Monday, October 18, 2010

where’s #@%$ing manual when you need it?

On principle, I don’t read manuals. That drives a few people in my life crazy (namely Scott). I figure that I am smart enough to sort out stuff on my own. Plus it’s totally faster to dive right in, you with me? Plug it in, turn it on and start pressing buttons. Unpack it, get your screwdriver and start assembling. Get the water boiling, start cutting vegetables and toss in some olive oil and garlic.  I actually prefer it if the instructions are in Swedish or Japanese with a few diagrams sprinkled in for effect. That way I have reference point but I have no choice but to go it alone.

Turns out, sometimes you should read the manual.

Picture it – me, sitting at my sewing machine yesterday. Limited time to get my quilting done and there I am cursing at my poor Janome. Blargh! The thread tension isn’t right! WTF?? I started scrambling around, turning knobs, pulling levers and sewing practice sample upon sample trying to get my machine to produce nice even stitches. Every adjustment I made seem to make things worse. No good.

I finally gave up and went searching for the manual that I recalled came with this machine…over ten years ago.  Of course, it was nowhere to be found. That’s okay – that’s why we have the internet, right? Wrong-zo. My mad google-ninja skillz were unable to turn up the blessed manual – mainly because Janome is doing some sort of website overhaul that has made all of their manuals unavailable (not helpful!). I couldn’t even find an answer to my basic question about thread tension “trouble shooting for Janome 5124 décor excel II”. Long story short, I wasted a bunch of time looking for the manual and the one time I could have benefited from reading it I could not find a copy of it to save my life.

I got up from the table, went and folded some laundry and came back 15 minutes later. I stared at my machine, begging it to tell me how to get this thread tension thing sorted out, and then the sky opened up and a ray of light hit the stitch selector and I saw that with all my messing around with the settings I had moved it to some wacky stitch and that was the reason everything was screwed up. Once I got it back to straight stitches all was right with the world.

And I did it all without the manual. I doubt the manual would have helped anyway.

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