Thoughts before Game of Thrones: Season 8

Unless you have been living under a mountain of dragonglass, you likely know that Game of Thrones is returning this weekend. I can hardly believe that it has been almost two years since we have had a new episode, but I am very ready to see how this goes.

Of course, spoiler alert for everything ahead. I will also disclaim that as a very average fan, my ideas are at best common or at worst plagiarized from others without citation.

Continue reading “Thoughts before Game of Thrones: Season 8”

The Evolution of My Notes

I have written a lot about my TODO list. I rely heavily on my TODO list because my brain is bad at remembering to do things, but digital lists synced to the cloud and linked to periodic reminders are much more reliable. However, I don’t only use digital systems to remember to do things: I also use them to remember important facts and my ideas. That is why I have an extensive notetaking system that has evolved over the years.

Continue reading “The Evolution of My Notes”

GM Tip: 5 Adventure Structures for GMs

Let me describe how adventure preparation usually goes for me.

Immediately after the last session, I have seemingly endless ideas of how the next adventure could go. Over the next week, I keep having great ideas while I’m eating breakfast, biking, showering, and everywhere else in life. Then, it is night before the next session, and I sit down to write my prep.

And then I’m stuck. I stare at a blank screen, and then realize I have been reading reddit for a half-hour and still haven’t figured anything out.

GMs can also have writer’s block, and every writer has a trick for how they get over it. My trick is to start with an adventure structure.

Continue reading “GM Tip: 5 Adventure Structures for GMs”

Getting Off Gmail

A few weeks ago, TechCrunch published stories about how Facebook and Google used unauthorized iOS apps to gather data about phone usage from external users in ways that the users likely didn’t understand. In light of these stories, I wondered how feasible it was to switch away from Google services to other platforms.

Continue reading “Getting Off Gmail”

My Manager README

Last May, I read about writing a Manager README and thought it was brilliant. It took the implicit and difficult task of learning how to work with someone and made it explicit. It also was a great opportunity to reflect on my own processes and compare with how others work.

So, I took a few notes off the bat and then promptly backlogged it to be completed later.

And now, about nine months later, I finished the first version of my Personal README. It very much reads as a Manager README, but being a manager is a narrow part of my life, so I imagine this document evolving to be a more general way of helping others deal with me.

It’s now linked as a Page in the site navigation, but the first version is also reproduced below.

Continue reading “My Manager README”

A Perfectly Useless Amount of Chinese

Like many other Asian Americans, I went to see Crazy Rich Asians. And like many others, I had some typical takeaways like wanting to make dumplings with my family and . However, I also had one realization that I think is somewhat unusual.

Continue reading “A Perfectly Useless Amount of Chinese”

Memories of my Yeye

(Author’s Note: I wrote the first version of this post on the plane back from Toronto on December 20th after my grandfather’s funeral, so the dates are relative to that. I told myself that I had other year-end posts to write, but I think I was just trying to avoid this one.)

I didn’t talk to Yeye (my paternal grandfather) much over the past twenty years. He knew probably less than twenty words of English, and I never learned a useful amount of Cantonese. When my family moved down to Houston, I stopped going to Chinese school, and we only saw him on the occasional vacation.

Continue reading “Memories of my Yeye”

2019 New Year’s Goals: Slowing Down

Although I’m posting my 2019 goals announcement after my 2018 goals review, I actually ended up doing them out of order. By the beginning of December, I was already thinking ahead to my 2019 goals without having looked back on 2018. Of course, I ended up refining the goals and tweaking the presentation, but I’m sticking with the big ideas that I already had.

And so my goal setting process perfectly illustrates why I have a theme for 2019 to slow down. My parents could tell you that I have always been hasty about doing things. I’m the most impulsive amongst my siblings, and I rush from one thing to another as quickly as possible. It makes me sloppy and careless.

Continue reading “2019 New Year’s Goals: Slowing Down”