7 May 2003
I didn't go to WeightWatchers today. About the time I would be getting ready to go to
the meeting, WordPerfect crashed on me. I had been making great headway in the work I had
to do before going to the office. I'd been up since 3:30 and had made a huge dent in the
transcription and fired off the feature article to the editor. Life was looking good.
Then WP decided to go kaplooie.
At first I didn't recognize the problem. It just told me that there was no printer
configured, but it wouldn't actually start the program without a printer configured. NOT
what I needed to have happen today.
I tried restarting the computer a couple of times but got the same result. Then I
did a cold reboot, knowing that sometimes a cold reboot will reset things that just a
restart will not.
But that didn't work either.
Thank god this is one part of my life where I've become, through many such crashes, a
bit organized. I have files which tell what to do in the case of a crash, and which give a
list of all of my preference settings (lots of them), and how to get the quick correct
function to work. (Obviously this happens regularly!)
The problem, of course, was that I couldn't get the program to boot at all, but Word is
my backup, so I called up those programs in Word to remind myself what I needed to do.
This particular problem has not happened before, but I decided to rename the WPCSET.bif
file to something else and try restarting Word Perfect.
(This happened at the exact time when Steve was telling me in IM that he was sending
magic computer fixes through the air, so who knows if it was my expertise, or his magic
I tried restarting WordPerfect, and it all worked! Be still my heart. I was back in
But I'd now wasted a precious hour of time in rebooting, making a backup CD of all
the WordPerfect files in case I had to re-install the program, setting all the preferences
again, and getting all of my stored addresses into the "envelope" function
By the time that was all done, the WeightWatchers meeting was about over. So I just
didn't go. Bad me.
In truth, I wasn't eager to go in the first place. Needless to say (from the past
week's entries), this hasn't been a great time for me. I was thinking this morning about
compulsive eating and stress. I've said before--when I'm stressed, I eat. I was thinking
about how to avoid doing that. Well, there are all sorts of things you can do when
stresssed--you exercise, or just go for a walk, or take a nice relaxing bath. My leader
talks of sitting down with some relaxing music and a cup of nice tea.
Bzzt. Wrong. When the weight of deadlines from 14 different jobs caves in on you, any
of those nice relaxing things just become something that wastes TIME. My brain goes into
this automatic alpha state (I don't know what an alpha state is, but it sounds good) where
I am operating at full tilt, and that includes going out to the kitchen to get something
to put into my face while the computer is rebooting for the umpteenth time and I'm hoping
it will fix itself in time for me to meet the deadline. So I hear the "reboot"
music playing and discover myself standing with hand to mouth--yet again, something in the
hand, a part of my brain not even realizing how it got there or how much has already gone
from hand to stomach.
I'm doing a lot of reassessing in the last couple of weeks. Things are just going to
have to change. I can't keep up this pace any more. It's time to admit that it's dangerous
to my psyche, it's dangerous to my health, it's affecting the healthy lifestyle that I've
been living for the past year-plus. I need to either work an 8 hour day and then come home
and relax like normal people do--doing something other than transcription, even if it's
only cleaning the house--or I need to do the "extra work" during that 8 hour
period. I simply can't do 16 hour days any more.
I may not be flying off to Boise or Houston for the weekends any more, but maybe I can
get back to where I was six months ago and actually start making healthy decisions again,
based on what's good for me, and not just kneejerk reaction to the pressure of overwork.
Now I just have to decide which of my four jobs I'm going to let go of....