26 May 2008

My Current Obsession

Music always has been a big part of my life. I remember learning all of the album names for the songs and groups that I was into during my teenage years. (Obviously, using the word "albums" dates me.) I used to think that I would go into the music industry somehow. Of course, not knowing how to sing and having only a two-year orchestra stint on cello on my musical resume most likely would have relegated me to a behind-the-scenes role.

Of course, none of that worked out. As often happens with our early idea of our life's ideal, things get added, dropped, and refined along the way. Even though I'm not in the music industry, I still have a strong appreciation for music.

I was listening to mashups a few weeks back when I discovered the very excellent "Every Car You Chase" by Party Ben, which combines the 80s classic "Every Breath You Take" by The Police with the modern-day "Chasing Cars" by Snow Patrol. And since I've heard that song, I can't get it out of my head. But in a good way.

I didn't even know they had used the original Snow Patrol version on "Gray's Anatomy", especially since I've seen about 15 minutes total of that show. But I do admire that show's taste.

If I lay here/If I just lay here/Would you lie with me and just forget the world?

20 May 2008

Happy 1/2 Birthday Mike

I have two wonderful little boys. (Well, maybe "little" isn't the right word, since they both are way about average in size.) Today was the 1/2 birthday of the younger one, Mike.

Happy Birthday, Mikey! You're growing up so fast; I now understand why my parents used to say that about me and my siblings.

In honor of the "Little Guy," check out his rendition of the popular local chant "Go Pack Go!" Of course, as with everything, he is accompanied by Erik.

(I only hope Mike continues to grow up quickly, so that his voice changes soon.)

Long-Term Thinking

This past weekend, I worked both Saturday and Sunday for a total of about 22 hours or so. The project that I'm working on is behind schedule, so the natural response is to put more hours against it.

But is that really the best way? Why is the willingness to work longer hours seen as a desireable trait? I don't really understand that rewarding someone for being ineffective and planning poorly is done so consistently in our work society.

Don't get me wrong-- I'm not trying to get out of doing my job. Actually, I'm doing more than that. I'm trying to get out of doing my job poorly and inefficiently. I would think that, as an employer that is struggling to turn a profit in our current economy, my company would embrace my opinion and ask how we can do things better. But that's not happening.

It seems like this is yet another case when the necessity of the short-term goal (completing this project by a certain date) drives out any hope of addressing a long-term goal (how do we prevent this type of occurance from happening again?). But why should I be surprised? Isn't that the way our society works these days?

Look at our personal savings rates. Look at the current mortgage crisis. Look at what our politicians do and say while campaigning in a particular state right before its primary. Look at how our schools chase after any fad in the hope that it will "fix" our education system.

The Law of Unintended Consequences has proven true in situations too numerous to count. Yet we still continue to live in such a short-sighted way.

12 May 2008

Yes, This is Lame

I've noticed that my postings on this blog have really taken a hit. Not that I was ever Stephen King or anything, but I had planned to write more than I have. I promise to do better, so watch out! At least this is a start, even though it is rather lame.