makeshift things, things that are
to you . can
calculate what effect this must have on Puttering Around
her spirit ?
If the photograph fades out , What
is , perhaps , the last puttering !
— OCR cross-column misread (and some opportunistic deletions therefrom), from
“Puttering Around,” in Bulletin of Photography No. 588 (November 13, 1918) : 464
in full —
What a lot of time a fellow wastes just puttering around! There is a type of business man, and some of them are photographers, who are always puttering around when there is no direct demand upon them for a specific service. When there are no customers in for attention, when no specific duty definitely calls, they fall to puttering.
They seem to have no idea of the value of an hour of time when no work is really waiting, and they think that as long as they are doing something, they are making their time count. They do not realize that one may keep doing something and yet not make the time count. One may keep busy at puttering and never get anything worth while accomplished.
A puttering photographer fools away with repairing a broken graduate or trying to mend a broken glass in a show-case. Putterers are always doing makeshift things, things that are not really worth doing and that if they were worth doing might be done by a cheap boy while the boss spent his time in work more worth while.
The amount of time a photographer may easily spend in puttering over some insignificant thing might be put to use in developing business plans, or getting up displays or writing advertising, and thus bring in returns that would pay many times over for a new graduate or a new show-case glass.
Some men seem to be natural born putterers. They would rather putter than work, and the habit grows upon them until they end by being the proprietors of puttering little shops instead of regular grown-up studios.
A young man should avoid developing the puttering habit. It is fatal to growth. An old man may be excusable for a habit he developed when young, but a young man is not excusable for developing it.
This is not a day of putterers. It is day of doers, of men who see what thing worth while needs to be done and who goes straight to it, allowing no petty tendencies to draw them aside.