This vibe check should be short. June was another month of hard work and even harder discussions. The month ended with my family and I leaving town for a much-needed vacation on a roadtrip through Colorado and Arizona. First we headed to Snowmass, Colorado for a family reunion, then southwest to Dolores, Colorado to my in-laws cabin, and then on to Phoenix, Arizona.

Oh, and I almost forgot. Somewhere in there my wife and I celebrated 13 years of matrimony.

Colorado was great on a variety of different levels; I got to introduce my family to my Uncle Tom’s beautiful mountaintop ranch which he’s put up for sale, I got to see aunts and uncles and cousins and nieces and nephews I haven’t seen in literal years or decades, I got to see my step-brother who is in the Army before his next redeployment, I got to see in-laws and my kids got to see cousins that we haven’t seen since COVID, I got to go white water rafting, I got to see the splendor of the Rockies and the San Juan National Forest, and I got to go on hikes with my family in the mountains.

On one of our hikes my wife and I found a towering 8ft (2m) tall plant. A stupendous plant, with small orchid-like flowers all up and down a central column. We must have seen a dozen of these on our hike. We later learned its name, elkweed, which lives for 20 to 80 years and flowers once in their lifetime before dying. I don’t know how common this plant is, but it felt lucky to us to see such a unique plant at such a special point in its lifespan.

July is about hunkering down, work will be as busy as I left it. I already see 320 unread emails. Kids have day camps and before we know it we’ll be getting ready for school. My goal to spend 100 hours at the neighborhood pool continues. Looking at my SWOT board of life events1, I see the August threat is coming up. Historically, my wife reminds me, August is the month I have a minor mid-life crisis that comes with feelings of burnout and a bout of depression. Knowing that’s on the horizon helps. Not sure why this happens but I’ll blame the Texas heat.

  • 📖 Reading: Finished 5 books this month, which is kind of a lot.
    • Bad Blood: A book about the tragedy of Theranos.
    • The Book of Five Rings: A graphic novel adaptation of Musashi Miyamoto’s 17th century book on martial arts.
    • Incredible Doom: A graphic novel with a visceral coming of age story set at the dawn of the Internet.
    • Deep Work: The seminole book on achieving personal productivity.
    • Bullshit Jobs: A book on the difference between jobs, shit jobs, and bullshit jobs with a hint of Marxism mixed in.
  • 📝 Blogging: 3 posts, 5 drafts. Felt myself hitting a streak but real work got in the way.
  • 💪 Fitness: I’m enjoying Pickleball and played it every week I could. I plan on keeping it up when I get back in town. I got a paddle and court shoes for Father’s Day.
  • 🎙️ Podcasts: Recorded 5 or so episodes of ShopTalk and 2 episodes of Aside Quest. The most notable being the long-awaited Syntax + ShopTalk crossover Event! A great show and I can’t wait to do it again.
  • ⌨️ Open Source: Nada.
  • ⚖️ Budgeting: Fell off the budgeting train, will need to get back on.
  1. I don’t have a SWOT board for my life, but now that I’ve typed this cursed joke into the ether it sort of sounds like a good idea.