Life Principle - Make the Best Decision You Can With What You Know Now

October 18, 2018

Make the best decision you can with what you know now.

My father

If you learn more later, you can make a better decision then.

Me (as a corollary to the above wisdom from my father)

In the world of STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics), the inability to arrive at a decision is known as analysis paralysis. Those of you who don't live in that world may know it more simply as being indecisive. Either way it's a bad thing. It's frustrating to the indecisive one and those around them and at the end of the day it brings more problems than it avoids. Voltaire captured the heart of the matter with his saying "Perfect is the enemy of good". (And then the computer science world reduced it down to "Worse is better".)

Voltaire understood what most indecisive people do not, and that is that if you are trying to decide between two almost equally good options, then it really does not particularly matter which one you select in the long term. If the decision were between an good option and a bad option, there would be no indecision, so we can ignore this scenario. The closer the options are in expected outcome, the more likely most people will be to experience decision making paralysis. Yet, despite this truth, most people will agonize over their decisions, clinging firmly to the belief that they must make a perfect decision or they will have failed.

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School Bus First Week Thoughts

October 4, 2018

Peter and I in a school bus

A quick follow-up to last weeks post about my new job as a School Bus Driver.

I had my first solo route drive last Thursday. My morning route is known as the Blue Route and it is pretty much driving due North out of town, picking up students until I get to my furthest pickup and then heading directly South while picking up a few more and then delivering them to their appropriate schools.

It's not a complicated route, but suitable for the newest driver. I have the route memorized now and am most of the way through getting my timings right. I'm still working on getting my turnarounds perfect and then I'll get to work on learning my students names.

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Big Yellow School Bus

September 28, 2018

Me in a big yellow school bus

I posted this picture on Facebook on Monday and I thought it might be time to update everyone on the life of a freshly licensed school bus driver.

For my non-U.S. readers, this is pretty much exactly what it sounds like, but the "big yellow" part will likely mean nothing to you. School buses are not unusual in other parts of the world, nor in Britain. The biggest difference is that U.S. school buses are bright yellow (well, technically they are Federal standard "National School Bus Glossy Yellow" and there is an interesting YouTube video here if you want more explanation.)

I've tried a number of other approaches to earning a living that will fit well with being a pastor and this seems like a good fit. Perhaps not what most people might expect me to do after working for more than a quarter of a century as a computer programmer, but corporate computer programming has a pretty long list of reasons why I'll never miss it, so I'm happy to be driving a bus. (I'll rant about being a programmer in Corporate America another time.) My priority is pastoring and living and working in the city that I'm called to, so no more driving into Madison every day if I can help it.

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The Acts of the Apostles - Chapter 1

September 16, 2018

I'm writing a book, a commentary on the bible book The Acts of the Apostles and will be putting the content here first so that I can ask for feedback on it. The content will also be gathered together into an e-book, which will eventually be made available for free and after that as a printed book which will be available for a reasonable price.

This follows on from the previously published Introduction.

Chapter 1

1 The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, 2 Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen: 3 To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God:

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Geese at Echo Veterans Memorial Park in Burlington

September 15, 2018

Geese at Echo Veterans Memorial Park in Burlington

Taken with a 4MP Olympus C4040Z.

During the same visit to the park that produced the previous picture, I saw this scene and liked it, so I captured it.

This is perhaps not a classical photographic composition. That said, it's close to abiding by the rule of thirds, there's at least one subtle diagonal line in the picture, the shadows of the trees make interesting patterns and there are baby geese in the center of the frame, but beyond that it's just a picture at the park. But I like it because it represents one of my favorite types of fun. It brings together in one super representation all of the happy memories from my childhood visits to parks: trees, grass, sunshine, aquatic birds (although we generally have more ducks than geese at British parks) and people relaxing or playing off in the distance.

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