Category Archives: Self Improvement

Being Around Good Writing

Share this:  

I am generally reading a lot of stuff. Most of it is technical “how-to” stuff. Lots of software development stuff. Some of what I read will take the form of news articles. I consume readings here and there. I seem always to be on the look-out for something interesting to read.

In many ways we are blessed with this vast world that we call the Internet. All sorts of information on all sorts of subjects is all right at our fingertips. The amount of information on it is growing every day. We can go on with our lives, consuming our media from spaces like the Internet, and something is slightly off. But as we move from moment to moment we’re unaware at those times of this “off-ness.” At least I’d have to say that about myself.

Today, I happened to run into some writing on-line that was really good writing. It was more than just being void of typos, or errors in grammar. It was more than the fact that it contained interesting or useful information. It was the beauty of the prose. It was written in such a way that if the subject of the piece had been something that I had no interest in, I still would have wanted to read it for the shear delight of how it all sounded in my head, how the author’s care defused out of the writing, off the page, into my head, into my being. I would want to enjoy the thoughtfulness the author had in piecing together their sentences.

I’ve read things like this in the past. But thinking about it, this past sadly has become a distant past for me. It brings into focus how much of what I read and the little bit that I have written… is dull, one-dimensional writing. Somewhat clear, perhaps communicating information mostly accurately, but soulless.

Are we rushing on carelessly, generating content on one hand, and sloppily consuming it on the other? We are not machines. We are humans. We are creatures with souls. We are not machine learning algorithms trying to quickly find the right answers. At least I don’t think that we should be.

Reading good poetry is cathartic for me. But I forget this. I’ve been too dang lazy to really do anything about it.

I’ve heard it said that to be a good writer you need to be reading a lot of good writing. I have come to the conclusion today that I want to start to be more intentional about reading really good writing on a regular basis. Not just so my writing will improve, but so my creative humanity will be nourished as well.

Perhaps, (just maybe), I should trying writing poetry and not just reading it. Poetry not only communicates the message of the poem, but it’s important how it sounds. Maybe that’s why a good poem touches something deep inside me: it take more thought, more intention to make it sound a certain way. The thought needed in devising the rhyming and the meter go beyond the basic message of the poem. If done really well, it should also enhance or extend the meaning of the poem!

Well, I think I am done saying what I want to say of this subject for now. I am glad I got these thoughts out of me and “on paper”.


I’m writing these ideas out to press them down into my mind. To hopefully nudge me to be at least a little more thoughtful. More thoughtful about words and their effect on our soul.

How Much Water Should You Drink?

Share this:  

My dear wife Yvonne has been trying (and rightly so) to get all of us in our household to drink more water. She found a page on the Goodhousekeeping web site that shows you how to calculate the amount and printed a copy out for herself to use.

I thought that this would be a perfect little coding application and preceded to create a Pen on CodePen that you can use to easily figure out how much water that you need to drink daily. You can add the members of your family and it remembers the values on that computer/device for that particular web browser (it saves the input values locally).

Note that when you exercise, you need to drink even more water than the base calculated value. This makes sense when you think about it because your body will be sweating during this time as a way to cool your body. This means more loss of water! But it’s worth it right? We need regular exercise! Just make sure you’re drink enough fluids like water so you can rehydrate!

BTW: You probably already know this, drinking caffeinated beverages is dehydrating since caffeine is a diuretic. For every amount of caffeinated fluid you drink, you should drink an equal amount of fluid without caffeine to balance it out (I learned about this during a running clinic at the Chicago Area Runners’ Association (CARA). When exercising, it probably makes sense to avoid caffeinated beverages altogether.

See the Pen How Much Water Should You Drink? by Orville Chomer (@orvilleChomer) on CodePen.0

Here’s to a happy, healthy life of good choices!

Share this:  

Journey BagNew Bag for Laptop And Other Stuff
Robert Scoble did a post on his blog about his bag. Given the fact that I am needing to carry more stuff around lately and have had problems with my back carrying around my current bag, Robert’s post pushed me over the edge! I went out and ordered the same bag. I had to special order it, but it should be at the store tomorrow.

A Status Report

Share this:  

1 to 1s.
I’ve been doing quite a few 1to1 sessions at the Apple store lately. Mostly on Finalcut Express. I’ve learned quite a bit about it. I recently took a 1to1 on Garage Band. Got that pretty much down. If I want more I will have to migrate to Logic Express or Pro. I think Garage Band will meet my needs for now.

College.
I’ve begun the process of getting my college transcripts to Devry. I plan on finally getting a bachelor’s degree. I want to finish what I started years ago!

YouTube Contest.
I entered a contest on Youtube to win a $300 light-kit. I didn’t win but it was allot of fun and I learned allot in the process.

Day Planner.
I got filler pages for my Franklin day planner. I think I now have the impetus (the fire in my belly) to put the thing to good use. Basically, to keep track of my schedule and the things I want to accomplish.

Anniversary.
The wife and I just celebrated our 6th. Took an extra day off and went to the zoo. Very enjoyable day.

Work.
I’ve been able to be more mentally engaged. Though far from perfect. I am seeing improvement here and it is encouraging.

iPhone Dev.
Went to the July Cocoa-Head users meeting in the Apple store. was okay. Also signed up for the Chicago iPhone Dev Camp that will be in August. I need to devote some more time to this. I need to be spending more time reading through the on-line documentation.

June 27, 2008

Share this:  

There’s so many things rattling around in my brain right now (as usual) and its hard to know what to pick out to talk about. And I want to write. Many times during these brain log-jams, I just throw in the towel and I don’t write a thing.

I think the best thing to do is start typing. Just start typing into the blog.

My attempts at programming the iPhone are kinda so so. I have fits of programming attempts. My main road-block seems to be learning how to use XCode properly.

I’ve talked to people who work in the Oakbrook Apple store and the big Michigan Avenue Apple store in downtown Chicago. Not suprisingly, beyond knowing how to use the iPhone, they don’t have any info/help on how to program the thing. Gosh, I wish I had gone to the developer conference Apple just had in San Fran!

I didfind out about a programmer’s group in the Chicagoland area that meets once a month at the Michigan Avenue Apple Store. The Cocoaheads. I saw some stuff out there about iPhone programming. I am planning on going to their July meeting. Wish me luck!

I finally took my first 1to1 course at the Apple store on Finalcut Express. Pretty good! Sadly, I’ve had the membership for a while now and have wasted several weeks. I am all signed up for another 1to1 though.

Are you an iPhone developer? Do you know XCode pretty well? Do you mind if I bother you with questions? Let me know.

“Cree cree creee creee…”   sound of crickets…

I got to come up with a written list of my current iPhone questions to:

  • Bring to that meeting in July.
  • To give via email addresses shown at the end of the Apple “how-to” videos.

Am I babbling? Probably.

My health (panic attack and anxiety issues) has been gradually improving as I have been:

  • Staying away from caffiene
  • Taking GABA (An amino acid)
  • Taking 5-HTP.
  • Taking B Vitamins & Magnesium.
  • Trying to eat right.
  • Taking a multiple vitamin.
  • Trying to recollect what I did right for the day not what I did wrong.
  • Trying to recollect what I completed, as opposed to what I didn’t complete.
  • Not only let my body rest, but my thoughts rest too.

One thing that has been therapeutic, has been gardening.  I’ve created this whole new garden bed in my back yard. It’s got this nice edging, cedar mulch, and I’ve planted 3 new bushes! I hope that they survive.

The bushes have some new holes in allot of the leaves. I looked on the underside of the leaves… no bugs were found. I’ve now added flowers and garden lights to my garden bed (some flowers have not been planted yet). Oh, and I have one tomato plant.

I still have dreams of living in Hawaii some day (on the beach). Okay, I don’t want much do I? 😛

Visited my dad at the nursing home. He was quite lucid. Haven’t seen him that lucid in quite some time. I know its not something I can expect regularly. If I had my druthers, I would live by the ocean in Hawaii and my dad would live with us and we would have in-home healthcare for him. I don’t know if my dad would live long enough for this to happen. I can dream.

Some Good News…

Share this:  

I thank God that some good stuff has happened…

  • My external 1TB hard drive is working. It was the power cable that didn’t work. A power cable is allot cheaper than a new drive!
  • Scheduled someone to come out to the house today and remove the bird’s nest and replace the vent that popped out.
  • I have begun the process of importing video from my camera into FinalCut Express from the work I did in St. Louis. This will probably take most of the day due to the hours of video taken. Once it is done, I can clear the camera’s hard drive (which is currently full).
  • I’m doing some abb exercises in addition to some exercises that my wife gave me. These are helping. I think this has reduced my discomfort by 35-40%.
  • I’m getting a full body massage tonight as well as Sunday Afternoon to ease the pain and loosen things up in my neck and shoulders.
  • I’m going to the chiropractor on Monday (its about time). I looked in the mirror two days ago and noticed that I’m really out of wack. No wonder my neck hurts!
  • I actually got some real measurable work done for my job. That really helps one feel better emotionally (at least me)!
  • I’ve done some work on a web site that my sister and I are working together on. I got the access to the mySQL database that I set up for it working properly.
  • I ordered an IPTV service for my house.

Not bad for the last three days!

Kinda Where I’m At Right Now

Share this:  

For some people like me its hard to complete things. The mind can be this heaving ocean that floods the corners of my skull with all sorts of ideas. Some seem very cool! The frustration starts when I try to decide which ones I’m going to pursue and put some energy into. My mind wants to move around. So its hard to work very long on one idea.

I’m getting better at following through on an idea, but it is still quite a struggle. Who knows? Maybe it will be a struggle the rest of my life. Health improvements can help I’m sure: eating properly, exercise, taking vitamin supplements…

That’s a struggle too since I tend to eat bad food, drink pop as a comfort to my frustration (I hear processed sugar can work like an opiate in the brain).

The Kinoki pad testing is slightly stalled at the moment. I’ve fallen behind on my Six Sigma class I’ve been taking, and I’ve not done any work on the project with my sister for awhile.

Part of the blame could be placed on panic attack symptoms I’ve been having of late. These have dissipated as I’ve gotten back to being more disciplined in my eating habits and excercise. I’ve had to really struggle to get back to some half-way decent baseline.

Last Friday night I talked myself and my wife into buying FinalCut Express for my Mac. I was excited about some of the post-production problems I hoped it would solve. Naturally, after installing it the program would not work. The splash screen would come up and then the program would silently end… without any messages or anything. That was very discouraging!

I tried everything I could think of… I Googled for information, tried a few things, no dice! Finally I called Apple. Guess what Steve, it doesn’t always “just work!” I waited about a half and hour on hold. Yuck! Finally, I got through and, working with the guy, I was able to get FinalCut Express working. Whew!

Let’s see, I’ve done no work on Chomer.com, or any of my other forward looking projects. But I won’t quit! I want to write a post soon on what’s important in life.

Until Later… God bless!

My Six Sigma Class Begins

Share this:  

I signed up for a Six Sigma Green Belt course that you take on-line. It officially began February 1st. I just really started getting serious about it last night. I’ve got to get off my mental couch and get cracking!

Tonight is the first “live” class. This will be happening every Tuesday night for the remainder of the course. The rest of the lectures are videos with accompaning slides. The course also came with a thick binder with more information on each module.

I am trying to take notes in a way that the notes could be the starting point for creating my own Six Sigma “prep class” on Chomer.com! It’s just an idea… we will see where this will go!

Wish me luck!

A Little Disappointing

Share this:  

When I got home last night I was hoping to get at least one item of the three that I am expecting.

  • A DVD for Val’s Art Diary
  • An order of Kinoki Pads
  • A book called “The Da Vinci Method”

But to no avail. Sigh. The book I didn’t really expect since I just ordered it. But I’ve been waiting awhile for the other items.

1 2