Lifenotes 5

Adios Valencia

  • Welp, that 90 days went pretty quick. Our time in Spain has been quite lovely. We’ve both learned some Spanish, eaten some paella, ran some runs, enjoyed some siestas, seen a MotoGP race, met up with some buds, and spent some time with family. Next stop is Split, Croatia.

Lifenotes 4


  • August was my last month as a New York resident. It’s been a magical, frustrating, amazing place to spend the past decade, and leaving is bitter-sweet. We’ll be shoving off for Valencia, Spain later this month. That laid back Spanish living will be a nice change of pace for a while. I’m not sure what comes after that—we’re taking it one step at a time.

    After moving out of my apartment, we headed to an Airbnb we rented for the two weeks before our flight. It was the grossest damn thing I’ve ever seen. We encountered a cockroach within 2 minutes. The hand towel in the kitchen had roach eggs all in it. The dish soap was watered down so as to resemble water with a bit of blue food coloring. There was a leak under the sink that’d clearly been running for years—all the wood was rotten and moldy and horrible. I called Airbnb, and left almost immediately.

    We got super-lucky, and some good friends happened to be leaving for a camping trip for the exact two weeks we needed a place. They generously let us stay in their lovely Brooklyn apartment while they’re out. So, we’re holed up in an infinitely better spot while we await our flight out of here.

  • Valencia happens to be the last stop in the MotoGP season, which will also be Valentino Rossi’s final GP race ever. Hopefully covid remains enough under control in Spain, so that we can go cheer him on.
  • My friend Andrew came up with this clever laptop stand called the Basic Stand. I picked one up as a lightweight/compact laptop stand to take while I’m traveling. It’s very neat, and raises my laptop up much higher than the kind of standard aluminum stands we’re all familiar with. My posture is thankful. Brilliant stuff.

Lifenotes 3

Big Business

  • HappyGastropod, LLC is officially a thing. I’ve been using the name HappyGastropod since 2008. Thirteen years later, we’re officially in business! I’ve been working on a little bulletin-board software called Cafayo that prompted the move to start a company. I’ve always loved the name HappyGastropod, and loved the goofy logo I made all those years ago: This thing remains a nights-and-weekends type of project. It’s been a fun learning experience thus far, and I’m excited by the possibilities.
  • I’m building Cafayo using some Hotwire libraries and techniques. It’s an absolute delight to build apps this way. It’s so refreshing, having spent the past several years writing in the flavor-of-the-month single-page-app framework for work. Hotwire is simple, fast, and (once you wrap your brain around it) surprisingly flexible. A shame about its whole relation to Basecamp…
  • After years of prodding by some family and friends, I broke down and bought an Xbox Series-S. I got it primarily to whip my brother’s ass in the MotoGP Game. It’s not going as planned, thus far. I have much practice to do.
  • Governor’s Island is open to the public yet again. Cynthia and I went this weekend and enjoyed the scenery.

Lifenotes 2


  • New joke who dis? Ready?

    A minister, a priest, and a rabbit walk into a hospital. A doctor asks the rabbit: “do you know your blood type?” The rabbit replies: “I don’t. But I think I’m a type-o”

  • Lots of people around me are getting vaccinated—including my parents. It finally feels like the end of this pandemic is in sight. With summer approaching, I’m really looking forward to the possibility of some semblance of non-pandemic normalcy.
  • Spring is upon us, and it feels so good. Last year, we heard nonstop how NY was dead. This weekend proved otherwise.
  • The first race of the MotoGP season is next week. It’s a little sad to see Valentino Rossi move down to the satellite team. But good grief does his setup look excellent. Valentino Rossi on his new Petronas Yamaha

Lifenotes 1

Let’s Begin

  • I recently stumbled upon Tom Stuart’s Weekly Notes, and was inspired by the simplicity of keeping a weekly occasional set of notes. So, let’s embrace the opportunity to start anew.
  • I wrapped up Jason Hickel’s Less is More. It’s is an excellent read about the incompatibility of growth-based capitalism with environmental sustainability. I used to have the naive idea that GDP could continue to grow while we transitioned to sustainable energy production. Hickel pretty thouroughly debunks that idea. Eye opening and mostly hopeful book. Definitely recommend it.
  • Gall’s Law came up at work this week. It states:

    A complex system that works is invariably found to have evolved from a simple system that worked. A complex system designed from scratch never works and cannot be patched up to make it work. You have to start over with a working simple system.

  • I’ve been playing Dead by Daylight with some buds for a few weeks now. It’s grown on me. It’s a hilarious-to-play asymmetrical survival game where four survivors try to escape from a killer. Best played with friends on voice chat so you can hear teammates scream bloody murder as they’re found by the killer.
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