If you like getting the runaround, you can keep getting the runaround

Most Americans ought to be familiar with the recurring gag in the comic strip Peanuts in which every year Lucy offers to hold the football so that Charlie Brown can kick it. Each year, Charlie Brown complains that Lucy never acts in good faith and that she always pulls the ball away at the last minute, leaving poor Charlie Brown flat on his back after a flubbed kick attempt. Lucy invariably comes up with a compelling argument why Charlie Brown should trust her this time and Charlie Brown sees her logic and gives it a try. Predictably, he always winds up on his back.

Now and then, step outside social media's walls

RSS reader instead of Facebook

I don’t usually make New Year’s Resolutions for a variety of reasons. For more on the subject, see Resolution Evolution by Jason McClain. However, this year I have a somewhat different tack. I’m committing myself not to a set of specific pass/fail tasks (make it to the gym every day) but to a more general goal: reduce my use of social media sites as my conduit to blogs.

Two thousand fourteen

I’m not sad to say goodbye to 2013. There were some accomplishments, but also many difficulties that I would rather not have to revisit. Though many of the difficulties won’t magically disappear with the turning of a calendar’s page, the arrival of the new year nevertheless does seem to come with a sense that there could be a fresh start, that perhaps some of the previous year’s failures and disasters can be left behind.

Reasonable people

There are no topics about which reasonable people cannot find disagreement. In the end one may be right and the other wrong, but this does not make either unreasonable.

Of course, not all disagreements are reasonable. However, if you find yourself thinking someone else is unreasonable because they don’t agree with you, the other person might not be the unreasonable one in the conversation.

Chart: minimum wage in cost-of-living-adjusted dollars

There has been a lot of talk lately about the minimum wage and how it ought to be raised. It has been claimed that minimum wage workers are making less now than ever and that the nation is in a critical race to the bottom where workers on the low end of the spectrum are getting squeezed harder and harder.

This raises the question of the historical minimum wage in the United States. Is it really lower now than it ever has been? Did America once have a minimum wage that elevated workers from poverty?

Worlds colliding

This thing keeps taking me in unexpected directions. What I thought had gone sideways a couple days ago has gone farther sideways.

Yesterday I didn’t get as much writing done and I didn’t think I’d get much done today because I had a lot of other work to do. But I carved out some time in the morning and then got on a roll in the late evening. I finished a 3500 word chapter (2,824 of which were written in the past 24 hours) that had numerous challenges.

Worlds apart

Some intense writing today. I wanted to make up for the time lost yesterday in the Wal-Mart parking lot. I hoped I might push my total to 10,000 words today, but didn’t get there and at this point I’m exhausted. I need to set it down for the night. I wrote 2,825 words today which is the most I’ve written in one day since I started keeping track on Friday, and I wrote material that wasn’t previously on the outline so that’s a really satisfactory day.

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