Multitasking has a definition that includes the words "apparent ability." This definition also includes the words "perform more than one task." And somewhere in there is the phrase "over a short period of time." Some of us are very new to Pressure Canning, and one of the early lessons is to avoid over confidence by, for example, nipping outside to quickly trim a ragged Forsythia, or by composing an email to the DNC suggesting that The President might not want me to wish him a Happy Birthday and if I wanted to wish him a Happy Birthday I'm perfectly capable of doing it without being asked to contribute to the finances of a cowardly oligarchy and all very Grass Roots being enthusiastic about small contributions because it looks good on the resume, but frankly "bite me with your chipping in to the Danegeld, it's not yet the Medieval Period!" And before you know it the thing that hisses is toggling badly, there are loud jets of steam and the Girl Cat is running for her private Tornado Shelter leaving me to fend for myself.
It's the case that a little Forsythia trimming and composing the odd email while
waiting for the Pressure Cooker to work through its various moods and opinions
might be considered an example of a person being useful "While Waiting" rather
than the stricter definition of Multitasking in "perform more than one task." I
mean there are phases in the Pressure Canning Process during which there's
actually nothing constructive to do this side of standing there staring at one
part or other of the Pressure Canner and wondering which part will break first.
I imagine the more experienced Pressure Canners have long since quelled any
restlessness they might once have felt "While Waiting," entered a sort of quasi
worshipful state of higher being-ness, the "I am what I am" of almost the entire
universe, a humility that comes difficult to some of us. Anyway, belated Happy
Birthday Mr. President and while Pressure Canning there'll be no more composing
emails, or hedge trimming from me, consider it a gift from me to you, Your