1 October 2016
This is one of those days.
You know, those days when there is a clutter of interruptions that make production impossible. Each rotation back into a project is burdened with a bad attitude about the earlier interruption and an anticipation that another overtaking event is taking shape in the other room.
Eventually, I surrendered.
That is, realizing that any focus on work was going to be impossible, I gave up. I grabbed my iPhone and went looking for a podcast. I don’t listen to podcasts. I think I’d like a couple of them, but how the heck could I ever find time to sit back and listen to something when almost all of my time is otherwise spent reading stuff if not producing stuff? Indeed, there on my iPhone were gigabytes of subscribed podcasts that I’d selected at sometime in the past with an objective to decorate or improve my life now sitting there gobbling space. Like from 2014, many of them. Left swipe, delete. Left swipe, delete. Left swipe, delete.
I started up a couple of them. The Moth, of course. 99% Invisible. Criminal. HBR Ideacast. But again, egad! Who has time to even listen to the introductory music and commentary on these things? I don’t commute on a subway, so I have little time to put on the defensive white earbuds and settle back to listen to a couple of clever guys bantering with each other over a subway hour. My drive to work is only about 5 minutes so that audio is the morning news. I get up every day about 5:30 or 6:00 and don’t leave for work until about 8:30. Those hours are for reading, and doing the work that the later interruptions of work interrupt.
Mostly, though, I just don’t get the postures of podcast listening. Sitting attentively at the desk? Sitting back on the Eames lounger without falling asleep? With dangling white wires while I try to concentrate on not slicing off my fingers on the table saw while I restore the cottage up north? I just can’t find the still-body dwell that podcasting seems to require.
I had, in one of the earlier in-between-interruptions spaces, sought the productivity of reorganizing the gazillion apps on my iPhone. I just got a new 7 and the act of updating/syncing brought onto the device every app that I’d ever downloaded. Deleting the dogs and finding the ones that I thought might ever have some relevance, clustering them by type/function/purpose, and realigning the windows, I came across Audible. I have a Prime account with Amazon, and Audible has some “free” books with the account, so I thought I’d explore it.
So, rather than sitting in the Eames lounger with the dull posture of watching young kids scramble their brains by slamming their poundage into each other in Saturday college football games, I instead sat back to listen to somebody read The Plantagenets to me. This post is an interruption after chapter 5, with about 20 hours to go.