So I was rootling through a deep bag, feeling around for a pen.

It’s only possible to do this for a few minutes.

Moving a hand around blindly like a Magimix paddle amongst papers, tissues, notebooks, to-do lists, phone cases and their friends pretty much closes down most other functions.

Mary Poppins plays a part in Penny Hunt's blog
“There it is!” said Mary Poppins

The conversation moves on. And frankly what ever you were saying will be changed and subverted in the general impossibility of taking seriously anyone who has actively trapped part of their body in a large bag, and then started talking into it.

So a voice at the next table said

Isn’t a cluttered desk a sign of a cluttered mindDoes that include bags? Ho ho

But you know the answer to that as well as we did, which is Einstein’s

..of what then is an empty desk a sign?

(Between you and me, this particular café does like to serve coffee at the slightly bitter end of the spectrum, and I can’t help noticing that this does seem to get reflected in the patrons’ mood sometimes. Hot chocolate may be the answer)

So it was with a quite a squeal of triumph that a pen, and me, finally came up for air and rejoined the world.

But it wasn’t just a pen. A couple of pieces of paper – one with the very name we had been trying to remember – surfaced at the same time. The annoying rootling had accidently and miraculously helped solve our problem.

Chuffed? I should say so.

Out of mess and untidiness came help.  And suddenly lots of things became clearer.

The rootling (of which I am still slightly ashamed – it was so noisy) performed several functions.

We were sort of pausing, between the challenge we had set ourselves and finding an answer. It was a ‘don’t know yet’ pause.

We were keeping lots of half finished thoughts and topics open.

We were actively not completing, actively going off on a tangent for a time.

The technological version of this would something like keeping lots of windows open at the same time.

(On that note – do you find that aspect of the i-pad limiting? It always strikes me as a very binary way of being, not to be able to see many views at the same time, to leave some stimulus at the periphery of vision while a central piece of work is going on. I am going to research this. I suspect the cultural male bias in brilliant design land recruitment is working its way through to quite binary design approaches – design that is looking to provide an answer, efficiently, rather than leave lots of things to exist alongside each other en route)

And there was another echo of that ‘half way house’, adjusting aspect to working through things in everyday life this week. In this case, accepting change.

image02Tax discs are no longer issued in the UK (post Oct 1). Many of us have been hijacked by the unexpected feelings of loss. That space on the windscreen looks so strange, and guilty, and …something is not right.

I have drawn myself an ‘in-between disc’ to help me acclimatize. (I’m not a cold turkey fan)

So more vagueness , more mess, more half-way house when dealing with things is my thought this week.

Do email me if you would like an in-between-missing-your-tax-disc design too.

I’ve found my pen.

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