August 2019 was a crappy month. I’m just emerging from nasty fevers of the body and mind and haven’t fully recovered yet. I’ve become more cynical in the last few weeks – which I didn’t think was possible – and the level of baseline depression has increased; simply contemplating the monotony of daily life has started giving me anxiety attacks. But even under this pall of gloom, I have found some reasons to cheer:

  • I bought a new Kindle. I was running out of space to keep my books, and since a friend tipped me off to the existence of a service called Libgen, I have decided to move my entire library to this little device. So far, so good. I’m currently reading Kellanved’s Reach, the third book in Ian C. Esslemont’s riveting Path to Ascendancy trilogy. Before this, I read Trick Mirror, a new collection of essays about the sense of self in the Age of the Internet by Jia Tolentino. I found the essays well-written though not particularly enlightening, but others could easily disagree.
  • I discovered community stackscripts on Linode in an embarrassing moment considering I’ve been using Linode for a couple years now. Stackscripts make life so much easier; I don’t have to bank on Runcloud or Serverpilot to install WordPress on a VPS anymore. The script by OpenLiteSpeed also bundles a Let’s Encrypt certificate and launches WordPress with LiteSpeed. I simply have to route the domain through CloudFlare and install Heatshield on the server, which is cache, SSL, CDN, WAF, all under five minutes and for $5/mo.
  • Tool released its new album on August 30. I’ve been listening to it in bits and pieces – travesty, I know – but just this morning, I listened to the whole thing in one go. Thirteen years is a terribly long time between albums but it would seem Fear Inoculum was worth the wait. August 30 was also a good day to release the album; I was in terrible shape that day. I particularly enjoyed the track called ‘Descending’, which I thought was a little strange because a song of the same name by Lamb of God is one of my favourites and I’m wondering if this is simply an affinity to the word itself.
  • I utterly detested one of the few epiphanies I had last month (which precipitated the first wave of depression) because it caused me to stop blogging. But I started writing again late last week, about unexpected things collected under the page ‘Definitions’ (link in the menu and here). Nothing clears the fog in my head like writing has for nearly two decades now, so not being able to do it for whatever reason can become quickly maddening. The ability to produce words is where I locate the ultimate potency of my being.