I used to play chess, long ago (as Dennis Fischman, my teammate, reminded me last winter!), in which endeavor one of the celebrated events is the “simultaneous exhibition.” A strong chess player can examine and understand games well enough to play on numerous simultaneously (one by one, to be exact). I have enough difficulty playing at all that I would never dream of trying that — my main accomplishment since high school has been beating Nate and Si while playing blindfolded (to their amazement, and my own surprise).
I started working through my email inbox this morning at about nine o’clock, and am just now modulating to other productive modes of labor, and I haven’t even answered all the mail I got. This feels less like a simultaneous chess match than like playing tennis simultaneously on several courts at once.