Life of Riley: Dear diary,

June 23, 1999

Life of Riley

Dear diary,

7.30 Look at diary. 7.45 Get up. 7.47 Check who you are in diary. 7.50 Go to lavatory. 8.15 Breakfast. 8.20 Look at diary. 8.25 Lavatory again. 8.37 Plan day ahead in diary. 8.52 Shower, shave and shampoo. 9.10 Record ablutions in diary. 9.33 Dress. 9.40 Look in diary. Review events of yesterday. (Sundays: review previous week.) 10.01 Drink morning cup of tea. 10.10 Look in diary. Go to same date one year ago and compare events/achievements/personnel/etc. 10.23 Lock up diary. 10.27 Leave house.

Mock me if you will, but there are those like me who value their routines. Where would we be without regularity and the ready embrace of life's many rhythms? Ignore such matters and we'd face constipation in so much of the everyday. Give me careful planning and the good order that goes with it every time. I'm a stickler for the ebb and flow.

But I believe in progress. I do. Consistent effort has its own rewards. Change comes as a blessing, hoped for but always choosing to arrive in its own good time. So, if pressed, I advise patience. Steady as she goes, I always say.

A VOICE: Do you now? And how far do you think that will get you?

MYSELF: I beg your pardon?

— You heard me: how far does patience get you?

Oh, you misconstrue my meaning. My primary argument focused on the need for routine — the ready marriage between habit and rhythm as the core dynamic of the regular cycle of all of our lives.

— Bullshit!

Excuse me!

— Whether you go to the lavatory and then shower, or shower, then go to the lavatory, has not one iota to do with progress. You are simply standing still.

No I'm not! I'm going to the lavatory.

— Ah, but what if you didn't? What then?

The consequences would be unspeakable.

— No. No. Go if you must, but that's not the issue. Do something else with your life!

What? Other than answering nature's call? I doubt if that would get me very far.

— You'd be surprised.

It would gum me right up, I'm sure.

— Seize the day!, that's what I say. Change the world.

Seize the day? Change the world?

— That would really give you something to write about. Everything else is incidental.

What? — 7.30 Look at diary. 7.45 Get up. 7.47 "Seize the day".

— Yeah, now you've got it!

But how do I do that?

— I'm sure you'll think of something.

Dave Riley

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