My LinkedIn Ranking

A couple of months ago, my “rank” among LinkedIn connections caught my attention. Now before I lose you, I should mention that this is not going to be a post about how to increase your rank or about a better algorithm for calculating rank, etc. I have no interest in either.

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The Importance of Written Communication

In a post a few days ago, I wrote that the writings of Thomas Jefferson probably had the single greatest impact on my thinking. I thought President’s day was an appropriate day to write a little bit about the letters he and John Adams wrote to one another.

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Oscars Menu 2015

Every year the menu for the day of the Oscars includes food inspired by the best picture nominations.

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I have loved you

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Something new to obsess over - This

I obsess over things. I’m not going to deny that.

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My Heroes

Today is Darwin Day.

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Trouble Maker

Anyone who knows me probably understands why I list “trouble maker” in my online bio almost everywhere I am online. I’m writing this for those that have asked.

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Save the Internet

The “Save the Internet” button I saw on my Tumblr dashboard the other day, along with [Explaining Net Neutrality to My Dad][dad], prompted me to finally put my thoughts on this in writing.

[namedrop]: [oppression]: /why-i-call-myself-a-libertarian-socialist-part-one/ [netflix]: /2009/02/02/links-for-2009-02-02/ [dad]: http://www.feld.com/archives/2015/02/explaining-net-neutrality-dad.html [redcar]: http://themusingsofthebigredcar.com/net-neutrality-madness/ [reason]: http://reason.com/archives/2015/02/08/dont-extend-the-dead-hand-of-the-fcc-to [obama]: http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2015/02/republicans-claim-obama-had-improper-influence-over-net-neutrality/ [speech]: http://www.pakman.com/2015/02/04/a-sensible-approach-to-net-neutrality-by-the-fcc/ [sensible]: http://www.pakman.com/2015/02/04/a-sensible-approach-to-net-neutrality-by-the-fcc/ [history]: https://www.youtube.com/embed/Y6DVTy9KKEc [testimony]: https://www.youtube.com/embed/kkq_zM6U4eo

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My right to believe nonsense

I’m not sure this is the best use of my time, but I wanted to weigh in on the vaccination debate. I’ll start by tipping my hand and saying that I think parents should vaccinate, but I’m not sure how much right we have to make them.

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Get Your Own Blog

Jason Calacanis is back to blogging, and he wrote something a couple of weeks ago that got me thinking again about a conversation I had recently about blog comments. It’s been on my mind for some time, but Jason’s post really hit home for me, so I thought it was time to share.

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I know things that you do not know

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Listening to the kids music

A long time ago, I started playing around with the social features of Spotify. I started listening to playlists put together by people I followed. If you ask me, it’s the best way to discover new music. One of the people I was following at the time was my son. He had put together a few playlists, so I started listening and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. I didn’t even fully understand why. Something about seeing through the window of music into one of your own children. I couldn’t get enough of it. Almost every song had me thinking something like “I wonder why he put this on the list” or “I didn’t know he liked that song.” Sometimes the lyrics really got to me. I know that not every lyric of every song - or even any one song - resonates with him, but I have to think that something about the mood or tone or subject of the song gets to him. So I learn something about him by listening to “his” music.

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Making It

Working in and around education for so many years, and having high school and college age children of my own, I know a lot of people who are 15 - 25 years old.

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The Purge

This is not a movie review. I did happen to catch both movies recently. They were both bad, but not as bad as I had expected - but that’s not what this is about.

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Updating ShortenLinks

I’ve updated ShortenLinks a bit since my last post on the subject so I thought I’d document it again. If you’re more interesting in why I set things up this way, that post and other past posts on the subject might be more helpful.

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Are We Too Careful with Our Words

I’ve been using Cyber Dust for a while now. I really like using it for private chats, but I have also enjoyed following #blast messages and meeting new friends. Add me - I’m +bsoist. Mark Cuban uses Cyber Dust, and a few weeks ago he sent out a blast asking for recommendations to use for his quote of the day - something he sends out via #blast every day. I immediately thought of a favorite quote of mine.

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Cool as the other side of the pillow

I woke up in the mood to do some writing. When I learned that Stuart Scott lost his battle to cancer, I spent a lot of time putting my thoughts in writing. I’m sad and I’m spent. Can’t put any more effort into writing today. my 750words.com stats for today. I am sad

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Bunch of jackasses standing in a circle

I’ve seen it three times now and I can’t get enough. Becky and I saw it in the theater and we couldn’t wait to take Terri to see it. She loves super heroes much more than I but she didn’t think she’d like it. She left the theater proclaiming it one of her favorite movies of all time - as I had done when I left the first viewing. Billy purchased the Blu-ray for her for Christmas and we watched it last week again. It provides a solid mix of real humor, cheap humor ( but little crude ), and sentimentality. Full of puns and fun dialog. Even in the casting of Vin Diesel, and the promotion of his role, sets the tone for the film - it’s one big joke, and I mean that as a real compliment. Both “plan making” scenes are absolute classics. They combine great performances with perfect timing - you will not be disappointed. All of the performances are solid, but the biggest surprise for me was Dave Bautista. His performance as the metaphorically challenged Drax the Destroyer was flawless. The “nothing goes over my head” scene still makes me laugh out loud when I think about it. The only thing parents should know is that this movie is violent throughout. I know of children younger than six who have seen it, but I can’t imagine my children having seen it at that age. At both theater viewings, we saw young children carried out crying and screaming. Every child has a different tolerance for this, but I have to believe it would scare most children. Otherwise, it’s a marvelous film.

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Fun Friday - Playing Games

We like to play games at our house. I don’t remember exactly when this started, but at some point we started buying one board game for Billy and one for Becky for Christmas every year, and we enjoyed playing the games together on Christmas day. Like most toys you get your kids for Christmas, they would go unused for most of the next year, but every once in a while we hit on one we all really liked. I remember one year we considered not getting them because it seemed like the price on games had jumped dramatically, but we realized that a few hours of family of fun was certainly worth a few dollars. I am very glad we did because we’ve continued this tradition almost every year since. Even as Billy and Becky got older and started to have more expensive gifts, we had Gram and Grandad get the games for them. At some point Becky really started to get into board games and we started spending more time playing as a family. Now it’s a running joke with my brother and sister that they have to buy a new game every time they come to our house because their kids love the games we play when they are here. This year, Becky’s gift from Gram and Grandad was Takenoko. It’s a blast and we’ve played every day since Christmas - most days more than once. Billy got an Xbox One this year and he and I have been playing through The Master Chief Collection on legendary difficulty. I’ve played through in single player on legendary before, but we are having a great time doing it together.

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48 down

One of the most interesting things about life, if you ask me, is that we don’t know how long it will be. Today is my 48th birthday. I know I’ve lived 48 years, but I don’t know how many I have left. The important thing, I guess, is to live it. Happy New Year!

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