Friday, December 10, 2010

Unfinished Projects

We've got a lot of them here in my re-purposed Old Town rental property. I bought this little nest in 1989 and moved back into it after my marriage ended. I'm a do it yourselfer of average skill but that's not the challenge. 
ADD people can hang moulding and paint. But waning focus and energy, especially when the seduction of another "thing" comes along, makes us not the best project managers or task finishers. Fart noises and off-colour jokes though, remain our rapid synapse forte'. Keep that in mind as you consider the go/no go on inviting us to your holiday parties. 
Shut up. I’d rather read books. And until someone is present who demands that these little odds and ends be completed, I’ll still choose reading.
Non-work reading along with the reading I do to attend better to my soul and spirit (I loathe most self-help books) is crucial for my active mind. It girds me against burnout which one is prone to if your profession involves mind twisting subjects like healthcare economics.
My mind cleansing fun last night before bed (I usually read two paragraphs before falling into REM sleep) was a see-saw perusal of Hemingway in Paris, courtesy of A Moveable Feast and Scottie…The Daughter of… . It was interesting to gander snippets of Paris through different eyes but during similar times tinged with different circumstances of the attendees through whose eyes I walked Paris.
So WHO in their right mind would opt for picking up scattered clothing from my manic unpack-repack activity of last Sunday as I jettisoned my chattel from Portland/Santa Monica and readied myself for Jacksonville Florida? When you could take the journey through the books that I described above. And yes, things will be spic and span by this afternoon. I have a woman coming over. Her name is LFG and she wants a Christmas tree and one she shall have.
So I’m sure, at some point, these unfinished things will find their way to completion. But for now they don’t bother me and until they bother someone else who matters, I’m gonna read.
ADG, II Christmas Tree Procurer, Reader and Christmas Memory Builder.

Oh, and PS…LFG’s room continues to be a nice little work in progress.
She’s hosted a sleepover…made easy courtesy of the pull-out trundle.
And she’s vetting  the artwork that will adorn her walls this time. So far, the only oil on canvas to make her discerning cut is her own work.


Reggie Darling said...

I'm with you, time is much better spent not getting too caught up in endless, consuming household projects. But it is maddeningly difficult not to, I find, when one lives with a fancy interior decorator who will never be satisfied until perfection is achieved. And we all know where that leads . . .

Silk Regimental said...

So here's how it goes at our house:

Wife: Honey, when are you going to finishing painting the study?

Me: As soon as I'm finished with the other crap that you asked me to do!

Wife: We are having company, and it doesn't look good!

Me: If you want it done sooner, do it yourself!




Me: I'm in the garage getting the brushes!

Chuck Hatt said...

Dear ADG,

I have many a partially completed project at 1627 Cherokee Road. I like to think of them as patina. Also, I'd rather be considered bohemian than bourgeois. My goodness, you should see the shabby chic in the high dollar professor's ghetto, three blocks over. Enjoy the yuletide festivities with you lovely daughter.


Marianne said...

My husband is a successful biotech person, such as yourself, with ADD. His side of our bedroom looks just like yours...books and clothes in corners. I have learned to touch nothing and ignore after 15 years together. I was wondering if you can finish a book? My husband can only get to page 100 and then puts it back in the pile dispatched to ADD land. Oh and I hire really good lookin' handy men to finish all the odd projects. It suits me fine! I hope when you find that special someone again you encourage her to roll with it too. And write that check to the Brad Pitt look alike with a smile.

ADG said...

Marianne...YES, I can finish a book. But here's how it goes for me. I read five books at a time. And therefore, it takes me forever and ever to finish them. But I find it delightful quite frankly. And I learned, after reading Ned Hollowell's book ... Driven to Distraction...about a phenomenon called "ADD hyperfocus". I'd been doing it for years...especially in grad school. ADD people can muster micro-bursts/spurts of focus that are scarily efficacious...when neccesary...but they are brief.

ChuckHatter...Cherokee Road in my hometown has some rather schmaltzy digs on it. So does Cherokee Road in Birmingham.

SilkReggie...that's why I ain't got no wife no more.

ReggieDarlingtossity...Fenwick would have a field day in this joint! And yes, I've seen where "all of that leads" ... Happy Holidays.

Patsy said...

An on-call contractor is the key to a happy marriage.

Love the trundle, it looks cushy and comfy.

Main Line Sportsman said...

I have 2 words for you my friend...on the project topic: Hire someone!
On the book thing...I am also perpetually in the middle of 2 or 3 books....

CeceliaMc said...

If you haven't completed Christmas shopping for your daughter, I'd like to recommend two books that I have reread my entire life: Watership Down and The Secret Garden.

The Secret Garden is a particular favorite. There's one movie version of it that got right all the lushious sensuality of the story, as well as the mysticism. I can't remember which one that it was.

I loaded my daughter up on Alcott, Cather, Stratton-Porter, Austen, Montgomery, when she was a child.

I'm grateful that my grandmother forced them upon me.

She loved them more than all the modern stuff.

SouthernProletariat said...

I'm surprised that LFG has not strongly suggested that you finished those projects prior to her sleepovers.

And while I love my books, I find I must occasionally purge and donate to the local library. Otherwise I risk being buried alive, although the Kindle has helped with that...I'm guessing by the stacks and stacks you might need a tax deduction trip yourself..

And in keeping with Ms. CeceliaMc above, I saw another blogger that had posted the most lovely books like Secret Garden in beautiful cloth covered books. If I can recall who it was, I will email it to you...beautiful on inside and out.

CeceliaMc said...

I think you're talking about these, SP.

I saw them online about a year ago and considered starting a collection for any future grandchildren (please let me live till the day, God...)

I decided not bother because they're TOO lovely. I'd be afraid to read them.

Books are best when they've been around a block or two.

Anonymous said...

Secret Garden, Black Beauty, Elouise, Nancy Drew (because Nancy Drew never waited for a boy to get her out of trouble), Hitchcock for children. Then....Charles Addams. Gahan Wilson. Gary Larson. She's only 10. But not too early to develop a sick sense of humor. and then there are the old Batman comic books....

Give her a library of her own in her new room. Have a time when you two read together. Not aloud together, which is also nice, but silently together. This shouldn't be too much torture for a 10 year old, as her dad only reads for 15 minutes at a stretch. (j/k)

yoga teacher said...

Yes, Cecelia! My favorites. Plus "Green Mansions."

SR: Just change the conversation:

So here's how it goes at my house:

Me: YT, when are you going to finishing painting the back room?

Me: As soon as I'm finished with the other crap that you asked me to do!

Me: We are having company, and it doesn't look good!

Me: Let's just buy some more wine; they'll never notice!

(Works every time.)

Gretchen said...

As they say, ADD is a curse and a blessing...I've just recently realized Every. Dang. Man. I've. Dated. EVER. is off-the-charts ADD, and I love the craziness, the energy, the sociability, the impetuous, spur-of-the-moment brilliant idea that doesnt always pan out but hey, it sounded great. Were the bills paid on time? Erm, no. It did teach me to abandon perfection, and for that, I am eternally grateful to these men. Frustrating, it can be, but as an adult, you learn to pick your battles and decide what lessons really matter to you, and what you want your kids to see as your priorities. So ok, you can't finish projects. But LFG is learning that what really matters--being there for your family, taking life by the short hairs and being honest, to others and to yourself, is actually more important/meaningful/memorable than having an Elle Decor-ready abode and THAT, dear friend, is a much more important lesson than scheduling regular floor scrubbings and not messing up the living room. Moderation in all things. Including moderation. And btw? I covet your book collection...and my ADD youngest daughter covets LFG's room!!!

CeceliaMc said...

"Me: Let's just buy some more wine; they'll never notice!"

What the hell! Call off dinner. Keep all the wine. Drink it later with the Brad Pitt contractor...

SouthernProletariat said...

Penguin Classics! Yes, it was referenced at Anthropology (too frilly a store for me), but that is the same publisher.

And I'd encourage you go ahead and get them. There is no harm in having lovely things, and using them makes for a much more enjoyable life. The only crime is when we allow our belongings to own us, versus the other way around. If you get the books now, they can be well worn by the time grandchildren make thier appearance? I would imagine it would make for a lovely memory for your (yet unborn) grandchildren to read from beautiful books,snuggled in a chair with thier grandmother...

ilovelimegreen said...

Cecelia and Yoga Teacher - The Secret Garden - what a wonderful book. I remember the copy I had - with fabulous color illustrations by Garth Williams. And ADG, make sure LFG does read every Nancy Drew she can- vital to her becoming an independent young woman.
(I don't want to count how many times I've gotten distracted in trying to comment.)

CeceliaMc said...

SP, good advice. Maybe those book covers would inspire my daughter to get cracking on a number of fronts.

You never know. She once feigned an interest in selling Bibles, just to get some crab salad.

Anonymous said...

and don't forget Sir Arthur Conan Doyle!