Perpetually Unfinished
Wednesday, August 18, 2004
I'm tired.

In so, so many ways...
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Thursday, August 12, 2004
Back from Hawai'i... it was a terrific trip and a great place. I'll talk about it more when I get around to uploading (some of) my 400 digital pictures and creating some sort of internet vacation scrapbook.

I've been dragging this whole week, ever since I got back. I got less than 3 hours of very interrupted sleep on the 10:30pm Saturday- 2:15pm Sunday flight (that includes a 5 hour time change), and haven't really caught up since. Every day I get home from work and I just want to collapse.

I went out with my co-workers after work yesterday-- our summer seminarian interns are done this week, and the lead organizer is leaving our team and shifting to a different job-- at Giordano's. Pizza and (BYO)beer. It was pretty cool; it's the first time I've done anything social with my co-workers, and they're all good people. Definitely fun.

Anyway... I finally finished that long-planned Closer to Fine entry, which could really use some editing-- but fuck it, I'm tired of it and want to move on. So here you go, the fun and excitement of an over-thinking Britt being indecisive yet again:

I'm trying to get my financial accounts in order. And it's really, really tough.

I’ve always had really strong feelings about money, and how people with more money than they need should act. And now, suddenly, it’s all very concrete instead of theoretical. And I don’t know what to do. I’ve gone in a few months from a college kid with a few dollars on hand thanks to a part-time work study job, getting help from my parents to pay my rent, to an economically privileged American.

I'm just having a really hard time, so far, figuring out the "right" way to be a progressive/radical/activist adult. (There are many reasons I want to stick around with Peace Project this upcoming year, but when I'm honest with myself, I have to admit that one of them is that being a progressive/radical/activist college student is something I actually know how to do.) It really does feel like there's no one out there I can talk to or learn from who's gone through the same thing and asked the same questions and cared about the same things; not in the same way, not thinking and feeling the ways I do.

Whether it's what I do with my money or my time, the variety of choices and the difficulty of weighing them has, frankly, paralyzed me to a certain extent. So I sit around in limbo. And I-- the one whose parents tease her about her obsessive budgeting and careful money management, who's spent hours on the El adding and subtracting and multiplying and making careful budgets-- I've gone months now without holding myself to a budget or keeping track of my spending or really knowing how much I have to spare. That doesn't mean I've splurged-- I'm still a cheapskate, see above-- but if I had the cashflow narrowed down and the "extra" written down in clear and exact numbers, then I'd have to figure out what to do with it. Instead, I keep putting it off and putting it off. And as far as my free time, too, I've done next to nothing to try to figure out where I can give my time, for then I'd have to choose between a vast array of social change/activist groups, volunteering and service opportunities, and political efforts. (The thought and indecision I've expended on deciding what I should do politically this fall deserves-- and will probably sooner or later receive-- its own discussion.) So instead, I do nothing but go to work, come home, and spend time with Alex and other friends.

I can live with myself for acting like this, at least temporarily, thanks to my belief in the importance of the work I do in my 9-5 (okay, 9:45-6:30) job, but it still nags at me, and I know I'll have to make some choices soon and take some action. I just wish I could find a way to figure things out that wasn't so crazy-making.
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Nature attains perfection, but man never does. There is a perfect ant, a perfect bee, but man is perpetually unfinished. He is both an unfinished animal and an unfinished man. It is this incurable unfinishedness which sets man apart from other living things. For, in the attempt to finish himself, man becomes a creator. Moreover, the incurable unfinishedness keeps man perpetually immature, perpetually capable of learning and growing.
--Eric Hoffer

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