Warnings in April 2008

I had a cool day. I got to meet with Nury Vittachi at the Bookworm’s International Literary Festival in Suzhou. He was easy to talk to, had loads of stories, and was genuinely not self-absorbed. Either that or he did a fantastic job of really appearing to be interested in what I had to say. If you haven’t heard of him, do a quick google on his name. If you have, you remember Traveller’s Tales and his quirky mystery novels about the old geomancer and his sidekick. The guy is all about the fun. He reaffirmed my ambition to keep things light-hearted. His lack of ignorance proved to me that it is possible to keep up with the laughter and at the same time not seem like a circus clown. Ever read his newspaper columns or one of his many books, and you get the idea. It isn’t hard to find something he’s written because the man is prolific. He not only does daily columns, but also has published close to thirty books. He said he didn’t know the actual number but knew that it was up there. Not knowing how many books you’ve put out is something I can’t understand. The man works a lot. It made me think about how much I work. I’ve no idea.

Some people say I work all the time, but I warn them that I don’t really think so. I can’t remember the last time I was home early enough to have dinner. Then again, I can’t remember the last time I was up for breakfast before 8am either. Aside from the occasional vacation, I don’t even take weekends off. Maybe it’s because it often doesn’t feel like “real” work. My brain feels like a bowl of Lanzhou noodles on certain days, but I like getting behind the desk. I often have a better time at work than I do when I’m off. When the people in our office read this, they’re going to think my life is really boring. Does it count as work when I order Sherpa’s and talk about the week to come with my business partner? Or can I only count that as half the total time – half for talking and half for eating? When I dream or have nightmares about work, does that go on the clock? I have no clock. What am I talking about? I don’t get paid by the hour. No wonder it’s hard for me to keep track of it all. Nights stretch, and mornings come early. We badger places to get us their events and sometimes plan them out with the venues. We take gigabytes of pictures, sample strange food, and sit in more taxis than is good for anyone who knows the traffic accident stats. It all gets a little crazy. You know how it goes. You’re getting stuff done on the same ball field that we are. It’s taxing and invigorating at the same time. But spring is here. How I’ve missed ya. Enjoy!

By Tim Hoerle