What I’m Reading Right Now

books
Work has quickly returned to the fairly normal breakneck pace. The box office has returned thanks to some surprising numbers from End of Watch, Hotel Transylvania and Taken 2. I’m trying to catch up on some reading, whether blogs books or otherwise and wanted to share some of what I’m reading right now.

First, since I live online, here’s what I’m reading there:

  • First on the list is the terrific new blog from the folks behind Uncrate — GALLIVANT, a travel guide for guys. The site is divided into five categories: Stay, Scarf, Sip, Shop and See. Exposing great hotels, restaurants, bars, stores and locations in cities around the world. Really obsessed with this site right now.
  • Fake TV Character Twitter accounts from Aaron Sorkin TV shows. Love Will McAvoy from HBO’s The Newsroom (who I wish was a real news anchor and debate moderator) and Fake West Wing President Josiah Bartlett. (Consequently, both accounts are actually written by the same guy.)
At work, I’m reading some short reads on new and current approaches to building websites.
  • Mobile First by Luke Wroblewski. A part of the brilliant A Book Apart series and a terrific follow-up to Ethan Marcotte’s Responsive Web Design that I just finished. These books are written by guys who have actually done it. As someone in the middle of a project like this, I’m intrigued by these new approaches.
And the books I’ve recently read or am currently reading for enjoyment:
  • Juliet, Naked by Nick Hornby. I love Hornby. High Fidelity is one of my all-time favorite books. But for the last several years, while he’s collaborated with Ben Folds and written young adult fiction, he just kinda lost his way. Juliet is really a return to the style that made him famous.
  • Love Wins by Rob Bell. I’m a fan of most stuff that Rob Bell writes. His latest is pretty controversial. Looking forward to reading it. Hoping that it inspires me somewhat.

So what are you reading?

A Post for 2012

I’ve spent the last 10 days on vacation. A much needed one. When you’re dealing with agencies on a large-scale project that requires virtually all of your time, it’s good to take a break when they do.

So I spent my Christmas vacation sleeping, catching up on movies and generally laying about while I wasn’t eating.

And man, did I ever eat. Three amazing dinners to celebrate my birthday — one at Trezo Vino, one at J. Gilbert and one at Blanc Burger. Great meals all, but my waistline is definitely worse for the wear.

My birthday and Christmas were terrific: I got everything I really wanted (except more storage for my computer…I’ll just buy that myself), including two new rad pair of sneakers and a new leather messenger bag for work (it makes me feel totally grown up).

And now, it’s officially 2012. Resolutions suck, but it’s a great time to start anew and set new goals for the year. So here are mine:

  • I’m getting back onto Weight Watchers for real. We had some great success with it last year, but I stopped counting points and really lost my way. No more messing around. I’ve got 50 pounds to get to my goal weight. I’m aiming for getting there by the end of the year. Ideally, I’d like to be there by summer, but I want to be realistic too.
  • I’ve got two big website launches this year. I want them both to go well.
  • I want to find some sense of purpose for this site. Whether it’s WordPress or Tumblr or whatever…I want to post more and have more clarity in my posts.
  • I obviously want to improve my work/life balance…whatever that might mean.
  • I want to go on another adventure with Alli. It’s been too long since our Italian adventure. It’s time for another.
  • Drink more water.
  • I’d like to take another crack at reading 25 books this year. It’s been 5 years since I last did it. Look for an upcoming post with the books I intend to read this year.
  • Keep being awesome.

Now that they’re written down, I have to stick to them, right? Isn’t that the point of stuff like this? What do you plan to do this year?

What I’m…

Wild at Heart

Wild at Heart by John Eldridge

Wild at Heart: Discovering the Secret to a Man’s Soul
by John Eldredge
RATING: 6 out of 10

I’ve been “reading” this book for quite a long time. I started it sometime in January and it took until June for me to finish. This was not necessarily the fault of the book (although it could be improved), but more the fault of it not being what I wanted to read.

Normally, I would have given up, but I really wanted to actually get through the book because I love the concept behind it – it delves into exactly what the title says. It talks about the spiritual aspect of how men need to be men…we’re built to be wild and passionate people and the world has emasculated us in a way that keeps us from reaching our full potential.

It sounds a little new-agey, but Eldredge has some excellent points in the book. Unfortunately, he struggles to string them together into coherent chapters. The ideas are there, but the book really needs some editing. (Mr. Eldredge, you can email me shane at this domain dot com if you need an editor.)

Over time, I felt like the book was repeating its key concepts instead of focusing them into specific sections. And while I wanted to really like it, I just couldn’t get over the organization of the book.

What did I miss?

So I’m back from Jamaica.

The Jamaican Sky

Alli and I and the rest of the family have been at Beaches Negril since last Saturday. While we were there, my brother and his lovely significant other Kelly got hitched on the beach on Tuesday afternoon. Both families were there as were a bunch of Jake’s friends and we had a great time. After an all-day journey yesterday, we’re back in Kansas City, away from the island humidity.

It looks as though the internet didn’t break while I was gone, although I  did win a contest and my biography was posted on Brad’s site. It looks like everything else is as it was. 

I read two books while I was gone, finally finishing Wild at Heart by John Eldridge and quickly consuming Playing for Pizza by John Grisham. I’ll post reviews soon.

As far as the rest of the week…I’m taking the rest of the week off from work. I may tackle a redesign of my own site if I can do it quickly. We’ll see.

How are you?