I’m coupling my Weekly Rowing column with workspace infrastructure updates. My primary focus will be improving my “judgement free zone” office I’m calling “Zeal,” because just like how exercise improves your internal motivation and physicality, tidy workspaces improve your external motivation and productivity. Clutter in body, mind, or space can prevent action, so let’s start with the heartbeat of this whole operation: my whiteboard. “Always on,” it’s a constant reminder to check the next box.
“Ahhh!” The alarm sounded just before the killer struck. “Oops! Forgot to take out the trash. Better get to it now. I’ll run out of time again in the morning…” She paused the movie on a disturbing still, dragged the trash can to the door, put on a heavy coat and boots, placed her keys and mace in her right coat pocket, grabbed the trash bag with her left hand, and left her comfortable apartment.
Let’s continue the worldbuilding from last week’s brainstorming update to “The Story” with how manufacturing in Trishna (left) and John’s world might look. Their world doesn’t stray too far from reality. Most of the same comforts are generated from industries, meaning the hardest labor work is automated, and it’s fairly easy to live a decent life. Maybe not luxurious, though in comparison to famine and disease? Could be much worse. Let’s explore in more detail.
Spoiler Warning Scale: Minor (specific location details about their world)
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I will never forget those crazed blue eyes. Walking past the uncharacteristic fast food place, between the affluent shopping mall and the uptown library, this piercing creature jumped out at me. “Why are you following me? Why?!” Something snapped inside his poor mind. “I am not following you. I do not know who you are and I am not following you.” For fear of personal safety, I couldn’t break eye contact. He wouldn’t let me.
Let’s say you’re a pretty good football player. You know the sport, you’re fit, train constantly, and show up to every game. You decide to join up with a new team. You meet with the coach to talk about sports, fitness, training, and end up rambling on about dreams and hobbies. It turns out well. You hop aboard this new team. There’s just one problem. You’re a football player and they need a football player.
We’re living such fast paced lives that when we get any opportunity just to relax, it almost seems we take it too far with relaxation compensation. What would just be moments of recreation turns into hours, days, or lifetimes spent doing nothing particularly productive. Years ago, I could do “nothing” all day. Now, I’ll find something to do if I’m idle more than 15_minutes. I’ll do something physical, nap, or as I’m doing now: write.
I gained 5.7 pounds since last week. How is that even possible?! It was probably stress, decreased exercise, overeating, and general malaise over the last few days. That regresses my progress at least a month or so and probably isn’t healthy. Fortunately, the weight’s dropped off a little since yesterday, so it probably won’t last too long. Just goes to show quickly this health thing can change. At least I’ve made good progress in some areas.
“We thought he was with you!” The suave, unkempt man had seen through another magician’s tricks and narrated each step of the trick. He traveled the world, going to cool shows, and “usually, you can get cheap tickets the day of the show. I got these two for free.” After realizing what was going on, I asked the scalper: “How do you pick your marks? What traits do you look for?” He left. Here’s why:
That blue slime ball was too close for comfort! How I, retiring Detective Peaceknife, got into another para-predicament like this, with this overwhelming mind-controlling beast, was beyond me. It all started with some dame walking into my office, dropping off a case to find her missing husband, and some glasses. “You’ll need these to see them.” Well, babe, I don’t need these things to see the acidic vapors eating away the concrete at my feet.
Years ago, somewhere, I’d heard that whereas Americans will consider their occupation as a defining characteristic of their identity in introductory conversation, Europeans might only eventually bring up their occupation. That cultural difference was fascinating. I can’t find any source, so excuse that, though I have met many zealous career-oriented individuals. How about in the world of “The Story?” How much identity do Trishna (she’s briefly able to stand) and John place in their gigs?
Spoiler Warning Scale: Minor (background information and overall worldbuilding ideas)
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