Friday, December 19, 2008


[To blog: I edited this a bit before sending it on. It's a reply to an old, old friend who asked me for a summary of my life since leaving Olympia.]


It's nice to hear from you. Yes, in fact, I did move to Hawaii. Senior year, I think, which was kind of irritating actually. I'm more mellow about it now, but there were a couple of things that drove me nuts. One is that--well, you don't know this, but I have a lot of patriotic sentiment running in my veins, and they're kind of anti-American over there. (I know, it doesn't make any sense, they *are* American. But there you have it.) So that kind of got under my skin. The other thing was that I thought the girls in Washington were cuter. :) Shallow, I know, but I was pretty attached to our Olympia girls, especially the ones in my ward at church, and I resented being yanked away. Anyway, I was only there for nine or ten months and then I left for college (BYU), served my mission in the Philippines ('99 to '01), and came back to BYU for my Bachelors'. I was originally planning on going into genetic engineering, but it rapidly became clear to me that the technology wasn't yet as good as I had thought it was, and that we were a long ways away from being able to do the interesting stuff. (It really bugged me that we couldn't even predict what a protein would look like from knowing its codon sequence--we knew the amino acids, but we couldn't predict which way it would fold. I understand there have been some advances made since then.) Anyway, I had taken some computer programming classes at the same time just out of general interest, and eventually I decided that if I couldn't build nanomachines that I'd build software: a computer programmer is someone who is so lazy that he will spend three days writing himself a program to save ten minutes. :) Because then, hopefully, you never have to do that ten-minute job ever again, and neither does anyone else in the world.

Anyway, I finished in 2005, and stayed on to take some grad classes. Eventually I decided that I wasn't smart enough for grad school, or at least my research wasn't going anywhere, and so in 2007 I dropped out to work for, yes, Microsoft. Good guess. :) I work on a team that makes tools for developers, with a particular focus on networking applications. You probably know that programs and web sites are usually not written from scratch; there are a lot of sort of pre-assembled pieces that perform common tasks and get re-used between e.g. Gmail, ebay, and blogspot (to pick three random examples). I help build some of those common pieces that come for free with Windows. Anyway, enough geekiness from me today.

Let's see, what else do I owe you a response on? A day in the life:

Depending upon how cold it is outside and whether I'm having good habits that week, I get up at 5 a.m. or so and go running along my regular route a little bit north of my apartment complex, through a residential neighborhood. I get back by 5:30 or 6:00, depending upon whether I get lazy and cut in short, and... you know, somehow time vanishes into gaps in the morning. I'm not sure where it goes. I shower and eat and read my scriptures and check my email and somehow I never get to work before 8:00 at the earliest, although of course that's still an hour or two hours before the building actually starts to fill up. I usually leave work between 5:30 and 7:00 p.m., and if it's a Monday night I go to Family Night (I'm single, so of course I can't have *real* Family Night with my non-existent wife and kids, so my singles' ward at church gets together instead to have a lesson and play games and have treats--one that I really liked was where we did human foosball in the gym). On Tuesday I usually go to Institute of Religion class (like seminary, but for adults). Wednesdays I sometimes go see a movie or a play, but I often try to go to the temple and help with some ordinances. (You know I'm technically a priest, right? Actually you probably didn't.) Thursday and Friday are kind of open-ended. I guess I usually end up reading on those nights or playing games, or going out with girls. (Again, that depends on how social I'm feeling.) Saturday is weekend tasks like shopping, laundry, etc., and Sunday is church and rest time, and maybe write some letters and stuff. That's pretty much what my weeks look like, I think.
[Remarks of merely personal relevance deleted]


"The presentation or 'gift' of the Holy Ghost simply confers upon a man the right to receive at any time, when he is worthy of it and desires it, the power and light of truth of the Holy Ghost, although he may often be left to his own spirit and judgment." --Joseph F. Smith (manual, p. 69)

"Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me."

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