In 1999, when I was still in the adult education business, a typical class day was eight hours with two fifteen minute breaks flanking an hour for lunch. That was the year we crashed into virtual learning, which was a maximum of two hours a day. That's changed, but two hours is what we started with. Our VP slapped a Just in Time label on it and off we went.
She had a point.
Two days ago I took fiddle and bow out of the case, tuned the fiddle, rosined the bow and left them sitting on the bed which just happens to be three inches from my desk. Truthfully, I had no idea what I'd do with that scenario but the plan was to periodically pick up fiddle and bow and play something. At the very least, run up and down the scales. I'm still getting used to that new bridge.
Two things happened, but I only caught on to the second at yesterday's lesson.
I did get up. I usually get up and walk around to clear my head. I do this four or five times a day. Because I didn't slap a minimum anything on that instrument, I did pick it up periodically. Three or four times that day, in roughly fifteen minute increments. I'll call that sixty minutes of play time which is far less than the sum of the total.
My lessons are at 8 AM on Wednesdays. I arrived with my instruments tuned and we moved into warmup.
Result: significantly better than last week AND I appeared to have memorized the first four phrases of Old Joe Clark which is a bloody miracle. I never learn a tune that fast. I seem to average one or two phrases at a time and even that's a struggle. I learn the second, and forget the first, I learn the third and forget the first two, and it isn't until the end of the forth that I start picking up the first three, like dropped stitches.
I'll leave that as is for now because I've got way too much $%%#^ to accomplish today. Why? Because yesterday I broke more shit than I fixed or accomplished. Why? Two much too fast with consistent disruption. My Virtual Machine fell down and couldn't get up. This resulted in at least four hours of tech time. Watching a cursor randomly delete keys from the registry (that doesn't have to make sense, just assume it's a REALLY, REALLY BAD THING) did more than disrupt the workday. It disrupted the thought and learning process which results in possibly even worse bad things.
It's still not right.
One more thought. We use one chunk of the brain for one thing, and another chunk entirely for another. Nothing against cube chat (I'm a big fan in building relationship), but what would happen if we turned off our monitors and used the other part of the brain in fifteen minute increments three or four times a day? Randomly.
I didn't touch an instrument after my lesson yesterday. I did get up and start a loaf of bread, but that wasn't enough. I did get up and walk the perimeter of the cleared part of the property, but that wasn't enough. I expect a three mile hard walk wouldn't have been enough, but I've got a feeling today might be a little different. Today the fiddle and bow come back out of the case. I'm starting to think of it as a plate of chocolates. Except better.