Sunday, January 31, 2016

January 31: Worry Worries, Another Evaluation, Classic Saint Marty

Welcome to the start of my morning.  Yes, it is quite early (a little past eight o'clock).  I find myself with some unexpected time on my hands this a.m., which almost NEVER happens.  So, I decided to make constructive use of these first minutes of my day by doing my daily blog post.

It's going to be a busy day.  I have much to accomplish--grading and reading and lesson planning.  Above, I have to complete my annual evaluation document for the university.  I worked several hours on it last night, and I will complete and submit it this afternoon.  This year, I am asking for a promotion, so there's quite a bit of extra pressure to make this little 40-page book as good as I can.  After 23 years of teaching at this institution, I am hoping that I won't be turned down.

In a few minutes, I have to go pick up my kids from grandma's house to take them to church.  They will be grumpy.  My daughter will be sighing and rolling her eyes, probably.  My son will whine and stomp his feet.  That pretty much describes the whole process.  It's fairly predictable.  I'm not complaining.  I'm an adult who understands the importance of a spiritual component in a person's life.  My kids are 14 and 7.  They understand the importance of sleeping in and playing computer games.

Two years ago, I was pretty much doing the same thing that I'm doing today:  working on my annual evaluation.  Strange how things change and yet stay the same, year after year.  Evaluation worries.  Kid worries.  Money worries.  Car worries.  Worry worries. 

January 31, 2014:  Surprise Work, End of a Long Day, Fairy Tale Work

It's going to be a busy weekend.  My daughter's ballet recital is tomorrow night.  That means she has a two hour rehearsal this evening and a two hour rehearsal tomorrow afternoon.  Then the show in the evening.  I am basically going to be a shuttle service Friday and Saturday.  And I still have to do some house cleaning to make some money.

On top of all that, I received an e-mail this morning from the English Department.  I have to write a document for my annual evaluation, and it's due by 5 p.m. on Monday.  I'm going to have to get that done this evening.  It's my only free time in the next few days.  Surprise work.  I have a feeling that, by Sunday afternoon, I'm going to be one tired little saint.

When Charlotte gets to the Fair Grounds with Wilbur, she's tired.  The end is very near for her, and she knows it.  Wilbur has no idea his friend is nearing the final days of her life:

"I'm awfully sorry to hear that you're feeling poorly, Charlotte," he said.  "Perhaps if you spin a web and catch a couple of flies you'll feel better."

"Perhaps," she said, wearily.  "But I feel like the end of a long day."  Clinging upside down to the ceiling, she settled down for a nap, leaving Wilbur very much worried.

Charlotte goes with Wilbur to the Fair because she knows her work is not finished.  Even when she feels like the end of a long day, she still has to save her friend's life.  At the end of my life, I know I'm going to be exactly like Charlotte.  There's still going to be some task I need to complete.  One last thing to do.  Work never goes away.  It just goes undone.

Once upon a time, there lived an old farmhand named Lotta.  Lotta rose every day before the sun, labored all day in the barn and fields, and fell into bed long after the sun was on the other side of the world.  Lotta never took vacations, and the milk from her cows was known to be the best in the kingdom.

One day, Lotta died, and nobody was there to take over her chores.  The cows went unmilked.  The corn rotted on the stalks.  And the pigs died of starvation.

Moral of the story:  Farms are a whole Lotta work.

And Saint Marty lived happily ever after.

Who does give a damn?

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