I am mad. The other day some lazy/ignorant person tried to tell me multi-tasking is not humanly possible.
As I bake an upside down cake and dust the coffee table and discuss effective parenting with my lucid 89 –year- old mother while “holding” the phone under my right ear, I strongly disagree. I CAN do it all.
So I am here to cell you on a product I support. According to Anne Kadet ,a writer for “Smart Money” Magazine, (as opposed to “Dumb Money”) a middle-aged man in New Jersey named Bruce Peterson, upon losing his mother, caring for his aging father, and trying to run a flailing printing business, ran into a novel means of exercising his sagging body. He googled and found a Treadmill Desk for 1,300 well spent dollars. Brilliant –if you ask me.
Bruce now walks well over 5,000 steps a day at 2 miles per hour while composing e mails, perusing proposals and chatting on the phone. He must be not only a successful businessman but a svelte sport as well.
Suppliers of the Treadmill Desk report the typical user is a driven, type A personality prone to being a workaholic/multi tasker/exercise fanatic with little or no life outside the office. Many are lawyers, professors, and/or radiologists who read X-rays while on the run. According to a study conducted by Mayo Clinicians, a serious user can burn an extra 100-150 calories per hour treading on the mill. And this is in a world where most office workers text or e mail a colleague across the hall to avoid walking 12 feet to communicate in the flesh.
I am reminded of Mitchell Pritchett, Claire Dunphy’s younger brother on “Modern Family”. A compulsive, driven, successful attorney, partner and father, Mitchell doesn’t do anything “half way” and in fact tends to overachieve at most everything he attempts. One of my favorite episodes finds him and Claire at the gym. While Claire hobbles along on her machine, Mitchell is performing “Warrior Two” on the next treadmill.
Exasperated, Claire pants, “Can’t you do anything normally, Mitchell?”
“I am simply doing TROGA, sis”, he calmly replies.
“It is Yoga on a Treadmill and I love it!”
Believe me, I am not one to sit around doing only one chore at a time or nothing at all. After all, according to a recent study by some unknown researcher, a sedentary profession takes two years off one’s life. Yikes! The suggested remedy, if you are a phone operator, writer, student, architect, truck driver, or worker who sits most of the day, is to get up every hour and take a walk to get your circulation moving. And while you are at it, you might pick up a pair of Slipper Genies—scuffs you wear around the house or office as they dust the floors. Ingenious—no?
Down deep I realize my title sounds murky, but it was my favorite form of movement across the sparkling pool. Yes, I swam like a hopped-up frog as a kid, and have medals stashed away somewhere as proof. I take after my dear, dead dad, who not only swam like a dolphin but learned to dive like a dove as a little peep. His legendary Jack-Knife always made my heart flip, sometimes backwards. But sadly, Pops had a massive STROKE before he’d reached the bank, and was forced to remain poolside.
So current-ly I’ve been watching the Olympic events in London from here in Vienna. I’s a kick to wave at the studs from my “Lazy Girl” recliner. My body, wet with perspiration, flutters like a fish outta water as I pull hard for the losers.
I have less than shallow feelings for Michael Phelps and after his flailing start in the water was thrilled to see him perform swimmingly until the end. My heart sunk when he promised he is now backing out but I’d be treading in dangerous waters if I tried to make him jump back into the race. I trust he will not grow board/go overbored and shrivel up once he is high and dry. I plea—
“Please, Michael, don’t go to pot!”
But let’s discuss me. Last week I was in Idaho, but you know that because you follow my blog. My older brother Biff, always an undependable hero, stopped by my mother’s house with a school of his OLD juvenile delinquent buddies. They swore they’d come to visit my meddling mom, but deep down I had a sinking feeling they wanted to give me a hard time about going under/skipping town. One of my least favorite derelicts is called “Skip” and he jumped right up when I entered the room.
“Hey Nanner! How the heck are you?” He inquired without waiting for my reply. “I can’t look at you without remembering how FAST you were as a kid. In the water, I mean.”
At witch point, Mom, drowning her sorrows in bitterscotch pudding, interrupted—
“Yes, Nanner, people used to say YOU could have been in the Olympics, but didn’t want it badly enough.”
“Write” I thought as I resumed breathing deeply and goggling Michael Phelps on the internet.
Did I mention on Twitter the other day that it took me three or four daze to fly from Virginia to Boise, Idaho? “Sigh.” Weather it was electrical problems or missing pilots or pure and simple negligence, the plain did not lift off the runway so I disembarked and sat at Gate 13 for ever—
and a day.
I noticed cell phones perched around me—plugged into outlets here, there and everywhere. Some buzzed, some rang, some played tunes, others sat silent as if disconnected. Most were unattended and all alone. Their owners abandoned them for a fresh brew at Star Backs, beer at Steins, fries at Seven Guys, or maybe a sharp “Virginia is for Luvers” T shirt at a kiosk operated by someone from a long distance away from phone, I mean, home.
Call it waiting, as I plugged in my stupid antique sell (my brilliant son insists I do not need a smarter one) and hoped for a charge. No seats near my instrument, I called the shot and placed myself across the corridor some forty feet away, but within ear shot. Myself, shot after all the waiting, started hearing “DING DONG/DING DONG/DING DONG and was annoyed, to say the least. Heads around me turned and rolled and the nagging noise continued, then stopped. Some poor hippie snoozed nearby as the racket replayed the same DING DONG message. This time it woke him and he flipped his lid:
“Dude! Answer this fuckin phone!”
I came to and realized my stupid cell phone had a caller and I should pick up.
I innocently sauntered over, ripped the plug out of the wall, and threw the little nuisance into the trash.
“No one can contact me anymore”
I assured myself.
Except the hippie who quipped—
“Shit woman–Wut’s this? My wake-up call?”
“So sorry”– I answered on the first ring.
“It was just a wrong number.”
Then somehow we connected as I tried to pick him up…