Showing Up is Over Half the Battle

Show up for your appointments

When we moved into our current home, over twenty years ago, we elected to enlist a service to mow our lawn and do some other basic maintenance on the large yard. We went through several services before finding one we would stick with for many years.

The most common cause of failure was actually very disappointing. While we expected the quality of the work to be the determining factor, it was something else entirely that had us more often than not looking for a new provider.

We ended up making our evaluation on what seemed the simplest of things: did they even show up regularly, as promised, to do the job?

Too many times the answer was “no”.

Read moreShowing Up is Over Half the Battle

The Insidious Bubble

I was talking to a friend yesterday about our meditation practices. The observation we both made was that meditation, mindfulness, and related concepts were becoming more and more mainstream. What was once considered a fringe and somewhat “woo” activity had made its way into common discussions around everything from personal performance, to medical and mental health discussions.

But on one observation we differed in an interesting way.

Read moreThe Insidious Bubble

The Mug

It’s funny how we assign meaning and even sentimentality to inanimate objects.

Consider the mug accompanying this article: it’s actually quite meaningful to me. So much so that at one point I actually stopped using it for fear of breaking it. As a result, I never saw it and it remained in a relatively obscure location.

Last year I came to the conclusion that that was kinda silly, and placed it back into service.

This morning I realized that it’s not just the mug we set aside for some odd perception of safety and desired permanence.

Read moreThe Mug

Truth, Facts and Opinions

Sheldon: But evolution is not opinion, it’s a fact.

Sheldon’s mom: And that is your opinion.

– Big Bang Theory

Nothing sums up the current political environment to me more than that quote.

I think everyone would agree that facts are facts. They are invariant, objective  laws of the universe, subject to scrutiny and unchanging based on who’s doing the scrutinizing.

Until, it appears, you happen to disagree with a fact.

Read moreTruth, Facts and Opinions

Providence Marianwood – Family Story and Ask

[I was asked once again to speak at the spring luncheon for
Providence Marianwood, the long term care facility
at which my father lived for his last 4.5 years. The keynote speaker
for the luncheon was Robert Fulghum. I was also preceded by Gene Muren, whose
wife Debra is a resident of the same wing that my father had been on,
and who suffers from early-onset Alzheimer’s. Debra was diagnosed at
the age of 46.
]

I want to thank Gene as well for sharing his poem and story. Debra’s
a familiar face to those of us who’ve spent any time in the Alzheimer’s
wing. I also have to echo Gene’s characterization of the experience as
both educational, and humbling.

Read moreProvidence Marianwood – Family Story and Ask

New unit of measurement: The Bible?

The Bible turns out to be a handy unit of measurement,
particularly when you’re trying to help folks some grasp
large storage media or data transfer rates.

It doesn’t matter whether you believe in what’s in it, of
course, it’s just that most folks have seen one. I’d wager
that most folks have a reasonable concept of its size, even
if only in heft or “thud factor”.

I used it as an example way back when as I tried to convey
some concepts to my parents. This disk? It could hold X
bibles! And this connection here, we can send the entire
Bible
in Y seconds! Wow!

A random copy of The Bible, text only, from project
Gutenberg (http://www.gutenberg.org) “weighs in” at roughly
5 megabytes.

With that as a unit of measure:

Read moreNew unit of measurement: The Bible?

Seattle has no full time news radio station.

Yes, yes, I know that the two heavyweights in the Seattle
marker, KIRO 710 and KOMO 1000 both claim to be news
stations. And yet…

KIRO changed branding some time ago from “News Radio” to
“News Talk” to finally reflect more accurately what they
really broadcast: News and Talk. More of the later than the
former, I’m afraid. Fair enough, at least they’re honest
about it. (And I’m a fan of the talk part … if
that’s what I happen to be looking for.)

The real offender, in my mind, is KOMO.

Read moreSeattle has no full time news radio station.

The One Big Thing – In Your Way?

I was having a conversation with a friend the other day about what was
coming next for her web site. She has a new site design. The design itself is
ready to go, and I’d say that the “important stuff” has been moved into it, but
not everything. A bunch of older content hasn’t yet been moved. On top of that
the older content needs updating as it’s moved into the new design.

So she’s been waiting to release the new website design until more (all?) of
the old content has been revised and moved. And of course, that’s just an
overwhelming amount of work – all those pages. It’s a big deal.

So naturally, since it’s such a daunting task, it’s not happening. Smile

My response? Just do it.

No, not the old content migration. That is an overwhelming
task.

Read moreThe One Big Thing – In Your Way?

DirecTV Take 1. Take 2. Take …

As I mentioned elsewhere,
my 11 year old big screen TV decided it was tired, and wasn’t going work
any more. That, of course, accelerated my HDTV education and upgrade
timetable.

My replacement HDTV is on
order.

But as I mentioned to Kathy, this is a slippery slope. Programming.
Audio. Recording. Etc.

And so I found myself on the phone to DirecTV to upgrade our programming
to their HDTV package with their HDTV DVR. No problem, they said. They’d
be happy to take more of my money. No surprise really.

We scheduled an appointment for the upgrade, which includes a new
(bigger) dish and the DVR. I made note to the representative to make sure
to mention that a 30 foot ladder was going to be required, as the
existing dish was at the peak of one end of our house. No problem, they
said.

And here the enumeration begins by visit and technician contact… (you
know it’s bad when a numbered list is the right approach)

Read moreDirecTV Take 1. Take 2. Take …

Finished: Fahrenheit 451

Fahrenheit 451

Fahrenheit 451 is one of those books I thought I’d read. I’m a Sci-Fi fan,
and ate up a lot of the “masters” of Sci-Fi years ago. I started with Arthur C.
Clarke (Childhood’s End was
my first Sci-Fi read, what a way to start!), and quickly ran through most of
the works of Heinlein, Asimov, and others, including, I thought, Ray
Bradbury.

Apparently not.

My only thought is that perhaps I got sidetracked by the weirdness that is
Something Wicked
This Way Comes, and set Mr. Bradbury aside.

Fast forward some [mumble] years, and I find a reference to
Fahrenheit
451 in the always popular and thought provoking This Is True weekly email.

Read moreFinished: Fahrenheit 451