July 31, 2006


Filed under: Life through my lens,Parenting — base2wave @ 2:24 am

A co-worker pointed out to me the other day that I was quickly approaching the time when I’d have to start packing lunch everyday for the Goblin. While it was a simple declarative statement, I realized I was crossing over into a new phase in my life. Sure, it’s just packing lunch. But, gone are the days of hurrying out the door at the last moment, periodically forgetting a stuffed animal, or my sunglasses, or an iPod, etc. I now have to make sure that everything is taken care of the night before, ready for us as we load up the car and depart to our respective days.

It’s an emotional response, really. It’s the immediacy; I can’t pretend that I am still fancy-free [Not that I really ever did, but I could have if I wanted to. Maybe.] I’m just adjusting to a deeper “settling.” The transition isn’t a bad thing; I kind of welcome it.

So this weekend I embraced it; And Goblin & I went shopping for lunch boxes and back packs. [Side Note: Am I the only one who finds the amount of Camouflage back packs slightly alarming given the current “climate” re: violence in schools]. Wading through the chaos of frenzied back-to-school shopping, she INSTANTLY knew which back pack she wanted. And I sure it come as no surprise to those of you who know here she chose this :

Backpack Festivus

Also pictured is the matching insulated lunch bag she subsequently found. Much to my dismay, and despite my efforts to encourage her to “diversify” her choices, she didn’t chose this one :

Supergirl Lunch Box

Look close, it’s got faux safety-pins through the logo. She didn’t understand the intricacies of the fun of punk rock chic. Oh well.

So wish me luck. She start’s Kindergarten in 10 days and we both enter a new phase in our lives [despite accessory differences. Oh well :)]

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July 22, 2006

Through the Lens

Filed under: Life through my lens — base2wave @ 11:23 pm

I feel disconnected lately. More accurately disassociated; Like everything is scripted and rehearsed. Soundtracked and laid forth, minute by minute, for me to watch and hear from within my skull, almost passive. I’m sure weekends alone and the distance from L exacerbate the sensation [or is it a lack of sensation?]. But I find myself not talking to anyone for hours, sometimes even days without even hearing my own voice. I can’t decide if I enjoy the quiet observation like this or not. It tends to give me the opportunity to focus on whatever I like. Endless stream of conscious monologues. And movement takes on an instinctual quality. Motions happen fluidly but without discrete thought. My car feels not like an extension of my body, but rather like a vessel for my brain. It’s like a modular consciousness that can be transplanted into whatever is necessary at the time.

But transitioning back into an interactive functional mode, dealing with other people is jarring. I get easily agitated and long for the quiet again. I look at interaction with others with a queasy sort of feeling [though I long for L’s touch again; only a little more than a month until she returns home].

I have trouble reconciling the paradox of my beliefs; I know I can’t view myself as separate from the universe but rather as part of it. But despite that knowledge, I find myself feeling more & more detached from it.

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July 6, 2006

Doogie Howser, M.D.: Blogging Pioneer

Filed under: Geek-ery — base2wave @ 1:11 am

Bloggers of the world, it’s time you acknowledged your forefathers! Let us all raise our glasses high and acknowledge the Blog-father, Doogie Howser, M.D.

Ok, In truth this has precious little to do with Doogie Howser, where ever our little [I suppose he’s not so little anymore] protégé may be right now. But rather more to do with a mental connection spawned off of a new piece of software I am testing using right now called Dark Room.

I’ve been obsessed with increased efficiency in my creative/productive endeavors lately. Everything from a minimal but useful selection of tools hiding in my heads-up display for Yahoo’s Widget Engine to tabbed command line interfaces. These tools keep me organized and quickly informed. They keep my desktop clean, too. They don’t however do much to keep me distraction free. My RSS Aggregator tends to flash something new at me every thirty minutes or so. Same with my mail indicator. And then there is the temptation of the time murderer that is the Web. For all my increased productivity and information access, I was continually multi-tasking, to the detriment of the things that wanted my focus, like a blog entry.

Well, via one of my usual news feeds came a post regarding a piece of software for the Mac called WriteRoom, specifically designed for “Distraction Free Writing.” I flashed with jealousy and moved on with whatever it was I had been doing before I saw this. About 3 days later, the same news feed presented me with a link to DarkRoom; a WriteRoom clone for Windows [Written simply cause the programmer liked the idea, but had to use a PC.]

I downloaded the app, sat down, and fired it up for the first time. One second later, my screen was black, sans a blinking cursor at the top of the screen. It’s slightly jarring, honestly. No menus, no toolbars, just big, black empty space [Even more empty space on my Widescreen]. But once you start writing it’s true beauty shines. The complete quiet away from all my tools and gadgets allows me to focus on pure content.

Heavy multi-tasking is a requirement of my job and a talent I use to my advantage. I tend to require [and largely enjoy] real-time processing of near-continuous data streams from varied sources. Despite this, having the ability to background “it all” and focus my energies on just one thing when I need/want to is already proving to be a true tool to my creativity that I’d rather not do without.

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July 5, 2006

Buddha in Pigtails

Filed under: Life through my lens — base2wave @ 10:00 pm

I never really thought I’d be single parent. Who really does, I guess? But in never really thinking about being a single parent, I never really realized just how hard it would be. Sure, there are the relatively easy-to-understand things like making arrangements when you have to stay at the office late. And the exhaustion at the end of the day of being the sole responsible one; making dinner, baths, age-appropriate entertainment, education, bedtimes, handling sickness, etc; all after you’ve already had your nose to the metaphorical grind for 8 some-odd hours. Even a non-parent can at least visualize the work, and often exhaustion.

The harder, more abstract issues sneak up on you. Reconciling the person you see day in and day out, turning from helpless infant into curious toddler before your eyes becomes a little person; grown in a great many ways. It’s sometime difficult to remember that no matter what leaps and bound, what great achievements your child has made, they’re still just a child. And in that centered largely on gratification of their own needs and desires. They’re not emotionally manipulative creatures, just rather narcissistic [And I don’t mean this negatively, it’s vital for survival, evolutionarily speaking]. They don’t understand jealousy, thankfully. This can make parenting [Not just single-parenting] emotionally exhausting. With no explanation for the desire they may want the other parent, or grandparent, or whatever despite your own need and desire to spend time with them. And frankly it hurts, being an “emotionally mature” creature with these complex emotional structures based on years of conditioning and leveraged, meticulous self-interest when your child simple would rather be somewhere else with someone else, at least for that brief flash of time.

I’ve known since day one, as much as I am teaching her, she is in turn teaching me. I guess I hadn’t realized my daughter would help be understand philosophy better…

The Second Agreement:

Don’t Take Anything Personally: Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering

From “The Four Agreements” by Miquel Ruiz [LINK]

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July 1, 2006

They Don’t Pay Me Enough… #01: Gay Neophytes [or Plugging the Wrong Port]

Filed under: They Don't Pay Me Enough — base2wave @ 8:37 am

Today we begin a semi-regular installment entitled “They Don’t Pay Me Enough…” These entries should serve as a collection of Stupid User Tales I encounter in my day job [For those just tuning in, I’m the Systems Manager for a local arts company]. So without further adieu:

They Don’t Pay Me Enough…
Episode #01: Gay Neophytes [or Plugging the Wrong Port]

Earlier this week, I received a visit in my office by someone from upper management. To be exact, it wasn’t someone from upper management [Whom we’ll call “Big Wig”], but rather their life-partner [Mr. C] [Who has recently acquired a job at my company]. Big Wig and Mr. C have been supplied a computer in their home by the company. This particular model of computer has built-in support for a wireless keyboard & wireless optical mouse. Said mouse has been giving them a handful of semi-legit issues, so I gave Mr. C a new USB wired mouse, as wireless was not a critical requirement for them. I explained how and where to plug it in, what a USB port looks like, etc.
Friday afternoon I received call from Mr. C saying he had plugged in the mouse, but still nothing was working. I had him double check that is was plugged all the way in and some various other troubleshooting ideas before resigning myself to the fact that I’d have to swing by their house to get this resolved [Mind you a week or so prior I had to swing by diagnose another issue, which turned out to be resolved by replacing the batteries in the wireless keyboard…]. It’s not far from the office so I said I’d be there later that afternoon.

When I arrived, I immediately went upstairs where their computer resided hoping to make this a brief in-and-out trip so I could go home early too. Sure enough the mouse wasn’t working and there were no signs that windows had detected a USB mouse. So I traced the cord back to the back of the computer where I found it plugged in… To the Ethernet jack on the back of the computer. I didn’t event know you could not only fit a male USB A-style plug into a female RJ45 jack, but more impressively do it at an angle that doesn’t look jacked up. So, squelching my inner-hysteria I wrangle the cable out from the ethernet jack and plug it into a free USB jack, not 1/4″ away from the ethernet jack. Windows sees a mouse, Mr. C is thrilled [albeit confused as to what he did wrong], and I move on [smirking that I now have a new blog entry at his expense]…

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