Slightly Underwater

Saturday, February 27, 2010 … somewhere over the Atlantic …
I like living a full and rich life with many interesting hobbies. The downside is that I never seem to have time to do all of the interesting things in my life. Right now I take this as a blessing in disguise, whenever I have the time to think about it.
I was hoping things would calm down a bit after Dragon*Con 2009. I could relax, watch a little of the 100+ hours of video we shot, catch up with my friends and get some stuff out of the way so 2010 would start fresh.

Yes, I know … always the mentally-unbalanced optimist …

Work has been the thing eating my brain cycles the past few months. We’ve been busy, which is the blessing. I have my job, my company has new business and I know how important this is in the grand scheme. There have been more trips, more calls and a lot of new things to think about.

I’m doing that “free range engineer” thing again where I bounce between filing patents, design product plans and generating more PowerPoint than seen in an entire Dilbert retrospective.

This graph represents the decline in my dignity, until this point where I am reduced to pointing at a chart projected onto a wall …

So with the engineer need of my brain fully occupied, my creative output is marginal at best.

What most people don’t understand is that the same part of the brain that handles artist creativity is hooked into the part that engineers use when writing code or designing machines. It’s all the same stuff at a certain level. So when I get home I want something that doesn’t smell like … well, creation.

The irony of this is that I only have time to write this thanks to business travel. Yes, I am composing this work of blog using my trusty netbook while the Atlantic Ocean rotates below me. It also doesn’t hurt that Delta had to reboot the in-flight entertainment system … I’ve seen this Linux boot screen so many times I almost have it memorized …

Why did they use RedBoot for this? It seems so slow …

Look, here’s where the AMD Geode audio driver gets initialized by the i386 Linux kernel …

Oh, a frame buffer driver … how quaint …

Now, where was I? Oh yes, free time.

Don’t think that the only thing I’ve been missing lately is hobbies. I have friends that I don’t get to see as often. Dear friends that are not only part of my creative hobbies, but also people I just like spending time with. Lately, when push comes to shove, I see my friends before I see my video editor.

Of course, I know I do this to myself. The phase of wanting to curl up with the Olympics on TV rather than mangle video of a zombie in front of a green screen is somewhat related to burnout. I think this will pass after a week of snapping photos in Germany, wandering the halls of two major tradeshows and missing everything installed on my stationary desktop computer. Nothing makes you miss home more than knowing a dual-monitor workstation doesn’t fit into the size-wise container at the Delta counter.

Spring brings a birthday, longer periods of sunlight and the first Dragon*Con staff meeting. My friends and a lot of what I do with my free time will converge on one timeline. I hope the universe gives me a good balance of work, friends, hobbies and family upon my return.

Oh, looks like the entertainment system is back. Talk to you later.

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