The Joys (et al.) of Learning

14 days into this bootcamp, I’ve noticed a pattern so far in my skill acquisition, particularly with Active(W)Rec(k)ord…

0. Feel fairly comfortable in any given moment with the skills I possess

  1. Introduce myself (or be forcibly introduced) to a new concept
  2. Dip my toes into the basics of using said concept, via simple commands and methods, while having minimal idea of what I’m actually doing
  3. Encounter errors with new concepts and, due to the aforementioned ignorance of what I’m doing, have no idea of how to resolve them
  4. Randomly and blindly spew out lines of code
  5. Continue to run into same errors
  6. Become frustrated
  7. Mutter torrents of profanities from the overflowing boiling pot of my rage
  8. Fantasize about whipping my laptop through the window like a Japanese throwing star and watching it descend like a fireball before exploding in an atomic mushroom cloud onto Grand Ave as I cackle with cathartic glee (while miraculously avoiding fatalities, of course!)

9–25. Loop #4–8 about half a dozen times

26. Grow mildly guilty over, and disturbed by, my megalomanaical visions

27. Exhale and glance around nervously

28. Head up to floor #14, or the cafe counter, for my umpteenth latte of the day

29. Sit back down with a slightly clearer and calmer head

30. Continue to plod through

31. Eventually stumble upon success and temporarily halt the deluge of errors

32. Through repetition, learn how to execute commands from scratch, rather than copy and paste and slightly tweak snippets of code from, StackOverflow or that insufferable yet helpful Ruby site run by Spanish programmer and SEO master Jesus Castello

33. Gradually, achieve understanding of what’s happening

34. Nirvana… for like 5 seconds

35. Loop back to #0… ad infinitum

So basically, it looks like my life as a programmer, provided I manage avoid manslaughter charges for aerial laptop assault, will be an infinite loop of long periods of frustration, punctuated by flashes of comfort, and bursts of inspiration and understanding.

You know what? I’m fine with that. Because, so far at least, the breakthroughs outweigh the breakdowns.

Either way, beats flipping burgers!

P.S. Apologies in advance for the grumbled obscenities and exploding laptop(s)… and for my denigration of the noble flippers of patties, which bring joy (and cholesterol) to us all

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