Stray Thoughts: Workday Walks

Here’s a photo from early Friday afternoon, my last workday this week:

Workday Walk

I took a wonderful 2-hour walk in the rare Winter sun, enjoying the forest and the sea shore. ((Hard to call it a beach these days, even though, technically, it’s still a beach. I just miss the ice cream and the surfers and the bikinis and the kids playing and the cocktails and the sunscreen.)) An easy thing to do, even when you’re working and it’s 2pm.

Or so it should be.

In reality, too many people still are confined to their office cubicle during “business hours”. ((As if there wasn’t any business happening after 6pm.)) I’m grateful that my situation is different: Thanks in part to the wonderful people I work with, who are happy with me making my own hours as long as the work gets done. As anything, it comes with a price: Less income than I could make if I worked full-time. But what a low price that is, compared to not being able to enjoy the Winter sun whenever I feel like it?

Here are a few quotes and links related to this topic.


One final paragraph of advice: […] It is not enough to fight for the land; it is even more important to enjoy it. While you can. While it’s still here.

So get out there and hunt and fish and mess around with your friends, ramble out yonder and explore the forests, climb the mountains, bag the peaks, run the rivers, breathe deep of that yet sweet and lucid air, sit quietly for a while and contemplate the precious stillness, the lovely, mysterious, and awesome space.

Enjoy yourselves, keep your brain in your head and your head firmly attached to the body, the body active and alive, and I promise you this much; I promise you this one sweet victory over our enemies, over those desk-bound men and women with their hearts in a safe deposit box, and their eyes hypnotized by desk calculators. I promise you this; You will outlive the bastards.

Edward Abbey


Here’s Quinn Norton, reporting about her experiences in Puerto Rico and how they changed her view of productivity. Similar story to my own adventures in Latin America.

“We multitask, we update, and we conflate status with long hours worked in no paid overtime systems for the nebulous and fantastic status of being Too Important to have Time to Ourselves, time to waste.”


“There was a time when you could write a few poems, die of TB, and call it a life well lived.”


“Productivity is the opposite of wisdom.”

Against Productivity


There only really exist 24-hour days, and no uniformity and schematism whatsoever will change that.


The call for uniformly executed and constant daily working hours has its roots in arithmetic pedantery; because there exist no rational grounds why the multitude of what we call leisure, sleep and work should be distributed evenly.

Gustav Landauer: The Workday (written for the 1st of May 1912 (!), my translation)


“I was always a bit concerned about purity of essence. I never wanted a job that might affect the way I wrote or thought.”


“I knew there was no market for it and never would be, because there’s never a market for true art, so my main concern was always to have a job that didn’t require me to write or think.”

A Microinterview with Nell Zink


This article from The Onion seemed to be a good fit for our topic, too (via New Escapologist):

In an effort to help working individuals improve their fitness and well-being, experts at the Mayo Clinic issued a new set of health guidelines Thursday recommending that Americans stand up at their desk, leave their office, and never return.

Have a pleasant day, everybody!