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Deb Slutzky reports: <<Sometimes I think I'm going crazy!>>
Been there, done that... then I learned the following mantra: "Word
happens." I'm feeling much better now. <g>
<<I'm using my home laptop and I tried to access the Symbol dialog
box from the Insert menu in WORD and it is not there. It is NOT just
greyed out either. It does not exist on the menu at all. Right now
I'm using Office Pro 2003; but I didn't have it when I was using
Office 2000 on the laptop either. >>
The usual cause of this symptom is that Word has noticed you aren't
using that command much, and has decided to hide it for you. But if
you've actually clicked the little down-arrow at the bottom of the
Insert menu (to expand the menu), and you still don't see the command
there, that's not the cause. If you have enabled this "feature", you
can turn it off via the Preferences/Options... I believe in the
General or View tab, but I'm not using 2003 so I'm not sure where
Microsoft hid this option.
The second biggest cause is that you inadvertently pressed Control-
Alt-Hyphen (Command-Option-Hyphen) right before you inserted a
Symbol, and thereby activated Word's "destroy the interface without
notifying anyone" feature. (See the online help under "Customize".
<g>) The only clue you ever get that this is about to happen is the
cursor turns into a big, thick "minus" sign: minus means "subtract",
thus "subtract the next thing you touch from the interface". Clever,
huh? No, you don't get a chance to tell Word that's not what you
really meant to do.
Should you ever see the cursor, just press Esc to make it go away. If
you've already eliminated half your interface, you have two options,
both accessible from the Tools-->Customize feature. First, if you
don't have any interface customizations that you want to preserve,
simply click the "Reset" button: Word will refill all the old menu
items and toolbar icons, good as new. Second, if you have only
eliminated a few functions and have one or more customizations you
want to preserve, simply drag any missing menu items or toolbar
buttons back into place.