Saturday, August 01, 2009

The Chaos Comes to an End

Now my only real problem is figuring out how much stuff I have to mail (and where) and replying to emails of various sorts. I have a meeting in about an hour, but I told everyone to send me agenda items (and that we were sticking pretty close to the agenda), and only two people have responded.

I've been busy non-stop for the past few days. And stressed out enough that I haven't been sleeping well. I've been waking up before 6am even though I've been going to bed around midnight. Waking up before 6am isn't that weird for me when I'm getting enough sleep, but I tend to sleep in until 7 or 8 when I'm sleep deprived. I'm reminded of a talk that I attended nearly six weeks ago when the speaker said that there is a function that can convert a certain amount of sleep deprivation into the equivalent amount of alcohol consumption.

Tonight I may end up mixing those two, as I have been invited to a wine potluck, and I think I am going because this afternoon I made my way to Trader Joe's where their sommelier suggested an excellent $8 bottle of wine, and I purchased it. Apparently the Trader Joe's in Cambridge has a draconian carding policy*, as the cashier not once but twice called over a supervisor to examine my out-of-state ID. Should have brought my passport with me.

The biggest crisis that happened (except from the rain, which I was able to mostly avoid through a clever combination of tunnels and shuttles), was that Walter Bender's laptop didn't work with either projector that we had yesterday, so the entire group decamped from E25 to the Media Lab to use a conference room over there. My technical minion was all snarky about this because he insisted that everyone submit their talks as pdfs so no one would have to use their own laptop. I ignored my minion, as I was happy that Walter Bender had been so helpful and kind to us this summer. The Media Lab was right next door, and this was in the last session of talks before lunch, so it didn't throw my schedule off.

Everyone here is scattering to the found winds. My primary minion conspired with an airport van service to whisk everyone away. He is much better at delegating than I am, and he has put his minions to work at making sure that everyone gets checked out and onto the shuttle. I suspect that he is sleeping. This in one way in which he is like a cat: many, many, many hours of nap-like sleep, much of it in the daytime.

My plan for tomorrow is to clean the office. (Assuming that the wine that I may be drinking tonight does not mess up my sleep schedule.) If you're in Cambridge, MA and need office supplies, construction paper, or an ironing board, I can almost definitely hook you up. I also have about 40% of a bottle of bourbon, but I suspect that it should not be too hard to find a taker for that among the locally based staff.

Monday I have to stop by a few places during business hours to wrap everything up, and then Monday evening I fly home. I have nothing scheduled for Tuesday, as I fear that the airlines will conspire to trap me in some other city when I want nothing more than to go home. In the best case scenario, I'll take Tuesday off before diving back into the work for my real job. I'll have to check my office when I get back to see if the desk copy of the book I assigned has arrived.


*Miracle of Science, on the other hand, does not. Allow me to recount an anecdote that I would probably find less amusing if I were getting more sleep.
23-year-old coworker, after I ordered a beer: She didn't card you!
me: My 21st birthday will be old enough to get its learner's permit at the end of the summer.