Sunday, August 5, 2012
Delays and Excuses
So remember how I said last week was a reading week? Well, I’m still reading. I went all the way back to the beginning, and it takes time to work through all that text. Man, I wrote a lot. I could probably use a good editor. Except that she (or he) would probably cross out all my adverbs, and that would just piss me off.
So I’m not ready to present a new semi-chapter of my ongoing book. My next thought was to fall back on a technical blog, but I’m not ready there either. I’ve got a couple of really good ideas, but I’ve not had the time to work on them sufficiently to make them ready for blogination. In at least one case, I think I could actually slap together a CPAN module, which would be pretty exciting. Of course, to do that, I’d probably need to finish my Dist::Zilla customizations which I’ve been working on forever—well, I don’t need to, per se, but it would be more convenient, and I really want to finish that anyway. Except, I got stuck on this other thing that I wanted to do for that, and I ended up making a suggestion to another CPAN author and then I agreed to do the thing with the thing and ...
Sometimes I worry that I’m too much of a perfectionist. I do like things to be just right. Sort of like Tolkien was ... or at least, like what the stuff I’ve read about Tolkien indicates that he was. He always wanted to create just one more grammatical construct in Elven, detail just one more century of Númenorean history, retranslate just one more line of Beowulf ... so much so that he had difficulty fininshing things, at least according to some. Not that I’m claiming to be as brilliant as Tolkien, of course—I still have some modesty—I’m just saying that perhaps I feel his pain.
I’ve often been told that Meg Whitman was fond of saying that ”‘perfect’ is the enemy of ‘good enough.’” To which my response is, generally, “perhaps, but ‘good enough’ is often the enemy of ‘we’d like to have it last for a while instead of falling apart due to shoddy craftmanship which was deemed “good enough” at the time.’” Still, there’s no doubt that Meg’s formulation is pithier than mine, so probably hers is more true.
That was a bit of sarcasm there. Sorry.
Still, one can’t deny that she (or, if we want to be pedantic about it, Voltaire, who originally said “Le mieux est l’ennemi du bien”) has a point. As you may guess from my previous posts, I think the truth lies somewhere in the middle. But the tricky part is knowing where to draw the line.
Today I’m leaning a bit more toward the “perfect” than the “good enough.” Although, one could make the argument that, in settling for this particular blog post (which is about a third as long as I normally strive for), I’m actually taking a pretty firm stance on the “good enough” side. But mainly I’m saying I want a little more time to polish things.
Also, I’ve been putting in an unusual number of work hours lately, and that ain’t helping. Plus ... I ran out gas. I had a flat tire. I didn’t have enough money for cab fare. My tux didn’t come back from the cleaners. An old friend came in from out of town. Someone stole my car. There was an earthquake. A terrible flood. Locusts!
Or, er, something like that. Yeah, that’s the ticket.*
* Eek! Stop me before I cross-reference again!**
** Too late: SNL trifecta.