Capturing recurring imperfection with permanence
I bought two notebooks today. One silver, one black and red. Their purpose is dualistic. Firstly, they'll be recording my thoughts in an easy to retrieve way while away from the keyboard (something loose-paper blocks have consistently failed).
It's especially for when I'm reading. I always have tons of things to write down when I'm reading. Not necessarily — no, seldomely — centered around the reading topic. It's peripheral writing.
Like right now, reading Agile Software Development, I keep getting flooded with ideas for work product management and production software. Merging Wikis, weblogs, revision control, scheduling, and word processors. That kind of thing.
I read a paragraph, spend a moment looking idly, then jot down a few more software thoughts. I feel like one of those big machines marked with f(x) in primary school mathematics text books. In goes X, out comes Y. I've yet to deduce my exact expression.
Anyway, back to the second purpose.
Secondly, the notebooks will teach me to accept chaos and permanence. Once I commit a sentence to the notebook, it's there to stay. Until my black and red notebook is full and archived away, page three will be keeping "Chance favors the prepared mind" on its first line.
I can't pull out the page (well, I can, but that makes for an ugly notebook in no time) to make a small ball meant for a trashcan hoop. I'll have to accept the recurring imperfection of first draft thougts. Scary.
But why two notebooks? I'm not ready to handle the overwhelming chaos and mixed permanence of a single notebook. Not yet. A single notebook would be blending fragments of feeble poetry and Loud Thoughts in the making with structured(?) ideas on software.
I know I can't handle that clash.
So for now, silver will be software, red and black will be feeble poetry and loud thinking. And so it shall be for two times eighty pages.