Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A Creature of Habit

I have a lot of excuses for my recent blog inactivity - a new(ish) job in retail (at the start of the holiday shopping season), 19 dogs, 2 cats, medical problems (not band-related), and a tilted port. I don't mind being so busy, and when I worked as a VCASA (volunteer court-appointed special advocate) in child-abuse cases years ago, my supervisor told me, "If you want to get something done, ask a busy person to do it." What I mind about it is the unpredictability. I think part of the reason for my weight loss success with my band is that when I had surgery, I was self-employed and in complete control of my schedule, so I could attend to everything from medical appointments to planning nutritious meals to exercise according to my own preference. Working for someone else sure has put a spanner in my works (to paraphrase PG Wodehouse). I pride myself on my flexibility, but maybe I'm not as flexible as I thought I was.

(Note: a spanner in the works = ruining a running engine by throwing a wrench into it.)

When I was growing up in New England, the makers of Prince Spaghetti ran a series of TV commercials on the theme, "Wednesday is Prince Spaghetti Day." An Italian mama would lean out her tenement window calling her son Anthony to supper. Anthony ran home through the streets of North Boston, happily anticipating his Wednesday Prince Spaghetti supper.

As much as I like spaghetti (it's food, isn't it?), I've never been a Wednesday is Spaghetti Day kind of girl. Or a Meatloaf Monday girl. I've known women who swear by the ease of day-of-the-week meal planning, but I crave variety too much to eat that way.

On the other hand, I am certainly a creature of habit and I love the safety and ritual of my routines (and I'm Episcopalian, too). Laundry on Monday, meal planning on Thursday, grocery shopping on Saturday, and so on. When I was hired at JC Penney this fall, the store manager told me she couldn't promise me a predictable work schedule, and I assured her that was no problem. No, it's not a problem. But it sure is a challenge!

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