The Boston Diaries

The ongoing saga of a programmer who doesn't live in Boston, nor does he even like Boston, but yet named his weblog/journal “The Boston Diaries.”

Go figure.

Monday, June 09, 2008

The time, where did she go?

My blog became too much like work.

And since a) this is supposed to be fun, and b) I'm not getting paid for this, I just kind of stopped updating this for … hmm … looks to be yet another month.

This year I've been rather sporadic with the updates here.

The problem—basically, I'm lazy. The significant entries take forever to edit so I'm inclined to do the quick and dirty entries that consist of nothing more than a link to a page but that feels like such a cop-out that in the end, I just didn't do anything.

That, coupled with the disruption in workflow for the blog. Prior to switching DSL providers to The Monopolistic Phone Company, I would email my posts (I ran my own email server at Casa New Jersey). It was easy—just send the post to XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX and that was that. After the switch (because The Monopolistic Phone Company blocks outgoing email connections), I would have to copy the entry (as a file) to the webserver, log into the webserver, and run a command to add the entry, then delete the file afterwards (since it was no longer needed). Four steps instead of one, which was just enough friction to stop the posts.

Sure, I could have used the web interface, but a) I hate editing text in a web browser and b) the web interface doesn't work anyway ( (I'm not sure if it's a bug in Apache or not, but it does have to do with how mod_blog is configured in Apache).

But really, it comes down to laziness, and especially laziness in not looking at the email problem futher. Above, I said that The Monopolistic Phone Company blocks outgoing email. Well, yes, but not entirely; you can still initiate an outgoing SMTP connection but only to The Monopolistic Phone Company email server. The email server at Casa New Jersey wasn't configured to do that. Nor did I think to configure my email server to send mail via The Monopolistic Phone Company email server.

Sigh.

And that has removed just enough of the friction to get the posts flowing again.

Oh, that, and several readers asking if I was dead.


A nuclear family

As a real young kid, I thought my Dad's family was large. I spent the summers at his parents' house and thus got to know his four younger sisters and their families (two were married at the time, each having two kids). As an only child, this, to me, was a large family, all living within biking distance of each other (one sister just a block and a half away from my grandparents' house, which was cool because they had a pool).

My Mom's side of the family though, seemed small. Partly because Mom's parents lived so far away in exotic Florida (I should note, that at the time, I was living in Brevard, North Carolina) and her only brother, lived somewhere in Michigan. Granted, he had five kids, but somehow, his family didn't seem that big.

All that changed when Mom and I moved to South Florida. Suddenly, Mom's side of the family exploded with people.

To begin with, we moved in with my Mom's aunt Freddie (making her my great aunt), sister of Mom's Dad. And over a few short years I met a great uncle (and for the remainder of this post, if the relation is via marriage, I'll add “in-law”; things are going to get crazy in a bit), Freddie's four kids (Mom's cousins, my first counsins once removed) and their families (first cousins once removed-in-laws, second cousins), parents and siblings of my first cousins once removed-in-laws (told you this was getting crazy) and my great uncle's kids and their families.

And then things got crazy what with divorces and what not. I mean, what do you make of the fact that my Mom flew out to Arizona to attend her father's sister's son's ex-wife's husband's birthday party? (okay, I could have simplified that as my Mom's cousin's ex-wife's husband's birthday party, but it wouldn't sound as crazy; then again, the fact that my great aunt Freddie went to the same birthday party (which would make it her son's ex-wife's husband's birthday party) just adds to the craziness).

After Mom died, I pretty much lost contact with Mom's side of the family. Everybody either lived in Michigan, Arizona or Montana, and I stayed in Florida. And there's some regret in that, if only because I never did get Freddie's recipe for cornbread (although I did get her recipe for fried chicken).

A cool thing happened on Sunday though—I received an email from my second cousin Rick Hill (a grandson of my great aunt Freddie). Just like that, right out of the blue, and I've been spending the past day or so getting caught up with (nearly) everybody. I was, however, sad to learn that Freddie died last October.

Obligatory Picture

[It's the most wonderful time of the year!]

Obligatory Links

Obligatory Miscellaneous

You have my permission to link freely to any entry here. Go ahead, I won't bite. I promise.

The dates are the permanent links to that day's entries (or entry, if there is only one entry). The titles are the permanent links to that entry only. The format for the links are simple: Start with the base link for this site: http://boston.conman.org/, then add the date you are interested in, say 2000/08/01, so that would make the final URL:

http://boston.conman.org/2000/08/01

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