Reflections at my 53rd birthday


It’s been a month since I’ve posted, and rightly so, as during the holiday season, typically, things in our business slow to a crawl. We’ve had all sorts of events, in the US. A new president is just about to take office, as a revolutionary ex-president is leaving. Some of the latter’s policies are being systematically dismantled, some folks are thrilled, others not so much. We’re in a time of systemic change, as far as I’m concerned. Will this be a good thing? I’ll leave your opinions to you, but in my opinion, this places us all in a state of flux that leaves us wondering where and when the next shoe will drop.

2016 has been, by all measures, a sea change in our view of the world. Key people in the entertainment business died. Many hugely influential musicians, actors and public persona have left us. I’m still devastated, on a personal note, by the loss of David Bowie.

The increase in frequency and intensity of hacking attacks on critical systems, not the least of which have been the verified Russian breaches of the electoral process, but add to that Swift, a financial messaging system, LinkedIn, MySpace, Yahoo and Tumblr suffered account information hacks, and even the NSA was not immune as ironically many of the tools they use were stolen. These attacks have placed us all on alert. Our need to be ever more vigilant, in our personal as well as our business practices has never been more evident.

On a lighter note, The Chicago Cubs, my lifelong, and long suffering favorite baseball team capped off an amazing season with their first World Series victory in 108 years! Seems that George Lucas was wrong by one year in his prediction of 2015 from Back to the Future. An incredible feat, and one to which we Chicagoans can certainly unify our happiness.

On a personal front, 2016 saw my presence as a blogger grow with a combination of much more consistent postings, and the extending of my role within the Tech Field Day delegate crew, and attendance at the very first Pure Accelerate show, two HPE Discover shows, both London and Las Vegas, and of course, my 11th VMWorld. I’ve participated in a number of podcasts, as well as a quite enjoyable Dashboard video by Marc Farley on The role I have been performing at OnX Enterprise Systems has been expanded to that of Team Lead, and I’ve received new certifications on vRealize from VMware, an HET from Hitachi Data Systems, a few certifications from HPE on converged infrastructure, StoreOnce, and Synergy, as well as a Design Master from Zerto, and a sales certification from Pure Storage. I’ve also begun posting some blog posts on the Geek Speak section of Solar Winds’ Thwack site.

In the coming year, I hope to expand some of these experiences, with more TechFieldDay appearances, trade show presence, and potentially starting a podcast of my own. It’d be great also to spend more time with a guitar. Just the other night, I played again for the first time in about 6 months, and I must say, what a rush!

As I’ve just had my 53rd birthday, I have reflected, as do many, on the previous year. It’s been interesting, certainly.

In summary, control those things you can, keep pushing your reach, and try desperately to do the best you can to endure the tumultuous political climate, and the tenuous grasp we have on those things we cannot change. Life is truly a journey, do your best to take the right path. Continue to challenge yourself, and as a mentor of mine once told me, if you’re going to fail at something, fail big!





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