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Diary of a Day Off

Diary of a Day Off

Erik Deckers
Laughing Stalk syndicate
Copyright 2010

I took my first vacation in a couple years. I've been working like crazy on my new business, and an 8 hour day feels like a day off. This was one of the first times I wasn't going to work at all, and my wife was determined that I wouldn't do any work. So I decided to keep track of what happened instead.

2:00 am - Just because I'm taking tomorrow off doesn't mean I need to keep working. Time for bed.

7:00 am - Wake up out of habit. Smile because I don't have to get up, roll over and go back to sleep.

7:10 - Can't go back to sleep. Keep thinking about the projects I have to do next week. Keep worrying about details that I should take care of this week. Finally drift off to sleep.

8:30 - Wake up again. Smile again because I've already spent 90 minutes doing nothing. I love having a day off. Try to go back to sleep again.

8:40 - Projects and worries keep poking and prodding my brain. Finally drift off to sleep.

9:15 - Dammit!

9:30 - Finally get out of bed. If I'm going to waste the day away, I'd rather do it in front of the television, so I can take my mind off work.

9:35 - Sit down to a nice, leisurely breakfast. Don't have to rush out the door today, so I can take my time and enjoy it.

9:42 - Finished breakfast quickly, out of habit. I really need to start allowing myself more time in the mornings.

9:55 - It won't hurt to look at my email just a little bit. We're going out of town for the day, so I should just make sure nothing important is sitting in my inbox.

9:56 - My wife told me to stay off the computer. Told her there could be something important that needed my attention. She wasn't buying it. Luckily, I had already seen there was nothing important.

10:00 - The shower was ice cold this morning. That's what I get for being the last out of five people. Maybe getting up earlier isn't so bad.

10:15 - Another quick email check. My friend Dick wants to have lunch next week. Fired back a quick response. That's not work, that's making plans to relax.

10:25 - Prove to my wife that I'm not doing any work. I'm just emailing with Dick.

10:35 - Man, daytime TV sucks.

10:36 - Nothing important in my inbox. What's going on?

10:37 - Quickly switch over to the online comics pages when my wife demands to know why I'm on my computer again. Show her that I'm just saving some trees by reading the funnies online.

10:38 - Try to answer a few emails.

10:39 - Comics page.

10:40 - Try to ans—

10:40:01 - Comics page.

10:45 - Finally give up trying to answer emails, since my wife won't leave my office. She says she's "cleaning," but she's dusted that spot on my desk for five minutes now.

11:00 - Leave for Nashville, Indiana. It's only about an hour away. Good thing I charged my Droid before we left. However I have to drive, so I can't check anything. This inactivity is excruciating.

12:15 pm - Arrive in Nashville, walk around and look at the shops. Try to sneak a look at the Droid, but my youngest daughter keeps telling on me.

12:30 - Stop at the bathroom. Luckily, my Droid gets a signal in there. Nothing but unimportant emails, invitations to seminars, and notes from friends. Either everything is running fine without me, or my family has somehow threatened my clients.

1:30 - My partner calls. I'm about to answer, but the stony glares I get from the rest of the family, plus a few passers-by, stops me. I let it go to voice mail.

2:10 - Hooray, a real email from my partner. Something I can work on, despite my family's protests. This truly is important, I say. It'll only take a couple minutes. I send a couple emails to fix the problem, and I can finally begin to relax.

8:55 - Arrive home. We put the kids to bed, and I tell my wife I have to write my column.

9:15 - Time to start writing. But first to check my emails.

12:30 am - Just because I'm taking tomorrow off doesn't mean I need to keep working. I'd better write my column and go to bed.

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  1. Oh, this is so funny and so typical of any day I have off! Who says "playing" on the computer is working? For me, it's a day off "work" and a day with "connecting"!
    Lindsey Petersen

  2. Hi Lindsey, thanks for visiting. I'm with you, I don't see my work as "work," because I enjoy what I do immensely. However, it is nice to have a day where I don't have to do that.

    I do have to admit, I exaggerated this quite a bit. I didn't keep checking my email, and my wife is more than understanding about my need to stay informed.


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