Learning, I've come to realise, occurs in stages. Whenever one starts working with new tools, for instance, there is that stage in which you're stretched until your functional knowledge and proficiency catch up to your skill need. Psychologists call this stage "conscious incompetence": a point at which you have at least recognised a deficit in your understanding or skill.
This week I have made some inroads to stemming my incompetence:
1. It is possible to hit a signpost on a footpath without ever mounting a curb.
2. Reverse parking outside the shops with a great big box on the back can be tricky.
3. You can't go into the shopping centre car park, because that creates a fiasco all its own.
4. The person behind you in the traffic, now waiting for you to sort it out, will most likely have somewhere else to be. They will not be amused.
5. The new van has a reversing camera, which is handy for trying to see behind you, but not for seeing beside you.
6. The picture generated by reversing camera has rubbish depth perception.
7. An automatic garage door will not open if a box attached to a reversing vehicle is actually leaning on it.
8. A brightly coloured figurine keyring will assist in finding your keys in the bottom of your handbag.
9. A figurine can inexplicably get jammed up in the door handle of the car when you're tying to get into the car.
10. Trying to free the figurine from certain death by door handle may result in accidentally pushing the lock/unlock button, also attached to the keys, a lot of times.
11. Pushing the lock/unlock button lots of times may upset the anti-theft device on the car.
12. This may set off the car alarm.
13. While you're driving the car.
14. When your car alarm goes off while you are driving, the noise sounds like it is coming from another car.
15. Looking up and down the street in case a car is being stolen will not help.
16. Driving down the street with the alarm going off may attract attention from your fellow road users.
Any day now, I expect I will move to conscious competence stage of learning.