Disapproving cat finds Time Machine annoying

Embarrassingly for a computer professional, I spent much of the past 12 months with a personal laptop that wasn't backed up. And I don't mean "I backed it up infrequently", I mean there was no backup – period. I use OSX and Time Machine would simply churn on "Preparing Backup" for days on end – one time I even let it run for a full weekend – to no avail.

I even followed all the LifeWire tips and still nothing.

What solved it was finally almost running out of space and discovering that I had a single directory of files that contained almost 552 gigabytes of crawl data from my failed Udemy misadventure. Sigh. Deleting all that data magically made Time Machine work again.