Past Me thought it was a fine idea to schedule the following for the last two days: Teaching a three-hour book proposal writing class Monday night, teaching a three-hour article writing class Tuesday morning, teaching a three-hour article pitching class Tuesday night, and writing a recap of The Mindy Project when I returned home from Tuesday night class. Also, then, an eye doctor appointment this morning (Wednesday). Here is the problem with those handy computer calendars we all use now, with the slots for each half-hour and the bars that show you that you’re occupied then: Technically, of course, according to the space-time continuum and Google Calendar, all of these things were possible. So every time someone asked Past Me, say, three months or so ago, “Are you available to teach a book proposal class from 7 to 10 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 26?”, I would then look at my calendar for that day on my iPhone and see that the slots from 7 to 10 p.m. on that day were free. I would then say, “Why, yes, I am,” and enter it into my calendar. It is only as I scanned my calendar a few weeks ago for upcoming exciting events that I realized I had said, “Why, yes, I am,” to a lot of things. I prepared the best I could, but the thing about teaching and recapping is there is only so much you can do to “prepare.” They are tasks done mostly in real time.
In any case, I lived, despite the conniving Past Me, with an assist from Fate and Luck and Life to make it a tiny bit more difficult: Yesterday’s events included a broken perfume bottle flinging shards of glass all over the bathroom in the morning, a comically difficult delivery of a box full of wines we ordered ages ago, a snow/rain storm, a lady who needed to borrow my cell phone because she was locked out of her apartment and also the buzzer was broken and also her cell battery died, and a DVR that just up and refused to record The Mindy Project so that I could recap it when I got home. (Sometimes the Time Warner DVR just quits for no apparent reason, and I usually have to unplug it and reset it to get it going again. But last night, that isn’t what happened; it recorded Go On at 9 p.m., nothing at 9:30 p.m. — when it should have gotten Mindy — and then kicked right back on at 11 p.m. for The Daily Show without any meddling. It is difficult for me not to take this slight personally.) Luckily Fox’s publicity department happened to have posted the whole episode on its password-protected media site, and luckily I happened to have signed up for a sign-in on said publicity site. Otherwise, there would have been a meltdown that may have included me drinking a large portion of that wine shipment.
Today is nice: I finally got to an eye doctor so I can stop wearing years-old glasses and went to the grocery store so we can eat.
But this is what you do when you depend on piecemeal work from disparate sources to continue feeding your bank account. I taught the How to Freelance class last night in the middle of all of this. The answer to How to Freelance is: This.