I'm a big believer that it is the small positive things we do in our day that have the biggest impact on our own well being. From here through the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, I've decided to just blog about the small things I'm doing to escape from the anxiety producing headlines in our news. Today, after my day of teleworking, I'm finishing up what I started over the weekend. I'm listening to the second half my Star Wars LP, Sides 3 and 4.
Surprisingly, I recently sought out and purchased a vinyl record turntable. This is a surprise to me because I've spent the last three decades moving from the opposite direction as my music collection evolved from vinyl and cassette tape to compact discs and then finally to digital music stored as MP3 files on my computer and mobile devices. In this century, I don't even know if you can call it collecting music because I now subscribe monthly to an endless library of artists and songs through various music streaming services.
I'm a mid-aged man living in the future where vinyl records are in our past; so I thought. Yet, here I am. I'm looking at turntables and relearning all over again the importance of a preamps and amplifiers when connecting the turntable to a set of speakers. What happened?
My wife and son are struggling with my sudden obsession of turntables and vinyl records. I'm slightly confused of their surprise but I understand.
They didn't know that optimistic teenager that spent hours listening to LPs and additional time recording them on cassette tape for my Sony Walkman. They didn't know that me in college while living in a KU dorm where every room on 6th Floor in Ellsworth Hall set the volume on their stereo to Level 11.
The Ramones, Beatles, Grateful Dead, Journey, Kansas, Rush, Johnny Cash, Guns n Roses, Stevie Ray Vaughn, and Pink Floyd. They knew me back then.
Logan, my 16 year-old son, has pursued his passion to become a pilot this last year. To help pay for that he's been working part-time at local restaurants since he was 14. Today he woke up at 3:30 AM so he could be in Omaha competing with his high school's Show Choir.
I bring this up not because I'm a proud Dad (although I am) but because many of my son's friends are just like him. Hard working and committed to reaching their full potential. This next generation of kids is promising and we're going to be better off with them.
I have served as a federal employee of the United States for close to three decades. I've been a public servant under five different Presidents during this same time period. This year, there has been a lot of talk lately about the oath all federal employees take and where their loyalties must lie. Personally, I don't understand why there is even a debate of what a federal employee signs up for when making this solemn promise. From my point of view, the meaning behind the oath is pretty straight forward and without question.
A few days ago, there was a MarketWatch article published that summarized the difficulties Tesla's competitors are having going electric. The article goes through a litany of companies in electric vehicle manufacturing having difficulty catching up to Tesla. Some of the companies include Volkswagen, Jaguar, Dyson (yes that Dyson), GM, Porche, Toyota, Kia, China's Nio, etc. The article even includes mention of Harley-Davidson briefly halting production of its LiveWire electric motorcycle due to charging issues via low-voltage home outlets.
Like most of the country, winter-like temperatures came early to South Dakota. But this past Saturday southerly winds brought warmer temperatures briefly back to my neck of the woods. I of course took full advantage of the opportunity to ride my 2017 Cam-Am Spyder RT within and outside the city limits. All in all, I put close to 60 miles on my three-wheeler.
Nothing is better in life than having great friends that you can be yourself with. Or in this case, not yourself.
As you get older and busy raising your family, you will find making friends is more difficult than it once was. Finding friends that you not only get along with but also your significant other gets along with...well that's a whole new level of complexity no one ever prepared me for in life. When you find those other couples, appreciate what you have because my experience tells me those are not only important but rare friends to have in your life.