Beginning of Journal

Mon Jun 06, 2022

I’ll Be the Fudge of That

I got you the Chocolate Fudge. Maybe I’ll save you some of the Cheesecake Fudge if you’d like. Text me kiddo. I miss you lots and lots!

Sun Jun 05, 2022

I’m Here For You Kiddo

Adi, now more than ever you need to know that I am here for you.

There is so much to say, but much of it is going to have to wait.

My deepest hope is to see you soon and to be there in the wings always to help you in your journey through life.

Your Dad

Sat May 07, 2022

Sunday Night to Monday Night

Gonna launch your own website for you, together with you when you’re here “this weekend”. It’ll be a Sunday night pick-up and a Monday night drop-off. We can also optionally have a river adventure!

Fri May 06, 2022

How About Dungeons & Dragons Picnics On The River?

Hi there Kiddo. Thinking about you every day. I just got some long plastic pipes to use as a sort of rail to load the canoe onto the car more easily. This will let me lift the canoe onto the top of the car more easily and encourage me to take you boating on the river more often this summer, just the two of us.

And unlike previous times when I said no to going downriver because of no way to get back to the car, this time we’ll have the electric bike with us and we can go downriver just fine. I may let you ride on the bike with me back up to the car. We will take 2 helmets just in case.

I got a few steaks for this weekend again. I got the steaks before you showed me that wonderful YouTube video about cooking in the drier. I subscribed to Food Theory. Ugh!

I can’t wait to see you. I think I pick you up Sunday night and bring you back Monday night. I think I may call into work sick for a you & me day if you like. If you just want down-time, that’s okay too! We will have plenty of canoe weekends this summer. Even after June I can keep the canoe in the storage place here and we can come out and do trips. D&D picnics on the river!

Thu May 05, 2022

Welcome To The Diamond Age

I there Kiddo. I missed the 11:00’s yesterday. But here I am. I am ALWAYS thinking about you. I’m glad you went on that Scouts camping trip last weekend. I don’t want you to miss out on anything… opportunities over there or time with me. So I’m moving back to Staten Island. Another weekend was cut-out this coming one, right when you were asking for additional days to make up for last one. That hurts. I know it must hurt you too, but I want you enjoying all the activities your mother is scheduling in for you through the weekends.

So I’m moving back. Whether something is good or bad is all in the state of mind. This is good. Being out here in the Poconos has served it’s purpose. Trampolines. Ziplines. Go-carts. Canoeing. Snowboarding. Fresh mountain air and the general cure for the times… none of it as important as being right there for you when you need me. We can always jump in the car and go on our adventures. This is your 11 to ~13 year-olds. After that you may not even be interested in doing this stuff with your ‘of dad anymore. I’m all-in while you’re at the age of Dorothy, Alice, Harry and Nell so long as you want King Coyote on the sidelines.

If you want to hear one of the best stories ever written, I recommend Diamond Age. It’s in our Audible. It will take more than one listen. It’ll be a bit hard to understand. And there’s some naughty language and considerable adult situations later on in the story. But chances are you’ll get bored and move on before you get to it. But if you do listen, you’ll be hearing one of the greatest stories every written, and I believe the Alice/Dorothy of our time, although plenty of people think Harry Potter is that. I don’t. I think it’s Diamond Age. But only read it if you want to learn about subversion.

The Diamond Age

Wed May 04, 2022

Adi as Hashira Demon Slayer by Adi Levin

Adi as Hashira Demon Slayer.jpg

Wed May 04, 2022

Murray The Fury by Adi Levin

Murray The Fury

Wed May 04, 2022

Adi Cat by Adi Levin


Wed May 04, 2022

This Bodes Well by Adi Levin

This Bodes Well

Wed May 04, 2022

Anime Cat Girl by Adi Levin

Anime Cat Girl

Wed May 04, 2022

Rainbow Dash Combined With Elmo and Nezuko by Adi Levin

Rainbow Dash Combined With Elmo and Nezuko.jpg

Wed May 04, 2022

Keyword Adi’s Art-work For Some SEO Goodness

Okay, that last post went well, right down to the slugification of a challenging piece of Python code as the headline (on This bodes well. However, it’s 9:00 AM and it’ll be 11:00 AM before you know it, and I promised my kid that I’d have their artwork up at eleven.

Resonate the music of their life at eleven. Everybody loves to hear their name at eleven. It’s the gift that keeps on giving at eleven. Instill a kind of deep and abiding internal resiliency at eleven. Keep your word at eleven. Get started now, before it’s eleven. 1, 2, 3… 1?

First I need to finish updating my release system so that it picks up any changes in the images folder. Okay, done. Next I need to actually keyword the different images Adi sent me, merely by changing their filenames to something that reflects what they told me yesterday…

Okay, cd into that folder and do an ls -l:


Okay, now run the macro to format it like this:


Okay, done. Now move it over to (including THIS post). Done again. But looking at the output, I see I need to hardwire a line-return after every picture and change the order… okay, better.

It’s almost 11. I would have liked to have made a page per art. Do so for just a few. Small window… go!

Tue May 03, 2022

Here’s Some of Adi’s Art

Wow, I just shared this website with Adi. It’s a lot earlier than I planned. I figured I’d let them discover it when I was not on this Earth anymore. Hey, I guess it’s a lot better this way because they’re interested and I got their go-ahead to publish their artwork!

Adi as Hashira Demon Slayer.jpg Murray The Fury Adicat This Bodes Well Anime Cat Girl Demon Girl Face Demon Girl Dual Color Har Womans Face Rainbow Dash Combined With Elmo and Nezuko.jpg Nezuko Kamado Sketch Dorothy Hairless Sphynx Cat Dark Lord

Tue May 03, 2022

Got An Electric Bike So We Can Canoe More

Hi Adi. I bought an electric bike that we can throw in the canoe when we go down the river. This will let us take the canoe down the river. We can start with just one short trip.

Our time in the Poconos is probably winding down. I will make sure that these last 2 months are packed with as much good stuff as I can. And even after I come back to Staten Island to be closer to you, we will find ways to use our mountain and river skills.

Tue May 03, 2022

I’ll See You At Eleven (But Not Tonight… Yawn!)

Hi Adi. I love you more than anything. One of the small things I can do for you is to create a website where I’m really just talking to you, even though it’s published to the world. Your dad can’t do many things well, but one thing I can do is publish a website and write a lot. I guess that’s 2 things.

I do not really expect you to read it. But if you ever want to know what your dad is thinking about you, just check here.

My original idea is to talk to you in video at eleven… 11:00 AM and 11:00 PM. That way you’ll always know when to come to this site to see my live YouTube broadcast begin. I won’t be doing that tonight because I stayed up so late for the last 2 nights, until like 2:00 AM (just like you!). So I’ll be going to sleep soon after doing the dishes and taking out the trash.

Life is full of a lot of dishes and trash. No matter how horrible it feels to do dishes and throw out trash, it’s something you’ve got to just man-up and do. Otherwise you’ll be drowning in trash all your life, and that starts to effect the mind.

Mon May 02, 2022

Adi, Meet My First Girlfriend, The Amiga

Once upon a time Adi, your daddy didn’t like computers. I fancied myself an “art person”. I had an Uncle Mort who said I should like something because it had lots of screens and stuff. He’s a suburban sprawl developer who turned himself into some sort of Rolls Royce-driving Palm Springs Florida royalty who didn’t want to communicate with friends and family. I took offense to his labeling me, but years later I did fall in love with computers, screens and stuff. It wasn’t video games. It was for art-work. It was the merging of art and computers. Here’s a video that sort of captures it.

They called it a WIMP interface, Windows, Icons Mouse and Pointer (or pull-down menu). I guess I was sort of a wimp. I fell in love with the Amiga computer in particular, and this was one of the mixed-blessings of my life. I actually went to work for Commodore Computers in Westchester, Pennsylvania where the US office was headquartered. I was the ultimate fanboy, leading the local Philadelphia Amiga Users’ Group that met out of Drexel University where I went to college and helped secure the room for our meetings.

Then the Amiga died and everything I learned was lost effort. Or so I thought. It turned out that everything other than the WIMPy parts of this computer were based on something called UNIX. Unix is all that magical incantation stuff that the presenter said you didn’t have to deal with anymore. Ironically, I drifted away from art and towards the geeky computer stuff. And so it’s not really the graphics or the screens or the animation that did me good. It was the text. It was the vim text editor. It was piping data. It was the command-line interface.

I am typing this to you now because of that. I don’t do much hero-worship, but when I do, it’s Jay Miner.

Jay Miner is a subversive. He is The Alchemist, a real-life John Percival Hackworth. Please read Diamond Age someday. It is the ultimate Alice / Dorthy story.

I gave my 2nd-to-last Amiga, an Amiga 2000 decked-out with a 68030-card, Video Toaster and Mandela virtual reality system to a friend, Steve Elsner. I wonder if he still has it. He made a profound impact on me when I tried pulling him into my projects in his youth, and he said he had another project and showed me a picture of his new baby. And now I’m writing this to you.

Adi, regardless of my love for the Amiga, computers and tech, I think you should continue with your art. It’s way more fundamental. Please continue pursing your art-work with and without computers. You are a wonderful artist and I am so proud of you!

The geeky stuff will come later if you care to learn it.

This site is the new refrigerator door!


Wed Apr 20, 2022

Planning A Dungeons & Dragons Campaign For The Kid

Having a wonderful evening with Nat. Doing the setup for a D&D adventure to Procrasti-Nation having to do with the “middle” town between Goblet and Fizz being into cooking unusual meat. Adi immediately went to cannibalism but I pointed out the world of possibility in D&D.

I told them how Procrasti-Nation was created… oh wait! This goes onto of course! Okay, copy/pasted this story there. Wow, this is a fabulous web-publishing approach. Anyway, we’re sitting in the living room of the little cottage house we rented for 2-years.

Okay, so plan this adventure. We already established that it is a highly accomplished wizard and a silver dragon… ooh, just Googled it. SOOOO glad I chose a silver dragon. They like to take the form of humans and live in the company of humans and elves. I made an interesting halfling connection too.

A thieving guild troupe of halflings that call themselves the Pickertysnickets mounted a campaign against Procrasti-Nation and was the only party to have members return from a campaign. The halflings were oddly close-mouthed…

Oh wait! Ahhh! The middle-town between Fizz and Goblet IS Prorasti-Nation with the silver dragon actually living in the town as a human with a vast underground nation right under the town. The dragon and the seasoned wizard with whom the dragon is friends decided rather than to keep running, they’d settle down right where they were and take charge of all the campaigns leaving to find Procrasti-Nation with misdirection, sending them on wild goose-chases and sometimes to their inevitable doom, depending on whether the wizard and/or dragon (whichever the adventurers meet first) likes the party or not.

Let’s make some identities! Okay…

Okay, that’s good. Now for a few halfling characters and a novel bartender.

Okay, and the barkeep:

Thu Apr 21 00:01:55 EDT 2022

Wow, just had a wonderful D&D session with Adi setting up the Procrasti-Nation adventure just like planned. They met all the above characters plus a few.

Thu Sep 2, 2021

Explaining vim to a 10 Year Old

Well it’s been since August 26 since my last time here! I was only 50 years old at the time. I’m now 51. Hmmm, what to write to my kid? Well, your dad as you know is incredibly boring… to the average folk who tune in. Fact is I type in this crazy text editor called vim, and that’s only just the tip of the iceberg showing how your dad crazy-adapts to the times… going for an actual sort of timelessness. Everyone else in this world right now is throwing themselves into VSCode, which is a different “text editor”. Really, it’s a Microsoft integrated developer environment (IDE) based on Google’s Chrome browser code, through their “Electron” development platform, which really lets you use all the components that went into building the Chrome browser to build custom apps. It looks like this…

And so THAT is also a text editor, coming through a “browser” if you will. This is cool and lets Microsoft do such things as Cloud-based text editing and embedding VSCode (essentially) into Web pages, like they’re doing through Github Codespaces. Okay, so why talk about this sort of super-boring stuff to a 10 year old, going on 11? Well because you’re coming on the classic Harry Potter / Dorothy Gale / Alice in Wonderland sort of age where… well, all sorts of stuff. Many call it coming of age, but you become meta. A “normal” human who is much like an animal following the natural course of life becomes a meta human able to override the natural course and surprise the fates.

Well, your old man THINKS in vim. When it comes time to forcing the narrative of life, there’s talking out loud and there’s writing. For talking out loud, you don’t really need any special tools except for the spoken language you’ve learned and internalized. It’s an internal tool, baked into you similarly to how many tools that mammals aren’t born with get sort of indoctrinated into you from ages 0 (just born infant) through the age of meta when you can reject the brainwashing being poured into you and replace it with your own. All preparation of higher-form animals, i.e. social ones especially mammals, for life is a form of brainwashing. We are all born incapable of taking care of ourselves, feeding ourselves or even lifting our heads up. We are totally dependent. Those first 10 years are fixing those issues.

In the Jewish tradition, you are an adult at 13 years old. This reflects this sort of thinking. When you’re old enough to lead prayer is when you’re an adult. It seems so young and in modern society, there’s still a lot that needs to be wired-up in your head. Namely, a way to make a living and have worthwhile product to offer the world, so you have a place in it. There’s unlimited ways to go about it, but if you’re going to be talking out loud to yourself anyway for “narrating your life” to help with the meta process of being a higher-order human (than just working on animal-like instincts), then you might as well do the same with writing.

And no text editor will truly be with you your entire life… except for the vim typing-style. Your dad has internalized an actual typing way… a way of typing… a way of interacting with text that is much broader and more generic than development coding… into is life and psyche and muscle memory and being. It’s an internal tool. Vim is part of me the way the English language is a part of me. Those green flashes are me reformatting my text, given these “hard returns” at the end of each line which you can’t really see…

Even after 10+ years, I’m still learning vim. There’s always Google for figuring out some of the more obscure things. Or built-in help… I don’t use the built-in help very much. It uses vim tags, which is a whole area I never really explored. So as adept as I may be at vim, I will never really stop learning it. And this is as opposed to having to re-learn a text editor or IDE whenever styles or fads or fashion changes. VSCode appears like it’s setting in as the heir apparent… but to what? To a bunch of stuff that has briefly appeared and disappeared and had fragmented following and inconsistent history and has generally let down its users over the years. There’s tons of examples, but vim (in its earlier form) has been around since the 1970s as vi, written by Bill Joy for the ordinal Unix OS (what Linux is based on). So it goes way back and is even part of some of the standards that define what Unix/Linux are

Oh, there are generalities you can use. So I used :set list to turn on the showing of hard returns. Generally you can reverse these things by putting the word “no” in front of the command. And there you have it!

Okay, that’s enough of explaining for now why your dad’s stuff looks archaic and boring, while at the same time is fundamental and applicable to almost all tech in almost every situation. It amounts to having that same free-flowing style that comes so easily when talking out loud to yourself for also writing, journaling, and indeed even coding.

I can write pretty much any language in here and run the code by just “piping” whatever’s in the current file to the correct interpreter/executer. So if what I were looking at here were JavaScript, I could… I would have to refresh my memory a bit. But the way of working here is very flexible to thinking out loud, coding, or many of the other things you may find yourself needing to do with text over the years.

Okay, good session. Maybe a bit “out there” for a 10 year-old, but that won’t last long. I want to show you how ol’ Dad works so you can pick and choose the bits for yourself that you may wish to incorporate.

This is a secret weapon. Want to see it get published?

Okay, that will be on the web in a moment. But let me get the streaming YouTube embed ready in the meanwhile… I don’t know the video ID yet, but when I stop live streaming, YouTube will give it to me. Later gator!

Thu Aug 26, 2021

I’m 51 Years Old Tomorrow

Hello World! Well, I missed 11 AM as I had hoped to be here by, but hey, let’s talk about showing up anyway. Being late isn’t always enough of an excuse for not showing up at all. Some things, especially self-imposed disciplinary things, are very much showing up for even if you’re 15 minutes late for them. Don’t get so hung up on precise titles and labels. As I covered in earlier videos, language lies. In every language lies lies. Lies lie in every language, and there they lay… in wait. In wait for hyper-literalists and lawyers to twist and change and rearrange their meaning until you don’t know up from down.

Lock-down taught us a whole bunch of things. I’m sorry it had to be your generation coming of age in the Alice/Dorothy sense (there are other senses) during this strange period. However, don’t just feel bad for yourself and your generation. The world is full of magic that only nerds knew in my time, and even then I was about 18 years old before technology became cool enough. Then everything I learned about tech/magic and loved so much went away. For me, it was like the Internet and the Web going away the day the Amiga died, singing…

No, won’t go there. But it took me maybe 25 years to replace the Amiga in my heart. This is because I lacked the deep insight about what it was that I was really in love with with the Amiga computer. It was a particular instance of a development platform and player device / runtime engine or what have you. It was a platform like all the various Nintendo devices are platforms. Everything you learn and know and do is keyed to that platform with absolutely no caring about you or your life post-platform. Everything expires. All hardware goes away. No platform is forever. And I went through a long dry spell of the lacking of love-worthy things (Windows 3.1, 95, MacOS, OS X and MacOS again).

You my child are growing up in a world full of magic that can keep the mind occupied WITHOUT long-form reading. I read when I was your age, only these tiny 1/2-inch thick books like Danny Dunn but they were so ahead of their time thought-wise (firefly drones in the 1970s) that they fed something in my soul. My heart sang and such. At around 12 years old I moved onto the thick adult books, and the easily found magic was limited to JRR Tolkien’s Hobbit, Lord of The Rings and such. Anything else was off the beaten track and risky because the books were so thick and took such an investment.

Your generation can get its fix of soul-feeding media 1000 different ways I could only dream of as a child. This includes video conferencing with multiple people. Even that term conferencing is dated because it sounds so high fallutin for something that’s just built into GMail now. It’s commonplace. Online meetings. That stuff is amazing! I mean I can hardly explain to you how mind bogglingly incredible today’s world is, and how seeing it be the new normal for your generation is humbling….

And a little scary. It brings to mind Arthur C. Clarke’s great quote and perhaps warning that, and I paraphrase, any sufficiently advanced technology is going to be indistinguishable from magic… for those who don’t understand it. And how could one person, a mere individual and mortal, ever hope to understand a laptop or iPhone or even other non-digital devices like cars and airplanes?

The answer is education… pewie! What a terrible label for such an important thing. We are all machines learning. We are all the very same artificial intelligences we are trying to create. Doing stuff… having experiences… being in the game… just showing up… I could go on. There’s a Mark Twain quote

The Secret of Getting Ahead is Getting Started

And it’s so true! The first baby-step in any endeavor is the most important. In fact, it’s fair to say that every step in any endeavor is your first baby-step, for actual beginnings and endings are quite blurred in life, and you’re only ever really living in the “now” moment.

I once said to you there is only the now moment, and tried to go on to explain Einstein’s Theory of Relativity, I believe the special case that talks about our Universe, such as it is. But this bored you silly and you cut me off and locked in on the words “there is only the now moment” without the context I tried to give you.

The lesson there is being hyper-literal and talking over someone who’s trying to tell you critical parts of life’s game will leave you with the wrong lesson. Nuance is important. And what I tried to tell you is that in addition to the now moment, we can also mathematically prove a slight moment before the now moment and a slight moment after. So it’s the now moment and enough of a sample of what appears to be time to know that at least momentarily in the past and future are indeed real.

So while the now moment is extra special, we have evidence that some sort of past and future exists in a very real sense. So learn from the past and pay attention to the future.

Just don’t limit yourself excessively in the now moment, because it’s let’s say 80% of what’s important, with 10% being studying/re-living/learning from the past, and another 10% planning for or being prepared for or visualizing what you want the future to be.

That’s about right. The ratios may be off a little, but generally you look for 80% of the benefit of any given undertaking from the first 20% of time you think you may be willing to give to it. That’s how you plan for the future. The future is so uncertain, excessive planning is silly and could leave you with a worse feeling (in life in general) than if you didn’t plan so much, but instead focused on improving yourself in ways that will serve you no matter what the future may hold.

Okay, that’s it. I don’t want to over-do these At Eleven vids. I don’t even know if my child will ever read/discover/whatever these vids.

I’m not going to talk much about them. I’ll just keep pushing them up, using them to think out loud regarding bringing up a child in this day and age, and with them in particular in those ways I am actually able to share.

So, that’s about it. The secret of getting ahead is getting started.

Overcome the initial inertial resistance in all things… staying in bed all day. Use visions of the future that appeal to you to entice you into those small first steps, and try to make each such small step all you’re ever doing so that one day you will have had a mighty journey without ever feeling like you put so much work into it.

And plan a bit. That’ll be another video. How to paint the future with broad strokes, regardless of the money in your pocket and most other circumstances of life… because magic. Don’t be hyper-literal. Of course there’s no such thing as magic. But there’s making sure it continues to be that way in practice in your life. You will be a slave to technology if you don’t learn how to be its master. Sorry if all that kind of language is not PC these days, but The Matrix and stuff. The concept of people becoming enslaved can be discussed without it having to be an insult every time to those populations that have been.

SciFi helps you think in extremes so that in your life you can bracket problems broadly… part of those broad strokes of painting the future.

Okay, now I’m just getting too abstract and rambling. I tend to do that. So video over. Later gater!

Tue Aug 24, 2021

Life is a Game of Connect The Dots

Hello World! Hello Adi!

Well, what do you know! I actually thought about the topic of today’s live broadcast before I started. I think I want to let you hear me type…

Okay so now you can hear me type… and talk. But these are silent performances. Pushing things through the actual vocal cords changes things. I want my ideas to flow exactly like when I narrate to myself in my head, and it has a distinctly different vibe than when I talk out loud, even to you my YouTube audience. But as I’ve often said, I do this more for ME than for you… except maybe now I do it for Adi… At Eleven.

And so… and so… yes, life is a game of connect the dots.

Sometimes the dots are connected to reveal a picture you can paint in, thereby having achieved the higher levels of the Maslow self-actualization pyramid, mostly again for your own good… to live life well and to die with fewest open regrets. But perchance, leave something behind for future generations too in the form of the “completed” painting.

Nothing’s ever really completed. We go back and tweak constantly. Some achievements are best left as is, freeing up those tweaking resources to forge ahead onto new things. Do not sacrifice the future on the altar of the past. Did Star Wars really need to be redone?

Anyhoo, examples are too numerous in life to enumerate here. The important thing is to know such a game is going on and adapt your strategy accordingly.

That would probably about do it for this @11 video, huh? Let’s see… connect the dots, what else?

No perfect vision of a future. Remain adaptable. Have a pretty good vision of the future. Know what things you love.

But how will I know?

You don’t really even always know right away. Sometimes it sinks in over time that something you’re doing, some minor part of your life that plays 2nd fiddle to the “main event” as you tell yourself (and often other people tell you) may rise to become the main big thing.

Don’t worry about those cat fight sounds. It’s not as bad as it sounds. It’s Lynnie and Eri and Eri and Lynnie, two little kitties I know… 2 little kitties I know.

There once was a Billy and Sammy. They have a story. Tell it.

I have lots of stories.

You wouldn’t know it Adi, but your dad has led an interesting life.

My dad hardly knew his dad… Jack. Jack died when my dad was only 12 years old. My dad died when I was only 21 years old. My plan is to extend those time-ranges, even though I started out late too, having you when I was 40.

That makes the math easy in calculating ages, being born on a “zero” year. You’re welcome.

Anyhoo, most of the things I know are old-school. I just listed to the Funniest Jokes series on YouTube from George Burns, Cheech and Chong and Jimmy Stuart.

Few things are what they ever look like at first, on the surface, don’t judge a book by its cover, and all that.

In life’s game of connect the dots, the image takes place slowly over a long period of time, perhaps your whole life.

There will be false starts, false stops and false images being revealed.

A certain sensitivity that the “green arrow” types of life despise will be your guidance in knowing whether you’re on the right track.

The goal here is to:

And in that order too. Maybe the first 2 are the same. But the 3rd is very different. Megalomaniacs like every tycoon society covets focus too strongly on that last point, in fact trying to do it all in their lifetimes rather than left behind legacies. Folks like Bill Gates are the worst because they’re 2-faced copycats, just standing on the shoulders of giants where he knocked off some other poor chump. Folks like Bezos are a bit better, actually building something new although as a Philadelphian, I remember CD-Now very well and seem to recall that was first. Elon Musk come next, being of a much higher quality than Gates or Bezos, doing things genuinely first, highly disruptive to fortified and often corrupt industries, and having a wonderful vision of dying on Mars, but not on impact… even a great sense of humor. Autism will do that.

Remember the scale. Everything’s at least on a 2-dimensional scale, like autism and gender. That scale is often called an axis. On one side you have one thing and on the other you have the opposite. Think in those extremes in life, but try to always act in moderation. That will allow you to:

And finally, things get complex. That 2-dimensional (1, really) becomes more complex when you introduce another axis. These are called quadrant graphs or plots or analysis… labels… poo!

Too much to talk about those. But when you connect the dots of life know it’s complex. It’s not a sequential process of increasing clarity, but rather a few steps forward, a few steps back, chasing rabbits down holes, coming back up and figuring out whether there’s anything you found/learned that you should incorporate into your developing… Uh, art style.

And I guess that’s where I’ll stop. A bit over 20 minutes… not bad.

Love you lots and lots, Adi of yesterday, today and tomorrow.

What matters most is what’s in your mind… but not only. It’s all on a scale. The now moment is worth slightly more than past and future moments, but not so much so that you should forget or play-down either.

Think! Observe! Actualize. Repeat.

Later Gator.

Loved going go-karting with you yesterday :-)

Mon Aug 23, 2021

VidCon Cancelled, Making the Best, Internal Voice

VidCon in October is cancelled. Boo! But for the safety of their audience I guess it’s the right thing. Gonna keep the trip to Disneyland and Anaheim anyway. It’s time Adi saw the Pacific Ocean, and maybe we’ll visit my old friend Marc Rifkin. I think he’s near that part of California.

Hmm, okay what next here? I love that jumping around in THIS journal doesn’t risk any proprietary information leak. THAT is one of the valid reasons for not using one-and-only-one place for important things. You always know where to look when you do, which is the benefit. But if you’re there in a different context, like publishing publicly, then it’s a liability.

And so… next? I’ll keep this short because I have a lot of work to do this week, and doing these “At Eleven” broadcasts is a lot like lunch break. It stimulates the mind… always writing, it’s the process of narrating your own life. The old example I’d use is The Wonder Years or Scrubs, but people of this generation wouldn’t get it so I have to find the pop culture equivalent now. Adi talked with Nat and me about that yesterday, your inner voice, where it comes from, whether you can turn it on and off and control it, and its function. As a compulsive journaler and advocate of the observation game, my heart sung for joy that they initiated that topic. It’s the early stages of super-smartness.

The “upper brain” (prefrontal neo cortex and all that) processes information differently than the rest of your lower or more base animal brain. Forcing your thoughts through it, and therefore the voice centers (BTW, drawing does a similar thing) forces you to actually… uh… shall we say database index your experiences. It’s not that the experience was actually different, but it WAS different for you once you journal it or vocally or visually describe it, because you more greatly recreated the experience in your head than other people who were near you (or whatever).

This database processing makes you “smarter”. Again, it’s hard to really call it smart. It’s just that you have greater capability and resources in making use of that experience. For example, learning from it to make better decisions later in life because you can look back at it better. It’s like reading a book and learning from it, except that the book is your own life.

THAT is the observation game. I’ve been talking to Adi about it since they was old enough to distinguish words. I read the Walrus and The Carpenter to her even prenatal. This is deep in my psyche. There are so many things you can learn about life and so many ways to improve the way you live your own life (by your own standards, by the way) if only you stop and analyze through your own brain what you just saw.

The list goes on and obviously part of the observation game is internally asking questions about what you saw.

And THOSE QUESTIONS are sort of part of your master-list for life. Even though I’m in THIS MikeAtEleven “journal”, I’ll show you how important that is to me based on how I start my personal private everyday journal over in:

<-- This direction`

And there you have it. It would be way too long of an AtEleven entry to delve into WHY those are my 3 questions, but in a nutshell:

  1. What’s Most Broken is a weakest link in the chain analysis
  2. Where’s the Biggest Bang for the Buck is an 80/20-rule & Rabbit Hole analysis.
  3. What Plates Need to be Spun is a… well, to answer one metaphor with another, a “don’t drop the ball” analysis.

So much of life is just maintenance and paranoid pedantic checking that nothing is going wrong. We live life on the razor’s edge, and that razor is always vibrating. So the less love-worthy parts of life is tending to that fact. That’s why it’s 3rd (lest love-worthy) but why it’s one of the big 3.

Anyhoo, that’s enough for today. Thanks for joining me. Don’t forget to subscribe. And if you’re reading this when I’m dead, Adi, I’m never really dead so long as the memory of me is alive inside of you. I’m a little virtual simulation running in your prefrontal cortex, actually in either case.

It IS the simulation of course, because simulation is just a label for something running on a processing… uh… substrate? Whiter it’s reality or a simulation is just a matter of label choice.

Love ya lots and lots!

#VidConUS 2021 cancelled


Sun Aug 22, 2021

Hello to Future At Eleven

Hello World! It’s Mike At Eleven!

The purpose of today’s video is to get down a bit of the purpose of this site. It’s not just to force a self-lesson in commitment and consistency (which it is), but it’s even more importantly to talk to future-Adi, my child.

Adi is homeschooled and going through a lot of similar experiences now as the rest of her generation. Her homeschool experience is suddenly no longer so unusual, and that’s awesome. They’re being raised in-part by her YouTube heroes and we’ve been to the YouTube convention in Anaheim, CA a few years back before lockdown. They’re now 10 and we’ll be coning again this year, but this time there will be 2 adults and more time at Disney Land. Anyhoo, I digress. Let’s talk to future Adi.

Hi there Kiddo! I already lost you I bet. Every time I try to teach you something you transition. I’ve got so much to show and teach and help you with in life, it’s one of the most difficult things that I can’t do it in “normal” talking format. However I get it. The other side is where you homeschool and you’re here in the mountains of PA to relax and chill.

At least when you’re doing your YouTubing, it can be while you’re actually tubing down the Delaware River like we did last week, or perhaps on the trampoline big enough for four in your front yard next to the zipline where you can zoom down a cable like Batman or Kim Possible, or maybe a nice bonfire in our front yard in our firepit and so on.

There’s a treehouse (really a hunter’s chair in the tree) and archery and lots of other little things to show you that real reality is sometimes just or more interesting than the online stuff. And I see you get it. Lead by example, not by words. That’s been my new mantra and when quarantine set in, you saw me spring into action to make sure you weren’t having the same shut-in experience as so many from your generation.

Advice? I’ve got a lot. Who knows if it will even be relevant to your life by the time you read this, however we all stand on the shoulders of giants. And it’s totally okay to borrow from others to get a point across fast. I do have a very old webpage that I replublished recently as I migrated my decade(s)?-old WordPress website over to plain markdown files like the one you see me typing here. You can find it at…

And there it is! I have a lot of organizing to do. But before I launch into THAT learning (3 orders for things: sequential, organized and instant), I will show you this YouTube video that pretty much nails it:

Oops, wrong journal. I have to watch it. I generally like one and only one place for things to cut down on “search” liability when you set out to do things. It’s good to have one master location where all your important stuff goes so you always know where to look.

Anyhoo, let’s embed that bad boy… or girl… or it.

Yay, I’m getting better at my vim copy/pasting. More on THAT later. It’s great to always be getting better at some tools for life which are always going to be around in greatly unchanged form so you’re not losing your skills by no fault of your own. It’s like learning how to draw on real physical media so no one can take that skill away from you as software interfaces and apps and platforms change on you over the years. It will happen. Decades of mastery can be wiped out in moments as companies and developers decide to change everything on you to force you to “modernize”, but really just to re-buy a lot of stuff for the sake of their profits and earnings.

You own your skills. Don’t let anyone take them away from you. They are more valuable than money in the bank.

Okay, what else? Not much. I’m not going to make these things too long. I’m going to go finish watching that video myself, but I’m at 15 points of advice out of 20 of the things you generally don’t know about life until it’s too late, and they’re so nailing it.

So let’s start out there. Hope that video’s still around by the time you’re reading this (if ever).

Hello Future Adi, my child. I love you so much! I know I referred to you as my “child” up there, and that may trigger you as not gender neutral enough for this day and age, so from here on even on this site, I’ll be referring to you as my child. Okay, My Child? Later Gater!

Fri Aug 20, 2021

Practicing good Mike At Eleven publishing habits

Hello World! It’s Mike At Eleven! I just launched that website yesterday with the intent of doing some live streaming (or at least content releases) on my channels (usually YouTube but others soon) at 11:00 AM and PM. And here I am 11 AM the next day… woot! We’ll see if it sticks.

I’ll often do silent journal streaming like this, for I’m sure an audience of almost no one. But I always have things on my mind and am fine with thinking out loud to myself, and in this case some potential audience because YouTube lets me, so hey, why not? It could be the thing that sticks.

Whether or not it sticks, it certainly can be the catalyst for other things. The first rule of making stuff happen is to capture your ideas and begin the process of actualizing. An idea is more real merely by virtue of writing it down. In the information age such as we’re in, it actually is real in the sense that it’s published and shared content that’s consumed by other people, plaid back in their heads, and that makes it real in at least the sense that stories are real. It’s no longer locked away.

Okay enough of that. Let’s get down to some actual actualization. 1, 2, 3… 1? Well, it’s really the work day and I’m just taking a short break for this. And so I think through what goes next naturally on this site. I work dramatically differently from most people, and that makes a lot of difference in how useful I am professionally and even how I think in my personal life.

For example, vim. Can you imagine just thinking out loud to yourself like this in VSCode? Where would you begin? Where I begin is in a github repo. It’s actually a git repo that happens to be stored in a private repository on Github. Many folks treat git and Github like the same thing. They’re not. Github is a community site built up around the git program written by Linus Torvalds to help with Linux kernel development. Github is a site that sprung up around the git program because even though git is already a DISTRIBUTED revision control system, one of the places that’s nice to distribute your code is to a “centralized” location that you can always push to and pull from for backup, undo and switching machine locations. Forget about developer collaboration for a moment.

Let me demonstrate…

There! Now all my latest journal changes are in Github. Now I don’t actually publish my daily journal even though I back it up to Github. It’s in a private repo and I only publish excerpts. One place I publish them is to:

HERE! Or soon to be here. How do I do this? I add another vim buffer. Observe:

It’s in my 2nd vim buffer now which I can cycle to with:



That was my entry from yesterday. But I want today’s entry over there too. And so today’s “At Eleven” video will be about making a 2nd entry. Soon I will type these things over in that journal (in defiance of my own 1-textfile-for-life principle) for the sake of the site.

And I will show you how my vim blogging macro works. But first…

That’s “before”. In a moment you will see this entry go live over there…

Not yet. I will take the bottom of yesterday’s entry from my main journal while we wait and make the below entry technically complete…

Okay, so today’s entry is pushed (so far) and yesterday’s complete entry will be out in a moment. To avoid that in the future, I will always start my Mike At Eleven ramblings in this journal/repo. Remember, it’s a folder on my drive…

And to make vim work a little more like blogging software, I have a macro that does this:

The macro uses that “Bxginning of Journal” text to do the insert at the top of this “stream”. Changed the spelling here so as to not interfere with the macro. And so tomorrow I do this…

Or later tonight at 11. You get the idea. Well anyway, that was Mike At Eleven. Thanks for joining me and don’t forget to subscribe.

Thu Aug 19, 2021

Launching on

Hello World! This is a silent live stream. I’m planning on getting a new website registered and hosted with publishing in the next few minutes. It’s all the “new way” for me. Recently I retired my WordPress site at and exported all the content as markdown which pushes out. It’s not pretty yet, but it’s also no longer on WordPress and besides my Github membership, I have no hosting costs anymore.

This is a live performance. Excuse any mistakes. But here we go looking up a site we would like to register. My aspiration is to do some sort of video every night or morning AT ELEVEN. So it will be Mike At Eleven. And because I’m old-school, I’ll use .com. I still think it’s the best TLD baring any overriding reasons to do otherwise (like

I may end up starting from this point…

I re-started this live-stream. Getting a hang of how this works. Just installed OBS and my stream key from YouTube for the first time on this new laptop. Registered a new domain: Mike At Eleven… Now it’s time to activate it on 1, 2, 3… 1? Set up the DNS…

Github includes “free” web hosting. You can resolve a domain to a repository branch. Most people host it at but or use a I actually plan to resolve to the “apex” domain, aka the registered domain without a www or other subdomain. We do that with a series of A Records with the “@” symbol as host… Okay we’ve got our 4 DNS entries. But it’s resolving to Github now with it having no idea where to send the traffic. So let’s do a before/after…

I should have done a before/after BEFORE that. You can now see that it’s resolving to Github. Otherwise it would have been an even more generic error about no DNS or no site found. Let’s make a repo…

I use my Windows Home / github folder so much I default my terminal program to cd into it. Now I make a new folder there with the same name as the site…

So I simply made a mikeateleven folder, created an index.html file in there and added it to the repo and committed it. Oh yeah, I also initialized the folder AS a git repo with git init. So far no actual Github… just git the local program. Let’s push the repo to Github…

We name our branch as main… We set the address of our remote repo location… And finally we do our first push that needs a little more info than usual…

After that, you can just use “git push”.

Anyway now we tell it’s a page. Github recently promoted the feature onto their submenu…

This is the first time I used a plain index.html. It shouldn’t be a problem. If it is, I’ll switch to an (markdown) which will make the jekyll system kick in.

Okay, a few things. I added the domain through this area which by the way is:

Repo / Settings / Pages

That www warning is not important because we’re not using www. We’re resolving the site to the apex domain (no www).

And there we go! We went from just registered domain (moments before this video) to a Hello World index.html in a few minutes. Recap…

  1. We add the 4 DNS entries at our registrar that provides DNS services. NameCheap in this case (recently switched everything off of GoDaddy)
  2. We create a local repo and then push it up to Github.
  3. We go into that Repo’s Settings at Github and select Pages and set a few things including the registered domain we’re using.
  4. After a few minutes you can activate “Enforce HTTPS” which makes the site more secure and better for SEO (eliminates “2nd version” of the site).

Okay, it’s still a very plain text file which you can see from view-source…

That’s nothing different than I typed into my text editor vim. But we want to make it real HTML and also pretty. So we can select a theme.

That won’t work on a .html file. It has to be markdown. So we’ll git rename index.html to…

That was weird. Anyway what happened was this…

I accidentally made my git repo at Windows Home / github instead of /reponame. And so I copied the files I knew belonged in there back in, including the .git (invisible) directory that gets created when you git init. I also did a git pull because once you choose a theme and set a domain Github automatically puts a few files in your repo… so I had to do a git pull before I could commit and push my local changes.

I should have pushed while I was explaining all that because it takes a few minutes for the Jekyll system to recognize your new .md files and stylize them. It could be done by now…

See how it all has a look now? Even though the file looks like plain markdown locally, when you push it there’s a system that converts it to richer html. Okay, let’s do our first real entry there. Let’s make it this whole entry. I might change it later, but my plan is to do something like this (live YouTube broadcast for example) every day at eleven either AM or PM.

It’ll take a minute or two for that to push. In the meanwhile I’m going to copy some files from another repo/site that uses the same theme which takes out the banner with an override.

That’ll take a few minutes to see again, and I tore out the Google Analytics and favicon.ico link. I’ll put them in again soon (another evening) when I add tracking on that site. But let’s see…

And so that’s it. I’ll try embedding each YouTube video on these pages too if possible and let this site evolve. Thanks for joining me and don’t forget to subscribe! It’ll take a minute or two for that to push. In the meanwhile I’m going to copy some files from another repo/site that uses the same theme which takes out the banner with an override.

That’ll take a few minutes to see again, and I tore out the Google Analytics and favicon.ico link. I’ll put them in again soon (another evening) when I add tracking on that site. But let’s see…

And so that’s it. I’ll try embedding each YouTube video on these pages too if possible and let this site evolve. Thanks for joining me and don’t forget to subscribe!

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