Sunday, April 1, 2012

Groovin' On Cruisin' But Is He Phonin'?

For those of you who might need a translation, the question is: Is he phoning it in?

Most slang dictionaries define "phoning it in" as basically going through the motions because you really don't want to be somewhere in particular doing something in particular at that chosen for you place in particular.

For the past few weeks, I've gotten the feeling that I've been just phoning it in with this blog. I've written quite a few posts that haven't been up to my high standards, but because I have schedule to keep (shades of OCD) with this blog, I haven't really gotten on my case about their inferior quality.

Granted, I do have a built in excuse to use and shamefully, have used that excuse to justify the inferior quality of my posts. The excuse?

Listen Miller, don't you worry about phoning it in, because after all, someone who has written a combined total of 1004 posts for four blogs deserves a break every now and again.

This actually bugs me on all kinds of levels. I detest it when I come across it at work because that shows me that deep down you really don't give a F about your job and you're just there for the paycheck. I detest it when I come across it elsewhere in the blog world, because that shows to me that you really don't care about your readers. I detest it on a personal level, because that shows me that you really don't give a F about your family and friends.

But most importantly, I detest it in myself, because no matter what the issue may be or what kind of crap I'm going through, I've always given 100% in whatever endeavor I happen to be doing.

A good example is with my current knee injury. I mentioned in the comments of Friday's post that I have to get an MRI done, and the probability that the MRI will confirm my worst fears (surgery) is almost 100%. This is because the note that the nurse wrote on the form said, "possible torn meniscus".

With this particular injury, I could phone in what I do for the next few months and really no one would blame me for it. However, I have people who are counting on me to battle through this. My wife is looking forward to taking her first real vacation with me since 2008 and not only am I looking forward to that, but I'm looking forward to meeting up with a blog buddy from the left coast during that vacation. So there is no way in hell that I can sit on my ass and phone it in, especially since I'm counting on myself as well, because burn out is not a viable option.

Most of you know that I have a habit of punishing myself on this blog because of perceived (legit or otherwise) shortcomings with my writing and my blogging. So on one hand, this post could be considered to be a public pillorying of a bad habit that I have no business of doing. On the other hand, this post could be considered to be a mea culpa with the promise of better thought-provoking posts to come.

In any event, I leave you with a short blast from a group that was influential in my musical upbringing.


  1. I've struggled with this kind of thing myself. It's easy to be lazy but I don't want to allow myself. AT the same time, sometimes you have to up the energy expenditures in one area of life and that requires decreases in others. It's neither good nor bad particularly. It just is.

  2. No punishing - just look forward, G.

  3. I think you are being rather hard on yourself. Not every post can be an award winning post, and I hadn't noticed that your high standard had dropped at all. I do know what you mean though, about setting yourself standards and feeling let down if you don't meet them.

    I really hope your knee injury is easier to fix than you imagine.

  4. Life takes us on some interesting and unexpected twists and turns, doesn't it. And I guess we bring them to the blogs at the same time, it's the nature of writing. Sorry about your knee injury. Hopefully you'll come through it feeling better than ever.

  5. Charles: This is very true. It seems right now that I'm doing just that. Work has become the overriding concern of the day simply because we're short staffed.

    And because of it, other areas are indeed getting shortchanged.

    Still bothers me though, but as you say, it just is. And it's something that I'll have to battle through.

    Lynn: I try to look forward, but sometimes it's just easier to give myself a verbal thrashing on not doing my best all the time.

    Joe: Thanks.

    It's a quirk that I've suffered through most of my life, in that no matter what I've done or attempted to do, I always aim for success on the first try.

    When I don't get it, I get discouraged and move on to something else.

    It has taken me quite a long time to realize that not everything comes out perfect on the first try and that sometimes, you have to work at it in order to become better.

    I'm hoping that it's easier to fix as well, but I'm always one of those people who needs to prepare for a worst case scenario for whatever I suffer from. Strange I know, but that's just me.

    Joanne: Life indeed does take the unexpected twist and turn, but I try my best not to let it bleed into my blogging. With my writing, some is acceptable, because without, my stories would be somewhat dry and unimaginative.

    I'm hoping so to, because it gets awfully tireseome of walking around like Walter Brennan. :D

  6. It's hard to find an equal balance in all aspects of life. I'm sort of like you, I'm not the phoning in (as you put it) kind of person.

    I take my job seriously, I love my family and I care about my readers and my blog. It's nearly impossible to give all of these the attention they deserve without short-changing one or the other.

    Sounds like this knee injury is really taking its toll. Hope you have a speedy recovery and are able to have a wonderful vacation!

  7. Workingdan: Overall the one and half days of vacation did help with the burnout, but the minor swerve didn't help things.

    For the moment, the knee injury is more of a nuisance than anything esle. I can't spend as much time as I want to sitting at my desk resting it, but I battle through to the best of my ability.

    I just hate not being able to give 100% to whatever it is I'm doing all the time. Your reaons make perfect sense, but it doesn't make it any easier to deal with.

    R: Big time sucketh. Especially when I try to spent large blocks of time at my desk vegging out and resting it, only to be thwarted and called upon every 10 minutes to do something.

    Sometimes being the go to guy isn't what its cracked up to be.


Go on, give me your best shot. I can take it. If I couldn't, I wouldn't have created this wonderful little blog that you decided to grace with your presence today.

About that comment moderation thingy: While yes, it does say up above I can take it, I only use it to prevent the occasional miscreant from leaving thoughtless and/or clueless comments.

So remember, all of your comments are greatly appreciated and all answers will be given that personal touch that you come to expect and enjoy.

G. B. Miller

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