About 4 months ago, I promised Acadia I would write an article for his site. I think I may have lost a bet, but it’s been so long now that I’ve forgotten how it actually went down. (Editor’s note – she has to do whatever I say for a YEAR – Acadia)
Since I’m WAY past my deadline, I figured the most appropriate topic to both entertain you and salvage some of my reputation would be “Famous Procrastinators”. People who are remembered for great things but were also horrible at completing projects or meeting deadlines. This way, I look less like a screw up.
- Former President Bill Clinton – Apparently, there’s a thing in Washington called “Clinton Standard Time”, invented because the former POTUS was late to virtually every meeting and social engagement he was scheduled to attend. Even Hilary was quoted as saying “it’s maddening to try to keep him on any kind of schedule.”
- Douglas Adams – The author of Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy was infamous for his procrastinating tendencies. Hitchhiker’s Guide was actually being promoted even before Adams had finished the book! One famous quote attributed to him was “I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.” Excellently said, sir.
- Hamlet – The title character in one of William Shakespeare’s most famous plays basically puts off taking action for almost the entire play and by the time he does act, most everyone has either died or gone insane. Poor self-esteem and decision-making abilities, or clever mastermind? I’m betting on the former.
- Abraham Lincoln – As the story goes, Lincoln actually scribbled down the Gettysburg Address on the back of a napkin while on the train to Gettysburg…to give the Gettysburg Address. There’s argument whether he wrote the first (and only) draft of the speech on the way to Gettysburg or whether he tore up the first one and substituted notes he’d revised on the train, but the story still lends itself to a certain degree of “last minute preparation”.And last, but certainly not least…
- Leonardo da Vinci – Da Vinci was famous for taking months, or YEARS, to finish his projects…if he finished them at all. At the time of his death, there were numerous sketches found of planned projects and unfinished works. It took him 16 years to finish the Mona Lisa. Virgin of the Rocks took 13 years to complete. Da Vinci was so behind schedule painting The Last Supper that his patron threatened to refuse to pay him, and then it still took 3 more years to finish the painting.
The thing to take away from all this is to not feel guilty if you’re behind on finishing a project. Maybe you’re just a literary/artistic genius and no one takes you seriously enough to give you enough time.
(Editor’s note deux – I made a gif of why she actually wrote the post – Acadia)