4 min read

2022: A Series of Small Steps

Update: I accidentally jumped ahead a year in the initial post. 2021 was The Bad Year and 2022 was The Good One. Sorry, time is difficult.

2021 was not a hard year to beat. Someday I'll probably write about it in full, but suffice it to say my mental health was about the worst it's ever been. So bad that I had to quit one job and take a metric ton of psychiatric medication just to stay functional for the other one.

This led to a pretty serious re-evaluation of how I was living. It turns out that investing your entire sense of self-worth into one pursuit, in this case being a "creative machine learning" guy, has some drawbacks. So this year I took a pretty big step back from what I'd been doing, and it paid off in spades. I started caring about things, feeling emotions, and generally enjoying my life again. Last year set a low bar, but I still think this has been one of the best years of my life.

While I was unemployed in January, after quitting my second teaching job, I started doing a hundred days of ThreeJS as a way to fill my time. It ended up being a life-changing experience and helped me re-evaluate my "creative practice". Sketching every day, being fine with terrible-looking work as long as I completed some artifact, really got me back into creative work in general. I did not think through eventually hosting these, which was a mistake, but I'll get around to it eventually.

I followed that up with another hundred days in the fall, which was similarly rewarding, and resulted in this very website!

I got a job in February that, as trading labor for money goes, has been really great. Actually getting paid to do things I enjoy, in a workplace that seems to accept me as is, is a pretty rare experience.

Starting in June, because of some health problems, I got very nearly sober for the first time since childhood. I'll still make an exception for a great bottle of wine or a cocktail made by my brother, but I don't plan on going back otherwise. Not having drinking as a crutch in social situations has been hard, but I feel a lot better, a lot more myself, than I have in years.

I've been working towards things I'm excited about, pushing myself out of a pretty deep slump, and I feel optimistic about the future. Can't ask for much more out of a year.

I guess this is where people usually put a list, so here goes:


  • 200 days of making, with only one missed day
  • 15 blog posts, counting this one
  • Countless notes (successfully migrated my own notes and record-keeping to public and self-hosted)
  • Launched open.Eyebeam
  • Finally made something with the LinkedIn stuff I've been playing with off and on for literally six years: Proud Employees
  • Open sourced Artsby, Gatsby digital exhibit framework (although apparently it needs updating now and fucked if I'm gona do it)
  • Nice little scraper for bothering queerphobes
  • Major update to Undersco.re ID system
  • Freelance motor prototype (not sure how much I can say about this yet)


  • Organization: I did not, with my second hundred days project, successfully reorganize all of my many disparate past forms of record-keeping, note-taking, and project documentation. Mostly because I Fucking Hate Doing It. Still, some progress was made, and I'm going to keep pushing this stupid boulder.
  • Documentation: this is pretty tied into organization, but it gets its own bullet, since making stuff without telling anyone or even documenting it for my own sake is one of my worst habits. I've been better about documenting my work this year, but there's lots of room to improve: can't share it with people if it's not documented!
  • Be kinder. One side effect of the many changes in my lifestyle and medical regimen in the past year is that I'm much more aware of myself and other people. I've been numb and selfish for a long time, and that's starting to change, but the garden must be tended in order to grow.
  • Face your fears: I started putting work "out there" again, for the first time in a while, but I'd like to keep going, expanding on what I've built this year. This leads nicely into next year's goals.


  • Show work in a gallery, digital or physical
  • Give at least one talk
  • Complete at least 2 big personal projects
  • Do at least one big collaborative projects
  • Apply to 10 grants/fellowships/etc.
  • Further reduce big tech dependencies - get rid of Gmail/gDrive, iPhone, etc.
  • Find a studio/art collective to work with in person
  • Focus on building community on & offline.
  • (Stretch) find and kill god.



  • Saloum
  • Severance

Listened to:

  • Self-Titled, Zeal & Ardor
  • All Roads Lead To The Gun, Militarie Gun
  • Nightmare Logic, Power Trip (RIP Riley Gale)


  • Elden Ring
  • Persona 4 Golden
  • Citizen Sleeper (wasn't blown away by any of the indies I played this year but this was probably the best)


  • Blindsight/Echopraxia, Peter Watts
  • Manhunt, Gretchen Felker-Martin
  • Devil House, John Darnielle
  • The Stormlight Archive, Brandon Sanderson (I'm so embarrassed but this legitimately got me through a ton of this year)


  • Snorkeled in St. Croix
  • Gave a best man speech at a wedding
  • Attended first in-person WordHack since 2020
  • Sprained my ankle three separate times at three separate hardcore shows (the best show was one I did not sprain my ankle at, Militarie Gun at St. Vitus)

Here's hoping we all keep taking the next step in 2023. Onward and upward.