See Saw Margery Daw.

The see-saw: playground fun, or converted medieval warfare apparatus?

Whenever I reach more than 50% completion on any phase of any project, it’s as if I just finished walking up one side of a seesaw. For that entire first half of the trip, you can actually convince yourself that this is a static system you are climbing. And somehow, like climbing a mountain, you’ll reach the top and have time to look around and enjoy the view.

The truth is much more terrifying in my experience. I reach that halfway point, and I realize that just like a seesaw, this is the most unstable moment in the life of the project. The whole board has to flip to the other end, hopefully without flipping me onto the playground gravel at the same time. And what the project needs and what you can give it are not always in agreement. Do I need to balance here for a short spell, or do I need to move as quickly as possible and run to the other end before I fall off? The project might need to pause, but I may not have the time to wait. I might need to hurry, but doing so could snap the project (and me) in half.

So that moment is always tricky for me, because before the half-way point, it’s still just an idea that might get finished someday. I rarely even consider that part work. Once I’ve crossed that line, though, I have to finish it. The weight of it all shifts in my head and I (mostly) careen downhill to the finish. Sometimes, it’s graceful. Okay, it’s very rarely graceful. But it’s always fun, even when it isn’t.

The terrifying thing right now? I have, let’s see . . . one, two, three, four, five . . . at least five projects that are all hovering right around this spot, and at least two of them are going to end up tipping over at about the same time. Oh well. I don’t really enjoy leisure, and there’s nothing on TV anyway.

See Saw Margery Daw,
Jacky shall have a new master;
Jacky shall earn but a penny a day,
Because he can’t work any faster.

I just don’t want to end up like Jacky. He sounds rather lazy and unproductive.


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