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Designing Elephants

I just came back from a special church website meeting called specifically to ask for design changes.  The committee said, “We want you to do this!”

I said, “I can do this, but if I do, you lose that.”

Silence.  Head scratching.  “Oh.  But we really like that.”

I nod my head.  “This and that are attached*.  If I remove the one, the other goes, too.”

More silence.  More head scratching.

“Okay,” they decide.  “No changes.”  For now.

Amoeba told me about Ambrose Bierce’s definition for elephant.  I am keeping it in mind to comfort me through the church website design.

ELEPHANT, n. a mouse designed by a committee


*They wanted me to remove links, but keep pages.  Okay.  But without the links, how does one get to the pages?   O_o

But really, they aren’t as silly as they sound. Because I don’t have any of the links activated (I have no content yet) they didn’t understand the function of the left sidebar.  I think they’re happy — for now.

If you haven’t seen the website yet and are curious, it is still under construction, but what there is of it is here:

Harris United Methodist Church


  1. It reminds me of ghostwriting for people (which I hate but do). What someone wants written is occasionally at odds with what works for the book/editor/purpose. And isn’t it fun being in the middle? LOL

    Good luck anyhow; the website’s looking great. It took a while but I’m pretty sure that’s just me (sigh).
    .-= Susan at Stony River´s last blog ..Skywatch Friday, Feeling Blue (at last!) =-.

      1. Susan — the great thing about being a volunteer, rather than being paid, is the ability to counter-attack. My planned response for any unreasonable requests would have been. “That’s not something I am able to do at this time. When would you like to have me transfer the templates and passwords over to you?” I have found that if I offer to abdicate a project to the loudest dissenter, he or she usually snaps to and becomes my biggest supporter. 😉

  2. I still very like it! I hope you get content and get it launched before you move! I wonder will they still have you take care of it when you’re gone? Or will someone else be able to take it over?
    .-= Melli´s last blog ..Girl Friends =-.

    1. Church Lady, the committee made up its mind today. Pastor likes what I’ve done and has approved my template designs. Bert, the guy that built Thom’s website (the church one won’t be that fancy) is already working on it, and I should have it in the next couple of days.

  3. Actually, Amoeba LLC’s Department of Pedantry tells me that Bierce can’t be blamed for the “elephant” definition. In fact, I couldn’t find precisely that expression anywhere on the Web. I did find:

    ELEPHANT, n. A mouse built to military specifications.


    ELEPHANT-SHREW, a mouse built by a committee


    CAMEL, a horse built by a committee.

    None of these definitions has been attributed (unless you count the ubiquitous Mr/Ms Anonymous).
    .-= the amoeba´s last blog ..11 September 2009 =-.

  4. I am so confused with this. What the hell does and elephant have to do with a web site? And since when is that the definition of elephant. What happened to this: 1. Either of two very large herbivorous mammals, Elephas maximus of south-central Asia or Loxodonta africana of Africa, having thick, almost hairless skin, a long, flexible, prehensile trunk, upper incisors forming long curved tusks of ivory, and, in the African species, large fan-shaped ears.
    2. Any of various extinct or living animals related to either of these two animals.

    I must be just on pluto all of the time cuz I don’t get this LOL
    .-= Thom´s last blog ..Are You a Natural Flirt?, Turtles AT The Zoo, Donald and Daisy and Ziploc Bags =-.

    1. Thom — the elephant has to do with the committee that is telling me what they want from the website. A dozen people with a dozen different ideas. Which is why they got an ELEPHANT when they we asked to create a MOUSE. It is called an analogy. Get an imagination. Pft.

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