Hard to believe that it’s been four long days since I wrote here last. I resolved that I would write more often this year and to my own credit, I have, but I still feel as if certain bits of my life area slipping through the cracks. Perhaps this is for the best though as I suspect most of you would be unamused if I vomited forth every detail of my life here. “Had sausage for the third breakfast in a row today. Thinking perhaps I should eat less processed pork” sort of rot. My banter is relatively mundane even without that, but I do imagine a line that is not to be crossed.
When last I wrote I was fairly disgruntled professionally. I suspect that in part that’s because I’m straddling the line… I’m trying to be far too many things at once. I’m trying to be technical and managerial all at the same time and the choice is clear. I can be a mediocre manager and technical person or I can be fairly good at one or the other. So either I can choose to throw away whatever technical acumen I have or I can abandon my desire to try to manage things at a higher level. The management above me is sadly unhelpful in making this decision, so I suspect that what makes sense is to focus on the technical. My geek quotient, as some might put it, could use some work. So as I sit here typing away my computer plods on in its own geeky work that it does at my bidding. It’s time to go back to my nerdy roots… square and otherwise.
I saw a short film today on Netflix that brought into question my entire ability to map out my past chronologically. I recall, I thought, with some distinctness the kids in elementary school talking about “Sling Blade”…. I remember them walking around going “Mmmm-hum” in a most disturbing manner. They were so young; far too young to be doing such things…. Then I looked at the date on the short film I was watching and realized… to my confusion…. That it was all impossible. I’m not nearly young enough for that to have been the case. It’s clear that I have no sense whatsoever of my own history. Whether it’s covered up by some ages-old psychological defense mechanism or a victim of human nature, it’s impossible for me to say, but suffice to say that my image of my own history is sadly warped. Everything that happened before college has been pushed into elementary school in a most unhelpful manner.
The weekend in general was quite a variety of amusements at once. After the girls on Friday Night/Saturday I raced up to West Lafayette for the 8pm performance of Mr. Heywood Banks. Laura and Eric and I made our way unto the venue to partake of Mr. Banks’ humor, of a somewhat higher order than one normally sees on the comedic scene. Relative to most gentlemen of his genre, his material was more cerebral than the majority of others. He’s no Tom Lehrer, to be sure, but no one else is, honestly. While he does not aspire to the lofty heights of Mr. Lehrer, he has many qualities that distinguish him quite nobly from his peers. His erudition, or at least his pretense to it, is unparalleled in modern comedy. I will say that part of me was more than a bit concerned at the impression Mr. Banks made on our young Mr. Eric. At nine years of age, he is intelligent almost to the point of disbelief but has not yet delved much into the well of adulthood. While Heywood does run a very clean show, many times I wondered what new questions might arise from our young companion after the performance. Whether through disinterest or simple good luck, it was a relief that he didn’t ask any questions with difficult answers.
After Mr. Banks on Saturday night, it was doubtful how Sunday would recommend itself to our positive commentary. As it turns out, it did wonderful on its own behalf. We arose from our slumbers late to finally traipse onto campus for some photography in the early afternoon. In retrospect there wasn’t a ton to photograph. The images of Purdue that I found most iconic and compelling were those that had some special meaning to me but I expected them to have little translation to the world at large. I found myself glad for my radiant company in the person of Ms. Laura, but unexcited about any of our photos from the trip. It was then that my esteemed and wonderful cohort suggested that we wander ourselves down unto the Celery Bog to see what the construction workers has wrought there. Apparently the road crossing the bog has undergone no end of undulation and so it had been closed recently to facilitate it’s total reconstruction. We arrived to find the locale absolutely rife with equipment of a most grand stature. While campus afforded us no grand views, the incomplete construction more than made up for it. As I, and the ever wise John Lennon, have always said, life is what happens to you when you’re busy making other plans. Our planned photo outing was uneventful but our random stop was, dare I say, magical in its scope. After an hour or so we both returned to the illegally-parked vehicle happier for our efforts. As usual, we managed to organically focus on two different aspects of the occasion. My eye was to the grand, sweeping aspects of the scene while Laura captured the minute and delightful detail. Unsurprisingly, we’re in step and complimentary as always.
Monday morning found me restless and ready to move on, sadly. I came home around noon and sat down to program. I recalled with no small significance those days of my childhood, pounding out code on the Tandy Color Computer II. I can’t count how many hours equipment under my guidance pumped out prime numbers or perfect numbers or any number of random and already well-established tasks. I have little patience for iteration, so it’s luckily that computers excel at such things. In this case I devised to solve once and for all the License Plate Game mystery. Once the work of the afternoon finishes (in much less than seven and a half million years) I’ll post the total results as well as resolve the mystery of what exactly the License Plate Game is. Oh, speaking of Douglas Adams, I do have only one regret about the weekend. I’m just sad that despite having access to a bulldozer, neither one of us laid down in front of it to play Arthur Dent. Perhaps next time.