Ben Crowder / Blog

Things on my mind #3

  • Father’s Day was sad, as expected.
  • At least once a week I wonder who in my immediate or extended family will be the next to die, and when. I hope I’m not taking for granted whatever fleeting and finite time I have left with them.
  • I miss being able to do dishes and yard work: something I never thought I’d say, back before my back got bad.
  • The Great Vowel Shift — what phonological changes in English are underway now, and will I even be able to notice them? (Also want to acknowledge that there’s already such diversity in accents in English across the world, which seems to mean that any shift would probably be more local than global.) And are other languages experiencing phonological shifts right now?
  • Stemming from my WWII reading: I’ve been wondering what the world would be like now if nobody had ever been murdered, and if infant mortality was unheard of. What lost inventions and works of art would we have? I suspect that most of the inventions eventually get invented by someone else in this timeline, but the works of art seem forever lost.
  • Do people named Tod think about death more? (Yes, yes, it’s effectively a German dad joke, but also a real question.) (Ben means “son of” in at least some Semitic languages, but I almost never think about that, so I guess I have a likely answer.)
  • The Apple Vision Pro seems like it might open up ways for me to do my day job (software engineering) with less back and neck pain. But it’s not something I’d want to use around other people, because of the isolating factor. (Also: wow, expensive.)
  • Loved Across the Spider-Verse. I wish every comics book movie was in this style. Also really enjoyed Flamin’ Hot and American Born Chinese.
  • I love Procreate’s sharpen filter.
  • There’s so, so, so much I don’t know. I need to spend more time learning and studying.
  • Why does the US–Mexico border between Los Algodones and Colonial Migel Aleman (the southwest part of Arizona) sort of follow the Colorado River but also not? Or is the Google Maps border wrong?
  • Ebooks are great, but there’s something special about libraries as a place where bookish people go.
  • I’m slowly coming to terms with the likelihood that I’m only ever going to be a digital artist (as opposed to doing, say, acrylics or oils, and producing originals), mostly because of my back but also partly because I feel more drawn to digital.
  • Inkscape’s live path effects (like tiling) are cool. I need to learn to use Inkscape better. Wish the UI weren’t so clunky.
  • I’ve wanted to start using web components but the JavaScript dependency has been less attractive, so I’m looking forward to declarative custom elements.
  • Lately, to make progress on stalled projects, I’ve been using a five-minute productivity hack — where I set a timer for five minutes and work on the project until the timer goes off. It continually surprises me how much I can get done in such a small amount of time.