John's right - HTML was never meant to do what its being used for and though its been improved it has some inherent constraints. Nonetheless, its what we got - HTML is the esperanto of the Web.
As for using a table - it certainly is doable and in fact, its been done. And yes, this is the way to do what you're asking about. See the following for nickle tour. http://www.lighthousekeepers.com/forums/Forum8/HTML/000018.html
Course thats not to say its straightforward if you don't know HTML, or even if you do, if you're hand coding.
For now, check the above reference. If you're up to a challenge, you can cut n paste from my example in Factoid #8. Sometime in the next day or so I'll try putting together a template you can copy.
Or if you really want to dive in (yellow caution lights begin flashing here) nab yerself an HTML editor - do your thing with the tool, then paste into the message window.(Use of tools is one of those things anthropologists tend to pick up on.)
HTML editors? I've got pretty strong biases here. There are lots on the market - some are 'ok', many are junk, few are chosen. This forum meister's choices are two:
by Allaire - they have a free eval copy you can download and try for a limited time. My personal favorite with the caveat I'm not a webmaster nor play one on this forum. Course for here you don't need a lot a fancy stuff - that's why we have John :->. This product takes a text based approach that gives you a lot of control - just the way developers like it. http://www.allaire.com/products/homesite/index.cfm
by Macromedia. This is a WYSIWYG editor (pronounced 'wizzy-wig', short for 'what you see is what you get'). This lets you design a page as you would see it - its graphical and lets you manipulate objects like pictures and widgets. Its nice and its built in intelligence doesn't get in your way. (Unlike certain products from our friends with the flying monkeys in Redmond. I know some folks here use it, but my suggestion is to avoid FrontPage9x like the plague.)
Dreamweaver is also available as a free download eval. http://www.macromedia.com/
Go for it Fred - HTML programming is really pretty simple once you grasp the basics. 3 weeks after you think its pretty simple then it'll start to get interesting. Challenging but fun and lets you be creative.
Bongo the GeekBoy