Friday, March 6, 2020

Such a Lazy Boy

By Abir

What element of the craft is the one you most need to improve?

Friday again, eh? The weekend’s almost here, and hopefully a well deserved rest for many of you out there. It won’t be relaxing for me however, because I’ve got two deadlines coming up, (actually one of them was last week, so that’s been missed already) and another is at the end of the month (which I’m also going to miss) and I think, ‘I’ve had twelve months to work on the book I’m supposed to hand in at the end of March, so why am I going to miss the deadline?’ and then I remember that, ‘oh yes, I am very very lazy’.

Actually it’s not quite as simple as that. The trouble runs deeper. It’s true, I am lazy. I’m the sort of person who waits for the last lifeboat to leave the Titanic before getting up off my arse, not because I’m brave, but because the deckchairs are comfy. You don’t believe me? I’ve had two weeks to write this blog post – two whole weeks – and yet here I am, at 8.46 on Friday morning UK time writing it, when it should have been posted several hours ago. (I’ve learned that as long as I have it written before North America wakes up, no one really notices my tardiness). I come on here and I see that some of my fellow writers have their pieces drafted weeks in advance - weeks in advance! -  and I say to myself ‘That’s so sensible. I’m going to start doing that. No more last minute mad rush for me.’ But then of course, the next month comes and I’m still here at 8.46 am wondering what happened.

What was I talking about? Oh yeah, my other fatal flaw (ok, it’s not fatal, but it’s pretty damn ridiculous.) I am a grown man. I am forty-six years of age (I know what you’re thinking, but God gave Indian people genes that means some of us can be in our forties and still look twelve. (It’s actually a curse. I had to grow a beard just to be taken seriously.) But I digress. My point is that I am an adult. I can, apparently, make my own decisions. I know when I’m able to take on new projects or do events, and I know when I should say 'no' because I’m too busy, and yet the fact is I can’t seem say ‘no’ to anything. 

Here are some real examples which I just made up:

Them: ‘Abir, there’s a book group in the Outer Hebrides who’d love you to come along to their bi-weekly meeting. The journey will involve a plane, a boat and possibly half an hour on the back of a donkey. Will you do it? 
Me:  Of course!

Them: Abir. Will you judge this year's competition for best novel written by an Instagram or YouTube star? Warning. Half the text is basically emojis. 
Me: Sign me up!
Them: Great, we’ll send the three hundred and sixteen entries over by lorry next week. Pick the winner by tea time a fortnight from now.

Them: Abir. Would you like to speak to a room full of germ-ridden seven year olds about the importance of time and place in historical mystery writing?
Me: Naturally!

Them: Abir! What do you actually do all day? Will you please get off your fat arse and clean the house?
Okay, that last one’s my wife, but you get the idea.

I say yes to everything, even when I don’t have enough time to do the things I’ve already said yes to. I don’t know why this is. It’s probably something psychological and rooted in my childhood (which means it’s not my fault, and I’m not a psychologist, but if I were, I’d probably blame my dad. Silly old dad – I get my worst qualities from him.) 

Silly old dad. Font of all my bad qualities. He is 96 in this photo. I told you about those Indian genes.

I think I say 'yes' because I just don’t want to let anyone down. But then, I miss their deadlines and let them down anyway. It’s pretty mental. I wish I could say 'no' to more things, but I can’t. What's more, a little bit of me actually does worry that if I did say ‘no’ to more things, and if I did have enough time to meet my deadlines, I’d miss them anyway, because, as I said, I am lazy.

So there you go. Once again Mukherjee fails to make any sort of intelligible dent on the question of the week. But that’s because, as you can see, I have bigger issues to fix first.

It’s 9.38am now. I should really post this before y’all wake up.


Pritha said...

Coming from a fellow member of the lazy community. . .I relate. I too rely on last minute panic for my inspiration.

P.S: I've read all four Wyndham and Banerjee books and turned to a huge fan of your work. Can't wait for the next book. Please keep writing more books.

P.P.S : I'm slightly partial to the third book.

AA DHAND said...

I’m too lazy to read this Mukhers. Send me a brief.

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BATU said...

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