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I've been Ween'd...

February 22, 2008 9:09 PM

No. Not “weenied”. ;-)

Sometimes you miss out on jokes in life because of one little missing thing that once known puts everything in perspective. In this case the point of perspective was Barry Ween:

http://www.barryween.com/

For those that haven’t read the comic books in question I highly recommend them for anybody that felt they were too smart and misunderstood. I managed to hit it just right and find all four used on Amazon but they only show 2, 3, and 4 on there right now and number 1 is just too classic to miss collecting.

Suddenly a great number of cartoons make more sense - Jimmy Neutron, Dexter’s Lab, and quite a few that I can’t recall at the moment. (I knew them a minute ago! Honest!)

Besides comics there’s a number of things out there in fandom including the one that got me to look at the Barry Ween comics in the first place:

http://www.yuletidetreasure.org/archive/37/flowersfor.html

(Written by cadhla who I will say is a writer on par with some of the best and well on her way to having to eventually be subjected to endless book signings and requests for sequels as far as I’m concerned.) ;-)

Before even knowing more than the name Barry Ween that story actually made me _care_ about the characters. A tough thing to do in a short story. Even if you don’t read the comics I suggest you read the story.

And now that I’ve read the comics the story make an even bigger impression on me than it did the first time.

But story regardless reading those comics suddenly makes and connects a world I didn’t even think about.

But here’s the funny part. I spent time growing up with a lot of people that were smarter than me. For many years I was Jeremy to their Barry. And it was good.

It was good growing up with those minds around me. One of them was a master programmer who I wasn’t all that close to but just exuded that raw intelligence that you don’t normally see. Another one was a girl who was smart, funny, and fantastic with electronics and music. There were others that I don’t even recall their name any more.

And it wasn’t that they just seemed brighter it was that they _were_ brighter. You could tell. Almost any of them would have been right at home in a lab coat writing formulas on the wall or nose deep in some sort of technology.

I was fortunate enough to have two of them for friends. I’ve lost touch with one but the other I talk to on a semi-regular basis. When it comes right down to it it’s frightening how smart they are.

For years and years and years some part of me resented them. Not a big part but not a small part either.

But here’s the other funny thing. I didn’t know it then but I would turn out to be just as smart. And in a lot of ways I am.

Think of it like this. You can either build a generator that is designed to be turned on and run almost immediately at a maximum speed. Or you can design a generator that starts slow and then slowly increases and increases and increase being incrementally upgraded each time so its maximum speed is unknown. There’s an upper limit but you might not reach it before the generator is no longer in use. Those other people are the first type, I’m the second. I don’t know where my upper limit is but I haven’t even come close to it yet. I’m not a genius yet but I don’t stop getting smarter each day so it stands to reason...

But in my case there’s a problem. The generator is not quite right.

Think of it as if there’s a single ball-bearing in a high-speed generator that is only slightly out of round but just out enough to cause the generator to develop a vibration that puts it’s usefulness to a minimal level because you have to reduce the RPMs to a point where the vibration isn’t an issue.

And so it is with me. I constantly find myself slowing myself down so I can get things done. I’ve figured out the problem long since but solving it is problematic.

The problem is that I have plenty of raw horsepower so to speak but I don’t have the knowledge or processes at the base levels to utilize it as well as I could.

“So what? Just take some courses on your own time and fix those things.”

Not so easy. Remember said generator? Imagine that you can’t ever ever ever turn it off. How are you going to fix it? Now imagine you have to fix the generator, still running, _from_ _the_ _inside_.

A sticky problem. And one I’ve struggled repeatedly to solve over the years.

The thing with primary skills is that to learn them it often takes loads of time to fix them if they’re broken. (You basically have to throw away what you know and start from scratch THEN pile on all the other things you’ve learned. At least that’s how it is in my case.)

Now with the purchase of the house I have some of that time but also now that I’m going to have that time I’ve discovered another problem. The generator is ramping up in speed.

So as we speak I“ve got to fight even harder to slow down so I can fix the bearings on the generator so it will run smoother.

I don’t know if I’ll be able to do that effectively...




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