Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Instructions Have No Feelings

For some reason I have a mental block when it comes to some things. Like remembering why I went downstairs, following directions, trying to understand everything the doctor is saying to me, and listening to someone explain anything technical to me.

Directions are a problem. Please don't give me directions. Directions are for the weak at heart. I don't care if they are directions to your house, how to do something on the computer, or directions to the refrigerator. Please, spare me.

I don't have time for instructions either. Just put it together or fix it for me, o.k? I don't want to learn. You can learn and have fun with all that knowledge. Instructions are confusing and boring and take time. I just want to know how without having to learn how.

So if you ever write instructions for me, please do it something like this:

1. Look, Nan. I know you don't want to read how to do this. I know you'd rather read a good book or go blog or something. So ignore me. Instructions have no feelings so you can't hurt me.

2. Walk over to your husband or children and say "Helpppppp!!! me!"

3. Don't get offended when hubby or children laugh at how helpless you are and your children say "Really, mom? You seriously can't figure out how to do this?"

4. Do not wait for your husband or male children to finish what they're doing before they help you. Insist that they drop everything and help you NOW. This is always good for some marital tension and childhood frustration. Everyone needs the opportunity to learn patience now and then. This will give lots of opportunity for them to exercise it.

5. While they're helping you, insist that they do NOT stop and read the directions. Tell them directions are worthless and they should be able to figure it out on their own. They are men, after all. Men never bother with directions. Just ask your husband.

6. After they've insisted on reading the instructions ask them if they're finished. Thirty seconds is long enough for anyone to read a 1,000 page document.

7. Don't let them explain how to do it. You don't want to learn how to do it. Their job is to do it
for you. Tell them that. We all need to be good at something, and they can be good at reading instructions.

8. Let your eyes glaze over and start to close if they start talking technical and try to explain things to you. Look as if you're in pain. Whine if you need to.

9. Remind them again that you don't want to know how it works, why it works, or what to do to make it work.
You just want it to work. Period. Just work and do the job you've asked it to do. Is that to much to ask?

10. If they follow the instructions and they STILL can't figure things out, don't forget to say "I told you so!"

Signed, The Instructions


  1. HAHAHAHA!!! So true, just ask my guys!!

  2. Maybe we are really twins separated at birth! I HATE written directions, especially if there are no pictures and diagrams. I try to write down everything my doctor says, but still go home and don't know if I am sick or well. Thanks for the laugh!


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