Ye shall know the Truth and the Truth shall make you free



This was my 3rd week of class and the 1st week of funemployment.

I’m older than some of my professors. I’m wearing a backpack that weighs approximately 100 lbs. I really need to reexamine my shoe choices. I’m drinking about 3 cups of coffee per day and I’m having a blast.   No one seems to notice that I’m a generation older than my peers. I gently slipped in among them like a thief in the night. It’s much easier than I thought. I nearly broke down crying in the bathroom my first day of class because this is something I’ve always wanted but denied myself for so long.  I’m taking 17 units, which is a bit much but I ended up really liking all of my courses and professors and couldn’t bring myself to drop anything.

I have a locker at the gym and whizzing past the numbers in clockwise and couterclockwise directions brought me back to high school. I almost took a picture but there is a no photo policy in the locker room which is actually really quite nice.

My biggest challenge so far is packing a lunch. I don’t have much room in my bag but I’m sure I’ll figure it out, I’ve surviving on Kind bars and clementines.

I unashamedly snapped that photo on my first day of class. This is the gorgeous Main building. The motto inscribed on the facade is  “Ye shall know the Truth and the Truth shall make you free”.


“I believe in intention and I believe in work. I believe in waking up in the middle of the night and packing our bags and leaving our worst selves for our better ones.”

–Leslie Jamison, The Empathy Exam

I take my work seriously. I put in the time and effort.  I’m present, driven and detailed.  I must move forward. The hardest thing for me to do is sit idle or feel like I’m not growing. I’ve been comfortable for years while moving on a good trajectory but lately it hasn’t been enough. I’ve endured certain sacrifices like a soul-crushing commute and a pay-cut. The money I didn’t mind so much, since it’s never been my goal. But the loss of time, 3 hours per day, sometimes 4 started to wear like an incessant high-pitched noise that you can ignore for only so long before it drives you mad.

So that’s it.

I’m quitting and I’m doing the scariest of things. I’m going to school full-time. 

People think I make rash decisions, because I make B I G decisions. But what they don’t realize is that I’ve been chewing on the decision and the myriad paths of possibility that lead from it for months, possibly years.

As I mentioned before, I make plans. I live humbly and I always have a safety net and a backup plan, and an emergency extraction if that fails. I have to believe in  a life that is better, wider, and more true than what I’ve done so far. I am very close to where I want to be and it’s taken many difficult decisions to get here. I will never be content if I don’t make this choice for myself, right here and right now.

Happiness is a choice and you have to be willing to make the big decisions once the truth is there. 046


Starting next week I will be full time student at University of Texas at Austin, or as it is known around these parts, The University.


New Year


I’ve always loved resolutions and plans. I’m a planner.

It gives me great joy to make lists and know what I want to accomplish in the coming days, months, years. I like to sit and reflect on my life and consider what is working well, what could be improved and weighing what I want against what I have.

So I really don’t understand all the recent hate against resolutions. It’s coming at me from all sides of the internet. Memes and blog posts and personal opinion. People disparaging the idea of a new year and a new you. Well fuck that.

We all deserve the room to grow and change. Our current culture of celebrity worship, vitriolic news coverage, and manufactured busyness leaves no air to breathe. The one time of year that many people stop and reflect on their lives and what they want to change is now being shunned as inauthentic or shallow.

Well I don’t care if resolutions are no longer popular, I’m going to keep striving and becoming and growing better.

I’ve always found this time of fallow darkness and rebirth cuts closest to the bone. I become sleepy and reclusive, cocooned in layers and cardigans and as the sun turns longer once again it’s seems so natural to me to turn my face forward and look to what newness is on the horizon and to welcome it with open arms.

Intentions for 2016

  • Quit my job (again)
  • Cultivate order and calm, including a tidy and organized home
  • Invest in my health again — lift/run/yoga
  • Goal weight
  • 4.0 GPA
  • Bike commute (LL)
  • Read 26 books in 2016
  • Linux Systems administration certification
  • Go outside more

Whew! okay that’s a LOT I know, but some big changes are coming for me in the next few weeks and I think I’m going to be freer than I have ever been.

More to come soon.


Coming Home to the Song in my Bones.

It’s been a big year. Full of growth and change.  I keep asking myself the same questions. All of which seem to intersect in painful and delicate ways.

Where should I live?

School or Work?

How much can I love you before I lose myself?




These are deep questions that you only face at critical junctures. The answers are not easy, with far-reaching effects.

I feel like I can at least answer the first burning question, and dear reader, I think we have a winner.

I’m a vagabond at heart, I love the road, trips to entirely new places. Bare white walls just waiting to be loved with adventures around every corner.

I’ve lived all over. West, east, and mountains mostly. Yet, always facing forward and looking to the next adventure. Now, to my surprise, I’m growing more entish. I want to put down roots and I’ve blown into Austin on a wild westbound wind redolent of fried tortillas and horchata. When I arrived I didn’t know if I would stay. I’ve been balancing on one foot and heading out of town on the other and now I’ve finally wrestled with my contrary demons and discovered I have actually arrived.

 2 years ago I made a mixtape titled Arrival based on my exodus from Maryland to Texas. It’s funny how you despite all evidence of truth you refuse to accept it? Even for years at a time it seems.


My bones knew I would stay and finally I can hear it in my heart and in my mind. My recent trip home to LA was the catalyst. I had a lovely time, explored old haunts and new, loved my family and held them close. But at every step, and every turn I couldn’t shake how much it wasn’t home which has never happened. It came over me simply and all at once. This incessant question finally answered, a sea-change overwhelming in it’s rightness.

A u s t i n  i s  m y  h o m e.


It wasn’t easy, I have a hard time making permanent decisions. I like to keep things open and in planned order. I have exciting opportunities in the bay area and Portland calling my name, which only added to my confusion. Recent bouts of crippling anxiety and insomnia were simple physical manifestations of my unease. The place I have arrived is so quietly calm that it casts a ringing in my ears from the absence of my chattering and sometimes shrieking worry.

It’s a good place to be.

Hello twenty-fifteen, it’s about to get real.


P. S. I haven’t made any new years resolutions except to be kind and gentle with myself.

with love,










“We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.” – Kurt Vonnegut

This is what I told them when I quit my job. It wasn’t a surprise to anyone. They knew that eventually, someday, I was moving on. I wonder in hindsight if maybe it was a surprise because we all know that someone who keeps telling you about all the magical and amazing things they are going to do if only… 

I don’t believe that person. I’ve never really even liked that person.

Anyway, I quit my job and it was fantastic.

I went to Portland, I interviewed in Silicon Valley, I chased turtles in Maui. I slept in A LOT. I read books. I drank coffee late and studied Cisco routing and switching in my pajamas for much of the time. I cooked nice meals and started to actually go to yoga (Dharma Yoga ftw!) I swam at the Austin public pool and rode my bike. 

I landed softly but I wasn’t sure that would happen. The most important part is that I took that leap, grew my wings, and found myself so much happier and challenged than I was before. It didn’t hurt that I was jobless for nearly 3 months.  I’ve worked a taxable job since I was 15 and worked random summers even before that. I cannot describe how free and positive my experience was and how much brighter everything seems now. 

So if there is something that you’ve been meaning to do, or if there are shackles on your heart or on your dreams. Cast them off and sprint madly for that cliff. Leap off knowing that you will always be better off chasing your dreams. 


Closer to the Truth


I arrived at a point in my life where I began to realize in earnest that how I wanted to live was a very sharp contrast to how I was living. I’ve been trying to get closer to that truth for the past few years. I can’t just throw my hands up and say Oh well, I guess I’m not the person I wanted to be. I feel like our culture is inclined to just give up on ourselves and put little thought into self-actualization. What does that have to do with bicycling? The two may not seem to have much in common but it’s just a way I would like to live. I think I wrote bicycle commute on my Life List 5+ years ago? Jesus. I just need to know that I can still be the person that I would like to be and this is definitely part of that.

I’ve been searching for a bike for a while. I wanted something light and easy to maneuver in the city that didn’t need a ton of maintenance and also not a target for thieves. After riding this beauty all over Portland I was hell-bent on finding a bike when I got home.

Summer 2014 097

I’m small so finding a bike in my size and at my very low price point was a challenge. I was going to buy a new bike from but since I’m new to bicycling as a mode of transport I figured I needed a beater bike to learn on anyway. Thank god for Craigslist.

I found my sweet little Miyata for under $300, in great shape and it was even delivered. I had to have the seat post sawed down but other than that it fits great. I’m not putting in serious miles yet but just being able to get on my bike to go to yoga or meet up with people is pretty damn nice. I’m still moving closer to my own truth.

Oh great…


It’s like the antithesis of an inspirational quote.

I just read this quote about a week ago and it comes to mind every time I catch myself procrastinating by doing something mundane. I generally don’t allow myself to do anything fun when I’m procrastinating. I’m currently cramming weeks of network routing information into my brain. So I find myself putting off starting the next module or chapter by…

…eating pistachios and reading shoe reviews on Nordstrom
…cleaning the bathroom
…clipping the cats nails while they are rolled up like angry burritos
…talking to my mom
…writing postcards
…making mixtapes that I never put on disc

So what does this say about what I should be doing with my life? I think maybe reclusive eccentric with too many cats.

Monday inspiration.