see the kind of sleep I was hoping for all week. I turned off Facebook and aside from writing this blog entry over coffee and oatmeal in the morning, will attempt to the best of my abilities to spend the next two days preparing for the presentation.
When I’m single (like now), there is a kind of freedom to a week full of exciting and challenging work. It’s only on the cold 1am walks home that I briefly ponder the passing of time and that life for everyone (except me of course) seems to be a finite thing.
Note: the picture of the “buzzin bee” is thanks to Randy Otter.