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Back-up plans, face plants and rice

I was going to post something different this morning, but then I almost died, so I changed my tack. Granted, my take on this morning’s events might be a slight exaggeration, but we’ll never know, now will we?

Here’s what happened. I work in a small studio space, one room, adorable, cozy, happy. And this morning I was making rice. I let it boil and then I turned the heat on the stove way down to simmer and walked away to work.

About 45 minutes later, I got up to get some water and realized that the flame on the stove was out, which made me realize that it smelled an awful lot like gas in my studio. And that I was dizzy (though that may have been psychosomatic – read, I have a very vivid, suggestable and active imagination).

So I opened up all of the windows, letting the rain and wind sweep through, literally clearing the air. The actress in me even stuck my head out the window and took in a nice deep breath.

After this close call, I’m thinking I need one of those buttons on my desk. A help button, an emergency button, an ‘I’ve fallen and I can’t get up button’. I mean, would I have had time to Skype Shauna or Ron or Leslie (who are always just an IM away) before my face hit my keyboard? Maybe if we had a codeword. Though my nose probably wouldn’t have the wherewithal to remember it, let alone enter it correctly as it falls forward.

As many of us here are freelancers – copywriting, designing, social media’ing – and work alone, I’m wondering: what’s the back-up plan? As in, who’s got your actual back? Is anyone aware of your whereabouts and health status? Is someone checking in to make sure you’re alive during the day?

How long would it have taken for someone to find me? I’m due at a Seder tonight at 5:30, so there’s that. But on a regular Monday? Oy, I shiver at the thought.

Personally, and for what it’s worth, if 5:00 came and went and I never bugged Shauna about one of the zillion client projects we’re working on or didn’t run something by Ron or didn’t just generally connect with Leslie or if one of them pinged me and I didn’t answer – they would know something was wrong. But by then it would be too late and I’d already be dead.

I’m very, uberly, wickedly superstitious. So now I’m worried that I’m writing my fate. If I do die mysteriously at my desk in the next few days, don’t get too creeped out, just know that I have mad intuitive skills – and see it as a nice little kick in the ass from me to: 1. Get some sort of back-up plan, and 2. Check your stove regularly when cooking rice.

Image credit: kharied

Join the discussion 23 Comments

  • Amanda says:

    Hubby’s got my back on this one. We chat on GChat most of the day. When I’m out, I check in using FourSquare (if I’m alone). I’m so bloody transparent in where I am and what I’m doing that I make it really easy for a potential stalker.

    Good thing I’m too scary for people to stalk. RAWR.

    Also, don’t die. We need to have dinner.
    .-= Amanda´s last blog ..Decrypting Thesis CSS: Header Magic =-.

  • Amy says:

    Shannan from has my back. She works with me on marketing gigs and we keep Google Talk open nearly all day. We’ve already decided that if anything should happen to me, she would be in charge of updating my status on Facebook and Twitter to alert the masses. Something like this:

    “Attn: At 11:12 this morning @ResourcefulMom riced herself to death. Twitter Party memorial Friday.”

    You need to get yourself a Shannan…and pay closer attention to the stove.
    .-= Amy´s last blog ..AT&T #CalmCoolConnected Twitter Party Friday =-.

  • Julie Roads says:

    That’s so great, Amy – and I really think I have 3 Shannan’s…but still.

    Yes, Amanda – we will have dinner before I die. I promise.

  • Edgy Mama says:

    This totally made me laugh. Not because you potentially dying is funny, but because I think about the same stuff all the time.

    I really used to worry when my kids were babes, and my husband would be traveling. What if I fell down the basement steps at 9 p.m.? Then I’m dead on the concrete floor, and the house catches on fire, because I’ve left water on to boil for tea, and the kids die in their cribs? Ugh.

    I think there are always going to be times when we’re out of reach–even though it’s less so today than in times past. So I guess we set up back-up plans, but know that nothing’s fail safe.

    P.S. Please don’t die before this weekend, kay?
    .-= Edgy Mama´s last blog ..Support Google fiber for Asheville! =-.

  • Julie Roads says:

    AF – I wouldn’t dream of it. Just think, you and me and our neuroses on the loose in the City. Alisa, of course, has none to add…cough, cough

  • Alisa Bowman says:

    Oh honey, glad you are still with us.

    What can I say? We all got to go at some point, and it truly doesn’t matter all that much how long we’ve been dead before someone finds us. If someone, say, happened to walk in while you were choking to death and gave you the Heimlich, yes. But say you’ve already choked to death? 24 hours later, 48 hours later, 6 weeks later? Matters very little. Your body is still going to decompose, whether someone finds you or not.

    Wow, I’m dark and dreary today. I promise to lighten up by the weekend!
    .-= Alisa Bowman´s last blog ..I Had a Dream =-.

  • Julie Roads says:

    For Christ’s sake, Alisa!!! Yes, please lighten up by Friday.

  • Shauna says:

    I am pretty sure that any code word or alert button would be fairly ineffective over here. Can you say “the boy who cried wolf”? I would get that code word 10 times a day. Sure of it.

    And BTW – glad you’re alive and well.

  • Julie Roads says:

    Oh, Shauna…you know you love me. And all of the work I feed you. But you’re right – we’d need to codewords. One for Julie emergencies, and one for real ones.

  • Shauna says:

    Yes – there is definitely a difference between “Julie emergencies” and real ones. Although they are all the same in my book. ;)
    .-= Shauna´s last blog ..Still cant get past this Puma thing.. =-.

  • Dina Lyons says:

    Glad you’re okay! How about getting a parakeet? :)

    • Julie Roads says:

      Now that’s a good idea! Because I’m telling you that Veronica the Fish was not concerned for me at all.

  • --Deb says:

    Or a rice cooker?
    .-= –Deb´s last blog ..MM: Don’t Say That! =-.

  • I am torn between “this is a really cute post that made me laugh” and “this is a really scary post that makes me paranoid”. But, leaning more towards, a great post that made me laugh and is super clever, including the nice wrap up in the last line!

    BTW, just in case anyone needs that help button, check it out…
    .-= Britt Michaelian´s last blog ..Are You Avoiding Your Paperwork? =-.

  • (Now the Jewish mother in me is gonna worry about you. So thank goodness you post regularly.) My hubby and I have decided we no longer will leave the stove on without a LOUD timer set to go off to remind us to turn off the gas. I can hear the timer in my study.
    ~ Arlene

    • Julie Roads says:

      Thanks, Arlene…my own Jewish mother hasn’t read this yet. I’m waiting for the phone call.
      I’ll tell her that you’re on it. Love your idea.

  • Lovelyn says:

    This actually happened to me once or twice. Once with the stove and another time with the oven. I’m a bit clumsy or careless at times. Anyway, lucky for me my husband is a freelance musician and he’s home most days. I work in the living room and he works in the bedroom. Either he’ll be able to save me or my carelessness will kill us both.
    .-= Lovelyn´s last blog ..Echinacea Tea and Other Natural Cold Remedies =-.

  • Andi says:

    I worry about you when I don’t see a daily post, but then again since you don’t post on the weekend, something could happen to you on Friday night and I wouldn’t get worried until Monday midday…yeah we need a code word!
    .-= Andi´s last blog ..March Five =-.

  • It’s a rare writer who gets to avoid a deadline by dying at her desk. Forget about it. But do check your stove from time to time. We’d hate to lose you.
    .-= Marion Roach Smith´s last blog ..Imagery of Sisterhood, and Spring =-.

  • Van says:

    I suffer from the same vivid imagination…so I don’t allow myself to watch horror movies if I don’t have a friend spend the night with me. Last time I watched “Psycho” I took baths instead of showers for weeks. (I live alone, every creek in my old apartment sounded like murder coming for me.)
    .-= Van´s last blog ..What Song Sums up Your Style? =-.

  • jenni says:

    omg. so glad you made it! it’s funny when we have this little lone crises (or near-death experiences) and then just return to our daily deadlines. shortly after a small explosion on my ceiling, I wondered whether I still might have time to get a manicure before I had to meet my dad for dinner. priorities, you know?

  • Dave Doolin says:

    My rice is covered: 5 cup National Rice Cooker With Delicious Fuzzy Logic (I swear I’m not making this up).

    But yeah, it helps to have checking in. I do.
    .-= Dave Doolin´s last blog ..Persistence – the critical trait for success, in any endeavor =-.

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