Where am I?
Scott Martens wrote a fine post last night laying bare the inputs and parameters of his life; and inspired me to do likewise. I've had a vague, gnawing feeling of dissatisfaction [all my life and particularly] these past few months and I think I'd like to make a stab at figuring out where it's coming from.
Three questions are principally interesting to me here, viz.: "Where am I?"; "How did I get Here?"; "What do I Think About It?" I know the answers to all of these im ganzen und großen, particularly the first two but the third also; however I have not yet formulated these answers word by word. I think that doing so will give me insight that is not available while the answers are bouncing around my head. I believe the most natural order to answer them in is the order in which I've asked them here, and will do so in this post and two more. Note however, the questions all deal with similar subject matter so there will likely be some overlap between what I am saying in these three entries; I am not going to interfere unduly with the natural order of my thoughts to satisfy strictures of the rubric I have asserted. Happy reading! And drop me a line to let me know what you think about it. So,
I live in South Orange, New Jersey (USA, North America, Earth, Solar System, Galaxy, Universe, Mind of God), in a lovely old Victorian house, with my wife Ellen and daughter Sylvia. I am thirty-three; Ellen is older than me and Sylvia is younger. Our dog Lola is an 8-year-old Shih-tzu who has been with us through four residences. Sylvia, 2 1/2, has been with us for only two. (This house is however the third place she has lived; the first year of her life was spent at the Shanghai Children's Welfare Institute.)
I commute to Manhattan, where I work for Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC), writing code to support a statistical arbitrage trading strategy. My "daily grind" consists of: Catch NJTransit train at 6:35. The station is just across the street from my house, about 2 minutes from walking out the door to being on the platform. Sometimes I will take the 6:50 train instead. Ride to Hoboken. Catch the PATH train at 7:05 or, mutatis mutandis, 7:20, and ride to 33rd Street. My office is at 43rd and Lexington; if the weather is nice I will walk, otherwise take my third and fourth trains of the day, the "F" and the #7. I like to buy a cup of coffee from Oren's Daily Roast in Grand Central Station (brewed coffee that is — I have never been very partial to pressed). Depending on a number of variables I arrive at the office sometime between 7:40 and 8:10. Work lasts until around 4:45 — sometimes later but rarely later than 5. Occasionally I leave at 4:30. Reverse the commute and I am generally back home at 6:00, where I have dinner, spend some time with Sylvia, and put her to bed.
So that is how I spend the great majority of my waking time. Things I like to do with the remainder are, work on my house and yard, build furniture, and play rural blues guitar. The work on house and yard is in some sense an outgrowth of my interest in woodworking — I mean to say, woodworking has gotten me interested in using tools and fixing things, which extends nicely to the duties of home ownership ("duties" read expansively, I guess). I am since January the secretary of the Central Jersey Woodworkers' Association, the first club in which I have participated actively since college. (I realize as I write that that I was active in the Long Island Woodworkers' Club when we lived in Queens; but not to anything like the same degree. And before that, nothing since back to college.)
I have some friends in town; through Sylvia, I know the parents of many of her coevals, and get along with just about all of them. Just tonight, I had a nice conversation with her friend Natalie's father Norman, whom I had not met before. And through my neighbor Jim, I know several disreputable types, old hippies, from the area. Some of us (Jim, Bob, Janis, Doug and I) get together on Saturdays to play non-purist blues, the genre my former guitar teacher described as "folk and dead". — All of us play guitar except for Doug, who plays bass; Janis often plays banjo or bass; Jim occasionally plays violin or bass and I occasionally play concertina or violin.
And what else? I like food, pretty enthusiastic about it, tending especially towards barbecue these days, and good beer... That pretty much describes it. I would like to say something about my workout regimen; but alas, anything I said in that regard would be a lie.
I figured if we were going to FB friends, I had better do my research ;-)) Wonderful to meet you properly. I am somewhat in awe of your many pursuits and your ability to keep in touch with cyberspace in and among them. I shall visit more often. xo
O hai PB! Some of the info in this entry is out of date, some not.
I love you because i wnet you all to be good
I love you because i wnet you all to be good