Maintainable: Victor Rentea: Never Separate The Refactoring From The Deliverable

Here’s a great quote on software development from https://maintainable.fm/episodes/victor-rentea-never-separate-the-refactoring-from-the-deliverable-IWvo_ttQ [00:19:11]

Never ever ever ever separate the task of refactoring from the task of getting your feature implemented. You should never put refactoring on any board.

Sunset Boulevard

I just loved this Dana Gould quote at 00:06:39 in the Pepitone! bonus episode of the Dana Gould Hour Podcast:

Sunset boulevard is a billboard-lined sluice gate of cultural diarrhea, but sometimes you gotta drive it.

“Wisconsin Charm” in the 70’s

Henry Zebrowski has dozens if not hundreds of fantastic quotes from the Last Podcast on the Left, but as a Chicagoland resident this one really hit home. In part 2 of the John Wayne Gacy series the fellas were describing how “charming” and popular John Wayne Gacy was, and Henry made this comment at 00:50:32:

I just think he was loud and threw his money around, I think that’s just Wisconsin Charm (in 1977).


John Hodgman On Status and While Male Fragility

I just finished listening to the John Hodgman interview on the TV Guidance Counselor podcast and it was one of the most wonderful things that I’ve listened to all year. Not only was it very funny but they talked a lot about while male fragility and why that philosophy is so easy to accept for many. Here’s my favorite quote at [01:01:08]:

What I mean to say is if you know you don’t deserve [a status] at some level, then you can have a Reckoning with that and try to do good in the world.

But if that status, whatever it is, is protecting you from some inner oblivion, it’s very quick […] to come to the point where your mind then tells you “of course I deserve this.”

On the lighter side, John Hodgman also started one of his stories with this statement, which is a masterpiece of silly absurdism:

And I think this is where I was going with the story but this is where I’ll go…


TV Guidance Counselor Podcast: TV Guidance Counselor Episode 354: Emma Dumont http://tvguidancecounselor.libsyn.com/tv-guidance-counselor-episode-354-emma-dumont [01:25:45]

Here they’re discussing “The five thousand fingers of Dr. T” :

“Those kids movies that are surreal and dark and bizarre are the best because they capture what it feels like to be a kid, which is, everything is a huge deal and life or death and everything is scary and weird.”



“People who shut their eyes to reality simply invite their own destruction, and anyone who insists on remaining in a state of innocence long after that innocence is dead turns himself into a monster”



You will sometimes hear a certain kind of poet talk about how they have learned that energy can never be destroyed. They say how wonderful this is because it means that all the energy that people create with their love will survive forever. Their soul mate may have died in a tragic banjo accident, but the eternal energy of their love will always be with them. Except that love is not a phenomenon of energy, but rather a consequence of the distribution of energy. It comes about because of patterns and organized structures in your brain, built of matter and energy. In other words, love is a child of entropy, not energy. Those patterns that are love do not have any conservation law backing them up the way energy does. They come and go. In fact, the law of increasing entropy says that they will go, sooner or later. What had been pattern will become void, like a chalk painting washed away by the rain - the chalk survives even as it is washed down the drain, but the painting is gone. Your love and the love of everyone who has ever loved you will be washed away in the inevitable, unstoppable, universal flushing down the drain that is the fundamental law of increasing entropy. And then the sun will engulf the earth and reduce it to ash before shrinking into a white dwarf and dying in obscurity. Sorry.


“It Was All About Let’s Get Wealth”

Here’s a fantastic set of quotes at 22:34 from Maria Bustillos in the Decentralized Journalism episode of the Track Changes podcast. I feel the same about a lot of people who are solely speculators in the Bitcoin and Ethereum systems.

“The first time I went to a Bitcoin conference, I was actually so horrified that I just went off the whole thing for about a year. I was like, I just can’t even believe this, it’s so insane. [It was] these seasteading, libertarian, lunatics everywhere, you know, and I thought this is impossible.

But you know when I was at that [conference], and it was just all about, it was all, the opposite of what motivates me, it was all about “let’s get wealth, let’s get more wealth”, and they don’t even know what they want it for, it’s like, just wealth, that’s it.”

“Leadership Through Influence”

I was at a goodbye party for friend and leader our my church. She did a lot of everything and is considered to be a dear friend and leader of hundreds of people.

At one point someone whom I don’t know mentioned that my friend is an excellent example of leadership through influence. I just think that’s the perfect way to describe her style of leadership and I’ve been thinking about it a lot ever since.


This Ralph Waldo Emerson quote was shared with me by my friend Steve at work today when talking about standards for standards sake:

“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day. — ‘Ah, so you shall be sure to be misunderstood.’ — Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood.”


On Episode 368 of the The Mental Illness Happy Hour podcast Paul Gilmartin provides a wonderfully succinct explanation of the “depression spiral” at 01:18:41:

“It’s so easy to just sweep shit under the rug and go to our addictions and our life gets small, and we isolate, and we just pile on the shame and then the, the, you know the compulsive behaviors to try to numb the shame and it’s a vicious cycle that just pushes us closer and closer to the brink, and I’ve lived it. It’s no way to live.”


On Episode 366 of the The Mental Illness Happy Hour podcast Paul Gilmartin was discussing how self-improvement often improves your relationships with the people that you love with his guest Jen Elmquist LMFT. Here’s a great quote from Ms. Elmquist at 28:45:

I think across the board our goal in life should be, to be as great as we can be in order to make all of our relationships great.

I know that sounds really lofty, but that’s satisfaction, right? It’s when we’re relating well with ourselves, others, and the world around us we have a better experience and that’s good for everybody involved.



This is a quote from Tasha Robinson during the Pt. 2 - Wonder Woman / Paths Of Glory episode of the The Next Picture Show podcast. She ended up really liking Wonder Woman, but here (at 03:41) she describes why her expectations were so low:

I think my expectations have been set by how much I’ve consistently hated the DC extended universe movies, how many problems I’ve had with them, both just in terms of them all kindof being narratively messy and/or, just insensitive to basic humanity.

My gripe with these especially bad superhero movies is that Warner Brothers seems to be consistently making them like this on purpose (with Wonder Woman as an exception). It seems bizarre to me that someone sits in a room, has an idea to make a movie like Batman V Superman, makes it, sees how it turns out, and then says “yes, that’s great, let’s do that again”.


This is a great digital privacy quote from one of the ACLU panelists on the Tech at the ACLU: In practice, and in theory episode of the Track Changes podcast (at the 16:28 mark):

Digital privacy, and anti-surveillance and anti-censorship […] while we’re saying that this is one of the issues that the ACLU covers, it’s actually related to many, many issues.


And, if we’re talking about […] freedom of religion, if there’s a Muslim registry that’s gonna be built, it’s gonna to be built using these tools, it’s gonna be built using the data that’s extracted from the surveillance economy.


George Carlin, from The Comedians book, about how the responded to all of the terrible things that occurred at the end of the sixties:

I didn’t respond with rage to any of what was happening in 1968. Dr. King’s murder in April was depressingly predictable. There was a sinking feeling: that something good was ebbing away and being encouraged in that direction by its usual forces. The establishment was winning – its war, its assassins, its secret government – and that fact overpowered and debilitated me more than it enraged me.


Tim Bray, from his blog post The Women’s March about the worldwide protest of the new Trump administration that occurred the day after his inauguration:

I think it’s obvious. A bunch of reasonable people, led by women, needed to shout out and reassure each other that they weren’t crazy because they were horrified at a nouveau regime that’s crude, threatening, ignorant, oligarchic, reactionary, childish, corrupt, bigoted, thin-skinned, offensive, and oozes appallingly bad taste.



This is from the intro to the The Dog That Caught The Car episode of The Dana Gould Hour podcast. Dana was referring to the “media misinformation bubble” that he lives in:

There are too are too many people in this country talking past each other. The internet, which was supposed to unite us, has divided us farther. And I am of the belief that the election of someone like Donald Trump is in part a direct result of an electorate too far ensconced in their own ideological readouts to communicate even the simplest disagreements constructively. And that has to stop.


Cathy O’Neil on the Weapons Of Math Destruction episode of the Track Changes podcast. Earlier in the podcast she discusses her love of the “purity” of math and her disappointment after learning that Credit-Default-Swaps were being over-rated by ratings agencies in 2007 (at 16:57):

Math wasn’t the problem actually. It wasn’t that we had the wrong models, it’s that we really don’t care…about the truth, that it’s become a political thing.


Dana Gould on the The Ghost & Mr. Halloweenery episode of The Dana Gould Hour podcast at 3:16:40 speaking to legendary makeup artist Rick Baker on how their “weird little hobbies” have lead to fulfilling careers:

The only thing that I’ve noticed in my storied career is that things lead to things, and if you do things and make things, things come of it. And if you don’t do things and don’t make things then things don’t come of it.

The above quote from Dana Gould also reminds me of the ending of the book Smile by Raina Telgemeier:

My life didn’t magically turn perfect after that. I didn’t “get the guy” as they say. […] Instead, I threw my passion into things I enjoyed, rather than feeling sorry for myself. I realized that I had been letting the way I looked on the outside affect how I felt on the inside. But the more I focused on my interests, the more it brought out things I liked about myself. And that affected the way other people saw me.

Joel Hodgson on the The Ghost & Mr. Halloweenery episode of The Dana Gould Podcast at 3:08:31 on why he temporarily retired from show business immediately after turning down a lucrative sitcom offer (after he’d done Letterman and SNL):

Ultimately at the end of the day all you have to bargain with is yourself, and kindof like either I’m gonna do this or I’m not gonna do this but you have no real leverage outside of that, and I think, I just wasn’t feeling it, and I knew that I’d feel bad if I went and did this kindof hollow [sitcom role].


James Baldwin’s advice on why writers write from The Writer’s Chapbook (via Brain Pickings):

Something that irritates you and won’t let you go. That’s the anguish of it. Do this book, or die. You have to go through that. Talent is insignificant. I know a lot of talented ruins. Beyond talent lie all the usual words: discipline, love, luck, but most of all, endurance.



Michael Nygard in his Software Eats The World article:

Back in 2011, Marc Andreessen said ”software is eating the world”. There’s no reason to think that’s going to slow down soon. And as software eats the world, work becomes tech work.


Les Orchard, The Verge’s Web Sucks

“But, is it ultimately a good idea to optimize for these icebergs that consist of the tiny bit we came for, perched atop a great big submerged intelligence gathering apparatus assembled on-demand from a consortium of marketing & analytics firms?”

I have to say that this is my favorite article on technology so far this year. I highly recommend it.


Dana Gould, 2015 Just For Laughs Keynote Address (15:22):

“We are in a world where everything has been reduced to a competition, because in competition there is drama, and drama is compelling and when something is compelling people watch it and when people watch it you can sell advertising. And if you’re not selling something or buying something why the fuck are you awake?!? That’s why the news is no longer what happened, the news is who won.”


Geneva Reed-Veal, Sandra Bland’s mother, from her daughter’s funeral

“Let’s be for real. That was my baby. She wasn’t my convict. She wasn’t the suspect. She was my baby. And it would behoove y’all to think about what you all were doing at her age. So some of the stuff that’s in the news is true, some of the stuff that’s in the news is not. But the real issue here is something occurred that is going to change the world.”


Gennifer Hutchinson, tweet

“If you want to make it as a TV writer, don’t be a jerk. Make it so people want to spend all day in a room with you. Also a good life rule.”


Gabriel García Márquez, Gabriel García Márquez’s Formative Reading List: 24 Books That Shaped One of Humanity’s Greatest Writers

“Life is not what one lived, but what one remembers and how one remembers it in order to recount it.”


Louis C K, Live At The Comedy Store:

“Self love is a good thing, but self awareness is more important. You need to once in a while go ‘uh, I’m kind of an asshole’. You have to have that thought once in a while or you’re a psychopath.”



Robert X. Cringely, How To Fix IBM:

“History has shown that when a company trashes its quality, neglects its customers, and makes earnings its only priority – bad things happen. Over the last 50 years, the USA has lost many industries this way. If IBM does not get serious about quality its survival will be at risk.”


Kailash Satyarthi regarding his fight against child slavery and illiteracy in India:

“Satyarthi estimates that 60 million children in India, or 6 percent of the population, are forced into work. This, he believes, has nothing to do with parental poverty, illiteracy or ignorance. Above all, children are enslaved because employers benefit by getting their labour for free or for a pittance.”


The Jen Meyers Report, October 3 2014:

Americans may not like to talk about class divisions, but there is at least one, and it’s between those who never imagine not getting what they’ve been taught they deserve and those who know that no matter what they do, nothing is guaranteed.


Mental Illness Happy Hour -188, a “Happy Moment” message from a listener name Sherlock (1:47:25):

Don’t be afraid of (the) stigma (of mental illness) - fight it. The ignorance, denial and prejudice surrounding mental and addictive disorders kills people. It’s in the news almost daily.

The simplest way to fight it is to seek services. The next step is to be open about your own struggles. The next step is to advocate - do what you can.


Marc Maron from the Robin Williams interview:

Show business is “A community of bitter people aspiring to something, and they’re children because what they’re aspiring to is ridiculous.”


This is stolen from Arron Swartz’s quote blog:

“The devil has many forms, some designed to deceive the young, some designed to deceive the old and serious. If it is the devil that tempts the young to enjoy themselves, is it not, perhaps, the same personage that persuades the old to condemn their enjoyment? And is not condemnation perhaps merely a form of excitement appropriate to old age? And is it not, perhaps, a drug which - like opium - has to be taken in continually stronger doses to produce the desired effect? Is it not to be feared that, beginning with the wickedness of the cinema, we should be led step by step to condemn the opposite political party, dagoes, wops, Asiatics, and, in short, everybody except the fellow members of our club? And it is from just such condemnations, when widespread, that wars proceed. I have never heard of a war that proceeded from dance halls.”


Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me

“After binging for a decade, with money we don’t have, President Obama decided the only way out of the crisis is to spend almost a trillion dollars we don’t have either. This is like curing a hangover by buying a distillery. The Republicans don’t like it; they don’t like spending money on anything unless it blows up, like Iraq, or Merill Lynch.”