Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Under Pressure

The temperature outside today nearly matched the temperature under my collar this afternoon. Depending on which weather report one checked, Austin reached 103 degrees today. I knew my day was booked with meetings and had carefully planned my day to be prepared for them. I had not carefully planned for the meeting location to change after the meeting originally was scheduled to begin.

Flexibility - always good.

That four hour meeting today was, in part, to provide information for my portion of a grant proposal. It was a very productive meeting and I left confident I would easily be able to write a very good piece and fit it within my length constraints.

I was just down the street when my boss's boss's boss calls my cell to inform me that the piece was due thirty minutes previously instead of in two days as I thought, and that I only had one-half page in which to fully cover my topic. Because the office "liked" me they were giving me another half hour to write the piece.

I was in my car.

I was in rush hour traffic.

I had a three page draft.

I had a thirty minute deadline.

My gas gauge was showing empty.

First things first. I stopped to get gas.

The radio reported over a dozen accidents being worked at the time. I'm really glad I had turned my satellite radio off and was listening to NPR's All Things Considered at the time. Otherwise, I would have been stopped in two diffrent traffic jams. Fortunately I was able to negotiate my way around the traffic tie-ups and make it home rather quickly.

Fifteen minutes later I called the grant office and my boss's boss's boss to report that I had completed and submitted the half page. There are two stylistic changes I would like to make after re-reading it an hour later, but other than that, all I can say is, "Damn! I'm good!"
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