Vol. 6, Issue 9, September 30, 2008
Think Difference (Engine).

This Slow Day Moved Along with Astonishing Speed

Ezekiel F. Watley, Esq.

As I sat down to my Desk this morning, a crisp autumnal Breeze wafting through the open bay Window (bringing with it, I must admit, a regrettably strong whiff from the Horses parked out front), I found the pile of Correspondence and Editorial Paper-work rather Daunting, for once. Truth be told the warm and welcoming silver Coffee service was much more Inviting, and I cheerfully partook of the excellent Brew set before me by my faithful secretary Elisabeth. I find the Coffee particularly Rich this morning; it would surely be a Shame to accord it any Disrespect by Multi-Tasking. A brew such as This deserves my Full Attention. And thus I make sure to attend Properly to the pot, until it is gone.

The pile of Papers beckons afresh, having (what's more, and to my Dismay) grown a good Inch during my caffeinated Reverie. Hmm. Well, the morning cannot Truly begin without a good pipe; everyone knows That. And so to the Pipe-rack upon the Mantel, there to select the day's implement of choice: cherrywood? Meerschaum? This is no light decision! - It merits a good Ten minutes of consideration. But as to the next step - horrors! The tobacco-tin is very nearly Empty! Well, not so much Empty as severely Depleted. It is true that I could doubtless fill my Pipe with what remains, but surely it would be the very Height of Irresponsibility to leave such a situation unremedied. Quickly now: hat and Coat, and off to the Tobacconist!

The trip to the Tobacconist, across the Street, is eventually Successful, though an unanticipated Conversation with Jeremiah Peabody concerning the Election has added a neat Hour to the errand. (Peabody simply Will Not accept that facial-hair plays a Very important role in presidential Politicking, alas.) By the time I return, it is very nearly time for Luncheon. Well, not precisely Luncheon, but it does so happen that I tend to Spill a bit of the tobacco whenever re-loading the Tin. As is, confound it, the case To-day; which occasions an extra half-hour for the Clean-up. Now: to Business. Which is not the pile of Letters upon my desk (now supplanted by several Tele-grams in alarming Yellow) but rather to my Pipe.

Some pipes, of course, can be smoked while one Works, jauntily poking from the corner of one's Mouth as one pores over Correspondence, humming a Tune. However, the pipe I happen to have chosen today is not one of These - it is rather a Doughty and Serious affair, with a deep carved Mahogany Bowl that demands one's full attention. Regrettable, but: the choice is Made. I have no choice but to sit in proper Contemplation as I finish the pipe. And then, the Shipman's Clock in the hall strikes the noon hour. Luncheon indeed; business shall simply Have to wait.

Returning to my Office at four-thirty in the Afternoon, I cannot help but think that not a Few days have proceeded in Like fashion. The pile is ever Deeper upon my desk, now containing a Fresh pile of to-day's Mail and, if I am not Mistaken, a Duck (most Likely placed there as a result of one of Ephram's schemes). I have no time to interrogate the aquatic avian, that much is Sure, and I shoo the little fellow off my Desk. It does not, alas, waddle obediently into the News-Room as I intend, but instead takes Umbrage at my approach (why, I cannot say - I have ever been a Friend of Nature) and takes Shelter under the Globe. I do my Best to dislodge it with a Walking-stick, but only succeed in Driving it into the Map Collection. It is a round three-quarters of an Hour before my efforts in anatidae crowd control Succeed, and I can close the Door on the ruffled Tail-feathers of the aquatic interloper.

What! - Tea-time has very nearly gone! Well. There is at least time for a compensatory Scotch. Or two. Especially as I can now See that the papers upon my Desk are in such Disarray that it would take the better part of an Afternoon to sort them all Out again, much less Deal with them Accordingly. Thus, I straighten the piles as best as I can before donning my Second-best silk hat and retiring for the Evening. I cannot say that this has been my most Productive day ever. But thinking back upon many Days spent actually sorting Through the papers, I must confess that today has not been my Least productive, either. At least I got rid of the Duck.

I say, why is the news-ticker machine quacking?

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