To-do list

– hold a crystal clear vision of who you will be by the end of the year, and focus efforts to become him
– end the non-stop monday morning quarterbacking of work mgmt decisions
– end the jealousy of seeing a local nobody getting small recognition — aspire to bigger ponds not bigger fishes in small ponds
– continually retain the notion that certain activities are ultimately negatively beneficial–short term gains will never make up losses incurred

if you bother to read into the me of college

if you bother to read into the me of college, you’ll find a young man obsessed with being “anti-logical”, expressive, creative, free. if you were even more patient than that, and attempted to cobble together a manifesto of sorts, you’d see a tormented soul who hated the fact that his freedom to explore unchecked novelty in thought was funded by his father, who wished for him to be more discriminating in his studies, and his father often hinted that an engineering degree was the path to sure life happiness.

you’ll find a young man taking it as a given that he would oblige his father with the final touches of a random liberal arts degree before pausing back at the family home for a jaunt in office slavery to pay off the screwball college credit card debts (no student loans, thanks to this young man’s father, just credit card debt he racked up being stupid), and on to nyc for a life of trying to emulate as many writers and artists from the 40s-70s as he could.

if you bother to read into the me of 2003, when such quests for unchecked novelty and freedom had landed me into a straitjacket of a smothering girlfriend, odd older lady friend and other weird, overbearing coworker friends, you’d find a still-young man bent on twisting all that twisted life of compulsive creativity back into rigidly perfect lines. he’d repeat such forays into ferocious discipline for at least five years to come, alienating everyone around him in his shaved-head descents into a true army of one. certainly not overtly militant (no guns or camo or martial arts classes), but nevertheless a life aesthetic of stomping out all of the freedom-loving, anything-goes, hippie screwball in imitation birkenstocks.

the me of today sees the value of both–they are two sides of one brain. he sees the value in not reducing them to two sides of one brain, but rather allowing his desire to conform and categorize, organize and analyze complement his desire to rebel against anyone who would adjust socially and tick off the standard milestones until death.

however, the me of today sees a greater value in finding and celebrating the moments when the “flow” doesn’t get stuck. which is to say, no more getting hung up on self-made rules that were imposed by an unchecked, unquestioned imagination.

The obligatory morning slap of the keys

The obligatory morning slap of the keys and black sans letters across the white canvas. Nothing looks quite right once the canvas is marred by my fumblings of the moment. Moments throughout the week of being almost paralyzed with gloom from watching the day tick by at an agonizingly slow pace, while knowing that all who work around me are not interested in my halting attempts to socialize. No more patient faces to greet my ideas and humor–they fired or laid them all off–or those faces proved to be utterly polite, even patronizing.

My sense of humor seems to be almost impossible for anyone to grasp–most people are too literal, and few get how much I’m willing to poke fun at myself lightly, thinking I must be some kind of masochistic self mutilator.

It’s in the moment of the wearying nod, the smile that is rapidly fading as muscles are forced to hold it in place–it’s in that moment you really see how someone values you.

Tripping through a few old e-mails, last cleaned the gmail folder right before Mom died. Some random apology to D, and a wordy rebuke for something I said to her the night before. I can hardly remember what we were fighting about most of the time. It’s like that with a lot of things. You get so emotionally and personally attached to a person or work, and then when they’ve booted you from their space you can hardly recall what charged your passions toward them.

Just writing to write. To be consistent about something

Just writing to write. To be consistent about something. To weave a minor thread throughout this forgettable quilt. Insights are hitting me fast these days, too fast to pause and put them onto the screen. To store them on a hard drive, flash drive, online backup.

I can see the years behind me now as a course of victim-as-weapon. All the times you might have hurt me, or any perceived slight, becomes ammo to throw in your face should the opportunity ever arise.

First, I had to stop caring completely—about why I wasn’t negotiating life successfully like you do. Then, I had to see that most of what you’re winning from life isn’t what I wanted, anyway. Finally, I had to see myself in that awful light, where I sat and stewed, hurt from some past transgression, waiting to spring it back upon you—make you feel guilty, return the hurt a hundredfold so that you’d be certain to feel my pain. And, no, I would not stop until you were visibly hurting. Of course, by then you were out of my life—either dead or permanently departed.

No worries, because you always came back—with a different face or name—it didn’t matter. I was too much of a sociopath to believe that there were billions of individuals sharing the planet with me. Instead, it sufficed for me to warp my reality until each soul that interfaced with me was merely the same soul, transmogrified by higher dimensional, alternate reality magic.

Through all my endless talk of self improvement, it became clear that self improvement was not the goal so much as finding a way of being where I could obtain access to large numbers of people to treat inhumanly, lording over them whatever my sick soul desired. A way of being that was perfected to win the confidence of my future cult, but never to compromise my precious, perfect soul.

Without the love and guidance of my mother, I would have ended life abruptly, as a madman, serial killer, cult leader, philanderer, or something much worse. She instilled in me basic morals you take for granted. At my worst, I still could not shake them.

Finally, I realized that whatever good inside me was there in spite of me, not because of me. It was there because of God and my parents, and teachers and other adults in the community who refused to see me turn completely to Evil.

And, I realized that all of you around me had long since truly developed yourselves into being the human beings you were meant to be, while I’d lurked about in the grass like a slithery gray slug, hoping secretly I’d get to be a snake someday.

i’m really close now to ending it

i’m really close now to ending it–the messiness, the unwanted character traits, the unneeded things. i hate to proclaim it, but i want to proclaim it: i think i’ve found something that can preoccupy my time for years to come without turning into just another diversion/distraction/detour.

from september of last year until now, it has been a rather rocky road. i immersed myself heavily in booze, m and passive entertainment. over $3K expenses came up on the car, and it’s still falling apart. my work environment has gone from being one where i can at least feel like i’m going in, doing my job and leaving to being one of utter chaos and unhappiness.

however, as i realized after j and l commandeered all things marketing last year, within any obstacle in life there is always the promise of an opportunity. the cs almost gig is an example. just proof that good things can come out of crisis and tragedy.

i had no intention of spending the year immersed in sloppy behavior, nor did i want to have another 2009, 08, 07, 06…etc. where i think i’ve seized upon IT, the magical thing to consume my time and take me somewhere, only to discover that at the end of the rainbow are people promising me more rainbow and hard work. which would be okay if a pot of gold popped up now and then to spur me on. all meant to be absolutely metaphorical, of course.

the possessions have been culled down to a tight collection of “must have’s” only. very few unnecessary things left. a few books i have yet the urge to part with, and some art, photos and writings.

i’ve been approved to go track down a $150K condo. it’s my belief that this will help me save my money better, instead of spending it on countless trips to the coffee shop and corner store. though, one of the condos that really charms me is located directly behind the coffee shop which is between the condo and work.

the real heart of the matter

the real heart of the matter lies in the tendency toward many varied goals with no single, concrete one.
the abhorrence of the single concrete goal comes from the ensuing desert that appears when all of life’s activities become about achieving that goal.

the overarching theme is a call to service of others.
the constant snare is finding one’s self caught up in serving whomever stumbles onto the path along the way while attempting to serve the least of these.

with a servant’s heart, it’s easy to see how anyone who gets to know you thinks it’s okay to use you more than a little, and that you think it’s okay, too.

the least of these may be living in nice houses, hiding behind a lot of money.
the not-so-least of these may be living in poor areas, broken and damaged beyond any help anyone but Jesus can offer.

the problem, then, isn’t always finding one’s self in the service of those who could just as easily help themselves (and probably should). it’s being able to detect those who really need access to the gifts God gave you.

then, there is that whole problem of truly understanding the gifts God gave you.

how do i work?

how do i work?
all things must be kept in balance, to achieve the closest thing to happiness in the work environment.

intense multi-tasking must be balanced with intense focus on one project.
intense ideation and strategizing must be balanced with intense application of ideas and tactical maneuvers.
code with graphic layout
mouseful work with keyboardful work
computer with people
stationary with movement
independent work with teamwork or 1X1 collaboration
stress and deadlines with downtime to train, think, clean up, rebuild

when all these things are working in harmony with each other, high productivity occurs. when a supervisor demands large amounts of research and reporting and there is little practical work to be done, it begins to feel like no work is getting done at all. on the other hand, when a supervisor and others are demanding a high amount of practical and even menial work without seeking my expert opinion on anything, it begins to feel like i’m the lowliest intern.

how do i think?
lots of reaching for ideas others overlook. lots of attempts to help others realize their ideas. a tendency to match those around me in terms of pace of discussion, mood or energy of group or other, and strong willfulness to help and serve until i’m clearly being used and not treated as an equal, integral part of the group.

which individuals do i enjoy talking to the most? the least?
a select group of people seem to fall into two categories here: great to work with, hateful to be friends with — then, vice versa.

then there are the vast majority who are not really great to talk to professionally or personally. they operate on wavelengths that are at all obtuse angles to mine. they are dismissive of my creativity, ultra-elitist toward the way i appear to interface with culture, or just plain interested in things that i am not. many are not intellectually curious, most are overly materialistic, and almost everyone i don’t get along with have values vastly different than mine.

people i enjoy talking to can seem very slow to the fast-paced overeducated–but, they are enjoyable because it is readily apparent they possess a deep and rich wisdom and appreciation of life and people that goes beyond merely possessing a lot of knowledge or a clever brain.

most people seem to come across as thinking they are too good for me in one or more ways–or, they are just plain apathetic to me. which is okay, because i likely appear to be the same way to various others.

what do i like about computer interfaces? hate?