My Double-Commute into the Office this Morning

Thursday mornings I volunteer in the Little Man’s school library, shelving books. I do it from 6 – 7 am. It’s a nice way of getting an hour of volunteer work in each week. This morning, as I headed out the door at 5:45, it was already raining out. The school is a 6 minute drive from the house. I got there, went inside, did my work, and managed to get it all done by 6:45 am. So I headed into the office.

I am fortunate to live 5 miles from my office, against traffic both ways. When I don’t have to drop kids off or pick them up from school, my commute takes 12 minutes. That turned out to be particularly fortunate this morning.

I pulled into my parking spot at work, got out of the car, and then habitually checked my pockets for keys, as I always do when I get out of the car. To my dismay, I found two sets of keys. Which meant that Kelly was home without any keys. This is due entirely to breaking my routine last night. Normally, I hang my keys on the key rack, and grab them before heading out the door in the morning. It is automatic. Last night, I left my keys on my desk, so I grabbed them this morning and put them in my pocket before heading downstairs. When I left the house, I passed by the key rack, grabbed the keys hanging there, and headed out the door.

So I got back in the car, and headed out into the rain, arriving home about 12 minutes later. I dropped off the keys, explained my folly, and then headed back into the car, and arrived at work 15 minutes later. A double-commute!

As far as I know, it’s the first time I’ve performed that particular folly, and it just goes to show that while routines can be good, when broken, they can be annoyingly bad, too.

Published by Jamie Todd Rubin

Jamie Todd Rubin writes fiction and nonfiction for a variety of publications including Analog, Clarkesworld, The Daily Beast, 99U, Daily Science Fiction, Lightspeed, InterGalactic Medicine Show, and several anthologies. He was featured in Lifehacker’s How I Work series. He has been blogging since 2005. By day, he manages software projects and occasionally writes code. He lives in Falls Church, Virginia with his wife and three children. Find him on Twitter at @jamietr.