kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
About ten years ago (summer of 2002), while I was working in Yellowstone National Park, I took a lot of time that summer for personal reflection. The the rocks beside the Snake River and the roof of the cabin where I lived became close companions of mine. I took a lot of time to examine where my life was at that time, and there were a lot of things that I didn't like.

Towards the end of the summer, based on my reflections, I started writing a short series of notes to myself. I titled these "Personal Initiatives" and set out what I wanted to change and how I was going to go about doing it.

There were probably 50 or so entries. Some of these were fairly arcane and maybe even silly. Among them:
  1. Get rid of my acne by washing my face twice a day.
  2. Wear contacts any time I'm not at home.
  3. Take better care of my teeth.
  4. Get in better shape.
  5. Pursue financial independence and keep a budget.
  6. Get better grades and get at least a 3.0 from that point out.
After I returned to Auburn that fall, I looked over my Personal Initiatives from time to time. And it occurs to me what a good motivation this was for me. As evidenced, my near term goals in many of my initiatives I achieved within the next 3 years. I never earned less than a 3.0 after that fall. I was financially independent in 2004. I'm in better shape now than I was.

Not only that, but my plans gave me goals. Even the arcane ones ("wash your face every day") gave me little things that I could do to feel like I had accomplished something every day. Not every goal had to be in outer space - I could accomplish 5 things just by walking out the door each morning.

Of course, some of them I completely blew too. There were a lot of entries about future planning that involved me becoming a pilot. Some other entries concern wanting to have a family (not there just yet...). But overall, I would say my success rate for my personal initiatives in 2002 to today is probably close to 75%. 

The reason I'm thinking about this is that I kind of feel a bit like did in the summer of 2002. Lost. Listless. Unsure of what I want in my life but unhappy with where I am. And without a plan. Every day I get up and go to the same job and do the same things I've done for the last five years. Then I go home and do the same thing each night. The cycle usually never varies. Now, to be sure, my life is much better than it was in 2002. I'm married, a homeowner, active in my community. But that seem creeping, nagging unhappiness is still there. 

Unfortunately, I don't have the luxury of taking an entire summer off to work and reflect on my life. But I'm seriously thinking that it might be time to write down some more personal initiatives. Having passed 30 now, I can't help but feel that I've entered a new stage of my life and, if I don't want to spend this entire decade listless and unhappy, that I have to begin to plan some things out and set some goals for myself.

Yes. I think it's time for some more Personal Initiatives.


Jan. 23rd, 2012 10:20 am
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
So after our crazy storms last night, the temperature here is now 65 degrees.

It's almost warm enough to wear shorts, and yet I'm wearing long khakis and a button down long sleeve shirt.


Jan. 17th, 2012 04:02 pm
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
Fold back the morning and bring on the night
There's an alien moon
That hangs between darkness and light
Latitude, between me and you
You're a straight line of distance
A cold stretch of black across blue

It always interests me what memories a song will pull up.

This song is pretty much all about high school for me. I listened to the whole Made in England album a lot while touring Europe with the family in 1998. Continued to listened to it for much of the following year, to the point where I could nearly recite each song. Believe, Made in England, Belfast, Latitude, Lies, Blessed.

I'd love to see Elton John in concert.
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
Trying to get my shit together and decide what I really want to accomplish this year. This is all that comes to mind.
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)

Done All domains are off GoDaddy now.

If Bob Parsons whats to kill elephants, shamelessly and misogynistically exploit women, and support laws that will destroy the Internet as we know it, they're going to do so without my money.


Dec. 24th, 2011 12:46 pm
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all the inhabited earth. This was the first census taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. And everyone was on his way to register for the census, each to his own city.

Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, in order to register along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child. While they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

In the same region there were some shepherds staying out in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened.

But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."

And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased."
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
On this day, ten years ago, I created an account on a site called TigreJournals, which was run by a friend of mine. But I needed to test it. So I created a post called "Test" with the content of "The cheese is good today." That post is here.

"The cheese is good today." It was an in-joke that, hell, even people on the site wouldn't get. It goes back to my freshman fall at Auburn, when I was in the Intro to Engineering course. We made heavy use of the WebCT system, and there was a semester long running thread on the WebCT discussion boards about how good cheese was. Being that there were like 100+ people in this class, it got stupid long after awhile. Even the professor got in on the fun. He'd even say things in class like "are we going to actually discuss this, or just talk about cheese."

My blogging experiences actually go back further than that, to Open Diary, where I kept my first few blogs. I wish I could still go access those, but they've long since been purged. Over the years, I've moved. From TigreJournals to LiveJournal and, most recently, to Dreamwidth. But all the data is here. Ten years of crazy life experiences, from a 20 year old college sophomore to a 30 year old married engineer, my blog documents the ride that was my twenties.
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
... at least he's not ronery anymore.


Dec. 5th, 2011 04:26 pm
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)

There. I posted something. :P
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
As a reminder, I have a few Dreamwidth invite codes available on a first-come, first-served basis if anyone would like them. 
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
You know, I've been on the Internet a fucking long time. I've been into the belly of the beast and emerged out it's asshole (also known as 4chan). I've seen so much sick and crazy shit over the years that I literally thought that there was nothing left that could shock me. 

I was wrong. This made me fucking RAGE and nearly cry.

I would advise you not to watch the accompanying video unless you have an exceptionally strong composure. I only lasted about 30 seconds before I couldn't take it. I don't have kids (yet :P) but I couldn't even begin to imagine treating them this way. No child deserves to be treated the way this monster has behaved.

To my friends in Texas, please do what you can to spread this around. Be sure that Judge William Adams meets justice for his actions.
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
I've been having a lot of dental work done recently.

It started way back in August, when I noticed something feeling really weird in the back of my mouth. Like one of my teeth had cracked in half. But there was no pain. So I figured I'd go to the dentist and have it looked at. But I decided not to go to that same dentist I went to last time around. They were expensive, for one, and it seems like they wanted to drill my entire mouth out. So I picked a different dentist.

Glad I did that.

This new dentist seems to take a more cautious approach. Whereas the previous dentist was like DRILL ALL THE THINGS, this dentist is more along the lines of "let's try this less invasive thing first and see if that works."

Unfortunately, it didn't work out right just off the bat. They tried to fill that tooth, but the filling caused pain so I ended up with a root canal back there. Then, while doing the root canal, part of the file broke inside my tooth. Fortunately, it broke at the bottom of the canal, so there are no complications from it.

Went back again today for my checkup and to have them look at something that has been causing pain on my lower right side. After all that was said and done, they took X-rays of my entire jaw, as I mentioned that the previous dentist thought I should have my wisdom teeth out OMFG RIGHT NOW. After looking at the X-rays, she told me she really didn't see any reason why I should have to have them out.

So yeah, glad I got that second opinion. And, short one minor filling, a clean dental bill of heath. Surprising, considering where I was a couple years ago.


Oct. 27th, 2011 02:02 pm
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
Trying not to lose my head
But I've never been this scared before 
Tell you what I'll do instead
Lay my body down on the floor 
To forget what I've done
Silhouette 'til the good Lord come 
All we know is distance 
We're close and then we run 
Kiss away the difference 
I know you hate this one 
Trying not to lose your own
Boxing up everything, you've got 
All you ever knew of home
You're scared scared to see 
Your mother there in the door
You wonder, where did the years go? 
All we know is distance 
We're close and then we run 
Kiss away the difference 
I know you hate this one 
But this is how the story ends 
Or have we just begun 
To kiss away the difference 
I know you hate this one 
The violins make no sound 
And I begin to feel the ground 
All we know is distance 
We're close and then we run 
Kiss away the difference 
I know you hate this one 
But this is where the story ends 
Or have we just begun 
To kiss away the difference? 
I know you hate this one
Listen til he's twenty
Last's til twenty one
Rushing past the window
Like he's watching his own son
And sixty years of sorrow
Brought five to six of bliss
Left my mother's mother
Without so much as a kiss
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
Revolutions are a dirty business in every country they occur in. Libya is no exception.

Moammar Gadhafi was a terrible human being. He was a thorn in the side of 5 US Presidents. He actually did pursue a WMD program, only giving it up in 2006. Under him, Libya was a state sponsor of terrorism and was behind the destruction of Pan Am flight 103. At home, he brutally repressed his population and ruled with an iron fist. In short, he was not a nice person.

According to a report on the BBC that I was listening to on the drive home, he was found hiding in a drain pipe in Sirte. He begged for his life, and was shot in the abdomen and again in the leg. Supposedly he "died" en route to a hospital, but at least one report mentioned an execution-style shot to the head.

Now, is this what happened? There's no way to know, and I suspect we never will for sure. And yet, I find myself having some difficulty taking any "joy" in his death, especially a death such as that. No man who begs for his life should be killed, especially without due process. I would much rather have seen him turned over to ICJ authorities and tried for crimes against humanity.

And yet, it may have been the best possible outcome. Libya is not a stable country at this time and probably lacks the facilities to hold Gadhafi securely. There would be months of negotiations that would have to happen before he even got to a trial. All that time, his continued defiant existence would continue to empower his dwindling base. With him out of the picture, the rebels / new government should have little problem establishing itself as the new legitimate government of Libya, thus drawing a close to this whole thing even faster.

Revolutions are a dirty business. 
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
As of today, my old paid account on LiveJournal is over. I upgraded to Plus so I could still have most of my old userpics, and will continue to cross-post to there for the foreseeable future. But Dreamwidth is my new home.
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
Unlike Steve Jobs, unless you're in the tech industry, there's a pretty fair chance you've never heard of Dennis Ritchie.

However, to those of us who make a living writing software, Dennis Ritchie was well known as the creator of the C language (considered by many to be the "mother tongue" of computer programming languages - the language from which many, many others were derived). He was also one of the key developers of UNIX, which underpins the majority of computers on the planet (directly including OS X, indirectly Linux and many others - here's a "family tree" of everything descended from UNIX).

Considering that PHP, the language I primarily work in, and Objective-C, my current favorite language both derive from C, I'd say I owe Dennis a pretty significant debt. I raise my glass to you, Mr. Ritche. RIP.
kiranlightpaw: (apple)
Normally, I'm not one to be too taken with the death of a "celebrity" ...

... but this one fucking hurts.

We truly lost a titan of our generation. A man who became synonymous with the company he founded, and whose products made life more awesome for millions of people. As I look around my house, pretty much every room has some touch of Apple, and all of that thanks to Steve.

Rest in Peace, Steve Jobs. The world was enriched by your presence and is saddened with your loss. Thank you for everything you did.
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
When I first heard that Disney was going to re-release Lion King in 3D, I was a little concerned. This is one of my favorite movies and was a huge part of my childhood / adolescence, and I wasn't a big fan of the idea of it being butchered. But all the same, how could I turn down the chance to see one of my all-time favorite films in the theater again for the first time since I originally saw it in 1994, especially seeing as how I missed the IMAX release a few years back?

I'm not going to review the content of the movie. If you haven't seen it already, there's something really wrong with you. It was one of the biggest films of the 1990s.

As for the 3D version, well, I can now assure you that none of the magic was lost. This was an extremely well-done version of the film that kept everything intact while tastefully adding depth with the 3D. It was just as good as I remembered it being. Right at the beginning, during the Circle of Life scene, at one point in the film Zazu comes flying into the picture. In the 3D version, he literally seems to go flying right over your head. This earned several "oohs" from the crowd. There were only a few moments where the 3D seemed gimmicky.

In short, I was literally smiling the entire movie. It was so good. And yes, I cried when Mufasa died. If it's wrong to cry then, then I don't want to be right.

The only possibly complaint I could have about the 3D was that, in a few scenes - it was most notable in the fight scenes - the low frame rate became very noticeable. But it only lasted a couple of seconds at a time.

I know a lot of people are probably like, "why bother when you can watch it on DVD?" These are probably the same people who say "eh, I'll catch it on DVD later" for every new film that comes out. There's just something to be said for actually going to the cinema to see a movie. The whole exercise of getting a ticket, sitting in the theater and being around other people just can't be reproduced in the theater.

In this case, the crowd was half the fun! I knew this was going to be a special movie when, after the opening scenes (the Circle of Life) and the big Lion King logo shows, the crowd was already clapping and cheering. Someone in the back yelled "boo!" when Scar's paw slammed down on top of the mouse. The crowd again clapped and cheered after Rafiki convinced Simba to go back, and the film got a standing ovation at the end. I love it when that happens. That totally made the evening for me.

But I also realized what was happening when I looked around the theater. We went to the 9:20 showing at the Monaco, so there were only a few kids in the theater. Most of the people in the theater were 20 and 30-somethings like me as Sarah. People who remember seeing it as kids now getting the opportunity to see it again. For those people, it was (like me) a chance to "be a kid again." And there were some people who probably saw it in the theater as kids were now sharing that same experience with their kids. I know that had to be special.

So yeah. It was very well done. I may try to catch it again one more time before it goes out of theaters again in 2 weeks.


Sep. 15th, 2011 07:49 pm
kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
Back in the US. Actually, sitting in the Atlanta airport waiting for my chariot ugly-ass MD-80 to carry us to Huntsville.

Had a great time in Jamaica. Will write a bigger post later.


kiranlightpaw: kiran_likeshine (Default)
Kiran Lightpaw

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