Journal Entries

Smashed my driving finger

Yesterday I was driving home from the beach in the Westy with the dogs in back. I tried buckling them down on the bench seat because they slid around so badly on the drive up.

It was like that scene in Jackass where the guys were rolling skating in the back of a box truck.

At one point, I stopped and gave them ice water, and the little one, Billy threw up in the bowl.

I got about 3 miles into the drive and realized they were probably worse off because they would eventually try to get off the bench and end up strangling themselves. I pulled over in the town of Tomales. It’s just a wide spot in the road.

I left the van running and tried to rearrange the bench into a flat bed while trying to keep the dogs from bolting out of the van. Once I had them up on the bed, I closed the heavy sliding door on my middle finger.

In a brief moment of shock, I just looked at my finger and though, damn. Then I tried to pull it out, but nope, it actually clasped shut. So I had to reach over with my free hand and open it up.

injured finger

At first, it just looked a little smashed and blueish. Within seconds it started to bleed. The only business in Tomales is a bakery and they were closed. So I had to make due with whatever I had in the van cabinets. That happened to be the tail end of a roll of black duct tape and a dried out container of baby wipes. So I made a makeshift bandage and taped it super tight to stave off the bleeding. Just a enough to get home in 2 hours.

My treatment worked. The finger is all sealed up, but I’m not sure about internal injuries. The finger in general is in bad shape after I broke it or something a couple years ago when my hand got caught in a door handle while holding a leash. My bigger dog, Sadie, freaked out and bolted while my hand was still turning the handle.

It’s been a banner week for odd injuries. Last Wednesday, while playing with an Oculus Rift, I ran into a weight rack and took a gash out of my shin. That that weekend, I was shucking oysters, and managed to open all of them no problem. Then on the very last one, I slipped and jabbed a hole in my palm.

Who knows what’s next.

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Filling in

I’ve been hanging out at the beach for the past couple days hoping to get some time to focus. Last night a friend hosted a comedy show at Hopmonk in Sebastapol. His middle guy was a no-show, so he asked me to do fill in and do 15 minutes.

I wouldn’t say I was prepared, but I do have a few jokes in the chamber for just this kind of occasion. I’ve always had this fantasy where someone coaxes me into playing a number at a party and I sit down at the piano and just start wailing on the keys like Ray Charles. This isn’t quite that, but it’s close.

I know what it’s like to have someone flake out at the last minute. In fact, the person who did last night, has done it to me a couple times.

It was good crowd, mostly women, who are way more fun as an audience. There was a party of 8 women in one corner. You zero in on them and you’re all set.

It was fun being up there and acknowledging I wasn’t planned. That’s a good way to de-escalate the expectations and build them back up. The fun part was asking what kind of jokes people wanted to hear. Did they want to hear sick or gross. I was a little surprised how many wanted sick. What’s worse, I couldn’t think of too many sick jokes that I’ve come up with over time. I can think of plenty, but I really don’t tell them on stage.

In the end, it went very well. People laughed, and that’s all you can use to measure success when doing standup comedy. That, and I got paid. Nice.

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Re-engaging

I’ve been detained from these entries due to other work stuff that I’ve been plowing through. Now that I’m back, I need to re-engage with Scription Network idea. I was building up so much momentum with it last week.

The concept of having both fixed solutions and hourly solutions isn’t new. The way I’m going to market with it, is. The trick is to thoroughly document things you’re doing the first and second time, so that it’s easy to spell out in terms of a prescription. For example, I just did a project for client that required me to do something I have done countless times before. Most of what I do is from memory or extremely reactive. I don’t always know ahead of time what I’m going to do. I just have a general sense of what needs to be done.

The collection of tasks I’ve come up with to complete the recent project I did is very easy for me to do because I understand the how and the why. That’s where the expertise comes in. If I listed all the things I did, it still wouldn’t be easy for someone else.

The hard part for me is to remember to take the time to document my steps. The reason i don’t is I don’t always expect to ever do these things again. While I was able to execute everything well within the time frame I told the client, i could easily do it faster if I just followed my own steps in an orderly fashion. It’s a recipe that’s all.

So maybe the piece for Scription is to make it easier for people to write their recipes?

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Leaf Blowing my Mind

Sunday, 7:30am and some asshole is out with a gas-powered leaf blower cleaning the massive parking lot of a church a block away. I finally had it. So I leashed up the dogs and headed over.

Of course the guy couldn’t hear me over the exhaust-spewing racket and industrial strength ear protection. So I used some universal hand signals.

He cut the engine and I flat out told him to stop. I didn’t ask politely. I didn’t make a case. I did what most people won’t do – which is make a stink. I rambled on about the timing and wanting some peace and quiet.

He started to explain his case, but I cut him off. What could he possibly say that would convince me that 45 minutes of noxious noise and fumes is necessary to remove a negligible amount of pine needs from a 2-acre parking lot.

Common courtesy would dictate you don’t make that kind of noise in general, on a Sunday morning. But common sense would tell you a leaf blower is an exercise in futility. Whatever work you do with one, is completely undone, within less than an hour of finishing.

If I were to pull up in their lot while they were holding their Sunday service, and blast a recording of the that leaf blower at the exact same level of decibels, you know the cops would get involved.

I’m on something of a personal crusade against those stupid tools. Crusade is probably too strong a word since I haven’t done anything other than yell at people when they use them. But honestly, following some actual process like getting a ban passed sounds absolutely futile. The only thing actually works in the moment is flat out telling them to stop.

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Mask Mandate Back

I’ve got a show tonight at 3 Steves and I am mostly looking forward to it. It’ll hopefully be our first outdoor shows, which are way more fun. Also, they just reinstated the indoor mask mandate for our county, and so I’d prefer not being inside for now.


Meanwhile, I’m still plugging away on the Scription Network (working title). I have been giving it the sniff test to friends to see if they get it and whether the differentiation is relevant and plausible.

My friend Mason had an interesting idea to go public with my idea as if I were a member of the network instead of telling everyone it’s a new venture I’m developing. It’s an interesting twist. Tell people hey, I’m part of this new thing for in-demand experts such as myself. It’s for people who like the shit show, who aren’t afraid to jump into the fire. We’re fixers and problem-solvers. We only like hard problems. We’re here to tell you what you should do, not to do whatever you want. If your way is working, then you definitely don’t need us.

People want simple direct solutions to sticky problems. They want to take a pill to make a problem go away. The old me would say that’s just not the way thing works. The new me says, fine, you want a simple solution to a hard problem. Here, take this. It’s $2000. Let’s see how things go. It might be a cure, it might just be a band-aid. It’s not guaranteed to work, especially if you don’t follow-through on your end. But if you do this, you will be in a better spot. And if we’re to continue to work together, this is what I need to be set and in place for us to be effective.

The concept is people in the Scription Network are experts. Full stop. You can’t be in here if you don’t have at least 10 years of domain experience. I don’t care if you sent 10 years at Apple. I know plenty of people that repeated the same year 10 times.

Everyone in the network is available on a retainer basis. That is you, can sign up for their time and pay them on a regular basis and they will tell you what you should do. These are recommendations and suggestions, yes. If you ignore their advice and things go wrong you only have yourself to blame. If you follow their advice and work with them, and things go wrong, they will know what else to try. That’s what make someone an expert.

Each member of the network also has prescribed solutions you can try as well. These are best practice approaches and tactics that you can pay for and be executed by the network. One can easily look at any of these prescriptions and opt to do them on their own, or find someone else who can do it cheaper. That’s totally fine by us. If you have that kind of time, you probably aren’t the right fit anyhow.

Recruiters

Don’t get me started on them. Gatekeeping should not be left to people who don’t know what they’re talking about. Scription Network is pre-screened. It’s self-selecting. Only an expert would want to be in this network.

We’re not doing the job of finding anyone any work. We’re just making it easier to find us, the in-demand talent.

Name Your Price

You heard that right. You tell us what you think the value of making your problem go away is worth, and we’ll tell you whether or not we can deliver it. Every engagement can be profitable for us.

If you can’t put a price tag on it, let us help you. The Scription Network is not transactional. However, when it comes to the Prescriptions, pricing is take it or leave it. That’s only because there’s no point in haggling and nitpicking over things

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