What I Am Doing Lately?

I’ve been pretty busy lately. Busy as in really engaged in life. Busy as in like I’m too busy living to sit down and write about it. So, I guess that means things are going pretty well. Let’s see, what am I doing …

* Working on my web page. No URL yet as I want to wait for the big premier. But it involves integrating my art gallery, my blog, my book library, my book reviews, my essays, my tag clouds, my dream symbol dictionary (and turning it into a wiki), a gift shop of stuff I recommend, and other fun on-line tools that I want to write. It has graphics and a nice layout. It’ll be your one-stop, Web 2.0 pedalinfaith source.
* This means I’ve learned CSS finally (the last time I did a web page, which was years ago, CSS wasn’t much of a force yet). I’m learning PHP so as to write a web interface on stuff I put into a database (e.g., my dream symbol wiki). And I have been refining my JavaScript skills. (Yes, my web page has rollovers and I’ve done without even needing any pesky image swapping.) I’m having trouble with asynchronously reading RSS feeds using XMLHTTPRequest (and its other browser equivalents). Harumph. I think in the interest of time, I’ll scrap my JavaScript and use a prepackaged JS from another web source. Anyone familiar with this issue?
* I have been learning to be an entrepreneur. I’ve got conversations going with a couple of different folks for a couple of different endeavors. Nothing that pays yet (or will for a long time). I have a class this week in marketing databases.
* I’m helping put together a “Boulder Readers of The Sun Magazine” group. I just set up the Yahoo! group last night. Which means more cool friends, oh, yeah.
* I am trying to learn to be a decent writer. <lj user=haywardboy> has given me some pointers lately and I have some homework to do. Some of the folks in my Boulder Sun Readers group want to have a little writing group, so that will be a boon.
* I’m populating my family tree into a cool Web 2.0 site for my whole family to enjoy. I’ve got a line on about 50,000 relatives–dead and alive. Crazy. And addictive. But very cool. As is usually the way my creative endeavors work, other folks have done all of the original research and my contribution is to synthesize it all into something accessible and fun. I’m totally OK with that. It’s what I do best.
* I’m attending to an aging dog whose body seems to require a lot of extra maintenance.
* I’m doing some reading for my thesis. A woman wrote a book that was a lot of the book I wanted to write but now I don’t have to and she’s coming to give a workshop in December so you can bet I’ll be going to that.
* And, last but not least, I’ve got a relationship with a great guy. I haven’t blogged at all about it lately because it’s just that there’s not a lot to talk about. We are in some relationsip zone that’s new to me. We aren’t spending as much time together. And yet we’re still together. He’s not perfect. In fact, he’s downright disappointing sometimes. And yet I still enjoy his company. I’m showing that not all I’m cracked up to be (and in fact have been quite sensitive lately). And still he keeps asking to spend time with me. So, what’s that? I guess that it’s the “we’re in the 6 months to 2 years stage of getting to know each other in which I apparently feel safe enough to show that I’m not the know-it-all stable one who constantly gives and gives in order to keep his attention” but now that there’s not the intensity, I don’t quite trust in the stability nor do I know what to do with myself so I’m just awkward a lot of the time.

Hmmm. Give me a few crackers and I have a hard time working up an appetite. But pile my plate high and I seem to get ravenous for life.

Doo Dog Update

Just so as ya know, I am still battling lice on Doo Dog. It’s weird that he has them. In the first place, he’s rarely ever around other dogs and when he is, it isn’t like they are rolling around together. Doo is too old for rough-housing. And, second of all, dog lice tend to be a winter ailment (according to the vet). Nevertheless, there they are. I was squicked out about them at first but I’ve sort of gotten used to dealing with them now (especially since they are species-specific and so my cat and I can’t catch them). It has been a month and a half of the stress of weekly (or more frequently) baths and of picking the little parasites off of him. (And probably 2 1/2 months since he contracted them.) I had to get him shaved down again last week because his hair had grown so thick and curly again, I couldn’t see the pests anymore. I haven’t found any on him yet this week (although he is still scratching in places, but that could just be dry skin from all of the pesticide baths). So, I’ve got my fingers crossed.

More Doo updates….

Silver Lining

Sometimes gifts come wrapped in unexpected packaging. Remember all that crap I went through a few months ago with my cell phone and eventually Cingular was forced into giving me a fancy schmancy phone? So, I ended up with a phone that does calendar stuff but I didn’t use it for that because I had my iPaq. And besides all of my address book and calendar info is on my Mac and I have to use special software just to get my iPaq to sync with it. And that software doesn’t even work for the new phone.

Now, remember a couple of weeks ago when my hard drive died? When I got it back, someone had mistakenly upgraded my Op Sys to the latest version of Panther. Lucky me. Now, the real surprise. The latest version of iSync on the Mac knows how to automatically sync with my fancy schmancy phone via bluetooth. Two things that I never paid for (except in hair pulling) but that work together!

I can get rid of my iPaq now (whose syncing software no longer seems to work with Panther anyway). That’s a few hundred bucks less of hardware that I have to carry around. I love getting rid of stuff. And–have I mentioned?–I love my Mac.

Now, if I could only figure out what the hell is up with my wireless network since I got my new hard drive home. Ye gawds, it’s always sumthin.

Entrepreneur

I went to my first Boulder Small Business Development Center workshop last week, led by Ira Nottonson. The class was ostensibly on building business plans, but Ira had lots of other useful advice as well. I intend to go through my notes and make them available in some generally usable format somewhere. But, for now, here’s one little gem that got me excited. He said that he has had businesses on both coasts and that Boulder is an exceptional place to become an entrepreneur: There are lots of resources here, lots of people doing it successfully, and, most importantly, people here are not jealous of others’ successes and generally want to help other people to be successful as well. Lesson #1: Get thee a mentor. Truly successful entrepreneurs, the kind that you want to associate with, will be happy to share what they’ve learned and to help you be successful too. It won’t be hard; you just have to ask.

My “everything you need to know to start a small business” class starts in a week and a half. So, more coming for sure. My main motivation to learn is for my own business that I’d like to start. But I could also use some practice and momentum before I take the training wheels off. Tonight, I meet with my buddy and his buddy who have a thing going that they’d like to turn into money-making venture. I think their idea is a good one and we’re going to talk about bringing me in as someone who can provide them some business framework and keep a fire lit under their butts.

I still have a thesis to finish and day job to keep and relationship to water and weed. (Those aren’t in any particular order of priority.) I also know that I can easily get mightily involved in and excited about new learning opportunities, so much so that even basic housecleaning doesn’t get done. So, this will also be an exercise in pacing and self-care.

The more I get used to thinking of myself as an entrepreneur, the more it just makes total sense. I just don’t feel like the kind of person who makes a good employee anymore.

September 11

Almost everyone I know probably remembers exactly where they were when they heard the news 5 years ago today. I could say a lot of things here in commemoration of the event. Most of them are being said by other people, more eloquently than I could. So, I share a more personal memory.

I was on my way to work, listening to the radio, when I heard. My dad was staying with me, renovating my basement, and I figured that probably hadn’t heard the news. After watching the second tower fall on TV, I went home and found him in the dusty, concrete hole that would become a guest bathroom and when I told him, what’s the first thing he said? Prophetically, “Well, that’s the end of civil liberties as we know them.”

That was damn astute, Dad.