Cirencester Scene February 2017

What You Need Is A List – by Selwyn Morgan


‘What you need is a list!’

‘I think you’re right, love. I get up with ten things in my head, nine of which I forget. Then I think of nine new ones. Then I forget eight of those.’

‘You need to write down what you’re going to do each day so that you have a plan.’

‘Right… I don’t see you doing that.’

‘Of course I do, I’m a teacher! My day is planned right up until the janitor chucks us out.’

‘But it’s not a list. A list has got numbers and it’s very scary knowing you have to start at the top and get to the bottom.’

‘Stop it…. you, need to write a list. It’s not asking much.’

‘But what if I get good at writing lists, and then do what’s on them?’

‘That’s the general idea about having a list.’

‘But, I’d soon have nothing to do… not even write a list.’

‘I can’t stand around talking nonsense with you, I’ve got a class to teach. That OFSTED inspection has been imminent for the last two years and it might happen this term. Write a list!’

She’s right of course, but disciplined planning was never my strong suit. If my working life was likened to a marathon, I would have been the one dressed as a headless chicken. Don’t get me wrong, it was great fun, when at work, running and bumping into other nutters on the way, not expecting to get to the finish line any time soon. Then you stumble over it…

OK, now let me think, I still have my chores. That’s items one, two and three.  I cook, and I’m quite good at that: Find the slow cooker, item four; prepare ingredients, item five; switch on slow cooker, item six? That’s rubbish, switching on a slow cooker can’t be an item. Switch on slow cooker and watch it; now that’s a proper item… seven.

I would vacuum, and I do vacuum, when prompted, but the Dyson wasn’t mentioned, so it’s not on the list. ‘Clean up after the cat.’ That was mentioned. I’ll make it item twelve. I like the ‘man things’ to do, such as light bulb changing or fuse replacement, and I have a cupboard full of ‘blokey’ things. They remind me of times when I worked in a proper job; oh, and that further reminds me, the three amp fuses are all used up. I was going to buy more, but forgot. Item eight on the list… There is only so much fixing that can be done before things are all fixed, and they stubbornly stay that way… short of sabotage… now there’s a thought! I could occasionally, accidentally like, break things and then add them to my list of things to do!

That’s enough list making for now. I need a cup of tea, as I’m a bit exhausted from all the effort.  I know, I’ll ‘catch up’ on ‘Radio iPlayer’. I fell asleep and missed the Archers yesterday, just when it was getting exciting. No need to put that on the list.