No, really, I have been boring lately. No drama (well, unless you count the day one of my senior colleagues came into my office to announce that he had nothing to do....as I'm in the midst of slogging through my R&R and the other approximately 10 million things on my to-do list....I am really surprised that I didn't throttle him). No weird student stories (although I do have to say that this year, the grade-grubbers seem to be out in force. Does this have something to do with tenure? Does grade-grubbing increase the closer one gets to the tenure decision?). Just a lot of nose-to-the-grindstone, put-your-head-down and work, work, work.
I wake up at the buttcrack of dawn (I wish I could remember which blogger coined this phrase!) and work; take a break to get myself and Baby Jane ready for school and daycare, respectively; work all day; come home to a bit of family time/dinner/bedtime routine; squeeze in a workout either at lunch or after the bedtime routine; more work, usually multitasked in with household chore type things; collapse in bed exhausted; have problems sleeping; repeat the next day.
I am so damn exhausted right now. But I have to do what I have to do, and what I have to do is get these X projects (or X+1, since I haven't found a way to jettison that extra project yet) done by the end of the month.
And I am making really great progress. I'm through all of the low-hanging fruit edits on the R&R, and about 85% of the way through the intermediate edits. The large edits are tricky, but I'm lucky in that they all have the same theme, so I just need to figure out my overall strategy there and then I can start tackling them (and it *should* go fairly quickly once I get to that point...the trick is getting to that point). I have about two-thirds of the response letter drafted. (I actually start my editing process by outlining the response letter, and making a to-do list as I outline. It's been a lifesaver.) The awesome thing is that the more I revise this paper, the more I'm falling in love with it. I mean damn, it's good stuff! I'm brilliant! ;)
Paradoxically, being insanely busy has also meant that I've been making *more* progress on other stuff that's been languishing. Today I edited a bunch of code (and realized that I haven't done any research-related programming in approximately 5 months---highly unusual for me) and ran a bunch of experiments, both of which have been on my to-do list for *months*. I got all of my recommendation letters out earlier this week. I polished off a service task that's been hanging over my head. And I've even had some time to work on my upcoming classes, reworking some assignments and such.
I am willing to take the tradeoff of being boring if it means that I'm being productive, but I am less willing to trade-off rest and relaxation for productivity. So I need to find a better balance---I need to figure out how to not exhaust and burn myself out in the quest to finish Projects 1 through X(+1). (And I still need to find time to do my holiday shopping! Sigh.)
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A blogger didn't coin the phrase "butt crack of dawn". It's way older than the internet.