more than i can chew

Thu 11 January 2018

books It's January, so of course I have great ambitions for 2018 and made all kinds of resolutions about how I'm going to exercise every day and quit eating junk and write the next great American novel. Only not. I'm terrible at resolutions. I'm terrible at plans in general. Because plans are a sort of commitment, which implies accountability, which makes my brain start going down the what-if vortex. What-if I say I'm going to exercise every day, or 4 days a week, or whatever, and then I have a stroke or something and can't do it? Then I have FAILED, am a FAILURE - and worse yet, a LIAR, and deserve the worst tortures that mankind can devise. This is how my brain works. Aren't you glad you're not me?

So instead, I kind of just think a little about what I want to accomplish, and then I think a lot about what I want to accomplish, and then I spend so much time thinking about what I want to accomplish that I accomplish nothing - but at least I thought about it! Now I know you really want to be me.

But this year is a little different. I decided I wanted to read the new Ken Follett book - the one that follows up on the whole Pillars of the Earth series - and then I decided that if I'm going to do that, maybe I ought to dig out Pillars of the Earth and start from the beginning, and then tackle World Without End, and then start on the new book. I'm most of the way through Pillars now and it's as awesome as I remember it being, but the thing about these books is that they are long as fuck. Like, each one is probably a thousand pages, or close to it, and I'm starting to question why I thought this was such a great idea, especially since I have so many other books on my to-read list, and have even borrowed a few that I will eventually have to return - so now I'm debating whether I should interrupt my Pillars Trilogy binge marathon to read the borrowed books so I can return them, or hurry up and finish the Pillars trilogy and then read the other books and return them a little late. Sigh.

I also have another reading project that I'm very slowly working on - my mother-in-law sent me a copy of The Neverending Story in its original German, so that I can attempt to read something familiar in this unfamiliar language. This is the sort of thing that I can really only focus on for about an hour at a time before my brain fries, but I'd like to do a little each day, or maybe 3 or 4 times a week, so that maybe some of the German sticks to me. Maybe I'm just fooling myself but I'm going to at least try.

I also have several knitting projects in progress, and I am going to finish them if it kills me. I have one that for personal reasons I would like to finish this week but it's the kind of pattern that requires some concentration and there are increases every other row so it just keeps taking longer and longer to get through each section. And then when I'm done with that, I have another, easier project that I feel I should be able to finish by the end of the month, if I'm diligent about it. And then I have another, longer project that will probably take me fucking forever, but I WILL FINISH IT, GODDAMN IT.

So between all the reading and the knitting, maybe I've bitten off more than I can chew. Maybe I just need to reevaluate all my self-imposed deadlines. Maybe now that I have a little more energy I'll be able to do all this without losing my mind. Or maybe not. Guess there's one way to find out.