One More Week

It just occurred to me that in a week, I’ll have 3 weeks without scheduled travel. I was looking forward to going to the beach with some of my family until I realized they wanted to do it during a trip to visit a friend for which I already had a flight scheduled.

My sister wanted help moving. She lives 10 hours away, and they had trouble with scheduling the new house closing, and helping her move entailed leaving to drive 10 hours the day after I landed at home from the first trip.

I got caught in the Delta mess. Getting home at 3 and spending happy hour with my friends turned into watching my original flight continue getting delayed until I asked to get rerouted. I got rerouted through Detroit. The flight I was rerouted to got delayed. So, I spent hours at the Detroit airport.

I sat at the bar telling everyone around me that I know how data centers work and the explanation that there was a power failure was bullshit. Someone next to me found an article saying the power company objected to the explanation and said their power never failed. Force Majeure my ass. It turns out the power failure was internal to Delta. Their fault. That I can believe.

If it’s something out of their control, they don’t need to compensate you. I would posit that a short power failure, had it happened, is something that can be predicted and compensated for. Data centers usually have several Internet providers, multiple power feeds, battery backups in the racks, battery backups as big as racks taking up rows of the data center, generators that have enough fuel for a week, etc. Oh, and making sure you don’t have a single geographical point of failure in your software is in your control too. Someone needs a wake up call. Most startups get this right these days.

My original flight landed in Atlanta at 11 pm with no possibility of a connection. It could have been worse. The people stuck in Atlanta were sleeping on cots if they were lucky enough for one to be available.

Anyway, I unpacked enough to go to sleep and made it to sleep by about 1. Mom called at 8. We hit the road to the sister’s by 10. 11 hours home in a week and a half.

I’ll be flying out to Pittsburgh for a programming conference in a couple days. Richard Stallman will be speaking. I’ll make sure not to miss him. It should be interesting.

My friend I went visit before going help the sister move in seems to be going the opposite direction as me. He’s well on the way to having a hoarder house.

With things that happened after Katrina, I had the pleasure of crawling through one with no power that was wet from a damaged roof trying to recover some of my things from childhood. Most of it just rotted. We were stepping on our things and they were just slush.

My dad has a large external garage full of his crap and his house is pretty full. He sometimes says if someone would just give him some money to empty the garage completely he’d take it. I grew up with over consumption. That’s why I’ve been questioning it so much lately.

Nobody around me has ever tried mnmilism. As often happens with me, I got quite attracted to the idea of taking it to an extreme and then settled on I don’t need to throw out everything. But, I did start throwing out. I got half a room back yesterday. I had never finished moving some clothes out of boxes in half of my bedroom because the closet was full. Goodwill got 95% of those clothes. I vacuumed and dusted that half of the room.

I had a plastic tote filled with old crap from when I ran a computer business. That’s gone too. I have my eye on a couple more. I looked at it for years thinking I never touched it in all that time and I wouldn’t miss it if it was just gone. I saved a couple of office supplies that may last until I go through them, pick the couple of each item I need, and give away the rest of those. I remember I have boxes of binder clips in the closet among other things. I don’t remember the last time I used one.

So, seeing my friend’s house got me thinking I need to work on getting mine in order. I’m tired of the air conditioner in my apartment being substandard among other things. Every time I move, I marvel at how much crap I have that I didn’t even remember. I have at least 2 bookshelves full of old computer books I wouldn’t notice missing. You know how hard those are to move? My new goal is to start getting that stuff out of my life. An old office chair and a couch will be going next week.

I’ve been quiet here because I’ve been quite busy. Starting next Monday, I’ll be back to a normal routine for a few weeks. I think my “therapy” here and seeing how others around me have been living has helped me gain some perspective into my own life.

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