The Multitaskers. When life hands them two options, they make it three (and take a phone call, feed the dog and walk the cat while making their choice. Why they are walking a cat, none of us will ever know. But we are too overawed to ask). If offered an upgrade, they ask to use two deals at the same time. Multitaskers may not be super-human… But they act like it. They may not be superheros… but you'd be forgiven for thinking so.
Now, at this point I could make blanket assertions about women being light years ahead of men in the multitasking arena and how, while women may not be able to compete against men in weightlifting divisions, they would be heavyweights in multitasking championships (oh look, a new sporting idea. Someone needs to get onto that. While doing something else). But instead I will refer the reader to Google, that veritable treasure of (generally unworthy) information where a quick image search of the term "Multitasking" yields results which make the case for themselves.
A picture is worth a thousand words, and with one million, six hundred and seventy thousand search results, that is a lot of words' worth (ha! Wordsworth), most of which point to the fact that women are better at multitasking than men. In amongst pictures of harried-looking men wielding phones, computers and briefcases flash up (and, strangely enough, Barack Obama writing with two hands simultaneously), is an image of a woman serenely surfing the internet, talking on the phone, and nursing her baby while lounging in an armchair.
Motherhood. A word that heralds a whole new level of multitasking for women far and wide (and one which, incidentally, I know nothing about). But I will tell you who does know a thing or two about it: Kim Clijsters. Yes, the tennis champion's last three Grand Slam wins were all the grander as she juggled motherhood with world class tennis, becoming the third mother in history to win the title. Rather than becoming an infomercial host or protein shake spokesperson once her daughter was born, Kim thought "Hey, now would be a great time to start a second career". So she did.
Two US Opens, one Australian Open and a WTA Tour Championship followed in close succession. In the year after she returned to tennis, Clijsters became the only player to have beaten both Venus and Serena Williams in the same tournament twice and won the Laureus World Sports Award for her remarkable comeback. This year's Time Magazine Top 100 most influential people placed Kim at number sixteen, the highest ranking sportsperson, as she has turned the work-life balance into an art form…And done it with panache.
So Kim, on behalf of multitaskers around the world (and those aspiring to join their number), we salute you. May we reach higher heights, take on greater obstacles, and win greater battles. Simultaneously.