After hours (okay days) of social media research, talking to friends and avoiding advice, a new car is in the family. It doesn’t quite look like this one (but I wish it did).
I’m headed out to find a car today. It probably (definitely) won’t look anything like this 1936 Rolls Royce (Nexus image). My dad had one similar to this; he bought it in Great Britain to restore, shipped it to California, polished it a few hundred times and did numerous other things to it, and sold it to a car collector. I’ll probably be at a Nissan dealership. I’ve spent a few hours online getting prices (don’t you love buying online?) and now comes the sign-on-the-dotted-line moment. Sigh. I really would rather have the Rolls, all things considered.
Had to share; this selfie is just too cool. Then check out Alex Chacon’s website for other great rides at:
So I asked a small group of people – all writers and editors – to give me list of things they couldn’t do without. Being writers, and with imposed or self-imposed deadlines, they sent their lists to me anyway. I’d like to think it’s because they like me or found this interesting. However, I know that the actual reason is that writers will grab onto just about anything that will help them procrastinate a bit. Even the hyper-disciplined writers are good at this (I’m a genius at it). So here’s the list in no particular order with initials in place of names:
Sticky notes and Google
Hearts of Space (my editing music)
Good, comfy pens
Writer friends, near and far
Medicare, Social Security, IBM, Apple, the Wright brothers, Ben Franklin, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Martin Luther, JFK., The Beatles, Crosby Stills Nash and Young, Pablo Picasso, Charles Darwin, Robert Heinlein, my parents (!), my late sister Beth, whoever-the-hell-my-real-estate-agent was in 1979, my wives (past and present) and someone yet to be revealed to me
Eighteen pills a day
Number one on my list: email. Number two, coffee!
Two things I try to use every day, and wouldn’t want to do without, are — humor, snuggling, cussing, warm water, refrigeration, people who rise above the petty, JJ’s editing help, avocados, grilled fish tacos from Santana’s, good books . . . whoops, was that more than two? And…
Powerful female vocalists
Love of my wife
My kid and grandkids
A roof over my head and adequate food to eat
Good friends, most of them writers, all of them neat, witty folks
Tuesday night dinners and Friday breakfasts
A working car
The running hugs of my children as I come through the door
The connection my iPhone and iPad give me to boundless information (and entertainment)
The implacable support of my mom
My wife and all that she does for our family
Belief that with personal effort, I can make tomorrow better than today
ways to be creative
So looking at the list, it’s easy to pick out the primary universal thing: People. Even individuals who close themselves off in front of keyboards in quiet rooms need connections with people. There’s nothing new in that, of course, but it was an interesting exercise to see what people, who often are by nature and their career choice seen to be loners, still need. And what do I need? You.
Yes, click on the link ’cause it’s seriously interesting. You can applaud me later.
(Hand model: Ryan)
Summer, the days are long and warm. Trips are planned, taken, and remembered. Students and instructors are deep into summer classes and the world spins on. I had planned a summer road trip up the California coast, into Oregon and finally Washington; cut over to Idaho, and return through the deserts of Utah, Arizona and Nevada. Then a summer class suddenly needed to be taught and I volunteered with one proviso – I still needed to take the trip. It was a hybrid course and I only had to figure out what to do for the one or two on-ground sessions I’d miss. No problem – I held them on the road. The plan was to drive and actually see the West so a motorhome was rented. Perfect (not that I was going to spend the night in it, there are great hotels along the coast). But it was easy to drive, fun to chill in when something looked interesting, and the kids loved it. Best thing for me was the motorhome’s Wi-Fi. I just held classes from a beach or deep in the redwoods. Some of the students were in San Diego, some scattered in other parts of the world and we connected and learned. So is that distance education? Nope, that’s education in the same room wherever you happen to be anywhere on earth.
I’ve always thought that the London Eye is a fairly good visual representation of social media. Each pod is an individual; we can all see each other, we’re on the same wheel, we’re dependent on each other, but playing in our own space. It keeps spinning and we learn with every revolution. We share the same knowledge gleaned from what we see, but process and use it in very different ways. Plus it’s cool.