9/15/2017 11:25

Joys of Employment

There are times, few and infrequent, when I do miss the structure of being employed. Now that my weekends run from Wednesday through Tuesday of each week, it is seldom that I can interrupt puzzling about my priorities with the realization, or the excuse, "I can't deal with that right now; I have to go to work." I do miss that sometimes, especially when one possible priority facing me is the need to vacuum the house.

As I recall, once I would rush away from my house and domestic carnivores and hurriedly travel the 2 to 8 miles to the office, the task of careful ordering of my household priorities no longer occupied much of my attention. Instead, I was usually distracted by the need to properly scale the priorities of the tasks related to my job. So, instead of deciding whether dust and cat hair had accumulated to the point that cleaning was a necessity, I would ponder whether I'd be chastised for putting off writing a boring computer program which, once implemented, would generate boring and inaccurate output.

I said that I didn't miss work very much.

No, what I occasionally miss is that facile excuse that allowed me to avoid tasks I dislike. As long as I had to work to earn money, as long as the employer insisted on my physical presence in order to pay that money, then I could deceive myself into believing that it wasn't my decision to have a dirty house for yet another day.

Now I have to make an explicit decision about whether I dislike running the vacuum cleaner more than I dislike living with the level of uncleanliness that shoes and pets have so far achieved. (I've seen the results of cleaning, and I'm not against them. In fact I rather enjoy cleaner surroundings, all things being equal.)

In other words, I have to play the actual reality game myself.

In reality you always play your own game, but in some settings it is easier to delude yourself than others. When I was employed I used to choose, more often than now, to make the play someone else told me to make. Now I more often choose my own play. I can't say one method is always more effectives. Often enough I choose to make a play that in the past someone instructed me to make.

I'm pretty sure that I will choose to run that vacuum cleaner yet, maybe even today. But if I can recognize other choices with higher priorities, I will surely do them first.

I've already turned the compost pile and watched an old episode of "Third Rock From the Sun" but there are other important tasks that remain undone, such as sitting on the deck reading a book and eating lunch.

You know, as I think about it more, I really don't miss working.