So depending on which experts you talk to, today might, or might not be, Blue Monday. It is the third Monday of January and according to a part time tutor connected to Cardiff University and his fancy looking math equation, is considered to be the most depressing day of the year. Other mathematicians claim this is pseudoscience but keeping in line with a life long desire to avoid math at all costs, I have gathered my own collection of evidence.
2)The shine of the Christmas season has all fizzled out and the middle of January has nothing to offer in the name of celebrations.
3)The weather is gray and cold up here in the Northern Hemisphere and my immune system has finally lost the fight against the constant onslaught of germs that my children keep smuggling into the house since going back to school.
I’m curled up on the floor by the fire shivering and feeling miserable, desperately trying to call in sick to work. I had already slacked off for most of the day at my full time job as parent/housekeeper. I found a coworker willing to fill in at the job I actually get paid for. Now all I needed was for someone to cover my paper route.
Now why would a grown women have a paper route? The same reason she struggles with Grade 6 math homework, argues over the structure of a persuasive essay and involves herself in the dramatic social standings of a bunch of high school students. Because I am trying to teach my children independence but I am telling you, the effort required to NOT do their work, is equal to that of just doing it your damn self. Where is a part-time tutor and a fancy math equation when you need it?
The youngest Cractpot paper carrier had been procrastinating for at least an hour. My shift should have started half an hour earlier with gentle reminders and uplifting motivational speeches but I just wasn’t feeling it. All I could muster from the floor was step by step instructions.
Step 1) Get your boots on
10 minutes later he threw himself down on the floor beside me to complain that the lined insoles were wet. I reminded him that he should have put them over the vent last time he wore them (as reiterated every. single. time. we come in from outside) but he claimed he hadn’t worn them recently. After a quick calculation of the energy required to completely blow a gasket I decided instead to guide him through a memory exercise to mentally retrace his steps and determine how then they might have gotten wet. He arrived at the conclusion that his sister must have taken them, somehow squeezed her size 8 feet into his size 5 shoes and then hobbled around in the snow just to spite him. Obviously this must have occurred at around 2 in the morning due to the lack of witnesses. I moved to dismiss the charges but the defendant stubbornly submitted exhibit A. The aforementioned boots were shoved under my nose, because, interesting fact, wet boots smell weird. I told him to put the (physically bit my lip to stop from swearing) boots over the vent to dry (so that the distinct odour could permeate the entire house) and find the extra pair of boots I keep on hand for just such emergencies and return to Step 1.
10 minutes later he is explaining that he cannot find where he has put his extra pair of boots, most likely because he didn’t put them away properly last time he wore them. I save my breath because I’m sure his sister is probably to blame for that as well because what kind of master minded villain would sabotage a pair of boots without first taking care of the back up plan. Part of my duties include finding stuff (specializing in items that are behind and under things), so I pick myself up off the floor to conduct a search. After looking behind benches and under seats in the car I am no closer to finding the boots but I have matched up 3 pairs of mittens and located half a dozen missing socks. On a fluke I decided to look in the proper place and when I found them, I couldn’t help but wonder if Cractpot Junior even had any idea where the away place was, and I made a mental note to revisit housekeeping 101 with him just as soon as I was feeling better. I drop the boots onto his lap and crawl back to the warmth of the fire.
10 minutes later he’s back to clarify that the original boots weren’t actually that wet. I swear to you, I don’t care if his footwear spontaneously combusts at this point, just put them over the vent and get your @#%&! newspapers done. He then begins to angrily demand that I feel the shoes that I have already had to smell and determine their wetness on a 1-10 scale. I just want him to put on the extra pair of boots that I went to the trouble of finding rather than wasting any more time conducting experiments on insoles that I had zero desire to investigate in the first place, so I rather sharply yell at him to stop procrastinating and FOLLOW STEP 1.
He sullenly disappears down the hall, and , you guessed it, 10 minutes later I hear him trying to tip toe out the door. TIP TOEING in his stupid wet/not wet boots that we have wasted half an hour of our lives discussing that we will never get back. I am only a little ashamed to say that I spent Blue Monday wrangling a 10 year old boy to the ground, wrestling off his footwear and scrambling to the patio door to chuck them out into the snow.
I am now 100% sure they are wet.
I am also a horrible parent.
My only defense is that due to the fever and general weakness I feel that we were competing in the same weight class.
So, if you live in our neighbourhood and are waiting for your paper, all I can say is perhaps on Blue Monday, no news is good news, however if you’re desperate for something to read, feel free to come over and take a peak. Just don’t trip over the boots that are lying in the snow.
Procrastination is like masturbation. At first it feels good, but in the end you’re only screwing yourself. ~Author unknown