Saturday, August 3, 2013


Okay, here I am on Saturday night, writing at this point for no real reason other than I've posted something eleven days in a row and having gotten this far I don't want to break the string. It's actually not a bad reason, and highlights the importance of establishing a regular working rhythm, even when it may not be immediately clear what the nature of the work will turn out to be. I am actually less interested at this point in what it turns out to be on any particular occasion than in setting in place a set of rhythms, behaviors, and habits that will foster the production of work of some kind getting done; my grounding assumption is that if I keep at it from time to time something surprising and interesting will show up. That's proven to be true in the past.

It's not unlike going on a diet, another set of behaviors and habits I'm attempting, after some gentle chastisement from Dr. Houk last week, to adopt. If I diet today and binge tomorrow, I'm not gonna lose weight, or even maintain the weight I carry now. I have to establish a set of parameters and stick it for as long as is necessary, which may turn out to be the entire rest of my life. Another truth, inconvenient thought it may be, proven true from my own experience. The operative question becomes, do I have the self-discipline needed to stick with it? Am I that kind of person? Well, sure I am. Except, of course, when I'm not.

So there's the writing regimen, the eating regimen, the exercise regimen, the art regimen (currently suspended), the work regimen, the prayer regimen, the sleep regimen. And then there's the likelihood that somewhere along the line all this regimentation is not going to sit well with that other part of my brain that resists robotization, that wants to break out once a while, that wonders, in the midst of all the earnestness and self-discipline and willed productivity, the fun is. I'm writing, but hey, I'm on vacation. I'm dieting, but hey, what's one cookie, more or less, going to matter? I need to sleep regular hours, but there's a poker game tomorrow night. If you want to play, you have to pay. Those are the rules.

So consider this my Letter from the Land of Dutifulness. Today I've walked, I've eaten in moderation, I've written. I haven't fallen off the wagon. Yet. Tomorrow is another day.

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