Reblog via ssweeny

“My husband plays the trumpet, which is a sort of loud pretzel originally invented to blow down the walls of fucking Jericho and, later, to let Civil War soldiers know it was time to kill each other in a river while you chilled eating pigeon in your officer’s tent twenty miles away, yet somehow, in modern times, it has become socially acceptable to toot the bad cone inside your house before 10:00 a.m. because it’s “your job” and your wife should “get up.” What a world! If one was feeling uncharitable, one might describe the trumpet as a machine where you put in compressed air and divorce comes out, but despite this—despite operating a piece of biblical demolition equipment inside the home every bright, cold morning of his wife’s one and only life—the trumpet is not the most annoying thing about my husband.”

— Lindy West: The Witches Are Coming, p. 122

I saw this quote floating around the internets a while back and as a husband and former trumpet player I knew I had to read this book.

I’m nearly done with it and so glad I picked it up.

Reblog via ssweeny

“Every single person with whom you work has a vastly different set of needs. They are chaotic beautiful snowflakes. Fulfilling these needs is one way to make them content and productive. It is your full-time job to listen to these people and mentally document how they are built. This is your most important job. I know the senior VP of engineering is telling you that hitting the date for the project is job number one, but you are not going to write the code, test the product, or document the features. The team is going to do these things, and your job is managing the team.”

“Managing Humans”, page 6

Stylized grayscale image of two billboards in front of an old strip mall. One billboard shows the word "OBEY" and the other "CONSUME" in a reference to the John Carpenter film "They Live"

It seems like the hip new thing is for apps to give you a fancy recap of your usage at the end of the year. I thought I’d consolidate a few of them here for posterity.


Being an old fart I tend to buy music rather than stream it. I self-host a Plex server with the media I’ve accumulated over the years and my default music player is the better-than-the nostalgia-bait-name Plexamp client. This is what I used it to listen to in 2022:

Nothing surprising here. Klaus Schulze, the Hades soundtrack, and (oddly enough) Black Tie White Noise are quite good background music for work.


For podcasts I’ve been a long-time user and supporter of Pocket Casts. Here’s what it had for me:

I tend to listen to podcasts while driving, taking walks, and doing chores around the house. I’m curious if this ranking is according to hours listened, because nearly all of these podcasts release weekly, and individual episodes of The Flop House are typically over an hour long while the rest tend to be in the 20-30 minute range. Old Gods of Appalachia is a new favorite of mine. Lovecraftian horror set in old mining towns in the Appalachian mountains. Definitely worth checking out if that sounds interesting to you.

Video Games

I found a bit of time to play games last year, especially once I managed to acquire a Steam Deck:

Last summer when we had interns on my team at work we did some team building video game nights. I had never played Counter Strike before then, and I have no doubt the team enjoyed scoring headshots on their boss. I introduced them to Rocket League and it remains a favorite. Very late in the year I picked up both Strays and Tunic, which I expect will show up in the summary for next year.

Now that console shortages have eased up we picked up a PS5 as well, and I’ve been able to spend a bit of time with it too.

Spider-Man and Spider-Man: Miles Morales dominated my PS time last year, and I have no regrets.

I read a bunch in 2022, but not as much as I’d like. I tend to switch between ebooks and dead trees pretty evenly so I don’t have a fancy app to give me a summary of everything. I did start using The StoryGraph as an alternative to Goodreads, so hopefully I’ll keep up with tracking and have a nice summary for next year.


Despite all the above I did manage to get off the couch every once in a while and get some exercise. I started biking across the city to the office on occasion, I take frequent walks, and I even managed to get into a kayak a few times.

I’m hoping this year to get more reading done, get a bit more exercise, and to do a bit more creating after all this consumption. I have a few ideas for projects and hopefully I’ll find the motivation to get moving on them.

Header image from Flickr user Tau Zero used under Creative Commons license.

Nachos with pickled vegetables
Nachos with pickled vegetables

After a long hiatus I’m back on my Frankenlunch kick. Today I had to get rid of some pickled vegetables I’d made for some bánh mì sandwiches last week, so I decided to do the easiest possible thing and throw them on some nachos.
This one honestly turned out pretty weird. The cold, tangy veggies mixed with the warm, gooey and also tangy chips made for some texture profiles that were not altogether unpleasant, but certainly not something I’d serve to someone else.