According to the dictionary, the definition of a workaround is: 

“A method for overcoming a problem or limitation in a program or system.”

We got to see a workaround in action when we attended the 2019 Garden Valley Fly-In and went into town for breakfast one morning. 

In your mind’s eye, picture a turn of the century western town where a wooden sidewalk connects all of the shops on Main Street.

Alas, the place where the sidewalk needed to go had a tree in the way. They felled the tree, leaving the stump, and built the sidewalk around it. Maybe not a “classic” workaround, but a workaround nonetheless.

[bctt tweet=”What is your most recent encounter with a workaround?” username=”@TuesWithLaurie”]

What is your most recent encounter with a workaround?


60 thoughts on “Workaround

  1. I southern France last winter, we saw a mural built around a tree to separate 2 restaurants and the tree itself was part of the mural, with the painting going round it. I’m sure that photo made it into my blogpost last year and Twitter and FB, as I thought it was pure genius!

  2. Hi Laurie,

    As a programmer, work arounds are a daily occurrence. When something doesn’t quite work as expected, then I look for a logically equivalent way of achieving the same outcome.

    Today I drove 3 hours to a meeting about regional water policy in Christchurch, and there was a lot of discussion of working around rules that were put in place with good intentions, but deliver many perverse outcomes.

  3. I workaround many things! It’s the story of my life. Here in Spain they workaround trees in sidewalks and even buildings, but they leave the tree there.

  4. Something has gone wonky with MailerLite, my email marketing service. Lately I’ve have to do a workaround to send a post. In the scheme of things, it’s a small thing, but annoying.

    You always surprise me with your posts, Laurie: clever and brief, they never drain my energy.

    • Marian — I’m not familiar with mailerLite (I use MailChimp), but the issue you mentioned would annoy me, too.

      I’m so glad you enjoy my posts. Concision is would I aim for every time, hoping that my photograph will do most of the talking 🙂

  5. Workarounds are so much a part of my daily life I don’t really notice them anymore. My years living and working with people with disabilities taught me there is a way around most obstacles.. In my artwork I don’t buy materials for specific projects, but work from what I have on hand. Workarounds are part of my creative process.

  6. We all do this every day … like when the toilet is leaking and you have to wait for the plumber to come and fix it before going for a hike in the mountains you’ve been planning for days. They are simply part of what we sign up for when we land here in earth school.

  7. In life it happens multiple times. Once it was a real fix when I was in college , Incharge of the Debating Society and about to conduct an All Pakistan Debate Competition to be followed by a song contest when suddenly the electricity supply was disconnected.No electricity no mic, no loud speakers…what next? The function was arranged in the open college ground,it was a bright sunny Winter day…I was also the Head of the organizing Team I had to think fast…wow..Allah sends his wisdom…I asked the driver of the college bus to bring the large 50 seater bus close to the stage.He did that, he trusted me …lucky me, we attached the wires of the public address system to the battery of the college bus and Lo the function began on time and went without a hitch…

  8. I like this. Mine is kind of lame, but when my ancient iPad gave up the ghost I didn’t have two screens for editing purposes. I’m using my phone to read the suggestions, but it’s not a permanent solution.

  9. I remember my first conscious workaround. I was making a drawing of Christmas with tree and packages and furniture in the room. Something seemed a little off on the perspective. The rocking chair looked like it was floating. So I drew a big present under it. 🙂

  10. As teachers we had to work around all the rules and demands and policies of administrators and policy makers to get any teaching done. Also had to work around never having enough supplies.

  11. I’ve been playing with the theme of Changemakers as Influenencers on FB. Social Entrepreneurs are, of course, a category of changemakers. They are the ultimate “workarounders” in the world of changemaking. They discover an issue or problem then use their entrepreneurship approaches to create a solution to the need and build a business around it. A well known example of SE, is the Sundance Institute. The problem was young talented storytellers and filmmakers couldn’t get through the Hollywood system. The work around Robert Redford created the Sundance Institute in Colorado to foster the talents of these storytellers, have annual festivals where winners could achieve necessary visibility, and created funding streams to bring their work to the broader public. There are thousands of examples, try 4Oceans making a business to clear plastics from our oceans by selling bracelets made of recycled plastics. Isn’t ingenuity wonderful.
    Love your observations and metaphors Laurie!!

  12. This morning I went to the front yard to plant a shrub next to my porch, but it was way too wet. So I walked around to the back yard, picked up a saw and went to work taking down a hugely over-grown honeysuckle that had been stomping on my last nerve. Good workout , large visual impact and great satisfaction!

  13. I always have a lot of different projects/tasks going on. I work best if I rotate between them, never getting tired of just one thing. It sounds a bit like ADHD, but I really get a lot completed this way without getting frustrated or overwhelmed.

  14. I could not get my cell phone to come to your site yesterday, so did not tweet or answer comments on my post and I just did all sorts of other activities until I could sit at the computer and take care of business. I also did not post a book review but I can post it now – thank you for tweeting it anyway!!! and I take care of that business now.
    I think the biggest walkaround in my life. Was working with Doctors, nurses and therapists to present the right notes to insurance companies for my daughter 12 Plus major surgeries for her complete cleft palate and no ear tubes. We kept having to rewrite and rewrite to find things that the companies would cover. We had $5K deductible and we spent over $253K of our own money to get the procedures done. Covering the surgeries by calling them something different helped a goodly amount As you may already know – CLEFT PALATE repair (except the lip closure) is not covered in the USA…..and she would not have any insurance now except for ACA as she will always be a pre-existing condition all her life Her company fortunately covers her now even her dental….. Lots of walkarounds Lots of money….

  15. That’s a good one! It reminded me of the ‘workaround’ (though I’d call it stupidity in this case) of people painting the road lines at the side of the road in the UK sometimes; when cars have been parked in the way, they’ve been known to give up on two straight lines and just paint around the car instead 😂

  16. As someone with a dissociative disorder I tend to lose three to four hours of my day. To compensate for lost time I keep a list of tasks to complete each day. For most people a ‘to do’ list is common sense, but for me the list is essential to being productive. Without it I would forget what I’m doing and why. I hope this makes sense.

  17. I spend my whole life walking around ,everywhere and everything. It’s the only way to find something a little unusual . It was how I found you 😊

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