A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of small minds.
– Ralph Waldo Emmerson
It’s been a busy few days… and expensive. Plus, the Geek family casa has become a den of plague and pestilence… but more about that later.
First off, what to say about the weekend. Mrs. Geek and I more or less finished off our Christmas shopping on Saturday. We have one more gift to get (a folding music stand for Mrs. Geek’s step-nephew)… that I will have get sometime later this week. Another few gifts, another couple hundred dollars out of the checking account, even though we got some good deals. I know, I know… those of you who have been carving popsicle sticks and tongue depressors since late July to make your own Christmas gifts are laughing at our sordid materialism. So, sue us… we like a good old fashioned capitalist Christmas around here. On the flip side, I guess I have no right to complain about the fact that there’s almost too much month at the end of the money thanks to our gift purchases.
I got to have lots of fun with tools on Sunday. First, I took apart the paper shredder that Mrs. Geek and I share for turning all those nasty charge receipts into confetti to keep the identity thief evil-doers at bay. I tried shredding a few things for the first time in a couple weeks and the shredder was a LOT noisier than I remembered. Alas, nothing to do there except anticipate buying a new shredder in the New Year.
Next, I took apart a vacuum cleaner that also started making an ungodly racket. We planned to get a Christmas tree later in the day, and I wanted to sweep the floor in anticipation of the event. (Why sweep before all the needles fall off the tree? There’s room before all the Christmas decorations are strewn everywhere. I think. Hey… it’s what my Mother always did!) I was more successful there… discovering that hair was preventing the free and easy movement of the spinning brush in the vacuum cleaner.
Then there was a lot of hammering to get the stand on the tree. That actually proved to be surprisingly easy this year. Go me!
Lastly, I ended the day by running speaker wire under wall-to-wall carpet. My parents decided to send me the two rear channel surround speakers from Polk Audio I serendipitiously put on my Amazon wish list as a combined birthday/Christmas present. Thing is, the TV and home theater decoder are on one side of the room and the sofa is on the other and the placement of doors, sliding doors, fire places, and other such openings makes running wire between the two points difficult. A twelve dollar investment in some “fish tape” (a metal strap for running wire in walls, in conduit, and under carpet) allowed me to “fold space” by running the wire under a six foot span under the wall-to-wall carpet.
*Phew* Don’t forget that we also got a Christmas tree, and it required decoration. It all sounds kind of tiring doesn’t it? It was.
This is where the plague and pestilence comes in. Mrs. Geek is a schoolteacher and therefore has an immune system that runs a Darwinian gantlet every year that I don’t even want to think about… so she doesn’t get sick much. After being sick off and on for the last three weeks, I finally brought home a virus that she caught. It’s not slowing her down TOO much, but she hasn’t been sleeping well at all… and me right with her because she’s been tossing, turning, and blowing all night.
All that tool use and tree decoration on Sunday ended about 11pm… which is way past my bedtime these days. I crawled into bed at about 11:20pm and promptly fell asleep for about 90 minutes. I awoke about 1am because I discovered that I tweaked my back moving the tree and Mrs. Geek was having trouble sleeping. I ended up taking some Advil, putting a heating pad on my back and then fell asleep again around 1:45am.That made for about 4 hours of sleep the whole night… which made me rather unresponsive at work yesterday.
Fast forward to last night… which is where the foolish consistency part comes in. (Didn’t think I would get back to that, did you?) After working a bit from home, and stocking up on facial tissues and packing tape, I decided to work on our Christmas cards. Our card list this year is monstrous because we got wedding picture Christmas cards and are sending them to the very-near-and-dear who made it to the wedding and the not-quite-so-near-and-dear who weren’t able to make our Big Day. I started that all by myself at around 9pm, and finished with all of them… you guessed it… just after 11pm. I turned in at just before 11:30 again, only to wake up just after 1am.
This time I woke up hopping mad — at myself. I was mad that I was tired earlier and didn’t do a better job of enlisting the help of Mrs. Geek with the cards. I was mad that I just didn’t give up at a more reasonable hour. I was also mad that I didn’t suggest that Mrs. Geek take some kind of cold medication that would let her sleep through the night. I was also worried that all this lack sleep would lower my immune response to the point that would get sick again… let’s hope.
It all turned out ok though. Company O. has pretty flexible working hours… so I just turned in for 2+ extra hours of sleep after Mrs. Geek left for school. I’ll work a little late tonight… but no harm, no foul.
p.s. I should be able to put up some pics of our decorated Christmas tree after we apply a few final touches.
p.p.s. Gladiator really sounds great with the complete compliment of speakers. My new favorite sound check DVD is Diana Krall – Live In Paris, however.