Wednesday Wandering Mind – My Like, Dislike, Will, Won’t Thoughts on Random Topics

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After a couple of heavy posts Monday and Tuesday, I wanted to lighten things up. It seems that my ‘Thinking Out Loud’ posts have gotten fairly verbose rather than stream of consciousness … so this week I just chose a bunch of topics and am going to blast out quick thoughts, no more than a sentence. Let’s see how it goes!

Food
– I have been totally in love with pears lately.
– Ditto for pistachios
– I will eat the same thing every day without issue.
– I could never be vegan, mainly due to yogurt and ice cream.
– I could be 95% vegetarian, but would want steak once every couple of months.
– We have trimmed starchy carbs very much with Lisa’s Paleo diet plan
– In fact, we have them so infrequently that the mashed potatoes last night felt like lead in my stomach.
– Clams are the one food I cannot tolerate, which I learned one year at the Chowda-Fest in Boston
– There are not many foods I dislike, and I love spicy foods – probably my least favorite thing is salty foods
– When it comes to cake I prefer the frosting to the cake … but it is easy for me to overload on the sweetness of buttercream
– My lenten goal of limiting traditional desserts is going OK so far – I had 3 rather than 2 in the past week. The fruit alternative is wonderful … but then I felt like baking …
– Aside from the taste there is nothing that makes me want to eat pizza anymore … and lately the taste just isn’t enough.
– My family had no problem with ‘meatless Monday’, but last December when I tried a meat-free week … the legumes and other components just got to be too much and they rebelled! πŸ™‚

Cars & Driving
– There is not one day that I miss the 35-mile commute from Townsend to Marlboro
– My current commute is about 5 miles, and I would gladly run/bike if I didn’t have to travel to other facilities on a semi-regular basis … oh, and if there were showers at my facility.
– In warm weather I enjoy ‘hyper-miling’ with my Escape Hybrid, seeing how far I can get without the gas engine engaging.
– I really have no desire to drive super-fast or own an expensive car.
– I always used to have one of those pine-tree car scented things but stopped because they tweaked Lisa’s allergies.

Music
– In college I used to head to the music wing (West Hall) at RPI and play the pianos at any hour as a very relaxing de-stressor.
– The MIDI lab was one of the pioneering digital media centers, and really grabbed my interest in MIDI recording
– I can still hop into the Performer music program even though it is the least intuitive thing around compared to newer software.
– Even though I play it less than the guitar or keyboards, bass will always be my ‘home’ instrument
– I will find something to like in any rhythmic-based, instrumental-centric music, regardless of genre.
– Likewise, I have little use for music where the emphasis is on the words and singing … which is why in spite of loving jazz, I have no use for most vocal jazz.
– I still have most of the music studio from 25 years ago, in excellent condition.
– The Roland Juno 106 analog synth I sold for a couple hundred $ back then could now pull >$1000
– In contrast, the 24-voice multi-timbral Roland JV-880 digital synth I bought then for much more and updated and upgraded … is now worth about $150.
– Both had similar MSRP … the lesson? Analog is back!

My Internet History
– I got a personal internet account before there was ‘the web’ … at that point there were 1200bps modems, email, USENET, and not much else.
– I tried AOL for a bit, and also Apple’s eWorld and Compuserve. Always went back to ‘MassInternet’, an early provider.
– I always loved USENET, and that kept me from really engaging in the web-based discussion forums that started to spring up in the mid-90s.
– I am still active on some web forums that I’ve been part of for nearly 20 years – it is amazing to see how people have grown through those years.

Marriage & Kids
– Anyone who says marriage is easy is lying
– Anyone who says they don’t fight is either lying or doomed.
– Marrying Lisa is the best thing in my life …
– The boys are the second best.
– My boys are my greatest joy, worry, frustration, fear, pride, and hope
– It is ALL a lot of work … some days it FEELS like work, other days you don’t even notice
– It is all worth it … I revel in the past and look forward to the future,.

Blogging – Yours
– I feel like every day I add at least one new blog
– At this point I won’t add a blog unless I see an article of interest on the first page.
– It is definitely a struggle keeping up with reading all of the great blogs I follow!
– I find new blogs more often than not through comments on my current blogs.
– I will not comment to be ‘first’, or in hopes of gaining clicks over to my blog
– I have unfollowed some blogs based on issues with citing sources, copycat blogging (that Arman covered so well recently), content-lite sponsored ‘reviews’ and so on.
– As I spread out more and more, I find myself asking ‘exactly WHY did you post this?’ more often than I care to admit.

Blogging – Mine
– I set up blogging accounts on Blogspot (Blogger) as soon as it was open to the public, which was somewhere in the mid 2000s
– For a while I would write posts as an outlet for when I was just doing gaming reviews, but there was never the time or drive to really keep up with things.
– For a while I was able to work some of my running stuff in with other blogs, but it was never personal
– Tomorrow (the 13th or March) is my 6-month anniversary of this blog.

Video Games
– My first non-arcade video game love was 1981’s ‘Castle Wolfenstein’ on the Apple ][+ (hot tech of 1979)!
– I have always loved playing games, and still do.
– My favorite genres are RPG and FPS
– My parents bought me a Game Boy when it first came out for work travel.
– I really got into playing computer games heavily in the late 90s
– At my peak, I did more than 225 game reviews in a single year.
– At this point, I would be happy doing a couple a year.
– In general I would rather casually replay an old favorite than play new games.

Work
– Corning is a great company to work for in many ways
– I think in numbers, graphs and equations
– I interface naturally and easily with machines amd equipment
– Taking AP English in high school meant not taking any typical humanities at all in college.
– Writing reviews and having actual editors has helped me considerably through the years
– Taking Six Sigma training (as a statistician) did nothing for me technically, but helped my presentation and ‘elevator speech’ skills
– At my last job I really should have left in 2004, but stayed through 2007.
– My favorite project technically at Corning was the one that deserved most to be killed … and was.
– I have made a few good friends here, and still have contact with people from earlier jobs through Facebook.

Social Media
– I love Facebook within the context I use it – friends new and old, family, colleagues, and a few groups.
– Twitter I ‘get’, but cannot align its flow to my style.
– I’ve had an Instagram account since forever, but only in the last year really done anything with it.
– I have a Tumblr … really no clue. I just know my posts go there, and my younger son totally gets it.
– As I said before, I have a Pinterest with boards and pins … and I just don’t get it.
– I still love traditional web based discussions because they can be so democratic and provide great social interaction.

iPad as Computer
– The iPad is my ‘90% computer’, and goes with me everywhere.
– Recent articles continue to call tablets ‘neither mobile nor productive’ enough – I disagree.
– I use it for email, web, Feedly (actually Mr Reader), blogging, statistical analysis, social media, games, and making music
– I have the Belkin Ultimate keyboard case. It acts as a stand and has a fantastic keyboard.

Running
– There are few things worse than bleeding nipples.
– Well, maybe getting into the shower before realizing how bad they are.
– Actually, chafing from running in general is pretty lousy.
– I AM a runner.
– I love being outside with nature in the morning.
– I will run in pretty much any weather, down to below -20F this year
– However, I will NOT run if conditions are too icy or there is active lightning.
– I have not decided what I will do for training plans this year.

The image at top is from this morning, right before the latest snowstorm came rolling through …it is the last morning this work for at least the next 10 days. Hopefully not much longer until spring arrives for real!

Thinking-Out-Loud

And again this week I am linking up with Amanda at Running With Spoons!

And that is all for now … what is wandering through YOUR mind this Wednesday?!?

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24 thoughts on “Wednesday Wandering Mind – My Like, Dislike, Will, Won’t Thoughts on Random Topics

  1. I am going to have to check out that iPad case you mentioned. I have a desktop at home (makes more sense for my work because bigger screen), but I use the iPad a lot when I’m just sitting on the couch and I don’t have a keyboard for it. It would be so much easier to keep up with blogs if I had one!

    I could eat the same thing every day too. And I often do. It works out well since my daughter is so picky right now and will only eat like 5 things.

    I’ve never tried Tumblr. I guess I don’t really get it either.

    • I really love the Belkin case. I have been all-laptop since ~1997 (and mostly laptop since ~’91), so portability has always been assumed.

      I think most kids go through periods where they eat more or less … then again, some never broaden and some have allergies that express themselves as ‘picky’. Hard to tell at that age πŸ™‚

  2. One of the best things about my office is its proximity to my house (3.75 miles each way on foot, slightly more if I drive since on foot has me cut through a university campus), and the presence of showers at work. My old office was a couple miles further and did not have showers, but I was still able to bike occasionally — slowly when it wasn’t summer — and then change into work clothes, but I’ve never biked to my current office, just so much more fun to run.

    • I would really love to do that … and totally would if I could get cleaned up there somewhere. The facility is one where Corning used to make lab glass (flasks, beakers, etc) for ages, but has been converted into an ‘innovation support center’, basically between R&D and Engineering … but there are still many parts of the building that feel 50 years old.

  3. Haha I agree with so many of your points here!

    -I could never be vegan either because of ice cream….it just wouldn’t work.
    -I really should start trying to meatless monday’s as a challenge. I think it sounds fun!
    -Wes loves spicy foods, me not so much but I usually make two versions so we can both enjoy!
    -Marriage is HARD…I agree that if anyone says it isn’t they are lying and EVERY couple argues. If you don’t, well then there are much deeper problems. Arguments are just part of committing your life to someone. Hands down though it was the best decision I ever made as well. I really love hearing your truthfulness about marriage!
    -My husband would 100% agree with you the bleeding nipples part.

    Happy 6 month “blog-iversary” πŸ™‚

  4. I agree keeping up with blogs is challenging! I am finally getting a chance to read some today, after a busy past week! I don’t know how you juggle running so often, a job, a family, and keeping up with posting almost daily…. any tips?!?!?!

  5. I’m wondering if I’ll find a job after I get my phd. Wondering why space heaters are against city code. Wondering if it is normal to gain weight when training for an ultra marathon. Thinking about how I can get on the Amazing Race with my sister.

    Oh, and thinking about how much I need to do tomorrow, but that taking a break tonight will only make me more productive tomorrow. I hope.

    • haha … love the random thoughts! I remember back when space heaters became popular there used to be all sorts of firesfrom them … I know most dorm-type places don’t allow them for that reason.

      As for the job thing … that is why we tell our kids to chase their passion not a job – there are no guaranteed jobs anymore.

      Hope you ended up with a productive day!

  6. I can’t eat enough pears lately either. Pears and oranges for some reason. We just recently bought an iPad and I wish we hadn’t waited so long. I won’t run on ice, with lightning and just recently I stopped running in the dark alone.

    • Thanks for the comment! I think that pears and oranges are such great hydration sources, and winter gets so dry that it might be a hydration signal. So what are you loving about the iPad so far? … and I have to say that it really saddens me that not running in the dark alone is probably a good idea. 😦

  7. Hmm…You and I are so similar in some ways and yet really different in others. A few examples:

    Food: I’d live on pizza if feasible. (And except for it not going well with my addiction to hot sauce.). But mostly sugar items like frosting, completely disgusting.
    Cars: Could essentially do without at this point, except road trips and kid transport, so with ya there.
    Computers: Generally in favor of technology, reasonably natural at it as you know, but only use when it truly does something for me and therefore don’t dabble much.
    Music: Certainly appreciate much instrumental music, but most faves are still a combination of quality music and songwriting. In that sense, you’d get along with my wife who seems incapable of following lyrics even when it’s her own band.

    • In terms of computers, I really went through my ‘dabbling’ phase earlier on – building, compiling Linux, etc. My ‘dabbling’ is more utilitarian – trying to figure out what will work to allow me to minimize.

      And music … well, I find that having vocals tends to require a certain adherance to form and structure that generally isn’t my preference. So it isn’t absolute, especially since I remember so many words from 80s pop and rock songs.

      • “Singing is a trick to get people to listen to music for longer than they would ordinarily.”β€”David Byrne

  8. I had a pretty huge brain dump / stream of consciousness yesterday, too. I saw that my blog had a bunch of hits, but unfortunately no comments (too much to read i guess πŸ™‚ )

    My current commute is ~5 miles, too, and I’ve been talking to others to figure out how to do it car free. Even though road biking is extremely popular in my area, a lot of my friends warn AGAINST road biking to work because of certain, dangerous intersections. I suppose I could look into the alternative (public transportation) if I ever wanted to do a no car challenge. Have a great Thursday!

    • Enjoyed your brain dumps – and since commenting I see more flowing in … seems like many others are just lagging with so many blogs to read πŸ™‚

      As you mentioned biking, I thought about it and really there are a couple of spots that are rough to have two cars at the same time, let alone adding a bike to the mix!

  9. I am very jealous of your commute, I commute over 60 miles each way! BOO!! I didn’t know you went to RPI, I went to Union, so I spent a lot of time going to RPI for hockey games, etc!! I am 95% vegetarian, I occasionally eat chicken or turkey. Happy Blogiversary!

    • Thanks Sara – 60 miles?!? Ugh! I really don’t miss commuting around the Boston area; did Stoughton to Billerica for a while, then Acton to Marlborough and finally Townsend to Marlborough.

      Cool on going to Union! Didn’t know that about you! I was fortunate to have a job at the field house, which allowed me to see plenty of concerts and hockey games … which was extra cool because that was the NCAA championship year!

  10. No way you’ve only had the blog for 6 months – I mean I do believe it but still that’s crazy. I used to have a very long commute – one job I drove upwards to 90 minutes one way, I am so thankful now for my 5 minute commute, there is really nothing that would make me go back to the other one. I really could walk/bike to work, but I sweat very easy and we don’t have a shower here either. My friend runs to work every day about a 10K but she has showers and absolutely loves it. At home, we don’t have a ‘home’ computer, just the iPad and I think it is awesome.

    • Thanks for that Jade – I definitely take it as a compliment! I think part of it is I kinda already knew what I wanted to do so I just started doing it! A long commute seems so frustrating to me – wasting time, wasting energy, wearing out your car and roads and so on …

      I would LOVE to be able to run to work every day! Strap on a backpack and go! πŸ™‚

  11. I truly don’t know HOW in the world you put out great content so frequently. I don’t know what you’re talking about when you say you wish you hadn’t posted some things! And I cannot even comprehend what having an internet account before ‘the web’ means … as you know, I am a technophobe and that is WAY over my head! Same with Tumblr. I don’t have one. At least I don’t think I have one!

    I have ALWAYS said “I could never be vegan due to yogurt and ice cream” … and just found out due to some food sensitivity testing I’m doing that I have a severe intolerance to whey, which may be causing some minor digestive problems I’ve dealt with for several years. So … no dairy for several months (starting once I finish my current sugar reset). I LOVE experimenting and trying new things with my diet (hence the sugar reset), but I’m not sure I like THIS kind of experimenting!

    Since my comment is WAYYYY “thinking out loud” already, I’ll add one more thing. Do you have the ability to add in the feature of emailing us when you reply to our comments? Because you put out so many (great!) posts, I find myself forgetting to check back to see if you’ve replied quite often, and I don’t always subscribe to all the comments because of major inbox overload (again, don’t know how you do it). But I would ALWAYS like to know if you have replied. Just a self-centered suggestion! πŸ™‚

    • Thanks SO much for the kind words Megan!

      When I was saying I ask “why did you post this” … I was actually talking more about other blogs I come across. In other words, was it link-bait? Sponsored post? Everyone else is doing it? Sometimes you can read something and it is clear the author doesn’t care about the subject … know what I mean?

      It is actually fun for me going back to some of my old gear that had no wifi or internet capability, no email address field in contacts, and so on … very different time when your computer was ‘an island’!

      Wow … I had no idea about the whey sensitivity! Apparently you have failed to over-share the impact of your minor digestive issues πŸ˜‰ I hope that all of your experimenting goes well. I know for Lisa she is learning what is working and not for her, but her biggest issue is still environmental allergies (and nuts – some makeup had a nut extract and she immediately had hives!). Keep us informed!

      I actually looked at the comment issue, and because I am just on a basic WP.com account, I cannot install plugins – and without plugins only basic comment subscription is supported. So I will have to look into upgrading my account at some point …

      Thanks again for the great comment!

  12. Well, seeing as it’s still March 13th… happy 6 months to your blog! πŸ˜€ And holy.wow there’s seriously so much I want to comment on. Let’s see.

    – yogurt is the reason I could never be vegan as well
    – I’m more of a cake girl than a frosting girl, but I won’t hold that against you πŸ˜‰
    – blogging can definitely be overwhelming sometimes… there are soooo many great blogs out there, but unfortunately not enough time to read them all 😦 If I wanted to, I could probably spend 24/7 doing SOMETHING blog related, but that seems kind of unbalanced πŸ˜‰
    – I remember playing Wolfenstein! Good game… but it seriously made me dizzy. I grew up loving video games, though… Zelda has always been one of my favourite series’, and I’ll gladly buy entire systems JUST for the Zelda game that comes with it. I’ve moved away from consoles and towards computer games in the last handful of years, though. I’ve been playing World of Warcraft since it launched, and while I don’t play it nearly as much as I used to, it’s still something I love to do in my spare time.
    – and… I seriously need to look into getting a keyboard for my iPad. I love using it, but typing on the screen can seriously pose a huge challenge…

    • Thanks Amanda! Love all of the comments!

      We had a cake vs. frosting discussion, and the general concensus is that I make very good cakes but am heavy-handed with the frosting. This last cake I made less frosting and everyone liked the balance better.

      I think we might be talking about different Wolfensteins – it sounds like you’re talking about the pre-Doom shooter … I’m talking about the one that came out 10 years earlier πŸ™‚ (This is the one I am referring to – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VsTwTTwmCLw) I never have been able to stay engaged with a MMO like WoW for very long – I think people like you who have invested so much through the years are amazing!

      As for the iPad keyboard … for me it really makes a huge difference in long-term usage. Between having LTE data connection and the keyboard, I am always connected and able to do stuff (wait … is that a GOOD thing?)

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