Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Thrown Under the School Bus

Here is a conversation I had with my mother when I was a small child balking at going to school:

Me: "I don't want to go to school"
My Mom: "Honey, it's against the law for you to not go to school. If you stayed home, the police would put me in jail."
Me: "Okay, I'll go. But I'll have tears in my eyes."

Contrast that with a conversation I had with my son this morning:

My Son:"I'm not going to school!"
Me: "Honey, it's against the law not to go to school. Do you want the police to put me in jail?"
My Son: "How long would you be?"

This kid's tough as nails! Consider me thrown under the school bus.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Bad Design Friday

Part of understanding good design is understanding bad design. Design is part of our everyday life, and it drives me nuts when things do not function as they should. My soul sings when things are designed with thought and work efficiently.

Today I consider the sign. To me, the purpose of a sign's design is to clarify when things are not blatantly clear. A well placed, well designed sign should efficiently communicate, instruct, and dispel confusion. A lack of signs in a common sense location is frustrating (ex: detour signs that do not efficiently guide you through the detour resulting in getting lost). On the
flip side, I find it incredibly annoying when there are so many signs trying to communicate an idea, it leads to confusion and delay (as Sir Topham Hat would say). To me, this suggests that the best possible or most efficient solution has not been found for the problem.

So, here's my example of a poorly designed sign. I found it in an airport on one of my recent travels. I actually found it pretty amusing (it was also 11:30 pm after a 6 hour day of flying so I was easily amused).

Operating in an airport must have something to do with the ambiguous closing time, but what's the point of posting your hours of operation, if you're not going to post your hours? Why even commit to an opening time at all? Why not just say: "Daily From: Open to Close"?

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Some Things Just Aren't Meant To Be...

I intended for the week before school starts to be a nice, relaxing week sprinkled with a few fun outings to give summer break one final hurrah. Instead, in the first 3 days:
  • I managed to loose my son's most beloved blanket and stuffed animal at church. The blanket would be irreplaceable, and I learned through some online research that my son's stuffed animal has become a collector's item sold for around $50... making it irreplaceable as well. Both items were thankfully found 3 days later.
  • My son's lingering cough, which has been interrupting his sleep (and mine) for far too long, developed into a sinus infection- requiring a trip to the doctor and the pharmacy.
Mix that in with a church meeting, a haircut and a routine doctor's appointment for me, my son's school's orientation, and no time to clean the clutter left in our wake, and the week started off feeling anything but relaxing. Such is life, I suppose.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Is This News?

This morning I read a headline from a local news source that stated, "Weeks After Having a Baby Can Be Full of Challenges". Is this really considered news?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Mean What You Say

Here is a recent conversation my son and I had while perusing the Lego aisle of a store. I'm learning that I've got to be prepared to defend my position- even if I think it supports his.

My Son
: "Mom, isn't Lego Set A better than Lego Set B?"
Me: "They're both pretty cool."
My Son: "Yea, but isn't Lego Set A better than Lego Set B?"
Me: "Yea."
My Son: "Why?"
Me: "Well.... Lego Set A has X,Y,and Z"
My Son: "Yea, but Lego Set B has this, that, and the other."
Me: [Foiled again]

Monday, August 2, 2010

Combating Super Woman Pressure

"We cannot do everything, all the time, all at once. We can, though the years, do many things, at different times, one at a time. It is important to see choices as opportunities, not as frustrations."

- Jaroldeen Edwards