Mike Rowe on Discovery, Realization and Lamb Castration

I saw this video tonight (via @siracusa) and was absolutely blown away. The video is a bit over 20 minutes long, but it blew my mind and I want to share it with you.

I want to be absolutely clear about this: I pay a lot of lip service to respecting farmers. (My father’s father, who lived in Forest City, Iowa, was a farmer his entire life.) I talk about how important factory workers and construction workers and mechanics are.

But when it really comes down to it, I am one of those elitist jerks who thinks that he’s better than a blue collar job. In my mind (and in more subtle behaviors) I degrade manual labor. I just want to confess that and point out that if we, as a society, keep making more and more people like me without making more people like the folks mentioned in this video, we’re in big trouble. I don’t know exactly what or how to change, but I’m very personally interested in the topic.

Moved In

(Warning: this is a blatant and potentially boring “Life Update” entry!)

For those of you who haven’t moved across the country, let me give you a tip: even if it’s a good move (as it was for us), realize the amount of work you’re getting into before doing it. It’s a ton of work. Furthermore, when you add buying your first house to that equation, the result is a one-two punch that will K.O. your evenings and weekends for weeks to come. (For an added dose of Lewis-brand reality, add a five-month-old baby to that mix. And a new job. New wardrobe. New church. New commute.)

You can probably tell I’ve been a tad worn out. And frankly, I haven’t been doing most of the work! Steph has pulled far more than her fair share of the weight, and relatives and friends have pitched in generously (especially Steph’s dad). So it is with great pride that I announce we are done. Yes, done! Our boxes are unpacked. Things are generally where they’re supposed to be. The whole thing took four months from the first box in Cupertino to the last in Forest Lake. For those of you who helped, I greatly appreciate it.

That’s not to say there’s no work left to be done, but the work remaining is of the “individual, non-urgent project” type. We can function day-to-day without any problem now, and that’s a welcome change. The list of home improvement tasks stretches on (and always will), but hopefully it won’t stretch into the majority of our free time now.

In the last month or so I’ve also experienced a totally unexpected side-effect of owning a home: I now find myself automatically caring more about politics, the economy, and news outside the tech sector. (I’m sure having a child also affects this.) Somehow, there’s a tying down of a person that happens in the purchase of a home. Maybe it’s the weight of the size of the purchase sitting on my back that makes me want to be more aware of the realities around me. The heightened risk that loan represents makes me want to be sure to pay attention to the world, in case I’m supposed to see something and avoid a problem. I don’t really like the feeling, but something tells me this is just part of adulthood, and people who deal well with it learn how to not complain about it.