Snow helps, and nighttime. I can’t hear talking or lyrics: only classical music. I need to surround myself with the relevant documents and clear all other clutter out of the way. Tea and cigarettes used to make me focus—sit down, act cultured, tap away as I felt inspired (i.e., stimulated). Coffee, at least, makes me want to be busy.
I don’t understand these writers with whiskey and a typewriter. I cannot string together a sentence while drinking–or else I cannot stop talking for long enough to hunker down. A friend recently mused that she “definitely wrote A and A+ papers drunk.” Or, as Ernest Hemingway, the poster boy for productive drinking, explains, “An intelligent man is sometimes forced to be drunk to spend time with his fools.” Amazing. Perhaps I’m fool enough, but I need caffeine, a full stomach, and nothing better to do.
Not that I think the party scene is helpful… Indeed, I think the unspoken secret to student accomplishment is instead the meal point system. Park the libraries near “free” sustenance and you have students with no need to go home. Give me some kombucha (okay- 0.5% alcohol?) and, let’s say, chocolate-covered anything, and I can slap something out. Keep Weshop open past midnight, and the libraries open past 2 am, and I think we would see a marked improvement in student performance.
Or, as it turns out, two hours in a waiting room can at least inspire a blog post.