Overflow

When a man is full, what can he do?

Burst.

—Zorba, the Greek

Or in my case, overflow.

I started cry­ing in class. Thankfully, no one noticed. People can get awk­ward around a crier. Unfortunately, sup­press­ing a good cry is as unsat­is­fy­ing as sti­fling a sneeze.

A lot of peo­ple hav­ing been say­ing the wrong things to me lately. On top of that, the abun­dance of inter­ac­tion I have with peo­ple — a side-effect of my projects — is leav­ing me drained and overstimulated.

Sometimes I won­der if it’s in my nature to be emo­tional. That try­ing to change this is like try­ing to teach a bird not to sing.

I don’t even have time to deal with this. I have to put it all aside, because there are more impor­tant things to think about right now.

At the bus stop, I real­ized that I have a ten­dency to brood. I don’t lis­ten to happy songs to get me out of the mood. It’s all minor keys and lemon peels, so I can help it run its course.

It’s been a rough week.

Sometimes, a part of myself spills out.

10.0

Version 10 has been retired here.

Design break­down and inter­view about this ver­sion at Perishable Press, on the Minimalist Web Design Showcase.

Introducing the tenth ver­sion of equivocality.com.

Surgical Style

When approach­ing 10.0, I knew I wanted a note­book feel, so I used a grid back­ground to give the hint of paper. The idea was min­i­mal­ism. Single col­umn, no more icons, and super stripped-down meta data.

It’s still based on the good old 480 pixel-wide col­umn, although it’s bro­ken down into a grid with two main columns, which is used for the footer and other vary­ing pages. The dates on the left side are bul­lets that break out of the grid to help visu­ally sep­a­rate entries, and for a bit of style. Otherwise, it can be a lit­tle boring.

Continue read­ing “10.0″…

Lost Girl

Lost girl in a coffee house - head down.

I saw her there again. She was sit­ting in a cor­ner of the cof­fee shop, head on the table. Last time she was still car­ry­ing her gro­cery bags. This time, there were no bags, no Dora The Explorer hat. Only a thin, hooded win­ter coat, and salt creep­ing up to the shins of her sweat pants.

Lost girl in a coffee house - head up.

Occasionally, she would prop her head up, as if to reori­ent her­self to her sur­round­ings, and her mat­ted hair would fall about her face. She never seemed to notice. She was gone again.

But was she lost to the world, or was the world lost to her?

A Pat On The Back

It was one of those days at work. Things weren’t exactly going wrong per se, but it was stress­ful enough as it was. People were all over me, want­ing this or that, under­min­ing my deci­sions, inter­rupt­ing my con­ver­sa­tions, run­ning around like their heads were cut off.

I kept remind­ing myself to breathe deeply (from the feet, as the Taoist sages are often described as doing) and calmly, kept think­ing about the word tat­tooed on my wrist, and it worked for a while.

By 3:15, I had to get out of the build­ing. It was sup­posed to be a three-song walk, but it ended up being nine. I didn’t even bring my coat; I was burn­ing so much inside, that I didn’t need it. The win­ter slushed creeped up my jeans by six inches, but thank­fully no one noticed.

Tyler was leav­ing as I was step­ping back into the office. He invited me to an art show at Bablyon tomor­row1. I told him that I’d think about it, know­ing in my head that I wouldn’t go.

I had to stay late to work on the server. Fifteen min­utes later, Tyler walked into my office (he must have walked part way, then turned around) and asked if I was alright. Admittedly, I’ve never been able to hide my moods very well, but I thought I was doing a decent job of it2. He told me he could feel that my energy was low, so he asked if I wanted a hug. I politely declined, not because I didn’t appre­ci­ate the ges­ture, but because I didn’t think it would have helped. He gave me a firm pat on the back any­way and stepped out of my office.

And it helped more than I ever would have expected.

  1. Which is strange, because the last thing I went to see at Babylon was a Dwarves con­cert []
  2. Something of an old habit of mine. Not being able to hide my moods is often a bless­ing in dis­guise for me, because it com­mu­ni­cates to peo­ple that some­thing is wrong. Otherwise, they’d never know, and it would never be fixed. []

Moleskine Cahiers

I’ve offi­cially retired my old note­book, the one I’ve been using since 1999. Starting in my first year of uni­ver­sity, it went every­where with me. Long trips, short trips, camp­ing, in the bath, you name it. I even included it on my list of what I was bring­ing to Hong Kong. It’s filled with so much ran­dom­ness: doo­dles, code, thoughts, quotes, lyrics, bad poetry (my own, of course), lists, ideas. One day, I’ll scan them in and doc­u­ment them.

But alas, it’s full.

Moleskine cahier

As a replace­ment, I bought a set of three Moleskine Cahiers. They’re thin­ner and lighter, which is exactly what I’m look­ing for; it took me over eight years to fill my last one, and I didn’t need some­thing that would last that long.

I do have sev­eral pocket size Moleskine note­books scat­tered around the house and in var­i­ous bags for use in sit­u­a­tions such as rid­ing the bus, but those are rather dif­fi­cult to write in unless sit­ting at a desk due to their small size.

These cahiers are a lit­tle dif­fer­ent. From the insert:

THE MOLESKINE CAHIERS are jour­nals with heavy-duty card­board cover, in black and buff with vis­i­ble stitch­ing on the spine. The last 16 sheets are detach­able and there is a wide pocket for loose notes.

The pages have a delight­fully smooth feel to them, and absorb ink with­out bleed­ing. I’ll be keep­ing one in my back­pack, one in my shoul­der bag, and one in my cam­era bag. I need them now more than ever.

There’s so much to write and so lit­tle time.