When I’m playing video games that have exploration elements, sometimes I wish I had an indicator to let me know which door leads to the next area, and which door just contains side areas to explore for loot and story background bonuses.

I never know which doors are which. Will this collapsed wall and tunnel lead to another extra story tidbit, or will it collapse behind me and force me to next stage of the main story, irreversibly preventing me from finishing my thorough exploration of the previous area?

I end up doing a lot of short browsing of all…


It doesn’t matter if I’m visiting the redwoods of California or the canyons of Southern Utah — a consistently entertaining part of being a tourist in the outdoors is seeing the signs of the constant struggle between park rangers and stubborn tourists.

Those stories are woven into the very fabric of the park itself. On one hand, you have the poor, thankless park rangers just trying their best to preserve the landscapes and maintain the park rules. …


We don’t know how our brains work, but somehow we’re still largely able to rely on them to subconsciously prevent nocturnal catastrophes.

I think we’re all a lot close to nighttime incontinence than we’d like to admit.

Thank goodness something was looking out for me last night while I was sleeping. I don’t know if it was divine intervention or some vestigial part of my consciousness refusing to yield completely to sleep, but either way I was forcibly held back from going over that dangerous edge.

I must have drank too much water last night before going to bed, because in my dreams I was on an epic hunt for a restroom. Despite a ceaseless search, I never found one in working…


Alex Beachum, creator of Outer Wilds, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Playing the video game Outer Wilds was different from so many other games I’ve played before. It drew me in, kept me invested, and (despite the small size of it’s world) it gave me a truer sense of free exploration than even the huge open world games achieve.

The only things I knew about the game before playing it were some comments made by a youtuber about how if you knew exactly what to do you could beat the game in five minutes, and that every 25 minutes the sun explodes and everything gets reset. …


Trust is so easy to lose, and so hard to gain back. Especially in a marriage. And I’m not even talking about the big things that we all first think of, like cheating. I’m talking about the small things like eating more than your half of the pizookie.

It only takes one time. I was careless. Kami and I were having a dessert together and I was so engaged in the delightful conversation that my autopilot brain just kept going. …


Always on the Emotional Edge

With finances, people mistakenly assume that times will stay as good as they are now — that there’s no need to worry about things like emergency preparedness, food storage, emergency funds, and contingency plans. We do the same thing with the mental and emotional side of things. All of us can benefit from building up and maintaining an emotional turtle shell — a reinforced core to our emotional structure that we can rely on when times get tough.

The unpredictable winds of life can blow away everything we so carefully build. We need to have something solid at the center that can’t be taken away from us, where we can emotionally survive the toughest storms.

We thrive in environments where we get to feel like we’re in control. As long as things in life are rolling along…


TLDR: Great option for fancy themed dining. Definitely plays well into the Norse theme. Looking forward to how they expand and grow the idea in the future. I would highly recommend it for anyone looking for a different place to try when you’re looking for food on the mid-high stretch of the monetary spectrum.

This restaurant had strong Viking-banquet-hall vibes.

It’s rare that I find myself really rooting for a specific business to succeed. I usually spend my time on the “how do I get the most out of my money” side of things. …


Nothing says “Squeaky Clean!” like standing a puddle of lightly-used shower water mixed with whatever mystery liquid might be bubbling back up the drain.

It is so incredibly satisfying to run water down a freshly de-clogged shower drain. It’s the same satisfaction I get from cleaning, organizing, and washing. It’s the feeling of taking something that has slowly been worsening over time and then fixing it back to it’s optimal state.

The satisfaction is even greater because a slow-draining shower drain is so bothersome. Showers are supposed to be the magical place where both physical and mental grime gets washed away and can be forgotten. …


You better watch out who you poke fun at, and what behaviors you deem to be fair game for mocking. Those people and their silly-seeming habits might end up being just the things you wish you had in a moment of crisis.

My dad recently took an unhealthy fascination with grommets when he got his hands on a nice grommet tool. The original use case was standard enough — putting holes in a tarp to give it more places to tie down — but from there it grew. Grommet-making became the next best thing to duct tape and WD-40. Does…


All the thoughts swirling around my head, represented as doodles. I explain each part in the rest of the article.
Introductory podcast episode with more information about why these goal-related ideas have been on my mind.

I was supposed to keep to my schedule of publishing an article every Sunday. I was pretty solid for a while there, but then I missed my first week… right at that time of the year when everyone was supposed to be at their highest levels of goal commitment.

Tarron Lane

A technology and life enthusiast, sharing the occasional unsolicited opinion, anecdote, or insight.

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