52

It's been a couple of years since my last birthday post, and I want to get into the habit of blogging again, so here's another intermittently-annual State of the Kris post.

The last year has been pretty good, and the new year has started with some significant changes. I've been elevated to "Team Lead" at work, so apparently all the work I've done to exude an air of irresponsibility was for naught. The last couple of times I became a manager, I quit within a year, but I hope this time will be different. I like the people here, and don't feel like I'm in a hopeless position like I did those other times.

The other big change is that my wife and I are finally buying a house after a few years of renting. It will be nice to be able to do some landscaping and to put whatever holes in whatever walls we want. It's a little farther away from work for both of us, but we like the area, and the houses are $100K cheaper than the equivalent houses in the area where we've been living. We weren't really planning to buy a house this year, but our landlord told us he was thinking of putting the property on the market, so we looked at our options and were actually surprised to find that buying a house was doable.

Wife, kid, and dogs are still doing fine, as are parents and siblings. One of my brothers moved into a house near my parents' house, so we've all been seeing one another more often.

I've taken several online courses in data science and machine learning over the past couple of years. I can't call myself an expert in either field, but it's cool to see things that were considered science fiction when I was in school becoming mainstream. I don't know if my career will steer into either of those directions, but they do seem more interesting than what web and mobile-app development have turned into.

Last year I started studying martial arts. I've been taking classes in Wing Chun Kung fu for several months, and have just started adding some Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu classes. I don't plan to fight anyone, and I haven't learned enough for effective self-defense, but it's been a great way to get some exercise and do something completely different from my other hobbies. A BJJ class is a lot like spending an hour doing push-ups, sit-ups, squats, and crunches, and I'm always exhausted and sore at the end, but I love it.

My wife joined a bowling league. I never thought I would have my own bowling ball and shoes, but she talked me into it. I haven't joined a league yet, as the martial arts takes most of my free evenings, but I bet she will eventually convince me.

I'm studying Chinese using Duolingo and French using Rosetta Stone. My wife bought me an electronic drum kit last Christmas, so I've been studying the drums too. It sometimes feels like I have a lot of "hobby chores" to get done, and my TV-watching time has really suffered, but it's been fun to dabble in all these things.

So, anyway, I'm having a pretty good life. I'm always ready for that to change, but I've also been able to shed a lot of the worry that has plagued me all my life. I've been reading a lot of Stoic philosophy, which is a bit of a fad right now, but it's something I first encountered when I was younger. It's always made logical sense to me, but now I'm absorbing it and following its principles better than I could before.

Anyway, that's all for now. I do plan to blog more often, but don't know about what yet.

© 2003-2018 Kristopher Johnson