Really weak effort in links

Ann Althouse on the Netherlands’ (possibly) failed experiment

Aaron Swartz’s upbringing

More Richard Thaler healthcare ideas

Over 8,000 words about the study of human extinction

“The Hanging”


Two weeks’ worth of asides, IX and X

Monday 2/18 – College sports conference realignment

Tuesday 2/19Still watching The Walking Dead

Wednesday 2/20 – “Harlem Shake”

Thursday 2/21 – “Ask yourself that question, everyone that has a job, if you don’t come in tomorrow what will happen?”

Friday 2/22 – Florida weather in February

Saturday 2/23 – Winter outdoor napping

Sunday 2/24 – What to do about city-killing asteroids

Monday – Crash was awful

Tuesday – Room service

Wednesday – Effect of bicycle helmet laws

Thursday – Hideous tourney unis

Friday – Trade-offs

Saturday – We’re moving to sinkhole country

Sunday – What human brains are good at

So we’re moving to Florida…

…Orlando to be precise. I guess this sort of flies in the face of my initial post here. Oh well. I wrote about being happy in Ohio knowing that moving for my job was becoming more and more a distinct possibility. So maybe that was a reverse jinx of sorts.

I’ve been writing now and again in this space since the beginning of the year as a moderately safe creative outlet between my days of making spreadsheets and my nights and weekends of making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. This move should give me something to write about at least.

(But unless there’s a Loveland, Florida, I guess I’ll have to change the name. I’m glad I just used my own name as the domain address.)

The timeline is not certain except that it will be fast. I will be working out of Orlando on a permanent basis on March 18th. Just depending on how the sale of our house here goes, Mindy and the kids will be moving down in April or May most likely. I’ll make a few trips up in that interim period.

I’ve been dreaming of living in a warmer climate for some years now,  and this is my chance. I remember vacation in South Carolina a few Augusts ago when it was 95 degrees every day. My reaction was like, “yeah, this ain’t so bad, I like this”. Regardless, two-and-a-half months of brutally humid summers is more than offset by seven months of 75 and sunny. Just need to start stocking up on the sunscreen now.

But it’s not going to be easy, leaving a place where we’re comfortable. Mindy’s family is here. We went to college here. Our friends are here. My family is less than a five hour drive away. Seeing all of these people less will be a challenge. But at least we’re moving to a place where presumably people would like to visit.

So we’re treating this like an adventure. The kids will be fine. They’re young and haven’t reached prime friend-making age. Mindy will be fine. She adds friendships so quickly and prolifically…I have no idea how she does it. Me, I take forever to develop friendships. I remember growing up, wondering who my dad was friends with. All I could come up with was coworkers and the husbands of my mom’s friends. So that’s what I’m banking on. ( I just hope the Orlando office has a sufficient happy hour culture.)

Babysitting will definitely change. No more for free. So this will have to be a line-item added to the budget. And no more overnight babysitting either (unless we fly Grandma down while Mindy and I take off for the weekend).

But it’s worth it. I am still working for a Cincinnati company, so it’s not like we are severing all ties to our lives here. It’s a relatively low risk adventure, realizing that nothing is truly low risk. It’ll give me a chance to grow in my career. Trying to play it safe in the corporate environment is the real risk.

It’ll give the family a chance to grow too. We’ll all be out of our comfort zones, forced to be open to new experiences. I truly believe we’ll all end up better people for it.

So there it is. Florida. Here we come.

A President’s Day retrospective

President’s Day. This is not a holiday that is typically associated with seminal moments in one’s life. And this President’s day is no different. What it is is a three-day weekend. And for that, I am a fan of President’s Day.

I am kicking off this President’s Day Weekend by sitting in Mindy’s office with my laptop, listening to music and browsing the web while she works on of her perpetual side-jobs or projects. The same as it’s been for the last few weeks and months. And I’m fine with that. We watch a lot less TV because of it, but we still get to hang out and sort of relax.

So that’s what’s going on in our lives at the present. And since I’m not ready to write about what I was hoping to write about this week, I figured I just try to remember what I was doing on previous President’s Day Weekends. I doubt I’ll remember specifics, but I should at least be able to comment in broad strokes as to what was going on in our lives at the time.

A year ago was the first President’s Day in our current house. We were six months away from the arrival of Louie, probably taking the easy life of 1-to-1 parent/child ratios for granted. Little did we know what we were getting ourselves into.

Two years ago would be our last President’s Day in our first house. Newport was fun, but we had outgrown it. Earlier in the month, we put a low-ball offer on a bank-owned property in the ‘burbs. That offer was summarily rejected, but it set us on a course to move to our current house. (Who knows if we would have had Louie had we not moved to a bigger place.) So the three-day weekend was spent doing project after project getting the house ready to put on the market.

Three President’s Days ago, I attempted to give up caffeine. It did not go well. I was training for the Heart Mini Marathon at the time. I felt a little foggy on my five-mile-run that morning, but I made it. But by noon I had a headache that made it physically impossible to stand up. I went to lie down in bed and told Mindy to wake me up in a few hours so I could get ready for our friends’ kid’s birthday party later that afternoon. When she woke me up three hours later, I felt like I needed to crawl out of my skin. I did not attend the party. The next day I woke up with the same headache and desire to crawl out of my skin. I did little of use that day but persisted. I woke up on day three in the same miserable condition, walked downstairs to the kitchen and made myself a pot a coffee.

Who really knows what I was doing, specifically, four President’s Days ago. However, I am fairly certain I was yet to come down from my Super Bowl 43 high.

Five President’s Days ago, we were four months away from being first time parents. So our lives were pretty much focused on preparing for that. Our one-car family experiment that only begun six month prior was coming to an end, as we needed to buy a family truckster to cart the baby around. We’d buy a small SUV by the end of the month.

Eight President’s Days ago was our first as a married couple. Not sure what we did, but I’m sure we were up to our eyes in wedded bliss.

Nine President’s Days ago, I in the midst of streak of six annual Vegas trips with my college buddies. I remember seeing Elton Brand at Caesar’s at blackjack table by himself betting a thousand dollars a hand. Since he and I share the exact same birth date, I was always peripherally aware of his career progress. Needless to say, I still have a long way to go to catch up to him money-wise.

Fifteen President’s Days ago, Mindy and I had been together for a month or so, and I took her to my fraternity formal. Amazingly, she opted to stick with me after that.

Twenty President’s Days ago, it was unseasonably warm in Canfield, Ohio. I was in eighth grade. My friends and I played driveway basketball for three straight says. It was awesome. I want a driveway basketball hoop at my house now.

A week’s worth of links VII

Another week, another list of things I’ve read online that are worth saving for future reference. But really, it’s mid-February and I still haven’t finished one book this year. So I need to put the PC down and pick up the Kindle.

Metallica: a history lesson

I’m a sucker for thoughtful NCAA takedowns

The silliness of American gambling laws

High school reading assignments

“High-quality revenue has three main characteristics: predictability, profitability and diversity.”

Fascinating piece on Tom Wolfe (h/t Conor Friedersdorf)

The Lumina immortalized on Google Maps

The army’s troop leading procedures

“The only alternative is to humanize our work.”

Medical history template

Apparently, there is a rivalry between Sydney and Melbourne (h/t Tyler Cowen)

Hedge funds getting into the landlord business