Charles Pillsbury III

Geek. Dad. Writer?

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Hobbies and Interests and such

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I follow about 50-75 RSS feeds and a couple dozen podcasts on a regular basis, and they cover many, but not all, of my interests. I’ll try and compose a list of the sites for these feeds in the coming weeks for those of you interested, but I thought I’d start off with a few words on the topics.

Having moved from a job where I had what could only be described as “a copious amount of free time” available to work on other projects to one where “free time” is no longer in my vocabulary has presented me with a challenge to still Get the Things Done that I need to do make sure I’ve still GOT the job and can pay the bills, while also accomplishing the things I want to get done for side projects and such.  I’ve probably spent as much time figuring out how to be more productive as I’ve saved by being more productive, but it’s a work in progress.  I particularly enjoy 43 Folders (and the big Kahuna over there, Merlin Mann, is somebody who’s work I enjoy enough to hunt him out in other venues like MacBreak Weekly and his The Merlin Show), but I also follow a few other GTD/Productivity blogs (my second favorite is Zen Habits probably).  I can’t say I’m a rigid GTD practitioner, but I’m working on my own personalized system based on the concept.

I’ve always BEEN a bit of a science buff, but have lately really picked it back up with my own readings of Stephen Hawking and watching Carl Sagan’s Cosmos and such.  I won’t get into too much of this here, but I’m reading up on all those things that I missed out on by dropping out of college and not paying as close of attention in high-school as I should have (FYI: I finished high school in 3 years of active school, but took both Biology and Physics in one year and that happened to be the year I wasn’t the best student due to having my first girlfriend (and the only one who didn’t become my wife) and subsequently getting dumped by her).  I get a lot of my info on the latest science and such from BBC News, as well as the Scientific American 60 second Science podcast, and the podcast for RadioLab’s science show from NPR.

I’m not sure these are naturally related topics, but somehow they end up being merged in my readings (I recommend the Dilbert Blog to everybody).  I’m a libertarian (John Stossel’s columns are among my favorites) on almost every subject, but I try and read a variety of political sources to get multiple sides to the story.  I’m also loving the NPR Intelligence Squared debates on various political subjects lately (in podcast form).

I read a lot of web design theory, programming theory, web programming theory, etc. I read humor related to these, I read serious items related to these. Zeldman is one of my favorites, but I’ll read Gruber’s Daring Fireball as well (though this could easily be lumped into the Mac section).  I listen to MacBreak Weekly and TWiT

I’m a geek, unix geek really, but have been converted to a Mac head in recent years thanks to the Unix underpinnings of OS X and what is really just a great OS. So I read mac punditry, and mac reviews, and use mac applications, and even though I’m a programmer in my day job, I haven’t YET delved into the realm of Mac programming… but I do read quite a few Mac blogs (The Unofficial Apple Weblog is probably my favorite).

I of course frequent my own sites and, but I also keep track of Jamie Ford’s excellent author blog, and a few other random author blogs, plus the literary info I get from Boing Boing.  I listen to Mur Lafferty’s I Should Be Writing religiously (and like most religion, I’m not very good at practicing what the preacher tells me, even if I show up every week for the sermon).

I love baseball. I’m not a sports fan (hate football, don’t care for basketball anymore, only vaguely find hockey or soccer interesting), but I love baseball. I’m some mix of historical purist, not-quite-but-almost stat-head, and obsessed local fan. I grew up in the south, and all of the formative years were in the Atlanta area, so I’m a big Braves fan.  My favorite is Rowland’s Office, but I also enjoy the Braves Blog as well.  I’m optimistic about 2008, I don’t think we’re going into anything as the favorite right now, but I think we’ve got a competitive team and aren’t major underdogs to anybody in our division just yet (being an NL team I guess we’re underdogs even if we make it to the World Series, but that’s another article I guess).


I love the Unclutterer blog (which is vaguely related to 43 folders, Zen Habits, and Lifehacker, but a different set of “ideals” govern them) and I’ve been enjoying the “It’s All Too Much” book that seems to follow the same philosophy.

I’m a big fan of the Re-Imagineering blog, which is a group of Pixar and Disney employees talking about the theme parks in a very theoretical and yet practical way.  I find the subject fascinating, and as a lifelong Muppet fan I listen to the podcast as well.  I’m not sure why I’m so drawn to the works of Walt Disney and Jim Henson, but I love what both men did in the realm of entertainment and think there’s probably something there for me to learn as a writer and creative entrepreneur.

There are 4 “internet personalities” that I will follow in whatever endeavor they try next.
A) Mur Lafferty.  Mur is a geeky lady with her fair share of writing talent. I enjoy her writing podcast “I Should Be Writing”, I’ve enjoyed her Geek Fu Action Grip essays and the spin-off Geek Fu Morning Show. I enjoyed her first serialized podiobooks Heaven and Hell, and I’m enjoying her podiobook novel Playing for Keeps.
B) Merlin Mann. Merlin is a few years older than I, and much cooler, but somebody with a few things in common (punk rock/indie music, IT nerdy, ADD, probably more) and somebody I find incredibly entertaining (he’s like what I’d like to imagine I’d be if I had my history and interests with my friend Georg’s talent… if only I had that Talent stuff I keep hearing about I’d be SET).  I enjoy the way he thinks about technology and “1st world problems”.  I almost gave up MacBreak Weekly while he was on hiatus having a kid because he really brought a (how’s this for a trite statement) “fresh perspective” to the group.
C) Leo Laporte: I watched WAY too much TechTV once I finally got the channel and then they took it away and I’ve been reduced to TWiT for all my Leo fixes. I should probably take him off this list just because I don’t have enough hours in my day to follow all of his projects, but since he gets 3-5 hours of my week thanks to Jumping Monkeys, TWiT, and MacBreak Weekly I figure he counts.
D) ZeFrank: WOW do I miss “The Show” and I’m reminded how incredibly good it was every time a “best of” selection pops up in iTunes (or any time he throws in a new tidbit during the writer’s strike).  I’m not even sure what he’s working on right now, but he’s another one of those guys who make it easy to think “that’s what I wish I was doing” and “i could do this… if I had any talent”.


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December 28th, 2007 at 10:34 pm

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