Stream-of-consciousness: retirement, writing, food truck, AI

Stream-of-consciousness blogging. I have a committed audience of one. (Hi, Son!)

I retired April 1st (no kidding). I was not adjusting to it very well. Friday I twittered that I was coming out of retirement to write a book. I have two working titles: Internet Wisdom, First Edition, and Sparky’s Booklet. I am not even sure what it’s about, yet. I started writing it in my commonplace book (c-book for short) a little bit at a time, out of order. I wrote “Begin my book” in my c-book on October 17, 2021. (That was 1183 days after I started gathering my thoughts in my c-book, by the way. I knew it was going to take a while to come together, not that the only reason I keep a c-book is to write books.)

I like to say that the first draft of my book is already written. All the words are in my c-book. Problem is, the words are not in the right order. And I don’t think the first draft is salable. Meanwhile, I blog.

I am writing this sitting inside Pikes Peak Brewing Company (PPBC). They have good fast Wi-Fi, and I am in the corner, an elbow away from my laptop’s power plug. As soon as I got here I ordered a dark meat chicken wrap from Tossed Food Truck. The band was on their final break. They started up and played until 4pm. I bought a Rocky Mountain root beer for $4 “plus change.” The “change” includes a brewer’s fee, which I am happy to pay. I ate my wrap. It was delicious! I had a nice chat with the owner, Morgan.

Before PPBC I was at Serranos, where I had the strangest “conversation” of my life. To protect the identities of my friends, I’ll call them Alex and Bob. Both are men.

Take a trip back in time with me. I join them. Bob reacts like an aggressive stallion. He doesn’t greet me. The exact words aren’t important. The message to me is, “You are intruding on my time with Alex.” He doesn’t tell me to leave, though, and I decide to stay as the third wheel. I am literally eavesdropping on their convo, and they are both aware of it! Alex is playing along with Bob. They are both talking about me, knowing I am here, and neither is inviting me to speak. So I remain silent. I’m learning things about both of them that they don’t talk to me about: their opinions on transgenderism, religion, etc. I learn that when Alex was growing up (some decades ago, but continuing after Vatican II), Catholic churches published the giving of every congregant. They published the attendance at activities such as pro-life rallies. These reports (confessionals?) were mailed to parishioners every month. As a Christian, I get it. I can see, theologically, how such transparency might help disciples grow spirtually. But that’s just not cool to do in America. Alex doesn’t know if the church still does that. But still. Wow.

Strange convo, right? It took me time to get used to the situation. I made mistakes, but Bob was consistent with his feedback. His message: “You may stay, but do not join the convo. This is our time to talk one on one.” At one point a laugh slipped out of me, and Bob mocked me. That worked. I didn’t make another mistake after that.

One final thing I want to mention today: AI. Generative Pre-trained Transformers. I like Brave Leo, built into the browser. This post’s image is a screenshot of the food truck’s home page and a convo I had with Leo about it.

Tim Chambers @tbc