Parenting Styles

Radiohead At 37,000 Feet

Listening to Radiohead at 37,000 feet is pretty relaxing.  It keeps me focused and energized.  I need that to get my writing back to where it should be.

This past summer has been pretty relaxing.  Well, except for the unexpected car repairs, wage garnishment for a debt my ex-wife promised to take care of, and promising everything short of my first born and left testicle to the debtors.  OK, so it hasn’t been very relaxing at all, but we are all healthy and our family bonds are strong.

The kids start school this week. I’ll have to miss it since, as you probably gathered from the first sentence above, I’m on a plane which is heading to Boston. I am attending a week training class for work.

I’m really looking forward to it for a couple of reasons.  First is that I get to learn a new Sun/Oracle server platform. I’ve been working with Sun equipment for about 15 years, 4 of those with Sun Microsystems. It will nice to learn about the new systems.

I’m also really looking forward to meeting up with a few friends, both old and new. I grew up in Chelmsford, which is about 30 minutes outside of Boston. Where I’m training in Hudson is only about a 30 minute drive from Chelmsford.

I’m looking forward to seeing an old friend who was our babysitter for years.  She became like a second daughter to us.  She visited us several time after we moved to Omaha.  She’s a mom now and I can’t wait to see her little boy!

A fellow parent here on GP has graciously invited me to dinner and I’m very excited about meeting her. I’ve yet to meet any other GPers in person, so it should be a great experience.

Now The Who is playing Pinball Wizard from their Woodstock gig.  Best version, if you ask me.

My kids have had a good summer.  OL has been working a lot at a local fast food place.  AJ has been working full time unloading trucks on the 2nd shift at Walmart. He has moved into his own place with a roommate.  He’s off the drugs and has really matured. NK has been hanging at his dad’s all summer, playing video games, taking art lessons, and mowing the lawn.

As for my Love and myself, we spend a much time together as we can.  She’s my rock and my safe place, my sounding board, my stability.  According to her, I seem to fill the same roll for her. This is the first time a relationship that I’ve never worried about saying to doing something wrong.

Another good bit of news that will help the nastiness from the second paragraph is that I just got a job offer making a LOT more that I am now.  It will bring me back to what was making almost two years ago before I lost my job.

The job I have now is not bad. I’m a Field Engineer.  I go and fix computer equipment ranging from small servers up to the big mainframes and everything in between.  I get to travel around the Omaha area a lot and something out to bum-fuck Iowa as well.  Still, taking this job meant a very big pay cut, but given that I’d been looking for work for six months and all of our reserves were just about gone, I took what I could get.

Now that the economy has improved and more opportunities have been presenting themselves.  I’m a UNIX/Linus Systems Administrator by trade and my new job is doing exactly that.  I also have extensive Solaris experience as well as a fair knowledge of AIX.  It’s a fairly rare and much sought after skill set and it seems to be paying off.

All of this bodes well for me and my family.



Well, my week of training is over. It was a good class and what I’ve learned will be very useful in my career. I’m currently at Logan Airport in Boston waiting for my flight to Atlanta and thence to Omaha.

Unfortunately, I didn’t get to meet with any friends.  The rental car wasn’t in my name and the coworker who did sign for it wasn’t too keen on my driving it.  I guess I can’t blame him.

Still, it was wonderful to see the beautiful green hills, the gorgeous, tree lined lakes, and the quaint and stately colonial houses and buildings.  I also got to eat the best mushroom cheese steak in the world.  The hell with Philly, no place makes them better than New England.

Featured image by Matt J Newman


Jay is a dad, husband, and pet lover. He has a degree in Theater Arts and works as a Unix systems administrator, mainly because he has a degree in Theater Arts. He used to be a single dad, but now he is married to the perfect woman. He has two teenagers, a daughter, and a step-son. He also has an adult son. He shares his home with his wife, kids, an Australian Shepherd, and a bevy of adorable chihuahuas. He is a skeptic and humanist and tries to contribute to spreading rationality by writing about skeptical topics. You can find samples of his writing on his personal blog at Freethinking For Dummies, the JREF blog, and in Skeptical Inquirer magazine.

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  1. “I’ve yet to meet any other GPers in person”

    Technically, this isn’t true. I was going through my stack of business cards a while ago, and I discovered that I had one of yours. I guess we met at Skepticon one year, though I don’t remember which year, and I don’t remember why you gave me a card.

    So, neither of us actually remember meeting before we joined GP, but we have “met”. 😉

    1. Lance, wow! This is so cool to find out! Yes, it was Skepticon IV I believe. I had business cards as I was trying to direct traffic to my Free Thinking For Dummies blog. I was hoping to build a career as a writer (still am). I think it is awesome that you have one of my business cards, since I’m pretty sure I don’t have any anymore!

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