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Shades
Everything in between
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1st-Jan-2018 12:50 pm - 365 Days Around and About
It seems so odd to be still writing after all these days of avoiding writing here. Social media being what it is has made it much easier in my life to post even cryptic snippets of what is running through my mind.
However, as I sit here, twelve hours and thirty minutes into the new year, I was wondering what I would approach in general. The world had changed too far for me to stop anything. What I can do in my corner is to keep pushing through the things that I've been working on.
I finished parts of things that I never thought I would begin. And now I have a better place to stand.
I returned for Homecoming at my university. That was so fun, though, I would have liked to spend more time with the students. But I'm also not a fan of the new brick pattern on the main part of campus.

So what am I sitting on for 2018?
Well I'm going to try and get a new job. Which means getting a second car. The process for getting a new car was something that took me by the seat of my pants. I do miss the little red "five wheel money pit", and there was some guilt about letting the car go, but far better to let the car go before it became too expensive to keep. Meanwhile I am waiting to hear when the car is officially sold for the reciept.

I have three books that could go to publication right now. I hesitate on the books with historical facts due to the issues of that surround bias when it comes to history.
I will be taking the company to Cal-TASH which is the most important bit. Last year we went to SXSWedu and while that was fun, it was horribly expensive and well, I had to do that once. But there were more conferences than ever this past year and that was the best thing I could have possibly done.

So the world keeps spinning, but I can't stop the rhythm of the world. And for now, that is enough.
2nd-Sep-2017 08:46 am - What Happened...
It's two days later and I can still see the event as if it were happening. I know this is a problem, and if you didn't know, I've been working on this for a very long time in my life and sometimes it's better and sometimes, like Thursday night, it's not at all.

Some facts you may need to know:

  • I started a credentialling process this summer. I agreed to 120 hours of lecture and activity, two weeks which would overlap with my regular work schedule. While most folks are freaked out about taking on a new teaching position, I was secured in my current position and wasn't too worried about that.

  • Thursday was the final class and final events for all 120 hours in a 3 hour class.

  • Thursday was the anniversary of the funeral for a former student of mine who had committed suicide last year only five days earlier. I will state again later that I did wake up funky Thursday morning and thanks to my social media reminders, I remembered a little later that morning and was able to actualy label the reasons why I did not understand my funk earlier

I made it through my 8 hour work day all right. I didn't yell at anyone, though I probably should have. I also had a wardrobe emergancy with a stain on my clothes that I didn't want to subject myself to in my final for a class in a program that I really wanted to pass. I ran home got changed and then went to class.

As usual, I was one of the first students in class. This class was taught by the Center's Director. So I had to pull it together and be polite, pulled together, and follow directly all the rules given. To be fair, the last three weeks though have not been taught by the director and our instructors let a few things slide, allowing some of us to check out while in class which was useful as the stress started amping up across the ten weeks. But not on Thursday night. Director's class, we were going to have to stay on our best behavior. Additionally, some folks were allowed to be late because of district required issues (Back to School Night).

So we were all pretty amped up. I could tell, but did it anyway.

I went third in my pod with my presentation. This is where I nail my presentation. I pretty much give it my all. The classroom was pretty noisy, but I don't think it bothered me. Did it, nailed it moved on. Had our ten minute break and then we went outside as a group with all instructors from the program. Well hell.

In a large group circle, we were asked to step forward with the name of a student who we felt either catapulted us on our journey or would benefit from our becoming a teacher. This is where things got bad for me. I had no more spoons. And there was no 'opt out' in the middle of class, no way to indicate I could not participate because I will tell you the class would have misinterpreted the reasoning. I couldn't escape. There was just one name on my mind. Whether that name was the reason or not, even with having contacted nearly 2000 students in my career: that's the only name on my mind. I have no other choice, I can't think otherwise.

Then to make things more fun, "Take the time now to thank each other or the process..." And of course everyone cried here. The two men (one instructor one student) were not inattendance due to their Back to School Nights, which probably increased the estrogen festival.

Yeah I was a little teary. But not for the reasons that were assumed. I survived and headed back to class, trying to pull myself together to reach the next activity.
A peer leaned over and saw I was crying and then called notice to the whole class that I had cried. I did growl at them to stop but the class then cheered. Nope. No more spoons.

I couldn't hear anything but "tell them." So next thing I knew I asked them to back off because of I was in a bad head space due to a former student's funeral a year ago. I got my space, but not how I wanted to leave nor with attention.

This stressed my night out further than I wanted to. In fact, I ended up with a scant four hour sleep between Thursday and Friday including apology emails to the Director and my class.

Nobody asks an introvert or ambiverts how they want to escape. Few people, and even though we were together for 120 hours, recognize introvert behavior. And in education today, introversion is treated as a disease, that eventually you'll be fine and it'll be okay. I have some follow up with the Director. I don't know if opportunity arises when I need it to if I will apply to finish my program with this group.
Few people recognize the significance anymore of blogging, let alone this title for this particular blog. But then again, if you knew, then you wouldn't have to ask.

This last year was the kernal of hope. Not just for social equality but also fro history, that years from now, the paths paved that were broken by years of hard work would have been reached. Instead, I'm sitting on a tenious future, albiet one of more emotional reaction than one from a place that can make logical decisions. I fear for my friends and allies in ways I never thought I'd worry about them and the worry by itself is almost itself a dead weight causing me to want to curl up and worry about a world I just do not have the capacity single handedly to fix.

I've also thought a lot about the remainder of my life in this world as it is. I have no intention of leaving this mortal coil, so please don't be alarmed, but there are places and travels I have yet to accomplish, for a lot of reasons, but the things I want to do are equally important to me.

My professional life has taken a detour. For years I stood firm, I didn't need the degrees. I didn't need the certifications. And then this year, an option opened up and I decided to take it. I'm doing the work, and amazingly doing it well (knock on wood because I have two weeks left with no dead week, which sucks because I really could use one)

  1. I've tackled traveling for business, it's time to travel more for pleasure. There are four cities remaining on my list of places I wish to have stood once and marveled at the nature of cities. Then I want to move on to a few continents, more for the culture and not so much for the experience. But I would have to give up time. And this is what troubles me the most.

  2. I want to travel with friends. This one is harder, because I value my space. As I've gotten older, this is something I found that I want to value. One day soon though.

  3. I have a list of things I want to photograph in my life. I know a million people have done it well with tons more experience than I have, but I'd like a crack at that.

  4. I want the company I've worked hard to help stay afloat keep building on itself and providing avenues to those who need it the most.

  5. I want to continue to help make good in my little corner of the world. It's all to easy to remember that all those events are "over there" and ignore those events, but I know if I continue to make good in my little corner of the world, it'll help start take the edge off the sadness. It's not enough to me to just be aware, it's time to make changes, even small ones.

Where I've gone is only going to inform the path as I continue along. We will find success and failures of all sizes along this way. On the horizon there will be still more challenges and changes ahead and I only know that I can only possibly try and nothing less will be possible.
28th-May-2017 10:00 am - What Is Going On?
I had to find something on my blog archives because it perfectly described a character I've been working on and this caused me to go through this blog looking for the quizes I used to take to help fill time on my blog. I suspect though it is a quiz I did more than lock, perhaps post to another account.

But I also know how  horrible I've been with my personal life documenting here. Though for the first time in a long time I've posted more than once in the same month. It's pretty shocking actually.

So some basic catch up: my health is in the tank, but I'm also probably not really helping it along. I should be more vigalant, but I am getting to the point that I'm a lot more concerned than not and all my attempts seem emotionally futile currently.

I need to work on my kindness. I have noticed lately it's harder than necessary. But I do not wish to be cruel. I know that's probably one of the reasons why when I recently tried asking someone out that contributed to their rejection of me. Admittedly, I didn't have a plan, but I also knew that it was near to a late friend's birthday who had always encouraged me to ask someone out and I never got to do it.

I'm working on a lot of things. This week I find out if I can start a program in the middle of the month. Hopefully I can.
16th-May-2017 09:27 pm - Ever A Brother
From the outside, I don’t think I am very outward in the statement of being a Brother. It’s probably harder because I’m not in the industry related to the House I pledged. I suppose it’s different for social fraternity members. There are not many reasons I get to wear my badge and guard pin, but I appreciate having them.
But all fraternities and sororities have a promise to all members to be life long members. And when I joined APX, that lesson held deeply. I consider myself a loyal person being loyal was something I could do.
On Sunday, a Brother passed rather tragically. He had a brain aneurysm. Brother Sabo was also unique for my experience, as he was older due to the fact he had left the university and returned, but there were many older brothers in the house at the time who had re-selected majors. But Brother Sabo returned to Watt and Harris Halls to work at design.
He was introduced to me, “This is your brother.” He waved. He would then spend the next few years, probably never spoke more than a few dozen words to me, but whenever I would be sent on a mission to find the inactive brothers, he would usually come when asked.
After graduation, Brother Sabo returned to his home country, Japan. He would join social media and I connected back, nothing formal, not like most of my brothers, but like most of my brothers, it wasn’t so much the empty promise but the connection we share because we all went to the same university. We all knew what pledging meant to us, no one person could tell us otherwise.
And now, he, like many others, were called to the Heavenly Architect far too soon. It isn’t great for us, we aren’t able to all drop and run to Japan tomorrow for the memorial service later this week.
But I will remember tonight, and the rest of this week, a kind man. A brother who knew that steadfastness was an attribute that outshone many others when he was shy or unable to find the English words that would make the most sense.
He above all else was my brother. For the brothers that I never will meet, and have yet to encounter, I hope as an alumnus, that I am the one who answers when asked. I hope that as an alumnus that my Brothers know they can always contact me.
 
Where 2015 spent the year in several different cities, 2016 never saw me leave a three county area.

I do not know really if 2016 was the worse year the way I feel like it was. I hope I learn to forget the unending pain that I was asked to carry or share with others. I will have to say there was a lot going on I was not allowed to talk about outside of a therapist's office.

And when I was able to put those things aside, there were some small celebrations: publishing for the company, sending information to the US Copyright Office, and the ego boosting passing of the CSET. I still think about the process of taking the test from time to time.

I've spent a lot of this year in fear. Fear of things real and imaginary. The real fears are the ones hardest to vanquish. I do not not have the strength I had twenty years ago now to deal with those fears. And fears of things I thought I had put away have resurfaced and that stopped me in the tracks.

So what's next for 2017?
Getting my darned act together to apply to any credetialing program.
Continue to build my professional life.
Become better at writing. I read something I wrote yeares ago now, it is actually my highest rated story in online publication and I realized how horrible my transitions between chapters were. It felt jarring and I know I need to get better at that.
Have more time to laugh. 2016 took away a lot of my smiles for a lot of deep personal reasons. Reasons, again, I could not blog.
Remember my recovery from all the things in my life is never going to about reaching a finish line, there is no finish line in the recovery I have.
24th-Nov-2016 12:58 pm - Another 50,000 words in 23 days

I finished NaNo last night by 11:30. I frantically type through the last 6000 words mostly because by this point the story was causing pain.

I have forgotten the basics of writing. Beyond just discipline of writing. Things I need to consider include archetypes, I need those characters because no individual, even reluctant soloists have someone or something they can turn to, even a plant.

I have also forgotten themes. Basic ones like character vs character, character vs self, character vs group. These foster the story's purpose. I may have even said this last year and I am trying to find my feet again.

25th-Sep-2016 08:03 pm - 2016 Fall TV review
So not all the TV shows I can get on standard OTA stations have been released, but what I have seen, I've liked a lot. So what am I watching?

Big Bang Theory, Though in the last few years, I've been mildly upset about the gender balance coming into play. Its important that the genders balance out but not for the reasons of everyone needs a pairing.

NCIS and NCIS New Orleans, NCIS has been a staple show for 14 years. That's pretty impressive. Love Gibbs and his rules and his team. I'm not super crazy about the newest members of Gibb's team right now. Which goes to NCIS New Orleans where they sent Brody off without a warning. Okay I really liked the eye candy there. Whatever reason they chose to send Brody off into the sunset with such a little fanfare, it was sad.

Marvel's SHIELD: Okay I stayed with you through the whole first two seasons, we're in season five now, I've suffered some dumb plot points. Skye now Daisy, now whatever her name is now is really upsetting. I even hung in there on the crazy planet and the "thing" that came from the blue planet. Stop being stupid and come around to remember entertainment.

Speechless: I had been looking forward to this show. Giving the use of AAC primetime and parents of teenagers with disabilities is important.

Modern Family: I enjoy this show, and I've had enjoyed it for a while. I like how life changes for the families.

Dr. Ken: One might easily try to ignore this show as over the top. Firstly, the main character, Dr. Ken is still an able doctor for  general medicine. I find kinship in the show and Fresh off the Boat, the "Asian youth" experience is something that is very specific to Asian American youth. My life was no exception. Both this show and Fresh off the Boat have jokes that resonate very deeply.

Designated Survivor, A fun show so far. Little deep on the conspiracy theory, but it promises to be good.

So of the shows that have not started yet, 2 Broke Girls, the show that started the first year I started being a business owner, Scorpion a fun thrill ride with a lot of logic, Jane the Virgin another cultural experience, Fresh off The Boat mentioned earlier, The Flash fun but they better get themselves pulled together, Arrow a fun show super hero not so much, Code Black an answer to the missing group on ER but honest about medicine, The Simpsons I love this show, and Madame Secretary a honest look at the world of international relationships.
I spend a lot of time on TV, a little too much, but TV is a lot of other things.
I make it a point to stress to my students that the 'State of the Union' or the 'State of the State' is a speech given by specific heads of the executive branch (Federal and State respectively) that details the direction of the next year. And that each executive actually only ever gets eight total years to produce such a speech. And here we are, thirteen years of tradition. Like I have a mini-dictatorship over my own life. Which I will admit I do, after all, it is my life.

So looking to what has been accomplished:

  • more publishing

  • more public speaking

  • The CSET, for a while, even when taking the test, I seriously doubted my compentency. Turns out I'm probable enough to at least past tests.


What we need to return to:

  • traveling. Especially to places with sky scrapers. It's not that I have ever really liked being 80 stories in the air as much as sometimes, they create opportunties that wouldn't otherwise exist. There is an inherent beauty in the world that has defined scale and unfamiliarity.

  • more publishing I have so many books in list prepared to go, but I need to make certain they're ready.


Things I will need to do:

  • Apply to San Diego State to get two classes out of the way before applying for another program up here in Sacramento

  • The GRE


Five years out: I want to have at least started denting a Ph.D. program. This would probably mean giving up the job I currently have and that's a little scary to me considering I don't make a lot at the job I currently have but it's a reliable source of income. Actually the whole process of returning for grad school is a little daunting to me. There are elements of the process I know I would appreciate and there are elements that I just don't believe are relevent to me.

But despite knowing my fears and nearly wearing them on my sleeve, I do know this as the sun comes up over the edge on the east, that the world continues to revolve around the sun. Tomorrow is always there, and there's a new challenge. I find a lot of hope in trying to get to that next day.

The blog continues as time does too.
Thank you. Be well and goodnight.
If you think I would sit silent for a moment longer over the deaths that have occurred this month or even this year, you are dearly wrong.
If you think that the deaths of any one minority group is justified: you are horribly, horribly wrong.

There's only one thing that matters, is that we address mass death or any sort. We address mental health. We address the culture of shame for being different. We address and change attitudes.

You don't have to like what is "gay". You have to realize that a person who is on the LGBTIQQAA spectrum is still a person. Still has rights in the United States. They still want a chance to succeed and fail at all the things that folks have been doing for hundreds of years. And want to do so without the long history of perscution that exists.

I am floored by the idea that this happened *again*. That the death of the children, the children, of Sandyhook weren't enough to change policies.

What do I want? I want the policies to change. Your right, my right, to own a gun is only due to a regulated militia. Check the Second Amendment. Do I agree you should be able to own a gun, certainly. I grew up in the suburbs, but we were close to major rural areas. We still are very aware of coyotes coming into town and taking small animals or looking for places to hunt. I know people who own livestock and coyotes and other large predators, guns were a part of their life because it was needed.

Guns and gun ownerships may be rights but they are also a privledge.

In less traumatic and closer to my home, I'm burried with work. No one should be surprised, but it's preparing for a test over two days in one month from today I'm standing. I should know what sections I need to retake. I'd like to know that I would have passed on the first run, but I'm still studying. Not as deep as I would have liked, but I'm preparing.

The end goal, if you've missed it, is a Ph.D. program. There are a lot more steps between this and my degrees in progress. But this is the first of many steps. I'm preparing the company for major updates. I'm working on seventeen million things that keep the company going.
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