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Are organisational skills a strain of the luck virus? 1, April 2008

Posted by babychaos in Adult Content, General Wittering, Grumpy Old Bag, Life and living, Pregnancy Issues, Small Scale Disasters, whinging, winging.
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Well, at least you won’t have to guess what this post is about. Not too much anyway. It’s about organisation or the fact that achieving a smooth running life actually appears to bear no relation whatsoever to the amount of effort you put into organising it.

I used to watch a comedy TV show called Red Dwarf which is set four million years into the future. One episode is all about luck. The the heroes discover that luck is actually a virus and come across a phial of the stuff.

Yeh, well I reckon organisational skills are kind of similar. Mine only work when I’m planning what I need to do and ordering other people to do the nitty gritty – ie in a job – the minute I personally get involved the wheels fall off big time.

Let me explain…

Once again, I have become an unwitting victim to the pointless tweaking of reality to make life just that little bit more complicated for the rest of us – especially those of us plagued by the bloody chaos fairies the way I am – by the organised tidy bastards. In this case the ones who dick with the clocks, solely, I am certain, to punish disorganised people like me for not being automata such as they.

Why is being organised such a big deal? Why is it in this day and age of equality for all that being organised is considered the holy grail of personal traits ahead of everything else. I don’t punish these anally retentive smeg ends for having OCD and an imagination bypass so what have they got against people like me?

Ok, I’m not organised – I try to be, you know, the way Canute tried to stop the tide – but I’m fighting a losing battle. When I do try to organise my life, you’d be amazed at the lengths I go to to ensure everything runs smoothly and you’d be even more amazed at how consistently I still manage to lurch spectacularly from one crisis to another in a state of perpetual chaos…

Except at work where, by din’t of planning what needs to be done, when and by not actually tainting the process by being directly involved, I was known for my ruthless efficiency.


As you know, I’m pregnant. I am also vague. That doesn’t mean I lack self discipline, it doesn’t mean I can’t – or don’t try to – organise myself, it just means it’s a lot harder for me than it is for any of you. That doesn’t make me dumber or less worthy than anyone else it just makes me different.

So. Every year here in Britain they fuck with the clocks. Twice. First they put them forward in spring, so we get more daylight, then they put them back in winter so it gets dark an hour later. Whatever they say, nobody actually knows why. The official reason given each year is that it’s done so that the kids get to be outside in daylight on their way to school in winter.

Sorry but that’s cock and bull for a start.

It might have been true once but not in my lifetime, not when you have to be in your classroom for registration at 8.30 am and they don’t release you until 4.00 pm.

In the depths of winter here in Blighty, even in the South, it gets light at about half past eight and dark at four so when you’re going to school in deepest, darkest winter you actually do both journeys in twilight and see no daylight, outside break times, at all. So that explodes that theory then.

Trust me, I went to school for 13 years. I know.

On Saturday night, the clocks went back so all of a sudden on Sunday morning, when I woke up, the time that had been 8 am yesterday was 9 am today.

That meant it was time to go round house, checking each and every single piece of electrical equipment, either to move the clock onwards an hour or to press the button to confirm that yes, I notice it has gone forward automatically and yes, I would like to keep it that way.

The most important thing, of course, was my Compaq iPAQ.

This is the machine by which I live and die. I know my limitations, especially at the moment. I’m far too vague to actually remember when and where the legion of health professionals watching over my pregnancy have arranged to see me and that’s why I have an iPAQ to do it for me. I set it to beep at me before each appointment in good time.

Good time being however long I will need to get ready and get to wherever I have to go with whatever equipment, samples etc they require and not be late.

Having turned on the iPAQ on Sunday morning and clicked “yes” on the “all the clocks have changed do you want me to go forward an hour?” button I went to bed on Sunday confident that anything I had scheduled for Monday would not be missed.

Conscious that I had a doctor’s appointment which I’d cancelled and rearranged 3 times, I checked the time and date of that before turning the light out. Wednesday. Good. I relaxed into my cosy covers and slipped gratefully into the land of nod.

Spool forwards to Monday morning and you can imagine how delighted I am when at 10 am, while I am happily hoovering the hall in my pyjamas, the beeper goes on my iPAQ to tell me I have a physiotherapy appointment at 9.30.


It would be physio, these appointments are like fricking unicorn poop.

I check the clock on the iPAQ and sure enough it says 10.00. Even the sodding diary knows it’s 10 but the fricking beeper attached to the diary, the beeper I’m relying on, is still running on Grenwich Bloody Mean Fricking Bastard Time.

Yes. It thinks it’s giving me an ample half hour warning to cycle a couple of miles to my local hospital and not miss my appointment… half an hour ago.


I ring. Yes. I’ve missed it. I get the next available appointment. 23rd April. Yes that’s right, 3 week’s time.


So I’d lay bets a lot of you are more organised then me and your lives run more smoothly BUT. Do you go to the lengths of chaos management I do? I’d bet you don’t. Surely, setting alarms to beep when you have to, get up, again when you have to get ready, when you have to leave and then, finally when you are meant to be somewhere has got to be approaching the outer limits of tidy personesque OCD.

It probably goes beyond… yeh, I’ll bet the most unimaginative anally retentive Bauhaus furnished flat dwelling robotoid doesn’t even do that.

But I’ll also bet, if they do, that the sodding things don’t malfunction like some thousand year old droid with silicone brain rot. And if they do, when they tell other people their plight is met with sympathy and deemed by all to be a very unlucky fault in the machine not, as with me, regarded as a fault in the owner (and greeted with a lecture about being more organised and not checking the machine properly or doing a soft reboot etc etc).

In short. It WORKS for them… and not for me.


Because they have the virus and I don’t. It’s the only logical reason.




1. Mrs. Nicklebee - 2, April 2008

So that’s what it is! A virus. I knew taking all of that vitamin C would come back to bite me!

I am right there with you, BC. My pda died and I used to live by the thing. It took some doing, and a heaping spoonful of humiliation, but I eventually figured out how to use the calendar feature on my mobile. Well, I figured it out well enough not to be late, or worse, for the same appointment every single stinkin’ time.

When you find the virus, be sure to shoot me an email so we can work out some kind of arrangement to have a dose shipped to me.

2. GeekLady - 2, April 2008

I’m too busy being impressed that you still manage to get around via bicycle. I’m 7 weeks behind you and I’ve noticed my morning walk to work has slowed by 5-10 minutes.

3. babychaos - 2, April 2008

Mrs N I am so glad to find I am not alone in my state of pda reliance, my phone is pretty straightforward luckily but the PDA is miles better because I can attach it to a keyboard… waiting until I can do this to an iPhone and my diary/communications/mp3player needs will all be served by one remarkable object…

When I get the virus I’ll lick some paper and send it to you!

Geek Lady… don’t be too impressed, I cycle because I can’t walk! I have to lean right forward and stick my knees out sideways. Strangely this doesn’t hurt the SPD as much as you’d think!



4. Joe Drinker - 2, April 2008

That’s one more reason why I’m glad we live in Arizona…it’s the one state in the US that says “screw you, daylight savings’ time.” We don’t have to run around and reset everything twice a year, which is just one less reason why we should be late to everything, but we still are. I have to find something else to blame.

And kudos on the bike ride…why don’t you hop into that cool little Elise and zip over to the doctor? 😉 Those things are fast enough to make up the time, aren’t they?


5. babychaos - 2, April 2008

Ah Joe I envy you… As for the bike ride… hmm… funny you should say that, I did try but the Elise… she threw a hissy fit! The battery is flat. Grrr!



6. mizscream - 9, April 2008

Hm, you know, I could do with a bit of the luck virus myself. About the organisational (sp?) skills, mine resemble a particularly stubborn unwound cassette tape. Unfortunately still, I’m a student/artist.

Oh well! Good luck and all that, I definitely feel from your point of view.

7. babychaos - 9, April 2008

Hello Mizscream! Welcome and thanks for visiting. I love the tape analogy I can identify! Love your site, too.



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