The death of trees and day-planners

Before I start my column, I’d like everyone to participate in a moment of silence out of respect for trees that lost their lives in the name of SA elections. Thank you.

Don’t you love those elections? For several days, we are transformed into the same type of people who stand outside J Street distributing flyers for clubs that offer live kickboxing and free beer, or some other exciting activity. In order to enter the Marvin Center, you must run the gamut of goons waving colorful pieces of paper in your face and urging you to vote for their candidate.

(Note for next year’s campaigns: Screaming “Vote for So-and-So for Executive Grand Poobah of Something-or-Other in people’s ears as they walk by will not endear you to voters).

Hey, if I wanted that, I’d have gone to Mardi Gras. At least maybe I’d have gotten some beads or nudity or something out of the craziness. However, I live in a constant state of craziness. It’s a good thing; everyone should try it.

Step one: Get rid of your planner. You know, that thing in which you try to write all your homework, appointments and general stupid stuff.

That’s right, rip it up, set it on fire, throw it out. They are one of the many things that force us into normal lives. Normal is boring. Besides, I think we are just fooling ourselves. How many of you still are using the student planner GW handed out at the beginning of the year? They’re free, which is a great thing, and I have done a lot on the “List of 101 New Things to Do At GW.” (I have yet to be a White House intern, eat every single item on the menu at Friday’s or jump off Key Bridge.)

Anyway, I think I used the planner for the first half of last semester – and then threw it out the window before midterms when it depressed me to look at the work I had to do. I felt a great weight lifted off my shoulders.

Other people opt for organizers with pretty pictures, thinking that while they admire photographs of the Rockies or art by Monet, they’ll actually take the time to organize their lives. These are cooler than the student planners, but you must buy them. I took that route once. I felt bad defacing the notebook, and it too ended up out the window. I did save the nice pictures, though.

Then there are those who tote really professional planners – DayRunners, or as I prefer to call them, DayRuiners. Well, it’s true. These are for the really anal, or those who think they are. I probably ticked off a lot of people with that statement, but hey, you know I’m right.

People get attached to these things, probably because you could hire a personal secretary for the price of one – the faux-leather kind with your schedule planned to the minute.

Example: Today, March 5, 1998, 1:34.56 – Go to the bathroom. 1:36.21 – Wash hands before returning to work. These models are the easy-to-carry size, like your average Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary. This is the type most likely carried by SA folks. It makes them look important.

My friends who own these know never to leave them unattended while I’m around because then they’ll find things like, “March 5, 4:30 – Shave yak,” or “November 13 – Invade Myanmar.” It really throws them off.

I say, go back to the basics. Use the back of your hand to write down appointments, or maybe you could depend on your memory. It works. See, no killing trees.

Or if you really have to kill trees, do it on a small scale. Post-it notes. And they come in festive colors! Whoever came up with the stick’um on the back must be rich. I wonder what kind of planner he has.

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