Crickets and Cobwebs

This little blog has been terribly quiet lately, some parts of it more than others. The writing guide section has been the most neglected, not having seen a new entry in two and a half years. A few of the entries have been fairly active with comments—some related to the entries, some not—but I haven’t had any time to respond to the comments or answer questions or do anything else with it. So I shut it down. The entries are still available, but I’m not going to write any more and I’m no longer allowing comments from others.

I’m still debating whether to shut down the word of the day officially or to keep it going with a random new word from time to time as guilt overtakes me.

The site as a whole feels like an old jalopy to me now. Most of it is running on an old, outdated version of a blog publishing platform that hasn’t kept up with the times. I’ll probably update the software within the next month or two, rather than switch to a snazzier new engine, because I’m afraid I’d lose most of what’s already here. Regardless, things will break, even if I stick with the same software and just do a version upgrade. Things always break. Once I have the infrastructure in place, I’ll start thinking about a new design. I’d like to say that I’ll start posting entries more regularly, too, but I don’t want to set unreasonable goals for myself.

In Other News

Learning jQuery 1.3 book cover

Lately, when I’m not contemplating the sorry state of this blog, I’m usually immersed in web development work of one form or another, much to the chagrin of my non-technical Facebook Friends who have suffered the onslaught of my esoteric Twitter posts, which are then automatically posted to my Facebook status, where they are invariably mocked, but all in good fun, I’m sure. My buddy Jonathan and I just had the second edition of our book published. The publisher gave it a new title, just to confuse people. It’s now called Learning jQuery 1.3. Overall, I’m very pleased with the way it turned out, and I’m quite relieved by the first few reviews of it on, which seem just as complimentary as those of the first book. In May I’ll be conducting a three-day training workshop on jQuery, which should be fun and stressful.

So much for getting a good night’s sleep tonight. If I had a brain, I would have stopped this nonsense hours ago. But I knew if I didn’t finish this and post it tonight, it would probably sit in draft mode for another couple months (like the seven or eight other entries I’ve started but haven’t finished). Good night.

Posted in technology | 2 Comments

Monday through Thursday

When I put myself on a diet two years ago this month, I had no idea I’d still be on it today. In fact, the only thing I cared about was making it to the weekend. It’s all I’ve cared about ever since. The place where I was working had bowls full of chocolates everywhere I turned. Each time I passed by them, I felt obliged to stuff my face with at least one. No willpower…

Posted in self-indulgence | 2 Comments


Ben told me yesterday that his new year’s resolution was “to hope that the economics improve.” It was a sweet statement, but I couldn’t help notice that it involved no work on his part–unless you count as work worrying about something over which you have no control.
My resolution is less noble, and it also requires no work …

Posted in miscellany | 7 Comments

Early Christmas

When I got home from work this evening, a package was waiting for me on my desk. I sat down, tore off one end of the padded envelope, and pulled out a book written in Korean. Of course I can’t read a word of Korean, but I was absolutely thrilled to receive it…

Posted in self-indulgence | 9 Comments

Election Day in New York City

In mid-October I received an email from a friend of mine, asking if I could fill in for him at the Future of Web Design conference in New York City. He was scheduled to lead a workshop on November 3 and give a presentation the next day, Election Day.
Of course, I jumped at the chance. And, of course, I panicked soon thereafter. The workshop (3 1/2 hours) and presentation (30 minutes) required a lot of preparation in a short amount of time. But somehow I managed …
…Here are a few pictures I took during my brief visit.

Posted in friends and neighbors, photography | 2 Comments

America’s Greenest City

Can you guess what America’s “greenest city” is, according to an article in the October 2008 issue of Fast Company magazine? Hint: it’s not San Francisco or Portland or Seattle.

Posted in society | 2 Comments

The Candidate Who Shall Not Be Named

If it weren’t for my father-in-law, I’d have no idea that Ralph Nader is running for President of the United States. That’s right, folks: Nader is running again, he’s on the ballot in 45 states, and my father-in-law is a supporter. After reviewing the Vote Nader web site, reading about his views on a number of issues, and watching a handful of videos of him speaking, I have to admit that Nader almost has my vote. He at least has me thinking more about some of the issues that I care about, such as…

Posted in family | 15 Comments

Sara Is Dining with Squirrels

Last year I bought a little gift for my wife, Sara: a domain name and free web development services. Two days ago she used it for the first time, writing about the kids going off to school in her brand-new blog, Dining with Squirrels. It was worth the wait…

Posted in family | 2 Comments

Reluctantly, I Accept the Nomination

Forget McCain and Obama. A new presidential candidate has burst onto the scene. Watch the video to find out who this mystery candidate is…

Posted in society | 3 Comments

Running in America

Peter Hessler has a fascinating article about American distance runners in The New Yorker this month. Running to Beijing” focuses on Ryan Hall, a marathoner from California, but the part I enjoyed the most was this description of American marathons…

Posted in society | 3 Comments