Saturday, April 7, 2018

Just Read the Directions

DSC 3283
I can do this...
The following is some advice that all should follow to make lives easier.

   Read the directions first.

   Follow the directions.

Now this is the hard part.  No matter how many times one has assembled an IKEA product, no one is an expert.  No one can or should open an IKEA box, look at the parts, screws, and that one lonely Allen wrench…and then say, heck, I can do thisThen toss the directions (unread) aside, to proceed.

   After screwing up the whole process, take the object apart and read the directions this time.  Hopefully, your failure gone unobserved and no one is giggling. Hopefully, no screws are missing. If they have, you are in big trouble, especially if the Allen wrench is gone. Oh, man, this is bad.

Here is another bit of advice:

source
 Set the timer.
  
It does not matter what is being done.  If the directions say: Set the timer for 15 minutes to allow the glue to set.



This is also a hard part, as most assume that surely it was meant to say 45 minutes.  After all you are the adult here. When maybe an hour has passed and the project is finally checked, no profanity should be allowed.  It is your own damn fault.  Call the 1-800 number to see what can be done to un-stick the glue.

      Set the timer.

    If the cake directions say 35 minutes at 350°, then do it.  Do it.  Taking a burnt dry cake, covered with thick icing, to a family function will not disguise this error. This also applies to any cooked project, be it jello or a roast.

    Set the timer or else.   

I   When adding water to the pool, set the timer.  When 45 minutes should do it, and then forgetfully, let it go for an hour and a half, water will flow out onto the concrete, etc.  This, too, cannot be disguised. This also applies to any water-related activity. Water is unforgiving.

     Set the blasted timer.  
I
I   If a soccer-playing child is supposed to be picked up at 4 pm, and 5 pm rolls around, that child will catch a ride with some other parent. Most likely this parent didn't like you in the first place. This parent and other parents will think that the aforementioned parent is inept. Embarrassment is inevitable.  The child will also tell his other parent. Nothing ever remains secret.

   Read the directions and then make a decision to pay someone to do something for you.  

     Write down important stuff with your hand, paper, and pen.

    Write important stuff on an honest-to-God paper calendar. Smart phones are not always that smart and tend to need re-charging at bad moments. Pin info on the bulletin board, tape on the refrigerator, or write on a whiteboard.

OH, this list could go on and on.  It is suggested that one add to this list on their own, and then

Follow the directions.

P.S. This is a re-post from 2015. It is still applicable, one of those timeless posts.

40 comments:

  1. I so dread trips to IKEA... Thankfully for me, it's been a while.

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    1. Going to IKEA is like going to an amusement park for us. No pressure shopping, watching young marrieds and small families is fun. We like the cafe. But the crush of people is overwhelming.

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    2. There's talk of new deck furniture...

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  2. Not only do I read the instructions but if it is for an electronic item I keep them. And haven't regretted it.

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    1. We do as well. My husband has to be reminded about the directions.

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  3. I have a daughter who tosses instruction books aside and just pushes buttons until everything works when it comes to electronic equipment. Ikea furniture gets delivered, stacked in the spare room and left until she finally decides to tackle it. Sometimes for years, which makes me wonder why she bought the stuff...
    I read the instructions, lay out all the little bags of screws and bits to make sure they are all there, then phone my brother who comes and puts it all together. I used to do it, but my shoulders can't handle it anymore.

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    1. Preparing and then calling your brother--good choices!

      Impulse buying is never a good thing.

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  4. I am currently looking for a coffee table but it seems they are all self assembly which stops me making a purchase. I wouldn't even be able to understand the instructions. Even with a stop watch I wouldn't be able to take on the task of building from scratch.

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  5. I read the instructions, or at least follow the pictures in them lol always on time at my sea, so at least I got that one. And yep, pay someone who knows how to do it, usually faster and no screw ups.

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    1. You are exceptional in this way and others. Having pictures as the directions is brilliant.

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  6. I only buy glasses and blankets at IKEA. I once considered getting a lamp, but thought about the inevitable conclusion and went to Home Goods instead.

    I have started to hand over jobs that I once did easily to younger people who, for a reasonable price, will get it done quicker and cause me no aggravation. The white flag has been risen.

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    1. Employing young people is a great boost to the economy.

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  7. If it has to be assembled I won't buy it...hubs in inept at assembly and I have NO patience. I have a fail proof system for remembering things..unfortunately, it failed.

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    1. My husband and yours should meet for coffee.

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  8. I don't go there, I have the mail man deliver ours, so Laura can assemble. She used to wait for me to read the directions, but no more.

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    1. Laura is a genius and loves you very much.

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  9. That made me chuckle.
    I heard people can get to the point of divorce over IKEA.
    I set the timer when making pancakes. Not screwing them up!

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    1. Emotions do run high at IKEA. My husband always has an anxiety attack there.

      Burning pancakes may get to the point of divorce? No, not you.

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  10. Hopefully the IKEA directions have pictures. Pictures are helpful.

    I started setting a timer for when I boil eggs. Too many times I would forget I had eggs on the stove. That timer has saved my butt so many times...

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  11. on a more minor note, following the directions also applies to Lego build sets.

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    1. Oh yes. Yes. And make sure all the pieces are together, in one pile.

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  12. I built a flatpack starship USS Enterprise NCC 1701, believe me I was never so bewildered in all my life. Leads, wires, painting and finally audio with leds. It pays to set the timer, QED

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    1. Glutton for punishment, and then rewards. Kinda like childbirth. Post a photo on your site?

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  13. HA! Yeah, it is a "timeless" post.

    I'm a direction-reader. (And manual reader.) My husband, like most men, I suspect, is not. He calls them "destructions," and occasionally, he may take a peek at them after he's finished his project... (The show-off!)

    And timers? I use them every day. When our kids were little, setting a timer was a no-argument way to let them know it was time for them to do something, whether they wanted to or not. :)

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    1. You are a woman after my own heart. Timers are versatile little guys. I used them in my classroom a lot.

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  14. Dear Susan, it is always timely for a post like this!!!! And as you pointed out with your examples, it applies to all sorts of aspects of our life. thank you. Peace.

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    1. Everyone has to deal with assembling something. It is a good thing to sit back and hold those directions right in your face.

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  15. OH this is SO TRUE! I'm so guilty of looking at pictures and thinking, "Oh, I can do this!" and not reading the instructions. As for writing stuff down, physically, with pen and paper on a REAL calendar, I'm SO THERE! I still buy a wall calendar every year, hang it in the kitchen, and write everything on it. I carry a paper calendar book in my bag and write everything down in it. #1 I just love paper! #2 my phone always, always, always fails to set off the reminder for things like, "Pay your student loan payment today" or "Dinner with so-in-so at seven". It's just smart to have a hard copy! Have a wonderful day!

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    1. A woman after my own heart! Calendar is by the phone in the DR/kitchen.

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  16. Oh my goodness. I NEVER read the instructions first. On a rare occasion, I stumble through it and get the job done. Most of the time, I have to backtrack. I'm learning though and do a little more research of the step by step before I delve in. I ordered 8 chairs from Overstock one year. Each came unassembled and in a million pieces. The first chair took me 2-3 days to assemble (took breaks of course). The last chair took me 15 minutes.

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    1. Trial and error, in this case, means to read directions first. Well learned!

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  17. Ooh, I've never built an IKEA thing that involved glue... Funny, I like reading the directions, so I have no problem there. Sometimes I try to do two steps at once though, and that never really works...

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    1. You are probably the first one who said she/he reads the directions!

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  18. Ha! I think most of us have 'Been there. Done that.'
    Great post, Susan. Enjoy your weekend.

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    1. So many of us have walked in these steps.

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  19. Following instructions can be so important too!

    All the best Jan

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    1. Here I always admonished students to read directions all the time, only to find that my husband was king of not reading them.

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  20. I might add read the ENTIRE recipe to your advice to set the timer. It's never fun to be halfway (or more) through it only to realize there's some obscure ingredient you didn't know you needed.

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Go ahead...it won' t hurt...I'd love to hear what you think!