Jason Michael dot com

You don't owe me anything.

How Can a Skeptic Deal With Death?

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I am not currently dealing with any grief, I have not recently lost anyone close to me. My dad died 2 years ago last month, and I guess that still stings a bit. But I have been thinking a bit lately about how skeptics can deal with the loss of a loved one without the comfortable illusions of the Bosom of Abraham or the afterlife, etc. Musing on this one day, and completely out of the blue, I wondered, do I think that Harry Potter is dead? Obviously, Hary Potter never existed in any real sense, however I personally know a lot of details about his life because I have read stories about him and I enjoyed those stories. I think fondly about Harry Potter, and I remember him in a positive way and perhaps I always will. His essence is locked in my mind in a quiet place. Memories of Harry Potter can still bring a smile to my face.

AWSome Lambda!

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I have been working in DevOps the past year, even if my blog has given no indication that I’ve been doing anything at all. Lately, I’ve been working on building a monitoring system for a coporate IT wad of crap (mostly Microsoft bullshit), where you can’t get TCP ingress or egress without a court order, so you gotta be creative. Essentially the system is a client-server architecture where (normally) a client sits on a server, runs a pre-defined list of checks on the server (like disc space checks or memory checks), and reports back to the server via a TCP connection (https POST). But since we can’t get the client visibility to the server in a different network, we need some way of communicating. These servers are managed by HPE, and let me tell you, HPE has devolved a lot since Hewlett and Packard were silly-walking around silicon valley with their cloth shirts with dark ties and slacks and matching pocket protectors and slide rules.

Secret to Life

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So, yeah. It’s Christmas Time and I’m thinking deep thoughts. I’m waking up early in the morning, sneaking into my kids rooms, peeking at them asleep in bed, covers pulled up to the chin revealing their little feet. I’m thinking about joy, what it takes to have more of it in this world. Only a month ago, terrorists armed with bombs and assault rifles attacked Paris, killing hundreds. Paris! Imagine it: a city bursting with so much love it even has a bridge covered with padlocks symbolizing couples’ devotion. A couple of weeks ago, similarly minded folks tried to do the same thing in San Bernadino. Seems like the whole world’s gone crazy. But my kid’s little cold feet remind me there is always another story playing. And the tree is surrounded by many presents, wrapped up in pretty paper with bright ribbons and bows.

Something to Look At

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After the fold, a link to a Youtube channel where a middle-aged man who used to be a child star sits around and plays board games. If you’ve been shopping for games, but you don’t know what games are fun to play before you buy them, this is a great resource. It’s also entertaining.

1000 Subscribers

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My daughter Kate is insisting on going to Vidcon AS SOON AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE. I told her to figure out how to go. Where is it? Will we need airfare, hotel, car rental? If so, whip up a spreadsheet of the entire event.