Tag Archives: rc week 4

Recurse Center: week 4, day 3

High temperature + air quality warning = actually took the subway again, instead of biking.

Half-napped during sitting time, which was just what I needed.

Check-ins felt fruitful — my group this week is working on interesting things, and Alice offered to help me with my Pebble C code if I’d like (and then she explained structs and some other relevant things to me!).

Also a headache, which wasn’t as helpful.

Took that as a sign that joining the hoomoos-seeking lunch trip was a good idea, and had a delicious falafel sandwich. Also the cheapest lunch I’ve yet had in New York (about five bucks).


And then I got a number of messages asking me if I wanted to talk, if I was doing alright, and I got suspicious and asked what was up, and then I learned that one of the brightest stars of a friend I have ever, ever known had passed away, and then I did not try to do anything else for the rest of the day. I went out with friends. Nathan came to join us. And even if I am far away from home, even if I am far away from most of the people who also knew Noirin, my amazing partner is here, and my incredible peers at RC are perhaps the most supportive community I could conceive of. And, at the very least, we are in a place where there’s a high value placed on doing what you need, on doing what is important and necessary for you right now. And that is making the whole grieving process just the tiniest bit less awful. And I will persevere — we will all need to pick up the batons that Noirin can’t carry anymore — but it’s going to take a little time.

Recurse Center: week 4, day 2

Holy cats. How is it already week four, though?!

Got here nice and early again, read The Giant Python book a bit, was here for all of sitting group (yay), and spied The Healthy Programmer on the bookshelf, so that’s where my first piece of the day went. I actually skimmed through a whole book! Would love to go back and read it in more detail at some point; it’s not that it’s not relevant right now, but there’s other stuff I (perhaps paradoxically) want to be focusing on more actively right now. But maybe I’ll finally get a laptop stand for when I’m standing, and a separate keyboard so I can still type…

Wrote a lot about the essence (or part of the suspected essence) of Recurse Center today in my 750words, working through the ebb and flow of my “am I doing this right?” fears:

There is so much I could do, and as what I could do narrows to what I am doing, and what I have done, there is a certain kind of panic that sets in. […]

The big thing is just time, though. It’s just time. It’s just having a lot of time, so that not all the time has to be used perfectly. This is part of how so much CAN be accomplished here. In the rest of my life, all my free time has to be used well to be effective.

Actually got my blog added so our internal bot can be like, “hey, Liene wrote this!” It really was as easy as I thought, and even if I’d messed it up, no one would have actually cared. Yay!

Remembered to go outside multiple times today (once for lunch, once for a “get up and walk around the block” break, and once to head to the curious and fascinating DOOB pop-up a few blocks from here). Now I want action figures of actual people.

Started to read about finite state machines, and fell down a Turing-inspired Wikipedia hole instead, which took up most of the end of the day. “Whoops.”

Spent pretty much all day flailing around vim — I keep thinking that Ben Orenstein’s “you’ll get frustrated enough to find better ways!” (my words, not his) will kick in, but mostly I just fling myself against the walls and occasionally get a different tone, if you’ll excuse the absurd metaphor.

But! Vim. We hadn’t hung out much in about a year. It’s nice to be practicing these things again.

Stuck around surprisingly long after I intended to go home, discovering more and more ways in which Ann and I are twins, talking about the culture of technology companies and different kinds of diversity and nonsense behaviors and rad engineers that have encouraged us both and “how do I know if I’m doing learning right” and why I get that square on my Pebble watchface at certain times and and and. I’m going to get her to teach me things, and it sounds like that will probably be Mischief (capitalized for fun, not for branding).

Recurse Center: week 4, day 1

Woke up after a night of atrocious sleep, so I bravely got myself out of bed, got dressed, ate breakfast, and recognized that I was indeed exhausted (not just grumpy about getting up). Talked it over with Nathan a bit, and realized I’d probably be useless at RC in that state, so I went back to bed.

This is so simple as to be boring, and yet I almost cried when I told Ann about it this morning, because it represents a really tangible piece of how RC enables me to take care of myself. I have a work ethic that is often so strong as to be unhealthy (ask me about the time I got off the lightrail to throw up, then got back on in the same direction), and I’m used to working jobs that don’t have a lot of give, anyway. For me to say, “I’m not going in right now, because I’m tired and I need to sleep some more,” some huge shifts had to happen. Not that they’re one-and-done kinds of things, but this is part of my general “why I need to go to the Recurse Center” thinking.

Worked through more LPTHW — I’m now into exercise 43, which is even more beastly than previously beastly-seeming exercises — and took breaks and mostly was pretty focused when I intended on being focused.

Kate Heddleston is in residence this week (and next week!), and she’s giving a talk on Human-Computer Interaction tonight, which I’m psyched about. I am a human! And I like computers! And I like it when these two kinds of things interact with one another, because I think it CAN be totally awesome.