Resolution Progress 2017: End

(Original ; First Quarter ; Half ; Third-Quarter ; Final)

Well, I knew the goals were going to be ambitious. It is still disappointing that I did not meet them. I have said that the real reason I can read so much is that my time is my own, so I can do whatever I want outside of work. That meant reading a ton. The whole having a family thing eroded much of that free time and much of what remained I spent catching up on TV shows filling up my DVR.

Let’s see just how bad it was…

Resolution Progress 2017: Third Quarter

(Original ; First Quarter ; Half ; Third-Quarter ; Final)

For the third quarter, I should have progressed about 75%. So, let’s see where I am.

Resolution Progress 2017: First Half

(Original ; First Quarter ; Half ; Three-Quarters ; Final)

For the first half, I should have progressed about 50%. So, let’s see where I am.


Luna, the cat, likes to hang out in this window.

2017-03-05 11.44.20

Since she is young, she runs and jumps up to the seat and jumps again to the back. As she does, I stick my hand out and let it glide across her back. She gets to watch what I call “cat tv.” I get a brief pet out of her.

And… she is extremely disappointed the bag of pecan pieces are not treats. No, disappointed is not the word… Uh… It is more “you deceptive asshole!”

Resolution Progress 2017: First Quarter

(Original ; First Quarter ; Half ; Third-Quarter ; Final)

For the first quarter, I should have progressed about 25%. So, let’s see where I am.

Resolutions 2017

( Original ; First Quarter ; Half ; Third-Quarter ; Final)

  • Read 52 books. The 75 goal was ambitious even for me, so life made it way harder than I expected. Back to the normal goal.
    • Hit 20,000 pages. 
    • Read politically. Pick at least ten books about political theory or events.
    • Read on decision making and influence. Pick at least ten books on behavioral economics or psychology.
    • African American and mixed study. Pick at least ten books on African-American or mixed experiences.
    • Read the book and (re-)watch the movie or TV series. Pick at least 5 books.
    • Finish the book series.
      • Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children #2-3.
  • Exercise. The ultimate goals are reaching the “essential benchmarks” of bench 1.5x body weight (360 lb), squat 2x bodyweight (480), deadlift 2.5x bodyweight (600). I am expecting to achieve about 5 pounds a month, for about 50 a year with some leeway.
    • Bench 290 pounds (1RM). I ended 2016 at 240 1RM.
    • Squat 360 pounds (1RM eq). I ended 2016 at 310 1RM.
    • Deadlift 425 pounds (1RM eq). I ended 2016 at 375 1RM.

Resolution Progress 2016: End

OK, the year is completely done, so here is where I am with each resolution.

  • Read 75 books. Done.
    • Hit 25,000 pages. Final count is 25,361. Done.
    • Finish series already started. (25 of the 75 books.)
  • Lifting.
    • Bench 240 pounds (1RM equivalent). The actual 1RM that I did during this period was 240. Done.
    • Squat 300 pounds (1RM eq). The actual 1RM that I did during this period was 310. Done.
    • Deadlift 335 pounds (1RM eq). The actual 1RM that I did during back in July was 365. Done.
    • After getting to these, I will shift to reaching the “essential benchmarks” of bench 1.5x body weight (375 lb), squat 2x bodyweight (500), deadlift 2.5x bodyweight (625).
  • Drop to 20% body fat. No progress. Two years in a row I’ve nor really tried hard towards this one. Probably a sign.
  • Do the White and Orange trails in under an hour. Christmas Eve Eve, I made one last shot. I made it 1 hour 5 minutes and 3 seconds.
  • Attend 12 social events when invited. I am going to count having a party as 3. And going to a movie with friends as 1/2. I hosted a party in April which is 3. I attended a  couple movies with friends in a group. And then a cocktail party, birthday party for a 20 year old cat, Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day, meet the baby, Thanksgiving x2, Christmas x2, and after brunch. That puts me at 16 which exceeds the goal. I feel exhausted just counting all that.

(First Quarter, First Half)

Noisy Coworkers

Working in a cube farm, my ears perked up to an NPR story about how other people are distracting.

“In general, if a sound is coming from another person, it’s much more disturbing than when it’s coming from a machine,” Alan Hedge at Cornell says, because, as social beings, humans are attuned to man-made sounds. He says overheard conversations, as well as high-pitched and intermittent noises, also draw attention away from tasks at hand.

Of course, open offices are worse. We are not there. (Yet!) And the plans for filling in more spaces are not leveraging open offices.

I have heard many of these like the coughing, sneezing, fingernail clippers, bizarre ringtones, and especially conversations. I have been the culprit for coughing, sneezing, and very loud conversations. Pretty sure I am noisier than most of those around me.

fidget_cube_midnight_grandeThe new workstation keyboards in the cubefarm are much louder than the prior ones. I can hear these when before I could not. Of course, the former coworker who brought his own Logitech to work was known for his very loud typing. I’d thought it was just him. Nope. I now know it always was the keyboard.

The Fidget Cube pictured right is designed to allow people to fidget without clicking their pens. That funny enough is not a problem I’ve had to hear.

We do so much stuff over email or tickets or chat that phone calls are not very common. If I get one, then it almost certainly is a robocall or a marketer or follow-up to post conference spam because I deleted the emails.

Great headphones are how I hide from these distractions. There are fewer and fewer places to hide from others as the organization grows.

The interesting thing is these things kill productivity. They distract us from getting work done. Though, at the same time, when I overhear a conversation that I feel the need to contribute, I have involved myself and helping resolve the situation. Maybe the coworker who left lozenges on my desk was being helpful?

Social Minimalism

Listening to C.G.P.Grey talk about too much stuff in a room making it difficult due to the visual noise. I agree. But I also have an issue with chatter. Lots and lots of people talking over each other bothers me.

The inability to follow all of them is part of what I dislike about them. One-on-one conversation? Sure. A bunch of strangers talking? Okay. Apparently I can tune them out. But, people I know talking? My brain refuses to as easily tune them out.

Maybe one reason why I prefer social media is that I can follow the conversations in an asynchronous multi-tasking way. They can persist longer and cite sources and be better thought out. There are all things I love.