This time last year was a wonderful lesson that I'll be forever thankful for. Hard to believe it's only been a year since I began to realize I was a cygnet - and now I watch in awe as my flight feathers come in. I must look a mess, half-moulted. I must sound a mess, beginning to give answers I used to scoff at. "You'll just know." It is a happy time.

Thus ends the cryptic section of this post. (It's not intentionally obscured - I know what it means - I just... can't write it any better, not in words, so I'm just going to sit here and be wordlessly happy right now.)

Flux is the constant in my life, and the stability I have is that I'm perpetually in transition. I'm learning that I need to schedule time at home base just as much as I need to schedule time for trips - instead of just putting down things like "Toronto, January A-B," I also need to put down "Boston, January X-Y" to make sure I've got time in town if I want to spend time in town. Make sure I schedule time to hang out with friends and family if I want to spend time with friends and family. Leaving things open in a "oh, at some point of course it'll happen" fashion leads to them not happening. Scheduling time as "open time" is... paradoxical, but extremely useful - they're times during which I can't pre-schedule anything. Right along the lines of my habit of planned improvisation.

It's fascinating to hear other people describe me as naturally being things I know I'm definitely not - when you practice coping strategies enough that they can appear effortless to other people, maybe that's natural; I don't know. I'm not naturally patient or diplomatic; I have a hair-trigger temper and the ability to unleash a powerful rage when my passion takes me the wrong way - and because I recognized that short fuse when I was young, I also learned to be acutely aware of it and control it very, very well, so I could be patient and diplomatic despite myself. (Well... the "patience" part is somewhat less successful, as anyone who's ever seen me being antsy - and most people who've met me have - can attest. But I say "patience" because even if I am antsy, I can still wait. I just fidget considerably in the meantime.)

Similarly, I'm not naturally social, and very much not extroverted; I've written about this before, and I've written about why I write so much in this context - in effect, it takes this much ongoing scripting for me to constantly get past my considerable shyness. I am also not naturally...

  • persistent - mostly I use this adjective as an alternative to describing myself as "impatient" ;-)
  • detail-oriented - when it matters, I set up elaborate error-checking routines (not always perfect, but at least I hit different bugs each time; that probably means I'm fixing at least some of them successfully) to make sure my WOOO IMPROV tendencies don't miss things I should not ignore.
  • generous - the reason I focus so much on making it easy for myself to give is that I know that I am lazy and that if it is hard I will not give; my willpower is not that strong. (And so I compensate by hacking around it! Yay hacking!)
  • brave.

...but nevertheless, I can be these things sometimes, despite myself (or possibly because of it, or both at the same time). A lot of hard work is involved. Even more grace is involved. As fuzzy and reluctant to engage with the specifics of the God Thing as I am, I know I do believe in that.

On a completely unrelated note, cream of roasted carrot soup (vegan, just pureed 'till smooth) and cream of roasted sweet potato soup (vegan, same) look virtually identical and taste amazing when combined, a blend of complex flavor notes unified by this lovely roasty sweetness. I need more adjectives for describing flavors; I keep on falling back to "tasty."

A whole bunch of good conversations today; here's one (Fedora Marketing). I've spent the last 2 days immersed in Fedoraland; the next 4 days will have a lot of non-computer time, so I'm storing water in the camel's hump, so to speak. Blues dancing for the first time in aeons tomorrow night (yay Liz!) and (hopefully) the start of music recording on Friday, and hiking this weekend if the weather permits (I have a CAR! I can go to NEW HAMPSHIRE! And see nature, and people!)

I have a Maltron on loan from Karl and am doing a cold-turkey switch for outside "normal working hours," so this non-computer-time thing is part of the plan to mitigate the jarringness. And then I'll be up to 3 keyboard layouts I can switch between, whoo! I surprised Yaakov at FUDCon by being able to touchtype dvorak on his laptop (slowly, I've only done it once since high school) when we were working on the survey.

Yep. I think I'm mostly over the "recover from being in Glenview" hump; normal Melness is returning. If there's such a thing as normal Melness.