Carry Your Towel and Wear the Lilac to Work on Wednesday, May 25, 2022

So it’s Working Wednesday, but so much more because this is also the day we remember the glorious Terry Pratchett and the fabulous Douglas Adams. These two brilliant men created amazing worlds–Discworld and the Hitchhiker’s Galaxy (Guide to)–and unforgettable characters, so when you’re ready to take a break from working, these are your guys. You can read them, listen to them, and even watch them since movies were made from their work. If you haven’t read them, you must, if only so you know why you must carry your towel and wear the lilac today.

Remember, no matter what your job is, it’s not as bad as Moist Von Lipwig’s

And if you’re feeling down, don’t worry, Marvin feels worse about his job than you do.

And of course, the end of the world. Maybe.

What was your work like this week?

70 thoughts on “Carry Your Towel and Wear the Lilac to Work on Wednesday, May 25, 2022

    1. Me. I don’t always carry a towel. But I always have one close at hand. There are small towels tucked into the car door cubbies. There’s a medium towel rolled up in the trunk. Behind me in what passes for my kitchen, there are dish towels hanging from the cabinet handles and a dozen small microfiber towels under the microwave (bottom shelf). Then, of course, there are bath towels in the bathroom. It’s a garage – the bathroom counts as close at hand.

      What I haven’t to hand is lilacs. The nearest I could count on is the Norfolk Botanical Gardens. Do plastic lilacs count?

  1. I had a plan for what I was going to share today and now I can’t remember it. Guess I haven’t been working so much…

      1. Exactly. Being fed grapes on a divan, while lounging in silken folds, and then having wild sex like crazy weasels. Living vicariously here…

        1. The honeymoon was an overnight in Ithaca for the book sale and lunch at the farmers market. Which is what I took the time off for in January, originally. Back to real life and day job here. I have been making teeny tiny clay witch hats. We will take a bigger trip next year.

          1. I hope you take this in the spirit in which is is intended but….that is not exactly the honeymoon I would have wished for you. Teeny tiny clay witch hats are not the sexiest honeymoon element I’ve ever heard of.

          2. Tammy, it depends on where we put the hats…

            Anyway, I am low man on the totem pole at work, so we decided to go with the time I had already taken off, back in January. I have a full week off in October, but hopefully he will be working again by then, so who knows how vacation will work. And we are planning to go big next year, war and covid and life permitting. Probably Japan, since that trip has already been cancelled, but we will see.

          3. Thanks Deb!

            Wind chimes is a good idea. I am struggling with the shape for a pendant…

  2. What was my work like this week? I had this enormous, constantly evolving plan for spring cleaning and garage renovation and so forth and so on… and it’s over. Even my side projects are done. I only have one project left, otherwise its “Surf the Net and be bored to tears.”

    The project? Macramé . And I don’t know how to macramé . I’m working from a web guide, “Macramé for Fumble-Fingered Nitwits”. (Don’t bother searching for that – it’s actually six different PDF files, especially one about a macramé chandelier.) But I was a Boy Scout, later a Cub Scout Leader and a Sailor. I know how to tie a knot. This will end well. What could go wrong? Nothing but good times ahead.

    What am I making? A lampshade. It’s a light abatement project for The Bucket. The Bucket is out of commission until it’s done. And another project, to install a water level gage on the bucket. Eventually, there will be picture. Maybe pictures.

    1. Gary, if you are really bored to tears I have a million projects that need doing here in Vermont. Just Sayin’.

      My handyman/builder disappeared into the eithers.

  3. My work week is GOOD. Because I’m making SALES. Which is mostly what I care about now. So shallow of me. I’m good with that.

        1. I keep trying to send you a link to the Sarah Scribbles comic about book money and it keeps disappearing. Look it up. It’s you.

          1. I looked it up. It’s totally me! I work to buy books. Everyone on this blog will relate to that.

  4. Well, my DH’s COVID caught up with me. I’ve been pretty lethargic about doing anything. Since I was sitting on the couch anyway, I did work on the crochet blanket project. A couple of months ago, my friend dropped off some yarn that had been freed from a hoarding situation. (The hoarder asked her for help – so that’s a thing). Well, I sorted through it and found some similar yarns that didn’t squeak when I worked with them, and started making this. I worked until I ran out of the yellow – so it’s a reasonable sized thing now.

    I’ll pack it and the rest of the yarn up and take them to my church’s knitting / crochet group. They work on charity projects all year and I’m sure they’ll make good use of everything.

  5. I’ve kept veering off-course and then correcting. Was really pleased that I started a treasure-map painting on the last day of my creative week. I decided to take my time, and was happy with it until I went wrong with colour and clumsy. So I need to paint over that (I’m using acrylics). And I do know about colour; I was distracted by my symbolism – since it’s meant to be a focus for visualizing a happy retirement/rest of my life. But evidently unless I prioritize aesthetics, it’s not going to work for me.

    Then I started my proof-reading job, which I’m actually enjoying – but I’ve already slid into prioritizing it, and wearing my brain out. So, off-course and correcting. Going to brave the showers and do some gardening this afternoon.

    1. Thought of you the other day when I saw an ad for a “freelance proofreader,” but the description of the job was full-on development editorial tasks — come up with ideas, write them, turn raw data into blog posts & white papers, and so on. All for some ridiculously small hourly rate. And actual proofreading was nowhere in the description of the tasks, although it did require familiarity with Chicago Manual of Style.

      1. There’s a lot of horrendous exploitation out there. It’s why I’m sticking with Penguin. (But thanks for thinking of me.)

  6. I pushed yesterday to finish getting the garden in, and very nearly managed. Only things left to plant are one packet of bean seeds (not magic ones, alas) in a bed I’ve already prepared, and a few herbs. Plus I have to get three large blueberry bushes and five pots of perennials into the ground. But still, I no longer feel like I’m horribly behind.

    On the garden. Housework and writing are another thing altogether. On the bright side, avoiding the writing will probably get the housework done…

    1. Oh, and my yard is full of lilacs. And I’m about to take a shower, which will undoubtedly involve towels at some point. Does that count?

    2. The house and garden are on my to-do list as well. I’m so far behind. But at least here in Vermont, nothing is supposed to go in the ground before labor day. Of course, that’s outdated info now. It was 94 last Saturday.

  7. No work for me today. None! I have finished all my marking… and I am on my way to France for my niece’s wedding. Nothing but good times ahead… I hope.

      1. Thank you all! I will report on Sunday once I have been through the 3 day extravaganza 🙂

  8. I was doing well this week, installing some safety features and ordering some more in the move to make the house safer for old people. I installed a simple bidet, ordered months ago, and it actually works. But I really wacked out my shoulder from the contortions and stresses required while working in a very restricted spot to get all the proper connections. And now I feel like one of the old people, which I kind of already am.
    So it’s kind of one step, and now a pause to recover. Except that typing, for instance, is quite painful. So I’ll stop and apply ice.

  9. Not much of anything other than my day job here. I am doing a temperature cross stitch (that galaxy one on Etsy) and I ended up being SLIGHTLY OFF on the stitches and having to pull out and redo all of April, and otherwise am still knitting the Encanto skirt. I did finish all the black butterfly-stuff on the Encanto blouse, now i have to figure out the other stuff to sew onto it.

    No word on whether or not Evita gets one last show or not–one of the leads tested positive five days after everyone else, so regardless of everyone else hitting day 10, if he tests positive on day five, show is over. Sigh. My therapist said I was being annoying asking people how they were doing every day to every other day, so I stopped (also the sick ones now have an FB thread for that, hint hint, stop asking, Jennifer), but now I don’t know what’s going on other than one of the sick ones sounds like she’s got long covid already and her heart is racing too fast just petting a cat 🙁 I want to cry.

    Meanwhile I am partying it up (friend’s birthday parties) and going to theater shows (all masked) and feeling like an asshole for going out and having fun while people are sick.

    1. You’re making your friends-with-birthdays happy and you’re supporting the arts. Sure, I get why you’re feeling guilty, but you’ve done what you can to support the sick folks.

      1. True. But if I were them, I’d feel resentful AF at me for not getting it and going out and having a good time, I suspect. Or “Jesus Christ, you idiot, we got it and you’re still going out?!?” albeit I mask up and lord knows none of them were for the last month.

        One girl (the original one who caught it) just announced that she’s tested negative, finally, So one is better 🙂

        1. I’ve had it, it was awful, and I would gladly spare anyone that experience. Although I was the only one masked at work, which did irk me. Of course this meant that I didn’t give it to anyone else…

  10. I washed towels so there’s that. And yesterday I wore lilac colored pants when I went to do errands.
    I made the decision not to go back to the doctor I was trying to make my primary care physician. Then I wrote a well- deserved scathing review of that office on google.
    I met with an insurance guy about Medicare since I will be eligible in July. That went well.
    Otherwise same old same old here.
    I had fun contributing to the ARGH ABC story.

  11. I’m kind of in limbo, because my agent (for very good reasons) declined to submit my current WIP, because it falls in the cracks between genres — basically too dark for a cozy and too cozy for a darker mystery — and she doesn’t have any contacts that might be interested in it. Sigh.

    So now I’m trying to figure out what to do next, while finishing up a novella related to an existing backlist series. I’ve now got three series proposals that went nowhere (two rejected by all the cozy publishers and now this third one), and I need to decide whether to finish and self-pub them or write something else or retire or some combination thereof.

    1. I feel like you should retire on a high note, like Calvin and Hobbes of Schitt’s Creek, but that is just me. One more project that goes the way you want it to, before you let yourself do whatever you want.

    2. Maybe you should do a little passion project to get your inspiration back, happens to all the Best Hollywood Directors that go from independent films to success then get burned out churning out blockbusters. They play around with something fun with no budget. It is the reason Joss Whedon filmed Much Ado about Nothing

    3. I feel your pain. Now that Berkley isn’t going to continue to cozies, I have no idea what I am going to write next. (Nonfiction is all set, but the fiction…not a clue.)

  12. Speaking about work this morning between deep sleep and waking up I had a dream that I overslept and was late for overtime Saturday. What a dilemma! My thoughts were should I blow it off. No that is not me. Call my boss and explain Yup I’m going to be a bit tardy. Then I woke and thought of all the dreams out there my brain chose that one. Flowers would have been a good dream because I’ve been planning to get some geraniums to hang. Maybe some red ones instead of the pink I usually get. And by the way I’ve been retired for over ten years.

    About flowers my middle son gave me calla lily plant and reading the care instructions it says to water moderately. So I am. Every couple of days I put an ice cube in the plant and let it seep into the soil. But does anyone know why the leaves have beads of water at the tips? Is that normal?

    I’m continuing cleaning out the winter clothes and not putting them back upstairs. Every time I give something a second glance I stop and tell myself to get back to it later when ruthlessness kicks in. That way I’ll be sure it goes into the Goodwill pile.

    1. The beads of water are called guttation and it is just the plant releasing a little bit of water. It’s totally normal. I know that because I had to look it up myself a few weeks ago when one of mine started doing it.

  13. Thanks for the videos. It was nice to hear Alan Rickman’s voice again. It was also nice to see Michael Sheen in a “good” role, vs the “evil” ones I’ve seen him in. Two of those selections were unfamiliar to me but looked very interesting.

    1. Happy Birthday, Jinx! It was my birthday yesterday and I too was in the office, but my co-worker brought me cake for breakfast so I think I had a better office birthday. Hope the rest of your day is filled with joy!

      1. Happy birthday, KateG! It’s funny, knowing birthday twins and near-twins always makes astrology seem a little more credible.

        Gemini. Twins are our thing. 🙂

        (p.s. — Many thanks to Lupe & Aunt S. also!)

    2. Happy Birthday!!!!! I hope someone buys you a birthday drink or dessert after office hours!

  14. I discovered the BBC version of Hitchhiker when visiting London the second time. I loved the absurdity of watching Zaphod’s second head look like it was about to wobble off his shoulder. Once I got back to the States, I immediately started searching for copies of the books. The new reboot/movie looked far too glossy for me, but I do think that having Alan Rickman voice Marvin, the depressed robot, was a stroke of genius.

    Now I may have to dig out my copy of Truly, Madly Deeply to cure my Alan Rickman withdrawal.

  15. I folded towels this morning and pruned lilacs day before yesterday. If I were to wear a lilac, it would just look like a stick. Check back in 3 weeks or so.

    On Friday we were supposed to pick up Paul’s dad and have him here for the weekend but about 30 minutes before his plane was due to board they cancelled the flight because of a mechanical issue. We had a bunch of errands to run in the city so we were most of the way to the airport by the time we got the call.

    Even though it was disappointing, there was nothing that could be done and we got a refund for the ticket, which was in doubt since we paid with points but because the airline cancelled the flight we got them back. We were a bit more than an hour from home and 15 minutes from a town (aka the middle of no where) and we stopped to help a fuel-delivery guy whose truck was having mechanical issues and wouldn’t switch to his backup fuel tank. Basically, the gasoline guy was out of diesel. We wound up driving him back to his truck after he couldn’t get a cab to take him, so we were able to help out someone in a bind which we wouldn’t have been able to do with one more person in the truck.

    Saturday we drove 3 hours to visit a greenhouse owned by the wife of a friend of Paul’s. I got some fancy roses and we bought a fountain. Then we drove across country to visit said friend and came home the looong way. We were gone over 10 hours. In a hot truck with minimally working AC. The dogs were with us. None of us were comfortable. The truck is booked in to get the AC fixed.

    Sunday I did the local greenhouse round up and got pretty much all the plants I need for the season then on Monday and Tuesday I got them mostly planted. I have a few plants that need transplanting and I’ll probably get that done on the weekend and set up my new water garden 40 gallon stock tank as well.

  16. Did I mention working on macramé? I underestimated the scope of this task. The PDF with the chandelier starts with “cut the pieces into 3 meter lengths.” I bought two “Macrame Blackish Green 4 Twisted Cotton Cord 5mmx109 Yard 4 Strand” spools in case one wasn’t enough. As instructed, I cut the cord in 3 yard pieces (close enough to 3 meters for government work.)

    One spool didn’t even go halfway around the ring, so I proceeded to cut and tie the second spool. Did I mention that I bought two 14″ rings? The Bucket has an 8.5″ diameter. 10″ or 11″ rings might have been adequate. 12″ for sure. I’m stubborn. I’m not starting over. Amazon says my order of three more spools is due Friday. I can wait.

    That “measure twice cut once” rule? I should have remembered that. There are 68 pieces tied to the ring (it only needs one ring). 68 x 3 yards =204 yards. Two spools should have been 218 yards. 14 yards (almost 5 pieces) went away due to poor measurement. No matter, the bottom fringe gets trimmed anyway. Better the pieces are too long than too short.

  17. Today I happily worked from home again (in the purple house, does that count?) instead of being At The Office like yesterday. My typical workday is a helluva lot more tiring with 2.25 hours of driving stuck on. Also the air quality in downtown L.A. is awful; just driving through it gave me a cough and a sinus headache. Grrr. I have to go back in next week to finish the work I went there to do in the first place. Took so long for tech support to get my peripherals working that I couldn’t get it all done. Phooey.

    Aside from Day Job, not much to report. Most of the ‘gardening’ I’ve done in the past week amounts to ‘tear out spent sunflowers’ and ‘water things.’ Making slow progress on the WIP novel, which is definitely going to be around 75,000 words – I crossed the 70K line this weekend.

  18. Packing, again. Or still. I packed my first box in April. Last year. There was a huge pause while positions were applied for and lengthy decision processes happened. And now I am unpacking and repacking because moving house, even interstate, is only vaguely like moving overseas.
    Our current plan will have packers puting everything in specific size crates. Which fit 1 and 6/7ths of most of the boxes I’ve used so far. Also they charge by volume so I don’t need to take, say, all my spindles of ribbon or all 9 very large bookcases worth of books or the shelves, or most of my fabric. I don’t sew, why do I have a box and a half of fabric?
    I am glad to get rid of unused stuff but I have been working on this one move for an actual Year! I want to be done. I would have fantasies about the whole place just burning down except that I’m hard to fit so clothes would be problem. And the building is too wet to burn

  19. I have spent most of the week lying down after having my first serious asthma attack on Friday. I’ve never had asthma before, but one little allergic reaction in February and suddenly my immune system has turned on my lungs. So I’m back on the steroids I was taking immediately after that happened, and will apparently be on them forever now. Sigh. I’m getting better, slowly. It would probably go faster if I didn’t keep trying to go to work and getting sent home.

    I have put the downtime to good use though, and am finally working on the jumper for my friend’s greyhound that I promised to make for last winter. The neck is LONG.

    1. I have been trying to get my annuals planted in the garden. I had great plans for the weekend and then it was so hot that we got a special weather alert to avoid doing too much. So I would garden for 15 min or a half hour, go in to cook off, come back out….efficient it wasn’t . But I did get all my plants and lots of seeds in the ground. I have one more big bed to weed which will be a horror because I have to get out about 20 square foot of turf. Then I will plant a few nasturtiums and some extremely tall zinnias (all purple. I have no idea where I got the seeds.) This bed has a large and productive fig tree so I plan to leave all the violets under it for a ground cover we can walk on as we harvest.
      Once I live with the bed for a summer I may put in sone lupines. I have a feeling that with the fig tree growth and the expanded bed size it needs a whole new plan.

      We also booked a two week trip to London in July to see my daughter. With any luck the figs will wait to ripen until we return.

      1. Also today we got a call from a childhood friend of my DH, telling us to take the hold off our calendars for the wedding of his oldest son. The marriage is off because the former fiancée who has been living with him had been lying to him. She had not been going to law school for the last three years . He had no idea until someone on social media congratulated her for graduating and someone else said “you haven’t been going to law school.”

        It’s hard to imagine how he will ever really be able to trust someone again .

        1. Poor guy, lucky he found out before the wedding. That is terrifying…if she could maintain that big a lie for that period of time.

          Tell him to check his credit report (get credit monitoring), change all his passwords and change all the locks. Also shut down/freeze any joint accounts and move his individual account to another bank. Banks can take money from any of your accounts you have with them, if you are overdrawn on one of them.

    2. I have rescue inhalers everywhere, beside my bed, in my purse, in my office kit, everywhere. Please take care.

      1. Thanks. I think I’m going to have to start carrying one through airport security. That was the scariest part when it started. I was airside and the inhaler was landside.

    3. Asthma Attacks can be terrifying, always carry several inhalers and try and figure out your triggers, so you can avoid them as much as possible

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