August 25, 2018

Back to School

There’s something about back to school season. The lazy days of summer are behind us and the bundled-up hibernation of winter still feels far away.

After months of shorts and flip flops and sun screen, the other day I thought, “Huh... I might need to put a sweatshirt on.”

Change is in the air. Things start happening again after the summer break.

And I don’t just mean business things.

For my family, this back to school season has been a time of weddings, funerals, reunions, retreats, recoveries, and more.

It’s like an annual inflection point on the life clock. The second hand is always in a smooth sweeping motion, but - more than New Years Eve or my birthday - this is the time of year when I really feel the “tick” of the minute hand as it suddenly advances from the last number to the new one.

Death, rebirth, and renewal. Disruption and change. For me, these are the watchwords of this transition from summer into fall.

Please forgive me for getting a bit sentimental, but life is short. And the faster we move, the shorter it seems to get. Wasting it feels like an atrocity to me.

I’m sure that this is why one of the things I despise most about hourly billing is that it so often wastes everyone’s time. It allows you to get to work before you know what they hell your client really wants.

It’s like being a cabbie with a fare in the back seat who’s yelling, “JUST DRIVE!” until they end up stranded and broke on the side of the road in the middle of nowhere.

Sure, you can say, “Hey, I just did what he told me. It’s his problem if he didn’t end up where he wanted to go. Whatever... I got paid.”

That’s not how I want to spend my time.