When I am in the throes (I just love that word; don't you? it's so...passionate *sighs*) of writing, I can be a titch absent-minded. Somewhat forgetful. Less than fully attentive to my surroundings.
Oh, all right. When grappling with a sticky plot point, I'd forget to brush my own teeth if TG didn't wrinkle his nose when he came in for a kiss.
Having come to accept this as yet another of my, um, charming quirks, I've developed a coping mechanism: a towel.
(Hey, it was good enough for Arthur Dent in The Hitchhiker's Guide books.)
My towel is a handy-dandy kitchen towel, always within easy reach. While I'm not sure it would do much good on a trip around the galaxy, it does serve nicely as a memory aid, much like a string around the finger.
(Which, frankly, I never understood. How does one tie a string around one's own finger? Seems unnecessarily difficult.)
Anyway, here's how it works: whenever I know I'll need to remember something, I simply place the towel in the appropriate place to joggle my memory. Since it disturbs my innate sense of order to see towels off their designated rack (yes, I am selectively anal-retentive), seeing one lying around where it shouldn't be will grab my attention, thus bringing to the fore whatever it is I need to remember. Brilliant, huh?
For instance, putting the towel on the door to the basement thusly....
... reminds me to move the laundry from the washer to the dryer, the W/D being in the basement. No more mildewed clothing for me!
When I see it on the fridge, I know instantly to get the white wine out of the freezer (there because I earlier forgot to chill it) before the bottle becomes one huge wine-sicle. (Though grape is a lovely flavor for frozen treats.)
Draped over my handbag, it reminds me not to leave the house without retrieving my recharged cell phone from the kitchen counter.
When it dangles from the chandelier in the dining room, it's a gentle admonition to dust the light fixture before the in-laws come over for dinner, so I won't be embarrassed (again) by cobwebs exposed in candlelight.
The all-purpose stair placement means simply, don't effing forget (again!) whatever it was you intended to take up with you the last time you went upstairs.
On the door out to the garage: Stop! Go to the fridge and get the side dish you promised to bring to dinner at your friends' place.
Oh, one of my favorites: open a bottle and let it breathe before the guests get here.
My "personal assistant" even doubles as a secretary, leaving me a textile memo to remind me I better get a blog post written before I start that game of Free Cell.
And, finally, a grooming aid: this color won't go with what you're wearing later--repaint!
How about y'all? How do you keep your scattered thoughts corralled enough to function when your mind is occupied elsewhere?