The world is beautiful early in the morning. I have a picture to prove it but Typepad doesn't want to let me post it today. Doh!
In the past week of variously sick children and both parents with inflexible schedules, I've been thinking about how deep a bench a family ought to have. It used to be that we had... hmm... no bench? I mean, there was me. But I was on the field. On the other hand, it was ok because there was pretty much nothing short of hospitalization or death that would have taken me off the field and that would have been an extraordinary crisis and odds are Mr. Right would have been able to step in until things settled out.
Now, we actually have a bench. There's preschool and the regular babysitter and a few ad hoc babysitters. I'm off the field a chunk of the time and they're covering for me and that's fine. Except because they're not Mom, plenty of things way short of hospitalization or death can take them off the field. Planned holidays, unplanned sickness of my children (no preschool), abnormal hours (possibly no regular babysitter for odd hours, no back-up babysitter available during school hours, no preschool during early-morning random required meeting hours)... and BAM! no bench. And if there's no one on the field and there's no bench...
I wonder if it's a bad idea for someone who never ever watches sports to try to explain her life with a sports analogy?
So, um... I'm working on making peace with the idea that I will probably get through grad school OK but only by always trying to be ahead of the game and never actually being ahead of the game for more than an instant.
Whiny? Actually, I'm really enjoying grad school. And even though I feel a little guilty leaving my sick baby with someone else while I go and listen to a lecture about simulating queue systems, mostly I'm pretty happy to have someone I trust to take care of my sick baby while I listen to a lecture about simulating queue systems.
Another analogy! Did you know that if you have a server and the queue is being added to exactly as fast as the server is able to process a thing in the queue, you have an unstable system? You'd kind of think that things would only be disasterous if the queue was being added to a bit faster than the server could work, but there's math that says equal rates is just as bad. The server needs some non-busy time or... foobar. See? Analogy.
Next time I get some non-busy time, I'm going to try to remember to watch the rest of this speech Inventing on Principle by Bret Victor (Typepad's link thingy seems as broken as the pictures and I don't want to bother with the html today, so... http://vimeo.com/36579366). Just one of the cool things I've found in my few weeks of twitter-watching. (That particular one thanks to Daniel Jalkut -> http://www.red-sweater.com/blog/.)
The orange hearts on Tuesday were, in fact, cheese. :)
That's it. What I've got. Now to go see if re-learning Perl to solve my what-I-think-is-probably-Perl-appropriate problem would be more time-efficient than banging said probably-Perl-appropriate problem into C...