“Buy diary” it said on my to-do list. Such a simple-sounding task, right?
My local stationery store dedicated one side of a long aisle to the mysterious process of diary-selection. As I arrived to tackle this task, there was already one other young woman looking confused and tired in her quest for the perfect day planner.
“It’s a bit confusing, isn’t it?” I joked with the young woman. She smiled broadly and started to laugh about it, “Oh my goodness yes. How can you choose from so many?”
We exchanged anecdotes about how we would make our decisions, and then went about trying to choose a diary.
Naturally, all the colours I liked were only available in diaries that were too heavy, too big, too expensive, too something.
I was looking for a small, week-to-a-view diary, with a colourful cover, that weighed just a few hundred grams. Again – easy right?
More people arrived in the aisle – all looking for the perfect diary. Men, woman, young, old, conservative, creative – which one would they choose, and how long would it take for them to choose it?
I felt that we could have created a “diary-buyer support group” right there and then. We’d sit in a circle of chairs, sipping on water or green tea, looking worn out and hopeless, saying things like, “last year I thought I’d bought the perfect diary, but it turned out to be all wrong. Too big, the font was too small….”
Or, “I thought a week-to-a-view would be enough, but I ended up scribbling all over the whole page just for one day. So, in the end I just gave up and started scribbling on blank pages and pasting them in.”
Or, “You know, I feel like such a failure, because I bought a “day to a page” diary and then at the end of the year, so many of those pages were just blank. I felt like I’d just had such a non-event of a year.”
Or, “I chose black for the colour, but it just kept disappearing into my handbag, and whenever I needed to refer to it, I’d spend ages digging around looking for it, looking so unprofessional and ultimately giving up and scribbling on my hand.”
Or, “The edges of the plastic cover were so sharp, I cut myself so many times, I ended up with blood on the pages, it was revolting looking back on all that dried blood on the paper.”
So, ultimately, I found my “perfect diary” – it was orange, week-to-a-view, spiral inside, but smooth covered, and less than $15. I felt like such a champion! I was leaving the diary aisle – in under 30 minutes! I walked out, leaving four other people still staring at the selection of diaries, fingering the books, feeling the covers, comparing the prices.
I was out of there.
But, then when I got home, I realised – THERE WAS NO RIBBON. I had failed in my quest for the ‘perfect’ diary. Now I had to find a ribbon in the drawer – you know, the second kitchen drawer where all the “good stuff” is kept – and make my own. I knew there was a reason I kept that piece of ribbon……
So, I’ve jotted some things in my diary, dutifully christening it and making 2017 “real” and active.
Now all I have to do is work out a way to use a paper diary in conjunction with an electronic phone diary.
Has anyone mastered that yet?
I kidded myself last year that I would go big-time into the paper diary world but, really, who was I kidding. There were too many blank pages as evidence that my experiment had failed.
So, this year I’ve downsized to a much smaller version and I hope that I can make it work.
I kind of like the ritual of diary-buying at the beginning of the year, and judging by the folk in the aisle with me, there are still a few of us who like it too.
I open my new shiny orange diary, full of hope and ideas for 2017 and I wish you all the best for your new year.
Don’t forget….if you want to make it happen, PUT IT IN YOUR DIARY.