productivity and love

Between Don Mills and Sheppard-Yonge Stations

Look at me; I’m being one of those annoying people who busts out a computer on the subway.  But if I don’t get a blog post written quickly (in the space of a trip between Don Mills and Union Stations), it’s not going to get written for several more days.  And I miss you, blog people.  What I need is something copyable and pasteable for when I get home.  This time, transcribing notes scribbled around the edges of a newspaper or back of a rental car confirmation is just not going to work. Even if the post-commute-trying-to-work-out-what-the-hell-that-scribble-was-trying-to-capture adds that much to the nuance of a story.

So, I get a new job, and I give my notice in and the Shit. Hits. The. Fan.  I knew it was going to happen.  This big project has been looming for weeks, and before I get the job offer I’m trying to keep a safe distance from it, because I just know I'm not going to be here much longer.  I try to prep the junior writer, without telling him what’s really coming, “there’s this big, high profile project.  You could really show your mettle here.  Step up to the plate, kid, everyone will love you…”

(Train Change)

Between Sheppard-Yonge and Union Stations

So just as the project is kicked off I get the great job offer and I give my notice.  People at work are wanting to be nice to me and wish me well – to talk about my whole leaving thing.  To take me to lunch.  And I’ve not had much more than ten minutes to take a walk and get a cup of coffee.  But it’s okay – even if I’m leaving in two weeks, I still have pride in what work that leaves my desk. 

That’s where I’ve been the past week.  Sitting at a desk, in an office in North York, hammering out documents like I’m some sort of assembly line Training Guide manufacturer.  Making up for an unequivocally uninterested and unambitious junior writer.  You know the theory, that you just keep banging your head against the wall because it feels so good when it stops?  That’s what all the “It’ll be all over soon, Jennifer” sounds like at this point.  They’re right, but I’m bloody tired and not feeling all that reasonable.

The Good News

I did get some fun in over the weekend – big fun.  Meaningful fun.  My sister blew into the city on Friday for an after work going-away party for a colleague.  It was at a pub very close to my house and we hadn’t seen each other in a month because she’s been travelling with her job, and damned if we weren’t going to take advantage of that opportunity. 

 Cathy E & C Cathy E and C
No, my glass was not larger than hers.  And yes, it was Cathy, not me, who said, "Yay!  I it's a good place that serves wine in a decent sized glass!" 

And next morning my girls and I got on the highway and headed back home to attend the 50th birthday party for one of my oldest and dearest friends, Denis.  Carly drove and Kelsey operated the stereo while I sat in the back and worked – as my sister said, “you can’t sit in a car on the 401 and not be productive at a time like this!  She was right.  For much of the four hours there and four hours back I was doing what I’m doing now – sitting in a moving car with a computer on my lap.

The time away from work might have cost me a little blood and sweat today, but it was worth it.  At times like this, nothing cures the work-overload-blues like time with a sister and a bunch of people who you’ve loved to be around more than pretty much anyone for three decades.

Here's to the "50 Club!  (Debbie, Jen, Denis)

I hope you stick with me blog people.  I’ll be back.  Refreshed.  With a new job and a WALKING TO WORK COMMUTE (have I mentioned that part?). 

In the meantime, I’m back to writing about a healthcare database application.  At least it’s a good cause, no?

ps – Despite the crappy phone camera shots, the pictures are worth a million.


  1. FutureUrban May 31, 2011

    Brilliant pics! I have almost identical job issues at the moment and my blog hasn’t been updated for a while. Must do better.
    Hope the new job is great and being able to walk to work sounds brilliant.

  2. Jennifer May 31, 2011

    Hang in there Alex! We can cheer each other on tomorrow from our respective chains – I mean desks – on opposite sides of the ocean.

  3. Susannah May 31, 2011

    Love the photos. (It is nice to see your smiling face.) x

  4. Jennifer May 31, 2011

    Thanks pal. There was a lot of smiling going on!

  5. FutureUrban May 31, 2011

    Cheers Jennifer!

  6. Susan Tiner May 31, 2011

    I’m so glad you’ll be able to walk to work!

  7. LindyLouMac in Italy May 31, 2011

    Congratulations, a walk to work commute, whenever will you get your posts drafted though. You and your sister look alike 🙂

  8. Selma May 31, 2011

    It makes me happy to know you have such longstanding, lovely friends. You and your sister are both gorgeous but you definitely have the larger glass. Haha.
    I hope you get a bit of time to breathe in the transition to your new job. And by the way, congratulations!!!

  9. Jennifer June 1, 2011

    ME TOO!

  10. Jennifer June 1, 2011

    Ha yes, but then a few years ago when I had a ‘partial’ walk on my way to work, I always found all sorts of inspiration. And then there’s the TWO hours a day I get back! Here’s hoping the stories will be back in force.

  11. Jennifer June 1, 2011

    It makes me happy too Selma. I should say ‘they’ make me happy. No time to breathe in between jobs – but then, there’s that two hours a day! Thanks, friend.

  12. Little hat June 3, 2011

    Nice to see you and your sister together. Are you sure about that glass? sounds like a lively time for you. also sounds excitinfg and that you’re working with it.
    Now about those two hours extra a day……..

  13. Jennifer June 4, 2011

    haha, absolutely sure about the glass! It was a lively and fun between the hours of drudgery. About those two hours a day – one more week til new job!

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