Tuesday, August 22, 2006

In the Words of Snoopy: Arrrrrrgh!

Once again, good intentions have proven to be inadequate. I am trying very hard to make regular posts so as to develop trust in my handful of regular readers to increase the amount and variety of content for search engine fodder. My Saturday night away from the web is unavoidable for another couple of months but I am trying to avoid missing more than one day in a row. So I was really, really intent on getting something posted during my Sunday night session. But my niece was once again spending the weekend with her Grandmother--my mother-in-law--and we spent the evening and most of the night chatting about this and that. Mostly about reading and writing. Part of my reason for starting Joystory and her sister sites Joyread and Joywrite (see sidebar for links) was to alleviate my sense of loneliness at not having someone to share my passions for words, story and ideas with. So I guess it is understandable that I found it hard to exchange a face-to-face confab for writing into the mostly unresponsive ether. I had a blast during my Sunday night session showing my niece around my sites, showing her my WYSIWYG so I could show her the HTML that creates the pages she sees online. Basically, just showing off.

As for Monday night’s session…in the words of Snoopy: Arrrrrrgh! I started out early--before ten--with high energy and ambitions. I spent about an hour on the library site, renewing items on both mine and my husband’s accounts, sending for more items, and other tasks. I was just about to get started on my serious business when AOL decided it was imperative to download and install updates and began to hog the computer’s attention. Although I was allowed to continue working while the download progressed, everything was aggravatingly slow. Nor did I trust that anything I worked on inside an online platform--from blog posting and commenting, sidebar editing, file uploading, to email composing--would be safe, so I did not begin anything that involved them. Good thing too. For when the download finished the first thing the installation wizard did was disconnect me and close AOL. Without warning let alone asking for permission! Whenever this happens I feel like throwing a temper tantrum!!! OK, deep breath. Sigh. I have control issues.

The next thing I knew, the installation wizard was demanding that I close all open applications. This included about a dozen browser windows and several word-processor windows. I am a multi-tasker. Or ADD according to my sister. Take your pick. Anyway, I complied and fully expected that once the installation was complete I would be required to restart. When the command to do so did not come though, I considered the fact that it had been more than five days and so did it anyway so I could hope to have more than a couple days to keep projects open on my taskbar. I keep so many windows open at once both because I am constantly moving from one to another and because I suffer from the ‘out of sight is out of mind’ gene.

So, by the time I got back online it was after three and I was starting to feel the pressure of time. While I tried to settle on what I was going to post about, I continued to chase down the various blog and news and views pages that I frequent. I wasn’t taking the time to read more than a few sentences on any one as I was just collecting them for reading later as is my habit. While on Write Stuff though I saw the blogroll that Karen created and is encouraging other writers to take and use on their sidebars. This reminded me that it was on my agenda for this week to get that installed on Joystory’s sidebar. I decided that it was as good a time as any. I ran into some snags in the process and by the time I had it right my mother-in-law was up and I had to clear off line and out of the living room.

I fully intended to get back online as soon as my husband left for work between seven-thirty and eight. Meanwhile, I would work on the book review for Madeleine Albright’s The Mighty & the Almighty, which my husband was going to be dropping off at the library on his way to work along with the other items that did not renew. This part went according to plan. Except that I continued to work on the book review for another hour after the book had departed with my husband. Then I decided that I was obviously not going to get that prepared for posting in good time so I had better start working on something else and I had better get whatever it was ready before I went back online. So I started working on this in my word processor. About an hour and four paragraphs into it, I was trying to use the control-S key combo to save my work when my fingers slipped and something I did closed the file instead. I lost all but the first paragraph and had to rewrite them from memory. That was more than an hour ago. I have a bit more than an hour left before my mother-in-law is due home. So if I’m going to get this posted this morning I had better get it done.

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