I have not delved into the AI stuff much at all. A few months ago I played with an AI art generator until my free tries ran out. I have not used any of the others. When I was doing the art thing I very much wonder what online resources had been evaluated and remixed to create the images produced. I have to think they came from somewhere. Or maybe “everywhere”?

The slurping-in of people’s creative output by these systems is kind of troubling. Even being as ignorant of this stuff as I am, I have to say my immediate reaction is to hate it.

I have stopped posting video to Youtube. I am considering making all my Vimeo videos “unlisted” or “private” from here on out. I’m even thinking about making all my stuff here on CL require a log-in to view, or something like that. I realize this is a meaningless gesture given the nature of this issue, but really it is only a “gesture.” I just really don’t want to feed this beast even my own little collection of thoughts, images, and sounds.

Doing the unthinkable

Well, not really unthinkable. I’ve thought if it many times, and done it many times.

I am getting rid of most of my books. In fact, I just did it. Over the weekend I boxed up 90% of my books, and today at work I donated them to the library, which will sell them either in the book sale or via a vendor who sells our nonfiction donations for a good price and splits the money with the Friends of the library (so it eventually benefits the library, just like the in-building book sale does).

I had a lot of books sitting there, taking up space in my office, doing nothing. I kept a few books about skateboarding. I’m a skateboarder. They are inspiring to me and to some extent represent who I am. I’m not the other things.

It feels good to be rid of them.


I’m sitting out on my patio this morning. Drinking coffee. It is good. On the left side of my body the sun is hitting me and I’m warm. On the other side of my body the wind is hitting me and I’m cool. The breeze smells fresh. An airplane just flew overhead. There’s a bird singing. The buzz from my tinnitus is less noticeable than usual. Inside the house my wife is getting our puppy ready to go to his manners class. This morning for the first time when he came out of his crate he jumped up on the bed to snuggle with me. He clacked his front teeth in a sassy greeting. Later today, we’re going to see my nephew play in a college baseball game.

But right now I’m just sitting quietly on the patio, soaking it all in. It is good to be alive.

The Devil is in the Details

So here is the kind of thing I’m working on — the details.

This move is pretty simple. A backside 180 slide into a 720 spin, into two end-overs.

Here’s the thing that I’m working to get better. The idea is do use this to reverse the direction of travel. In this case, I’m moving away from the camera, and I want end up coming back to it. The two end-overs at the end of the sequence are critical, because they generate speed to return the way I came.

The problem? I tend to over-rotate the 720 spin. I should finish it pointed right back at the camera. That way I would be doing a FULL 180 end-over off the nose into a second end-over, which would generate a lot of speed and flow. By over-rotating the 720, I reduce the degrees of pivot in that first end-over, thereby reducing the speed generated.

Yes, I’m out of practice. My goal with all this, as with all my moves, is for this to be one continuous flowing motion that keeps speed throughout.

Video is really a helpful tool.

Some of you might find it amusing yet unsurprising to find out that when I do stuff like this I pick a seam in the concrete and pretend it is the top of a banked wall. So when I do this trick, for example, I’m pretending it is a banked wall that I go up and then come down. I do that a lot in freestyle, actually.

When I do this trick on a bank, of course, gravity allows me to change direction without thinking about it. Also, on a bank I don’t fakie carve into the 720 much if at all, so the exact 720 is easier to do.