Bunnies On Campus

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So I have been spending the last couple of days working at the McPherson Library at UVic. It’s easy to carpool with Julie, and gives me an opportunity to get away from the house and the distractions contained therein. It’s funny – yesterday I was sitting in a carrel working on my swanky new laptop, and I am pretty sure I sat in the same one, with my then swanky new laptop* , 15 years ago when I was a student here in 1991. Who would’ve thunk it.

So being here on campus, I’ve been seeing the bunnies – a feature of the geography here I had nearly forgotten about.

I am not sure where they came from, but I’d say there are more here now than there were before. I counted 9 walking from the parking lot to the library. They just hop about, munching grass, being bunnies. It’s a little weird, and oddly comforting. This has been how I have been finding most of Victoria in general. I took some video on my little camera and posted it on YouTube. You can also see it below.

* My first computer was pretty slick at the time, a Mac Powerbook 100 – the first Mac laptop Apple built. 2 MB Ram (I upgraded form 1) and a 20 MB hard drive! The pinnacle of computing, it’s been downhill ever since.

Where are my glasses?

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I turned 34 this year. Still young, many might say. It’s the oldest I’ve ever been, so it doesn’t always feel that way. I’ve noticed – many rites of passage and milestones traditionally associated with age don’t bother me. Hair shmair! It was great when I had it, now I don’t. Who cares? turning 30 was great for me. I got married that year and learned how to ride a motorcycle. I abandoned a svelte physique in my 20s, and like we all do, I guess I have the standard hang-ups about my new-found corpulence, but on the whole it doesn’t bother me now that my wardrobe has turned over a time or two.

It didn’t even phase me when, a few years ago, my brother, Paul (an optometrist by trade) recommended I get reading glasses. I bought a pair, and every now and again, I’d wear them to prevent eye strain at the end of the day.

Today however, just moments ago, I had one of those thoughts that just makes you feel old. It was the first time this thought had occured to me ever. The thought was “Where did I put my glasses?”

See, when I first got the glasses, it was because Paul said it might help. I didn’t need them. Lately, I have been using them more and more, and have found they improve my vision.

Today, when I was looking around, holding a piece of paper with fine type I wanted to read, thinking “Where did I put my glasses”, well, I felt old. I realized that this was the first time for this thought, and that it would likely be the first of many, many occaisions for it to run through my brain,  and there is no going back.

There must’ve been a first time I thought “Where are my keys?”. There must have been a first time I thought “I am going to be late for work!”. Well, today was the first for “Where did I put my glasses?”.

Funny how these little details that forge our identities affect us differently. Having glasses? No problem for me. Wanting them and not knowing where they are? That’s another story.

In March, My brother Paul and sister-in-law, Gina, became the proud parents of a beautiful baby girl, Sophia. With her birth, the family titles changed. Paul and Gina were upgraded from sibling, son and daughter to mom and dad. I went from brother to uncle, my parents to grandparents, and my grandmother became a great-grandmother (not that she wasn’t already great!). When asked about how she felt about being a great-grandmother, she said (roughly), “well, I certainly do feel like a great-grandmother and I am happy for that, but what I just can’t believe is that I am the mother of a grandfather.”

She paused and looked me in the eye, “I love being a great-grandmother, but you know you are old when your son is a grandfather!”

Why Blog?

For years I have been thinking of starting a blog, but I would always ask myself, why? I didn’t have a good answer for that question, so I put it off. I never stopped thinking about it entirely, though, like an unfinished project in pieces in a box somewhere I was waiting for the right time to finish, blogging always felt like an inevitable fate for me, but the motivation was never imminent.

Then a couple of things happened.

A recent move to Victoria from Vancouver drove home the importance for me to keep my human relationships alive. I thought a blog might help facilitate that, and even help forge new ones. I know I sometimes wonder about people I haven’t talked to in a while. If they are bloggers, I can cease to wonder and just find out, and if I am so inclined, leave a radar blip for them in email or comment form. Knowing I was leaving my community, I felt blogging was a way to leave it without abandoning it.

Another reason is, as a guy who develops web sites professionally, I really wanted to explore all the ins and outs of the techniques in creating a blogging web site. I wanted to do that for myself. I learn best when I am not motivated by deadlines and budgets. If I want to futz with this blog for 3 hours to figure out how to make the smallest detail work exactly how I want it to, I can do that without feeling I am working ineffectively or inefficiently. More to the point, I have the freedom to work on my blog as ineffectively or inefficiently as I want to.

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My brother shared some wise words with me that related to this concept once. He was talking about working on a 20 year old Subaru, not a personal blog, but the principle applies.

“If a job is worth doing, it is worth doing right,” He said.

“But if it is NOT worth doing,” he continued, “at least you don’t have to worry about doing it well.”

This is an important concept in learning anything, I have found. If you are willing to make mistakes, you’ll try new things. If you aren’t, you rarely will venture outside of the bounds you’ve created for yourself.

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But I digress. About blogging. Having covered the learning issue, let me now address the largest myth about blogs that I have found so far.

Some people think that those who blog are doing it for the benefit of their readers. Not true.

For me anyway, blogging is more about getting stuff off my chest. I now have a reason to sit and hammer away at this keyboard – It is because I have a blog. Frankly, otherwise I wouldn’t be writing much at all.

I welcome you to read my blog, dear reader, and I am flattered that you have read this far, but make no mistake. Right now I am doing this because, well, I kind of like writing.

I like seeing my thoughts travel out of my brain, through my arms, hands, and fingers, clumsily fed through the keyboard one letter at a time, and eventually on to any computer screen that dares point itself at my blog. I like that, and that is another reason I do it.

My friend Travis, who is very heavy into blogging, said in a recent conversation, “A lot of people ask me why I blog, and the only response I have is, ‘Try it! Try it and you’ll see!’”

Well, I have tried it, and now I see.