A 2 page paper

For one of my classes, I had to attend a public government meeting. I found one with a topic that I felt strongly about, and took notes at the meeting. The meeting was supposed to be an hour long, but, because I wasn’t the only one feeling strongly about the topic, the meeting went on for 3 and a half hours. I had a lot of notes.

I started writing the assigned 2-3 page paper, without the notes, just answering the prompt questions that were assigned. An hour later, I realized that I had 7 pages written! Oh my goodness. I had better start cutting.

I ended up spending an hour cutting and found myself with 8 pages. So much for cutting out pages. I spent another 6 hours cutting out paragraphs and descriptions and my own opinions to get down to 4.5 pages. Cut some more.

I ended up with a 3 page paper with 2 lines on the 4th page with the bibliography. Not bad for a rambler like me.

I turned it in, then realized I didn’t quite answer one of the questions, but I hope it’s good enough to pass the assignment.

Zoom fatigue

Zoom fatigue

The above linked article explains why Zoom is so fatiguing. The four reasons listed below are a lot of the problem. We need to address these and make changes as we can to keep Zoom from exhausting us. The article is really good. I have just taken the four reasons from it. Reading the article is a lot more helpful than my small blurb of it. There is a great survey at the end of the article. It explains your own Zoom fatigue and what it means. I, unfortunately, scored in the 96th percentile.

1) Excessive amounts of close-up eye contact is highly intense.

2) Seeing yourself during video chats constantly in real-time is fatiguing.

3) Video chats dramatically reduce our usual mobility.

4) The cognitive load is much higher in video chats.

Modern Day Playing Hooky

Modern day playing hooky

The above linked article is interesting, but it refers to the girl in it as a modern-day Ferris Bueller. I don’t think I would go that far. This child needs a handler, like Ferris did, but she’s just outsmarting the system, not running around town.

The girl figured out a way to lock herself out of Zoom, basically making it so that she can’t attend classes. It took many adults and a great deal of time to figure out what she was doing to get out of classes. She is a smart kid with some guts to outsmart the local adults. I assume at this point that she has someone watching her, or they have figured out a workaround.

Changing out of pajamas

I have multiple zoom meetings with the same group in a week. Some weeks there are none. Most there are one or two. One week, I think we had 4.

I had a few days off and had decided to stay in pjs while getting my tasks done. This worked great. I got stuff done and got onto a zoom meeting. The group doesn’t care if I’m wearing pajamas or clothes, or even if my hair is brushed. It’s a come as you are meeting. I went to bed right after my meeting. The next day, I had another meeting with the same group. 5 minutes before the meeting, I realized that I had a very memorable top on. I figured someone would remember what I wore. I changed just the top just before logging on.

A few days later, I had another meeting with them. This time, I’d showered before and was in pjs. At least they were clean pjs. My wet, messy hair was not a concern to anyone. They were more interested in seeing Inky. I have definitely found my group.

This week’s meeting requests

This has been a high stress week for a variety of reasons. I have two just social meetings each week, and I used them to destress. I grabbed the leader of the first one and requested a no politics zone. She thought that was OK, as long as no one objected. It was a nice, stress free meeting.

I also requested the same for the other meeting. Again, it was greeted with acceptance. This group has done it before, so I knew it wouldn’t be an issue.

Discussing politics isn’t a bad thing, but with the chaos that happened yesterday, and the fact that these meetings are for lowering stress, we didn’t need to discuss what is stressful to many.

Next week, I’m sure it’ll be discussed, but, for this week, the group members can blow off steam on social media platforms instead.

Double booking myself

As many of you know, I live by my calendar. If it isn’t on the calendar, it probably doesn’t happen.

My phone had broken, and the replacement phone hadn’t come in yet, so I didn’t have my calendar readily available for a couple of days. I knew generally about what was coming up, but not really specifically.

I needed to get new tires on one car and oil changes on two. I scheduled one car’s oil change and the tire change for the same day and time so my daughter could drive her car in while I drove the other. I worked around her schedule, forgetting to look at my own.

I ended up doing a Zoom meeting for school at the auto repair place while trying to juggle the cars.

I managed this one by the skin of my teeth, but I did. It caused unnecessary anxiety, and I’m hoping to not try this one again. Less stress and anxiety this year, I hope.

Wrapping up 2020

As 2020 comes to an end, here are my thoughts on the things I’ve accomplished.

I attempted a post every day, but I fell a little short at the beginning of the Fall semester. I think I came pretty close, though.

I attempted to post What Are You Reading every Wednesday. I missed a couple, but I came close. This was because once we started sheltering in place, I lost my internal calendar and had no idea what day of the week it was a lot.

I attended online bookclubs when I could. I didn’t finish a lot of the books, but I got to know a lot of the people. I also found out that Inky loves Zoom meetings and usually will sit happily on or near me during them.

I came nowhere near the health and exercise goals this year. It didn’t help that the gym and pool areas were closed.

I exceeded my reading goal of 100 books. When I set the goal, I was expecting to read and review several children’s books, so 100 wasn’t as high as I made it seem. I read 101 books as of December 20, but many of them were read before I hit my slump in March. I managed to get back to it and finish up the year.

I think I did fairly well, all things considered, but I could have done better. Next years goals are set, but I didn’t aim too high. I wanted achievable but not too easy. They’ll be published tomorrow.

Not Being Social

I was invited to a Zoom party tonight. I just don’t think I can do it. I already sent an rsvp saying maybe weeks ago. I’m sensing that I’ve had a few too many meetings. I’m not feeling all that social, especially when it’s just being digitally social.

I’m really more interested in finishing up a book or two. Can I use it as an excuse?

I’m a little nervous that I’ll stop getting invited to things if I don’t go. I think I’m going to have to put that off to the back of my brain for the night, though.

I think that I’m going to finish up my audiobook and make progress on a Kindle book. I may show up on the Zoom party for a short time. I haven’t decided yet. Happy New Year, everyone!