Saturday, August 7, 2010

Women can read maps... its just not the priority!


Now that I have been working for well over a year, multi-tasking has become second nature to me. It sounds like a praise, but believe me, its not, its just a reflex action on which the conscious mind has no control.

How can this be a bad thing? Well, I now completely lack the ability to do less than three things at a time. When I sit down to watch a movie or a TV show, I am still working or thinking about working or feeling guilty about not working.

I decided to make a chart of my daily activities and how they get completed. lets read out a page...

When I eat breakfast, I am also checking my mail, dodging cereal into Bond's mouth(This is his moment of fun with me! Turning the mouth just in time to splatter the spoonful on the table mat! Till date the scores are even..so guess, I am not bad at ensuring that 50% of what is dished out does eventually find a place in his tummy.) and cleaning my kitchen from the party-night earlier.

When I am folding clothes, I am also taking up Q&As with Toshali, getting Bond's craft list into my memory and praying it stays there till the evening. Also ticking my check list on the pending phone calls that need to be made.

When I am driving, I am going through spellings with Bond, thinking about the work I need to do that day, and also trying to remember what I need from the grocery store. trying my level best not to miss the important 'for sale' signs.

When I am cooking, I am also on the phone. As all moms will agree that this is the ideal time for the kids to get their way. So usually the scene that continues with an on going phone conversation is like this :

Bond: "Mom I am going to play, will do the homework later."

Me: Glaring once, mouthing a shriek, gulping a curse and with no apparent reaction..finally shouting a huge "NO", only to scare mom-in-law at the other end of the phone...

Mom-in-law(from the other end of the line) : "I was just asking, GOD!! You really have become rude and insensitive since you took up that job of yours.. "

Me: Blurting illegibly, going crazy signalling with the rolling pin at Bond to get back in, while he coolly takes his cycle and closes the door on my silly face.

Mom-in-law hangs up and I am left with a rolling pin, a burnt chapati on the gas, unfinished homework and a hyper ventilating heart!

When I am going to the bathroom - wait a minute. I don't get to go to the bathroom for more than 27 seconds anyway, so that doesn't really leave time for much else. Except yelling down the hall at my daughter to pick up the phone that's been ringing since I entered the bathroom and nobody seems to mind the brain numbing ring!

The list is endless, please ladies feel free to add in all the multi-tasking you have been doing. We do not realise it unless we put it on paper(blog) like this!

Torture for me would be to sit me on the couch with absolutely nothing - no paper, no pens to write on my hand with, no articles to read. Then make sure the kitchen is messy and my kid's are watching High School Musical instead of studying for the upcoming quiz. Then just force me to sit there and do nothing.

After about 19 seconds I would begin to tremble. After a minute I would look like I was goingthrough detox. After about 5 minutes, you would have to strap me to the couch, because that would be the only way I would be able to not do anything.

What if it is like a drug addiction and I have to add more and more tasks to my plate? Where would I be able to draw the line? Is there a limit to how many tasks a woman can tackle at a time?

After being married for almost thirteen years, I am convinced that the only multi-tasking men can do is read while going to the bathroom.

And then they come up with books like 'Why women can't read maps'.

32 comments:

deeps said...

Multitasking is the need of the hour as long as it doesn’t burn you out …
Or you got to take the cue from bond… when its time to play… no sub, just play even if that means banging the door on his mom’s face!! :p

Nikita Banerjee said...

Haha...moms are superwomen! :D

KParthasarathi said...

Hilarious,Sujata.I liked the line that the only multitasking men can do is to read the dailies when in the toilet,very uncharitable remark as I do sudoku too!!

anilkurup said...

The signing off statement was excellent,,"women cant read maps".
And the quip , that the only multi task men can do is to read while in the wash room.
Enjoyed the post

Gymnast said...

LOl..yes, moms rock!

I am constantly amazed by the multi-tasking specimen here , though i never do anything to help her. ;-)

wise donkey said...

err i read in the bathroom and i am better at maps than many men:)
paradise for me would include google maps:D

women multitask better because of the way their brains function and that probably evolved because of the need to take care of home..

sujata said...

@deeps point noted!

@Nikita grow into one before you have a kid of your own..it helps to pre-empt the future!

@KPartha LOL! Sudoku indeed!

@Anilkurup thanks

@Gymnast the hand that rocks the cradle, cooks and cleans too..so its a time tested thing now!

@Wise donkey, Your profile does not mention your gender, neither does the blog name or the profile picture..but reading this comment, i presume you are a woman. Am I right? And inspite of being one, you read maps and read in the bathroom..wow Good for you..so heres another example of ladies beating the men in their core competencies!!

Sumandebray said...

Hmm ... sound nothing less than a super woman!
By the way how did the term "multi tasking" get coined.. I wonder if was based on reading while going to the bathroom... before the comuter picked this term up!

radha said...

Maps. Just not necessary. They are written by those who do not understand women. We move around by instinct. And we are masters at multi-tasking. Whether we have a career or otherwise.

indranil said...

Wouldn't life be pretty boring if there was no multi-tasking? doing a single job at a time purely focussed and being so pre-determned.... and in a man's capability to multi-task you just worked out the physical aspect. the mental ability to fantasize a spectrum of females at the same time goes beyond any mundane multi-tasking capabilities. its all about a man's mind power.. single mind, multi faceted... :P :P

but great post specially the line " i now completely lack the ability to do less than three things at a time"

R. Ramesh said...

Is there a limit to how many tasks a woman can tackle at a time? oh what an innocent question..have u ever worried abt how v poor men multitask...work, cook, baby sit...oofff..u women will never understand..hey hey dont throw anything...

Sonu said...

U r a superwomen didi...i tried multitasking like listening to songs while reading...but it never worked(may be it was a stupid idea)..
Or may be men are only born to read maps..
:)

Balachandran V said...

All the fun apart, have you considered whether there is any quality loss due to multi-tasking? Say, in caring for your family? In cooking? In teaching Bond? In loving your husband? If you haven't, fine, things are at a manageable level.

When young, multitasking would seem a heady, thrilling ride, oh Yeah. You feel so damn important. But you will be unaware of the erosion of quality of life.

Take care.

Debopam Chaudhuri said...

Ooops!!! Well Done!! This is Sperwoman Stuff, but on second thoughts, it is pretty normal! Many working mothers are going through the same routine day in and day out.

I find Sushree not multitasking for only the period late at night, when rest of us are asleep, and she is watching some serials at Star world. Although, i feel she is unwinding unimportant stuffs of that day, and planning for tomorrow at the same time!

Arun Meethale Chirakkal said...

No one multitask the way woman does. The way you signed it off made me check the antonym of misogynist. :)

sujata said...

@SDR I am thinking too, but I am convinced it was coined by a woman.

@Radha So true, we do follow our guts and most of the time we are right.

@indrani the less talked about the fantasies of men the better..it has material enough for a feature film..leave alone a blog!

@Ramesh I am looking for a thing which I can throw from Muscat and will land in Sharjah...watch out!

@Sonu hhhaha every mom is a super woman!

@bala theres no pride, nor any feeling of importance, its just a way of life. where missing out on chores is not an option. The set of things that need to be done just have to be done right and the day is all but 24hours..so where is the choice? But yes what happens is women have a tendency to take it all on their shoulders..so there is considerable lack of 'me time'.

@Debopam thats the world of the females! The actual work at times starts after every body has said their good nights!

@Arun Are you a misogynist?

Arun Meethale Chirakkal said...

Noooooooooooooooooo.....!

R. Ramesh said...

hey su...thanks 4 yr kind words buddy..u r generous..coffee is on me when yr famly visits DXB (u have been saying this for 3 yrs now i think hehe)u r throwing something from muscat?...hmmmm..ok go for a gold coin..:)

Destiny's child... said...

I was home alone yesterday and in a frenzy to impress mom when she got back home I did all work that I could possibly do: sweeping, doing the dishes, washing clothes and some cooking. Though she gave me credit for whatever I did, she was quick to point out that the porch was dirty, the yard looked like it was mowed down, the floor was not mopped blah blah..and I retorted, ' I am no super-human' and realised I was talking to one!

A great read Sujata :)

The Holy Lama said...

men multitask when in washroom or when we shop- then they have calls to make, pay the bills and carry the bags back home.Ill equipped but can have one of the kind around:)

Bikramjit said...

no thats not true about men.. multitask :) come onnnn

i can drive the car, follow the GPS and listen to people in the CAR .. thats three things
he he he he

but then HATS OFF TO MOMS yes they are SUPERWOMEN.. and yes agreed women can multitask but is that always beneficial that is debatable..

Unknown!!! said...

"feeling guilty about not working"..hehe this one is always there..some kind of cognitive dissonance..
I dont know about multi-tasking..but yea some standup comedian said that woman think too many things in parallel...their mind is like some...web....whereas for men it is like we think one after the other...and dont complicate..
~no offence meant :)

Nona said...

The stress multiplies with the job!

Let me assure, the same complex process takes place in the mind of men too! But women are more articulate. :)

Pesto Sauce said...

Ya women can multi-task

Where these pics are taken? Is it Corniche or Qantab?

Jyothi said...

You just reminded me of all those nightmares...you had to no? I will add here that I finally ended up with having a Brufen a day to maintain the household and job! Now just reading about all that again, I need a Brufen....
Men can multitask until you tell them to cook! The amount of multitasking getting a meal on the table requires will surely throw them off balance.... :)

Indrani said...

Super post!Hilarious and well presented opinions on men and women.

Satya said...

hi sujata,

i chanced upon ur blog accidentally...u got 2 lovely kids.. i was reading ur post and realized how multitasked we women are but the sad part is we take it for granted... : )creation is perfect women are the substance of life that holds or breaks a home...my hubby say this often i am his strength and that is why women is known as shakti...it is our very nature...thank you for sharing this lovly post


if u get time do visit my blog

Satya
http://www.superyummyrecipes.com

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PURN!MA said...

hahahhaa... that was awesome. specially the yelling-at-Bond-not-at-mil part. :) Multitasking is inbuilt in us women?

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sujata said...

Thanks all for writing in.
@pesto sauce The beach pictures are from salalah

RGB said...

Multi-tasking...tell me about it! My mom was this super-woman, I almost saw the 10 hands working non-stop!

At work, multi-tasking is mandatory. And back at home, my baby tries hard to get my full attention!

And all men suffer from this reading-in-the-loo syndrome, eh?