Wednesday, September 28, 2005

in fact, saying you are not a procrastinator is not enough, but you also must click your heels three times while you say it

Sunday night, when I was supposed to be working on my talk and the vaporpaper on which it is allegedly based, I found myself walking to the Harvard Coop* bookstore instead. While there, I spent some time reflect on the fact that I was walking around looking at books despite the fact that I knew that the books would still be here several days hence whereas the talk I was giving had to be done on Tuesday. Did this inspire me to leave the bookstore immediately to go work on it? No! It did inspire me, however, to buy a couple of books about procrastination.

I've now put a Post-It note on my monitor here in my apartment that says "YOU ARE NOT A PROCRASTINATOR." According to a tip in one of these books, if I just regularly pronounce this to myself, I will, in fact, stop procrastinating. Just like that! Proudly, I note that I have had the idea for this post ever since Sunday night but waited to write it until after my talk was over.**

Incidentally, in the Coop bookstore, the Self-Help section is right by the Engineering section. Which is as it should be in all bookstores, I think, since the former is a subset of the latter.

* Rhymes with "soup," btw.

** Proudly also, I have written this post sufficiently promptly after my talk that I am going to do that irritating thing where I post it in the evening but set the timestamp to 12:01am the next day.


Anonymous said...

Proudly, I note that I have had the idea for this post ever since Sunday night but waited to write it until after my talk was over.

--Can we rightfully conclude, then, that you procrastinated in writing this post?

-The Other K

Anonymous said...

You knew already that Coop was not pronounced Co-op, I hope.
But enough of that. How did the talk go?

shakha said...

So can I put up a note that says, "You are not fat" and eventually, I won't be fat?!? I wonder if this works for all kinds of things. "You are not single", "You are not depressed", "You are not going to get a bad job". I wonder what the bounds of this wonderful discovery really are; "You are not a man"?

jeremy said...

Other K: It's not procrastintion unless it is something you feel you ought to be doing. This blog is purely a luxury, so never that.

Anon: I did already know that, but readers might now. My talk went okay. I've certainly done worse but also had hoped to do better.

Shakha: Don't kill the goose that laid the golden-YOU-ARE-NOT-A-PROCRASTINATOR egg.