I began surfing about, looking for tables and lamps and used restaurant booth-benches on the internets, without finding much that captivated me, and then I heard my own solemn sententious voice, in a recent sermon, saying build one to throw away.
It's a software saying. "Rapid prototyping" is the dignified term. You don't really know what you're making till you've built it, so don't get ahead of yourself with planning and designing. Build a crappy one first, and then you'll know what building one is like. You'll know what the hard parts are, and which parts you don't need to worry about, and above all, once you have a clunky prototype and use it a few times you'll have some idea as to whether it even addresses the problem you're trying to solve. Remarkably often, projects turn out not to do that. They're intelligent, compelling solutions to problems that no one actually has. And there is the short history of a hundred failed dot-coms.
So I stopped looking for lamps, tables, chairs, and I just built a crappy workspace from the materials at hand:
|Work Space: Rapid Prototype|
And, when I began to use it, I realized: no way. Not here, ever. It's too low, and there's too little natural light. I will never want to work in a place that feels like a burrow. I want to be up in the light, up where I can see the sky, preferably on the roof of the Astronomy tower. That is the problem. Tables, lamps, and chairs are neither here nor there. I need a view.
I have no idea how I'm going to do that. But at least now I know what I'm trying to do. And I haven't thrown away a lot of time and money on acquiring, and trundling about, a bunch of irrelevant stuff.
And I worked a couple hours this morning in the living room, with real physical books, in the light of the big window, and felt happy. I'm working again, for real.