Categories
New Music

My Computer Kept Crashing…

My computer kept stopping with a “system overload” error as I was trying to record the acoustic guitar part.  My Macbook Pro is old but mighty (for a while longer I hope!). I changed some parameters and finished the track. Then, listened back. Horrible. “This sucks, @#$%! it” and I closed Logic (recording software). 

Then I sat there and thought of all the advice I give my kids… “It’s supposed to be hard, that’s how you learn” “It’s always darkest before dawn” – and lots of other supposed wisdom. So, I shook my head and re-opened the song. “I’m going to dive deeper and find this damn song” – An hour later I found it. The perfect vibe for the song – something that has eluded me for years. I may have had a little breakthrough.

So, here it is –  the unreleased song of the month: “Let Me In”

Categories
Life

Bird on a Horse

Bird on a Horse

That’s it. This is the entire post.

Categories
For The Good Life

Golf 2020

Really into golf this year. The pandemic has injected a renewed interest in the game. Most courses I’ve played have been packed and I see a lot of young players.

John M & Me at Randall Oaks Golf Club

A few years back, it seemed the sport was dying. Who knows, this could save the industry?

Categories
Entrepreneurship Growth Startups

The Problem With “Failing Fast”

As an entrepreneur growing a startup, I’m constantly pushing the envelope. Always trying new things and ways to reach people and inspire them to action. In the startup world (especially tech), everyone likes to throw around the phrase “fail fast.”  Which means, find the stuff that doesn’t work as fast as possible so you can get to the stuff that does work.

The problem with this is that I’m human, with feelings.  When I come up with an idea and push it out into the world and it falls flat, it wears me down a little. When we believe in an idea and we execute on it, there’s a part of us expecting that it will work right. When it doesn’t, sometimes we have to face some harsh truths and adjust course.

After 1000 failed attempts to create a commercial incandescent light bulb, did Edison say to himself, ‘this is stupid and I’m an idiot.’ He probably felt that, but tried 1000 more times and got it right. That belief in the vision to keep going in the face of many failed attempts is some of the most difficult terrain any person will encounter.

Then there are the days where you’ve applied the lessons learned and executed to find that you’ve succeeded. If you can get through this cycle enough times, you are a superhero.

Categories
For The Good Life

Us

There are good humans
There are bad humans
White, black, brown, tan, orange, whatever color
There are people with irrational beliefs based on some tragedy from years past
There are people with mental issues and chemical imbalances
There are politicians

There are soul-less people and there are amazing generous people
Politics can’t solve every issue.

Your vote can solve some public issues
Your heart can solve the real issues.

Categories
Life Self-Help

I Threw A Rock Once

In my youth, 30+ years ago I threw a rock. I was mad at an institution that I felt failed me. I was angry. I was afraid. I was frustrated. I blamed the institution.

What I learned over time of course, is that it was 100% on me. My failures, my anger was all due to my own fear and confusion. We are all looking for someone/something to blame when things aren’t going right. This is primal fear at work. Every single human experiences it. Given the right (or wrong) set of circumstances, fear materializes in many different ways: addiction, abuse, homicide, vandalism, etc.

Every vandal, looter and criminal running the streets right now are projecting a fear that has been festering for a long time. They are using #BLM as a vehicle to expel the fear.

We are dealing with two distinct issues right now. Racism and fear. One needs to be dealt with externally and one internally.

Categories
Life

What I Learned During the Pandemic

Sitting at the pool in West Palm Beach Florida on March 17th, I looked around and was grateful for being there. News was starting to get more and more serious about the pandemic and lockdowns looked immenent.

Sitting here today, May 31, 2002 about 2 1/2 months later, the world is a much different place. (And it looks to be changing again after the George Floyd murder).

So, what have I learned over the past 10 weeks of being “quarantined?” (I put it in quotes because I’m not sick, but we’re in some sort of preemptive quarantine). Here’s the top 10 list:

  1. We can save about $1000 per month by not going to restaurants
  2. Puzzles are fun for about 3 days
  3. I can sit and do nothing and be ok
  4. I don’t trust the media at all, probably less than the Government
  5. I’m learning to appreciate quality time with family
  6. People can be very irrational
  7. Fear rules most people’s lives
  8. My day-to-day is really not that different in non-pandemic times
  9. I played the guitar and drums about the same or maybe a little more than usual
  10. The world will never be the same and perhaps better?

I made this shot glass as a fun little diversion and keepsake for this unusual situation.

Now I need to go get my free coffee from Panera.

Categories
Music New Music

Quarantine Sessions: Inthemiddle

Here’s a song about growing older and stopping to take in the scenery. This is the second song in the quarantine sessions series where I just use my iPhone voice memo to record a single take.

Here’s a link to Distrokid (my distributor) and they have links to all the digital services.

Categories
Music New Music

Quarantine Sessions: American Girl

After playing all these livestreams, it dawned on me that I could record these raw versions and release them. So I’m doing it.

Here’s the deal.. Single take, no edits no studio magic. Just me+guitar+iPhone.

First song to be released is a Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers song – “American Girl.”

Here’s the link for all the digital services.

Categories
For The Good Life

Remote Work and Learning

As a software professional, my work has mostly been done remotely for many years. I’ve had a daily routine that really didn’t change when this pandemic hit. But as I talk to people, I am definitely in the minority. So many people were in the habit of commuting to an office as their “hub.” My hub has been my house for about 5 years.

As many are saying, companies have invested to properly outfit the tech to get their employees productive at home. This new reality is going to be a paradigm shift for just about any business that is office-centered. I think what we’ll see is a 50/50 model, where employees work from home half the week. This shift will likely change the commercial real estate requirements, but maybe not for another year until the new norm is played out. Of course, there are side benefits like lower emissions, less accidents, better quality of life.

The same pattern goes for e-learning. The school paradigm was designed in the industrial era when kids needed to be occupied outside the home for 7-8 hours. There’s never been a better opportunity to change the school paradigm. My thought is 33/33/33. About 33% of the week in a classroom. 33% collaborating out of the classroom (or sports) and 33% at home. Not only will this help the child learn in a modern fashion, it will help with overcrowded schools. There is a enormous opportunity to teach kids self-discipline. A routine that they need to be accountable for themselves 33% of the time. This pattern will develop organizational and time management skills, which is one key area a lot of kids lack.

I’ve felt the benefits of working remote and being responsible for a productive routine and it’s helped me immensely. I believe we can drive a long-term positive outcome from this Government-mandated quarantine.