May 21

The cats are in this one

I did an interview today, and then I edited the video. And then I played with the mysterious settings in Adobe Premiere. Everything worked fine, after a subsequent amount of time. It’ll be up tomorrow.

You learn a lot by being self-taught. That’s what I’ve learned, every time. I spend a lot of time thinking about that when I’m messing around with something I’ve taught myself.

Somewhere in all of that is the joy of learning. That’s probably one of those things that means different things to different people, but to me, it’s pretty straightforward. Instilling the willingness to continue to learn in someone, because they understand the delight of discovery, is to give them the drive to want to do it throughout their lives. And what a gift that is, a gift that defeats the fear, the intimidation of learning new things later. Then a person isn’t stagnant. They continue to grow throughout their lives. What a joy that is.

You know people who just sparkle in knowing a new thing. They positively glow at the opportunity. And you know people who blanch at the prospect.

It’s funny, I used to think of this in the context of the elderly. You see it in people a lot earlier, though. And lately I find myself wondering — not about the old guy who knows he’s lived and seen and learned it all, and yet there’s still so much! — but about that middle-aged guy who thinks he’s lived and seen and learned enough.

And he’s going to stagger through the next several decades like that?

That sounds lonely, and depressing, doesn’t it?

So the joy of learning, of discovery, of inquisition, of invention and creation, it shall always be.

These aren’t the problems of philosophy, but, then, it’s only Tuesday.

If it’s Tuesday, that means yesterday was Monday. And I didn’t do the cat feature. So let’s get to that here.

Phoebe did not like this email.

She did not like it at all.

We were sitting out back and Poseidon desperately wanted to be involved.

Really he wanted to find some place to roll around out there, but we’re on to his game.

And now they’re both onto the idea that there’s a chipmunk living in the back yard. If you’ll just follow their eyes here, you’ll see him too.

One day, they are thinking in their little kitty brains, I will catch you and your days of blissfully tormenting us will be over.

Apr 21

The week of the last shows

This is that weird time of year. Sad and happy. Sad to see some young friends go; happy to have a regular schedule over the summer. Sad to know I won’t see them in the fall; happy to see them take their next great steps. Time marches us on.

This is the the second group of people who I’ve had for four years. Last year’s senior cohort was a bit small, and, of course, truncated by global events. This senior class, though, there’s a bunch of people that have spent all four years of their college experience working on this. What a commitment that is, to spend four years of your college life working in one place! And this is the week when we kick them all out of the nest. Time plays this cruel trick and, clearly, I should stop doing this.

There’s a lot deal of talent right there, and those three are off to great, exciting things. They’ll continue to make us proud. Tomorrow we start talking about how we follow them next year. We continue on, as time demands.

Tomorrow there are more projects aplenty. Time is relentless.

Apr 21

Come on, honestly

I’d like to compare and contrast yesterday and today.

I’d also like to point out the date. We’re in the latter third of April. We’re accumulating snow. Who wants this? Who chooses this?

We were in the television studio tonight watching it fall. It didn’t drift down peacefully. It didn’t flutter in the air prompting a meditative mood. It looked like the snow was being flung to the ground. Someone up there was angry with the stuff, flinging it off a shoe, dusting it off a jacket with a vengeance. I’m pretty sure no one here is pleased with it either. But, I guess, you just concede to psychological response akin to brainwashing.

This was a car parked out back of the building. It belongs to one of the evening maintenance people, and I walked out just before 8 p.m. I also have an approximate sense of when those nice people show up, so I knew it was gathering pretty quickly.

Indeed, on the drive to the house it was collecting quickly enough on the roof of my car that it was sloshing out when I cautiously accelerated through intersections. It was that melting-turning-immediately-to-ice stuff. The stuff that’s gross any time of year, but incredibly laughable for … yep, it’s still April 20th.

It’s still snowing, late into the evening. Can’t wait to see what it looks like in the morning.

Apr 21

Not sure why there’s not more to this

And how was your Tuesday morning?

Mine was a bit like a Monday. By the afternoon it wore off, but the time in between a quick run and the p.m. hours it was a Monday. This was dropped. That was forgotten. This got broken and so on.

Days like that it is imperative to always, always, know where your keys are at all times.

The day’s many emails went without incident. And I started the first halting steps of a new Twitter thing I’m trying for work. (It involves work and, eventually, Twitter. There, we are caught up.)

And then there was the studio, where fun things always happen. (One of our cameras is malfunctioning, but the students persevered and actually finished slightly ahead of schedule, to their credit. Also they brought in a comedienne. I hope there are clips of her work, otherwise it’s just a conversation. We’ll see tomorrow.)

So I’m down to showing off my pocketsquare, but isn’t that what Instagram is for? (It is a good one. Go on over and check it out. We’ll wait for your return.)

Classic blue shirt, a basic Brooks Brothers shirt I like, but it’s getting a little old, sadly. And those little seasonal flowers in a little spring-time purple. That’s fun. Makes up for the jacket. I’m weary of this jacket.

Fun fact: Google has never crawled a page where the preceding sentence was written. Weird, right?

My peanut butter and jelly sandwich lunch wasn’t much to write home about — weird how that same thing can vary so widely from day-to-day — but the grilled chicken this evening was tasty. Oh, and I managed to not spray water all over the kitchen when I did the dishes afterward!

I could get about 600 words out of that. Already I’m sitting at 300.

Best leave it where we are then, right? Right.

Apr 21

Almost everything but

I have two blisters on my hand and one less tree in the yard. These two things are related.

The tree was an Eastern black walnut, and some really thoughtful person planted it right next to the house. Well, this tree grew, as trees do, and it was crowded to the edge of the house and the porch and, after we spent the evening wrenching it from the earth, perhaps growing directly into the foundation.

Also some of the hedges got trimmed. Not all of them, because of that tree. It took longer than it should have, that tree. And now a flowering shrubbery of some sort will eventually go in its place.

You know the joke we’ve all shared this year about hand sanitizer finding all the new cuts on your hands? I remembered that when I made it to the office this morning.

That shovel was mean to me, is what I’m saying.

I sat in my little office and worked and then I went to the television studio. Speaking of the studio, here are two recent shows students produced that I haven’t shared with you. First, the evening show, from the growing-familiar-to-us-now bar set.

The drinks are stage props, and most definitely not for people in that establishment.

And here’s the morning show produced a new episode in the other studio, because that’s what morning shows do.

Tonight I watched crews do anchor practice in the same space. A lot of freshmen and sophomores came in for a few reads and, most importantly, feedback. The news directors, graduating seniors, ran the thing and they gave all the younger students great notes. That was a lot of fun to see. It wasn’t the changing of the guard, but it was a rehearsal. We’re getting ready to send more great young graduates into the world, and they are getting the underclassmen ready to start running the joint. It’s a great moment, if almost bittersweet.

I could tell you everything else about the day, but I know you really want to hear about the kitchen sink. And you’re going to hear all about that. You’re going to hear all about it tomorrow, because I got a reprieve tonight. So be sure you come back for that.