May 11th, 2009

awkwardness, incapacitated


One of the things I hate most about being sick on a workday is the inevitable wrestling match between my Puritan work ethic* and my common sense about whether to call in sick...

Common sense: Last night I was feverish, achy, had terrible stomach cramps, didn't sleep much, and when I did it was all occupied by complicated dreams of being part of a resistance movement fighting a giant world-spanning super-computer dictator. What part of this makes me think, "Gee, it would be a great idea to go to work today?"

Puritan work ethic: Well, you're much less feverish and achy this morning. And you haven't actually, you know, barfed or anything.

Common sense: I'm sure my coworkers will find that great consolation if I go in and barf on them.

Puritan work ethic: You're just being a big baby.

Common sense: Oh, now we're down to the name calling? Look, I have no urgent meetings or looming deadlines today. Doesn't it make sense for me to stay home and rest rather than dragging myself through a minimally productive day? Tomorrow I'll be refreshed and rested, and can work twice as hard.

Puritan work ethic (visibly salivating at the 'work twice as hard'): Well....all right. But don't you think I'm letting me get away with this kind of thing every time I have the sniffles.

Now, having sent the email that I wouldn't be in to work today and subdued my Puritan work ethic, I'm going to go back to bed.

* Yeah, I know. I was raised in New England, maybe that's where I get it from.