I have a small problem.  An unusual habit.  Okay, it’s an addiction.  But I could quit at any time.  And besides, I blame my children.

It all started getting out of control several years back.  One day I was tired and weary from initiating “I spy” games to keep my boys from fighting in the car.  In a flash on inspiration I thought: Art time!   Clipboards and crayons would provide each of them hours of peaceful car fun. 

I got them each their own clipboards and presented them with a flourish.  My enthusiasm was like a challenge to them:  “How boring can you find this?”   They promptly dumped out and melted crayons into the upholstery and discovered that clipboards gave them even greater reach to hit, poke, and harass one another.  I repossessed the clipboards, scraped out a rainbow of hardened wax, and returned to saying things like, “We don’t hit!  We talk!”  And “Who can tell me how to spell “stop”?” 

At this point we had a posse of clipboards.  It happened so fast I didn’t even realize I had a problem.   I had a few clipboards for work, for myself as well as clients who wanted to take notes and forgot to bring in their own paper.  I had a clipboard in the kitchen, another for the car, two for the boys, one in my home office to track to-do lists, and on my bedside for those late-night “Oh No!  I forgot to…” that occur between eleven pm and two am.  

At least clipboards are more convenient and portable than my former personal organization obsession, Write and Wipe boards.  Prior to that it was lidded plastic boxes.  Before that, erasable labels and Sharpie pens. 

I seem to suffer from the delusion that with the right organizational tools, I will magically transform into an organized person.  I know I’m not alone here.  This fantasy plays out in many people’s lives.  I know a certain husband who buys tools from Home Depot as if possession of table saw, compounding miter saw, saws-all and skill saw, equaled completion of long-planned remodel.  At this point I’m thinking we can do our remodel using clipboards.  I just need a few more…

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