I went on a nice 75-mile twisties ride on Monday, my first in probably a few months. My poor motorcycle needs to go in the shop, though: the sound changed about the same time it was chilly and it was stalling before it got warmed up (it's fuel-injected and that shouldn't happen), and it's lost some of its power. Might need a valve adjustment, come to think of it.

I started sending out resumes last week, and of all the crazy things, people respond. The last time I was sending out resumes was in 2002, and the economy sucked and I didn't have a lot of experience, so my habitual expectation is that my resume goes into a giant black hole, and I never expect to hear anything. Except that now I have some years of concrete experience doing scary-sounding things, so I'm getting responses. I'm also remembering that I'm not desperate, and I don't have to take a Java job if I don't want to--I can probably even find another Perl job. And I don't feel like this needs to be the Job of Jobs, necessarily, since my plans over the coming couple of years are...in flux.

I am still relationship-cranky, with little patience for the one thing about my current relationship that I honestly wish were different. A week ago it didn't bother me (and hasn't for the past two years), and now it bothers me a lot, so I'm still investigating that. Clearly something was different this time, and it struck one or more nerves. I have some ideas, and it's coming clear slowly, but in the meantime I have to stay on top of my mood and thinking to make sure I don't slip into a more negative space. Which is fine. It's good practice.

An acquaintance of mine, Howard Gobioff, died rather suddenly yesterday, of some kind of cancer that originated as a non-aggressive lymphoma. There's a nice obituary here, which doesn't say much about him personally because he was extremely private (he didn't tell anyone about the lymphoma in 2003). Howard was one of the early employees (first 50) of Google, and developed one of their core technologies which put them years ahead of any other company. I didn't know him very well--we never quite hit it off, maybe because of his privacy and my attitude problem, I don't know. But he was a good guy, and a good friend to a lot of my friends, so he'll be missed.

In the aftermath, some friends on chat referred to "the big C", and one person said "cancer is a bastard". That feels odd to me...to me, cancer is a thing that happens, like a sunny day, or breaking your arm, or buying a car or losing your wallet. Aren't unpleasant things difficult enough without anthropomorphizing them? It's like we've been shot with an arrow, and instead of dealing with it straight on, we make up all this stuff in our minds and add a second arrow right on top of the first.

But I dunno. I haven't had cancer. Maybe it is a vicious mean thing that makes fun of your big nose and receding chin while it tries to kill you. You'd think people would mention that part, though.