Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Timekeeper Slaughter

Whew! I was almost in a panic. I got an email from my BFF Writer's Digest on my way to school this morning. It told me there was only one week left to enter. WHAT? One week left? Where did time go? I thought I had plenty of time. And to make matters worse, worse than the worn-out clichefest that is euphemistically called Unbagging the Cats, the email was dated September 11 and the contest deadline was September 14. THAT IS NOT A WEEK! Seriously! I teach science. I know all the nitty gritty about our timekeeping system. The solar day and the sidereal day. A week is SEVEN days, people! I'm talkin' to YOU, former BFF Writer's Digest! Hire yourself a high school science teacher!

When I got home, I read the whole email. We can't access personal email at school. And we can't use our phones at school. So we might as well start up the Pony Express again. Or invest in some carrier pigeons. Funny how progress sets us back.

Oh. Back to that email. Ha, ha. My BFF Writer's Digest was talking about the Writer's Digest Popular Fiction Awards. THAT'S the contest with the September 14 deadline. Not the 81st Annual Writer's Digest Writing Competition. THAT deadline was June 11. And I already entered. In fact, that deadline was extended, so I actually entered it three weeks before the deadline. Seven-day weeks, too! Not those silly Writer's Digest three-day weeks.

Now I'm not in a panic. I don't write popular fiction. I already entered the contest I wanted to enter.

I feel so efficient.


  1. Wait a minute. You recieved the email on your way to school? Does that mean you were driving when you got it?

    How can that be? You were driving, correct? Were you reading your emails on your phone while driving? I imagine you were also putting on mascara, eating a scrambled egg sandwich, styling your hair, putting in earrings, reading some memos, and drinking a 44-oz. diet Coke--all done simultaneously while you're reading your email.

    So, you're one of THOSE, are ya...

  2. I knew you were a teacher but didn't realize you taught science. What a wonderful profession and a hard-to-teach subject.

    Good luck with your contest entry, no matter how time warped so you could enter.

  3. Sioux, and don't forget using hair spray on that styled hair!
    (When I was a freshman in high school, a friend's parents drove us to school on their way to work. Her mom sat in the passenger seat and there were three of us girls in the back seat. That woman always sprayed so much hair spray, it didn't just land on HER, but the fall-out landed in the back, on top of us. There was always much coughing and choking, but she didn't seem to notice, or care. Hmmmm.....maybe that explains a lot of things! LOL)

  4. Stephen,
    Yes. I was getting frantic trying to find a record of entering. I really need to keep better records.

    My phone, which you must assume to be a toilet-seat-shaped Jitterbug, is quite sophisticated. It can receive emails while I am driving to school, and emit a tiny BLIP from its perch inside the outer pocket of my purse. A miniscule green light flashes when I have a new email or text or message. It's a regular Memo Minder like the one designed by Tom Cruise as Joel Goodson when he joined the Future Enterprisers in Risky Business.

    After backing into my parking spot way down two from the end, I check to see if that green light is flashing. If so, I take a quick peek at my emails before turning off the phone to go inside. An act hampered by the fact that The Pony has already carried in my school bag that contains my bifocals.

    Go ahead and call me to the stand, Ms. Prosecutor. I've got it covered.

    I LOVE science. Love it more than jumping through the hoops set in front of me by the state of Missouri. It seems like they only want the kids to learn the uninteresting things. We are so deeply ensconced in the inner workings of the cell and its phospholipid bilayer that we don't have time to delve deeply into the workings of the body systems. You know, stuff that might actually be useful later in life.

    Thank you. My goal is to better my 89th place finish from last year. I will be heartbroken if I don't make the top 100.

    If you ever saw my hair, you would realize that hairspray was not involved. My mom, however, never left the house without Aqua Net. It was like a bug bomb for children. We could not enter her bathroom for fear of asphyxiation.

  5. Oh yeah...Aqua Net! And I forgot to mention that when you mentioned the "Pony Express," I was sure there would be a comment in your next sentence or so, about....Your Pony!! :)

  6. Becky,
    Yes, I have a built-in Pony express. He's quite good at pickups and deliveries. I sorely miss him when he spends the night at Grandma's house.