Archive for September, 2010

Bullet Points

29 Sep 2010 Leave a comment

Don’t feel like spending a lot of time on this post, but don’t want to miss a day, so here’s some random thoughts:

  • Great day to be a Red’s fan
  • Giovanni’s Pizza in San Diego is awesome
  • I’m reading a book called Sin Boldly
  • Said book is amazing (go read it now)
  • Still not adjusted to Pacific time
  • Work is seriously busy, but that’s a good thing

Have a great night y’all!

Categories: General

Just Briefly

27 Sep 2010 Leave a comment

Not sure what it is with me and sports dreams, but two nights ago I dreamed I was playing hoops with none other than Michael Jordan.

My secret? Let him do all the dunking.

Speaking of dreaming, I’m pooped. This west coast thing has its perks, but Pacific time is not one of them.

Categories: Dreams

Double Feature

24 Sep 2010 Leave a comment

I remember just a brief bit of dream from last night’s slumber. I was watching the Indianapolis Colts play football (can’t remember who they were playing, opposing jerseys were white, so it might have been the Patriots). Peyton faced fourth and one, and they were going for it. He dropped back to pass, way further back than normal quarterbacks do, and fired a pass just as he was absolutely clobbered. The pass flew right into the hands of a defender, who intercepted it, but then stood there and did nothing until being tackled.

If I were an NFL star, I'd want to be just like Peyton

The pass was replayed several times during the dream, always from different angles, including a pretty cool one where I was watching through the eyes of the guy who intercepted the ball. Finally they showed a replay of the hit of Peyton, but strangely, when he got back up, he was wearing number 14 instead of his usual 18 (which, even in the dream state, I immediately recognized as being wrong). I couldn’t figure out if maybe it hadn’t actually been Peyton on the field, or if he’d switched numbers, or what.

On a completely unrelated note, I’ll wrap things up with a quotation from The Five Dysfunctions Of A Team that I found myself surprised to agree with.

Consensus is horrible. If everyone really agrees on something and consensus comes about quickly and naturally, well that’s terrific. But that isn’t how it usually works, and so consensus becomes an attempt to please everyone, which usually turns into displeasing everyone equally.

Been there, done that. How about you?

Categories: Books, Dreams, Quotations

Night At The Movies

23 Sep 2010 Leave a comment

Have you ever had mini-dreams, little snippets of thoughts that float through your mind as you drift in and out of consciousness? I had a few of those last night this morning, along with one somewhat longer dream.

The latter consisted of me and an anonymous man (tall, dark-skinned, smooth features) at a movie theater. His face didn’t map to someone I know in real life, but I know that in my dream he was a friend. I don’t remember what we were watching, but as we were walking out after the show, we got stopped by a woman who was trying to force her way back in because she left her Xbox inside. Why a person would take an Xbox to a theater I have no idea. Anyways, I turned and saw it sitting in the very back corner seat, so I picked it up and handed it to her, then proceeded to the lobby.

In the lobby my friend walked on ahead and out the door (apparently I was walking slowly, as one often does in dreams), when a kid came up behind me and asked if I kept my money in my wallet. I said yes, quickly verifying that my wallet was still in my back pocket, as I suspected the kid was a thief. I remember my wallet being safely tucked away, and things ended at that point.

My mini-dreams came in little bursts during “snooze time” (5:55 to around 6:15am). In one I recall nothing more than walking through a set of glass doors. In another I was taking Olivia into a public bathroom. I think I had more but I don’t remember them.

As always I read the above and wonder what it all means, if anything. I’m particularly confused about the Xbox thing, since I don’t own one and haven’t played one in ages. In fact, I’ve never owned a single video game console, which is surprising consider how much I love computer games.

Categories: Dreams

The Five Dysfunctions Of A Team (Part 3)

22 Sep 2010 Leave a comment

No cool dreams last night, unfortunately, so back to the quotations.

Every team needs constant work, because without it, even the best ones deviate toward dysfunction.

That’s sort of like a second law of thermodynamics for human relationships, and it’s just as immutably true.

Two years of behavioral reinforcement around politics is a tough thing to break, and one lecture, no matter how compelling, is not going to do it.

I’ve been in situations where someone (i.e. me) thought a single email / phone call / meeting would fix a systemic problem. It just isn’t that easy; real work is involved (see earlier quote).

A decision is better than no decision.

I’d much rather someone have the courage to choose a path that turns out to be wrong than to be stuck in limbo at the fork indefinitely. Few decisions in life are so terribly permanent that a wrong choice dooms you forever, so just do it, I say.

Categories: Books, Quotations

Dream Within A Dream

21 Sep 2010 Leave a comment

Today I’m going to talk about my fantasy football team. I’m not sure why I get so worked up about it, given that at an intellectual level I understand it’s mere threads of strategy woven into a heavy tapestry of luck. But still I obsess over lineup decisions (this week’s was a back and forth about which running backs to start, and I chose poorly). And come game day I’m watching my score constantly. It’s all kind of embarrassing, really.

So last night I was down 7 points with only player left to play (49ers tight end Vernon Davis, just in case you cared). When I went to bed (10:15pm because I’m old) he’d closed the gap to two points, and I was so anxious to see how things would turn out that I actually considered setting an alarm for 1am so I could wake up and check the final score.

I wasn’t crazy enough to actually do it in “real life”, but the thought (plus the chicken fingers I ate at 9:30 while watching The Event) kicked off a bizarre sequence of embedded dreams ala Inception where I woke up, checked the score, was happy/sad/confused about it, and then woke up again and repeated.

Your movie confused me too, but at least you've got Ellen

I can remember at least 4 distinct layers (5 if you count reality):

  • Upon first “waking” I fired up my browser to find I had lost by a gob of points, but somehow my opponent had figured out have to have 3 quarterbacks, 6 running backs, and a whole page worth of receivers all in the game at once. I was really confused about that. It makes sense that the deepest dream would be the strangest, doesn’t it?
  • I then woke up to a “tie” game, but since our league commissioner disallowed ties, the game was decided by fewest number of punts. That makes no sense since fantasy teams don’t have punters, but in this world apparently they do. My punter had more punts, which was considered a negative, so I lost. I recall being pretty upset by this result.
  • Thankfully, I woke from that nightmare and checked my score again to see that my buddy Vernon had ripped off a huge 21 point effort and I had won the fantasy game with ease. I was a happy camper.
  • Alas, shortly after that I woke again to find that actually he’d stalled out at five points and thus I’d lost by two. Bummer. But no worries, it was just a dream.
  • Finally I awoke to real life (or did I?) around 6am, grabbed my phone from underneath the bed (where I keep it at night), and checked the score, finding I’d won by two. Woot!

Couple this with a particularly lucid dream from two nights before (where, after realizing I was dreaming, I proceeded to run around shattering glass with my mind), and I’d say my mind’s been pretty active the past couple of days.

Dreams fascinate me, enough so that I think I’m going to use this blog to document particular interesting ones that I have. Supposedly “dream journaling” is the first step to achieving more control over your dreams, and that sounds like fun. And besides, who doesn’t love them some Queensrÿche?

Categories: Dreams, Thoughts

The Almighty Calendar

20 Sep 2010 Leave a comment

Being a planner, and being married to a planner, means that sermons like yesterday’s hit pretty close to home. The discussion reminded me of one of my favorite quotations (from President Eisenhower), which I’ve tucked away in my mind to help me resolve the tension:

Planning is essential. Plans are worthless.

There’s real wisdom in that statement. The way I see things it’s not so much about plans themselves but about the attitude with which those plans are made and kept. The calendar should not be an end unto itself, but rather the means to a greater end. And if it can make success more likely, why not embrace it? I sincerely believe that a calendar wielded well makes a person more effective for the kingdom.

Great organizations understand that truth. The Five Dysfunctions Of A Team explains one example of where this is true:

One of the best tools for ensuring commitment is the use of clear deadlines for when decisions will be made, and honoring those dates with discipline and rigidity. The worst enemy of a team that is susceptible to lack of commitment is ambiguity.

Lots more that I’m sure could be said on this topic. I’d be interested in hearing further thoughts if any of my few readers has them.

Categories: Books, Quotations, Thoughts