Posts Tagged ‘time’

Test: Time, Space and Everything in Between: The Astrophysics Quiz

2016-09-02 19:15:55 PDT

Time, Space and Everything in Between: The Astrophysics Quiz
I got:
You scored
28 out of 30

Find of the day: YouTube: Speed

2015-06-27 22:31:11 PDT

Find of the day: YouTube: Speed

Yes, sometimes one finds (or rediscovers) something rather to quite useful. Today, while watching a video on YouTube … something I was at least reasonably interested in, and more-or-less technical/scientific … but rather long (that okay in-and-of-itself), but the delivery pace too slow for my liking. Settings … Speed … Normal … 1.25, 1.5, 2 … ah nice. At 2x, about the right pace for me for that video, … and … get half my time back. Not bad.

I recall in past, typically visually impaired person, hearing or overhearing the sped up audio … always seemed like that would be unfollowable to me, but, actually, if it’s something I’m interested in – can work quite well, my head can suck it in pretty darn fast, and … much less likely I’ll nod off at the video being “too slow” when I’m watching and listening at twice “Normal” speed. I should use it more often, … probably will.


2014-03-30 14:20:44 PDT

Yeah, I’ve been taking a break from blogging.

When I started taking that break – hiatus – I figured it would be at least moderately long time, … perhaps “indefinitely”.


Time? Priorities? Sort’a, but that’s not most especially it.

Most notably, and not necessarily in any particular order:

Hardly anyone reads my blogs. Heck, only one person on the planet that I actually know. And it’s not like doing the blogging has increased that number. No, it was one before, and has stayed at one. I don’t know, maybe even shrank. For all the writing, and fair bit of it motivated as a “better” or “preferred” (or seemingly so) means of communication with that one person … well, that hasn’t worked out very well – for me, nor for for them. So, yeah, all the writing/blogging, hasn’t worked very well for me, for them, or me making any kind of real “connection” to anyone else on the planet.

Writing as communication/expression – to get it “out there”? That’s mostly been a means of last resort. No dialog, no communication (or dang near none), so … blog – “out into the world”? … more like out into the void. Mostly ignored, unread, unliked. I can do “out into the void” a whole lot more easily and efficiently, by not writing or communicating at all – just communicate nothing, or stay silent, or stuff it down, or whatever – helluva lot easier – and about as effective … if not even more so. It’s not like I’m at all unused to that anyway. Been doin’ that lots of my life anyway – and may pretty much always be stuck with such. Whatever. I’m used to it – know how to do it. Not a big deal to do lots more of that. Not that it gets me anywhere, but it’s not like blogging, for all the time and effort, etc., has served me much better … if even better … and, heck, for all the time and energy and angst, quite possibly even served me worse.

Doesn’t do anyone any good. Really, quite, it doesn’t – or such would certainly seem to be the case. Damn near no one likes my writing/blogging, I quite struggle with it and find it hard and very time consuming. And quite possibly creates more problems than it’s worth. E.g. of even closest to me – come to know my blog much more than me – really kind of pointless and counter-productive after a while. Ought be conversations, not blogs. And, well, if that isn’t happening, then mostly a lot of nothing. Which, actually, mostly gets to be better than a lot of almost-entirely one-way blog “communication” – and almost nothing else – that seems to become a lot more of a rip and separation of understanding, than a growth in understanding. Seems little to no communication is better than mostly blog and nothing, or hardly anything else. Seems to lead to less mis{understanding,communication,presumption} than with bunch ‘o blog and little else. Okay, sure, maybe leaves a lot more unknown and questions / “mystery”, than a bunch of blogging, but if unknown results in more accurate understanding of what’s known, and what is and isn’t known, and how it’s characterized, etc., well … unknown can be (and is?) a lot better than increasingly misperceived, misinterpreted, and incorrectly known – and that seems to increasingly and greatly occur with a mostly one-way flow – or at least highly lopsided “flow” (“flow” – even calling it a flow seems quite a stretch) of communication. Basically there’s pretty close to no feedback loop – so things tend to run off in directions that just aren’t good, useful – or accurate representation. And it’s not like my blogging is doing anyone else any good. Heck, not even me – especially for all the time/effort/angst/inefficiencies, etc. at working at it and attempting to (and, egad, the writing, and rewriting and editing, and sometimes just friggin’ giving up on that – but in most all cases it comes out pretty piss poor anyway).

Time, energy, priorities? Yeah, very busy … and/or quite not. The blogging just isn’t working well for me or anyone else, at least as far as I can tell. So, have taken quite a break from it – and will probably mostly continue to do so. It still amazes me how anyone ever got the impression that I like to blog. Can’t say I ever have. Really never been anything more than a last ditch effort at attempted communication/expression – when all else has failed. And, well, the blogging’s quite failed too. So, … mostly I go back to a lot of nothing on the communication. And, yeah, a lot of no communication is better than bad communication, so yes, it’s an improvement … really, it is – all ’round.

And I’m sorry, but I make no apologies for (okay, can we talk oxymoronic paragraph lead-in?) saying/writing, that for me, yes, the writing is dang hard, takes a lot of time/energy/effort – sometimes many hours or more – sometimes even days or more, for what ought be relatively simple bit of writing for even just one single blog post. It’s a lot of time, it’s a lot of effort. If folks don’t want to read/hear me mentioning that – that’s fine, don’t read it – nobody (or hardly anybody) reads it anyway. No one’s forcing anyone to read this (well, except maybe me forcing myself to read it – particularly when I write it – but maybe that’s also quite a bad thing). Okay, so maybe I’ll apologize that my writing is generally cr*p, and my editing skills generally lacking and under-applied, etc. But I’m not going to apologize for having written it (at least in general – unless I quite screw up and write something I really ought not have communicated or attempted to communicate). And I’m not going to apologize for writing/communicating that it’s hard and time consuming. It is. In general, I don’t want to be apologizing for writing what’s true or fact. Okay, sure, I’ll “apologize” for the reader’s difficulty in pouring through my material. I’m sorry that it’s not a breeze to read – and that it probably never will be. But I’m not going to apologize for writing it.

So, yes, lots of reasons to take a long – possibly even indefinite – break from the blogging. In short, the blogging, not good for me, not good for anyone else, don’t like doing it – hard – difficult – time consuming – and dang near zilch positive out of it. So, was time to stop. Certainly at least take quite a break from it.

Will I blog/write more, or again? Yeah, probably some bits on occasion. At least when I might particularly feel like it and be so inclined. In the past many months, can’t say there have been many such occasions. Really only a few or so times I even felt moderately tempted to blog something. So, maybe I’ll manage to more-or-less blog those occasional few somethings. Or maybe not at all, or hardly at all. And all the other stuff I might otherwise be inclined to blog? It really just doesn’t matter now, does it? Well, not much anyway. And generally certainly not enough that it ought be blogged about. So, … many months past – only a few things in mind to possibly blog. Maybe I’ll blog them. Maybe I won’t. Maybe I’ll only blog one of ’em or so. Whatever. Matters not. It’s not like anyone cares, or I matter. Okay, so maybe that’s not exactly true, but not far from it.

And so it goes. Maybe some “radio silence” is good anyway. Too much noise as it is, eh?

Me and Communication

2013-05-04 03:39:49 PDT

Me, and Communication.

First of all, minor aside – I don’t wanna and all that.  Much follow-up/follow-on blogging I wish to do on that – many relevant thoughts, etc., but, want to first cover what’s much more topically on my mind – communication – and, I’ve already drafted quite a bit regarding communication, whereas most all the stuff related to the I don’t wanna – is mostly just bumping around in my head, and hasn’t been typed out at all.  And, in case one was curious, my mood … slightly/moderately better than when I mostly wrote that I don’t wanna blog entry … but not all that substantially different.  And the mood is also relatively fickle and not nearly as “grounded” as it ought be … but I digress.  That’s for some subsequent blog posting to cover/update and follow-on to that.

So, a whole lot of thoughts – and also observations, even feelings, etc., regarding me and communication.  Been rather to quite thinking of that again (and typing up and writing/drafting stuff on it – most of which ought go on blog), and fair bit of it driven from some bits of specific feedback, but much, even most of it, from my own observations and thoughts on the matter.  And “the matter” is right.  Yes, something’s the matter with it.  At least generally.

What’s the matter with it?  I really wish I knew – quite similar to some other things I quite wish I knew, but am really highly in the dark about.

So, what does – and doesn’t – work with me and communication – most notably me attempting to communicate; let’s mostly ignore the bit about my reception of communication – at least for this blog posting, anyway (besides, as far as I know that’s somewhere between “okay” and quite good – certainly mostly seem to take things in quite well enough; perhaps fall rather to quite short on the “active listening” of the receiving side, but other than that, mostly seems to work between “okay” and quite well – at least in my guestimation).

First, what does work (hey, to knock it out of the way, ’cause it’s quite a bit “smaller” anyway).  I manage to be rather to quite the “good listener” – but alas, that’s reception bit – again, let’s skip that.

  • “Delivery” – on stuff I’m well versed in, e.g. fair number of technical topics, particularly in certain areas of interest/specialization/career to me, but others too, I can pontificate quite effectively.  Yeah, probably not ideally or highly optimally, but pretty darn well.  “Well enough” to be pretty darn good and efficient with the delivery information (often outperforming others by as much as around 4 to 1 (or more) on that – not to be braggin’ on that, but taking actually returned feedback forms, and quantifying to the extent feasible, that’s what it sometimes, and even fairly commonly, works out to).  So, yeah, I can quite well deliver such material, know such things dang well, can quite expertly field and answer questions (and do so), etc. A professional success (at least as and to the extent I do that … not that that’s mostly what I do, but not to uncommonly at part of what I at least occasionally do).
  • diarrhea of the mouth; the gift/curse of gab – most of the time I’m pretty darn quiet/silent, but … I can get going, and sometimes, and with some folks (but alas, definitely not the majority), that can and does actually work quite well.  Yes, some folks do very well with and can very effectively “suck up” and effectively use (and mostly “absorb” and/or process) a rather to quite heavy and steady flow of information/dialog – e.g. for hours or more on end (if/when my voice can actually handle that; do so damn little talking, can’t talk all that long at even a normal conversational volume – but at much quieter level I can go on much longer … or … well, … at least I think/hope I still can … don’t really know – haven’t had such occasion in … geez, … literally decades – at least for hours or more at a stretch, anyway).  Uhm, okay, so maybe that’s the quite rare exception?  But too, we’re talking small number statistics – not like I’ve done all that much conversing with all that many people.  So, percentage-wise, at least within my limited observations and experience, though most aren’t up to receiving that much at that kind of rate for that long, a non-trivial percentage are quite to highly up to and for it.  So, given someone that can take it in, I can pour it out – certainly at least if I’m sufficiently with what I’m communicating to whom.
  • “good” honest, forthright communication.  I’m a damn honest communicator.  Perhaps even to a fault.  I do that quite well, and care to.  I generally communicate what ought be communicated – certainly at least for stuff that particularly matters – and at least in circumstances of, say, existing relationship or quite good friend or better; also many other situations, e.g. relevant work contexts – I won’t be silent on what needs to be said or is particularly important to be said.  Sure, maybe I ought say more sooner, too, but for the most part I typically say approximately “enough”, and as relevant and appropriate (and important) in such contexts.  But not nearly so much (if even hardly at all) in more general social contexts.  So, … I do that rather to quite well in functional contexts, not social contexts … well, except in rather to quite well established “relationship” (rather to quite good friends or better) – communicate (at least generally and as feasible) rather to quite well there (but generally highly suck in other social contexts).

Okay, so much for what (more-or-less mostly) “works” – on me communicating well.  What doesn’t work – with me doing the communicating.  Oye, I fear this will be a long list – even if I forget to cover bunches of it, and/or coalesce a lot of overlapping or semi-overlapping areas:

  • social – I generally suck at social communication/interaction.  I quite wish I knew why/how that is, but I’m really quite without clue on that.  Sure, know some bits, but whole helluva lot I don’t know that goes wrong there – obviously very wrong, and far too repeatedly.  I can more-or-less do the idle chit-chat / banter – at least one-on-one (much worse at it in group settings), but as far as making more meaningful connections, all the evidence would indicate I mostly highly suck at that, and I’ve no clue as to why.  It’s not like there aren’t exceptions – sure, sometimes well connect with someone.  But those exceptions are so exceedingly rare, something’s got to be going significantly wrong in the other 99.97253% of the cases/interactions.  (okay, maybe that’s not the actual percentage, but it’s got to be in at least the high 90-something percentage range, almost certainly over 98%, and probably over 99%).  Stats/data?  Yeah, e.g. despite whole lot of effort and trying, how many good friends do I make how often?  Less than one a decade – really more like average of about one every 15 years or so.  Quite the sucky rate.  About similar for relationships.  Yeah, been trying to “date” again.  How’s that going?  <cough, cough>  Well, last about 2 years of that, met a grand total of 5 people, and how many of those have I gone out with – or even met more than 3 times?  Yeah, only 2, one of which – far as I can tell, seems unlikely anything’s gonna happen there (I rarely hear back, if at all), and the other – okay, so I got lucky, great friendship, but … relationship?  Not goin’ there – at all.  So, yep, generally quite sucks and have quite sucked at that – communication/interaction, in social context.  Even all the way back into school … college, made almost zero friends (pretty close, almost none particularly good/close, and not many more “casual” friends or whatever), and pretty much lost contact with those few I cared to stay in contact with beyond college.  12th through 6th grade?  Had  grand total of 2 friends … one at a time, over that span of time.  5th grade and earlier?  I think never really more than 2 friends concurrently – mostly just one at a time, and didn’t change all that frequently.  Not really sure before about 1st grade or kindergarten or so – my memory just doesn’t go back that far.  So, for all my efforts, and wanting to be much more connected, what goes wrong, why doesn’t it happen?  For the most part, I really don’t know, and quite wish I did.  
  • eye contact – important, and I’m fairly sucky about that.  With a lot of conscious effort and attention, I can do fair bit better on that – but I mostly only find that works okayish for me, if it’s one-on-one and the person is talking to me.  If I’m doing the talking, most of the time, and especially in group settings, looking at, watching, even glancing at other folks, as I’m talking, I find highly distracting.  I tend to totally lose my train of thought – pretty much any movement or reaction or action, even the slightest, as I’m looking at someone – or even looking fairly close towards them, tends to distract the hell out’a me, and I quite forget what I’m talking about – end to drop and stall mid-sentence, and forget what I was talking about, and can’t quickly remember and jump back into it – or even skip ahead to what’s next, or review what was before – all drops from my attention with the distraction, and I quite forget most anything and everything I was saying, said, or was about to say.  E.g. even in work meetings such as highly regular status meetings, where I’m giving verbal reports on status on various things – I’d very much not look at the other folks as I’d give my report.  If I did look, even glanced, as I was talking, I’d totally forget what I was attempting to cover.  So, yeah, I generally quite suck at eye contact – at least where I’m talking, and especially in group settings.  I dunno, maybe if I gave it a whole helluva lot of practice I’d to better with it, for figure out how to compensate?  Or maybe not – maybe I’m just “wired that way”, and there’s little to nothing I can do about it.
  • (social) group settings – I quite highly suck at that – most especially group social interactive, but even more generally than just social – certainly at least for what would typically be multi-way interaction situation.  I mostly end up saying almost nothing.  Not sure precisely how/why that’s the case, but, as I think what to say, usually by the time I’ve organized the thought and words enough that it’s otherwise appropriate, relevant, and timely to say, well … the conversation has quite moved on, and it’s become quite untimely to bring it up or add it that much later – so I typically don’t, and this repeats, over and over and over and over.  I’m also not particularly assertive, or comfortable with being so, so I’m generally not gonna interrupt other folks while they’re talking; which, in many group situations, if one doesn’t interrupt to talk, one ain’t gonna talk – and that happens with me a lot.  Typical group social events, e.g. I go to an event of about 50 folks, where I more-or-less no none of them, and most there also don’t know anyone else, or hardly anyone else … yeah, I end up spending the vast majority of the time, by myself, talking to no one, and no one talking to me … not that I wouldn’t want to be conversing, but mostly just doesn’t happen.  And when I look around in such a situation, I’m quite the minority.  There may occasionally be a very few others similar in that regard, but it’s typically an exceedingly small number/percentage – figure well under 5%.  Well, for better or worse, I’m typically well within that much less than 5%  Other typical scenario, modest group (say 6 total) of folks I know semi-well – e.g. some coworkers.  Hanging out, talking/conversing and … typically, I’m generally silent most or all the time.  Again, not that I don’t want to say anything; usually just a matter of poor timing and not being sufficiently assertive (and/or impolite) to interrupt.  So, by the time I’m set to say something, it’s no longer timely or sufficiently appropriate – so I don’t talk.  Or I never get opportunity, without interrupting – so I don’t.  I know, e.g., some coworker(s) have quite remarked on the rather rare occasion when I did speak – perhaps to call attention to its relative rarity – but to also encourage the other coworkers to shut up and listen for a change, rather than flap their jaws with never a moment’s silence among them.
  • communication style – perhaps more so now, but I’m getting some (presumably) good feedback on that.  And, much like my writing, my verbal communication also quite similarly sucks, … actually, probably – almost assuredly – sucks even much worse than my writing.  See, with my writing, you’re spared the most raw direct stream-of-consciousness form.  You get the generally edited after-the-fact version – often reedited many times and substantially revised, reorganized, shuffled around, cleaned up, etc., and … it still qutie sucks.  Well, the verbal … uhm, … yeah, … lots more sucky than the writing.  Generally exception would be my pontification upon some subject area I’m well versed in – that I can do, and comes out quite “organized” … pro’lly cause my head’s already been over the material hundreds or thousands of times or more (often ’cause I use it “all the time”, or at least quite commonly/frequently).  But, try to talk about, oh, what I’m thinking or feeling, generally, of the top-of-my-head, or likewise reaction or thoughts on something I’d not been exposed to before.  Uhm, yeah.  The form it comes out in … though it works well for some (a small but non-trivial minority), for most, it rather to quite sucks.  They find it (and can’t say I blame them) distracting, relatively unorganized, too many qualifications, exceptions, conditionals, much etc. – I dunno exactly how to best describe it, but hopefully you get the general idea of what I’m attempting to describe.  So, yeah, that tends to work rather to quite ineffectively with most people – though there are significant exceptions.  And I don’t know if it’s feasible for me to change that – or at least significantly/usefully so.  In writing I can do it – fix it, clean it up.  I know (more-or-less) how to do that.  But even with the writing, at least for me, it’s an exceedingly burdensome task to do or attempt to do that.  E.g. it’ll take me about 5 to 10 or more times the effort/time/resources to do such reediting/rewriting/clean-up of my writing – so often it’s just not worth doing or attempting to do – or at least not very much, anyway.  Okay, so maybe this time around you’re not getting a significantly re(rererere)edited version – not that that would improve it a whole helluva lot anyway.  Especially if it’s just gonna be read/skimmed once by one person, and then discarded or never reread – even if it was written highly well the first time they read my writing.  So, yeah, my style quite sucks on that.  “Fixable” in written form (with inordinately large amounts of time/energy/effort).  Another thing that, in written form, make it highly taxing for me to correct/edit, well, a couple of things.  First of all, since it’s rather to quite poorly written to start with, it’s hard for even me to read it, when I wrote it!  That makes it very difficult, and despite that I typically know quite what the author had in mind.  So, yeah, how it’s written/drafted, is hard and distracting for even me too, to read it.  And other things that make it especially hard for dealing with written form, and revising it – my head tends to know exactly what I wanted to communicate – so it tends to quite follow that train of thought – which may be rather to quite different than what actually got written.  My head also tends to go off on tangents, again, quite ignoring what’s actually written.  My head tends to not pay attention to what I have written, as it already quite presumes it knows what the intended communication was, and finds reading some written attempt at it to be an inferior source of information, and redundant to what’s already know.  And also making it very hard – sometimes exceedingly so, given those circumstances, my reading, and rereading it, especially when I try and focus my attention on what I actually wrote – tends to bore my head to death – so much so it’ll often tend to have me drift off to sleep … and not for lack of sleep – no matter how much sleep I got prior to such.  I could get 10 or more hours sleep the two nights before, then read some of my own writing in the middle of the morning, and my head will be nodding off highly repeatedly, over, and over, and over again (yeah, redundant … empahsis).  In verbal form?  I don’t know that I can “fix” that, or even come close.  Perhaps because it runs close to how I think, and stuff first comes out (and even how it mostly subsequently comes out).  I really don’t think I could so radically change how I think, such that the verbal communication would come out much better – or even significantly different – the first time around.  So, yeah, can be quite “taxing” for others to listen to.  Also, at least in part … not only honesty and the like, but precision.  Career, etc., I tend to be precise in how I say things – it is often important, if not critical.  So that tends to go to my more general writing, and also speaking.  My statements tend to be highly factually accurate.  And in most/many cases, that “needs” a lot of qualification, caveats, exceptions, etc.  So, while perhaps useful, even important, in many cases in, e.g. my professional work (and similar contexts), can be … uh, a significant encumbrance in more general (e.g. social/casual) circumstances/constructs.  But, … it’s not like some switch I can just turn on and off – certain at least not something I’ve figured our or learned how to do, anyway.  In many regards, mybe I’m just “hard wired” that way – quite the general way I “think” and stuff comes out, and it’s not feasible to change?  Or, maybe it’s changeable with practice.  Lots of practice.  But I’ve highly no audience (not even an audience of one) to have a conversation with.  Where the hell would I get sufficient regular and quite repeated feedback to have even a fighting chance of improving that?  So, perhaps far too late to significantly change that … even if it were otherwise possible.
  • Hmmm, maybe there aren’t “all that many” ways/areas where my communication highly sucks (list seems of few items, but long items.)  But they are major areas with highly broad scope, and quite critical in their impacts and failures (certainly critical to me).  May also be lots of additional ways/areas in which and how it’s failing, but I’m just not aware – most notably of why.  As I did say, I’m relatively clueless on much of this.  I guess the Reader’s Digest version on the failures would read something more like: sucks at social, style, eye contact; and significantly more so with those failings in group situations; limited exception areas of relative “success”.

So, something(s) goe(s) very wrong.  Something’s the matter – but what?  And can it be “fixed”?  So, yes, me, communicating, highly sucks/fails on several major fronts, and I really don’t particularly know why, other than those modest bits of information I point out.  Whole lot of motivation/interest/desire to “connect”, and mostly, highly, does not happen – mostly doesn’t even come close.  And that’s far far far too often – nearly always the case with me.

Tools, techniques, training, practice.  Ah, but there are methods, techniques, tools, training – lots of stuff to improve one’s communication!  Uhm, yeah, … “been there, done that”.  And not some random fad stuff either, good, well founded, more-or-less mainstream recommended best practices/techniques/training/etc.  And, … results?  A lot of time, effort, resource, practice, etc.  And much of it quite hard for me (much of it not easy for me to do – not my “natural” way of doing things, so takes lots of hard continuing focus/attention to do what should be much more optimal communication).  So, yes, been there, done that.  But results?  For all that?  Other than being a whole helluva lot harder for me to do, and boosting my mood/confidence some modest bit, the results, at least as far as I can perceive, or any net result I actually care about … the difference has been somewhere between negligible and zero.  So, it’s “obviously” not working for me – or certainly at least not very well at all – at least not any noteworthy or significant difference (other than making it a bit less painful – while at the same time a whole lot more hard).  I dunno, maybe the “wrong” approach or training or “practice”, or maybe it’s aimed at the “wrong thing”?  Maybe it could be “fixed” if it were known much more accurately what goes wrong and is not working.  Perhaps not so useful to try and fix, e.g. group social interaction, by having a one-on-one conversation (which I do relatively well at) telling me how to fix my group social interaction (especially with absolutely zero observation of my group social interaction – perhaps a highly flawed approach – trying to fix what’s not at all observed, but trying to extrapolate from fairly unrelated observations).  I dunno, I’d sure as heck very much like something that actually worked, and worked dang well.  But perhaps before that’s even feasible, it needs to be known/understood why things aren’t and haven’t been working.  Otherwise, isn’t one trying to “fix” what might not even be the problem to start with?  If I can’t see what the problem is, how am I gonna tell you what the problem is and you tell me to fix it – especially when you aren’t even there to witness it?  Seems like a hazardously poorly targeted approach.

Perhaps a significant – maybe even quite substantial – part of it, is, for the most part, I don’t like group social situations or interactions.  They generally tend to make me feel rather to quite uncomfortable.  Maybe sometimes I can more-or-less tolerate them or feel “okay” with them.  But like them?  Generally not the situations I want to be in – though I often put/push myself to be in them, or am more-or-less stuck in needing to deal with them regardless.  And, if I were a great social communicator, would I like group social situations?  Interesting question, but my guestimate, is I probably still wouldn’t like ’em.  I highly prefer one-on-one.  My inclination in group – no mater how comfortable I am or may be in group situation, is to be able to separate out and be one-on-one, and not stay within the group.  Why is that, why do I feel that way?  I don’t know – nature of who/how I am, and/or life experience and such?  I’m guestimating more of the former than the latter.  But don’t really know enough of early developmental history to know if that was ever different, or if something(s) may have significantly changed that at some point along the way.  And, unfortunately, most of the more common routes to one-on-one, are via group.  It’s almost/rather (if not quite effectively so), as if one typically needs “group approval” (consensus, or at least plurality), before one-on-one – as in peeled off from the group, becomes a possibility – or at least reasonable probability.

Not all that long ago, someone close to me, remarked on my blogging, terming it, if not literally, at least effectively, a “hobby”. I thought that quite the misnomer. I later replied, privately to that person, including:

At the same time, it’s hard.  Hard for me to blog.  Not that I don’t have the “gift”(/curse?) of ramble, but not especially easy for me to do.  Most notably the relatively little interaction/feedback.  Not that I’m complaining, or certainly not faulting, or anything like that.  Not at all.  Just sayin’, … that’s all.  Definitely not a hobby, or even “interest” – the writing/blogging.  Perhaps in rather to quite different context it could or might be?  But, “this” – my three sets of blogs here … it’s more like … “necessary outlet” – notably for lack of anything better available to me.  Just is how it is.  That’s all.  Just sayin’.

So, yeah, whole helluva lot I’d much prefer to blogging.  Most notably having good – even just reasonable – conversation with someone I actually liked and more-or-less reasonably trusted and felt reasonably comfortable with, and hopefully even at least semi-reasonably actually cared for me – or could at least fake it enough that I thought or felt that was the case.  Well, I ain’t got that, nor anything even particularly close to that.  So, for lack of better – really, as it’s got nowhere else to go, it goes to blog – maybe as something of bit of (psychological) survival – an outlet, expression/expressing, “venting”, hoping, dreaming, fearing – at least some place for some slight bits of that to go … as opposed to quite precisely nowhere, and totally unheard – not that it’s exactly heard a whole helluva lot or much or by many here.  And “conversation” or dialog – from blog?  Well, not to be blaming, nor even expecting such from here, but, yeah, that “feedback” is mostly pretty minimal to non-existent.  I do appreciate what bits are there, but, there’s not much there, and I’ve quite realized that, at least for the most part, I really shouldn’t be looking for or expecting that from here.  If I happen to get it, great.  But most of the time I should expect it just ain’t gonna happen.

And, I can not only think of a whole helluva lot I’d prefer to do over blogging, but a whole helluva lot of difficult, arduous – even painful tasks – that I’d prefer to do over blogging.  So, to say or imply this is “easy” – no, not at all.  Just less painful than being absolutely completely silent and unheard; or speaking and being completely and totally ignored and unheard – either feels about as damn isolating/isolated disconnected, and unwanted, uncared for, and ignored.  (What it is, and what it feels like, may not be exactly or particularly the same, but, regardless, that’s what it feels like – at least to me).  So, yeah, sometimes I put off blogging stuff ’cause it friggin’ hurts.  And then I blog it anyway – and it doesn’t exactly feel better.

Not that it’s all doom and gloom and always feels like sh*t and is “always” that hard to blog, but much/most of the time it is.  Whole lot of the time I’d really like to just be able to actually have a f*cking conversation with someone – but ain’t nobody there, continues to be nobody there, so said hypothetical conversation continues to not be an option, or even particularly close to one.  So to the blog it goes … or it goes nowhere (which is often the case … really can only blog so much; not only hard, but too, quite the resource burn for me – takes a lot of time and energy for me to do it).

Blogging is hard for me.  Yes, much of this material, and quite a bit that I’ve blogged, it’s hard for me to put out there – especially (even pseudo-anonymously) “to the world”, or even to some quite trusted few, or even one.  Hard in several ways – and, trying not to be too horribly redundant.  Hard in the (mostly) lack of feedback.  Hard in the effectively total lack of conversation and immediacy.  How the hell am I gonna improve in my social conversations if I never (or hardly ever) have any?  Dang hard in the writing and editing and rerereediging and revising, etc.  Burns a lot of time/resource for me.  It’s not like I’m some well practiced prolific writer that easily just cranks the stuff out in quite good form to start with.  In the last … well, let’s say about week (precise span doesn’t matter) – cranked out fair bit of blogging within that span (this, plus two other blogs, and multiple items).  Let’s just look at word efficiency and time.  I spend a lot of time and attention on this (in some major chunks, a few times, over about a week).  So, a fair (marginal) typist types 40 words-per-minute (WPM).  I type up to about a sustained 60 WPM.  I forget what people typically talk at, but it’s much higher, I think … let’s say 140 WPM.  If it’s balanced and bidirectional, say cut that in half, for a fairly “flowing” bidirectional conversation – 70 WPM.  How many hours have I put into this stuff in the last approximately week?  About 20 hours total (probably quite the underestimate, but, whatever).  How many “words” (using the rather standard WPM count of 5 characters per “word”) … let me add them up … 55,896 characters, 11,179 “words”.  So, in a relatively balanced bidirectional conversation, that’d be about … less than 3 hours conversation – with each contributing that much, or less than 90 minutes were it a “monologue” of a “conversation”.  “Instead”, it’s around 20 or more hours of my life, a lot of time and energy and resources, mostly just “gone”.  And, at that rate of 11,179 words per 20 hours, that’d be a typing rate of … 9.3 WPM, or … not even one character per second … about 1 character every 1.3 seconds.  Close to 10 times as slow as twice as much (a bidirectional) conversation.  And of course lacks most all that interaction/feedback, and of course immediacy.  Yeah, definitely not a “hobby”, or anything close.  Really quite and almost only for lack of anything better to fill that void, quite hard, often damn hard, and … sometimes rather to quite painful too.  And very horribly inefficient use of my time, but, egad, for friggin’ lack of anything better.

And so it goes.  For all the time/work/energy/resource into it, and so little from it, I oft find myself quite thinking, maybe I ought best just give up and not try – so much into it, so little out, why bother?  Maybe just “quit”.  Not really even bother attempting to communicate, “connect”, have or make friends, relationship(s), etc. – so dang little to show for it anyway.  Maybe just give up on all that, and learn to be “okay” with it – live alone, be alone, don’t connect, don’t much communicate, die alone – whatever.  So, yeah, sure, that alone – no touch, no connection, no communication, stats aren’t so good – die sooner. Whatever.  Life, sh*t happens.  We all die sooner or later anyway.  Why keep fighting a battle I seem both unable to “win”, and unable to make any significant useful forward progress?  Just do work ‘n sh*t like that, and give up trying to “connect” … ever.  Fine person I am, but really, who the hell wants me anyway?  Who the heck even knows – hardly anybody.  Such a waste – could be highly useful and advantageous to someone(s), but guess maybe “they” will never know, if they can’t friggin’ figure it out and I can’t friggin’ figure out how to get ’em to actually know me either.  “Oh well”.

And here I sit, contemplating the “Publish” button.  Do I click it?  do I really want to post this?  Hard, painful, exposing, vulnerable, blah, blah.  And will it make a damn bit of difference?  Probably none, or close to it.  What the hell … <click>

Quiz: Are You A Brogrammer?

2013-04-03 19:07:51 PDT

“Random” data point.  So, I took the “Are You a Brogrammer?” quiz.  I got:
Your Broficiency Quotient (BQ) is
…making you a

Well, I think I’d classify myself as nerd, rather than geek, but whatever.  A.k.a. “I is a nerd!”  :-)  Certainly not nerdly in all regards, but definitely many (and certainly not only and stereotypically so, but do have many nerdly traits/correlations).

And what motivated me to take that quiz?  Plentyoffish (PoF) – It wants me to update my profile.  First item it shows me is “Describe your personality in one word”. It offers me 52 choices, one of them being “Brogrammer”.  Wasn’t particularly sure what that was, so, Google … top two “hits” (search results), the first link to definition(s), the second, link to aforementioned quiz.  So, I take the quiz.  And subsequently looking at definitions – yeah, I’m not a “brogrammer”.  Don’t think I ever care to be some style piece for someone to hang on their arm.  Just not me.  I’m into substance, not flash.

And what the heck was I doing on PoF?  Well, still (mostly) backtracing (going backwards) here, had been a long time (many months or more – probably closer to a year) since I’d logged onto PoF, and also, with relatively negligible exceptions, been quite long (several months or more) since I’d logged onto OkCupid.  And, what the heck was I doing logging into those sites again?  Well, a few considerations/factors.  An acquaintance recommended/suggested PoF (I actually reencountered this acquaintance on OkCupid – having known this acquaintance from years ago, both before Facebook, and also a bit via Facebook).  So, PoF being one of the (at least potentially useful) “free” “dating” sites, and since I already had account on there, I figured I’d also hop back on there – but perhaps more so OkCupid, but in either case, both.  And why bother getting back on either of them at all?  Well, because I’ve been meeting quite absolutely no one … nobody at all.  Haven’t had a “date”, or even something like a casual (e.g. first) meeting approximating such since … geez, last year.  Haven’t even had a communication exchange possibly leading to such since last year – excepting one message I got on OkCupid, which I replied to, and never heard back (par for the course, rarely receive messages, and when I reply, about 90% of the time I never hear back – seems that’s generally the case for straight males on on-line “dating” sites).

Anyway, I figure nothin’s gonna happen, or at least that’s most likely the case, if I don’t even so much as try.  So figured I’d try … at least some wee bit.  Do not want it to be some huge resource/time burn/sink (as that tends to suck even lots more – especially with essentially zero results).  But I figure what the heck, maybe at least update/tweak/”complete” my profile some reasonable bit more.  And then?  And then maybe just friggin’ leave it – pretty much sit back and watch the mostly nothing that happens.  But hey, mostly nothing is a wee bit better than nothing.  And maybe too, chance to practice and exercise my writing and marketing skills a bit.  Okay, so my marketing skills pretty much suck, but … whatever.  Bit ‘o practice probably won’t kill me, anyway.

And so it goes.

Still need to find more effective ways to try.  This on-line dating stuff, at least for me, has mostly sucked quite highly – with negligible exception (far too much time/resource, far too little positive result).

I could use a marketing department

2013-04-01 04:04:21 PDT

So, came up in some recent communications.  E.g./notably relationship, and my quite(!) lack thereof.  I could certainly do with a marketing department.  I don’t “market” or (particularly or hardly at all) “promote” myself well at all – or more so, rather than poorly, I mostly just don’t – period.

So, doesn’t exactly serve my own best self-interest on the dating/relationship front (e.g. zero dates so far this year – not even anything close to a near miss yet).  Or does it?  Whole friggin’ lot of time, energy, attention, resources, poured into generally quite disappointing results – surely quite disappointing net results – tends to be pretty dang depressing after a while – not to mention all the resource burn for naught.

Very roughly paraphrasing (I’m not going to quote – don’t want to be too identifyable), other said to me I’m excellent, and if I believe in myself I’ll be self-promoting.  I guess that’s at least partly true.  Maybe I ought believe in myself more strongly?  Does seem to at least somewhat work.  A couple select “random” examples.  Quite accomplished in my career / job skills.  Last time I interviewed (okay, so I was not passionate about it), I didn’t even prep for the interview at all really (were it an opportunity I was quite excited about, I certainly would have preped at least some fair bit), I was relatively sought out (I didn’t work hard at all to turn up the opportunity), I found the interview quite easy for me (that’s been the case for about a decade or more now, with exceedingly rare exception) aced out the competition (beat all other interviewing candidates), they offered me the job.  Last interview before when I took job was fairly similar – hardest questions I found quite easy – Sr. person there interviewing me was so satisfied with how I answered, and the questions I asked about the question, said person was like, “I’m satisfied” – and we spent the remainder of the time casually talking about the work environment and company.  (Technically) two consecutive times before that there was no interview – my reputation preceded me, they wanted me, was just a matter of details such as when and compensation, then it was a done deal.  The one before that, “toughest” question (the “hard tough ‘killer’ question” they asked all their candidates) I found to be highly easy and I answered it exceedingly well (and their other questions were even easier than that).  Chronologically before that?  Interviewed, offered the job, interviewed, offered the job, tested – top score of about 25+ candidates, interviewed, offered job, interviewed, offered job, interviewed, offered job.  Okay, missing 2 minor exceptions among all those, but that’s been the typical pattern, anyway.  Uh, I said “one”? … well, one set, anyway.  Other example.  Relationships.  Okay, so maybe I highly lack at getting into them (or hell, even a date!), but for those very few that ever got so far as to actually know me rather to quite well, well, I’d say they’ve generally been quite to highly satisfied.  Haven’t had much in the way of significant complaints there (if there were even any that were that significant in the way of complaints?).  Not exactly a major self-marketing success there on the relationship front – but at least if/when I’ve made it fairly far along (e.g. person actually knows me rather to quite well), things generally seem to go dang well from there.  So I guess that sort’a kind’a counts as self-marketing.

So, I guess there’s some self-marketing that goes on that works at least fairly well.  But could work a lot better!  E.g. career stuff – I’ve probably, even for being quite “top of my game” and “top of the heap” at what I generally do – probably still have significantly undershot what I could be aiming for and doing (e.g. one knowledgeable friend thinks I ought to be making about thrice what I do by aiming somewhat higher and being a bit more flexible regarding some types of opportunities).  Likewise on the relationship front – or heck, geez, a mere date!  Okay, maybe I’m at least theoretically a bit envious of women that can, e.g. put their profile on OkCupid and be dating a different guy every week (’till they’re sick of it after a year or so … heck, don’t know that I’ve dated (or even met for a possible date!) 50 or more different women in my entire life let alone within a year’s time!).  Anyway, definitely room for optimization there.  But not about marketing ‘better’ or more.  About marketing smarter.  If it burns a whole lot of resource/time etc., with negligible to zero (or even negative!) results, then that is not useful or good investment of resource.  So, yeah, marketing – gotta do what works well – for me – and that’s probably not dating 50 different women in a year’s time – one excellent match and I could be well set … so, … should whittle that 49 others down to a much more manageable number?  Perhaps very much so.  Uhm, … not that I’ve got a 49 or 50 to whittle down from, but, at least theoretically, were there 49 queued up, I think I’d get pretty sick of poor fits long before I could make it through 50 of ’em.  Need a lot more to be at least reasonably in the ballpark – if not dang close.  Otherwise I’ll likely get pretty sick of it pretty quick (hypothetically speaking anyway – never exactly had that “problem” of that many women, that often).  Something to be said for efficiency, though, of not expending(/wasting) “too much” effort.  Last time around (at least thus far) looking for next career opportunity – did only a fairish job of updating my resume … but that was “good enough”.  After all, purpose of resume is to get interview – after that the resume isn’t all that important.  So, sure, resume could’ve been much better (and still could be) – but … was that important?  Could well be argued it wasn’t important.  Maybe similar on, e.g. OkCupid.  Maybe I ought not try – or try that much – there, or similar places.  Maybe try “too hard”, and all I find is really poor fits anyway?  I dunno.  So, … those that know me well generally tend to quite like me.  But exceedingly few ever know me well at all.  Hmmmm, how to bridge that gap?  And “marketing” doesn’t seem to be the answer for that, either.  Not only do I tend to relatively suck at marketing, and marketing of myself, but it’s relatively contrary to my nature.  Rather like me marketing me inherently projects something that’s not quite me – so “doomed” to not work so well, eh?

So, … how does one effectively market such a, uh, marketing-resistant product?  Surely must be some marketing experts that know the answer to that!  :-)  So, have a product (me), that many ‘consumers’ want (I’ll settle for one good one), but where most consumers don’t recognize that, and product, which, when most conventional marketing means are used (e.g. self-promotion), the marketing tends to not work or not work well?  Hmmmmm…. guerilla or viral marketing?  I dunno.

my blogging – why? What’s best – time, priorities, trade-offs, my writing …

2013-03-14 13:54:20 PDT

My blogging, “release”, sharing, writing, time, priorities.

like blogging, really quite do.  I get to write, and share.  And too, I get to be less redundant, as I can refer, or even link, back to what I wrote before.

All well and good?  The blogging that is?  Sort’a kind’a mostly … or at least approximately so(?).

Why, why do I like to and often quite enjoy blogging … even feel “compelled” to do so?  And is that a good thing, or … not so good, or some mix?

What about time and priorities, how much time ought (and/or ought not) I be putting into it?  Are there things I should be improving in/with it?  Like … optimizing nature and extent of time(/concern/thought) I put into it, or optimizing me out of it, and/or any and all influences and impacts I have on anyone (and “everyone”) else through my blogging, all for the greater good?  Yeah, a lot of “yes” answers there, but how exactly, and balanced how and to what extent with other relevant concerns?

Questioning is, comparatively, easy, answering, not necessarily so.  And coming to the correct answer or conclusion(s) can also, at least sometimes, be tricky, involved, or even quite complex.

Answers?  Well, thoughts at least.  And not in necessarily any particular order.

Why?  Why the blogging, what got me started, what keeps me going, what are my, at least main, motivations to blog?  It kind’a started as an outgrowth/extension of OkCupid, and my profile thereupon.  And also too, probably secondarily then – but probably primary now.  A place to express and be heard – maybe even potentially understood.  And perhaps even more critically – at least (far too) much of the time, a place, an “outlet” when I have no other, or nearly so.  Don’t have that relationship?  Check <cough> (buggers, but true).  What about close friend(s)?  Uhm, what about close friends I can really communicate well with – like sit down and have a long serious revealing conversation – where I’m comfortable with them, they supportive of me, well able to listen, and very capable and up to a lot of listening from me – at least a fair bit of the time or more-or-less when I “need” to?  Uhm, well, am very thankful for what I do have – have gained an excellent friend within the past year.  That’s good, … damned important even, and does help a lot.  But, said friend and I, being quite available to me to be able to sit down and have / listen to a long, and potentially rather/quite “deep” conversation like that?  Not gonna detail, but, not that I couldn’t, but it just ain’t gonna happen like that.  :-/  Nobody’s ‘fault’ at all, not in the least, just is how it is.  Analogies often suck, but, roughly – think of it like I wanna be able to do a firehose of communication.  Or, well, at least a full running garden hose.  Not like all the time, but at least fair bit of the time, or at least have that available/possible.  But, what can be done is more like moderate trickle.  Not to knock moderate trickle – as it does add up over time – even very substantially so.  But regardless, it is significantly limiting, and may always be the case there.  So, that still leaves me sort’a kind’a quite alone in a very substantial way.  And, for mostly lack of anywhere else, it gets “dumped”, spilled, revealed, exposed, shared – on blog.  Or really, more accurately, on blogs.  So, quite a bit goes “here”, this blog – “public”, but pseudo-anonymous.  So, I feel I can “reveal a lot” here, but too, there’s also lots I wouldn’t put here, or would be very anonymized/filtered in how I put it on here.  So, that’s a big chunk of “why” – a “release” – a way of communicating to someone(s) where that is or may be otherwise mostly or (almost?) entirely lacking.  Kind’a “it’s got no where else to go!”  Sad?  Maybe, but reality.  That’s not the only reason, but key among them.  Kind’a a “therapy”, “release”, sharing, rather/quite needed.  (Throw myself upon/at “the masses”?).  But there’s more to it than that.  Sometimes I just wanna share.  Good stuff, bad stuff, stuff I found interesting or observed, cool stuff, things of concern or interest to me, stuff I just feel like sharing – period.  Blogs?  Yes, more than one.  I’ve also much more highly restricted blog(s), which I use for communicating with/to or also with/to a very select set and number of persons, and much more privately and confidentially.  How many persons?  How close and well trusted, etc.?  Very to exceedingly close and well trusted?  How many?  Uh, think of it more like a theoretical set.  May be zero to, I think a theoretical max of about 3, in such set at any given point in time.  So, yeah, some separate private blog(s) for that, communicating to “them” and/or specific person(s) within.  So yeah, at least in (major? or at least significant) part, much of the blogging is that I don’t have that person I could simply talk with/to.  Haven’t really, in years or more now.  And, unfortunately, that’s been the case much more than not most of my (especially adult) life.  “Oh well” – is what it is.  Not like I’ve not tried to “fix” that.  Put a whole helluva lot of time and effort into that.  And, … well, … not all that much to show for it.  Friggin’ lonely planet of humans.  Billions of humans, and, well, way too many of ’em spending way to much of the time feeling (and “being”) that way.  And that sure as hell includes me – at least way too much of the time.  Okay, enough with the pity party cr*p – at least for now.  Even if I threw a pity party, likely nobody’d show up to it except me – hell, maybe even I wouldn’t bother to go to my own pity party – would be pretty sucky ‘party’ anyway, right?  Not that I ever was a ‘party animal’ or anything close, or even particularly keen on parties.  But, a pity party?  Bleh.

All well and good?  Time/priorities?  I think it’s mostly a good thing.  Sure, I’m human, I’m definitely not perfect – an intrinsic characteristic of being human, after all.  But, I think, not only does it generally help me, but more importantly, I think overall it’s a good thing.  Helps me.  Doesn’t really or particularly hurt anyone else (my blogging, that is), and (much?) more often than not helps (or at least entertains?) others, provides some “useful” – or at least (somewhat?) interesting stuff about me and/or other stuff, to read and consider, etc.  Not that it does all those things at once, or most commonly many or all – or even any of them.  But, on balance, probably (mostly?) a “good thing”.  And useful.  At least in parts.  And also thinking more generally too about the private blogging bits too.  Other(s), at least sometimes, find it quite useful/helpful – or even just informative and … illuminating?  Or something like that.  But, do still want to keep in mind, and pretty much at all times, whatever ‘flavor’ of blog, whenever, wherever, and to whatever audience – is it a good thing?  Am I doing it as I ought?  Yeah, sure, it won’t be perfect, definitely.  But on balance, a good thing?  And, any given bit I’m putting in, or thinking of putting in on blog, is or would that be a good thing?  Or ought I rather just leave it out – cover it elsewhere … somehow, sometime, if I ever get reasonably suitable and appropriate opportunity – just leave it off blog and “unsaid” until … well, … maybe forever.  And, … time/priorities.  Balance.  “Against” where/how I ought be spending my time, efforts, energies.  Is it the “right” balance?  More?  Less?  And/or … quite depends upon circumstances and timing?  I’m really not all that sure about that – particularly attempting to answer the “how much”, and what’s best/optimal in that regard.  So yeah, certainly at least at times – and given circumstances (notably lack of most any other “outlet”), I feel pretty darn … compelled to blog.  It even feels good – sometimes even damn good (hmm, conflict of interest or potential thereof?).  Yet, too, it’s hard.  Hard to “dump” / write out – especially the rather to quite personal.  Even harder doing it “out there to the world” – where I don’t even know who’s going to read it.  And, at least sometimes, quite harder too, on private blog – trying to determine what to “say”, reveal, ask, comment upon, etc. – and how – and “vs.” just letting it go or not touching upon it at all.

Time/priorities & my writing.  And my writing does kind’a rather suck.  I get that feedback, well, … uh, at least semi-regularly.  It tends to be, approximately, stream of consciousness.  Not exactly, but semi-close.  Usually things I’ve at least thought of writing about ahead of time, but typically haven’t “fully” formed in my head.  And often, as I write it, I’ll find it takes somewhat to quite different twists and turns.  Not uncommon that I find, as I write it, that what I really wanted to say – or “needed” to, was something a fair bit different than what I thought when I’d, typically, very roughly outlined in my head what I wanted to “say”/address.  And, it takes me too damn long!  The writing takes me quite a while – too long, to actually “crank” out and turn into a blog posting – likewise with most any of my longer writing (heck, even often with my shorter or even much shorter writing!).  Yeah, the idea(s) in head to typing it “all” out, that goes fairly fast.  Not nearly as fast as I could rattle it off my tongue had I someone to actually sit and tell it to.  But, at least roughly, we’re talking same order of magnitude.  So, not nearly as fast and efficient as talking, but, well, still at least not absurdly slow, “costly”, and inefficient.  But, … that’s mostly just the first rough pass.  Sort’a like a “first draft” – but not even up to that level of, uh, <cough> quality.  And then, I reread, and edit – fixing, adding, reading and tripping over my own writing (WTF did I write?  Let me attempt to read that sentence again and make sense of it.  Oh.  Yeah, that’s cr*p – need to rewrite it so it can be reasonably parsed and comprehended).  And of course, almost inevitably, it tends to grow longer and larger as I do so.  Not entirely a bad thing.  Often there are additional things/points I want to cover, further clarify, add, etc., so, that’s – in many regards, at least “okay”.  But, the overall bulk … not so good.  And the (dis)”organization” – uh, yeah, that leaves a lot to be desired.  A whole helluva lot.  Oddly, or perhaps at least somewhat surprisingly to me, some folks quite like my writing style – but I think, at least statistically, they’re quite the minority.  Most, … I dunno, don’t have the patience to wade through it all?  Not like I ought to expect most to have the level of time and attention needed to wade through it all and make (reasonable) sense of whatever I’d typically written.  So, yeah, multiple passes of rereading and editing and tweaking – takes much more time on my part – like increases the amount of time I end up putting into it by roughly about a factor of three.  And, unfortunately, for that 3x investment of time and energy, it doesn’t end up a whole helluva lot better than what I first typed out.  :-/  Mostly just spello/typo/braino fixes, edit fixes to make some bits less than hopelessly unparseable and way confusingly (typically run-on or poorly or improperly punctuated) horribly written.  So, yeah, 3x, and it doesn’t get all that much better.  And, going from (theoretical, at least) spoken, to (first) written, to even still rather crudely “edited” “final” writing/posting – adding that extra 3x in there, it’s then way hella lot less efficient and much much more time consuming than just having a conversation – or heck, even delivering an ad hoc speech.  I suppose, at least “public” (pseudo-anonymous) blog does, though, have the (relative) advantage of “reaching” – or at least potentially so – a lot more people.  And, on-line and all, can be linked, searched out, found/read (much) later, (re)discovered, etc.  So, it has those advantages too.

Opportunity?  Yeah, my writing sort’a kind’a mostly more-or-less sucks.  Once upon a time it was better (well, not in all regards, but many key regards) – certainly more efficient, both on my time, and that of any reader or potential reader.  So, maybe I ought look on it as an opportunity to also improve my writing – and efficiency thereof (both for myself, and those reading my writing).  I don’t know, though, sometimes I think it’s a (relatively) lost cause.  “You got it or you don’t.”  Like, I’ve darn near zero artistic talent.  I don’t think practice is the kind of thing that would (significantly) improve that.  Sometimes – often? – I think(/fear) similarly of my writing.  Geez, I’m already past 50.  In my lifetime I have written quite a bit – certainly at least in total, and in various forms.  Yeah, sure, some of it does improve – at least some modest bits over time.  But, really?  Sure there’s lots of room for improvement.  But will I, or will I even be able to improve my writing all that much?  Paint me skeptical.  Though, I ought at least try.  “Do or do not.  There is no try.” – Yoda.  Well, I think that’s a kind’a sucky quote, but there certainly is a point to it.  And, on the positive side, there are some things I can do to improve my writing, uh, “style” <cough, cough>.  So, yeah, probably best I keep those things in mind, and continue to work on ’em, … at least as feasible.  And, along with whole lot ‘o other stuff I best at least generally keep in mind.  All quite a balancing act – decisions, trade-offs, time, priorities, various and numerous considerations, and what is best – overall?

Resolution(s) – time to spare along the way

2013-01-17 12:13:43 PDT

So, I earlier mentioned bit of my view on resolutions, namely “I always figure if one ought to make a resolution” … “no time like the present.”

So, that time comes.  No, not New Year’s.  Been thinking about it a while.  But not (yet) sure precisely – or even particularly – how to proceed, and probably more notably optimize, or at least approximately optimize.

First a bit of relevant background on the specific what.

don’t like to arrive late.  I’m rarely late.  And even when I am “late”, it’s typically quite slightly so (e.g. less than two minutes – e.g. I was 6 seconds late yesterday … or so I thought … just checked my watch – it’s about 16 seconds fast at present (and drifts very slowly and predictably) – so I actually wasn’t late), and I’m often still first and almost always still well ahead of the majority of folks.  And why do I generally bother to do that?  Mostly out of respect for other people’s time.  I consider their time valuable and a limited resource, so I wish to not only avoid wasting it, but also to be respectful of it, and to reasonably show that respect.  I also hope/wish others would do likewise, but I’m not others.  And I also try to avoid arriving (“too”) early – as that tends to be inconvenient and/or impolite for folks.

I also like to avoid wasting my time.

I also like to get reasonable amount of exercise, especially when/where/how I can work it in (e.g. as part of more-or-less what I’d be doing anyway, rather than exercise “just” for the purpose of exercise – e.g. don’t take the dang escalators, walk up the over 100 steps up the stairs – and take ’em two at a time … and get there faster than most taking the escalators – even most of those walking up the escalators – and better for the environment too – how many folks really need those escalators vs. the resources used to transport so many of them via escalator).

So, combining the above, I very commonly tend to – and have so for years – cut my timing short, but with a slight bit to spare, and walk rather to quite briskly as, or as part of, getting me to where I need/want to be, and when I’m supposed to be there.  In and of itself, that works rather to quite “fine”.  I get there – wherever – on time – typically a wee bit early, but not too early … or if it turns out it would be “too early”, I “fill some time” at or close to my destination.  But the rest of the travel (typically public transportation and walking) tends to be brisk walking and rather tightly timed transit connections.  Basically, most of the time, there’s little “slop” in my schedule of me getting from point A to point B – most notably when I’m supposed to be at point B at some particular time.  That’s also relatively efficient use of my time (not much wasted), typically gets in at lest some exercise for me (e.g. also often stand on train/bus, even if/when seats are available).  And I also generally don’t walk (or bicycle, etc.) so fast/hard that I arrive all hot and sweaty or anything like that – typically a bit warm, but not overheated.  I also tend to travel highly legally (e.g. generally not committing any violations/infractions of pedestrian/bicycling/driving laws) – not only as matter of general safety, but, similarly, out of respect for the law, social “norms”/expectations, etc.  Again, I can’t control others, but I generally can control myself.

So, all well and good, except … it has one major – or at least quite significant shortcoming, and I’ve noticed it more and more over time.  It doesn’t have that extra (or hardly any) “slop” or general flexibility in the schedule.  Not an issue itself, but has a major consequence of concern to me, and this is the thing I notice.  Along the way, an encounter, opportunity for interaction, conversation, stop a bit to do/see something, help out, etc. – the schedule really just doesn’t allow for that flexibility.  So, I find myself, in many cases, where I might otherwise quite be inclined to stop or slow down, or interact, or interact more, or do something or take some particular actions – or at least be able to or offer to – I don’t, because “I don’t have the time” – because I didn’t work it into my point A to point B by time T schedule.

So, I’m not sure exactly how to best address and “fix” this.  I want to have the time/flexibility there (along the way), but I also don’t want to “waste” time (mine, nor certainly anybody else’s) along the way, or by arriving late.  It’s also a bit more complex with, e.g. public transportation involved – which is often the case for many of my travels.  Trains, busses, etc., often only depart at certain times, and with certain frequency.  There may be different/alternative itineraries that would all still get me there on time, but often it’s not as simple as the next bus/train of same route.  Often there may be two or three – or even more,routes/connections, sets of transfers, etc., to take, that are most efficient – or even the only ones feasible, to get me to point B at time T, depending particularly when I depart point A, or if I take some extra time somewhere along the way.  Not to make excuses, but, it can be at least a bit complex.  There’s also the matter of most usefully using the “extra time”.  If I add some certain amount (or percentage or whatever) of “slop” into the schedule, and “nothing” of (particular) interest/note happens along the way, I arrive with that “slop” of time remaining.  So how do I well use it at (or very near to) destination – where destination may be somewhat arbitrary (though some destinations are much more common for me, than others)?

Anyway, still trying to figure out how to best “resolve” that.  If I could figure out how to use the “slop” time as, or nearly as efficiently, as I’d otherwise be using same time it would typically take away from time at point A, then it becomes pretty much a non-issue.  Really not sure, though, how I can use time e.g. on bus, train, or walking, as well/efficiently/”productively” as I often or typically would at, e.g. home.  But maybe that doesn’t matter – or matter that much.  It’s really more a moral/ethical “decision”/dilemma – better being able to have time available, and well use it, in transit or along the way, “vs.” using similar time at, e.g. home.  There’s also, similar, related, but lesser concern – communication, social interaction, etc. – much more opportunities there if there’s that “slop” in the schedule, whereas they’re significantly reduced on the much tighter transit schedule.  Could also break the “problem” down a bit further.  The transit times on public transit – e.g. bus/train, are comparatively more “fixed” – typically same transit time, between two intermediary points along the way.  Short of different/alternative routes/connections, or getting off along the way somewhere where I otherwise typically wouldn’t, those times are relatively “fixed” and more predictable.  The part that’s more variable, and where the “slop” factors is more applicable, is the walking (or bicycling) bits.  Perhaps I “just” need to figure out how to add “slop” there and well utilize that time.  Ethical dilemma – and probabilities.  Much is chance.  Not sure there’s any simple way – if at all, to best optimize it – not particularly quantifiable – other than the time itself.  So, difficult to estimate, or even guess, what would be best overall – let alone be anywhere close to knowing what would be best.

Anyway, at least very much seems I should have/work a bit more “slop” into my transit schedules – for “whatever” might come up, or opportunities that may present themselves.  So, be it resolved that … yeah, I don’t know exactly what, … yet.  Maybe I never will.  In any case, something definitely to be paid more attention to, and adjusted as relevant and appropriate.  Also, since I’ve been doing much of this point A to point B by time T rather briskly and with negligible slop in schedule, it’s relatively habitual, so will take some adjustments and work to “tweak” it.  And again, not sure how to “measure” it.  Perhaps mostly just guestimate and go by “feel” – somewhere along the way it ought to feel like that’s about as well optimized as that can be or get, and, … well, that’s probably, if not actually optimal, probably at least “close enough”, within the feasible limits of attempting to well estimate such.

“suddenly” busy … and … getting back to “normal”

2012-02-11 19:34:49 PDT

And then, suddenly, life gets “real busy” for a while. So, … stuff happens, … sometimes rather to quite unexpectedly. “Don’t you hate it when” … well, not necessarily/exactly, but …

Anyway, sometimes rather to quite annoying – sometimes frustrating too, … something happens – whatever, and then suddenly one has to take a lot of time – often crammed into short(ish) span of time – working on or dealing with … *whatever*, … stuff happens, stuff comes up, things happen with people, whatever. I don’t know, … I guess I sometimes find it rather to quite annoying, … certainly at least inconvenient, … unavoidable? Yes, and no, … varies – sometimes “impossible” to infeasible to avoid, … in other cases, it’s effectively a “choice”, though not necessarily all that much of a choice to be made, … but I suppose in a lot of cases, almost always remain some choice(s) to be made – e.g. how involved, how to balance / trade off resources on putting how much time/resource on/to whatever, vs. less time/resources to other things one wants (and/or “needs”) to also be doing. Time and resources (well, time *is* also a resource) are not limitless … so, only so much to go around. So, … how much when, where, to what, on/about what, and why? … and particularly when it’s “crunch” time – anticipated, or not.

(semi-)random examples, … and not necessarily with/for/about me, just thinking (also) generally, e.g. … car seriously breaks down or is involved in significant/major accident, significant/major problem with home/residence, serious problem comes up with one’s child, loss of job and quite needing to get back to work, change of job/employment, needing to move and moving – especially quite unexpectedly, loved one, family member, close friend, etc. becomes seriously/gravely ill, injured, or has some significant/major crisis calling for quite a bit of attention/support/interaction/whatever, wallet/purse or the like is lost, or stolen, or robbed at gunpoint or mugged or whatever. Unique – even very good and unexpected – opportunity suddenly and unexpectedly comes up – but requires a lot of time/work/preparation, etc., etc. Not all “bad” stuff, but, well, perhaps you at least get the general idea.

Anyway, so, as I was just about starting to “recover” from "the holidays" … okay, not even *quite* done with ’em … but close, … had another one of those “random” and (mostly) unexpected things come up, … one that would suck up a bunch of my time (and energy and attention, at least for a while) in January. Ugh, … not what I was hoping for at all, coming off of “the holidays” … was mostly looking forward to things being much more back to “normal”, and “catching up” from the busyness after “the holidays” … mostly wanting to have some more time to relax, or whatever, … and also catch up on things I’d wanted to do in December, but didn’t have the time for, so had deferred. Well, not so quickly back to (more) “normal” … had one of those semi-random things come up … not entirely unanticipated, but, well, not exactly anticipated or expected to land in January … but happened anyway.

So, … anyway, that (mostly) was then … significantly busier (and fair bit more stressful) January than expected. Bah. “Oh well”. Stuff happens. Things are getting back closer to “normal” again now … which is (generally) good. :-) So, yeah, … hadn’t, e.g., spent nearly as much time on / pursuing stuff with, OkCupid, etc., or doing much of a bunch of other stuff I wanted to do, or get more caught up on (e.g. setting up more stuff on new laptop, various other activities/projects I wanted to work on, etc.) as I’d wanted to. Oh well, at least nothing all that bad or that’s gonna kill me or anything like that, … but still quite inconvenient and annoying – particularly on the timing, … not that I had any control over that.

So, … that was “then” … things are closer to being back to “normal” now … “finally”. And, yep, choices … maybe not so much directly, but at least indirectly. We do often quite chose our situations/circumstances, … at least to a fair degree, do also rather effectively mostly chose what’s important to us – and what’s not … and often much of what we do/don’t “have” to deal with, is consequence of earlier choices, … but still, much of it is rather to quite random nevertheless. “Stuff happens.” – ‘Tis life.