The Meaning of Life

Cherry blossoms in April

This was a good spring for cherry blossoms. We had many sunny days when the trees were in bloom in April. On a day like that it’s easy to think the meaning of life is beauty and calm and love and peace.

White tulips.

The same when the white lilacs are in bloom. Though lilacs do make poor cut flowers. They don’t last long. So maybe the meaning of life is impermanence.

Skulls lined up on the side of the road.

But this was a shocking scene a month ago. While on a run, just a short distance from home, someone had lined up these skulls and jaw bones on the side of the road. The last I looked they are still there though some have been crushed by a passing car or two.

Mysterious. Who went out of their way to place these on the side of the road? A troubled soul? A demented person? Or a mischievous child on their way home from school? Coyote skulls and jaw bones perhaps? If so, maybe a bobcat or cougar placed them there to mark their territory.

Whatever their origin and story, seeing them every so often is jarring.


On to the future

Well, on to bringing this blog back to life. I set up a mirror site of this blog in a virtual machine on my MacBook so I can add back in the ability to get an email each time I post something. In that virtual machine I have the entire site running on the same WordPress – php – Nginx – MariaDB environment this site uses. And with that I can add and test the features needed to revive the regular mailings.

But why not just use existing software to do the same thing? All the existing solutions gather emails and information from the mailings, and I don’t want to contribute to readers getting more spam. By coding everything myself, I keep readers’ emails private from email harvesters. And coding such features is an interesting puzzle.

Not too long ago I worked on a commercial site that used a commercial plugin to limit the size of and amount of carts. I discovered that a 100 lines of code worked better than the commercial plugin. And we were able to chuck the commercial plugin which used 47 files and thousands of lines code.