I realized this week that I have become the coworker who talks obnoxiously about waking up early. It is great. (You should wake up earlier.).
Aristotle has written more persuasively and interestingly about the virtues of habitude and rigor than I ever will. All I know is that I started 2018 waking up early because it was the only thing I could do to impose some sense of control and gestalt over a world that seemed devoid of both, but I am ending 2018 waking up early because it feels right and natural and the way to tap into some better universe, one populated by those who have figured out more things than I have.
My darkest secret is that my morning routine sounds like a satire of productivity blog posts. I wake up at 5.30, immediately chug pre-workout (think caffeinated Kool-Aid and you’re in the right ball park) and a kale smoothie, and then do the following things:
That jumble of jank usually takes an hour, at which point the pre-workout has kicked in: I go run to the gym for an hour, come back, make a quick smoothie, jump in the shower, respond to texts, then bike to work.
It’s insufferable! I know! But it works for me, and you find the things that work for you and you cling to them.
Weekends, though, tend to be a little lazier. For instance, today I slept in until 9 — a relatively meager sleep, as I was out until around 3 — and then hastily packed most of my belongings into a matching olive weekender and duffel bag to head to Florida for four days to see my family.
The flight was canceled (or, accurately, delayed eight hours), which is a thing that happens. I am always faintly embarrassed by folks that get angry when Airplane Things Happen. What is accomplished by anger?, I think to myself, as I pull up the easiest way to get to Fort Lauderdale (a direct on Alaska eight hours later), wait to get my ticket, then head home from SeaTac for an afternoon spent mostly couch-bound. (I was a little hungover, both in the literal and figurative sense. December has been a lot.)
Next week I’ll write something broader about 2018: the books, the work, the endless of funnel of effort and content — years are arbitrary but arbitrary things have power. I am thinking about where I was last year and where I am today, and I have lost weight and can run further and have the best job I’ve ever had, and it is easy to think of small things — ways to become more like sculpture, to eke out a more marble existence — that need to be done. I want to publish more poetry; I want to make Buttondown more sustainable; I want to have fewer Saturdays spent idle. (Or, to quote 2013 Justin, I want to write more and read more and then everything else tends to fall into place.)
But I also want rest. I want to board a flight that makes me right into my parents’ arms, and I want four days of mirth and sandals. There are parts of me that have grown, and there are parts of me that know I will never surrender the privilege of waking up somewhere hearth-like, with people who have already put the coffee on — with people who know exactly who you are, and exactly how to find you.
<3. Especially if you are spending the next week or so alone.