Quote of the Moment

"It's never wrong to hope, Byx," said my mother. "Unless the truth says otherwise."
- from Endling #1: The Last, by Katherine Applegate

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Time Warped

According to my computer clock and calendar, it's Wednesday, October 17th, 2007 at 8:32 PM (Pacific Time) as I type this. It doesn't feel like Wednesday, October 17th, 2007 at 8:32 PM (Pacific Time), but the computer clock and calendar and newspapers all agree that that is, indeed, the time. Something's gone wrong with the space/time continuum, and I can't for the life of me figure out what.

What does it feel like? Well, aside from the impossibly surreal 2007 and it already being past mid-October, it doesn't even feel like a Wednesday, or 8:33 PM (time changed as I was typing). This whole week has felt "off" in some indefinably irritating way; everything is taking too long and being too aggravating and generally not going nearly as well as, by all rights, it should be. Right now, my internal clock is ready to swear by the nearest convenient god that it's about 10:15 PM on a Monday night, preferrably at the start of the month. I know it's a Wednesday, unfortunately, because I worked today, and I don't normally work on Mondays - work, like everything else I've done this week, felt overlong and subtly irritating for indiscernable reasons, thus proving irrefutably that it is, indeed, an event that occurred this week. Last week, by comparison, went unnaturally smooth, and even though I worked five days I got out early each day.

One of the things I find most aggravating about the warped time of the past week or so is that I can't even say I've accomplished nothing. Well, I've accomplished far less than I ought to - my latest Skyhaven expansions remain mere unsketched phantoms in my cerebral cortex - but I have made some measurable progress in other areas.

I hit Chapter 19 in my latest story - though by rights I should've hit the end and been back on revisions already.

I finally lost a belt-notch worth of girth since I started this job - but, that can't exactly be attributed to this week, even if it is a move in the right direction.

I'm down to my last page in my latest sketchbook - though I should've finished it in August at the rate I was going earlier this year.

I even got armatures bent for holiday ornaments... and my early start meant I could finally try my hand at another project I've been wanting to do for years but never had the time/ambition to try. Since my shipping ornament load dropped immensely this year (still shipping a few out, but mostly it's just cards), I'm trying my hand at making ornaments for resale... as in, resale in a shop, to strangers. Not the Paperclay sculptures, of course. Those are too labor-intensive and slow, not to mention my end results are still less consistent than I'd like them to be. But this year, when I was painting Grandpa's tamborine, a germ of an idea stuck in my mind. Painted drums... What if I could make little drum ornaments, fabric over cardboard instead of leather over wood, painted with "totem"-type animals or designs, for resale in the New Age store my mom works for? Her boss takes pretty much anything, from cards to medicine wheels, on commission, and drums are popular... so, if I could figure out a cost-effective means of making little drum ornaments, I might just finally hit Number 4 on the 2007 Resolution List. (Refresher: Resolution Number 4 is offering an item I have created for sale.)

This past week, I've been making up prototypes from materials gathered over the preceding few months, doing market research (read: asking Mom what the best-selling items in the store are so I can plan my designs accordingly), gathering royalty-free ref images from Corbis... and this, then, is where the time warp reveals itself. For, considering the fact that it only took me a few hours to paint a comparatively large (compared to these suckers) drum, and considering the fact that I should have any salable items - or at least the first wave of salable items - delivered for the store's consideration by the end of the month to catch the leading edge of holiday shoppers, I should've been done with prototypes and onto finished products two weeks or more ago. Even as I type this, as the mentally-refuted time of 8:49 PM (yeesh, it shouldn't have taken me this long to type this little - further evidence, if I needed it, of a flaw in the flow of time), I have parts drying in the basement for my third and final design prototype test. If prototype #3 works as planned, actual ornament production commences as early as tomorrow and as late as this weekend. If it doesn't work as planned... well, prototype #2 ought to do the job. And I've still kept my costs low enough to allow for a tolerable end-price, even after commission markup.

So, all in all, I can't say I've specifically wasted my time, though I clearly haven't been utilizing it to optimal advantage. I can't be wasting time and simultaneously accomplishing things, can I? So what's going on with the space/time continuum? Why is it behaving so erratically? And, most importantly, why is it messing up my week? I don't know... I just don't know. I wish I could find out, but I don't seem to have the time.