I apologize in advance if there is no focus or point to this post. My brain has been functioning on adrenaline, stress and caffeine the last couple days – it’s difficult for me to even think. Much less write. And of course, I must write. It’s my job and I’m on deadline.
But I’m trying to slow down. Trying to get my brain back to a normal level of productivity instead of spinning in frantic circles – like being on a possessed merry-go-round with an evil clown at the helm, cackling away with his less than perfectly smeared make-up.
I’ve been working on this special project for work. The city I cover at the newspaper is celebrating its 75th anniversary, and early in the year, I thought, “We should do a special section commemorating this anniversary! Great idea! We’ll have the history in there, old photos, stories from residents – it’ll be so great! Brilliant!”
And I can tell you, the section – all 56 pages of it – turned out fabulous. Truly, my staff, freelance writers and designer worked so hard to meet my expectations for this section (which were extremely high) and they put together a remarkable and beautiful tab. My sales rep sold the hell out of it and we actually made a profit on it. They are brilliant. I have incredible co-workers.
But the amount of stress to finalize the tab has been insane. I got the draft Tuesday – but you know, that was production day and I had a paper to get out (as well as a special sports section previewing all fall prep sports before the seasons start). I didn’t begin editing the tab until yesterday – and I worked on it all day. As much as I could anyways, because there were interruptions and other normal Wednesday tasks to perform. By 4:30 in the afternoon, I was fried. I left the office and went home with the idea that I’d get to the gym early and finish up the tab.
Well, I sat down instead. I sat down for an hour. If it weren’t for my Tough Mudder Teammate posting about going to the gym, I probably would have sat down in my chair all night. But I forced myself to go to the gym. And when I got home, I had to slow everything down in the only way I know how: Classical music.
I curled up in my chair with a plate of homemade eggplant lasagna (which wasn’t too bad for my first time making it), had Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings and Camille Saint-Saëns’ The Swan from the Carnival of the Animals (one of my all-time favorites), among others on the radio, and edited the special section until my eyes couldn’t read anymore – even with magnifier glasses on.
Today, I arrived at the office two hours early to finish up all the loose ends for the section, and continued to slow it down with Symphonie Fantastique (Hector Berlioz). I’m just about to head to out to meet with my designer for the section to put in final edits and send the tab to press. I cannot wait for that wave of relief to wash over me. Once that happens, I’ll get back to my normal radio stations and begin working on next week’s edition of the paper.
In the meantime, listen to The Swan and slow down a bit with me.