2023 was a relatively quiet year for icanthascheezburger.
It wasn’t a quiet year for me, though. I spent much of the year adjusting to the new reality that the most important person in my life decided to pursue another relationship and moved out. I had experienced a previous loss in momentum back in 2021 when I set the ambitious goal to publish 100 posts, and it was related issues that was taking the wind out of my sails.
The details and aftermath are mundane and not likely to be that meaningful to anyone but me. If you’ve experienced the same, you probably know what it’s like. In retrospect, I’m impressed I stayed as on top of things as I did. I was close to being a functioning adult as one could reasonably expect, but I was a depressed functioning adult.
The theme of 2023 for me has been “radical self-care.” Sometimes just continuing to exist from day to day was all I could handle. There were a lot of evenings where I remember just sitting in the hammock chair in my office, doomscrolling on TikTok and generally feeling numb, save for the comfort of being cocooned in the chair and having some cats curled up with me.
But I also did a lot of activities this year. I biked something like 150 miles this year which probably isn’t that much to a biking enthusiast but it’s more than I’ve ever biked in a year. I kept up with a commitment to regularly play retro games with one of my friends and we have completed a ton of games this year (more on that in a later post). I landed four different fixes into Ruby on Rails and even experimented with making a code change to Ruby itself (the PR didn’t land but I’m not mad; I got to learn how to play around with the Ruby C code).
I went to therapy. I relaxed in soaking tubs. I floated in sensory deprivation tanks. I even did some mushroom trips. I met new people and made some friends along the way (some people things didn’t work out with, but that’s okay). I went on dates.
And in the last couple months especially, I felt myself starting to turn a corner. And I found I had more I wanted to post on here, and so I just started posting more stuff.
Writing on icanthascheezburger is a virtuous cycle; it makes me feel good to post a lot of stuff on here, but I need to feel adequately good in the first place to be able to have ideas on what to write, and to write stuff that I like enough to post. And it was hard for me to do that in the last couple years while I watched the most important relationship in my life steadily decline from being really healthy and a solid foundation I could count on I knew was always going to be there, to becoming uncertain, to eventually not being there at all. When my employer announced in February (the week my ex left, actually), I joked to my manager that I could handle it just fine because I was accustomed to spending months uncertain if a relationship (work or otherwise) has a future.
I still don’t think that icanthascheezburger has any particular major theme aside from “stuff Aaron’s interested in talking about.” I plan to overall keep doing that, but hopefully with more regularity. One of the biggest lessons I learned this year is that home is what you keep showing up to, and I want to make icanthascheezburger feel like a home to me.
I kind of look at John Gruber’s legendary Daring Fireball blog as aspirational. That’s not to say I want to make a DF clone. But as I look at the Apple bloggers and podcasters I’ve looked up to, I see this generation of now middle-aged straight white dudes whose values aren’t quite lined up with mine. I still respect their work, but I realize now that it’s okay for new voices to sprout up. It’s not like the internet has a limited number of column inches.
In particular, my adulthood has seen Apple ascend from being a relative underdog to being an incredibly powerful force, and though I know Apple’s history and humble roots too, I want to be louder about the stuff I think we should be worried about more, both Apple related and otherwise. The generation of Apple literati I’ve grown up reading and listening to were shaped by a different era of Apple’s history, one where you could unironically refer to Apple as beleaguered and in need of people to champion them.
So I plan to write about that more. I want to talk about major issues facing the world and the tech world. I’ll talk about topical stuff without feeling an urge to weigh in on every single event. I will be buying a Vision Pro and I expect I’ll be talking about it a lot. I may not have a post for everything, but I’ll post when I feel I have something worth saying.
I don’t expect to ever amass a following of tens of thousands or even thousands (if I can pull off three figures I’d be delighted, to be honest), but I’d love to put out some good writing and get people thinking more about stuff. But icanthascheezburger doesn’t have to become big. If it got big enough that I could make a living off of it, that would be wild. But I’m happy to keep it a hobby, sharing thoughts with my dozens of readers (even “dozens” is probably a stretch).
And barring that, this is a journal where I am sharing my body of writing work with the world, and people can watch me work on my writing craft.
Expect an uptick in posts as 2023 nears an end and I am getting more relaxation in, and let’s see if I can’t really hit that 100-post mark in 2024.
Finally, if you are reading this, thank you. It’s humbling to get to spend a little time in your brain.