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04 December 2001 @ 10:55 pm
Procrastination Prolongued Profoundly (Cont'd.)  
I have always been a fan of the concept. I like the purity of an idea while it’s forming in your head – it can change, it can be molded and mended and fixed, and no one will know; it can be perfect. But the moment it’s written down, it is no longer pure. Instead of an idea, it’s words. People will point out its mistakes. People can mock it. It can insult people. The idea itself can be changed by an outside source, amended and ripped and torn apart until it isn’t your idea at all. Then you’ve got nothing left for all your hard work. But an idea, a thought, is perfect. It can’t be chipped at, except by the master sculptor. Mistakes can be fixed without showing up. Your designs remain your own.
But I am wandering quite far from our topic of the night, which is procrastination. Yes, I employ it, using it to avoid homework. I do think that some homework is unnecessary, the “busy” work, because if I already know the material than I should be able to simply take a test, pass it, and be done with that topic forever. If a student doesn’t know the material, than he or she should do homework, because how else are they going to learn? If a student is in Advanced Calculus, the teacher is not going to make him or her complete page after page of basic arithmetic. And so it should be in any other class as well. If “Tanya” doesn’t know that the Senate has one hundred members and each Senator has a six-year term, than she should have to do the busy work and read the chapter and study her brains out. But if “Thomas” knew that going into the class, than why can’t he do something challenging, such as comparing Japan’s government to ours? If “Thomas” can prove that he knows the material just as well, if not more so than “Tanya,” then he should be free to do as he pleases, be it independent research or nothing at all. His mind has acquired the knowledge that the class requires him to know. He deserves an ‘A,’ even if all he did during the semester was shoot rubber bands at the ceiling. Perhaps this is unfair to his classmates, but is it his problem? No! If they can’t memorize a couple of simple concepts despite having them parroted by teachers multiple times, than that is their problem and they should have to deal with it. (Oh, my editor claims I’m being rude again. Sorry, sorry.)

I can see that my attitude and outlook might be a major problem in a future office environment, depending on my co-workers. For example, perhaps the boss has several high-priority projects that he needs done. If there were five people in the office who aren’t familiar with the software necessary to complete these projects, and one person who is, what would the employer do? Most likely he would send them all to be trained in the software. These six workers would find themselves at a class about, say, Microsoft Excel. The person who is already familiar with the program might skip the classes, or while in them surf the ‘Net the whole session. At the end of the training period, the employer would assign the projects out to those who work for him. And if that one person with the prior knowledge finishes the projects quickly and does an even better job than expected, it is very likely that he/she will get a promotion. Pretend I’m that person. Now, my co-workers will likely gossip that it was favoritism that got me the promotion, since I didn’t do squat in the training class. Now, this wouldn’t be true, would it? At some point in my life, I picked up the information necessary to complete those projects and they didn’t – it’s not a matter of how I obtained the knowledge, but how I applied it. That’s how it should be in a class – it doesn’t matter how I learned about democracy – what matters is that I can regurgitate the information when life requires it.

Anyway, the major problem that I foresee in my future, because of this attitude of mine, is that to my boss it will appear that I am not doing anything while my co-workers are working as hard as possible. It will be false – I may not be working, but it is only because I already know what the other members of the staff are still figuring out. I’m ready to move on to the next step and leave them behind. But because I appear to be lazy and uncommitted, I expect that I might get passed over for promotions and perhaps even get fired. Am I procrastinating in this situation? Maybe, because if I’m doing the same busywork as everyone else than I appear to be productive. It could be that I’m simply putting off doing the inevitable dull work that the others are doing now.

In that light – the punishment for failing to do busywork because it’s unnecessary – it does seem foolish to ignore something that is so simple as a worksheet on Judicial Review. In this next six weeks and beyond, into the next semester and college and the work force, I will strive to do this extra work not for because I wish to be awarded for “virtual gain” in knowledge, but to avoid being punished for apathy. That’s my plan – avoid punishment. I can hope that through reviewing what I already know will help bring forth connections that failed my notice the first time.

One thing’s for sure – throughout this discourse I’ve come off as incredibly rude and conceited and snotty – now that perception will be more harmful than my penchant for procrastination ever will.

Jinkies, did someone read all that? I'm impressed.
Why do the very beginning notes of "Anata" make me think of Tchaikovsky?