I stopped reading

For the third time in about a month I heard someone described their process of skimming a book. Seth Godin told Gary V he reads a book until he “gets the joke”, and then he puts it down. I heard someone else describe their process of reading the beginning, the one chapter with the meat, and maybe the conclusion. If you do this can you really say you read the book?

I have a point of no return with books. It’s somewhere around a third. If I’m a third of the way through and I realize I don’t like the book, I’m stuck. I’m in it until the end. In fact it’s rare for me to stop reading a book at all. I think I can name all of the books I’ve read only part of in the last ten years – A Game of Thrones, The Great North Road, and The Satanic Verses. When I gave up on that last one I tweeted, “I’m halfway through the Satanic Verses. It’s beautifully written. Every paragraph is like a poem. I have no idea what it’s about.”

I don’t normally read biographies but I picked one up because it was about a person I’m interested in and it’s by an author I know I like. I don’t know exactly when I started reading it but I know I’ve moved three times since then. I never read one book at a time so I’ve read a bunch of other books since then. I’ve read at least one other book on the same topic in that time. But this one is dragging on. It just won’t end. Sitting down to read it feels masochistic at this point. But I’m more than halfway through… just stick it out.

I mentioned this to Chrissy last night and she made a radical suggestion. “Stop.”

Well I’ve thought about it, and I decided to give myself permission to stop reading this book. I don’t feel good about it, but there’s a stack of books on the table I really do want to read. Time to move on.

mario warp zone
Did you really beat the game?


This One Perfect Moment

I was walking down the street passing the courthouse and there was a black guy with dreads walking straight at me. He was wearing a NY Rangers home jersey. As we approached I raised one hand and pointed at him, and pulled the zipper of my hoodie down with my other hand to reveal my NYR t-shirt. His face lit up and he put one hand straight up in the air. I matched his smile and slapped his hand as we passed wordlessly. So much was communicated but not a word spoken. It was a perfect moment on the streets of Raleigh.

SpiderOak Syncing Problem

Check your Activity log – you may be surprised to learn that SpiderOak stopped sycning a long time ago. This has happened to me several times now. If you’ve reached the point where you’ve googled variations of “SpiderOak stopped syncing” and landed here I’m going to assume you’ve already stopped and started the application, rescanned, and rebooted.

The next thing to check is the version number of your software. If you’re not on the latest one it may stop syncing. This happened to me once I believe because they updated security certificates. There’s no way around that – you have to update.

If you’ve tried all the basics and you’re running the newest version the only thing left to do is reinstall SpiderOak. It’s not as bad as it sounds.

In OSX delete it from your Applications directory, and check to see if there’s a SpiderOak directory in /Library/Application Support. If so, delete it. Don’t touch your Hive or other synced folders! Go to https://SpiderOak.com/download/ to get the latest version and reinstall. When you sign back in look for an option labeled “Reinstalling an existing device”. It may be a bit buried. Select that. All set.

If it still doesn’t work I’ve got nothin’ for you. Sorry.

Escape Room Tips

1) There’s a good chance you found this because you googled “escape room tips”. Stop that. Stop it right now. Embrace the game. It’s supposed to be a challenge. Also consider you might be paired up with strangers, so it’s really not fair to ruin it for them. Don’t be a dick.

2) Listen to your guide when they bring you in. They want you to make it out! Listen carefully, they may give some cryptic clues.

3) Dress to do some work. You may be crawling around, climbing, etc. Be prepared to get a little dirty.

4) Keep talking. Especially if the group seems to hit a dead end. Just make observations, even if they seem obvious. Keep the group chatting.

5) Move on. You’ve been staring at that picture frame for a long time now. Maybe it’s something, maybe it’s not. Come back to it later.

6) Try everything! Even if you’re pretty sure it won’t work just keep trying things. Move things. Put things in other things. If nothing else a light may go off in a teammate’s head. But resist the temptation to keep doing the same thing over and over.

7) Examine things even though you just saw your teammates looking at it. You may bring a different perspective.

8) Don’t post spoilers.

For when I need more than 140 characters.