This Nick, That Nick

I ought to be getting ready for work. This isn't an abstract, philosophical imperative. It's a fact. It takes me twelve minutes to shower, four minutes to get dressed, and six to seven to bike to work depending on how many red lights I run.

Yet contrary to all reason, my present self is sitting in a chair, listening to Pinback's new record, and drinking coffee. Present Nick has absolutely no regard for Future Nick. It's as if the two are completely disconnected, severed by an incommunicable gap in time. Despite the full assurance that Future Nick will be stressed, hurrying, running, and breaking minor traffic laws, I could give a shit.

From this vantage, I only see the slight joys of inertia while the future is blurry and indeterminate. Some other Nick has to go to work. Not this one. Not the one that is writing right now. Not him. This Nick is so much more handsome in his comfy pants and big wool socks being used as slippers than commuting Nick. That Nick is cold and screaming at the car in front of him in his head for not bombing through that yellow light.

My eyes are a pair of broken bifocals. They only show what's right in front of me. And every New Year, I resolve to stop hitting the snooze bar. And every year I let myself down. The truth is, I know exactly how long it takes to get to work. My watch is synchronized with the work time clock. I know how long it takes to run at full speed from the parking lot to the time clock. And This Nick refuses to be duped into thinking I have to leave for work a single second before I absolutely must. I can't pretend like I don't know better. Those extra five minutes of West Wing, and letting the water cascade over my tired body until the shower runs cold, and the last sip of fresh coffee are all worth the punishment. All the stress was worth the one extra snooze. They may seem like tiny joys, but they mattered a great deal at the time. This Nick hopes That Nick will understand.

* This post was inspired by my reading of The Thief of Time: Philosophical Essays on Procrastination

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