Oldskooler Ramblings

the unlikely child born of the home computer wars

Archive for May 1st, 2008

It must be my time of the month again

Posted by Trixter on May 1, 2008

About once a month I look at everything I’ve accomplished, and compare that with everything that I want to accomplish, which inevitably leads to what I can never accomplish, and I get depressed. The frequency of this is relatively stable; what has changed over the years is the amplitude. It is taking me longer and longer to snap back to someone who is simultaneously cheerful and productive. Trying hard not to overstress the metaphor here, but I fear someday I will disappear into a feedback loop and the resulting shockwaves will shake me into a completely different person, one who doesn’t give two shits about all of this and will disappear into a completely useless hobby, like collecting pencils.

Oh, sorry — MORE useless than my existing hobbies.

What I cling to, what I defend to others who don’t understand dorking with old computers and demos and software and oldwarez and gaming, is that my existing hobbies are about creation and creativity. For example, I program old computers, but I am programming them to do things they have never done in their timeframe, and I release the source so that maybe one other person will gain an extra synapse from viewing it.

Three days after returning from Block Party 2008, I got video of the competitions and awards spread across three DVDs. I offered to edit them into separate files and upload them to archive.org. It has taken me nearly a month to do this in my various pockets of free time, not all of them spent wisely. During this time, I witnessed entire events blow by, such as Jason Scott knocking another one out of the park at ROFLCon. Or, more troubling, my looking at ROFLCon and simply not getting it.

The more I work at all this, the more I’m convinced that it wasn’t OOP that stumped me for three months, but rather the fact that I am really just not that good at what I would like to believe I’m good at.

I look around me and I see remnants of at least five different things I’d like to accomplish someday — soundcard museum, writing a real 8088/CGA demo, software collecting, selling excess hardware on ebay, making another MindCandy DVD — and the entire time I know that none of them will probably ever get done.

I need to release some ballast or I’m going to sink. I just don’t know what to let go of.

I’ll bet none of this is making sense to you.

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