Tag Archives: wasting time

Day 76

I started reading some blogs last night, which took the best part of an hour. It was more entertaining than surfing eBay, but it didn’t help me in my search for cheap medallions, so it was a case of swings and roundabouts.

I meant to read some more tonight but I seem to have swerved from the path of righteousness and started browsing poetry sites looking for ideas on writing better poetry. No luck so far. Practical help is hard to find. Tomorrow night I will read more. It has now crept into the early hours of the morning and I need to make sandwiches and get to sleep.

First, however, I need to get to 250 words.

We are now seeing a more normal pattern to the business, with more regular customers returning and some trade customers – even one from overseas. It makes life a bit more interesting and stops me wondering about the future quite so much. I have just over two years to go before pension and would hate to find myself unemployed, as it would be awkward to find a job and even more awkward to stretch one wage between the two of us.

Even ten years ago I’d just have gone asking for work, or started something up myself, as I did with the gardening when I decided antiques were no longer paying. Now, with white hair and a walking stick I’m not quite as employable as I once was.

I could, as I said to Julia, go on the street and sell my body. Her reply that only medical researchers would be interested was, I feel, a touch unkind.

I am going to lit this as “uxorial unkindness” in the Tags, as I am on a quest to use more words.

More stained glass. Well, I like stained glass.


Marmalade Hoverfly


I left myself with little time to post, then, when I reached for my camera to load the photos, I realised I’d left it at work. Again. This is annoying.

It also leaves me with 14 minutes to write a post and publish, unless I want to have to start getting notes from WP congratulating me on doing two days of consecutive posting. I’d be happy to do without the notes, but after working my way up to 14 days I don’t want to slip back. It’s like being one of Pavlov’s dog, but without the food.

I have spent most of the night reading blogs and generally catching up, which was quite pleasant, but I really should have blogged first and read second. However, that’s normally the way with me. Good sense and organisation are another world as far as I am concerned,

I can’t think of much more to say, as most of it will be contained in what is now going to be tomorrow’s blog, with photos.

Eight minutes to go.

I ead a blog tonight about writer’s block. I’m glad to say that I don’t believe in it, though I do find writing less easy at some points. I did, however, restrain myself from saying that as it’s not really my place to offer opinions on the blogs of others. I took that option on another blog too – about whether it’s better to say “they” or “he/she”. The drivel that is modern life…

One More Quiet Day and a New Leaf

It has been a restful day today – painkillers overnight, a decent sleep and a morning spent with a hot water bottle. This became an afternoon also spent with a hot water bottle. And cake. It’s been quite good.  Perhaps I have needed to sit down with a hot water bottle and waste time. It’s far more relaxing than sitting at the computer wasting time.

I’m also beginning to think that the problem with my arm and shoulder is RSI rather than arthritis, which is mainly confined to my fingers.

The moral of this is clear – spend less time at the computer. I do my best writing with pen and paper anyway, I have been trying to do more writing at the computer in recent months, but it hasn’t worked out. I thought it would be more efficient if I sat at the computer and made myself write, which would cut out the boring process of typing stuff out. It hasn’t gone to plan – the only thing that has improved is my command of Othello/Reversi and Nine Men’s Morris. A computer in idle hands, is a dreadful thing.

So, drug abuse, my health, fashionable injuries, procrastination. I seem to have covered a range of subjects, but it all sems very self-centred. How is everyone out there? I will try to get round and do some visiting now, as I’ve not been very good about reading recently.

Having said that I have finally started on one of my pile of books to read. It feels good to be reading again, after spending so much time concentrating on writing. Or, to be more accurate, after spending so much time concentrating on procrastination. Time, I think, to turn over a new leaf.


Musings on a Lack of Industry

What sort of day was it today? I hear you ask.

Well, it’s our day off, so it started with a lie in and then we baked a couple of bake at home baguettes (we have accumulated several packs over the last few weeks) and filled it with the poor quality bacon we got from TESCO last week. For lunch we had excellent avocados on sourdough toast (because TESCO does ro some things right) and this evening we had stir fried veg with rice, because we seem to have a lot of vegetables.

Tonight I have put in a grocery order online but have concentrated on things like washing powder and stuff as we don’t need a lot of food. In a couple of weeks I will probably rearrange the shopping so we can miss a week – we just seem to have accumulated too much food as a result of having to make a minimum order every week.

There are a lot of pitfalls to grocery shopping online, even without the inefficiency of the supermarket, one being the accidental stockpiling of baked beans and tinned tomatoes.

The rest of the day was reasonable. We picked up our prescriptions, though mine was two pills short. It isn’t even worth ringing up about, but it will go down in the new diary I am keeping about my prescription ordering, because I’m getting sick of the inefficiency.

I actually got a bit of writing done, read some blog posts and started to organise my submission plan for the month ahead. A couple of magazines have reorganised things – one isn’t taking haibun for a while and another is going to publish every two months instead of every month, so it needs allowing for in the plan.

That’s what they don’t tell you when you start writing – for every hour you write there’s at least on for errands, one for planning, one for reading and one for watching TV. Actually writing time is limited, and that’s before you squander it on video games, looking out of the window and chewing the end of your metaphorical pen.

The List (1)

I’m not going to be caught out like I was yesterday so I have written a list of jobs to do.

  1. Get up
  2. Take Julia to work
  3. Go back home
  4. Make cup of tea
  5. Make toast
  6. Turn computer on
  7. Check WP
  8. Check emails
  9. Procrastinate

So far, I have to admit, it is going well. I am particularly pleased with the procrastination and have managed to pass an hour playing games, reading false news and generally depressing my IQ.

I am going to-

10. Recycle my tea
11.  Make more tea
12.  Do some of the OU course on War Memorials

Numbers 1 to 11 are, of course, the general clutter that needs clearing everyday, though I often leave it until evening if I am at work. The tasks expand, as they say, to fill the available time. I have now, usefully employed just over an hour of my time to finish the course “War Memorials and Commemoration”, as listed at Number 12. It was a bit of a grind because there are 50 pages from a book to be read from the screen, which isn’t easy, and that’s before you realise that it’s 50 pages about critical analysis and various concepts which are not easy for a man of little brain who really wants to learn about war memorials.

I’m feeling quite good about things now. I would probably have put the course off for another day if it hadn’t been for the list, as I’d stalled on the reading when they started on the theory of criticism. I hadn’t realised it would be there. However, I made myself restart it and had started to enjoy it by the end. Fortunately the last 20% of the material was about war memorials and I know enough about them already for the discussions to present no problems.

13. Write blog post.

I just did that. It’s amazing how a list helps…

What happens to all that time?

Over the last few days I’ve found myself sitting looking at a computer screen in the evening wondering what has happened to the day.

Twelve hours pass, and I look at the jobs I’ve done and wonder what happened. (Yesterday was washing up, shredding two lots of paper, taking Julia to work and picking her up, blogging, writing a few haiku, reading a few haiku and making soup and a stir fry.) Even with a snooze and some TV it is hardly a full day.

Tomorrow I will sort books out because once the charity shops open again and customers start coming back to the shop I can start moving them on again. The car boot is absolutely crammed and there are bags of books in the back floor wells too. I also have them piling up at home.

It is a sad thing, but they had taken over and life is, I confess, more relaxing without so much stuff in the house. As a bonus, when we move (which is planned for some point in the next few years) we won’t have as much stuff to sort or move. We will be moving 150 miles, so the less we take, the better. I will probably have to give the kids our new address as Julia seems to want to keep them, but apart from that I’m aiming for a fresh start.

Country Life sent me the normal weekly email and, as long as I can manage an immoderate lottery win, I think I have found just the place for us. I mean, a library by Rennie Mackintosh, a herd of Highland cattle and fifteen bedrooms. That means you can have clean bedclothes every night for a fortnight before you need to start doing housework. If only it wasn’t just 500 yards away from Loch Lomond. I seem to recall it being famous for midges. and after my last experience with them I’m not sure I want another go.

That was how I used to organise myself as a bachelor- fifteen sets of everything and then do the laundry once a fortnight. It’s a good system.

However, talking of Lottery wins, it’s going to have to happen soon, as I’m going to stop buying Lottery Tickets. I never win so I might as well save the money and buy something useful. As of January 1st I’m going to drop the money in a jar and buy Premium Bonds.  There’s still a chance of winning a cash prize and you can actually get your money back when you want it.

Wednesday Again

Today I got up late, as I don’t see any point in having a day off and flinging myself out of bed at dawn, or any time approximating to dawn. The benefit of having two days off together (as I did this week due to a rearrangement of our days in the shop) is that you can work into the early hours of the morning, pretending to be creative. I say ‘pretending’ because I’m not sure I do my best work when I’m half asleep.

I read for the first hour of waking, then went downstairs.

I had written four haibun last night and, after replying to comments on the blog and reading a few other blogs I got down to work.

All four needed considerable tightening up, and that’s what they got.

Then, at 12.00 I decided to have lunch, as I hadn’t actually had breakfast. Sourdough toast, tinned plum tomatoes, fried mushrooms and scrambled eggs, in case a future reader is interested. It’s not exciting or healthy, but it’s what we had in the fridge. A bit like my writing, which is what happens to be kicking around in my head when I sit at the keyboard.

That turned into a short spell of watching TV and a rather longer one of napping. I don’t know why I needed a nap, perhaps because I could.That led on to doing the washing up and doing a bit more writing. After that there was more TV, a discussion of shopping lists, a meal of stir-fried vegetables, the on-line shopping order and this blog post. Actually there was a previous blog post but it developed in a way I couldn’t be bothered to complete, so it is now resting in drafts.


Light and Shade

TESCO have increased the delivery charge – I am now paying them £4.50 to pick and deliver my groceries, where it used to cost £3. That’s £75 a year, though if I had to drive to the shop every week I suppose it would cost me about that in car running costs and time.

That’s it for now. The post is drawing to a natural close, midnight is approaching and I need to do my sandwiches for tomorrow.

It’s tempting to ramble on a bit to try for 500 words, but I’m going to stop now. Three hundred and eighty nine will have to do. (If I’d written 389, it would only have been 385 and I wouldn’t have been able to add this sentence and top it up to 412). I just noticed, on  adding a title to the second photo, that the word count went up. Strange…


Watching TV and Wasting Time

I’ve managed to fit in several episodes of Perry Mason, two films – Darkest Hour and Four Weddings and a Funeral – and several quiz shows.

It’s not been a bad day, but it’s not one to be proud of, and not really a good use of a day when I may only have around 2,920 left. (That’s based on the Biblical three score years and ten).

That’s the limit of my inspiration today. I’ll have to write an extra-long post tomorrow.

The pictures are from the days when I did do things. Apple juice and Peppermint Creams.


Peppermint Creams

More of the Same Old Drivel…

I’m sure I wrote half a post earlier on today, though I can’t recall what it was about or why I didn’t finish. This senior moment stuff is really starting to take hold.

Sunday, as usual is a turmoil of competing strands, including sleeping, eating, napping and watching excessive amounts of Diagnosis Murder. And I’d meant to do so much…

Not that it’s so different from every other day of my life. I always mean to do so much.

I started by deciding not to get up even though I was fully awake at 7am. At 8.30 I decided to get up in “ten minutes” and at 10.30 Julia shouted upstairs that if I didn’t get up my breakfast would go cold.


It turned out to be a lie: it was already cold. She had foolishly taken my “ten minutes” claim at face value. You’d have though she’d have learned after 30 years…

It serves me right for being cuddly, laid back and quirky, I suppose. The exact words that were used were fat, lazy and unreliable, but I know she doesn’t mean it. Which reminds me, I must look at the embroidery on the wall to check out the exact date of my Wedding Anniversary. It’s at the end of the month and, with it being the 30th anniversary, I’d better get it right. She cuts me a bit of slack for the minor ones, but I’m supposed to be making a fuss of this one.

It’s five years ago since I was last expected to remember so it’s not too onerous.

I just had a quick look at some anniversary gifts, like this engraved glass plaque, because nothing says “I Love You” like something that looks like it comes from a promotional gifts catalogue. Even I can see this would not be a good choice for a main gift, though I might chance it as a secondary gift, with the added bonus that I could have the date engraved on it.

I do like this. Possibly not as a wedding anniversary gift though. Too aerodynamic.

Then I searched for pearl jewellery.

I’m going for a lie down now, as my bank balance is feeling faint.

Seal pup - Donna Nook, Lincolnshire

Seal pup – Donna Nook, Lincolnshire

Soon be that time of year again. A cold day on the coast watching seals.