You know it's amazing. Everyone I know will tell you, oh lovely reader, that I am a perfectionist. I commit myself to more projects than I feasibly should, and I manage to complete them all at the result of my sanity. (Not to mention the sanity of my girlfriend, thanks for putting up with me Pri!) However I have never quite experienced my amazing ability to throw all things aside to fix a small, minute, remarkably unrecognizable detail, like I have when building this website.
It doesn't matter what I'm working on, it will take far too long. I have rewritten my "About" page more times than I care to say, I spent literally 3 hours perfecting my photos page only to discover my friend Danny had done it better, and I learned his amazing ways and promptly threw mine out. I have spent countless hours perfecting every line, every word, every picture, every single place that a picture, a paragraph, and a column didn't match up.
After all that, you'd think I'd learn to listen to words of reason, "Ned, the average person, and even the average above-average person won't notice." You'd think, but I don't. Instead here I am. Sitting at my computer at 1:56AM (though by the time I'm done perfecting this blog post, it'll be 4am, most likely) typing a blog post about nothing important. Except that I wanted to. That's enough, right?
You see, I don't understand when to quit! It doesn't make sense to me, if something can be improved, why not do it? In the words of Mark Bedell, the guy who mentored me through high school in the art of Staged Combat, "99% of the audience won't care about fight mistakes. They'll happily sit, gasp, and thoroughly enjoy everything you do. We don't choreograph for those people. We choreograph for the 1% of the audience who knows how to really fight. Who knows what you're doing and what the correct responses would be. We choreograph for them, because they'll appreciate that you spent the extra time, and the other 99% will blissfully not know the difference." I guess that's my philosophy on everything in life. From fight direction, to creating a character, to writing a paper, to...well...web design, I guess.
While you may, or may not agree with the philosophy, I really enjoy what it does to final products. I've seen plays where the director obviously works with actors for the 1% of the audience who truly understand acting technique. I've seen movies where the director plays to the 1% who understand how movie editing and shot construction can play with a human's emotions. The trap is, that these days humans seem to value raw talent more than cultivated talent. Game shows (being a 2 reality game show graduate, I feel like I can rip on them) inspire people to be discovered and make it big instantly. Big exposure early and often. These people once they've made it, I've found often treat methodically trained people as snobby. I've seen theatre critiqued as being "too pompous." Now I've seen pompous theatre, and it annoys me as much as the next guy, but these shows were just stunning, they simply were directed to a movement. Every single option was exactly what the director wanted and in the way the director wanted it.
Maybe that makes me pompous for appreciating the director, but if musicians spent that kind of energy on their output? We'd have a lot less one hit wonders, and a lot more people like Dave Grohl, or the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Nickelback could finally retire into the obscurity of self-indulgent attempts at deep music by playing on emotions from which they came. Angie Aparo could finally be appreciated for the artist that he is, and people covering his music would stop making millions.
Sometimes, being anal-retentive has its benefits. Wait. Does anal retentive have a hyphen? Damn, that looks wrong.
Photo by Danny Bristoll
(fac·to·tum | \ fak-ˈtō-təm) noun - a person having many diverse activities or responsibilities
I find myself hilarious, and I use this blog to stroke my own ego. Thanks for indulging me.