The one thing that is guaranteed to send me off into the deep end is a computer glitch. The most frustrating aspect of this is the fact that I rarely have any idea at all how I got into the trouble. In addition, even if the problem inexplicably resolves itself, I rarely have any idea at all how I got out of trouble. So I live with the terrible knowledge that somewhere down the road, it’s probably going to happen again.
So it was on Monday, when I tried to post my piece about sundogs and The Cloud Appreciation Society. I’ve been blogging for a couple of weeks now, so I was feeling confident, almost smug. (Here’s where I should tell you that my very first photo post took me three hours to finish. Three hours.) But I was getting a handle on this blogging thing. Yeah. This was going to be a piece of cake.
When I tried to load the photograph of the sundog, it was huge, covering my whole blog page, so that my sidebar completely disappeared. I was flummoxed, as the photo was about the same pixel size as all the other photos I had uploaded. So I went back, reduced its size further, and reloaded it. Still enormous. Still no sidebar. So, over and over and over again, I reduced the size of the sundog picture until it was only 48KB. Still gigantic. In the course of doing this, I accidentally deleted the written part of my post, including my links to The Cloud Appreciation Society and my pictures of clouds.
By now, I had been working on this for two hours. I was actually trembling with frustration, sweating profusely, and almost hyperventilating. It was about this time that Tom, my husband, came in. He was excited.
“Beth, you’ve got to come out and see this cloud. It’s settled right on top of the mountain like snow, and the little wisps of it are trailing down the sides, but the sky is pure blue above! It’s amazing!”
I wiped my perspiring hands on my jeans. “Umm, not right now, honey. I’m trying to make this post upload. You know… the one about The Cloud Appreciation Society.”
Tom stared at me. “Just come out for a second. This cloud is really something.”
“Not right now! I’ve got to finish this cloud post!” I felt irritated. Why doesn’t he leave me alone? Damn this stupid post. Stupid blog. Stupid sundog. Stupid cloud.
Tom was still staring at me. In a significant way. But, of course, I was too distracted to care about why. Dadgummit, I was going to finish this post about the beauty of sundogs and clouds if it killed me.
Tom didn’t say another word. He grabbed his camera and went back out.
I retyped the piece and redid the links to The Cloud Appreciation Society. And that’s when it happened. Yep, it was like in the movies. In the old movies, that is. You know, where the lead character has a sudden epiphany. Their eyes widen in amazement, their mouth falls open, and they hear, as though in a dream, the words that opened their eyes, that single revelatory phrase, over and over, echoing through their astonished mind. The Cloud Appreciation Society…Cloud appreciation…cloud appreciation…cloud appreciation…
Yep. Irony hit me upside my head with a sledgehammer. And, just like in the movies, I shook my head and smiled a rueful smile, as I faced the folly of my ways. Slipping on my shoes and grabbing my camera, I headed outside. Outside to look up. To look up at the wonder of the clouds. To “marvel at their ephemeral beauty.”
Footnote: Indeed, beauty is ephemeral. So I was too late to capture the cloud enshrouding the mountaintop at its best. But here’s what I did see once I came to my senses and went outside.