marcel barang

The mill and the oven

In English on 24/05/2011 at 8:21 pm

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One can’t be in two places at once or, as the French have it, au four et au moulin. The last six days were spent away from this mill.
First, because I created an oven, I mean another blog, private for the time being.
That blog, also at excellent WordPress, will feature specifically Thai to English translations of short stories. The Rubric format offers enough space to divide a single entry into three columns, one for the Thai, one for the English, one for the translator’s comments on translation traps, tricks or shortcomings.
To make those three columns stay together when you’re using different character sizes for each can be a maddening exercise. Intense force-feeding in HTML (highly toxic maddening language) has allowed me to just cope within the WordPress format, if not yet on a web page of my own design. Alleluia.
Why this new blog? Because creating a web page on manager.co.th was getting nowhere. Instead, it was agreed the website will advertise for the blog, as of mid-June: a click will take you there.
This has a double advantage, I believe: I’ll manage that page myself, with efficient assistance from WordPress’s Happiness Engineers; and those red-shirt authors whose idea of democracy is to refuse to be published (even in translation) by manager.co.th, that yellow-shirt mouthpiece, may no longer object to feature on what is a strictly literary, hence apolitical, platform.
Second, because such hyperactivity leads to digital problems, scary and time-wasting. On Saturday, an early version of that blog-to-be got locked up: I could see it, I couldn’t enter it. It took me hours over the weekend to figure out what had happened and how to prevent a repetition. Also to tool up a new version of the same.
But then, three hours ago, I find that all files and folders in My Documents have gone missing – all but a misplaced Adobe folder! None of my current work, done on the Desktop itself, has disappeared. Neither have My Pictures. But then, I have no fewer than four sets of copies of My Documents in my other computers and data sticks to restore the missing items. The moral is, back up and then back up yet again.
Third, to relax some of my brain cells and tax others, I went gardening the weeds of Uthen Wongjanda’s short story – and believe me, weeds there are in it that should have been eradicated by erstwhile editor Suchart Sawatsi.
But then, fourth, it was also that time of the month. The menses of Gavroche had to be cauterised, every evening: indeed, Gavroche it is mostly that sapped my strength to the point of being averse to post. But it’s good for the French side of my brain.

Oh, by the way, this is what the blog will look like:

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