I didn't finish The Essay last night. But that is only because I remembered that I had to work this morning. I don't think I have ever mentioned my job here before, with good reason: it's boring, unfulfilling, and completley meaningless in the larger scope of my life. I'm a weekend, evening, and holiday receptionist at the local community college, which means that I have developed an excellent phone voice and have come up with dozens of polite ways to inform people that I can't help them, and no, there's nobody who can because it's nine PM on a Friday night before a holiday weekend and all of the professors are at home. Because my job could be done by a machine, I usually do not need to be alert or intelligent in any sense of the words. I regularly come to work half asleep and sick and manage just fine. Most times I don't even have to look particularly nice, since the only people who see me are the security officers and the basketball players. The most challenging part of the job is maintaining the strength of will to sit behind a desk for nine hours at a time without losing hold of my sanity. Today, however, I'm temping for the usual secretary, so I actually had to do challenging and unthinkable things like brush my hair, dress nicely, sleep, and eat before coming to work.
So clearly I couldn't stay up all night finishing The Essay. I'm doing it now, and will have it done by tonight. Then I'll be able to watch House, M.D. and read Dostoyevsky all night without guilt. I remind myself of this every time I feel my resolve failing and my hatred of this paper mounting.