Tuesday, May 09, 2006

One Thing At A Time

Once upon a time, I was able to multi-task. I could cook dinner, study for an exam, and carry on a conversation at the same time. I took that ability for granted. I assumed it was something I'd always be able to do. Of course there's a major difference between then and now. I was younger then.

I always knew that as I got older things would change. I guess the surprise is the fact that I got older so fast. Just last week I could read a book as I held it in my hands. Now I find myself holding the book out at arm's length. By next week I'll no longer be able to read at all without an assistant to stand down the street and hold the book up in my line of vision.

I've discovered that a lot of people mumble. I have to ask them to repeat themselves. Most bothersome is the fact that I've caught myself leaning toward them, trying to get my "good ear" close enough to pick up their words. It was bad enough when I realized coloring my hair was going to be something I had to do to maintain my natural color, rather than a fun change. But I've come to terms with these things. Almost.

What I'm having a hard time with is the loss of my ability to effortlessly perform mindless tasks with my hands, while letting my mind occupy itself with more interesting things. That's right. I have lost my ability to multi-task. I'm telling you, this loss is harder to deal with than the reality that gravity is really not my friend. I've suspected for some time now that my multi-tasking days may be drawing to a close. After my trip to the bank today I have decided that the end is closer than I thought.

It seemed like a simple plan--an errand I've done many times before. I needed to go to the bank, then to the grocery store. The doctor had written some prescriptions that I needed to have filled at the pharmacy. And then, assuming I could still remember where I live, I would go home.

I made it to the bank without incident. Well, if you consider making it to the bank without getting lost, getting a traffic ticket, or being involved in any kind of pedestrian related accident "arriving without incident" and frankly, I do. Okay, sure I knocked my water bottle over, soaking my grocery list and my jacket, but still, I thought I was doing fairly well.

I pulled into the drive-thru at the bank and with one hand I quickly stuffed my deposit into the canister, pushed the little button and sent it on its way while I used my other hand to attempt to salvage my grocery list. Like I said, so far so good. Or so I thought.



"I'm not sure we can help you with this transaction."

"Why? Is there a problem?" How could there be a problem? It was just a deposit? I'd filled out the deposit slip, endorsed the checks...what else was there? I was at the right bank, right? At that point, I realized the teller was holding something to the window, pointing at it and smirking. I squinted as I tried to see what she was holding up for my inspection.

Oh. Right.

I smiled sheepishly and then laughed. "Um...Yeah. I'm probably going to need those later at the pharmacy," I admitted as I watched her stuff the prescriptions back into the canister.

"It might be best. I can give you a lollipop, though, if that helps."

"Oh, yes. That would be great, thanks!" We laughed a bit more and as I prepared to drive away I saw her talking to another teller and pointing in my direction. Nice.

On the bright side, I'll probably forget all about this little embarrassment as soon as I stumble across yet another way to embarrass by self, which given my record, should be any minute now.

At least she didn't ask if one of my prescriptions was for Aricept. Or perhaps she did. I forget.


Mgt said...

Oh Stacey, that was uproariously funny.

Now you can understand how I feel, with my aches and pains in the joints, which accompany the butter fingers and alzheimer's.

At least you have the added bonus, of a brilliant sense of humour.

Thinking of you a lot these days.

Take care

Mgt said...

Congratulations, Stacey!

Welcome to the new bundle of joy. Please let us know when she is named.

Oooo! Babies!

Stacey said...

I will Mgt, as soon as they come up with one. Son is thrilled to have a new cousin, but somewhat disappointed that it's a girl. Poor kid is getting outnumbered!

Mgt said...

Skuze me, Mizz Utah!

Please could kindly shoot me an email.

I desperately need to tell you about my "bad".


Stacey said...

Certainly Mgt! Incoming.

Anonymous said...

Stacey, I keep trying to hand my "Preferred" Albertson's card to cashiers instead of my Debit card. It's just one of those things!

I was waiting for you to say you'd stuffed your grocery list into the bank tube!

Hi Mgt!

Ronni said...

At least you didn't pour the water on the prescriptions. The pharmacy folk frown on that!

~scourge of the internet

Ronni said...

Certain tasks do not lend themselves well to "multi-tasking."

Brushing your teeth while cleaning out the cat box, for instance. I had to throw away a toothbrush the other day.

~scourge of the internet~

Anne said...

Oh Stacey,

Great sense of humour. I'm 100% with you right now (early forties and experiencing eggsactly the same).

Cheers from Brazil.

Anonymous said...

Stacey, that was so funny and so true! Wait until you start making lists to do common things, i.e., make breakfast, feed the dogs, get the paper, water the garden, etc. Then you have to include remembering to take your grocery list on that list. Also you will make out your grocery list according to the aisles in the store and hope you don't get lost and can remember where the bathroom is in that store...and so it goes.

The other day I got a milk bone from the teller - she evidently saw the kennel in the back. At least you got a sucker!

Luv, GBoo