Multitasking

Multitasking is a concept designed to make us feel inadequate. Like scholar-athletes or Angelina Jolie.

The idea that we can perform several tasks simultaneously is unrealistic. Neuroscientists have spent a lot of time demonstrating this, because people who insist that they’re capable of doing two or three things at once require scientific proof before they can be convinced otherwise. (For the rest of us, common sense tends to suffice.)

I believe the neuroscientists, although I think they overlooked one important thing: They didn’t consider the laundry.

Laundry is the ideal multitasking component. As long as the clothes are in the washer or the dryer, you’re free to participate in another activity content in the knowledge that you are successfully “doing” two things at once—even if the second thing is talking on the phone, watching TV or napping. This should be foolproof, but sometimes it’s possible to mess it up.

Today I’m planning to engage in my own form of multitasking—ironing and watching television. Yes, this is the same ironing I’ve been contemplating for nearly a week. I feel, however, that conditions are finally right for experimentation. Alert the scientific community.

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