Gratitude for 2023clux December 31, 2023 [life] #health
The year is coming to a close, and as a small amount of self-reflection of my relatively fortunate and stable situation, here's a list of things in life that made me happy.
In general, I like well presented video exposés, impressive video game footage, and watch competitions from everything from piano competitions to SC2 esports tournaments. Some frequented returns:
- yt/BobbyBroccoli :: for great long form science controvery deep dives
- yt/Tantacrul :: for a yearly hinge expose on music
- yt/hbomberguy :: for his yearly expose on who knows what
- yt/thejuicemedia :: for their snappy government parody ads
- yt/MonarchsFactory :: TTRPG concepts and mythology
- yt/mcolville :: TTRPG game mechanics and game design
- yt/chopininstitute :: classical piano recitals and the chopin competition (last winner)
- yt/HarstemCasts :: intelligent starcraft 2 casts from top level player when you need a break
- yt/ESLArchives :: SC2/Dota2 tournament vods from ESL
- yt/AfreecaTV :: more starcraft: GSL + ASL
- yt/DoshDoshington :: for well-narrated Factorio Mod runthroughs
- yt/KimuraTails :: insane Trackmania (united) TASes
- yt/cncf :: boring conference talks on cloud tech, but they allowed me to avoid some flying
- yt/HealthyGamerGG :: Dr K. with a pragmatic stoicism + meditation focused philosophy takes
Would I still watch as much youtube without
2Xon all speech or with ads? Probably not. Long form media is a lesser toll on my continually stretched focus though.
As for actual full-runtime content, most my streaming services were cancelled last year, and the only one left is crunchyroll, which I guess makes me a full time weeb now. I would fight that, but Love is War and Spy x Family were also the funniest shit this year to me.
2023 was an upgrade year, a first since 2017, so have once again delved into the increasingly confusing realm of hardware for my #linux desktop workstation. Wendell from Level1Tech + GamersNexus were the most helpful for guiding me in good linux-compatible setups. Ended up going full
AMD to make my time with
Wayland less painful, and with less funny flags.
The new rig is great. It has ~4x faster compile-iteration cycles, and it uses less power than my old one!
On the steam front, my timesinks were heavier games for a change. One even from this year:
Baldur's Gate 3obviously. I have spent days just theorycrafting its predecessors, and it's GOTY for a reason. Great storytelling, lots of great game mechanic ideas for making
5ebetter. RIP September.
Borderlands 3. BL2 still holds a special place in my heart for its chill coop, item hunting / diablo vibes, so this year, when
r/bl3started being positive again - after years of annoying users by breaking the game, nerfing builds, changing the endgame - and my PC got upgraded, it was time. The weapon farming system is fun, the builds are cool, and the Cthulhu themed expansion really stands out as exceptionally beautiful. RIP July.
- Manifold Garden was the surprise hit. Its infinitely repeating take on first-person puzzle solving, ventures into a deeply psychadelic fractal space, and one that is captivatingly beautiful.
The amount of theorycrafting videos consumed during the RPG periods also shows that the desire to min-max is still very much alive.
To stay woke, I rabbit-holed into home-espresso making (like many of my tech friends), and am now able make a great cup with pretty cheap components (basic delonghi dedica + non-pressurized portafilter + a grinder), given good beans as a result. While the famous hoffmann (or joffman) was helpful for his insights into coffee science, I did not need to min-max this. That said, fun side-project.
I occasionally try to replicate the perfect asian dirty coffee, or a thai style es-yen, but most of the time I just pull a shot, ice it, and pour over some oatly for a great lazy iced latte.
The kube-rs ecosystem continues with 13 new kube releases this year. Lots of features landed; socks5 proxying, rustls default, new configs for watcher + Controller, streaming lists, controller streams interface, oidc refresh, metadata api + metadata_watcher, store readiness.
Thankfully, I can largely PM the ship, and leave most larger features to others. Stream sharing is close, k8s-pb integration can be started, client-v2 is restarted, and am enjoying expanding docs on kube.rs (particularly the controller guide) to simplify future Q/A + upskill adopters.
Stepping outside kube, python-yq has been rewritten in rust. This is both a fun and necessary project for me (not solved by the go rewrite). This is a small project, because we are just deferring to jq, but it is very satisfying how simple things can be when you are not trying to re-invent the wheels.
The helix editor (replacing VS Code) is the first modal editor I've managed to stick to, and a big reason for this is how compassionate the UX is; menus give me forgotten shortcuts, commands are searchable, and the speculative LSP integrations are amazing.
Am actually using helix as my new #pkm rather than
foam because the markman lsp actually lets me do most of what I expect from a second-brain anyway! Symbol search for H1s or H2s, and
Goto definition for wikilinks are both unexpected LSP features.
In a world full of systemic problems, mute + block has never felt more valuable. I have aggressively hit
Dont recommend channel on captive news channels, and
Indefinite mute on excessively drama-peddling / self-rightous profiles mastodon even when I largely agree with their general points.
With global problems, the cost of exposure is a draining negative energy; powerlessness, constant exposure to virtue signalling / schadenfreude, and increasingly polarised and unhealthily dichotomous thinking, E.g. climate change discourse, frequently followed by either:
- denial - thanks to the existence of unrealistic and equally problematic solutions
- anger - e.g. via activists that advocate for engaging in large scale industrial sabotage
Yes, i believe we are pretty fucked, but the fucking will continue whether I worry about it or not.
Twitter was terrible in always exposing you to the angriest threads about this. Thankfully, in its demise, Mastodon is an improvement for what I was using twitter for; cross-link to/from blog-posts, follow posts from experts, and moderately engage while bored on a train. Here the
Mute option actually works, negative echo chambers quickly get defederated, and you can* move instances.
You could make several good arguments for leaving twitter, but that was not the job of this post. I have found a new place, and it's a happier one.
If you want more positivity, you must opt-out of some negativity. Pick your battles.
This year changed my approach to exercise, changing my goals from setting PBs in running events like 2022, to focus on fun, and exploring nearby mountains when they are available.
The biggest treks were the
5h trail runs up Doi Pui + Croix du Nivolet, and the
3d long Kumano Kodo pilgrimage trail with my partner. I also found incredible beauty and focus on hills requiring much less effort such as Doi Suthep, Fløya, & Tindstinden.
There is a concrete beauty to trail running and hiking that I did not get while optimizing for performance. You are always present in the mountains. No podcasts, no "get-it-done" mentality; the journey is its own reward. The experience lasts, unlike a
Bigger hikes are less realistic outside of travel for me, so it's still mostly flats. Air-travel is becoming a harder-to-defend privilege, but I have to recognise that it's not really fair for a society to offload climate guilt on consumers despite a complete lack of systemic regulation.
Like, I am car free and child free, but it's fucked that I feel the need to use that as an excuse.
Beyond the above, my life is still largely routine:
Walk to the park. Grind the coffee beans. Blitz some fruit. Triage issues. Play music. Appreciate beauty. Try to embrace being content, and try to be compassionate. Enjoy time with my partner.
Hoping that can continue in 2024. Here's to another year!