Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Litanies of Complaints

In the last month I've only posted 10 times, and nothing in more than a week. Work has been pretty intense this semester, and time for writing for pleasure impossible to eke out before I slither exhausted (and crabby) into bed. My writing catch basin is overflowing with scrawled notes of things about which I might have written (and might still write): "the antiphonal radiators in the morning," "the sound of the sugar jar tinkling against the teapot as the kettle comes to the boil on the table in my office," AMDG Exterior Contracting"...and just what is a STAMPP point?

A few days ago, when a meeting was cancelled (and no one told me), I started a blog post about being overstretched and underslept, then realized with a start that I'd written some version or another of that post before. And recently. Of my last ten posts, almost half are basically extended whines about my overly busy life and how exhausting I am finding it. Enough, already!

I found this video posted by Paul Campbell S.J. at People for Others to be a delightful mirror to my own grousing. It's nine minutes long and I listened to the entire thing (the shots of the baby in the orange hat at 1:00, blissfully asleep while the chorus moans and grumbles around her, is a meditation in itself, I'm sure). I love the litany of complaints, "my boss prints his spam and hands it to me." It makes me wonder what my internal dialog sounds like to God!

If I were to add one complaint to the list in the song? "My students forget to put their names on their files." When I had four open notebooks on my computer the other night, none with names, all looking for some help untangling their quantum mechanics, trying to figure out who to send what back to in which email was a challenge! (And rest assured, I did gently share my difficulties with them and pleaded for their help in the matter.)

STAMPP is Systematic Technique to Analyze and Manage Pennsylvania Pavement. I'm still unsure why there would be a sign saying "STAMPP point" with a triangle on it on the highway, but at least part of the mystery is solved.


  1. as long as our desire to be creative keeps your mind alive with writing ideas and mine with glass designs, then we will never be bored, now will we ;')