Multitasking

June 18th, 2008

I really have no business writing a post right now; I should be going to bed, like most normal people do at 2:16 AM or before. And mostly what I want to do is lie on my back in a cool room with my eyes closed and listen to some of my favorite music. As a former (and probably future) choral musician and semi-professional classical singer, I love, love, love choral and opera music. I recently created a list of all my favorite classical vocal music and when I listen to it, as I have been this evening, I become more and more excited with each successive song – thinking “Oh, I love this song – how wonderful to be able to hear it!” each time the track changes and I’m brought ear-to-ear with an old favorite. Songs like “En etsi valtaa, loistoa” and “Hine e hine” make me feel like I’m being rocked to sleep, while “What shall we do with a drunken sailor?” and “Salmo 150” and “Chorny Voran” make my heart beat with wild energy. I love the soaring high notes of the Barber “Agnus dei,” the movement of Holst’s “Nunc dimittis,” and the quiet simplicity of “Moi si j’avais commis” and “Couronée d’etoiles.”

So of course I can’t listen to this playlist while I work, because I constantly get distracted and start at least thinking, if not singing, along. I discovered a while back that I’m a terrible multitasker; I’m not very good at working on several different tasks or projects at the same time, and I prefer to completely finish one task before I start the next one. (One reason I’m not much of a phone conversationalist is that I have to shut the rest of my life down while I’m on the phone, unlike most people I know – I can’t cook, drive, or [insert other simple/menial task here] if I’m engaged in conversation.) I fear this bodes ill for my future as a mother. When a friend was visiting recently, I was amazed at her ability to pay attention to two demanding toddlers and still carry on a discussion, and doubt I’ll ever be similarly able. Of course, as I was informed on Saturday by someone to whom I am water (he is oil), women are better at multitasking* because they take care of the children, so perhaps I shall be magically endowed with this ability at some future date. Until then, I think I’ll enjoy my one-track existence. If you need me, I’ll be lying in the dark, listening to my magic playlist.

*Men are better at directions and reading maps. It’s been proven. They had to evolve that way, you see, because the men were the hunters, chasing after their quarry and potentially getting lost, because panicking animals don’t always choose the most logical way to get from point A to point B.


2 Responses to “Multitasking”

  1. Dave on June 18, 2008 8:28 am

    To be fair, men don’t always choose the most logical way to get from point A to point B either.

  2. Joanne on June 19, 2008 12:49 pm

    🙂 This was a delight to read. Not only because I share a love for your taste in music, and have similar problems with getting to bed at a reasonable hour (last night I walked around my room listening to various sound-tracks until 11:30, and each time hitting the back button to listen to it again reminding myself it would be the last time…right!) BUT also because I was there when we were told about our superior multi-tasking abilities! I think you should have a handle on your website for our friend: How about “Olive Oil” since he also works at an Italian restaurant?

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