You know the kids’ book, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie? It’s the story of how a simple act of giving a mouse a cookie can lead to a whole series of events. Well, that kind of happened to me last week.

I have a problem waiting. I like to be doing things. But in publishing you do a lot of waiting. So to keep my mind off all the waiting I’m doing I usually find a project around the house to work on. I decided to tackle the office . . .

If you give Jennifer a desk, she’ll have to make room for it in her garage. And then, when it gets to be 100 degrees outside, she’ll probably want to park her car in the garage. So the desk will have to go inside. But if the desk is going to go inside, one of the desks currently in the office will have to be moved. When you move one of the desks, she will want to rearrange all of the desks and bookcases. While you’re rearranging everything, she’ll decide to paint the walls.

After she’s painted the walls and rearranged all the desks and bookcases, she’ll bring in the new desk. Only to discover there are no brackets to hold the legs to the top. The desk will topple over on her, adding to the bruise collection on her legs. So she’ll haul the desk back to the garage.

Then you’ll have to take her to Staples where she’ll find the perfect desk at the perfect price. The perfect desk will require perfect desk accessories. She’ll spend the better part of a day putting the desk together, accessorizing it, and organizing. When the desk is finished it will require matching shelves above it to complete the look. So you’ll make yet another trip to Home Depot.

When you get home and the shelves are installed and stacked with books, she’ll put her computer on her desk and open it. When she opens it, she’ll want to check her e-mail. Her empty e-mail inbox will remind her that she is still waiting.

And while she’s waiting, she’ll probably want to start on another project . . .