barrel

on erock's blog

I wonder where I'll float next?

I think about the first xkcd post every once in awhile. There is something about it that resonates with me. My wife tells me I tend to go with the flow, feels about right.

I wonder how much it has helped or hurt. Am I happening to life, or is life happening to me?

Sometimes I surprise myself with how much I love to code. If my life were a book, the margins of every page would be scribbed with thoughts about code, algorithms, and project ideas. Hidden in my mind are ideas dying to reach the surface for air. Why do I enjoy this so much? What is it about writing code that gives me so much meaning?

Since I was thirteen, all I could think about were computers, how they work, and how to build things with them. Clearly I have an affinity for engineering, but it never felt that way to me growing up. Engineering never piqued my intest. What is so special about software engineering? Is it just the wrong term for what we do? I think I resonate most with the builder mentality. Code is a tool, a means to an end, but even saying that doesn't feel right. I'm obssessed with the process of writing code. There's nothing more exciting than calling git init or seeing code turn into a utility. I get so excited when I get to read my code a hundred times just to figure out how to refactor it. Starting with something that doesn't work and then making a change and it works is so satisfying. That reinforcement learning is so potent.

When I feel the pressure of work or my other various projects, I reach for my release: running. It stretches my mind and forces me to exert energy in the physical world. I need that release to recalibrate my brain after staring at code all day.

I feel something building, a flame growing. Is it building in the right direction? Can I maintain my passion for code if I fail? Time will tell, I suppose. I don't know why I'm so scared, but I can't stop this momentum. Like when I was a kid, I'm being pulled into the event horizon.

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