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Showing posts with the label This Old Dad

AI Takeover: The Fitness Frontier

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  Here's the deal: I'm done making a mess of things, especially my workouts. So, I'm trying a new tactic: I'm letting AI take over my exercise regimen. Crazy? Maybe. But when your push-ups look more like a belly flop, it's time for a change. I'm giving the power to the algorithms. It's like having a trainer who never messes up, never forgets your weak spots, and always knows just when to push you harder. And if this goes well, I might just let this digital genius make more of my life decisions. Why trust a robot? Well, if you saw me in the gym, struggling through another set of whatever-the-hell I'm trying to do, you'd understand. That's me, the poster child for "help needed." So, I'm taking a leap into the AI abyss, where my left hamstring is more than just a vague concept. Sure, there's a bit of a rebellion from the human touch enthusiasts. But when you've got a track record like mine, a little robotic precision might be j

A new beginning

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  Here goes: I'm finally buckling down to document this wild ride I've signed up for. The idea of starting a blog hit me back when we were waiting for our daughter Raven to arrive in the winter of 2021/2022. I messed around with the idea, put it off, and honestly, didn't get much done. This has been a familiar story of mine for about 30 years. I've wanted to journal and write with a lot of starting and a whole lot of nothing to show for it. Wouldn't you know it, the universe has its own sense of humor, throwing another baby into the mix, due March 2024. Looks like I've got a second shot at this. A lot has changed since I first thought about what life would be with Raven in it. I was freaking out, unsure about everything, and questioning whether I could hack it. Just yesterday, a friend caught wind we were expecting again and had that same look of disbelief—like, why would I go for round two (actually 4)? I get it. I've asked myself the same questions. When t

Here it comes!

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 My old, dark friend, the end-of-year winter depression that I fight against every year, is finally clawing back into my thoughts. Despite it, I convinced myself to write this entry at 1 am on Sunday night/Monday morning of the one-week countdown until school and work start again. This is my attempt to fight back.  The mood has seemed to take off since I started teaching, but I think that it's always been there. In the teacher version, the most depressing and dark days of the year for me are toward the end of winter break. It's an all-consuming dread that I'll never do justice to in writing and sounds like privileged whining when I listen to myself. But every year, right on schedule, I dive into a deep funk.  It's the anticipation of something awful that I can't reason myself out of and can't give up hope of avoiding. There is still time for a miracle in the constant calculations of my delusions, but the inevitable backing into a corner is imminent. I feel too f

Building a Fortress

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Fortress by Queens of the Stone Age 2017 Before I officially became one, back when I only imagined being a parent, I had all kinds of ideas about how it would go and how my kids would respond to my wonderful parenting. Then reality hit. I constantly screwed up, said the wrong things, got upset at stupid bullshit and just generally disappointed myself regularly. I looked forward to other chances and opportunities. I measured the time left until my kids moved on as adults or, much sooner, stopped listening as teenagers. That time used to seem so far away! "I have 12 years to make up for saying/doing ______" has been replaying continuously in my head during my time as a parent. I've had a feeling since we moved back from the Philippines that time was slipping away. I grasp at it, but it's like trying to catch smoke. The 12 years to make up for everything is down to a number that I can easily count on one hand. It kills me. I try to motivate myself to be a better person a

Hey, Dude! Advice for life from an old dad, No 1--Don't be a dick.

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Hey, Dude! Since this is my first post to you directly, I should explain what I'm hoping to accomplish. As I start this blog, I'm struggling with honesty. How much do I divulge? Am I brave enough to make myself look bad even when it isn't because of a funny situation? And no matter how much I hide it, you'll see that it would be easy to let my flaws define me, so there's plenty of unflattering material. We'll see. I'm realizing this particular kind of honesty hasn't been a strong point of mine up until now, but it's probably the most important kind of honesty to have. In this spirit of openness and honesty, I'll start small and admit that I worry about how long I'll be around to know you. My father only made it until my youngest sister was 16 before he died. He was 53; I'm already a bunch older than he was when he died and you aren't even born yet. I've got my work cut out for me. If I'm super fortunate, you'll be reading

Coincidence?

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My dorm room freshman year at Purdue, 1983 I began my college career at Purdue University in the fall of 1983. I had a disastrous academic career, if you gauge by most typical academic standards. Before I fell into many of my harmful patterns, I signed up for an extra one-credit class run by TAs from psychology 101. I don't remember anything about it except for the story I'm about to tell, but I'm assuming that they did lots of unethical experiments on us throughout the semester.  If you are math averse, it is almost 40 years since I started at Purdue. I've been exploring the idea of memory, so here are a couple of things about my memories of that time that are interesting to me: I only spent five years at college, even with my stalling and mishaps. I've now had 11 distinct five-year periods in my life, but that time of debauchery holds a lot of space in my memory. Not the actual memories, but the weight I give to that time. It's true that when I was, say, 28, c

Everything Is Not Yet Lost

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First posts are always hard. Today I was cleaning my desk and found the quotation that's attached to the Polaroid in the image. It's from the 2010 movie Everything Must Go starring Will Ferrell. I can't exactly explain why, beyond I often feel like I'm scouting out the edge of life where everything becomes lost, that this sentence moves me, but it gives me pause and the urge to cry every time I read it. Check out the movie if you haven't. So let's start this most recent attempt at a blog with that statement of hope: Everything is not yet lost!