Saturday, May 14, 2011

Well Enough: Alone or Not?

What is the well enough we can't seem to let alone?  How many times have you seen or heard the question raised or delivered in some diatribe or performance review?

You have heard the description levied against you both in the active sense and its breach; you have thus been seen as tinkering with a thing long past its use-by date and someone who abuses protocol by not doing anything even though something is called for.  But in defense of those charges or rather in explanation of them, you believe that most individuals are tinkerers, fidgeters, fussers, wanting another shot at the improbable attainment of perfection, optimistic really that one can always do better.

You have yet to come to complete terms with doing better; the process of revision and perhaps even restructuring could possibly lead to a better effort.  This doesn't mean you in large measure coast at, say, eighty-percent level; you feel pretty comfortable that your efforts are at high quality.  Some of "well enough" goes back to yesterday's blog posting as it had to do with time and priority.  You would rather do fewer things well than more things at, say, seventy-five percent level.  

Indeed, you find your not being able to leave well enough alone responsible for it taking you to write such things as letters to the damn Bank of America, attempting to find out why they see fit to charge you $19.80 some months after you cancelled a checking account there, then becoming involved in an additional exchange in which they are on the cusp, or so they threaten, of reporting you to a financial reporting agency.  By your account, you have already invested twenty-five dollars worth of time on the matter, meaning if you knew how to pay the $19.80 and what it was for, you could have left well enough alone and remained free of contact with the damn Bank of America by paying the $19.80.  A phone call to the customer service provoked a long series of push-button responses that led to you leaving a message that provoked a return call that resulted in a shouting match that began after being told this conversation might be recorded for quality control purposes, to which you asked if you could record the conversation for the Small Claims Court.  You have learned that it is not easy to deal with customer service applications based in India.

India does have its problems but you happen to believe that India and Brazil, rather than China, are strong representations of the future.  They are for the moment well enough and although you have some interesting ties to India, particularly some of its culinary dishes, and are equally fond of a Brazilian restaurant on 45th Street in Manhattan, you are willing to ascribe a state of wellness enough to India and Brazil and leave them.

The true answer to all this, in your best understanding of William Hazlett's approach to the essay, is the fact of you becoming a contrarian, which is not necessarily crankiness although it reserves the right to be cranky when the occasion warrants.

Most days, you are content to let well enough alone, as well allowing sleeping dogs the opportunity to remain asleep, to defer the turning of most stones until later, and to avoid the necessity to mind much less pay any attention at all to your p's and q's.  The days of movable type being fond relics, you do not think you have any p's and q's; you are concerned with persons and things that matter and can scarcely find the time to stay current with them, and you are not--repeat, not--willing to let them alone.

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