Doing the To-Dos

It’s amazing how light one feels when everything is wiped off the to-do list, at least temporarily. Yesterday I finally published my new website with no problems — yeah! (You can check it out here: https://patbertram.com) I decided to stick with my current car insurance because of lower deductibles and accident forgiveness, so I paid that bill as well as several others. I cleaned out the file of old bills. I’m sure there were several other small chores done, too. What a great feeling!

I carried that feeling over into this day until I was scared half out of my mind by a loud screeching noise. It turns out my phone was screaming at me about a dangerous dust storm in the area. As if I didn’t know. All I had to do was look out the window. Or, if I didn’t look out the window, all I had to do was open the door, see all the blowing dust, and quickly shut the door on the outside world.

I hadn’t been able to locate the permissions for that alert app so I could turn off the notifications. If an alert goes off in the night, it would probably scare me into a heart attack. Luckily, I finally managed to turn off all notifications. If I ever feel the need, I can always turn them on again, but for now, it’s more of an annoyance than a lifesaver. When I go out, I check the weather anyway, otherwise, it doesn’t matter. Besides, I can’t do anything about the weather, war, riots, whatever, so it’s better if I slept through it.

Because of my finally finding that permission setting, I hunted once more for the photo editor permissions. I have no idea why the default setting was “no permissions” because with no permissions, the app wouldn’t work. I’d never been able to find the permissions before, and even though I didn’t find them today, I did something in the search for that setting that turned on the photo editor.

Now I just have to figure out how to turn off the “Find my phone” app. It keeps telling me . . . something. Maybe that I need to sign up for it. Apparently, I can’t turn off the notifications they keep sending me to sign up for the app unless I sign up for app, which makes no sense to me, but that’s a conundrum for a different day. (And I wondered why I was so hesitant to fiddle with my website!)

Speaking of conundrums: for some reason, WordPress held the comments of some long-time commenters for moderation. If this happened to you, or happens sometime in the future, please do not take it personally. It’s merely a blip in the program. I would never require moderation for those of you who come here frequently.

So, that’s my day. How is yours?

***

Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator

New Website!

I’ve been hesitating about publishing my new website. Yesterday I said I didn’t know why, but I do — it’s that so often things go wrong and I simply did not feel up to dealing with any crisis. For example, books that I get from other sources than Barnes and Noble will sometimes show up on my nook and sometimes not. So frustrating!

But putting off the inevitable doesn’t guarantee that the frustration level of publishing a new website will be any less than if I did it immediately, so today, I pushed the button.

Nothing happened. The computer didn’t blow up. The sun kept shining. The wind kept blowing. And the old website remained.

Luckily, all it took was time. Eventually, the new website showed up. It seems okay to me, though the real thing looks a lot different from the preview. The difference comes mostly in the size of the font and the photos, though there isn’t anything I can do about that — the template comes pre-sized.

Still, I am pleased, with both the way the site and that it is finished.

The best thing about the site is that it is now secured. My old site, since was an http address rather than an https address, came with a google warning that it was unsecured. It’s also mobile ready so that it fits well in a cell phone’s screen.

If you care to take a look, you can find the site at Home (patbertram.com). Feel free to let me know if you see any typos or anything that doesn’t look quite right.

***

“I am Bob, the Right Hand of God. As part of the galactic renewal program, God has accepted an offer from a development company on the planet Xerxes to turn Earth into a theme park. Not even God can stop progress, but to tell the truth, He’s glad of the change. He’s never been satisfied with Earth. For one thing, there are too many humans on it. He’s decided to eliminate anyone who isn’t nice, and because He’s God, He knows who you are; you can’t talk your way out of it as you humans normally do.”

Click here to buy Bob, The Right Hand of God

Hesitating

The demise of Adobe Flash Player made my old web builder defunct, so I’ve had to create a new website using a more current web builder. Although intimidating at first, the new web builder was actually easy and fun and intuitive. (I prefer intuitive programs because I don’t have to watch boring videos or read long articles of instruction. I can simply . . . do.)

Now, to the best of my knowledge, the new website is finished. I just have to click “publish” for it to go live, but I hesitate to take that final step. I don’t know why. It’s not as if the world as I know it will end. The old site will end, of course, with no way to get it back, but most of what was on there is posted in other places, so I can recover any information I inadvertently leave off the new site. And I can always redo the new site if I need to make changes.

But still, I hesitate.

Partly, I don’t want to have to go through the site once it’s published to make sure I did everything right. I’ve read through everything so many times that I’ve developed a blind spot for those words. Partly (even though this justification of my procrastination is something I just now thought of rather than a real reason for delaying), the longer I wait, the fresher those words will seem and so I’ll be able to read them as they are rather than as I wish them to be. And partly . . . who knows. Stubbornness, maybe, or contrariness. Although I like the new site better than the old one — it’s much more professional and easier for people to use — I’m still being forced to change, and I don’t like the feeling of being herded.

So I hesitate some more.

I’d considered pausing here and hitting the “publish” button so I could brag that I did it, but . . . well, I didn’t.

Maybe this weekend I’ll gather the courage to publish my new site. Or not. We’ll see.

***

“I am Bob, the Right Hand of God. As part of the galactic renewal program, God has accepted an offer from a development company on the planet Xerxes to turn Earth into a theme park. Not even God can stop progress, but to tell the truth, He’s glad of the change. He’s never been satisfied with Earth. For one thing, there are too many humans on it. He’s decided to eliminate anyone who isn’t nice, and because He’s God, He knows who you are; you can’t talk your way out of it as you humans normally do.”

Click here to buy Bob, The Right Hand of God

Out With the Old

Sometimes getting to the truth even about something as simple as a web site builder is almost impossible. Not that a website builder is simple by any means, but compared to the big questions concerning life and death, it is simple because there is an answer if you can find someone who will tell the truth.

And therein lies the problem.

About two months ago, I got an email from by website provider saying that with the demise of the Adobe Flash Player, my website will no longer be active, and they are switching me to a new website builder. The original builder, although wieldy to work with, was actually pretty simple to understand. This one, I just stared at in total non-comprehension. I’m not an IT person by any means, but over the years, I’ve learned how to do a lot of things, but this one has me flummoxed because it is so different.

So I called the company, and the person who responded said I didn’t have to do anything, that the tools would do most of the work, and that an actual person would work on the site and get it going for me.

A week later, I got another email from the company, reminding me about the upcoming change, and that I had to take action. So again, I called the company, and the person who answered iterated what the first person had said, and added that an entire division had been added to take care of the conversion.

Well, today, I got another email telling me I have to switch my account over, and that experts are standing by in case I have questions, which is entirely different from their actually doing the work. So I called again, and apparently, those first two guys were wrong. I do have to set up the website myself.

Now, instead of two months to figure out what the heck I’m doing, I have less than two weeks during Christmas season to update the site. Eek.

This guy said that the old website wouldn’t simply disappear at the end of the month, and since I don’t have anything that used the Adobe Flash player, I should be okay, but “should” isn’t much of a guarantee. He also said I have a very old web builder, that it was old when he started working there six years ago (as if six years is ancient history, which in tech terms, I suppose it is.)

The good news is that I will have many more pages at my disposal, the site will be mobile friendly, and it will follow Google’s security guidelines.

Once I get over my snit about being strung along for so many weeks, it might be fun to play around with a new site. At least I hope so.

Now I just have to figure out what pages I want, what I need to put on those pages, what I want to highlight on the front page, and how best to showcase my books.

Wish me luck. Or better yet, offer suggestions of what you like to see in a website!

***

Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator