Being Mature

Editor’s Note: Not sure where this came from. It’s been sitting as a draft post for three years1. I think it may have come from How to be an Adult, by David Richo, which is a fantastic book.

  1. Face the facts
  2. Determine what’s not working
  3. Take responsibility for your actions and choices
  4. Make choices for yourself
  5. Acknowledge your emotions
  6. Say what needs to be said
  7. Acknowledge the authority you are beholden to
  8. Embracing what’s difficult
  9. Taking in/navigating the other perspectives in the room
  10. Opposite of being a victim of circumstance
  11. Knowing the difference between: didn’t, don’t want to, and can’t
  1. circa 2011/09/18  

Back to Alaska Airlines Plebs Status


I missed reaching Alaska Airlines MVP this year by 652 miles — not to be confused with the time I missed MVP Gold by 2000 miles. I thought about making a year-end milage-run, a process where you “[buy] a low-price airline ticket … and fly not because you want to go anywhere, but to earn redeemable miles and progress toward elite status on your preferred airline.”

Alaska_Airlines_Boeing_737-800_CThe benefit of MVP is free checked bags for myself and Rachel (when she flies with me), which can easily save us $50-$100 per a trip. I also would get first crack at awesome seats such as 6A/F and 17A/F.

If I had been on top of my game, I probably could have accrued the required miles for about $200, which is equivalent to 2-4 trips worth of baggage fees. Realistically, I think there will only be a couple of flights we take this year (Colorado in August, and maybe someplace warm in the spring). This kind of makes it a push in terms of value. Unfortunately, I left it to the last few weeks of the year and it was going to cost upwards of $400 to get a flight that worked with my schedule. C’est la vie.

I suppose the good news is that I’m not traveling as often…though I sometimes miss it.


What’s your Critical Level to Get Things Done

For me, it’s two.

I’ll often make decisions when some level reaches two.

If I need to email someone about something, I won’t email them if it’s just one thing. But I have to ask them about two or point things, I’ll do it.

If a request is made to add a feature, I may not add it if only one person requests it, but if I get two requests, then I usually do.


Stupid People, Stupid Questions, and the Lazyweb

  • Rants

Scott Adams has a great quote:

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions?

This quote came to mind as I was reading a post by Jeff Atwood on the word Lazyweb:

It’s hard to pin down the exact etymology of the word Lazyweb, but it seems to have one primary meaning:

1. Asking a question of an internet audience in the hopes that they will be able to find a solution that you were too lazy or inexperienced to find yourself.

I don’t mind Lazyweb requests, within reason. Contrary to popular belief, there is such a thing as a stupid question. It’s asked by people who failed to do even the most basic kind of research on their question before they asked. I’m not expecting everyone to read a 32 page document before asking a question, but at least cover the basics before casually deciding to make your problem everyone’s problem.

My wife can attest to my love of answering questions, especially engineering/technology questions. At the same time, one of my biggest pet peeves are questions which are asked simply because the asker has not done any level of work to answer the questions himself1.

For a while, I used to respond to such questions with my Larry and Sergey story. Ask me a lazyweb question sometime and I’ll tell you my story.

When I needed help from a professor in college, I learned to preface the question with a synopsis of what I had done thus far in my attempt to answer it. This seemed to help direct their answers more specifically to my particular failure of knowledge, as well as assure them that I wasn’t being lazy.

  1. please do not ask me what time it is, I’m pretty sure you have a cell phone with a clock on it 

In Greek legend, Icarus flew too close to the Sun,…

In Greek legend, Icarus flew too close to the Sun, and the heat melted his wings and he fell to his death. But “melting” is a phase change which is a function of temperature, a measure of internal energy, which is the integral of incident power flux over time. His wings didn’t melt because he flew too close to the Sun, they melted because he spent too much time there.

Visit briefly, in little hops, and you can go anywhere.