Wednesday, 6 June 2012
The very thought of opening my laptop, this past week, would elicit an immediate and impending sense of doom in me, as if the Mayans, the Inca and the Aztecs were reaching out a deathly hand from the dim of ages past and reminding me that 2012 will be the year that pseudo-science heralds the ‘end days’. Yes, I sense the intake of breath as your eyes traverse these words, the wonderment: what cause?
‘School reports’ is the simple answer. Simple like resonance: it may cause a gong to ring, but don’t let such idle auditory pleasures deceive you - it could as readily break the earth apart in heaving convulsions. As quick and easy as a report is to peruse, clumped with its fellows - a wall of demanding blank pages - it also has a dark side, a side that can rend a nervous system apart, tear neural network from neural network, and leave the victim naught but a coffee filled husk.
When reports are trumpeting for you, it is astounding how easy it is to find other tasks with which to occupy your mind. Clothes need hanging, books you haven’t finished suddenly leap and dance and sing for your attention, your back catalogue of unheard podcasts demand your concentration. Things require cleaning and fixing. Whole garden beds become weed choked hazards, a morass that will, without immediate attention, descend to the putrid fens and bogs of the ancient battlefields of Dagorlad. You even wonder whether those TV dramas you’ve been avoiding are actually as bad as all that... yes, your mental functions do become impaired.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I love my job, and would happily sit and talk about little Bill or Mary-Ann with Mum or Dad till the shadows lengthen, twilight descends and the fire has dimmed to just a glow of embers in the stony hearth. But writing reports has a stigma attached to it, a mental black mark. When someone mentions reports are upcoming I blank out momentarily and imagine a broken wooden signpost in a barren landscape, a place a weeds and sand and death. Perched atop the signpost is a crow, head cocked and watching me with its cold and beady eyes. Yes, reports have an almost mythological doom-laden connotation for me.
There is light at the end of the tunnel. Reports have a deadline, and while that may mean coffee and dysfunction, it also means the process has a definite end. My latest diversion must wind up now, I suppose I shall have to face them...