In Which I Describe My Lovely Saturday

Saturday, October 07 2006

Today was full of ambition, full of failure. To start:

Went to get the truck’s crunchy feeling brake pads replaced. Had an appointment and everything, and after the mechanic looked at if for two hours, he came back out and said “All set, we made some adjustments and replaced your wiper blades. And oh, the only way to fix that crunchy feeling is to replace your brake pads, otherwise the rotor will get messed up.”

I asked if he could just do that now, and, seriously, he said “Oh, well, we’re all booked up now, you’ll have to make an appointment.”

Later on I figured I’d have a better hand at making some code work for a client project I’m finishing up. In this case, I needed to get ImageMagick and Ruby to work nicely with each other on my machine.

Let me just say this – if the journey to get that combo working starts in say, Los Angeles, then the destination is, I don’t know, somewhere at the core of Jupiter. I have never in my life seen such a brittle installation of software. One part requires another part, which requires another part of a certain version, which in turn needs all parts to be Capricorns unless they were born in a leap year at which point they need be Sagitarius, and you must make sure you already have a natural gas dryer, fourteen boa constrictors, three of them female, an Audi Quattro balancing on two wheels, a Pygmy who can speak Mandarin while feeding narcaleptic goats with his belly button, and a bathtub full of nachos, cats, and silent children.

And so, I spent nearly my entire day working feverishly, but getting absolutely nothing accomplished.

This sort of thing grinds me up because it’s hard enough to get deeply into flow in the first place to solve these kinds of problems – when it’s fruitless is seems like all the more the waste, and especially so when you’re working on a Saturday so that when Monday comes you can work on the good stuff without feeling swamped.