Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Adult-Onset ADD

“Come on missy, quit wasting time goofing around on Google and IM'ing your buddies!” a stern voice bellows across the kitchen. “Put down your cell phone, stop staring at the television and start paying attention to your assignment!” it scolds.

“Mom!” my daughter continues, “You know you've got a column to write and it's due tomorrow!”

Sydney seems to be enjoying this ironic moment of role reversal as I roll my eyes, fold up my phone and hit delete on my laptop. With so many diversions at my fingertips, I'm fast to get flummoxed and lose focus on my task at hand.

A quick peek at my erratic Yahoo history log for the night and it's clear why my sixth-grader was able to reconstruct the entire Reconstruction Period and solve for “X”, “Y” and “Z” faster than I've been able to come up with 550 words of “funny” for today's paper - and I don't even have to check my math.

Somehow my life has become a case study of “adult-onset ADD”; with a series of unfinished projects piling up - this column being one of them. Lately, I'm so easily distracted, I'm convinced if God really wanted me to get anything done, he wouldn't have invented rapid-response TV remote controls, cell phones with unlimited calling plans or computers with search engines determined to derail me from any long-term train of thought.

Which reminds me, is there even such a thing as “adult-onset ADD”? As long as I'm just sitting here at my computer, I think I'll consult with my medical “colleagues” on WebMD.com. Hey, while I'm on the website, I might as well look up that weird rash…

Oh, look! I just got a text message on my cell phone from my friend Nancy, in New York. I'll just type a little note to let her know that I can't chat right now. I've got a column to write and it's getting late. Anyway, that rumor she heard about Tom couldn't possibly be true. Or could it? Okay, maybe I have time for some key details.

“You've got mail!” my computer shouts for attention. Oh…it's from Stacey! Looks like another funny download. This might take a minute. While I'm waiting I think I'll empty the dishwasher.

“Ding, Ding, Ding” - Dang, it's the clothes dryer upstairs. I'll just run up and pull out a few things before they get too wrinkled. Well, as long as I'm folding - I might as well catch the headline news on TV. Hmmm, it's a commercial; I guess I'll just flip around for a few seconds. Oh, that Discovery Channel show seems interesting - looks like it's some new type of caffeinated liposuction. A little “chai for the thighs”, huh? I've got to remember to look that up on WebMD.com.

Gosh, I still have a lot of socks left to match up. Hey, in fifteen minutes “Celebrity Fit Club” is on VH-1. Wow, check that out! What's the deal with Carnie Wilson? How much weight did she really put back on? Maybe she should consider that caffeinated liposuction. I think I'll go back downstairs and see if there's anything on the internet about her with my computer.

My computer? Yikes! It's already half-passed midnight and I only got half the scoop from Nancy, the dishwasher is half-emptied, I'm missing half the socks, Carnie gained half a pound and yet my column is still completely unwritten.

I wonder if can get my daughter to write my editor a half-hearted medical excuse about “adult-onset ADD”? Let me just Google that…