1572-02 (03573 dist, 3.6 mean)
Selected-By: Ian Davis
The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply.
Your question was:
And in response, thus spake the Oracle:
> I have a list of some 314 things that I absolutely must accomplish by
> the end of the day today. The minimum time required for any of them is
> ten minutes. Some of them require unbounded time, and several require
> hunting up or developing tools (software, hardware, hammerware, etc.)
> from unknown locations.
> If we were to assume that each task took only ten minutes, then 10*314
> is 3140 minutes, which is about 52 hours.
> We have not even included the time required for eating, brushing
> teeth, checking e-mail, or asking questions of my Favorite Internet
> How can I possibly get everything done? The usual suggestion is,
> "Delegate," but I delegating to myself takes extra time and
> self-criticism. I've already shot myself in the foot for being so
> inept. What should I do next?
} As Einstein once said, "procrastination is like a black hole, both
} are attractive, but only one will make spaghetti out of you".
} Taking a leaf out of Einstein's book (he was once an amateur
} botanist), we can solve your problem using basic mathematics. We know
} that in 4.5 billion years or so, the Earth will be destroyed by the
} sun becoming a red giant. Thus, if you haven't done everything by
} then, it no longer matters.
} We can reduce the limit by noting that in 100 years time, you will be
} dead anyway, and it will no longer matter. Sorry if this is a shock
} to you; I'll give you some time to let this sink in. There, that
} should be long enough. The point is that your arbitrary limit of "by
} the end of the day" is meaningless in the grand scheme of things.
} Firstly, make a list of all the jobs that you have been asked to do
} by people older than you. These can clearly be ignored as those
} people will die before you, and not realise that you have no
} intention of ever doing them.
} Secondly, make a list of jobs that are so important that someone else
} will jump in and do them before your not doing them becomes a
} problem. Ignore these as well.
} Thirdly, make a list of all the jobs that are so easy that someone
} less skilled than you could do them. These are clearly not worth your
} time and energy, so the person who gave you these jobs clearly hates
} you. These jobs can be ignored.
} Fourthly, make a list of jobs that are too hard for you to do. The
} person who gave you these jobs is clearly a moron who is unable to
} delegate properly. These jobs can be ignored.
} There should now be precisely one job left on your list. Just
} remember that water flows downhill.
} You owe the Oracle a PowerPoint presentation on how to procrastinate.