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Life Update

18 days without a post.  What’s up with that?  When I last wrote, I was on a tear – I’d been posting regularly for weeks, and had a backlog of things to write about.  Without warning, I hit a dryspell.  I find it easiest breaking these spells by just spewing for a few minutes about what I’ve been up to.

House: It’s no surprise that buying a house takes time.  I also report that it sucks.  Buying a house is just not fun.  I’m convinced that I’ll be happy with the end result, but the process just sucks.  It’s a lot of money; there’s no one in the process that you can really trust.  There are a million opinions about how to make decisions around price, value, what you can afford, what’s broken, what’s fine, etc.  And there are a million people who will charge you a million different prices to answer these questions for you.  How do I tell them apart?  Fuck if I know.  I build software, and read politics!  How the hell do I know what (if anything) I should pay for a radon test?

As bonus, the sellers have been really flaky.  I signed the purchase and sale agreement on October 8th.  The sellers didn’t provide a signed copy until the 27th!  (They signed right under the sentence that says “We agree that time is of the essence in this agreement.”)  Thankfully, Leader Bank was ready to approve my mortgage as soon as the P&S finally arrived.  

If all goes according to plan I’ll close on November 3rd, movers come on November 4th, and I’ll have my roof replaced and the asbestos removed shortly afterwards.  The lead paint I’ve decided to live with.  Here’s to no licking the window sills.

Bottom line: contractors, lawyers, bankers, and realtors all impede posting frequency.  And I really should be packing right now.

Fraternity: I just searched the archive, and I don’t think I’ve ever really posted about this.  Last October I was elected president of my fraternity alumni group (The Friends of the Lambda Phi Chapter of Alpha Delta Phi, to be pedantic). I was a member of the board in the mid- to late-90’s, dropped off, and came back on in ’06.  The winter and spring were moderately demanding, the summer was fairly light, and the fall has been a ton of work.  The good news is that it’s been very rewarding.  We have 17 pledges (the most in ages) and an energized board.  I’m really excited about what we’re going to get done over the next few years.

When you get elected to a board like this, it also pretty inevitably commits you to a few other responsibilities.  You have to be the face of the alumni to MIT, to other fraternities, to the City of Cambridge, to the fraternity International, etc.  As a part of that I agreed to help MIT’s fraternity alumni group (the FSILG) with their accreditation program.  So, a couple weeks ago I spent a Saturday visiting other houses, interviewing officers, listening, giving advice, and writing reports.  It was a productive process, I think for both sides.

Bottom line: Fraternity meetings, emails, phone calls, and writing all impede posting frequency.

Grandma: Grandpa died a bit more than a year ago.  It’s been a process as the family convinces itself (and Grandma) that she’s not up to taking care of herself.  She moved to assisted living this summer.  This fall has been a process of unwinding 65 years of possessions and selling the house.  It’s been incredibly hard for Grandma, and similarly hard on her children (including my mother).  I’ve been helping out some, but there’s only so much I can do.  Like, helping to throw out old food.  How do you define old food?  If the can doesn’t have a barcode on it, it’s food you should throw away.  I will be taking the dining room set (table, chairs, buffet, and china cabinet) to my new house.  I’ll use them and like them, and they fit the house nicely.

Bottom line: Trips to Dedham impede blog posting.

Work: Work has been good.  I have another post bubbling on the burner about my thoughts on work, but I don’t think I’ll get it out tonight.  For now, suffice it to say that HubSpot continues to outperform it’s own expectations, and the job is personally rewarding and interesting.

Bottom line: Work impedes blog posting.

I’m not going to promise a quick return to regular posting.  Packing, work, fraternity, and moving all loom over the next couple weeks.  And I haven’t arranged internet at the new house yet!  I’ll see if I can get back on the writing wagon in November.

Update: How could I forget politics?  Or the Red Sox?  The Red Sox will wait, but politics will not. Go read http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/.  If you’re a regular reader, great.  If you’re not, go read it.  Now.  It’s the best writing on the web.  Bar none.  I mean it.  Go read!

Comments

Comment from Yoav Shapira
Time: October 29, 2008, 9:13 am

Welcome back 😉