Nothing in Particular


Ah, the dreaded writers’ block has taken over and for once I may have absolutely nothing to say. On the other hand, surely I can come up with something, yes? Actually, I put out the call for subject matter and so I do have two things to address – which may or may not make any sense whatsoever, and which may lead to other things as well. And which, of course, are completely unrelated.

Let’s tackle the DIY versus calling a paid professional.

Everyone should probably know how to do basic home repairs, such as fixing a leaky faucet, a running toilet, a clogged, um, dishwasher, and so forth. It’s not too hard; you can tinker around a bit without seriously impairing the appliance even more. Usually. I’ve been know, long ago, to take things apart and have no earthly idea how to put them back together again. Fortunately, I’ve also known several people who could come to the rescue.

I enjoy doing these types of things; whether or not I have an aptitude for them remains to be seen. When I was about eight years old, I took apart the doorknob to my grandma’s basement door – it wasn’t locking properly, and it still doesn’t to this day. Next, I took apart the doorknob to the breezeway – this venture was successful.

Over the years, I’ve changed the oil in my car, fixed a few more doors and doorknobs, replaced the innards on a couple toilets, changed washers in faucets, all those sorts of things. Now I’d rather not, just because my husband can and will do those things; but sometimes I have to wait a while.

I believe I’ve saved quite a bit of money going this route – I have never had to pay a plumber, or an electrician. And my husband and I have an arrangement regarding home improvement: I have the ideas and he does the work. It’s not that I can’t, or that I stand around useless while he works. I do, however, stand around while he “thinks”. It drives me nuts. So I plan, he implements. We started with wallpaper and a kitchen addition, and have moved on to tile, laminate, new doorways and, of course, landscaping. Saved another fortune (though why we’re always broke, I sure don’t know!).

My rule of thumb is this: have the tools, know how to use them, develop a basic understanding of appliance, machinery, what-have-you, and try it yourself. If it doesn’t work, call someone – husband, dad, or friend; if your whatchamacallit is still out-of-order, it’s time for a professional. Why pay someone to do something you can do yourself? I’ve asked this question regarding things like accounting, taxes, and house cleaning; seems pretty simple.

Of course, there are times when you just don’t want to do something yourself. So call someone. It’s not a failure, it certainly doesn’t mean you’re lazy; you may just not want to go to the trouble. But it will cost. Oh, and if you don’t have a clue as to what you’re doing – again, call someone. Let’s say you want a new doorway into the dining room. You have no idea if there are wires inside the wall, or if it’s load-bearing; you could conceivably cause a lot of damage and the payout will be far more than if you’d initially called a professional. Before you dig in to any type of project, try to imagine the worst that could happen; then decide if the cost is worth it.

Well, that was pretty disjointed and rambling, yes? The next topic is writing about nothing. That’s correct, writing about nothing. Today’s blog just may be a good example of that!

Sometimes when I sit down to write, I just want to write – that’s it, no big secret. Sometimes stuff just comes to me, sometimes I’m inspired by an incident during the day or am just feeling very strongly about a particular topic; sometimes I look to outside sources, like politics, a news story, or an issue a friend is having.

Then there are days like this. Days in which I have no particular interest in mind, days in which I can’t focus (not many of those, thank heavens!), days in which I’m just tired or in physical pain and can’t seem to get in gear – those aren’t very frequent either.

Sometimes we all have to give ourselves permission to let go, be and do and think absolutely nothing; sometimes we all have to take the time to get our act together or our heads on straight or any other colloquialism that comes to mind.

Everyone has days like that. So just let go, go with the flow, and try not to litter your conversation (or blog) with too many clichés; it seems to just make your head spin a bit more. If you try to force yourself to be productive or compliant or energetic – it just makes things worse, or so it seems. So take a deep breath, move on to something else, and start over again later, or the next day. Things work out, one way or another; they always do.

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