Have you ever begun a project with the best of intentions, only to find that after much labor (and sometimes much cursing) it’s just not going the direction you want it to go in and you have to abandon it in favor of a completely different approach? We all have. It’s irritating and frustrating, but that’s just the way it goes.
This is not a new phenomena. As an example, I give you this completely unretouched illustration of the joining of the first transcontinental railroad in 1869.
Wow. All of that work by two railroads, one heading east, the other west, and when they get to the final stage — no one had paid ANY attention to the track alignment!
Can you imagine?
Okay, just kidding there – though to be fair, the builders had to do a lot of improvisation to make that first transcontinental railroad a reality.
On to something else. I have a dear friend, Marie Bostwick, who also happens to be a New York Times bestselling author. (www.mariebostwick.com) Marie’s business is writing novels. Here’s the cover of her latest work. It’s set in Texas (where it is a state law that you have to call 811 if you are going to be digging to a depth of 16 inches or greater) but *spoiler alert* 811 isn’t part of the substantial plot line. (No, I’m not telling you, you’ll have to read it for yourself!!!)
Marie and I actually had the same agent years ago, but that’s another story. Anyway, sometimes in writing, Marie will find herself – despite her best efforts and intentions – going down a rabbit hole that just isn’t working for her characters. The only solution is to dump it and hope to salvage something for use in another approach. There is a phrase used by authors for this drop and burn approach, but I won’t go into it here. The point is, Marie has to make a fresh start on what she’s doing.
Which is what you will also have to do if you don’t begin a dig within 14 days of having underground utilities marked. Like eggs and milk, line markings have an expiration date. If you don’t get started on your dig, or if you reverse course and decide to do something different, you’ll need to call 811 again to get those lines remarked. Of course, the additional call to 811 and the remarking are going to cost you what they did the first time you called – absolutely nothing!!!
Until next week, safe digging!