Wipe Day

Escape from Tarkov wiped yesterday, and I spent most of the evening playing, but I’ll get to that in a second. Yesterday was productive, work and home-wise, and I’ve already got today off to a good start. I only had four hours of sleep last night but I’m actually pretty alert and energetic. I haven’t had a drink since the return flight from Disney, so it’s five days now and I’m pretty clear headed. I’m actually kinda worried about this being a holiday weekend, that I might fall back into those habits — old BCM, as Missus calls it — and go back to feeling shitty.

I’ve had a metaphor stuck in my head lately, something from my TL that said something like work like a lion, not a gazelle. Actually, the quote is from Naval, and “working well is hunting like a lion, not grazing like a cow.” I like that much better. I should know that anyways, I have had the Almanac sitting on my dresser for over a year, I guess I should re-read it.

Anyways my point is that I’ve been managing the team like we’re a bunch of cows. Since I’ve never delivered anything like the dao before, I’ve been allowing everyone to do their thing without much interference. It was hard for us to establish timelines without knowing tasks, and we spent a lot of time doing research and doing other things that were dead ends. It was almost leisurely, in a way. Now though, the heat is on, so I’ve shifted how were operating, it’s time to pounce like a lion for the next two weeks and grind out the release. In this case it’s not so much about seeing an opportunity as being given a directive, but the team is confident they can deliver and I have to trust them.

That said, there’s still a lot to do between our initial release and where I’d like things to be, but we’re in a bear market, competition is hot, and the money will be coming into the space soon. Small fish won’t survive, so we need to show we can deliver.

At home I’ve had to make few changes as well. Since we don’t have any daycare plans for the kids, and sleep-away camp is a few weeks away, I’ve had to put some ground rules down for the kiddos. No TV before 10AM. I’ve got a list of chores — maybe I should start calling them responsibilities — that I want them to start doing before I even consider allowing them screen time. Things will easily devolve into a cluttered mess of clothes, toys, dishes, &c., and Missus and I are going to have to maintain our sanity. The girls are going to have to step it up. I’ll not be living in filth.

I’ve started playing Habitica and using pomodromo timers to get my ass in gear. I even created a Habitica party with Elder to try and motivate her. My dailies include meditation, blogging, exercise, and and hour spent practicing music (keys and pads), and I wrote a task list up on the fridge whiteboard for the kids with the things I expect out of them, and I’m trying to establish clear boundaries for them. They will not be watching TV all summer. No sir.

Lasty, Tarkov. I don’t want to be writing about Tarkov as I’d rather be playing Tarkov, or watching videos about Tarkov. I am utterly and completely hooked. The wipe was yesterday, all accounts were reset to zero, and I spent the entirety of my afternoon and evening squeezing in as much time as I could. It’s only my second wipe, so I’ve been playing since December or so, and my progression should be a lot faster now that I know what I’m doing. I actually killed another player in my first PMC raid and it was pretty exhilarating. The game is super fun at this stage, so I want to get as many runs as I can in, ratting with my scav every chance I get, and trying to do missions and chadding it out with my PMC when my scav isn’t available.

Of course I woke up dreaming about Tarkov, and I promised myself that I would limit myself to a scav run this morning, but only after I did all my morning chores.

And I’m done.


I’m getting back into a healthy rhythm following the debauchery of the magic kingdom. Last night’s sleep aside, yesterday was very productive. The heat is on at work, and I even went to the rock gym with my new carpool buddy yesterday evening — it was a good session, I did some top rope and nailed a 5.9.

Having the kids gone in the afternoon when Missus gets home has been very relaxing. Having dinner just the two of us is more romantic than anything we did at Disney. Even now, trying to write with them bustling about the house, music playing, is very distracting. It’s like COVID lockdown all over again. Yesterday, as I was involved a rather contentious discussion at work, the kids kept popping into the room to ask me whether they could do this or that.

It’s all my fault for not scheduling summer care earlier in the year. I will not be making that mistake in the future.

Missus is working from home now, waiting on her ruling for a permanent telework dispensation. She might reconsider that, given that I just had to yell at Elder for talking back to me when I asked her to run the dishwasher. She told me that it wasn’t on her list of chores, which I had written as ‘straighten kitchen’.


Insomnia struck again last night. I played Tarkov until eleven and finally made my way to bed a half hour later. The rain was coming down heavily, and Missus was snoring so badly that I went to sleep on the couch. I woke a few hours later. The rain had stopped, and I went back upstairs to my bed to find that Younger had stolen my spot. I went to her bed, only to be kept from sleep by birds, the cat — which startled itself by activating one of Younger’s electronic pets — and finally a neighbor’s Trans Am as they left for work at five-thirty.

So I got up.

I did some stretching. My tired old body was still ravaged from the rock gym from Sunday. I made tea, which I hadn’t done in forever, and cleaned up. Two litter boxes that were nasty, I cleaned up the cats’ food and water dishes that we laid out when we went on vacation — back on your diet, cats! — took out the trash and tidied up the dishes. Then I sat and meditated. By the time I was done I was able to lay back down on the couch and passed out immediately. I dreamt vividly.

The place was somewhat familiar, a frat house, or similar party house that I had lived at before. There was a girl there, my type, one I’ve dreamed of before, but not anyone in particular. There was a party, a roaring party of youthful hedonism, the girls started taking their shirts off and dancing to what I suppose could best be called old-school stripper music. It was going well.

Then I realized I had brought my daughters to the house.


I am such a pessimist that I could have a stinky attitude at the resort, on vacation. I think that my main problem is that I feel old. And married. Al Bundy is my spirit animal. There is so much skin on display that I can’t help feeling despair. It’s a case that I can have anything I want, but I can’t have everything I want. And I want it all.

One of my implicit rules about this blog is that I don’t talk about sex. I could, but I don’t see what good would come out of it. Not for me or my future self, nor Dear Reader. For all the talk I do about radical transparency, I still feel like I’m a pervert, or that there’s someone I know reading this that would ruin things if I actually wrote what I felt. All the pretense about anonymity would fail if I thought for a second that someone I knew was reading this.

Also I’m pretty sure it’d be instant grounds for divorce.

Not to cast blame, but my dad was a pretty blatant sexist. I don’t think that we could even go for a drive together without him casting eyes and making lewd comments about whatever attractive women we saw along the way. I assume it was some sort of masculine signaling thing. I know that he cheated on my mom, he also thought I was gay because I summarily rejected the way he treated women. It’s probably why I got stuck in the friend zone with women for so much of my earlier years. The same way I rejected my dad’s gun culture, car culture, so did I reject his casual misogyny and sexism.

My dad and I are great these days, by the way.

I’ve never been one to shy away from admiration of the female form, though, and it’s been on prime display here at the resort. I really do understand patriarchal systems that have sought to oppress the female form. It really is distracting, for lack of a better term. Being a girl-dad as I am makes it even more ridiculous.

I’ve felt somewhat depressed this trip. It boils down to the first of the Four Noble Truths, that suffering is caused by desire. My desire has been great, but it’s been tempered by the realization that it can’t be fulfilled. After all, I’m Married With Children.

I’ve seen so many attractive women here the last few days that I joked to my friends that I have whiplash. It was bad enough at the park, but it’s been unbearable hanging out at the pool. I feel like a pederast.

So much fun

We spent most of the day in our hotel room. Missus went to do her delegate duty, the girls and I laid in bed until eleven before we finally grabbed some food and made our way out into the grounds.

I’m staring out the window at the Epcot dome, which I now know is called Spaceship Earth. I watched a few videos today to figure out what the attractions are. The lights just wet dark, I was expecting fireworks.

We spent the afternoon at the pool. I think I spent a hundred and fifty on food and alcohol. C’est la vie, apparently.

The fireworks just started. The kids are underwhelmed. I can’t help but think about how much the park spends on them each night and how much of each of our tickets goes toward them.

I feel like a dirty old man. There is so much flesh on display at the pool that I don’t know what to do with myself.

We’re having so much fun that Missus wants to send us home two days early.

Fathers’ Day at Disney

So it’s six PM on Sunday, the girls, including Missus are passed out in bed after a full day at the Magic Kingdom. We’re headed back for a late dinner at Be Our Guest, and I insisted that Elder and Younger take naps before we go back.

We flew out yesterday morning and got to Orlando before noon and headed out to Hollywood Studios. I hadn’t planned anything out and we wound up wasting most of the day. We walked through the Star Wars park, but didn’t do either of the rides. Just wound up doing a Frozen sing-along and a 3D Muppet movie. Lessons learned.

Today was much better — we put out for the Genie+ so we could skip lines: Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean, and something else I’ve already forgot. We managed to get in a couple other rides the traditional way: It’s a Small World, and another 3D musical selection.

The kids are rotten and spoiled, competitive and ingrates. It’s probably a reflection of my narcissism and bad parenting, but they drove me crazy. I am that asshole dad that yells at their kids at the Happiest Place on Earth. Shame on me.

As far as people watching goes, there’s really no better place. The weather has been sweltering — 105 degrees with the heat index. I can’t even walk without sweating like a pig. I’m amazed that the staff — excuse me — cast members can perform without dying. God help those poor bastards in the suits. But the sheer humanity on display is amazing. I almost feel bad.

I saw a woman on the carousel today that was bigger than the horse. I have no idea how she got up there.

And on the other hand are the examples of youth and fitness that are wearing clothes that leave nothing — almost nothing — to the imagination. I feel dirty, but I am a male and a visual creature, and have decided that ogling shall be my vice.

I will also have a reckoning in several years when my girls come of age and want to wear yoga pants or tight-fitting clothes. God help me.

In a few minutes I’ll wake them and make our way back to the park. We’re staying on the resort, the Swan and Dolphin, where everything costs the same as in the park, ten dollars for a decent IPA — or an egg muffin for that matter. I’ve already resigned myself to throwing money away and IDGAF for the most part.

Still, it bothers me that my girls are spoiled and don’t know how good they have it. We fight when we should be having fun.

It bothers me more that I don’t know whether it’s my fault that they’re this way.

Prepping for Disney

Well the last week has been somewhat ho-hum for me. The girls are wrapping up school on Friday and Saturday morning we get on a plane and head out for a week at Disney, so we’re preparing for that. I’m not really excited, I tend to save that energy for when we’re actually doing the thing, unlike Missus who turns into a nervous anxiety ball of cleaning and preparing the house. Younger is obviously happy, but I don’t think I’ve heard Elder express any feelings about it at all.

I’m no longer stinging from the loss of our Hawaii trip that we missed due to COVID. My swag bag came from work, a bunch of hats, t-shirts, and gear with Star Atlas Hawaii 2022 embroidered on it. So maybe I’m just trying to spare myself the emotional disappointment I experienced after that vacation disaster. Not that I think that anything will happen on this trip; I’m just not hyping it up in my head at all. I have no agenda for the trip or even thought about what I want to do. I paid for tickets to the park for three days, and we’ll probably spend the rest lounging in the hotel pool. No expectations whatsoever.

The broader economic and crypto markets are a dumpster fire. I don’t think I wrote much about the LUNA collapse last month. The news this last week has been about Celcius going insolvent, and now it looks like 3AC might be having issues as well. I’m personally surprised, but I still have funds on PerpFi, which is kinda strange because the spot market breached my liquidation price several times over the last couple days. I haven’t looked into it. Fifty thousand dollars, already down some thirty K. It’s just a number on the screen to me at this point. After getting liquidated on my ETH position earlier this year and losing money in the CREAM hack I’m already acting like these funds are lost.

I’ve been staying fit. I haven’t been jogging much, but did manage to get to the rock gym three times this last week. I went last Friday by myself, brought the kids on Saturday — and their cousins — and went again on Tuesday, where I pulled a small muscle in my hip that bothered me very much so. It’s mostly better, and I’m hoping I can squeeze another session in today, but I’m not sure it’s going to work with everything going on to get ready. I was also looking up gyms near Disney, you know, in case we get bored and want to go get a session in. Missus thinks I’m crazy, but I might bring my climbing shoes with me.

Work is going well. The team is working, and I’m trying to fill the gaps, writing marketing materials — or attempting to — and doing some CI/CD work to integrate testing into our Github process. I spent some time working on that yesterday but have a lot of work to do today and tomorrow for the end of sprint.

We also got new neighbors in the house catty-corner. A Puerto Rican Navy couple. They’ve got three kids close in age to ours, so I’m looking forward to becoming friends with them. That will have to wait until we get back from our trip.

Sleep, glorious sleep

Yes, the insomnia is over, I decided not to read in bed last night and turned out the lights right after laying down. It was the right call. I got a whopping 6h30m of sleep, and woke up — or was woken rather — feeling more refreshed than I have all week. It’s like anything is possible.

Yesterday’s cross-functional feedback meeting for the dao went well, it’s been a while since I came out of one of them without any disappointment, so that’s good. Things are moving forward and the end is in sight; at least for our version zero. I’ve been reading some books and have actually been doing my damn job now that I’m healthy and catching up on my responsibilities, so I’m looking forward to righting the ship and getting things back on track.

Caig Roeschel said that if you don’t have an “I used to do X, but now I do Y” story then you’re not growing as a leader. I wasn’t comfortable delegating when I came onboard and started managing a team, I’m used to being the one doing everything, but coming into the team and having people who were more experienced with their craft — and frankly more professional — intimidated me and I didn’t want to micromanage them or presume to tell them how to do their job. Now I’m a bit more comfortable in my skin, as far as my role as the project owner for this, and so I’ve started taking more of a hands on approach to prioritizing work for the team. I own the vision, and I need to direct the team as to what the priorities are. We’re coming down to the wire. I also have to credit the fact that I have lots of colleagues outside of my team, other project managers that are helping me get my shit together and are holding me accountable. It’s all very chill, but setting the tone or culture is important here and we’ve got a tight-nit group that I’m spending one-on-one time with.

Outside of work, I’ve been trying to focus on my parenting as well. I’m reading Parent Like It Matters. I’m not doing the exercises or anything, but I think it’s important to focus on my role as parent as well. Elder and I came at odds a few days ago and I had to ground her. She needs to understand that if I give her a chore to do, then she doesn’t get to whine and complain. I think part of the problem is that chores vary from day to day, and there’s always this inherent comparing that they do when I give one of them certain jobs to do. It even gets to the point where they’ll fight over easy chores to try and get out of doing what I really need done. Mostly this is Elder because I have her do the more advanced stuff and she’ll try to cut in on whatever Younger is doing.

So yesterday I just gave them jobs. Elder is to feed the cats dry food in the morning. Younger gives them wet food at dinner. Younger’s job is to clear and set the table before dinner, clear and wipe it down after. Elders job is to dry dishes and put them away. Basically I’m tired of them sitting at the table, eating a third plate of food, or running off to the bathroom for twenty minutes to get out of helping. They think they can do one task and be done while Missus and I wash dishes, put away food, and scoop the cat box. So I grounded Elder, let Younger go off to play after she did her job, and made Elder assist with me with cooking dinner.

She didn’t like it, but I need to teach her my work ethic. She got citizen of the month at class, and everyone I know comments about how well-behaved she is, but when she comes home she bickers with her sister and argues with me about everything, and I’m fucking tired of it.

Yesterday was pretty good though. We did have a bit of a challenge when I sent Younger off. Elder wanted me to make her sister wait, but I reminded her that she was grounded and wasn’t going anywhere until I excused her, and I had no intention of doing that until she fixed her attitude and did what I ask.

It’s basically at the point where that if I ask them to do something and they respond negatively, I’ll think of something else to make them do.

I wasn’t a complete asshole though. Elder and I did have some fun. She’d been singing some song, something with silly lyrics to the tune of Smashmouth’s All Star, and it got me thinking about how I used to make up lyrics when I was little. So I decided to introduce her to Weird Al. She loved it. I actually showed her Michael Jackson’s Bad video before Al’s Fat, and her reaction to the Bad video was something else. She was like what in the world is this? and I had to explain to her the context of the video. I guess she thought it was cringe or something. Maybe I’m just old. But she did laugh out loud at Fat, and we went on to watch a few more vids before dinner. The rest of the evening went well.

She’s still grounded though.

She woke up early because she had an accident, and started her laundry, then got on her computer and started studying for school. I wound up getting earlier than I wanted to, but since it is so nice out I went and took Younger to school on her bike. I asked Elder if she wanted to ride, but she went all ugghh on me, complaining that she couldn’t ride with her backpack on. Can’t win them all.

Today is lovely though, and I’m rested, so I’m planning on taking an afternoon trip to the rock gym. I’ll bring the kids — and maybe their cousins — tomorrow. Sunday is a busy day, but tomorrow is wide open. But before that, I’ve got a list of things I want to do today, and daylight is burning.

Mah Birthday

Yesterday marked the completion of my forty-third trip around the sun. It was also the first day I felt well in a week, following an overzealous Memorial Day celebration followed by influenza courtesy of Younger. I only managed five hours of sleep due to a combination of a late bedtime and taking an hour to fall asleep, so my first task for the day was taking a nap.

The girls greeted me with my first present when I woke up, a black t-shirt with a baby Yoda that said It’s My Birthday. I put it to good use during my meetings during work. I had a few meetings and a work session with a colleague, but I wasn’t productive. I wound up picking up a book on product management that was available on Kindle Unlimited, so I started reading that in the late afternoon between bouts of Tarkov.

I felt well enough to go for a run after the girls got home. It was in the mid eighties and I wasn’t fully recuperated according to my Whoop and wound up running 2.5 miles @ 11 min + pace. That was down quite a bit from my last jog, pre flu, when it was significantly cooler and I broke a 10-min mile for the first time in ages.

Dinner was a smorgasborg of leftovers. Our neighbors came over for cake. Missus had bought a bunch of inch-high Star Wars figurines and set them out among the plates, and we had an Oreo cookie ice cream cake. The kids played afterward and D. and I played the Dune board game, which we hadn’t played in like a year, so most of the time was spent going over the rules. I beat him in three turns, about what happened last time.

Missus was tired after all that, so she went to bed right after the kids went down. I decided to get myself a copy of Dune: Spice Wars and played that for way too long. I went to bed after 11, and it took another hour for me to fall asleep, so here I am again with five hours of sleep. No nap was forthcoming this morning though, I laid down and just couldn’t sleep.

I’m going to continue reading the product management book and force myself to actually implement what it teaches. There’s a lot that needs to be done to prepare for the dao launch; we’ve got about two months to prepare everything and I own this project so it’s success is on my shoulders.

No excuses

Trying my damndest to make today a good day. I got plenty or rest last night — my Whoop is showing my vitals at 60%. I’m still sick, but I don’t know how much of it is Nyquil hangover or what. My body is mostly back to normal, I can breathe but my throat and sinuses are a bit off.

I got Elder to school. Younger is home today, Missus is taking care of her. I’ve done my morning meditation, and I’m going to actually get to work after I write this and do my schedule. I’ve got no meetings today, but need to coordinate some things with the team and do some writing, updating proposals, writing requirements and user stories. I’ve got a lot to make up for.