Dear Kid,

Once upon a time there was a deadline. It wasn’t a deadline far off in some mysterious future. Those can be easily ignored. One can put those off until tomorrow even though it would be better to get to them today. It wasn’t a faux deadline, self-imposed to give the illusion of urgency. No, this was an Imminent Deadline and it Loomed.

Imminent deadlines have a way of looming that is quite unlike any other kind of looming. There is no warp and no weft. There is just great, hulking looming. In fact, imminent deadlines often loom with malice. And hostility. Sometimes even with hostile malice.

This particular Imminent Deadline loomed with more hostility and more malice than most.

And it Smirked. It was a hostile, malicious, smirking sort of Deadline whose vocabulary consisted mostly of “mwahhahahahaha” and the theme from Jeopardy!

You might think it was deadline for a college assignment. You’d be wrong. Those sorts of Imminent Deadlines are generally mainlining Starbucks and cursing Higher Education in multi-syllabic (albeit meaningless) words.

You might think it was a deadline for a work assignment. You’d be wrong again. Those sorts of Imminent Deadlines are generally accompanied by visions of the unemployment office and spreadsheets with circular logic.

You might think it was a deadline for voting. You’d be wrong there too. Those deadlines are used to being ignored and generally skulk along near the voting precinct hoping someone will notice even if it’s only an eager journalism student.

You might then think it was a deadline for a college application. It wasn’t, because it was the wrong time of year for those deadlines.

You might consider the possibility of a Deadline associated with some sort of Ultimatum. Those Imminent Deadlines can be quite terrifying. Their bite has been known to cause all kinds of paralyzation.

This was a deadline for a blog. And it Lurked. And it Loomed. And it radiated Hostility.

It is worth noting that almost no heat is generated by a Lurking and Looming Deadline except upon those who are being Lurked and Loomed at. So while deadlines are terrible for generally heating up a home, they are quite clever at lighting a fire under someone’s posterior.

History has noted that many attempts have been made over the years to deal with Imminent Deadlines. One way is to simply ignore the deadline. However, since deadlines are distantly related to hangovers, it will not surprise you to learn that they (deadlines) hate being ignored and will do their utmost to bring themselves to the forefront of the conversation.

Throughout time, the most popular method for dealing with a deadline has been to turn over and go back to sleep. This is sometimes a slightly effective method for dealing with hangovers, but pretty much never gets rid of a deadline.

It turns out that there are two effective methods for dealing with a Lurking and Looming Deadline full of Hostility and Malice.

The first is to become so wildly popular and successful that you become the Boss of All Deadlines. This almost never happens between the time the Deadline begins Lurking and the actual Deadline in question.

The other way is to simply Deal with It.

The third way (I love how Douglas Adams counts and may use his approach exclusively from now on. Or I might not) is to write a blog about them. This not only addresses the actual Deadline itself, but serves to flatter the Lurking and Looming so much that they sit down like obedient puppies waiting for a snack.

I hope you have nothing Lurking or Looming on your horizon today.

Love, Mom