Saturday, January 24, 2009

Taking a Cue from Ima on (and off) the Bima

To those of you who know me (or have heard my I-was-a-NFTY-flight-chaperone-in-Eastern-Europe-and-my-luggage-never-showed-up saga), it will come as no surprise that I carefully plan things in advance, always like to have my ducks in a very straight line, and frequently don’t do terribly well when things veer (even ever so slightly) from “the plan.” To elaborate just a bit, I’m extremely focused and motivated, proudly hold the title “Queen of Lists” (gleefully crossing off the tasks as they are completed), and take great pains to show up on time if not early to work, school, wherever... At the same time – unlike most Type A personalities – I am not an Academy Award-winning multi-tasker (I can’t talk on the phone and do much of anything else well at the same time).

And so it is that I’m spending time this weekend researching flights from New York to Tulsa for a friend’s wedding in the middle of March. But it’s not just any weekend in the middle of March. It’s March 21, which is three days before Tuesday, March 24, the day of the midterm exam in Economic Analysis and Public Policy, one of the two graduate courses in which I’m enrolled this semester at behemoth Baruch, the school that drives me crazy. Given my self-admitted Type A personality, neither will you be surprised to learn that I’m a serious student, spending lots of time -- not all of it positive, I freely admit -- devoted to schoolwork and trying to balance the rigors of the academic world with a full-time job, a social life and, sometimes, The Schmuck Parade. In fact, both my sister and a good friend recently told me that, with the start of the spring semester just days away, “It’s time to batten down the hatches." (Yes, I’ve already requested March 20, 23 and 24 as vacation days, scribbling “out-of-town wedding and midterm exam” on the required paperwork. And, if I could, I’d start studying for the exam this weekend, but since the semester doesn’t start until Monday, that just isn’t an option – even for me.)

Instead, I’m going to take a cue or two, or seven or 29 or 362 from Ima on (and off) the Bima. Although I don’t know “Ima” personally, we do work in the same crazy Jewish world, are friends on Facebook (with 13 mutual friends, which, although not a huge number, is a good Jewish number nonetheless) and follow each other on Twitter. I read her blog, Ima on (and off) the Bima, and, from time to time, her other one, too. From all this e-info, I know that Ima is a married working mother of three young (and quite adorable) kids who, if I had to guess, doesn’t require a whole lot of sleep. She does however, teach, preach, read (81 books in 2008), write, parent, take lots of photos, cook, bake (she recently made a cake that looked exactly like an iPod nano!) and oh-so much more.

So, if Ima on (and off) the Bima can do all these things all the time, surely I can attend a wedding in Tulsa on Saturday, March 21 (mazel tov, Abby and Donnie) and take a midterm exam in New York on Tuesday, March 24, right?!