Baseball is terrible

You know how Major League Baseball is really, really boring to watch?

Well imagine that, except there's no beer, hotdogs, beer, garlic fries, popcorn or beer.

Also, there's no cool statistics or analytics because none of the players can throw, catch or hit a ball.

Baseball is fucking terrible, but watching my kids out there playing and having fun is worth every minute.

Roll your own

This blog has seen many iterations on many different platforms. I've tried Wordpress, Tumblr, SquareSpace, Pelican, Calepin, and Jekyll on Github Pages. I'm probably forgetting others.

Today this site is a Node.js app built using the simple, modular static site generator, Simple seldom equals easy, and that is very true here. There is little documentation for Metalsmith and I am not a talented developer. However, Ev wrote a useful guide and is keen to answer any questions over email.

I chose this route for a couple of reasons.

  1. I want to challenge myself by learning something new.
  2. I want complete control over the hosting and platform for this site.

Rolling my own site gave me the opportunity to learn a very small amount of CSS, HTML and Node.js. Building it from the ground up provided me with intimate knowledge of how all of these things work together. If something breaks, it's almost certainly because of something I did wrong. I can troubleshoot almost any issue. I'm in control of everything except domain and VPS hosting, and either of those can be changed to any other provider with minimal effort or downtime. I know this site and how it works better than anyone else.

Now I'm doing the same thing with my mailing list. I gave everyone on the list a week to confirm they wanted to continue to hear from me, then deleted my Mailchimp account. Some people stayed. Most did not.

The new list is small, and manually maintained. I replaced Mailchimp with another Node.js app. Based on node-list, it uses nodemailer to send letters using my email account. The first letter to the new list goes out Sunday, June 12. Will it make it to everyone's inboxes? I've tested it, and it seems to work. If it doesn't, it'll be up to me to figure out why. Want to find out if it works?

On consistency

CJ did a deep study this week on the subject of consistent daily blogging. If you're interested in this topic at all, you should go read up. Here, here, and here.

Ev says looking back, consistency is the secret. Makes sense. This is probably why it's so difficult to maintain. Why so few do.

There are many things, perfectionism in particular, that are the enemy of a consistent creative practice.

Have you ever noticed that the secret to all the secrets is that it's never the easy path?


My friend Matt has this amazing idea for an app. I think you're going to like it. We haven't exactly figured out how it works yet, but that doesn't matter. The point is that this is going to help a lot of people, and we are going to get rich.

The problem

Browsing your Facebook timeline you are inundated with the same kinds of photos that you're sick of seeing, over and over: your friends' smug accomplishments, their in-your-face celebrations, their annoying kids.

The solution

You set the types of events or subjects that annoy you the most. Any time one of these offensive images shows up in your timeline, BOOM! It's immediately replaced with a random image of a cat!

Imagine this:

  • Friends did an "edgy" engagement photo-shoot? No thanks. Here's some cats.

  • Endless stream of wedding/honeymoon/vacation photos? Nope, cats.

  • New baby? Cats.

  • Picture of their cat? No, picture of your cat!

I think you get the idea. Basically, it works just like an ad-blocker, except that it's a cat-swapper. Genius, right? Matt's a Thought Leader. Of course, he would prefer that all the pictures be of his cat, Obi-wan. Maybe that's user-configurable; we're still working out the details.

That explains Cat-Swap. Why the "+"?

Great question! I'm glad you asked, because I'm really excited about this part.

I'm thinking we put in a button, superimposed over each cat-swapped picture. Not obstructive or anything, just neatly tucked away in the bottom right corner.

Anyway, this button is labelled "Freedom", and when you click/tap it, your Facebook account is instantly and irrevocably deleted, without confirmation.


All the wrong places

A homeless woman at the liquor store tried to pick me up on Saturday night.

"You're a handsome man," she said "I'd take you home if I had one."

I'm happily married, but that was a great line and I liked her moxie.