December 28th, 2010

sudden growth of hair on hobbit feet

End of the Year: Deep Breath Time

The year's wrapping up, and it's time for some retrospective navel-gazing. I think I've chased off everybody who's seriously turned off by that already.

I've been pondering job stuff constantly, and will again, but let's take a detour into kid-land (my other obsession) for awhile first, hey?


Shanna went from 1 1/2 to 2 1/2, and is now well into the "terrible twos" and short-person-hood. She's kind and vulnerable, self-centered and demanding, clever and occasionally quite funny. She continues to speak at a level years ahead of her chronological age, and remains smart but still two. That is, she's not terribly dedicated or studious, which I say partly because I spend, like, zero time with other people's two-year-olds. For her age, she does well. She remains an awesome person, and she remains frustrating for thoroughly age-appropriate reasons and because she's a tremendous extrovert with an unlimited appetite for attention. Good signs, really.

Calli is fabulous and wonderful. To the extent you can tell anything about a four-month-old (you can't), she seems calm, contemplative and introverted. She doesn't need as much touch or attention as Shanna did, and stares, fascinated at all kinds of visual phenomena (which never much interested Shanna) and sometimes people (which did). She loves Shanna and watches her intently. Obviously she has demands for maintenance and attention as well. She *is* an infant. But she seems *very* low-maintenance and calm, given that.

The two of them get along very well -- Shanna's a little rough, being two, which Calli puts up with remarkably well. But not as rough as you'd expect. And she's very affectionate. The girls are mutually good at not getting too worked up with the other getting upset, and playing or sleeping well when the other is unavailable.

It's too early to tell for sure (ask me again in about 14 months), but so far things are going very well with two kids. And I continue to be glad we're not doing this for an extra few years (i.e. adding a kid). So far it looks like we've utterly lucked out twice in a row, both for the quality of our kids and how well they fit with each other and with us. I don't need to keep spinning the roulette wheel :-)
Right.  Only now I get paid for it.

2010 Summary: Computer Programming Edition

While I'm noodling about 2010 in review...

I've worked for On-Site for all of 2010. Given my gypsy-ish tendencies with jobs, that's nice. They continue to like me, and modulo the usual ups and downs, I continue to like them. I wanted to go work in Rails professionally until I was sure I was good at it (check), learn some areas of web development I was weaker at (check) and work somewhere stable while we were having small children (check). On-Site has a good scorecard with me.

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it's the monkey in the pants

Early Brezsny

To the Gemini, Brezsny says:

Can you finally escape the pain you got imprinted with during adolescence? Is it a realistic possibility that you could triumph over the conditioning you absorbed before you knew how to talk? Do you have the power to do what few of us have done, which is to get out from under the weight of the past, shed the inertia of your memories, and live brave and free in the raw truth of NOW? If there will ever in your life be a time when you can accomplish at least some of this noble quest, Gemini, it will be in 2011.

Hrm. Not sure what imprinting I'm struggling under, though I certainly believe there could be some. I'm certainly being a very different father than the parents who raised me. Better? Hard to say. But different, and I think uninhibited about being so. Still, let's look for clearer instructions for my moon sign, Leo, shall we?

Fixing people's teeth is one of Dr. Peter Kertesz's specialties. The British dentist has a thriving business in London. Now and then he's also called on to practice an exotic variation: animal dentistry. Recently, he corrected the tooth problems of two tigers in a zoo. Other species he has helped include elephants, whales, and pandas. In 2011, Leo, I suggest you consider branching out like Dr. Kertesz. What would be the equivalent, in your domain, of expanding the ways you use your primary skills?

Well, I planned just before this horoscope came out to go and build simple, sellable products. Given that my primary skills are in systems programming, big web app development and various stuff like multimedia, mobile and embedded devices... Sure, many product possibilities could be the equivalent of animal dentristry :-) Still not quite sure what I'll be doing, of course, but brainstorming is fun.