Another best-laid plan defunct

{sigh} So the scheme to do a little market research and then race out to Tempe to meet my business partner got derailed last night.

I was thinking the real estate course’s final exam took place next week, during finals week. No. It’s tomorrow!

Forgot that these five-week short courses do not have dedicated final exam periods. I assumed we would meet next Tuesday for the exam. And of course, since I was figuring I’d have Friday, Saturday, half of Sunday, and Monday to read the three chapters I haven’t looked at and to figure out the math procedures that went over my head, I am SO not prepared. Not only that, but I’m only about 3/4 of the way through the page proofs that are due tomorrow morning—had figured to spend late afternoon and evening finishing that, since I’ll hit the road at 6:45 tomorrow morning.

So had to cancel everything for today and dedicate the entire day to reading page proofs and trying to catch up with the course material that I fell behind on while dealing with the toxic client. Shee-ut! That was not what I had in mind.

Fortunately, I scored a 96 on the mid-term. Asked the instructor if I would get a “C” in the course if I fail the final, which I fully expect to do. Did I really need to ask? This is a junior college, after all… He said not to worry, everyone in the class would get an A or a B, and that the final would have no meaning.

Why are we doing this? Why…why…? Because we have to sit in a classroom for 90 hours before we’re allowed to take a certification exam that could easily be passed by simply reading a 26-chapter book, about 80 percent of which consists of common sense and about 20 percent of which contains career-specific information that really does need to be learned?

So I figure I can prioritize the page proofs. Get that done by noon, maybe sooner—about 11 would be good. Bolt down some cheese and crackers for lunch. Then move on to trying to learn something about real estate; work on that into the night, until I can’t hold my head up anymore.

You know…the crazed thing about “retirement” is that the number of hours in the day seems to shrink. You never seem to have enough time to get through all the stuff you need or want to do. Mostly “need.” Rarely “want,” in my case, given the joy and pleasure I take in teaching and in reading the ramblings of demented wannabe writers.

And—here’s the weird part—the phenomenon is not exclusive to neurotic little moi. Almost everyone I know who is retired or semiretired says exactly the same thing. Most of those people manage time a great deal better than I do. SDXB, for example—no one is better organized than that guy, and on top of that he’s a freaking rocketship. He does so many things, every day, day in and day out, and he gets them all done between around 5 in the morning and 9 at night, when he goes to bed. But for him everything is quite orderly (he has, yes, a military mind). His schedule is not gestalt, the way mine is: he gets one thing done at a time.

Other, more normal folks, whose inclinations lie more centrally on the spectrum between gestalt and pristinely organized, report that after they quit their jobs they never seem to have enough hours in the day to do all the things they need or want to do. Maybe it’s a function of age. Or maybe it has to do with making a shift between the regimentation of work life and the naturally gestalt structure of freedom.

Whatever. I need to get back to work just now. Bye!

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