Things I am Thankful For in 2020


This year has been different for many reasons. Despite the current situation, I have been fortunate enough to have still my job, my home, and my healthcare. Beyond that good fortune, here are a few things I am particularly thankful for this year:

  • Elyssa — She is the only one that I would want to go through all of this maddeness with. For much of this time, she has been the only person I have been able to talk to in person. She has been my workout partner, my dinner date, and my best friend. If I was going to get to have only one person to get through this with—I am glad it’s her.
  • My Almost Two-Year-Old Niece — I have not been able to spend as much time with her as we might have otherwise, but the times we have gotten to see her have been a blast. I think she’s going to enjoy going to Disney World with Elyssa and me in a couple of years.
  • My New Pen Hobby — It’s been an excellent combination of distraction and comfort. I have enjoyed learning more about the pens, figuring out what I enjoy using, and then actually using them. I’m sure I’ll post about how I got into things at some point in the future (I have already written the first draft in one of my notebooks), but the big thing is that it has been an escape from all the chaos of what is going on.
  • Clemson Football– Similar to the above-described pen hobby, Clemson Football has been a distraction for me. I think I realized how much having Clemson football games made things feel “normal-ish” when COVID-19 forced Trevor Lawerence out of two games and then resulted in the cancellation of the Florida State game. I am hopeful that college basketball being back (the first games were yesterday) will provide some further escapism in the coming weeks.

Obviously, I do not intend for this post to be a comprehensive list of everything that I am thankful for this year. My family’s continued good health would have to be part of a more detailed list. The people and things listed above, however, have helped keep me semi-sane during this crazy time.

Happy Thanksgiving, y’all.



It was about ten years ago that I first signed up for a Linode instance. My goal at the time was to use it to host a new website ( and also be a place that I could do things like play with Ruby development or other programming tasks.

Over time, that little Linode instance grew to support multiple other websites (my father’s dental practice; Elyssa’s photograph business, Kivus & Camera; and, my Disney site, Rope Drop DOT Net). I also wrote a few posts that I am still particularly proud of, namely:

As time went on, however, I started “writing” less and ended up mainly just sharing links. In 2017, I stopped writing at altogether. Also, during that time, my father hired a firm to design his website, and Elyssa moved to a platform specially designed for photography businesses. I would still write occasionally on Rope Drop DOT Net, but not as much as I would like. I would also think about setting up a new site for more general writing.

Unfortunately, my efforts to stand up a new site failed on several occasions. Also, I realized that I no longer wanted to deal with all the security configuration, updates, etc.. associated with running a Linode instance. Instead, I just wanted a place that I could write.

On a recent episode of the Six Colors, Jason Snell explained that he was moving his site to Pressable, a WordPress hosting service provided by Automatic (i.e., the people who make WordPress and Jetpack.) Though Pressable is more expensive than my old Linode instance, it took me about 20 minutes to get this new site set up (instead of the hours it would take via Linode.) Also, I was able to automatically migrate Rope Drop DOT Net over without any issues (well, issues that I have been able to find so far.)

Ultimately, this is an end of an era for me. Once I get moved over (in some form—the site is so old, I wonder what the Pressable people are going to say), I will turn off that Linode instance I have been using for almost a decade. Maybe, at some point, I will decide I want to maintain a server again, but, for now, I just want a place that I can acutally write something again.

A New Place to Write


Every few years I get the urge to start a new place that I can write. I still have Rope Drop DOT Net for my Disney writing, but I have not had a place to write about other things for a number of years. I am hoping this can be that place.