I put off this column because I knew I could. Because I knew if I got it done by Monday afternoon, it would still be alright (even though I'm supposed to have it finished by Sunday night). But I knew I could, so I did.
That's the creed of a procrastinator. As long as getting away with it is still possible, we'll do it. Rather we will not do it. Because a true procrastinator only does it when they have to do it, and we're very good at delaying the act of doing.
There's an old joke about procrastinators working hard to avoid working, and that happens constantly. But in my case, I simply sat there and didn't start writing this column until I knew I had to because, well, I knew I didn't have to.
On Saturday I was sick still sneezing from the cold I picked up the previous week, probably aided by my putting off going to sleep. Sunday I was too tired, certainly aided by my putting off going to sleep. I did, however, have time to watch The Matrix: Revolutions, which is silly since I haven't seen The Matrix: Reloaded. I want to, but I keep putting it off.
I finally sat down to write this in the lobby of Jiffy Lube, where I'm getting my oil changed after first seeing the oil light pop up on my car two months ago. The oil light went on and off a number of times, so I figured I was okay until the light stayed on. And I haven't driven this car in the last two months, so there was no harm done. The light started going on permanently two days ago, so I finally decided to change my oil today, mainly because I happen to drive by a Jiffy Lube on my way back from the bank.
I went to the bank for two reasons: One, to deposit the check I've wanted to deposit for the past four days. I had to do that today because the last check I waited to deposit still hasn't cleared, probably because someone at the bank waited to deposit it until the last possible minute. So I figured I ought to deposit a few more bucks so that the new amount will clear just in time for me to need it. The second reason was to buy a money order. A month ago my friend, while driving my car, got a traffic ticket that is due in two days, so when I send the money order overnight tomorrow morning, they'll get it just in time. Last possible minute that's the credo.
Now that I think about it, my friend was speeding because we were running late for a show, stuck in traffic that afternoon after checking out of the hotel at the last possible minute. Actually, it was an hour after the last possible minute, because we asked for a late check out. We knew ahead of time that we'd be behind time. The hotel was able to grant us the late checkout because housekeeping never starts making the beds on time anyway.
The ticket came at the end of the month, along with many other tickets for many other drivers. The police probably had a lot of tickets to give out, since they'd been putting them off the whole month. I guess procrastination makes the world go round just a few minutes later than it would have otherwise.
So now I'm forced to write a column in the lobby of a Jiffy Lube, which is good because I didn't have anything else to do. Though I just spent the last five minutes watching the Cosby Show on the lobby monitor instead of writing this column. I'd seen that episode already but it was still something to do that wasn't the work I was supposed to do. Now that there's an episode of The Parkers on, I'm writing again.
I was originally thinking of writing a column on how Michael Jackson was late to his trial but I decided not to because that column would take some researching online. And I don't have a web connection here, so I'd have to put off finishing the column until later and I'm just not the kind of person who would do that. Because when I get home, I want to watch SportsCenter instead.
A brief tangent: I found Michael Jackson's lateness to be almost as ridiculous as his, well, everything he's ever done. No matter how much I procrastinate, I still arrive in time. I'm obsessive about that, mainly in response to my upbringing. I'll put it this way I was born three minutes before my due date, which was the last time my parents were early for anything.
But I digress. I really should start writing my column.
Steve Hofstetter is the author of the Student Body Shots books, which are available at SteveHofstetter.com. He can be e-mailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.