Cavier & PBR

March 8th, 2014

I have been giving a lot of thought to class lately as well as money. Mostly how the two relate after a conversation I had last month sometime. The context and content of the conversation are ultimately unimportant, really all they would serve to do is paint me to be an insensitive jackass for talking about somebodies situation. So instead I am going to talk about the realizations I have made recently. Here is the big one: Class is a lot more than the money that you actually have physically in your pocket. Its why those lotto winners always seem to end up bankrupt 5 years down the line (although I am sure they enjoyed their monster truck or whatever). They might suddenly have upper class money but not have the tools to understand how money actually works. Its also why you can be earning sub 50k and still be solidly ‘middle-class.’ What does all of this really mean in true day to day life? Almost nothing at all. But its something for me to keep in my back pocket and use to my advantage somewhere along the way. And yes, I do consider myself solidly middle-class.

House hunting is progressing. In terrify lurches and stumbles. It’s difficult to contemplate spending this sort of scratch simply because it is so opposite from how I generally live my life. I spent some time today going over my current budget with a much finer toothed comb than I normally use and realized just how much money I have wasted over the years simply by virtue of not having a budget. To say nothing of other money that I have wasted in various ways over the years but whatever. Whats more important is making sure to actually stick with the budget now as well as redo the budget when I do purchase something. Don’t get me wrong, its obvious that I have done ok so far. If you have the money to even consider putting a down payment out there you have obviously done ok. But I am realizing that I have champagne taste and beer budget. Or perhaps caviar & PBR.

I will also admit that looking at my budget recently has made me realize just how many opportunities I have had available simply due to my better half. Its making me look at things in a variety of new and exciting and sometimes vaguely uncomfortable ways. Not sure what, if anything, I am going to do about all that.

The trip to Oktoberfest is coming together. Or it will if I can ever manage to book a room for my time in Munich. That one item is the big sticker that i want to have taken care of before I book plane tickets. Thank god for AirBnB in many ways as it is has allowed me to get shot down by 4 or so people already! More importantly though is that if I can’t find a place soonish I might have to scrap the trip. Hotels for that time period are already in the grand+ range for a shitty place far from the actual fest. No thank you!

Otherwise things are pretty good. 8feet is generally still keeping up with what my expectations were when I started that side project. I seem to have abandoned the beer review site however. My heart isn’t really in trying to break into a saturated market and I am getting back into my better habits regarding alcohol anyway so it just doesn’t add up well. As much as I love beer and craft beer and local beer it doesn’t seem like a great use of my energy to try and spread the gospel in that manner. Instead I will probably just do the drink and be social and be merry thing. So… if you want to be an oddly specific URL let me know!

The weather is starting to get better here. We are breaking freezing, we are staying above 0 even at night… its a big long list of things that point towards a nice spring. Soggy but nice. Makes me look forward to getting the front fork taken care of on my bike and then get out there. Additionally however I am trying to stick with the whole ‘go to the gym’ thing (5 for the past 6 days. notbad.jpg) and that will be much nicer when the weather is better.

Other than that… not much doing I suppose.

A place for everything

February 1st, 2014

And everything in its place.

A while back I mentioned that was was working on a few minor projects. I needed some stuff to keep myself busy etc and frankly I like having little projects around. So today I am letting one fly and putting it out there. 8feet.me is, at its simplest, a photoblog. Not even a particularly good one to be honest. But the point of it isn’t to be good, its to do. Instead it is to get out and see new things, to share things and to look at things through a different lens. I am supposed to update it pretty regularly and it will most likely be random ass cell phone shots but who knows what it will evolve into. I would recommend if you do follow it to actually subscribe to via RSS in the event that I do daily updates. Of course there is a good arguement to subscribe to RSS for idoru as well. So there you have it, one project out in the wild. Who cares that its kind of a shitty one man instagram rip off. It shouldn’t interfere with my unscheduled idoru updates however.

Of course I am doing this two days after I blew the cap off my data plan so who knows how viable it is until that resets in a few days. Something weird happened with my phone where it got stuck in some sort of crazy map search for like 2 hours before I noticed… Whatever.

I am trying to keep myself to a more rigid schedule than normal right now. Which is odd because it actually allows me more ‘free time’ so to speak since I am leaving myself entire blocks of time where I don’t schedule stuff. Hopefully it allows me to stick to the things I am tying to stick to, 8feet being one of them.

The trip to Oktoberfest is continuing in the planning stages. Honestly I am wondering if I can afford it with how expensive accommodations are in Munich during the fest. The tripping point is that I need to decide quite soon as the price for everything from hotels to airbnb rooms is going to do nothing but climb as the fest draws near. Its kind of a strange situation to be in since I am still planning on going but unless I move sooner rather than later I am going to be priced out of going. Much the opposite of the normal vacations that I take where things get cheaper as time draws close. At least airbnb in iceland is pretty cheap looking. Kind of anyway.

In other news, I reconnected with an old friend last week. I don’t think I had seen him more than perhaps once or twice since we had graduated high school. It was rather pleasant in a strange little way. I don’t suspect that we will be super close friends or anything, our paths have diverged rather a lot in the meantime. But I hope that he and I can maintain at least more regular contact then “once every decade.” We’ll see though, there is a certain amount of effort that it takes on both sides and he has to deal with the wife and child. Choices man.

Aside from that…. not a ton new going on right now. Which is probably ok.

Time to go

January 12th, 2014

So I have talked, a lot, about how I haven’t been that happy with my life in a lot of regards. Lots and lots of introspection happened really throughout the later part of November and the beginning of December and I started coming to some realizations. Really a lot of stupid basic things that I have known on one level or another for a long time but didn’t want to admit to myself because it would force me to confront that I was stagnating.

I had a rather negative experience, that’s what started everything. The exact circumstances aren’t that interesting if you aren’t involved directly beyond the fact that they sucked. But it has forced me to accept that I was stagnating and that I was …. not doing things that make me happy. I was comfortable which is another way of saying that I had accepted where I was and wasn’t working to change anything. That negative experience made me start thinking about what does matter to me and what is important. What would make me uncomfortable but also happy. Or if not happy at least interested again.

To that end I have started doing shit that I hadn’t been doing. For example…. In 2014 I am going skydiving. I don’t mean that in the sense that I am saying I am going skydiving and am not doing it. This jump is already paid for (I need to figure out how to redeem it but that’s a different problem). Nervous as hell about the idea of doing it? Yes. Doing a tandem jump because its safe and easy and I can just do it? Yes. Actually doing it? …. Yes. I am also basically sold on the prospect of going to Oktoberfest this year. In Munich. Don’t know a person there or anything but hey, it would be fun, its something I want to do and I have the money. More importantly its something I have wanted to do and for a variety of reasons I have avoided doing. So I am stepping out of the comfort zone and going there with a layover in Iceland on the way back for a few days. Who knows, maybe I will even wear lederhosen (which are stupid expensive I might add).

There are job interviews going on and the plan is still to buy a condo (Or something? Probably condo) this year and so forth. Non of that is changing… in fact its probably more intense now than it was when I was miserable and just wanted to walk away from everything. Instead though I am approaching stuff with a new sense of intentionality. If I want it than the question becomes how to get it.

I waited until the busy season at that job that I don’t care for was over before I wrote any of this. Its easy as hell to say these things and then start getting sucked into that comfort matrix again. Hell, it has happened to me a few times now, so I know how easy it is. And there is also a sense of accomplishment you get when you say that you are going to do something. I know that thing is real because I have been there. More than once in fact… but that’s the past, live and learn, just make sure you actually do.

I am also working on one or two other projects…. completely unrelated to idoru besides the fact that they are on the interwebs (or will be, someday soonish). One is about beer and the other is about both forcing and allowing myself to be creative and allowing myself to suck at it. Hopefully that will accomplish a threefold goal: 1)Get me out of the house and into new things/places 2)help me break my perfectionist streak 3) let me be creative again in any capacity. Its not ready for unveiling but the tentative name is 8feet. Expect an announcement on that at some point.

In more mundane news…. I am no longer working 60 hours a week minimum. I am back to enjoying some good beer here and there. I am playing a bit of video games but not as much as I might have guessed. I am reading and trying to read regularly again. I am back at the gym and despite how much it kind of sucks…. I also love it. I have had a few job interviews and am applying to more jobs. I am working my way out of comfort and towards where I want to be while enjoying it as I go.

Oh and that negative situation? We are working things out. Its taking work but we are. And I suppose that’s kinda the point. It takes work but it can be worth it if its something you want.