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Disce Pati


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1, 1, 2, 2, 3, 3...

1, 1, 2, 2, 3, 3, 4, 4…

And so it goes, up to 7.

I am counting cards, up to 7, in a game of ‘knock’ against my brother. It is the only game we know and play, the rest just don’t have the same significance. Perhaps it is the bonds formed over this game, or we are just not interested in cards enough to learn more than once game.

Beats playing ‘snap’, obviously.

I am writing about cards and how I count them as it came across me at the time how weird it was. Do all people count their cards out like that? Is that the normal way? How do others do it? I found it so odd that I wrote it down to myself; another of my various thoughts likely to be forgotten in the vapid recess of my phone.

But then I was cycling to work and was running (irony intended) through a load of things. One of them was procrastination. Ana sent me a link recently to a podcast, “The surprising habits of original thinkers | Adam Grant”, 25nd March. Is it such a surprising and original thought that you couldn’t use capitals, Adam? Are you really such a lazy arse?

Can you see the irony yet in my pondering: procrastination?

Anyway this guy was giving a Ted Talk (what are these?) on original thinkers and how they were in this Goldilocks region of procrastination. It was actually very interesting and insightful. How much of it can be taken as gospel, I have no idea. But the premise was actually quite cool: How do you manage procrastination to make it work for you? Do you pre-crastinate or do you procrastinate so much you achieve nothing? Martin Luther King Jnr apparently made up the four words ‘I Have A Dream’ on the spot, having written and re-written the rest of the speech right up until he was on stage.

I think it was summarized as knowing it’ll never be perfect unless you work right up until the moment, and never be afraid to change the formula until the crunch time. But great things need the most attention and consideration. Lasting resonance in the world is felt by people working hard, not just bumping through life with amazing things happening to them. People with good things have worked hard for them. It’s not luck, luck is an excuse for the most part used by those wanting to blame the universe. This isn't always true, but those situations are called tragedies.

Then this got me thinking about Ana. Our relationship is going through another upheaval at quite an early stage considering it was already in upheaval 9 months ago. But instead of losing our minds and just packing it all in at the first new hurdle, we are being very mature about it. Okay, we have had some wobbles, but for the most part we have been super adult about this.

With the decision fast approaching, we still don’t have an idea really what the ballpark will look like. But this is okay, the best decisions and the most original and successful people do not make the decision before it is final. They give it time; think about the impending task right up to the final moment. They make good decisions at their own pace, and never accept a final answer until it is time. It’s not over till it’s over, kid.

So instead of being annoyed at Ana, like I was at one point, I now see things more objectively. I’m no longer annoyed, I’ve returned to being in control of the situation, as I am calm and prepared to find good in every turn. I, that is to say, we, will not be defeated.

Now I say we take as long as it takes up until the deadline, the 31st, before we have an answer. Because any great thing could happen, or circumstance change. I could be stabbed by a French person tomorrow, and this may put us off France. Ana could be told they will buy us a house over there and provide me with a salary for no work required. Who knows? Aliens might land and we have to fight giant cookies. How big are our tiny problems then?

Simultaneously, as I rode to work, I was listening to Pink Floyd's 'The Division Bell'. Now this album is something else. The lovers of Pink know all about the 'The Wall' etc, but this shit has meaning due to this being the penultimate album, the second since Roger left. Not only is the premise poignantly about communication, something I think David is pining for with Roger, but David was the weird guy. He came late to the band, he dislodged Syd, he was the 2IC. Pink found enormous commercial success under Roger and his musings. To carry on the band and become the sole leader, this was big. And to stop the fans crying and whining he had to pull out a masterpiece sans the previous Big Cheese. The Grand Salami. The Epic Pickle.

So, this album, it's immense and it's sad and it's meaningful. But no longer are we questioning the outside, we are back to questioning what is going on inside. Fcuk to politics (intended btw).

The bigger message to take away is from his singing about communication. I was thus drawn to think about the stuff with Ana and I and remember how relevant it is to never stop talking to each other. There needs to be adequate comms, there needs to be a clear line of communication. We must always be talking to each other and asking questions. How terrible to be the embittered old biddies who just repeat the same shit at each other! It must wear you out hearing the same shit each day.

In summary, procrastination, so long as you are being thoughtful and successful with your time, isn’t a bad thing. It’s okay to put off action if, when you arrive at your deadline, you are totally prepared to smash it and leave the room with a mic drop.

Boss that shit, baby.

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