Flowers in California

Flowers in California

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Feedback I Fear

Awaiting feedback on a piece of writing/editing that I submitted recently, I was (and still am) feeling uncomfortable about the reaction it will receive.  I decided to document the kind of letter I most fear.  I hope I'm now more ready to deal with whatever feedback I do receive.  Hopefully it will not be quite this bad.

Dear Joanne:

We received your piece of writing.  Normally we would thank a writer at this point but, in this case, we do not find it appropriate to do so.

Your work on this piece was not what we expected.  Our concerns go so much beyond this one piece, though.  We suggest you find someone to go through the rest of the letter with you.  For one thing, you may find some of the content upsetting.  Also, we think you may need help with some of the larger words.

We are concerned about your state of mind.  Writing such as yours does not come from a healthy place.  And whatever events in your life led you to believe you have any writing ability were misinterpreted.  Clearly your judgment is very poor.

While we hope you understand by this point that we will not be using this piece, we must brace you for some more bad news.  Based on this one document and the questions it has raised about you, we have chosen to revoke your membership in our association.  Your fees will be refunded and, more importantly in our view, we will direct you to the professionals you need.  We believe that the team we put together will have a chance of making some degree of progress with you.  That is our hope.

We understand that you may be somewhat disappointed by this turn of events.  So are we.  We wish you good luck in your future endeavours and fervently hope that they will not be in the writing field.  That would be best for everyone concerned.

People Who Know

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Look Out! I Tried to Sew!

No one got hurt.  While I can be grateful for that, I am troubled by the experience I had moments ago with my sewing machine.  Really, it's what I should have expected.  The last time I remember using my sewing machine was in 2003.  I was trying to make some changes to a Halloween costume for my son.  It was on Halloween.  I thought of throwing the machine out the front door.  Halloween is, of course, one of the worst days to randomly throw large heavy objects out the front door but we don't get a lot of trick-or-treaters so it probably would have been ok.

I think I can sew.  It's difficult to prove that but I think Ms. Koenig taught me pretty well in Junior High.  I made an apron that looked like an apron and a cushion that looked like a tooth.  It was supposed to be a rabbit but somehow its yellowness made it more like Murphy the Molar.  I also took lessons at Singer.  .

Perhaps if I had bought a Singer sewing machine, all would have been well.  The machine I bought has a vertical bobbin.  That seems unnecessarily cruel.  Right now, I have the bobbin and all bobbin-related pieces lying on the kitchen table.  If I could properly install them, I think I might have a chance of sewing some day.

I will spend some more time looking at the instruction manual.  It hasn't helped out a lot so far.  It devotes an inordinate amount of time to how to attach the power supply.  I had managed to figure that part out rather quickly.  And by page 4 it lists "Available Accessories and Attachments."  I really don't think more pieces are the answer.  The biggest problem I have with the manual, though, is that under "Care of Your Machine" it doesn't warn against throwing it out the front door.  It leaves that tempting option on the table.  I can't guarantee I won't pursue it.

I would like to be able to sew the occasional straight line on curtains or pillows.  I don't have great sewing ambitions.  It's frustrating when a piece of machinery stands in my way.  I am going to try once more to get it working.  Thus, in the interest of safety, I advise everyone to stay away from the front of my house for a while.  I think the mail carrier has passed by and my husband would know to duck if he saw me open the door with a large object in my hands so there shouldn't be any injuries.  But maybe that won't be necessary.  Maybe I will get the bobbin inserted properly.  Maybe I will even sew a straight line.  That's all I ask and it would be so nice.