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Flour and Order

My office is clean. I can see my desk. I did my filing, even, so there are no unidentified flying papers lurking. It’s a little scary.

Now I can see, at a glance, what is going on. There are the books I need to read as background for my writing in one pile. There are the project notebooks in another pile. The writing manuals and publishing books (quite an impressive and depressing stack) loom next to the chair. I’ve sorted my other books to read by whether or not they are grown-up books; I have a lot more kid books awaiting me, which means it will be a fun summer.

Organization, however, has its own pitfalls. It is now abundantly clear that soon I will have to do a massive book reorganization to put away the shelf of books I read recently. I plan to procrastinate on this, since it will mean schlepping hundreds of pounds of books from shelf to shelf. And I’m also hoping that before I commit to book reorganization, I can relocate the kids’ picture books from their dad’s house on the theory that they’ve outgrown them, he never exactly grew into them (not from lack of maturity, but because they are books and he’d rather listen to records), and I want them.

Left to itself, the force of organization will compel me to stand next to the washer and say, “You know…” Or to look into my closet and think, “Hmmm…” Suddenly, bags and cans and boxes and cleaning supplies will fly into the air and the garbage cans will overflow and I will sink into the couch, afraid to touch anything lest I mar the perfection of order that surrounds me.

Fortunately, I have enough other things to do today to keep such disruptive events from wreaking their own particular havoc. I have to bake brownies for our picnic at the beach. In my world, flour and order are opposites.



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June 2012
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