What’s the point of recording?

A future data point
I think that invites optimization.

Mindlessness? No,
And wen communicating?
Getting to the point.

I fucking love hanging out with my pals +
I love seeing the pursuit of an art.
The passion displayed wen owning a moment.

Life is just so long, on average,
I think its a lot opportunities,
To have fun + play smart,
To be present.

You Wake Up At The Rate You Wake Up

This past month I was blessed with the opportunity to live rent free in NYC. My own 1 bedroom in Brooklyn, obligated simply to care for 2 of my best friend’s sweet cat Birdy. This was the longest consecutive amount of time I’ve spent in the city I fantasized about all my life.

Queue Times Square Anthem

My wants going in were relatively vague – low expectations, high serenity I tell myself.
1) bread and cheese.
2) hot yoga &
3) dancing

The first goal was in the bag no doubt – walk any direction and I’ll reach this endpoint within 5 minutes. There was one spot called Vinnie’s – I knew it from past trips to NYC. At one point in my stay, I was there for a consecutive 5 days in a row. My favorite spot turned out to be Fini’s, about 7 blocks away from Vinnies. This praise comes by way of a white slice served with a side of lemon – acid to bring clarity to the rich fat.

My second goal was by way of a recommendation – Yo-BK – a wonderful studio with an unlimited pass and 2 locations. I set my schedule to mimic a personal yoga retreat; meaning in between these sessions I’d stroll between bagel shop, pizza shop, coffee shop, and parks. You’d find me reading books I picked from my friends shelf like Crying In H Mart. I learned that my sweat after a class smells like a pickle brine – different than any run or cycling sweat I’ve experience. I also built a better understanding of what I’m intending to stretch throughout that 26-2 yoga flow. Shoutout to all the teachers that use their time there – godsends of positivity.

My third goal was last minute in nature. My pal reached out just the week prior to check in on me; I haven’t talked with him much since college (years). He happened to live in NYC at this moment and was eager to share personally his top spots. He bought us tickets and brought me dancing at a space called Basement. Two stages with sound systems that pulsed through my body; therapeutic in feeling. A bathroom without stall doors. Smoke dense enough I considered it a dungeon. At one point in the night, he passed along a mantra from Ram Dass – You Wake Up At The Rate You Wake Up. I walked back to my place of rest as the sun was rising.

And yet my largest highlights were none of which I actually penned to paper. Rather these came from being open, available to the moment, a total surprise. A full send of confidence in intuition, honest communication, and whim.

A Craigslist find resulted in a fixed-gear bicycle, delivered to me within an afternoon, accompanied by the owners advice, “Stop signs mean yield, while stop lights are stop signs.” This new mode of transportation transformed my NYC experience, allowing me to navigate above ground, savoring the nuances of streets, neighborhoods, and the language of car horns. Cycling landed me into a plethora of presence-necessary stimulus—the temperature of air on my skin, vibrant lights of vehicles, intersections, bodegas I longed to explore, and the occasional revving of moped engines in the bicycle lane.

In total I put 241 miles in between Coney Island, Ardsley, and Wayne – eagerly skidding to stop, weaving around traffic, and even making connections with other cyclists. When the latter invited me to tag along on their own rides, my heart warmed. I absolutely love seeing others lead in an area with more experience; they bring their own style of risk management – likely better developed habits. There is no reason for me to follow their route than any other, simply it is a course I got to play – a love for sport.

TL;DR this month has felt nonchalant, restorative, silly, and a throwback to high school. To ride through this area was a bucket list item, one I didn’t even have on my radar to realize so soon. I’ve left the city completely infatuated with new thought processes. Attached below are some of my favorite image files secured during my time there.

As I close this thought, I’m here sitting back in my studio. It’s 6am and I’m about to brew coffee. Good Morning.


At 17, I had no vision for my future – I remember leaving my hometown – and on my last week, outside my favorite coffee shop, there I burned a tin full of all the letters from my first relationship. My friends were there with me. We smoked Parliament’s. I drank a flavored Italian soda. At that time, this felt symbolic for ‘moving forward no matter what.’

Today, I don’t keep a tin full of letters, nor a device full of texts (they auto purge), but rather I have memories from twenty five hundred days fading in my head. I spent these last months reliving, processing, and journaling about the years between St Louis and now; how I remember them in the present.

As a way to close this season, here’s a few selects.

Road Dawg

This past week I’ve been on tour. The activity itself is beautiful – a road trip with friends (everyone in the van), a sense of purpose every day (the show), and adding a few new and old friends each day (locals, often sharing with you what they love about their city at that time).

I experience every moment of my friends life for the length of our time together – the moments we open our eyes, when we take off our shoes before bed, sharing meals, inside jokes that span days, and problem solving everything from itinerary to van troubles. Over days on the road, rhythm as a team grows. There’s someone that’s great at loading the gear into the van, others are better at driving, and still some are simply built for drinking beers in the back seat and procuring places to stay. There’ll be a time when a pal needs help procuring a cup of coffee. They definitely need help loading the bass cabs up a flight of stairs. Sometimes they simply need a breather. All of this I think can be similar to a point to point marathon, in that it is necessary to find a comfortable pace you can maintain AND we may as well finish once we’ve started. With attention to the duration as an input, I believe the activity helps to develop patience, and maybe even empathy. The best tours are those where those involved embody agile values. For me, tour is better than any work trip, any resort, any extended-airbnb nomad trip; honestly any vacation I’ve taken.

Inside these creaking van doors, barreling down the highway, I’m with a chosen family; we’ve all radically welcomed these experiences into our life and with each other. I love the time I get to spend with these fools. I hope to continue this.

Rewind The Video

This quarter I reached a new checkpoint in life. I’m delighted for my future self, but my present self doesn’t feel like I hoped – I’m the only one home to celebrate. When I set this checkpoint, I kept my key result vague. This OKR had room for multiple narratives. While in this situation it was only a disservice to my own life; in business I suspect vague key results are methodical.  

Falling back a decade ~ I recall sitting in a college class focused on making a viable business from within the Photography industry. The final project for this class was to build a 5 year plan for this career path. Its purpose, at least that I took away, was to really think forward – committing these ideas to paper (or a google doc). To define the steps needed to reach the desired outcome. Later in tech learning about OKR’s and Jira Epics – these I consider near-synonyms.

I love these types of plans today; the plans that really can take me into a new meta. With these plans, I find myself also noting specific timeframes. By x I should complete y – and so forth. 

Life is gamified for me in this way – a shot clock. I don’t make time for videogames because what I consider main quests haven’t slowed down. One of these years I plan to beat the N64 Zelda’s – just not in 2023. Each time I make these plans, I’ve gotten a bit better at predicting what I can accomplish. I’ve been out of school less than a decade and I’ve lived at least 15 years of plans. The quarterly plans – what I think I can complete in 3 months – these I tend to overestimate how much I can do. This is sometimes froth, but sometimes it’s just miscalculation – it’s often an additional week or two. If I continue to be interested; I roll this activity into the next quarter. The alternative is tossing this froth over to a side quest – sitting along with those Zelda titles. 

At the beginning of May, I finished one of these longer 5 year epics. It just doesn’t feel like I thought it would; I was hoping it would be better than great. I’d say it’s certainly ~ around ~ great, yet definitely not better. I’ve felt just as great from riding my bike or talking with friends. Though, I think I narrowed why this feels different. In my _every day_, I’ve lost my best friends. They were in my life when I set these goals. They were in my life for most of the plan – so much so that I just took it for granted they may not be waiting at the checkpoint. Today, all I have is photos from past moments where I felt they were proud of me. I wish there was a video of these times – to replay – a camera on me as well.

As I write this it’s Memorial Day weekend. To share another look back, this weekend in 2021 I was on a backpacking trip. I remember not having a campground reservation; rather driving down a Forest Road until we reached snow so high the hatchback couldn’t pass. In the morning, we hiked on foot to the trailhead – this took nearly all day. We didn’t get far up the trail as it was still snowy, yet soft enough to break with each step. We saw 2 other hikers near the end of the day. They said about 10 minutes back, they saw a bear. We ate boxed Mac and Cheese and played the card game War until dark. In the morning we walked back to the hatchback. I tried to be into the moment, but I just thought about my shoulders, then my feet. 

In my own life, backpacking is not appealing. I live on acreage. I hear birds when I go outside. I could go on a long bike ride with no weight on my back, take a shower, cook a meal with my preferred tools, enjoy the benefits of refrigeration at any time, and still sleep under the stars in a tent. I also don’t have to drive to the mountains. That’s a con rather than a pro from my current position. For some, particularly folks who always hear traffic outside, I’m sure it’s great.

And now that I’m reflecting, I think I’ve made out better than had I included more details in my narrative when the checkpoint was set. Today I’m 95% sure I don’t like backpacking, albeit I expect I’d try it again in the distant future just to be sure.