This past weekend I had about 4000 items unread on Google Reader. While usually I do my best to make sure every item is read every day, this past week, I wasn’t in any mood to read too much of off google reader. So the news items piled to the Tower of Babel.
I can’t tell the exact number I left unread, but I know that every morning at about 6 am after having read through midnight, I can expect up to about 400-500 unread items. So hence, a week of not really reading anything except choice psychology and anthropology articles made about 4000+ items I left unread.
Imagine my relief when I finally pared that number to 880 items. But the ultimate goal is to trim that number down to zero items unread, a point where I have skimmed through all the relevant news.
However, somewhere in the middle of this rummage through unread items, probably at about 550 items, I felt something strange as I was approaching the edge of zero. I felt the urge to take a break. Do something else, then get on with this shit later. After all, I was tired…mentally.
Am I processing so much that I get tired? Physically, everything in my external body was working right. My eyes weren’t straining (till now), posture was fine. Mentally, I was genuinely being intrigued by found items on the internetz, but still I found the need to take a break despite being very close to the end. But being tired mentally doesn’t seem to make too much sense to me. Why do I even get that urge to take a break?
Being close to the end, perhaps I just remembered how far I had to come to clear the items in google reader, and suddenly the mental fatigue sets in.
I wonder…if I didn’t have any memory of how far I had to go, would I have been better able to read through and complete the task? If I destroyed my short-term and the parts of memory that know I have traveled far, would I have been able to proceed through the task without having the need for a break?