Wednesday, April 26, 2006

April 26, 2006
Had a very productive day yesterday, but before we get into that, here’s important feedback from yesterday’s post:

(Brilliant) Insights From A Fellow Male
“For some reason gals always look at us as ‘fixer-uppers.’ In a perfect world they would ‘cherish’ us for what we are & use their ‘fixer-upper’ instincts on something useful... like a '49 Ford!”
—Lloyd Britton

With that said, and I totally agree, I must say, that damn article Kathy read out of Psychology Today really impacted me—in a positive way! Check out my Franklin Daytimer page for yesterday—every single item on the to do list is checked off! For me, this is nothing short of miraculous. Here’s the part of the article that really triggered the productivity:

“There are two basic ways of functioning in the world. There are action-oriented people, who move easily from task to task [not me], and there are the state-oriented souls, who have a lot of inertia—and are most likely to procrastinate [oh, yeh]. State oriented people rate tasks more negatively [yep]; they experience greater uncertainty [ADD anyone?], boredom, frustration and guilt [Lutheran style guilt to boot!] than do their action-oriented peers.

“What helps them. . .is to follow the ten-minute rule. Acknowledge, ‘I don’t feel like doing that,’ but do it for 10 minutes anyway. That gets you over the hard work of initiation. After being involved in the activity for 10 minutes, then decide whether to continue. Once you’re involved, it’s easier to stay with a task.”

The name of the piece is: “Getting Out From Under: How to Stop Procrastinating—Now!”
by Hara Esroff Marano

As you can clearly see on my daytimer, I wailed because I thought, “Hey I can do anything for 10 minutes,” and that broke down the barrier for me. By the way, the boxed As and Bs, are the ratings Franklin-Covey recommends for determining the level of importance of an item on the list. And they recommend an arrow pointing to the next day, on tasks you carry over (don't complete). This is the first day in memory, that there are no arrows, only checks.

Still, I have to agree with Lloyd, if only Kathy would apply this laser sharp acumen to the ‘49 Ford, the world would be such a better place!

More Circ Suggestions
"Been out of town and out of touch for a week but here's one I think would be a fitting setting for your mag. The Landmark Inn, Oberlin Kansas

"Gary Anderson has done a remarkable job of restoring it and making it modernly comfortable without loosing the old charm."
—Sharon Tally

Article Suggestion
“Have you ever considered an article on a ‘day in the life of’? I know, on the surface, it's not captivating but you know better than anyone else the real west, and how it really was.

“Anyway, enjoy reading your stuff and thanks for taking something that fascinated all of us growing up and making it a life's work. I hope to meet you one day and have the chance to visit. You're an interesting guy. I read your biography and I could swear you sat behind me in second period English! (Just kidding).”
—Erin Ford

You are probably not going to believe this, but we talk about this almost every day! It's true. How can we portray the every day life of people in the Old West? Thanks. I will give this some more thought. I am thinking of a cover story on "Working Stiffs" and featuring the many professions, and how they did them, and how much they made, what did they wear? etc.

Another side benefit from cleaning and getting organized is finding cool, but forgotten, art reference. Case in point, I’m doing the Wham Payroll Robbery and in the story is a crazy local blacksmith from Pima, who calls himself “Cyclone Bill,” and I want to illustrate him as a kind of pompous, goofy guy who would probably pose in a grandiose way. So yesterday as I’m filing in my morgue I find some old photos taken for the Razz Revue humor magazine (1972-76) and there’s Dan Harshberger all dolled up as a bad guy. I assume this photo was taken for one of our Old West parody issues (we did two), probably about 1975. Anyway, the pose is perfect for Cyclone Bill and here’s the resulting illustration. This will run in the July issue.

Robert Ray just told me he thinks the photo of Dan looks like a member of Three Dog Night. Ha. It does!

Favorite Onion Headline de Jour
Activities Director Makes Most of Hostage Situation

Coming Tomorrow: "How'd you like to see your face on my dashboard?"

“What helps luck is a habit of watching for opportunities”
—Old Vaquero Saying

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