I wonder if water and pop have the same effect as beer and coffee. There’s a greasing of the wheels if you will, when the latter is offered. Having a chat with a friend just seems to go better when those are around. Even as a kid it was the coffee shop.
I’ve been doing some chatting these past few weeks with various folks, talking about personal and professional goals. From a professional front, I think we tend to want to talk to people who have gone through something similar, to get perspective. I don’t mean shop talk, I mean actual career discussions. I usually work with a Plan™, where each steps in my career is rather thought out. I find the job that can use my skills but also provide me new ones. I tend not to do the same thing for very long, maybe a couple years, before moving on to the next challenge. The good/bad news is that due to the project I’ve been working on, that progress has been accelerated at an incredible pace, where I’m now into the 5-10 year window of where I planned to be. So this is uncharted waters for the most part and I’m a solid 15-20 years younger than everyone I work with. With 2 young kids. It’s not that I’m bad at the job, just the opposite – it’s that the expectations of the position require some sacrifices at home, which I’m not really willing to do anymore. Suffice it to say, this past year has been a heck of a ride and I’m trying now to get a better handle on it all – with varying degrees of success.
On the personal side, it has taken a very, very long time to find someone impartial with whom I can have an honest conversation. Oh, there’s always family and the close circle of friends for sure, but there are certain topics that require, um, a certain skill set to discuss. I am often unable to communicate ideas that are crystal clear in my mind, due to their sheer complexity and nuance. It’s one of the main reasons I write this blog actually, to practice communicating ideas. My wife and I were talking about this problem last week, and the list of folk on the list of “talk about anything” can be counted on one hand. I have friends with whom I can talk sports, other philosophy, others science, others IT – some even cross across multiple fields. Those that cross ALL the fields, those are really hard to find. So when I found a professional that I gelled with, it was a really cathartic feeling. Exhausting is a better term actually, since I typically don’t have the opportunity to talk about anything. Having to think/analyze/absorb a complex conversation is fun. And the beauty of it, is that afterwards I have the toolset to communicate it more effectively with my family/friends. I know a lot of people have issues with mental health, and just finding someone with whom to connect makes a world of difference.
I did another veteran expedition, Space Madness. It’s a 15 minute run, if not less. It’s such a massive contrast to some of the other expeditions, 30+ minutes in length, that I’m thinking I’m going to skip those other ones in the future. The rewards are the same, though the longer ones have a few more enemies to kill. Not enough to make the drop increases to be meaningful mind you.
I also spent a bit of time trying to figure out my tailor skill stream. With drop 6, every tier got massively simplified – 2 items each, plus a “capstone” for extra points in the talent tree. I took a look at the auction house and there isn’t a single “Master” level crafted item present, which is making me wonder if it’s worth the time/effort to pump up the skill. I have more than enough plat to get there mind you… so I set some buy orders for material and we’ll see where that ends up.
In the meantime, I need to figure out why the load times are so dang slow. The gaming laptop is about 6 months old and top of the line, so…there be something wonky somewhere.