PermaLink Maybe we should talk about the wabbits again...07/09/2012 01:52 AM
You get old, you find your real focus. Read this.

I remember the afternoon my late father brought three big cardboard boxes back from the Radio Shack store in Brockport, New York. It was late August, 1977, and those boxes held an original TRS-80.

Those of you who ain't my age, or ain't from the USA, I will wait while you go Google it.

My dad went to bed at 9:30pm that night.

I stayed up all night writing code for that little slate-gray beast. And the night after that, and after that, and hundreds or maybe thousands of nights after that, on everything else he brought home on loan. NorthStars. CompuColors. Commodores. Can't even name all the beasts.

Going to college just made it worse. Hewlett-Packards. CDCs. Crays. APPLES! Holy SHIT! Apples!

My sleep cycle hasn't ever been the same, these 30-some years later.

But you know what?

I've found a WORSE addiction.


I will never go back.

A lot of my friends in the industry now have sons or daughters in their college age, and I really hope they don't encourage them to go into our industry.


Because it will eat your ass and spit out your soul.


Page back up and read that again.

Unless you are a genuine WIZARD -- and I'll be the first to tell you, I am not -- it will eat your ass and spit out your soul. You will end up writing shit code, not because you want to, but because you're writing to a spec written by pinheads for numbskulls, and if your code even works the first time, you will be looked up to (in your zip code) as a god among humans and you may get a bonus equal to your car payment that month, and next month, you will get laid off by someone you've never met in your life.

As preparation, please BitTorrent the George Clooney film, "Up In The Air." Seriously. Do it.

I admit my own complicity in this horsecrap.

In the 1980s, I, and others like me --- people who genuinely believed in technology as a force for good -- fucked it up. We made it look too easy. We did some great stuff for bullshit salaries, we stayed late, sometimes didn't go home for days, and we got the corporate suits used to the idea that Software Engineering Is A Commodity.

We fucked ourselves.

I know I fucked myself.

Fast forward to 2010. Thanks to my underpaid flailings, I have a tough little farm in the Blue Ridge mountains of Maryland. I have some of the best goddamn wabbits in the East, and they actually NEED me.

I go out in those hutches, pop the gates, and the kits come up to me and nibble my eyebrows and lick my hands. I pour out the feed, shovel over some good hay, spoon out sunflower seed and oats, and they actually appreciate it.

Not a goddamn one of them talks to me about "social business," not a single one has ever uttered the bullshit phrase "reach out," and they could give a fuck about my mobile strategy.

They're the most mobile beings I've ever known. The most social. And when they "reach out," there's actual paws involved.

Fuck, I wish you all could know what that feels like.

Those of you who've known me a while will understand just how appealing it is to me.

I come in from the barn smelling like wabbit whiz.

I never come in smelling like corporate bullshit.


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Blabber :v

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2. Jason Hook07/09/2012 05:30:17 AM

My name is Jason and today I used the phrase "reach out".... Sorry. I feel dirty now.

I've been in this game for an age now. I've always wondered what I'll do when I eventually grow up

The key I'm told is to find something you love doing and do that. Currently I'm dreaming about owning a shop that makes and sells brilliant beverages, has a running/bike shop at the back, has a stage for comedy and music in the evenings and some very comfortable armchairs. For now though IT is my means to an end (just wished I'd saved more).

At 4x I feel like I'm waking up, and getting a sense of who I am. This blog post was a joy to read. I'd use the word "resonate" if it hadn't already been hijacked by the corporate bullshit bingotrons.

I'm very glad to hear about your passion for Wabbits(Tm) Mrs Hook and I would refer to ours as boo-noos.

Keep writing stuff.

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