Jason Becker
March 28, 2023
March 27, 2023

Some days I’m really unclear why I’m spending time working on software versus preparing my body and life for our inevitable failure to deal with the climate crisis.

March 26, 2023

They don’t really make Barber & Beauty Supply Shop Fixtures & Supplies buildings like they used to. I find myself thinking of how different our economy used to be, and how unsurprising this building ran into trouble in 1929.

An art deco building in Denver with the words Barber & Beauty Shop Fixtures & Supplies. 1885 Buerger Bros 1929 Located in Denver, CO

Shrinking is as great as everyone says.

I almost never take a Live Photo, but I almost always love receiving one (especially if the photo-taker/sender doesn’t realize they’re taking Live Photos).

“I’m not done scaring him yet.”

Too good.

Had a major set back today where I took myself far too close to a place I thought I had mentally left behind. More work to do.

March 25, 2023

My brain is really good at souring good brain days with bad brain days.

Recharged a bit from #AEFP2023, I’m getting so much needed deep focus time on work that prepares Allovue for the next 10 years.

Recently I’ve been feeling the desire to hold a controller and play a game. I have a Mac and a Switch. Is there a good game that is not overly twitchy or challenging, but immersive and tells a story with say, < 15 hours of game play?

March 24, 2023

I gather the whole internet will tell me I’m wrong, but on its surface, The Internet Archive seems to be arguing for something that seems obviously wrong to me.

March 23, 2023

If your conference doesn’t have a table of Diet Cokes for me to crush because your hotel coffee is nasty, are you even a conference?

I play so much volleyball I’ve gotten on three separate lists about the same announcement to venue changes in Baltimore.

Thinking about the implications from Vermont study that components of the ABILITIES index was a better determinate of SPED costs than primary disability. I don’t see any districts doing that kind of analysis for staffing or weighted formulas.

I just had to set a document it 150% so I can read it properly. I’m so old.

March 22, 2023

Listen to Your Daily Lex for such bangers as, “I don’t know why everyone is anti-oxidant. I’m pro oxidant.”

March 21, 2023

Hi Jason,

Yesterday morning, I found myself in the middle of a maddening juxtaposition.

After years of again off again genealogical research, I’ve made great headway into identifying my paternal Great Grandfather who was out of the picture before my Grandfather was even 2 and was never spoken of again. It’s a knowledge gap I know my Dad would love to see filled.

During breaks in this difficult quest, I’ve gathered intel and filled in other information on other branches of my family tree. I’m finding facts that lead to imagined stories of soldiers (Civil War (Union army, I find myself happy to report), WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam) and stories of great passages to new lands where my ancestors knew no one, not even the language, in pursuit of a better life.

Everyone’s family tree has such stories - individuals sacrificing and working hard to better their future, the future of their kids, the future of those who may come after. You and I represent thousands of people who did what they did and through time, their perseverance and dreams came together to make us possible.

And yet…

The United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released their latest report in a long series of reports warning of the damage we are doing to the planet. More than that- the catastrophic harm we are doing to humanity itself. (Because, let’s face it - after humans have gone, Earth will be just fine again in time.)

I am not a student of history but I know there are plenty of times throughout the existence of humans where we both faced foes together toward success AND couldn’t get out of our own way, our own shortsightedness or selfishness which lead to our doom.

We stand on the brink- and have been for decades, if we’re honest- and not enough people who have the power to make these choices toward saving ourselves (or, really at this point just making the future a wee bit less awful) are doing enough to solve these problems.

And here’s the kicker- WE HAVE THE TOOLS. WE HAVE THE KNOWLEDGE. We know what needs doing. ACTION is the last piece left. This is what enrages me the most.

Just three generations separated from hard struggle, I have leisure time, technology beyond my ancestors wildest dreams, and the means to do more than just feed and house ourselves. And in three more generations beyond me (or less), due to simple lack of action and infuriating shortsightedness, my family’s story- all of humanity’s stories- could be lost to what will become once again the daily toil and basic struggle to survive, to exist, in uninhabitable conditions.

I carried this infuriating bucket of feelings around with me all day. Annoyed at the powerful for making choices along the way that harmed the future. Pissed at those in power now for being unable to agree, decide, and put plans to action. Heartbroken for the future my son, his peers, their children will face. And let’s be honest. We live in Virginia, not Africa or a tiny agricultural island nation - we’ll be “fine” for longer.

And then…

We watched Galaxy Quest after kiddo had gone to bed. And you’re right, it has absolutely no business being as good as it is. A beautiful parody clearly made with great love and pitch perfect in pretty much every way. It also seemed to be a salve to the dread that consumed most of my thoughts that day. Never give up. Never surrender.

Sure, I am only one person - sadly incapable of saving the world. But there are still things I can do - and I will do them. Because giving up is not an option. This is why I love movies - sometimes there’s a larger message that strikes you in just the right way.

Have a great week!


Hi Julie,

I don’t know how, but I just knew that you were going to pivot to climate change from your opening. Maybe I just share that same deep dread, that same feeling like I’m pounding up against a wall, that same complete lack of power against are true foe.

I have a lot of dread thinking about the world in 20 years. By Grabthar’s hammer, and a lot of international cooperation and willingness to pull our heads out of our asses…

I find it really hard to understand how unprecedented the threats are today. I have no problem understanding their potential severity, but I think about the threat of nuclear war, the World Wars, the global flu pandemic (heh), or a world without antibiotics, and I wonder if every generation faces a world shattering threat. Does it feel that way at the time? Is it that each generation is called upon to actively demonstrate the will to continue?

We live in a world that has been so focused on individual action and maybe, just maybe, small community action. We have created a culture that abhors cooperation. We have whole parts of this country that meltdown at the idea of a collective decision to do something to save ourselves, fed an absolute horseshit information diet. We just have to get out of our own way.

We recently had a major revelation in my family via 23andMe. I’m not sure how comfortable folks are with me sharing the details, but let’s just say we learned about a pretty earth-shattering feeling secret that was taken to the grave, surprising all of us– in a good way. We’ve been able to welcome some new people into the family and expand their understanding of where they came from. Unfortunately, most of my family’s history was lost during the Holocaust. We have some idea of the scope – at one point across my father’s and grandmother’s side we counted close to 100 known relatives that didn’t make it– so it was nice to add to our tree for once.

Last night I finished The Once and Future Witches by Alex E. Harrow . It’s about a world where women have had power, but are constantly having to fight to keep it. Power is constantly stripped away from them. Their ways are unappreciated, ignored, reviled, and stolen. It’s about colonialism and feminism. But there is a real journey of empowerment by the end, and in these unprecedented times, empowerment is something we all could use a little more.

Time to pack to head out of Denver for a conference. Looking forward to next week’s letter.


Is there an action I can take as an individual to best support pushing to as much wind and solar power as fast as possible?

Sesame Street outtakes on YouTube are great way to put a smile on your face.

If you’ve never listened to The Incomparable, this episode on the delightful Sky High is a great place to start.

March 20, 2023

I have this recurring feeling that’s not quite the same as regret. I miss a choice I used to have even if it’s one I didn’t take advantage of all that often.

I miss that restaurant I only went to two or three times over 5 years. I miss that trail by that apartment I used to live in that I only walked or bikes twice. I miss that friend who moved away that I only went out with for a drink two or three times.

I don’t miss the specific times I did these things. I miss knowing they were options, even if when they were options they’re not the ones I chose very often. I wonder if I miss them because their absence is a remind that time has passed. I wonder if I miss them because they force me to stare down the harsh reality of impermanence.

Or maybe I miss them because today I wanted to walk on that path, with that friend, and then go get a drink at that restaurant even though those three things never coexisted in time or space.

My timing for hitting is not back, but I had a really good night of blocking so I’ll take it. 🏐