a little and a lot

Friday, December 21, 2007

From Now On, [Your] Troubles Will Be Out of Sight

...if you read the instructions.

This is something I'm passionate about.  Reading the instructions.  I feel that I should give this a proper rant as the season of instruction manuals approaches.  

When you get a new gizmo whatchamacallit, do you...
a. Read the instructions manual
b. Toss the instructions and figure it out yourself
c. Toss the instructions and ask someone else to figure it out for you


A is the only appropriate option for me and for those of you who pick C, I am just not a big fan of that.  Unless you ask ME to figure it out for you, which means I get to read YOUR instructions manual, in which case: yay for me!

It's not that I necessarily love reading boring instructions, but I am a play-by-the-rules kind of girl.  That doesn't sound very wild or thrilling, but it's just who I am.  No matter what the new item is, I read the rules before I plug it in or power it up or try it out.  

First car: drove it home from the owner's house and then sat in my driveway and read the instructions manual in the driver's seat.

The same follows for any other item that comes with directions.  Cell phones, computers, mixers, coffee makers, assemble-your-own bookshelves, my dog (I read every greyhound owner's manual out there before I brought him home), plants...you get the picture.  (To take it one step further, I am only able to cook/bake by using the exact recipe and I can only play piano if I am reading music.  Ha!)

I am prone to immediate gratification, so this is an interesting element of my personality.  Because reading the instructions inevitably delays playing with your new toy.  Nonetheless, each Christmas morning year after year has found me sitting in front of my new gift patiently reading booklets of various sizes and shapes.  

Before you think this obsessive trait is too strange, consider the benefits:
  • You will always know EXACTLY EVERYTHING your new "thing" does.  (There is nothing worse to me than talking to someone else with a [noun] and they have never known that it [verb]s.  Ugh.)
  • You will be able to most efficiently use your new item without interruption.  (No more mid-call on your new cell phone & you can't hear the person you're talking to because you don't know how to turn up the volume... This, by the way, happened to me today because an instruction manual was not given to me with my office cell phone.)
  • You always know the power requirements for the gifts that you give.  Is your kid getting a remote control car?  You will know in advance what batteries it takes or how long to power it up before it works.  (My dad always powered up our toys before giving them to us on holidays--after all, it's incredibly anti-climactic to present that iPod with gusto and then your loved one has to plug it into the wall for two hours.)
I'm sure I could go on for hours in true Jesse-fashion, but I will just stop there.  

I'm also sure this reveals something very ridiculous and/or hilarious about me.  But I'm not sure what it is.  

The point is: be kind to yourself and those you love...read the rules!   

6 comments:

Blessed said...

Uh, oh. I think I am C. And, I guess I should have read all about my Mac and I would have known it's incredible iMovie powers, but instead I'd rather ask you. Is this post for people like me??? Do I drive you crazy?

Supabloggasuprememama said...

LOL! first of all, this entry is hilarious. when it comes to the toys this christmas, my answer is C and hand it to Jamin. Thanks Jamin. Also, Just saw the new label I got to the right: hilarious. shout out to the old school. Hope you guys had a great Christmas!

Chris and Kate Lareau said...

I do them all. B. Then A. Then C. My goal for this holiday was to take a good stab at reading the manual for my camera. I've done so. Now I'm ready for you to give it a read and tell me what to do. It's a BIG manual; it could provide you with hours of challenging entertainment!

Jessica Maceda said...

I'm a. all the way.......I even enjoy reading what's on the outside of boxes too, food, new electronics, etc.

Brooke said...

so a as well. i even read manuals on kids before we had one. ha.

TDavis said...

I'm A unless it's something totally foreign to me and then I'm C. I'm a visual learner so if someone else 'splains it to me while showing me how, I get it.


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