Monday, April 09, 2007

Neither a planner nor a slacker be.

This post is brought to you by........Alcohol!

I saw a great bumper sticker the other day: Instant Asshole, Just Add Alcohol.


I am not a planner. For the most part, my life has just happened. Well, except for Em. She was planned. I never wanted to be able feel any resentment towards her because she was an "accident."

The thing i find kind of odd, is that i don't care. I don't want to plan my life. I find planning BORING. (This was a definite deficit when i was a manager of an accounting department.) I contrast this with my SIL who is always making lists of "where i want to be in 5 years." I don't want to think about where i want to be in 5 years. Still alive is good enough for me.

This lack of planning has worked out pretty well for me. I have gotten jobs, like my last one, through happy accidents of fate. I have never taken an accounting class in my life, and i ended up as the manager of an accounting department. Which either proves that i am brilliant, or that accounting isn't that hard. I know which one my money is on.

Right now my life is sort of a blur of wasted time and meaninglessness. And i am happy. I don't need to contribute anything of significance to this world. I will not write a best seller. I will not cure cancer (although i wish i knew how).

I will raise a fine child and putter around in my corner of the world doing silly little things.

Are you a planner? Are you planning to do anything BIG? Are you okay with it if you don't?

This space intentionally left blank.

(I told you that alcohol was involved.)


Andrea Frazer said...

You are so funny.

I am such a planner. Let me give you my list:

* Plan A: Be working part time by September whilst the kids are at school, preferably in writing at home or...

* Plan B: Be working part time at home with my Ebay biz bigger than its current state of 200/month

* Plan C: Go back to school by 40 and make at least 40k / year so if Plan A or B don't work out and Rex kicks the bucket I'm not making plans to join the temp pool.

Of course, "If you want to hear God laugh, tell him your plans" right?

Or should I switch it to "make Meno laugh?"

God, I'm SUCH a planner!

Anonymous said...

Plans? Planner? Yeeeaahhhh.... *snort*

1) Catch up with Schmoop and Stucco in May.

2) Meet you in May.


3) Find gainful employment that doesn't eat my soul.

4) Finish my FUCKING BOOK. (WasI yelling? I'm sorry.)

5) Become multi-orgasmic.

This comment brought to you by three nights insomnia. Pass the alcohol.

Princess in Galoshes said...

I plan to rule Norway... or some other less-cold European nation, evetually.

That's been on the list for a while. But it's a more sit-back-wait-for-it-to-land-in-my-lap type deal. Does that still count as planning?

thailandchani said...

I like what you had to say.... alcohol or not! You are so right and I agree with all of it.

I am not a planner, not goal-directed and don't feel any compelling need to piss on any stumps while I'm here.

No alcohol here. :)



Lynn said...

I am a planner, but I just focus on all of the things that I have to accomplish in one day (and then I put it on my list so that I can then cross it off)(I look for a sense of accomplishment anywhere I can find it)...I can't even try to see all the way to the end of the week. lol

Joan said...

I am most definitely a planner...and a list maker too...but that doesn't mean I can't enjoy a bit of spontaneity every once in a while.

And since you asked, here's my current list of plans:

* Finish this comment
* Check my blog for comments
* Turn off the computer
* Get ready for bed...

meno said...

mamap, wow, you really are a planner. I think i already knew that about you, just from your posts. Making me laugh has been accomplished! :)

nancy, yeah, that's how i plan too.

princess, you are going to look so good with that crown on your head! It absolutely counts as planning.

chani, i know that for you alcohol is not involved. That's a good thing. I am not very possesive either. I guess some of us have to be drifters in the currents of life. Hang on sister, here comes the tide.

lynn, i made a list this morning. The first item on it was "make a list" so i would have something to check off right away!

joan, good list! I think you can do it too. :)

Special K ~Toni said...

Shit no! I don't even 'plan' dinner until about 4pm! I am a complete fly by the seat of your pants kinda gal!

Girlplustwo said...

i am a semi-planner. and YES, i plan to do something big (at least for me).

I will move out of the US and work in relief work elsewhere.

I will.

Schmoopie said...

I am soooo not a planner. Life is too short! Stucco and I do some crazy, last-minute kinds of things all the time. The funny thing is our daughter is a "list person." We bred someone who has to plan and know every detail of the day. It is extraordinary. We shake our heads and let her "plan" as she needs. She is clearly the responsible one in the family :)

luckyzmom said...

Wait a minute I need a drink!

QT said...

Love this post, alcohol or no...

Hi, my name is QT and I am a planner! Seriously, sometimes I go overboard. I have started to get better about that, how do you Americans call it, spontanaeity thing, but it is hard for me to let go of the list making and such.

I may be the only person to utilize the Task List in Microsoft Exchange.

Anonymous said...

Excellent Title. Good advice. I like to sit in the driveway and watch the ants, too.

Certain things could have been avoided if it were tattooed on my forehead: Do not add Alcohol.

I'm not planning to do anything big, but it sure would be cool if it happened.

Anonymous said...

I have plans to take over the world using a giant laser beam, but the reality is I'm far too lazy.

Anonymous said...

I'm not much of a planner. Other than small to-do lists when I'm running errands (which I need due to the dead brain cells from college), the only thing I plan is vacation. And even then, I plan as far as getting reservations and paying for as much stuff as I can ahead of time (It doesn't hurt as much that way). But I hate to be over-planned.

urban-urchin said...

i guess i have goals more than plans but that suits me fine. like you i plan on raising two fine human beings. that's goal #1. in the past I decided i wanted to be in the film business, so i found out what i needed to do to get into it and did it and worked my way up. Then I wanted to write too so I did that, a friend who is the editor at large for a business mag gave me assignments. THEN I decided I really wanted to go into fashion, so I did. Plans don't seem to guide me- it's the inner 5 year old with severe ADHD..... I am going to give you a big ole' kiss on the lips at blogher my friend.

Lynnea said...

I'm a planner and a goal setter. But I'm very fluid and easy on myself about reaching the goals. Ok, that's not wholly honest. I do get stressed and down when things don't go the way I wanted. Just not all the time. Thing is, I love planning. I love lists. I don't how I ever got to be so anal retentive. This from the girl who used to throw a tent in her truck and go skinny dipping for a night.

Kellyology said...

I'm a planner but my CPA husband laughs everytime I say that. What? Just because you change the plan every five minutes doesn't mean that you're not a planner!

Dick said...

I was a lot more list oriented when I worked but since retirement I've gone with the flow a lot more. Now I need to get back a bit to the list way of life as I again have too much to do in the next couple of months and about the only way to keep it straight is by making lists. I guess they do serve their purpose. But I think I want to get back to being "just retired" before too long.

meno said...

toni, ha ha. I often find myself wandering the grocery store in the afternoon trying to decide what to make for dinner.

jen, i have every confidence that you will too!

schmoopie, How funny! She must wonder if she's adopted, or who the father is. :)

luckyzmom, that's a plan!

qt, i used Task when i worked, but now i am free FREE!

de, your last sentence sums up my current life philosophy.

d-man, it's good to have a dream. Could you laser Washington DC first?

biodtl, i used to go along on vacations that my SIL planned, since she was so good at it. I like my vacations to be lightly planned as well.

u-u, wow, you have done lots of cool stuff. All different too. I hadn't thought about going to blogher. Yesterday is the first time anyone brought it up. So you are going huh?

maggie, i wonder if as adults we feel we should accomplish something big. I did accomplish having a job and all that, but i've never made any kind of big life plans. That seems too scary.

kelly, it's important to be flexible! Very very flexible in this case.

dick, that's true. i had much less time to get stuff done when i worked so i had to be a better planner. But now....meh.

egan said...

I'm not much of a planner either. I tend to live more in the now than the future. I think that has more to do with personal loss than anything else though. Thankfully my wife balances us out and thinks about things such as retirement and paying off bills.

Lynnea said...

You know that is a good question. When younger the biggest plan I made was to never become one of those boring adults whose only concern was their possessions like their cars and houses. And yet, here I am. Taking care of those, the children I brought into the world I swore I'd never have and feeling the need to make a mark they (the children) could look at. So yeah, I think its an adult sort of thing. But maybe your approach is more realistic and honest, and frankly it sounds more calm. To enjoy what you have and not worry if something big is coming around the corner? I love the things you get me to thinking about.

caro said...

I'm like a cork bobbing along the surface of a lake. I make the best of things, wait for them to come. That way I am never disapointed. Now this drives a lot of people wacko. I like that. Throws a curve in their plan...

Anonymous said...

I'm not much of a planner. My entire education consists of, I was doing (insert anything here) and then I got pregnant. Everything just seemed to happen as I muddles through. I used to want to be one of those people that plans everything but then I realized it's okay to be like this. The world needs both kinds of people.

Tink said...

Hello, my name is Tink. I'm a plannerholic. I put reminders in my cell phone. Like, "Get gas!" and "Wake up." I once made a list that had "Make grocery list" on it. It's a disease. :D

Marshamlow said...

I feel like too much planning can make my life feel oppressive. While my husband sets his alarm an hour before he needs to get out of bed so he can plan his day, I like to go with the flow. There seem to be times during the day when I have a ton of enthusiasm and a ton of energy and this is when I choose to do chores. There are times when I enjoy intellectual pursuits and times when I do not. There are times when I enjoy being around people and times when I prefer to be alone. I tend to see where my moods take me and then dive in full throttle.

Thanks for your generous contribution in the relay for life.

Liv said...

A planner? Yes, I plan everyone else's lives perfectly. My own? I have dreams, but I don't know if I have the stuff to really put the wheel in motion.

meno said...

egan, i am interested in the personal loss explanation. I have done the planning in my life that i have needed to, re: retirement and bill-paying, but i never planned anything BIG. Like setting a goal and then figuring out what to do to get there.

maggie, having kids sure changes your perspective on the other "stuff"; cars and houses. Because you need those things in order to take care of them as well as you'd like. I sometimes envy and always admire people with "BIG PLANS" but i haven't got the drive for it. That's the truth.

caro, i thought i saw you bob by me the other day when i was bobbing along. :)

deb, i read that line in your post today. I agree, if we were all insanely ambitious, man what a crazy-making (more so) world this would be.

tink, those are reminders, not plans. So you are still ok! :) Plans are things like, i want to go to medical school or i want to become a professional ice skater. As i said above, i started yesterday's to do list with "make List" so i would have something to cross off when i was done making the list.

marsha, an hour to plan the day? When i could be sleeping? I don't think so. I like the idea of letting my mood dictate my actions. And you are welcome, i am happy to support that cause.

liv, i bet you do have the stuff. Just maybe not right this minute. One thing i like to remember is that there are, and will still be, many chances for my life to change.

jaded said...

Is a planner and creature of habit one in the same? I go with the flow, but my responses are very predictable.

The Missus is a planner, but she's not as rigid about now as she was when she worked. Free time used to be in short supply, so the planning was essential. It definitely averted a few disasters, but generally speaking the goal setting was something of waste. Things just didn't go as planned. Today, goals are more fluid, to push herself creatively instead of gaining commercial success.

GEWELS said...

I am so-o-o not a planner. I'm with toni on this one. I try to plan but they always go awry and I end up doing totally unplanned and spontaneous things. And, you know what? I couldn't be happier. Most of my life has been full of happy accidents - From the places I've been to the jobs I've had to the people I've met and kids I've created.
Everyday I make a to-do list and end up putting yesterday's tasks back on today's list- over and over and over again.

gary rith said...

The neighbors gave me a rather fine bottle of Scotch for my birthday, and it is tasty, but I am not driving, just blogging, so YES, I do tend to plan my days, weeks, the year. I don't like surprises, and I think these are the reasons I have been successfully self-employed for the last ten years.
What will your life be like when your daughter isn't around to torment???

thailandchani said...

After reading this post yesterday, I tried and tried to remember the Dorothy Parker quote that fit so well.

Out in the garden, it finally came back to me...

If I should labor through daylight and dark,
Consecrate, valorous, serious, true,
Then on the world I may blazon my mark;
And what if I don't, and what if I do?

Kind of says it all, doesn't it?




meno said...

patches, Plan on a good scratch behind the ears if i ever meet you! I think the Missus is probably more relaxed now that she's not working. I know that we are reaping the benefit of some of her creativity.

gewels, My life has been full of those accidents too. I think i have been in a position to take advantage of them, but they were not planned.

gary, you have some good neighbors! We are going to a scotch tasting event this weekend. that should be interesting. When Em isn't around to torment ME, i will travel and enjoy the quiet.

chani, oh brava. Thank you for that, it's perfect. I love Dorothy Parker!

Anonymous said...

FACT 1: I am a compulsive planner.

FACT 2: The best things that have happened to me were not planned. (Except going to live in Spain for a couple of years which turned into over two decades, but I only planned that two weeks before I went. Without a job, place to stay or very much knowledge of the language. Come to think of it, the plan was to have an adventure, LOL.)

Lucia said...

I am not a planner. If I had to plan my life, I'd be nowhere near where I am now. I agree. A plan would be terribly boring (at least for me).

Mother of Invention said...

Kind of what I said in my recent post about what I am and what I'm not, I'm actually okay with not achieving great goals, it's not me...I value what's on the inside more and on that I don't lack much. So I don't have great plans and goals. I let things happen like you do mostly. I suspect you are quite brilliant with accounting! I would not be doin' that! We have a friend who is anal about life goals...he has a master 10 year plan ON PAPER and has accomplished all of it so far! I hate when he asks what our goals are on our birthdays! I kid and humour him saying, "Well, if we get really ambitious, we may get around to changing the burnt out light bulbs!!!" when I really kinda want to say,"Stop with your F**KING goals and let life happen for once! You might even like it!"

sari said...

I only plan for the immediate future, as in "this is my list of stuff I have to do and if I don't write it down then Bill "X" won't be paid and we'll be in for it."

Other than that, I don't plan. When I meet people that have planned their wedding since they were children, I'm amazed. I met a girl the other day who had her children's names picked out since she was young. Amazed again.

I always see things in my far ahead future, but I don't plan to get there, I just do. In some ways that's good, in others not. I'm not a terribly motivated person and I enjoy just being with my family, so I'm happy how I am.