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I should know by now. . .I really should! But apparently I must be hit over the head with a brick-bat – not just once – but over and over and OVER again!!!!!!
Right at the moment I am hopping mad at myself! I had a surgeon – one of the guys who first attempted repair of my damaged right hand. I was complaining (I would rather call it “commenting,” but I’m being honest here) that the last surgery I had, had not really done for me what I had hoped and planned on. The doctor said that there were a couple more things he could try, but he felt I had achieved maximum results. I insisted – I wanted to try everything possible to give me more use of my poor hand. He agreed to go forward with the surgery, but before agreeing to it he made the following statement:
“BETTER IS THE ENEMY OF GOOD.“
That’s all well and good, but what happens when I want to make what is “OK” or “GOOD,” “BETTER” – especially when “GOOD” is really only “GOOD ENOUGH?” I was the patient, after all – who but I should determine what is good enough? Well, the upshot of that surgery was that my hand wasn’t much, if at all, better, but I was cheered (I guess) that it wasn’t “WORSE.”
Now, wait a minute! Hold it! Whatever happened to “BEST???” I mean, shouldn’t I at least strive for it? And, who decides what is “BEST?” Well, I decided today that I do! Therein lies the saga of today, me, and my blog posts. . .and the ensuing Aaarrrrrrrhhhhgggggghhhh!!!!!
Last night, while lying awake (again), I decided to peruse my own blog – Mistake #1. I never should have started reading my own work – leave the past right where it belongs – in the past, as in over and done with, finito! But did I? No. Of course not! What was the matter with trying to improve yesterday’s poem? I found some stylistic errors that I had not seen when I hastily wrote that little poetic endeavor, and lest anyone notice (and be too polite to mention it), I was going to do some editing and then repost it. Just in case some poor devoted soul should decide to go back and read it again. (Of course they would – I did, after all!) So I started Mistake #2:
I started fiddling with it – the style, rhyme scheme, meaning, form, photos – you name it, I fiddled with it. And fiddled with it . . .and fiddled with it some more. . .and some more. . . By that time, about 4 hours had gone by, and even though I was sleepy (and actually could have slept!), I just had to finish it. I was a writer (uh-huh!), and by golly, I was going to write and that included all that writing entailed; i.e., editing, changing, re-writing, perfecting. Right. Mistake #3:
Changing the photo layout. Why? you ask. I DON’T KNOW WHY!!!!! If I was using good reasoning, I would have known why, and nixed the idea. The photos were OK, and they illustrated the reason for the post in the first place, but because I had changed the essential meaning/reason for the poem, I felt I needed another photo. Cut to Mistake #4:
Changing the layout, AGAIN. I assumed I knew how to accomplish this maneuver in Word Press style. I didn’t. After changing, adding, deleting, changing again, deleting it all, uploading more photos, inserting (incorrectly), deleting, then uploading them all again, after trying to arrange them again, botching that, then trying to preview the changes, and discovering that I had somehow managed to put about 30 lines of empty space, left off the end photo, and misplaced my traditional “enough. . .” tag line. What to do, what to do? Why not commit Mistake #5:
Don’t read the directions! Why not just surf the web and ask stupid, unclear questions, of people just as clueless as I am? So I did – for about 1½ hours. I eventually ended up going back to my dashboard, clicking the help button, typing in my question, and discovering how easy it was. Don’t use the gallery setting, simply use “add media,” download the photos you want, and inserting them wherever you decide to add them. Easy as pie, right? Except you are forgetting – and so did I, which was Mistake #6:
I have a new laptop, and having never had a touch pad, I have not become accustomed to the quirks of using it. I’ll start a sentence, decide to edit by adding italics (a lot!), resume typing, and discover that the cursor has moved, and I have just typed the sentence in the middle of some words about three paragraphs above where I wanted to type it. Edit again, then realize that for some reason or other I had pressed the italics button, and then I had to edit that, and when I resumed typing discover that the cursor was in the last place it had landed, and the typing is once again in the middle of the wrong sentence. I found out that when you stop typing for long enough, the cursor goes to its previous spot, and back to italics again. Lather, rinse, repeat. Again, again, again. . .ad infinitum. I finally realized that the best way to italicize is to wait until the end of the post, and then go back and edit where you want them. But I’m not finished yet, because here comes Mistake #7:
I find out that the original poem I had written had somehow been erased completely. I spent over an hour trying to recreate it before I remembered that I had posted the original poem on WEbook in my project “Odes to the Everyday.” Guess what? Mistake #8:
I realized that in searching for the original, I had navigated away from the rewrite page, and – even though it warned me – I thought I had saved it and still had my rewrite. Well, I did have a rewrite, but not the last three lines I had written to replace a rhyming and grammar error, which was the reason for rewriting it in the first place! I managed to remember what the corrections were, which became Mistake #9:
Thinking that this whole ordeal was worth the 13½ hours I had spent on redoing something that probably wasn’t worth it, and that nobody would read (especially me!). At least it is saved for posterity – my grandchildren, starting with Zoë, will someday want to find the reason their grandmother was in the looney bin.
And so I close my embarrassing enumeration of errors with Mistake #10: writing this ridiculous post, thereby subjecting myself to more of the same problems with learning my laptop that I had in rewriting that earlier post. Of course, I have simultaneously subjected my patient Gentle Readers with reading about the whole affair – so I do apologize, but I also thank you for letting me get this off my chest – except it took me 3½ hours to write it, edit it, re-edit it, go back to the first draft, then seeing that I had somehow erased (and was unable to recover) my mistakes #6 and #7. I added them back, after figuring out what they were. THAT, I remembered right away.
Turns out the Dr. was right –
“BETTER IS THE ENEMY OF GOOD.“
and, as I have learned:
BEST, FOR ME, IS IMPOSSIBLE!!
So, if you all don’t mind, I think that is quite – *sigh* – enough. . .