When I get up every morning, I am faced with reminders of unfinished projects everywhere. Opposite my bed, there lies the chip I wore in the marathon, which I didn’t hand in on the day. It’s a tracker chip, which we were warned not to throw away in the normal rubbish. I sometimes think that the Marathon Police are going to burst through the door and demand it back. I mean, if it’s a tracker chip, they must be able to trace where it is, right? I was given an address to send it to, in the unlikely event I didn’t finish the race. I will send it off one of these days.
Also opposite my bed is a calendar. It’s a one of those ones where you tear off a page every day. It has a rare or forgotten word on every page, such as “zouch” which means an ungenteel man or a bookseller, “doggerybaw” which means nonsense and, fabulously, “coffin-ripe” which means ready to die. However, I almost never tear off a page a day, so when I woke up this morning the calendar told me it was the 20th November.
Waking up to these symbols of my inadequacy, I blunder into the kitchen. On the fridge hangs the symbol of my emergency budget, which was theoretically going to lead the way to financial rectitude. It’s half a molten bank card, hanging there with “lest we forget” brazeness, thumbing its nose at my ridiculousness.
Moving on to the front room, I see a beautifully-crafted ashtray: sculpted with my own bare hands from Tesco tin-foil. I have given up smoking so many times that I’ve dumped any real ashtrays I might at one time have owned, and I’ll never buy another one because “shur, amn’t I giving up tomorrow.”
Also in the front room, is a tax disc. The tax disc on display in my car expired on 31st October. The tax disc in the front room will expire on the 31st of January. Here’s hoping it gets hung before it expires.
Speaking of the car, the poor, bruised, battered car that my sister passed onto me in such immaculate condition and is now literally held together with sticky tape, every time I see it, it reminds me of my ridiculous levels of procrastination.
You may remember that all my “Very Important Documents” are being kept in a brown Hula Hoops box on top of my wardrobe. Well, my boss in DCU allowed me to take an old filing cabinet from work. The solution to all my organisational issues.
After an evening class in DCU, I dragged that filing cabinet out of the Language Services building, no doubt causing lasting damage to the floor there, and certainly raising my heart rate to optimal fat-burning levels. I loaded it in my car, probably looking like a thief in the night. Since then the filing cabinet hasn’t moved from the car.
In the two and a half weeks since loading the filing cabinet into the car, I have wistfully thought that it would be nice to bring it inside. That I’d enjoy filing my paperwork away. That it would be helpful to my “study routine”.
And yet every time I unlock the door, release the brake, fasten my seat-belt and rev up the engine, it bangs and clatters, sometimes digging into my back, reminding me of my great plans, and of their non-fulfillment, and a teeny part of my spirit is crushed.