A Lovejoyman E2 Late-Autumn Sabbatical Roundup

DISCLAIMER: This is truly a blathering self-absorbed daylog, but I've missed you guys. Maybe by spilling my guts to you, you'll spill some of yours toward me. (Yick, but you know what I mean.)

Bless me Father for I have sinned. It has been 48 days since my last writeup.

Where or where to begin?

Resuming the experiment of one

For the last 20 years, any physical endeavor I've started has had a goal at the end. Run a sub-40 10K. Swim a mile in under 20 minutes. Finish a 50K. Deadlift 300 pounds. However, in the past two years I've been injured, sick and frustrated more than I have in the previous 18 by trying to attain these arbitrary marks.

Pneumonia, flu and tendonitis -- the result of running either too much or too little. Tweaked lower back and achey right hip thanks to overly aggressive powerlifting. Right shoulder gound to dust by swimming and polished off by lifting. To be honest, I'm a little tired of this.

Also, generous helpings at every meal for the past two months combined with a determined lack of direction have forged me in to a woefully unfit Pillsbury Doughboy. The force needed to button my pants in the morning nearly dislocates my shoulders. This sloth, however, allowed me to heal, and now I'm ready to hit it again.

No screw-ups this time. Perhaps I should just quit obsessing on the end product and just enjoy the trip. Maybe I should take my own damn advice.

A career is just a job you've had too long. -- Warren Miller.

Job-wise, I'm still stuck in hell. I've got benefits now so I'm here for a while. My plan for getting out, however, has gone through multiple incarnations in the past few months.

For years friends and family have urged me to open a restaurant -- a small breakfast/lunch/bakery. I did some research, a soul search and then decided against it. The clincher came when after work one day RunningHammer cozied next to me on the couch and said, "Put your arm around me, Daddy." Knowing that I'd be spending at least 18+ hours every day at the store and missing moments like this made it an easy decision.

After having some extensive work done on our house, I thought, "Hmm. I could do that." I've always want to weld and looked in to that. Alas, no place to learn it in this area.

Radiography seemed to satisfy my inner geek while at the same time offering a lot of opportunity. Schooling, it turns out, is too long for me to justify and packed with classes that make my eyes glaze over.

I applied and interviewed for a job in yet another department of my company. It was OK that I didn't get it until I learned it went to someone the department manager had decided on even before the interview process began.

All this time I've still been sending out resumes and trying to maintain my meager programming skills. Waking up one morning, my mind relaxed and twirlling a function between its vaporous fingers, it hit me: I want to write code. It's what I've been doing in all my scarce snippets of free time. Even if I received a job offer to scrub toilets, but had as a secondary duty maintaining dusty lines in ancient programs, I'd jump at the chance.

So I signed up at Sourceforge hoping that perhaps I can help on some project and get some actual experience. I'm wading through K&R again (New Testament) and starting on Python. I'm going back to school for a series of Oracle classes that prepare you for their DBA certification. As squishy and dorky as it sounds, I love this stuff.

Sheesh! Right now my dream is to get an entry-level programming job. Sometimes I feel like a tone-deaf cellist shooting for first chair, but I won't give up.

Any hints or suggestions regarding this course of action are welcome, appreciated and eagerly awaited.

Diamonds slipping through my fingers

There have been other timepiece-defying milestones appearing on the shore of Lovejoy Island:

  • RunningHammer is potty trained. You folks know what a big deal this is. However, like a tiny George Costanza, he has to take off all his clothes to go. Great cheers and celebrations ensue with each deposit.
  • I have it on good faith that Santa's bringing SweetFaceBoy a drum set. His teacher is blown away with his progress. While watching "School of Rock" he was stoked by the clips of Keith Moon, but, knowing that whole story, I'm steering him toward Neil Peart and Mickey Hart.
  • Vonda MaShone plays violin next week in a huge Christmas concert. Straight A's and voraciously reading Lemony Snicket and Chronicles of Narnia. Now if his parents would each fall in to a wood chipper, everyone would be better off.
  • I have finally finished The Return of the King. This is a big deal because I take forever to read a book and because I did it before the movie came out.
  • My incredible sweetie and I have finally agreed that it is time I visit Dr. V. Yes, there were discussions and arguments and silence and time, but we reached an agreement. Just have to find a urologist and do all that insurance and referral stuff. "Just hurry up and get it done," she said. I liked the tone of her voice.
  • My Nearly Naked Summer ended without fanfare, only goosebumps. Officially it was 10.27.03, pretty much the last day I could putter around the backyard wearing only my Tevas. The next morning I went for a jog, stripped, and decided quite quickly that the pool was now too cold. I'm looking forward to spring and my first trip to the beach.

Strangers stopping strangers, just to shake their hands -- Robert Hunter

During the move, my year anniversary here came and went. I had planned a deep and poignant daylog for it, but of course wrote nothing down and therefore those ideas have hit the road. (We are, I believe now, all the more lucky for it.)

I arrived by clicking on the link at Slashdot. Within four minutes I knew I wanted in. Since then I've written about sex, childhood sickness, household maintenance, paybacks and snow. They among others are ideas and images and observations I never thought I'd put in to words, let alone allow anyone to read. Yet you did read them, and more often than not approved of them. Since I was in the eighth grade I've wanted to be a writer. Hopefully during the past year I've gotten closer to being one.

Also during the past year I've been lucky enough to chat with some of the smartest, coolest, most interesting people on the planet. Though idea of attending a nodermeet gives me the same feeling as BASE jumping (abject terror meets ticklish fun), perhaps that will change in the next year, and I'll actually get to meet some of you incredible people. (nota has valiantly tried.)

Anything else I could say about e2 and my feelings toward it have already been eloquently expressed by Lucy-S. I can do no better. I will, however, echo her words: You guys rock!!

I'm glad I discovered this place, though I don't believe in accidents. It's good to have everyone back. Like I said, I've missed you guys.

Now spill.