The task appeared simple. Drill 12 holes. Screw in hangers. Slide blinds into place. Close the flaps that held the blinds. The end. Nothing happened as planned. The obstacle was the 12 holes. For reasons that escape me, I chose 1 ½ inch screws. Given that I was screwing into concrete, the project called for a masonry drill of the appropriate size and a plastic plug.
Reality bit on the first attempt at drilling. With my sweat dripping on the floor, I knew the hole was never going to be as deep as I needed it. A quick review let me rationalize that 1 inch would work. After hitting the shower, a trip to the hardware store brought the needed result, 12 screws and plugs. As I tapped the plug into place, I realized that the hole was still not deep enough. Using a small drill bit, I attempted to drill deeper. With sweat dripping again, I concluded that the hardened concrete was tougher than my drill bits.
Another shower and trip to the store resulted in ¾ inch screws and plugs. What should have been blindly obvious was now clear. These screws would do the job. The effort to drill this hole while tough was achievable. The job that I thought would take me thirty minutes had now consumed the better part of five hours and I had 1 hole to show for it.
Sometimes the blindly obvious isn’t. Today I missed the conversation I would have had with John, Rich, Howard, Gave, or Jim. They would have questioned the initial assumption. We may have not got it right, however I know we would have never gone to three attempts! Friends and community help. An old observation still applies. “I say this as bluntly as I can to wake you up to the stupidity of what you’re doing. Is it possible that there isn’t one levelheaded person among you who can make fair decisions when disagreements and disputes come up? I don’t believe it.” (1 Corinthians 6.5)
Yesterday’s pattern does not need to be today’s.