Jack Baty

Director of Unspecified Services

The care and feeding of my system

<p>It shouldn't take so much time to keep my stuff running smoothly.</p>

It's taped right there on the wall, Jack.

Yesterday, for some reason, the menu bar stopped showing when launching Emacs. Good grief. I had to add an explicit call to (menu-bar-mode) in my init.el. Why? Who knows. I'm sure I did something to cause it, but my commit logs don't point to anything obvious.

It's another one of those mysteries, I guess ¯_(ツ)_/¯.

Thing is, I'm weary of mystery. I want things to work all the time and require as little fuss as possible. My current situation requires a lot of care and feeding and I need to find a way out of it.

I'm not blaming Emacs, specifically, although Emacs is frequently the day's scapegoat. Yesterday I was testing the idea of moving my Daybook back to Tinderbox. I copied last year's file and cleaned out the existing entries. Then, when I'd add a weight log entry in the new file, the entry would disappear a few seconds later. That's fun. I figured out why it was happening, but it took me thirty minutes. How much of my life is wasted on these thirty-minute (or longer) interruptions while I fix or tweak something that didn't need fixing or tweaking yesterday?

Sure, much of this is self-imposed because I tweak. But I'm beginning to tire of having to babysit the things that should just be basic infrastructure. I've gotten myself into this mess, and it's my problem to fix, but how? Maybe it'll mean declaring config bankruptcy in Emacs. Maybe it'll mean dropping all my "fancy" tools and going with the simple, stable ones (are there such things?).

Reminder to self, from Thomas Paine: "The more simple anything is, the less liable it is to be disordered." Things are disordered right now.

I'm still noodling on it. It's all related to my grand Reduce & Simplify plans for this year. I just wanted to vent a little.