Jun 222011

(By Dan Simmons)

Balance.  There seems to be a considerable amount of talk about balance these days.  Both California and the federal budget seem to be uninfluenced by the word.  Companies are now looking at resumes to see if a person lists yoga as a hobby, as this promotes balance in one’s life.  Even Madison Avenue is cashing in on our need for balance.

I admit that I struggle to keep balance in my life.  I suspect I am not the only one.  This current trend in today’s job market is so important that I enlisted my entire team to help write this issue’s feature article.  I hope you enjoy this tongue-in-cheek blog about the workaholic’s vacation.

“The Workaholic’s Summer Vacation” by Dudley du Moore

Once upon a time, I was happy toiling away at work.  From early morning until late in the evening I was engulfed, working.  Then my wife, Patience, began to complain at a whole new level about how much I was at the office and how stressed I was.

Luckily, my boss also suspected that I was headed toward a “burnout” and put me on mandatory vacation that Friday afternoon.  I didn’t bother to tell Patience that I was on mandatory vacation; I simply came home and told her that I had been listening to her and that she should get the kids ready because next week we were going to take them to Disney World.  And so the mandatory “vacation schedule” commenced.

Saturday—Mandatory Vacation Day #1

4:42 a.m.—Put finishing touches on proposal for new client, just as the kids dragged me to the car to drive to the airport.

9:00 a.m. —Touched down in Orlando.  The weather was beautiful, and Patience got us onboard the Disney bus.  This was a perfect place to sit, pull out my laptop, and finish that proposal.

9:45 a.m. —Off the bus and checking in at the hotel.  The room has free WiFi.  I can check email from here.  First email is from the Director of Human Resources reminding me that I am not supposed to be checking work email this week.  Clever.  Wish I hadn’t confirmed receipt.

12:00 p.m. —Lunch by the pool with the kids.  I think I will get in the pool after I review the budget for the next big project at work.  Patience seems a little worried that I brought the laptop to the pool.  I told her not to worry, that I had purchased a splash-resistant cover.  She is so thoughtful.

3:00 p.m. —Disappointed that the kids didn’t have much energy left when I got in the pool.  No worries, they can take a nap while I check my Facebook status and let the people at work know what I’m up to this week.

7:00 p.m. —Patience and the kids head down to the lobby to wait for the car so we can head to dinner.  I’ve got at least 10 minutes until they grab the car, giving me plenty of time to make sure no emergency issues came up at work.

7:45 p.m. —Dinner was great.  Leg of lamb and garlic mashed potatoes!  Patience was a bit embarrassed that my iPhone kept ringing in the middle of our meal at the restaurant.  Oh, well . . . people understand it’s business.

9:00 p.m. —Kids head to bed and we put on a movie.  A little email check before the lights are out should make my day a very successful mandatory vacation!

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