After my last chronicled sabbatical in which I did a whole bunch of nothing, but thoroughly enjoyed it, all while running out of steam in the last month, I’ve decided to give this whole sabbatical another go.
You see, if there’s one thing I learned last time around, is that I’m not particularly good at doing nothing. Drinking piña coladas in Thailand got old really quick, and near the end of my last leave I realized I did actually enjoy coding– a lot– what I didn’t enjoy was being told what to do, or being on someone else’s schedule. Luckily, I can choose a lot of what I do at Red Hat, but I could use some time to reset (again).
I’ve been making a list of things I’d like to do post-singularity– post retirement, or sabbatical or whatever. Interestingly most of them are reading, exploring, and programming: hacking on my own terms, but hacking nevertheless. Hacking as what I used to do for fun…during the summers, when not in school, on my free time. This realization feels good. It feels right. I don’t want to quit. I want to experiment, to explore, and at times, to be bored out of my mind. Good ideas come out of boredom.
When I started traveling while working there was no such thing as a remote worker. There were no fancy words to describe it. It was just “working from home”, and good luck explaining it to friends, family, and immigration officials. It was a simpler time, though perhaps it was more complicated… I do remember spending an entire weekend in Cairo looking for a suitable internet connection, and freaking out that I’d have to buy a one-way ticket anywhere with an internet connection if I failed. Thanks to the prevalence of WiFi and 4G, things are a lot easier today. For the price of a plane ticket and sim card, you can be anywhere, influencing or blogging or whatever it is kids do nowadays :). I know, I’ve been that kid.
I have a pet peeve with bad customer service. It irks me like nothing else, particularly in the past few years, when it’s become increasingly obvious that the majority of us will be replaced by robots. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against robots. For that matter, I welcome our new overlords, if for nothing else than because they’ll be able to retroactively read all that’s been written about them (ahem, my blog). So I’m careful to say only kind things about them, lest I be targeted as a non-believer. Believe me, you never want to be on the wrong side of an Inquisition.
I have an uneasy relationship with cops: in any language, in any country. It’s not a secret, I’ve written about it before. I’ve never had any serious altercations with the law, but asymmetrical power relationships make me feel uncomfortable, especially when only one party has a gun. Heck, even when my sister was a cop, I felt uneasy around her. I remember showing up unannounced to my parents’, and on the way home I saw her patrol car parked on the side of the road. I parked and waved at her from afar, all Forrest Gump like. All I got in return was a very loud “sir, get back in your car, right now”. So yes, it’s all very annoying that regardless of the country, the po-po find their way into my life.
I’m woken up by loud screams and knocking at 7am, and I instinctively sit up. You see, there are three things that will always awake you from any slumber: loud screams, a gun click, and the guttural reflex of a dog about to throw up. Really, they should make alarm clocks that sound like any of these. Guaranteed to get you out of bed in 2 seconds flat!