did someone muck with the backend here

Re: Aging and flakiness

1

You'd better that tattooist sorted pronto.


Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 7:29 AM
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It's hard to sort tattooists. If you go by height, the shorter ones get mad. If you go by age, they get all offended when you ask to see ID.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 7:31 AM
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You sort by percentage of inked skin. Duh.


Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 7:33 AM
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I'm getting worse about random forgetfulness. One trivial but very net-positive trick for dealing with forgetting things in the morning that fall outside of my normal routine (think mailing something or taking something that doesn't normally go with you to work), I put whatever it is on/by my shoes.

A related mental decline that has been annoying me is muscle-memory. This is hard to describe, but an example is that after changing the dish rack by the kitchen sink (it is longer than the old one and has a second deck for cups on the opposite side), I keep almost dropping cups on other dishes, because I'm trying to place them where they used to go. Disturbingly, I'm capable of berating myself about doing this *while doing it again*.


Posted by: Grumbles | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 7:39 AM
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If you're the type of person who forgets that you're boiling water, don't go outside to play baseball with your kid after putting water on to boil.

How large is the set of people who can't remember they are boiling water but who can remember they are the sort of person who can't remember they are boiling water?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 7:40 AM
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What I sing to myself as I'm walking out the door:
"Keys, wallet, badge and phone.
Keys, wallet, badge and phone.
Let's commute to work from home!
Keys, wallet, badge and phone."


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 7:43 AM
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This is hilarious- right after I posted this, the department secretary gently asked if I was intentionally skipping the faculty meeting or just forgot, since she knows that I've struggled with this before.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 7:47 AM
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We've all struggled with not giving a rat's ass about our colleagues.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 7:48 AM
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Here's the comment I was mid-composing, pre-meeting: I realized last night I'd never deposited a check I was supposed to receive from my parents, had no idea if they'd sent it and I'd lost it or if they'd never sent it, or what. I checked the edge of a catch-all bin where I'd perhaps stick a loose check, and voila, there it was. Incredibly satisfying feeling. Once I found it, I vaguely remembered trying to deposit it, discovering the bank app on my phone needed updating, and then losing track of what I was doing after the app updated.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:15 AM
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I don't even have a bank app on my phone.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:19 AM
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Or a parent able to write a check.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:22 AM
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We don't even have a viola. We do have two violins, one for small children.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:24 AM
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Nobody plays the violin. We just keep them in case a visitor has never even seen one.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:26 AM
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In the morning there was a big wind blowing and the waves were running high up on the Mon and Moby was awake a long time before he remembered that he didn't have a viola.


Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:33 AM
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There's one on Craigslist, but they want $1,700 for it.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:35 AM
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15 is why Hemingway got a Nobel and you didn't.


Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:38 AM
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14 is excellent. (worth the time to google). (just wanted to make it clear that I'm not just bragging that I got the reference, because I didn't.)


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:38 AM
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The lack of a viola is why he doesn't have a $1700 check from his parents.


Posted by: Grumbles | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:39 AM
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16: He had a viola?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:43 AM
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Can Hemingway write about a viola so expensive that even Hem can't afford it?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:45 AM
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Well, that does it. I'm ordering a viola.


Posted by: Phillip Roth | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:49 AM
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20 is my way of saying that I am still laughing about whether God can create a microwave burrito so nutritionally deficient that He gives Himself scurvy.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 9:06 AM
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Forgetting the word for a concept, or the name of a person, is happening to me more often.

Memory is a lot more interesting than it used to be.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 10:56 AM
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I recently got The Heiress on DVD and was surprised to see in my record that I had apparently gotten it in 2016. I surmise that I gave it a try and found the first 15 minutes incomprehensible.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 11:07 AM
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23.1: Same.

In general I'm still able to maintain a pretty sprawling mental framework--where things are, what needs to be done*, some arcane bit of info I recently looked up--so the brief wordlessness is the only real manifestation of mental aging so far. OTOH, last week I apparently served a fried egg out of a pan, put it back on the stove, then re-lit the stove and walked upstairs to eat breakfast. About 10 minutes later I could smell the smoke. WTF was that about?

*oh hey, I should put the beans on for tonight's dinner


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 11:13 AM
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Honestly, I've always been so out of it and incompetent that I haven't really noticed anything aging-related. I feel like if you keep your baseline low it's hard to get worse unless you actually have dementia or something.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 11:15 AM
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6 is great. As it happens, just this morning I left the house without pens and wallet (I was more rushed than usual, and just lost track; this is pretty damn rare for me). Fortunately, the bakery has Apple Pay. Unfortunately, the Co-op has it, but it's incredibly unreliable, I ended up calling AB and having her pay via credit card over the phone. Modern life!


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 11:16 AM
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26: When I read 4.1, I thought that when I do these things, it feels more like I'm finally getting my shit together rather than compensating for declining capacity. I've never been a to-do list person, but I've also never been perfect at remembering all the things that should go on to-do lists. Good enough, but not perfect.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 11:17 AM
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That's what surgeons used to say before malpractice insurers got tired of paying out on dead-because-where'd-that-sponge-go claims.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 11:26 AM
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I am and always have been absent-minded to the point of disfunction but one result of this is a rather elaborate set of tricks for getting myself up and out of the house in the morning and there's a kind of pleasure in figuring out how to trick yourself like that. I've got nearly the whole routine rigged a la methods like in 4.1 but my downfall still is leaving my lunch behind.

So, so many carefully prepared and anticipated tasty lunches, left to sweat and moulder on the kitchen counter, inevitably remembered with bitter regret only after I'm well on my way.


Posted by: Swope FM | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 11:32 AM
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Instead of singing a song like 6, when I lock my door in the morning, I try to remember to say "It's [day of the week] and I'm locking the door." If I forget, I'll be paranoid that my memory of locking the door was actually from a previous day and run back to test it. I've never actually failed to lock the door.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 11:35 AM
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but I've also never been perfect at remembering all the things that should go on to-do lists. Good enough, but not perfect.

This belies an egregious misunderstanding of how a to-do list is created! It's a basket to catch those flitting thoughts that pass every few hours and get forgotten before getting done. I can't think of any situation in which I could both sit down and create a to-do list on the spot yet would also need a to-do list.

No, that's not true. I suppose I do exactly that when I know I'm going to be harried and not thinking properly. Carry on!


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 11:51 AM
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33

Don't talk to me like I'm your wayward son.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 12:17 PM
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33: Carry on


Posted by: Kansas | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 12:23 PM
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There's no Omaha-based Kansas cover band called "The Kansas-Nebraska Act," and the world is a poorer place for that lack.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 12:31 PM
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34: Don't you cry no more, but discussions about Kobach go in the other thread.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 12:31 PM
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37

32 is very "Getting Things Done"-style.

The problem I always have with to-do lists is I'm not in the habit of looking at them. I have dozens if not hundreds of pieces of paper around my house and files on my computer labeled "TODO", mostly that have been written but never looked at again.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 1:47 PM
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38

37: I have only one list at a time. It consists of a page in my notebook. When the page becomes full, I transcribe everything on it that isn't crossed out on to a fresh page, and destroy the old page. The way to madness is having multiple to-do lists; mine has everything on it, from "read tech manuscript" to "arrange dentist appointment" to "write short story about sentient fire hydrant".


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 1:57 PM
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39

I recently was sedated for a minor medical procedure, and so had half-an-hour or so of lost time. I was weirdly nervous about not knowing what I would talk about. But for the first half-an-hour after I was fully recovered I essentially just repeated everything I'd said during the half-an-hour I didn't remember. So that was oddly comforting.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 2:10 PM
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37: Agreed, that's the ideal GTD zen state.

I've been using Remember the Milk for recurring tasks and it's helped a lot, especially for ones on longer than daily intervals. It's very GTDish, but I mostly just use it as a smarter-than-average todo list.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 2:16 PM
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re: 38

That's kind of how I work, too. Except I also have multiple other To Do lists being thrown at me from Github, Trello, Jira, Slack, etc. But my own list, that I write by hand, daily, is the one that actually helps me organise my thinking.

I have a very good memory, and generally, I'm also very good at multi-tasking and keeping a lot of balls in the air at once. I'll remember the details of multiple projects and the specifics of individual tasks often better than the people whose job it is just to worry about that one thing.

But, there's a certain point when the sheer workload and stress level* flips me past a certain tipping point, and then my performance just falls off a cliff -- memory, indecision, the lot --and that's where the system (which is just a scribbled list on paper, not some formalised thing) is key.

I also take a huge amount of handwritten notes all the time -- and am very fussy about pens/paper. I rarely refer back to them, but making those notes is part of the process of baking them into my medium term memory.

My wife,* on the other hand, remembers nothing. To the point that she had to reset her phone yesterday, and the only passwords she has available to her are the ones _I_ remember for her (or have stored somewhere because I heard them one time and knew she'd forget them).

* who is very smart and organised at work, mind you.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 2:23 PM
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42

"write short story about sentient fire hydrant"

I just abbreviate WSSAS**** in my calendar.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 2:33 PM
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43

Ttam is Jammies.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 3:37 PM
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44

Making an entry in a todo list is enough for my brain to consider a task complete.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 5:10 PM
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44: Yeah, I've had that experience too; where I hit the level of deciding something is important enough to write down, but consider the act of writing it down sufficient to complete the requirements.

I began bullet journaling last year and have found it helpful. Fortunately, I don't have to drag it many places... but that means I'm not in the habit of grabbing it consistently. It's a great technique for solving work and home tasks, since they're organized from my desk.


Posted by: Mooseking | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 5:43 PM
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You all except ttaM are making me feel better. This year I started seeing a counsellor who specializes in ADD (and Asperger's). Mostly it's making me feel better about having all these workarounds (induction burner with automatic shutoff instead of a stove, setting timers constantly.) I don't know if I even believe in ADD but I know other people seem to be able to manage in a way I can't. GTD was a great help. I have one to do list, named for the month, synced across platforms. Twice a month I email it to myself and at the end of the month I rename it. I keep a list of completed items, partly for encouragement, partly so I don't do the same thing three times.


Posted by: Penny | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:06 PM
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Our stove makes a little click noise when the burner turns on, so that's how I know when I leave it on.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:11 PM
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Anyway, I'm terrified of little lapses in memory. I don't even want to know how much of the risk of Alzheimer's is genetic. In retrospect, I think my mom was bluffing her way through the symptoms for a good couple of years before somebody noticed (I have more attentive family members) and made her go to a doctor. I think it will take much longer for anybody to notice if I have the same problems. They'll think I was making a joke they didn't get or that I'm just drunk or deliberately ignoring them.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 8:22 PM
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In my early twenties I bought a dinky viola for $100 on eBay thinking I'd learn to play. Fifteen years on, it's made three or four household moves with us, I never learned to play it and I suppose I never will, unless the age of losing muscle memory for the dishes can somehow be transformed into the age of new muscle memory for Bartók.


Posted by: lourdes kayak | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 9:21 PM
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||
Lourdes: some time ago either you or Lurid asked for books about Chinese art history. This on civil service exams might be of interest. No page-turner, but worth skimming at least, for education, literary style, the economy of scholarship.
|>


Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 9:25 PM
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That was me - thank you!!


Posted by: lourdes kayak | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 9:52 PM
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You're welcome!


Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 03-20-18 10:09 PM
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re: 41

Not to imply I never forget things, or never do a rubbish job of some of the things I have to do. But, I do OK considering the sheer volume of stuff I have going on.*

[This isn't humble-bragging that follows]

One of the big self-realisations that has come through parenthood, is that I've realised I'm not really very lazy. I used to have a self-image of myself as someone who was a terrible procrastinator, and profoundly lazy. I've realised that while procrastination is still something of an issue, when I look back at my life history -- undergrad, graduate school, work, etc. -- I've basically always worked my arse off, because I've basically always had to.** And adding parenthood on top of that, means that there just isn't the choice to procrastinate or put off a lot of things. Nor is there a choice to just muddle through. It's keep my shit together, or it all collapses in a fiery wreck.

There is a non-zero chance of fiery wreck, though. Esp. at work.

* overwork has been a constant issue since changing jobs.

** e.g. having to work multiple paid jobs to fund myself through studying, while carrying a full studying and teaching workload.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 12:58 AM
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I used to use Wunderlist for groceries, but Microsoft is going to shut that down once their To Do app is ready, so I've been experimenting with ToDoist.

It's supposed to be able to remind you to do something based on where you are when you use the paid version.

What I really want is to be able to be in my kitchen and say out loud what I need and have that captured. I think that my Amazon speaker thing Alexa can probably go that (a Christmas gift) but i'm Nervous about Amazon collecting all those data.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 3:28 AM
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I am perpetually frantically, furiously busy at work, and worse, have to follow up multiple times for other people to do their jobs. (Most recent: IT needs to reestablish a secure external network connectionfor remote technical support. I have been asking since beginning of February. I e-mail every two weeks to ask about status.) I also have tons of follow up after service visits (order widgets X, Y, and Z, test performance of A and tune B in three weeks). I have ONE list, because my poor brain cannot handle compartmentalization. My calendar is also key for not fucking things up too badly. I set reminders to follow up on a given day after a reasonable waiting period, long enough for the person to do my thing, but also long enough for me to forget I asked until I go to use the thing and it's still broken. I also tell people to follow up with me after a certain time and send me calendar invitations to make sure I do their thing promptly.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 4:01 AM
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4.1: My mother was forgetful before she got sick and used a similar strategy. Back when Mom was just a little demented, my aunt asked her to bring extra butter for Thanksgiving dinner. She put it in her shoe so she wouldn't forget it, then wore a different pair of shoes, leaving the butter behind, nestled in the shoes she wasn't wearing. "Shoe butter" briefly became a family shorthand for when workarounds fail.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 4:07 AM
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re: 55.1

In my previous job, I used to have to go and literally stand over the IT team.* I'd make a few polite requests, and then I'd go and stand beside them and do the whole kindly brontosaurus thing, and shoot down all of their fobs and misdirection. It's a lot harder to do that if you aren't physically co-located, though.

* I was part of the global larger library IT department, but running dev projects and infrastructure/services, not doing hardware or networking. So I still had to interact with the BOFHs.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 4:44 AM
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57: I wish I could do something like that with my projects that depend on IT.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 6:32 AM
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But then IT drags you under the desk and eats you.


Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 7:31 AM
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In the early days of the web I was managing a contract with a web design company who used the nattarGcM technique with their ISP, who was located across town. Our site would go down; I would ring our contractor; they would ring the ISP; rinse, repeat until the manager of our contractor got in his car, drive over to the ISP and literally sat on the desk of their manager until they got it up again. This would happen every couple of weeks.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 7:31 AM
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Bostoniangirl: I use todoist, and I have it set up with IFTT and Google so I can say "OK Google, remind me to ..." for a general todo and -- most useful, a todoist checklist called "Shopping" which lets me say "OK Google, remind me to buy {x}" and adds {x} to the shopping list. Which is really useful when wandering around the kitchen, or noticing that there aren't any light bulbs in the house, or whatever.


Posted by: NW | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 2:42 PM
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But the "remind by location" tends not to remind me simply because I ignore most of the small noises my phone makes. It does work, though, in the sense of triggering reminders where it should.


Posted by: NW | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 2:44 PM
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I've realised I'm not really very lazy. I used to have a self-image of myself as someone who was a terrible procrastinator, and profoundly lazy.

Oh my god. You really are Jammies. Jammies has this leftover thing from his 20s of calling himself LazyJ - license plate, email tag, etc - and every now and then someone who knows him well boggles about the sheer backwardness of it. The reason Jammies thought himself lazy - and I quote! - is that he never was able to completely finish his to-do list, no matter how hard he tried.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 2:49 PM
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I am perpetually frantically, furiously busy at work, and worse, have to follow up multiple times for other people to do their jobs.

I loathe this feeling so much. It happens to me less than it used to, and I'm not sure exactly what changed, or how to keep it from changing back.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 2:52 PM
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61: Setting up IFTT is more work than I feel like doing.

I'd love it if I could just think of To Do items withotu having to say them out loud.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 2:56 PM
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65. It's a premade recipe. No work at all, really. I think you'll find the telepathic interface comes with the right to read everything in your mind and select it with carefully chosen partner firms


Posted by: NW | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 3:15 PM
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66: Yes, I really want it to be selective.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 3:46 PM
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re: 63

Heheh. I think it's a thing. My friend N also says, all the time, that he's 'lazy'.

N works nights, doing 12 hour shifts. And then, he comes home, takes his kids to school, goes to sleep for 3 or 4 hours, gets up, goes back and collects the kids from school, does the full evening routine (football, food, bath, bed), and then goes back out to work again. He's profoundly un-lazy, but in his head, he's still an early 20 something lie-in-bed-till-noon student.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 5:05 PM
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What's really great is when you get the kid a bit older and have some seniority in your job and you can be lazy again, but you really appreciate it on a deeper level.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 5:28 PM
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I'd say that I'm paralyzed by indecision much of the time, but I guess if I really put the effort into thinking about it I'd come to the conclusion I actually am pretty lazy. Maybe I'll do that later tonight.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 03-21-18 8:55 PM
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