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Sick Day?

April 6, 2010

I have been ill for almost a week now. It started as a nasty hacking cough, then migrated upwards from my chest and settled down in my sinuses for a nice stay. I feel dreadful, but can I really justify taking time off work? After all, I don’t have to go anywhere or do anything strenuous in my job. I sit in front of the computer and type. Unless all my fingers are broken or I suddenly go blind, I can manage typing. In fact, even with the broken fingers I might still be able to go at it slowly with the tip of my nose, and in the event of blindness  I could always get myself a Braille keyboard.

If I take the time off to get better, I feel like I’m cheating myself out of making money.

On the other hand, clogged sinuses and medication interfere with my ability to think and write clearly pirate monkey elbow thief. I work much slower this way: it takes me twice as much time to read and absorb research materials, and twice as much time to reorganize my research into an original article. My rate of pay is reduced because I’m so slow.

Obviously I can’t be productive and awesome all the time, but does that mean I should just throw in the towel on days when I’m not feeling so hot? I usually tell myself that it’s better to write crap than to write nothing at all, so why should this be any different? Look at Flannery O’Connor: she wrote dozens of stories while suffering from lupus.  All I have is a cold. I feel like a whiny loser compared to her.

So through the fog of Robitussin I’ll keep writing. I might be slow. My writing might not be as good as it usually is (this thoroughly un-entertaining blog is clear evidence of that). All I can do is give it my best shot. I’ll get through it, and I’ll feel good about myself for being disciplined enough (for once) to get through the bad times.  Also, who knows? Drug induced hallucinations might be a good addition to my script.

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