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A modern art form

Justin Tardiff | Thursday, October 6, 2005

Procrastinating is the art of getting things done.

I could probably write this column in about 25 minutes, but instead it will take me about an hour. Why is that? Well because I will be doing several things at once.

Will I be doing productive things? Maybe. I will probably check my e-mail at least once, read some away messages and just talk to my roommate. Some may call it procrastinating, but I prefer to look at it as multi-tasking.

Imagine how tedious life would become without these little distractions. How could you go a day without checking the away message of your old high school significant other? And you know that you have a burning desire to browse through your friend’s Webshots just one more time before hitting the books.

Well, I am here to say that it is okay to do these things. Having things to distract us makes life more interesting. Knowing that your favorite re-run of “Full House” will be on in 15 minutes makes the burden of reading the last few pages of Shakespeare a little more bearable.

Nights spent talking and laughing with friends for hours on end in your dorm room may seem to put a wrench in the plans of finishing that novel, completing that project or studying for an upcoming test – but it is worth it.

My personal procrastination peaks when I head off to the library. There is that initial feeling of packing up your books for a long night of studying. You know deep inside you don’t want to, but you must. As you walk down the hallway you look at every door, hoping that one will be open so you can stop and talk to your neighbor. Once you are outside you hope you will run into a familiar face to help put off the studying struggle. When you finally sit at your table and crack open your books, you place your cell phone right next to them, just in case.

At times I have been known to do anything to avoid my homework. I will organize, rearrange furniture or hang up pictures. My roommate and I will even go on a massive cleaning of our dorm room to avoid doing our looming workloads.

So put down that book to call up an old friend, take a walk at 11 p.m. to enjoy one of the last warm nights in South Bend, talk to your friends at the dinner table for 45 minutes after you are done eating. You deserve it.

Little things like these help us to keep sane when we are burdened by books, overwhelmed by our jobs and plagued with projects. So don’t feel guilty about that nap or watching that episode of Oprah. It will keep you sane and grounded, especially during this season of midterms and projects.

On a final note, if you made it this far, I would like to thank you and point out that just as I have procrastinated by writing this article, you too have just procrastinated by reading this article. All I ask is that you don’t take it to the next level, and resist the ultimate art of procrastination: the urge to look me up on the Facebook.