Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Never mess with a writer's references

I have to share...

For months now, our office has been in a state of disarray.  With procrastination being both our worst traits, this room has always been messy.  I decided to try and tackle the "paper clutter" the other day, while Paul was at the rifle range.  
But before we begin, let's back up.
First and foremost, let me just say, the filing system we have in place is pretty straight forward.  Bills, statements, important info, etc, has a place in the filing cabinet and there is even a little bin on top labeled "To Be Filed".  Now, generally, (in my experience), things that go into a "to be filed" bin are to be filed; statements, bills, big receipts, etc.  Other paperwork should go into another pile, like "to be looked at"  or "to be read" in this case.  Now, family is always sending little snippets from magazines and newspaper articles for Paul and I to read; "how to stay safe in the sun", "the falling housing market", "12 easy workout tips you NEED to know", etc.  We love them all, don't get me wrong, it's just proving difficult to find time to read these as quickly as they come in.  And, Paul and I look at reading from two completely different points of view.  I see it as "having to read" and he sees it as "wanting to read".  OK, fast forward to Tuesday.
I sit down with this leaning tower of paperwork and start my descent.  Bills here, statements there, all the while trying to keep my husband's thought process at the front of my brain for decision making.  Throw away?  Shred?  File, keep out?  What to do, what to do.
Screw it.  That's what to do.  Ethan is going to be awake any minute and frankly I can't deal with a 2 year old walking on a semi organized mess on the floor.  So, I take action, I'm on fire.  I am so proud of myself that I get through all this stuff in less than an hour and I have made a lot of headway.  I've made separate stacks of important documents, with one big stack at the back containing "to shred" items.  
**Now, if you are a journalism major, or a writer, let me just stop you right here.  The following information may harm your emotional health.  Read at your own risk.**

Articles, Articles, Articles.  I think to myself, "Now, how is he possibly going to find time to read all these articles?"  He, himself, has even said, you can find anything on the internet these days, so get rid of the clutter.  So that is what I did.  I "freed" him from the stress of having to read all these articles and I threw them in a pile.  There was my first mistake.  I choose the shred pile.  Why?  I don't know, maybe I didn't feel like sorting through shred-able and non shred-able  junk, creating yet another sorting process.  So one big heap is where everything ended up.
Enter Ethan.  Quickly I hurry to get all the important documents off the floor and in there rightful homes in the filing cabinet.  Success.
Next step, Shred.  Done.
Vacuum, move some stuff around and now we have a clean, sparkling, relaxing, stress free office that doubles as a play room for the kiddos.
PHEW.  I feel great.

6:30 pm.  Enter Paul.
A- "Remember a few weeks ago when you cleaned the house and told me you got rid of stuff that I probably wouldn't even had noticed being gone?"
P- "yeah."
Proudly, "Well, I did the same for you, I cleaned the office today and got rid of a lot of stuff"
Hesitantly, "like what" (notice the lack of question mark)
"Junk mail, envelopes from Netflix, articles..."
meekly, but suspicious that this is yet another trick that ends up in "just kidding", I say, "yeah, why, it was just a bunch of stuff to read."
"That was important stuff, it took me months to find that, I'm using it for one of the books I'm writing, please tell me you didn't shred it!"
Now I'll stop there, because as you can imagine the dialogue did not go too smoothly after.
I tried to explain, he tried to explain, we both are upset with ourselves and each other at this point and it just isn't good.  Needless to say, he has many free tickets to do stupid stuff without me getting upset.  
We try, as wives of busy busy men that rarely have time for us, let alone the pesky little jobs of paperwork and organization, to help them out whenever we can by doing it for them.  But, now I know why Thomas Jefferson's wife died, maybe he killed her for trying to organize his reading material.


Anonymous said...

wait, now, I'm confused, which one of you is the writer??

usmcfamily04 said...

HILARIOUS! that is like when I threw away that whole bag of Jim's old boots--and then he needed them--OOPS!!!

Abbey said...

AGH! I was gonna mention it, but didn't know if he knew! LOL!