I spent the day yesterday in this nice bookstore. I was plying the Dark Art most of the day, though I did buy some peaches from a local orchard and chat with a local masseuse about her need for a web site.
The bookstore is one of my clients, and I mind it for the proprietor when she’s on the road. She’s a one-man band, so it’s good for her to have someone like me available. It’s great for me that I can work anywhere there’s internet access.
When she came in, we had a good conversation on ways to follow up on the contacts she collected from her conference, e-mail marketing, and point of sale software.
That stuff is very expensive. I had no idea.
I got one of the new-client reports done, communicated with several other clients, and had an email from the Computer Guy about my own web site, which he is building for me. He was stuck.
Apparently, my collection of images, which I delivered along with a request that he avoid symmetry and a few paragraphs on the impression I wanted the site to give, wasn’t enough for him to come up with a visual plan for the site. He asked me to go around and look at other content provider’s websites and tell him which ones I liked. This I was able to do. It was easy for me to determine, within seconds really, whether I liked them or not, and I could usually articulate what I liked about them. However, I question whether it is going to be useful information or not. The only thing I noticed their having in common (apart from asymmetry) was a preponderance of vague leafy things or tentacles encroaching upon the horizontal blocks from an upper corner.
It began to feel like some sort of psychological test. Yes, I like the minimalist pink and black one with the branch coming from the top corner. And I like the soft ivory one with ironic pencils and the strange gray tendrils swirling out of the corner. And the black one with brilliant smears of color and the arabesques coming from the corner. And the steel-blue one with the DNA spirals reaching out from the corner. And the bright purple one with the octopus attacking from the corner.
Still, once I looked at them all, it did seem as though mysterious things writhing out from the corner was what they all had in common.
Just in case you haven’t memorized my recent posts, I offer you the images I sent to the Computer Guy. Maybe he can arrange for these things to writhe out from the corner.
Upon arriving at home, I found that my copy of Rosetta Stone French had arrived.
I am to review this, and of course I’ll have to do quite a bit of it before I can give it a fair review. At the very least. I will have to do enough to have run into some new information so I can say whether or not it works.
So I jumped right in and did the first lesson yesterday and the second one this morning. There are 48 altogether. It takes about half an hour to do a lesson, and it is enjoyable. It does get a little slow if you already know it all, but we know that I have the attention span of a gnat anyway.
Here’s how it works: you sit at the computer with a headset on and read things, listen to things, click on pictures that match the things you read or hear, and repeat things.
Actually, by the second lesson, you’re answering “oui” or “non.” Presumably we will build onto this, and soon I will be chatting away with the computer about Descartes.
When I said “sandwich” with a “sh” sound rather than “ch” sound, which is how I’ve always said that word in French, the computer made a little sad noise at me, and also when I typed in “fille” rather than “une fille,” but when you are correct it makes a little harp sound.
The pictures are very nice. You can imagine happy little stories going on behind the photograph of seven middle-aged people simultaneously lifting coffee cups or three women sporting about in the park. They all seem to be having fun, and the voices informing you that the men eat rice or the horses do not swim or whatever it might be are very happy about it, too.
So far I haven’t encountered anything that was actually new to me, but I can say “Les femmes boivent” with complete confidence, where yesterday I would have had to say, “Les femmes…” and then pause for a long time to try to remember how to conjugate the word for “drink,” so that’s progress right there.
My third interview for that job is set up, or nearly so. At the moment, it seems as though I may be able to do it here in town rather than driving up to the next county, and that would be good. Client #2 says he is almost completely comfortable with my posting his blog every other week and foresees going to a weekly posting. Client #4 is almost through the purgatory of trying to get her domain transferred, and I’ll tell you for free that without me it wouldn’t have happened at all.
In the course of working for Client #6 yesterday, I came upon this very cool site: Saints Preserved. I immediately thought of some birthdays that are coming up, but there is also lots of interesting information. Much of it is about saints, but there is also what Einstein said about bees, and Celtic music, and stuff about passenger pigeons, and really I was quite fascinated.
Today is Wednesday, but I have no marathon this afternoon, as there is a summer break. Just one class. So I think I should be able to get to the gym and get in plenty of hours for my big client, and do my GTD processing and catch up on any things that need doing for my smaller clients, and then relax in the evening. That’s my plan.