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Caffeine + lit papers = hilarity: a tried-and-true equation

April 12, 2007

Around this time last year, I took myself, a few books, my laptop, and a venti coffee to the school library at midnight in order to write part of a paper for my English Renaissance class. I found an effective way of ignoring my procrastination was to open another document behind my paper and keep a log of stray thoughts as I wrote. I reproduce it here for your edification and amusment, and for my own proof that I continue to finish my final papers every semester – even the ones that looked like Titanic-sized wrecks at the time

11:58: Mrs. Potter Lullabye is an excellent song that goes on too long. What aren’t you talking about Counting Crows? I took my own group study room (there’s maybe 10 people on the entire sixth floor) so I could play my iTunes as loud as I want. IN THE LIBRARY.

11:59: I’ve got to pee already? I haven’t even finished the venti part of my coffee!

12:07: No really. Going to the bathroom now. It’s too bad that I can’t a good outline going.

12:16: I can’t write anything with a decent beginning point. I can’t focus. ARGH.

12:35: iTunes has randomly brought up “The Shape of Things to Come”. Oh I love it. And this table is a bit more wobbly than I would like it, but maybe it’ll keep me awake. …. damn, this table is REAL wobbly.

12:42: Again? I need to pee again? Lame deal, coffee.

12:49: Out of nowhere, I want to comment on how awesome Cameron was on House today. She is totally off my “you’re on notice” list and back on the “characters Taylor would like to greedily claim as identifying with” list. I would also like to comment on the generally awesome of House overall this week. That is all.

12:56: I’m getting to that really sweet part of the caffinee high where I can’t remember what the last sentence I wrote was, but I KNOW IT’S AWESOME. I AM ALMOST AT TWO PAGES ALREADY. WHO’S PROUD? I AM.

1:12: I am kind of rocking this. And teo leo is helping me with his rocking beats. yes, it is 1 o clock in the morning and I am rocking out to ted leo in the library writing about early modern english women writers. I like this better than my usual procrastination-filled “Oh god what have I gotten into rants” I usually devolve into at this point in paper writing.

1:31: Short term plan: dance a little to Sufjan’s “Dear Mr. Supercomputer”. Long term plan: Write until 5:45 a.m. walk home. Fall asleep for 6 hours. Get up. Rinse. Repeat.

1:34: The placeholder title is “Bears on a plane! The Not-(Philip) Pullman Edition!”

1:42 – I am warming up to Neko Case. Please tell me somebody has her songs on Itunes in this library.

1:46 -Coffee is not completely cold yet. Thank god for small favors.

1:53 – Two hour mark (or so): official double spaced count = 2 2/5 pages. Technical victory! Re-attack at 2 a.m.!

2:22 – Excellent true stories of Gelman Library: The janitor lady is singing along to gospel hyms from her iPod. And there’s this girl on the 5th floor who has been talking on her cell phone for at least an hour now. Also, the great thing about being in a library is that when you have sudden need to look up a book (say Reading Lolita in Tehran) you just go to a computer, write down a number, scare a med student studying half to death when you gleefully skip down an empty stack of books to find exactly what you’d been looking for ten minutes ago. The Library: best form of instant gratification at 2 in the morning? Discuss.

(too bad the circulation desk is closed until 9 a.m.)

2:30 – I am strangely not including “an” s where there should be. Why does this part of English decide not to work on overtired caffinee allnighters?

2:54 – I like where I’m going a lot, it’s just that the wording sucks right now. Three hour mark official double spaced count: exactly a page more than before. (but I am starting to lose it).

2:59 – Dude, is it extra dark at 3 or something?

3:03 – Jamie Cullum’s cover of Frontin’ is so excellent, if only for the drum-piano solo in the middle..

3:05 – OMG, another great cover: “Walking in Memphis” by Cher (or at least I think Bryan what’s-his-face did it first).

3:15 – sentences no longer forming. Must let settle in brain. (rinse, repeat). People in library giving me funny looks (hey, you’re here TOO). Time to go.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. April 12, 2007 5:13 am

    early modern english women writers! i adore englishmajoring. and you. miss youuuuuuu

  2. Mrs. Brown permalink
    April 12, 2007 6:44 am

    Hi Tay! You’re always thinking. Good solution to procrastination. I loved reading your thoughts and musings!Can’t wait to see you. Love Mom 🙂

  3. Aunt Ri permalink
    April 13, 2007 3:21 pm

    I always felt that perhaps libraries were just about the best places on earth – now I’m sure of it!!!

  4. April 14, 2007 6:54 pm

    It is worth noting that when I wrote my first final paper for Vann that there were in fact people still on the fourth floor with me when I left around 4:30am. That was a personal highlight.

    Oh Gelman! How I do miss thee and thy beauteous Starbucks and thy righteous twenty-four-hour dominions! *weep*

  5. December 14, 2008 11:47 pm

    I had never read this. I think I may try this tactic as a means of keeping myself on track.


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