Post Mortem

Sometimes called a retrospective or autopsy, a post mortem is a means of looking back at an event or period of time, to determine what can be learned from it with an eye towards improving what doesn’t work, and keeping what does.

So, here’s how 2015 looked for me and my family — body, heart, mind, and soul.

Body / Personal / Family

There was a lot of loss this year. I lost my job, our home was robbed (twice!), we lost five(!) cars. Thanks to the robberies, our home insurance company ended their coverage, even though they didn’t pay us anything for either robbery, and we bought and installed a hidden camera motion-detecting system after the second robbery (which was a week after the first).  We ended up finding insurance through Liberty Mutual at an even better rate than we were getting.

To make the thefts even more annoying, they took nearly all of our medications, which we had just refilled three-month supplies of. And since my health care coverage had just ended (thanks to losing my job), the day that we lost all those medicines, we had to pay for a month of COBRA just to be able to get those medicines refilled.

Linda nearly died in an emergency room visit when they injected her with a substance that she was allergic to. So instead of a five-hour visit, it turned into a five-day stay in ICU and recovery. We checked with an attorney who said we didn’t have enough proof of wrongdoing/incompetence to do anything.

I had a “UEO”, an unidentified encephalic occurrence. Basically, a stroke that wasn’t a stroke. My brain got all weird and slow, my limbs went numb and tingly, and my speech became less intelligible. The U part of UEO means that the neurologist couldn’t find the cause, and by the time (seven weeks later) that I saw him, the symptoms were all gone.

Heart / Emotional / Arts

Boy, there were plenty of funerals this year. My aunt Dale passed away, and we helped her family with the estate. My friends Steve Goldberg, Ryan Kemp, Elizabeth Burnley, Debi Magnes, and Darren Routt passed away. Plus a few celebrities I looked up to, like Roddy Piper and Mick Lynch.

I attended the Sing-Off at the Louisville Palace, the Nutcracker Suite at KY Center for the Arts (with my niece dancing on stage!), the Real Inspector Hound (a play-within-a-play), Superman: the Musical, the Connect|Disconnect art exhibit, Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me, The Tick!, Project KempProv, the Theater Alliance of Louisville meeting, Market of Mischief with Louis-Villainz.

I cut back on the sci-fi / comic / literary shows that I attend, but this year I still went to ConGlomeration, Mo*Con, WonderFest, Origins Game Fair, GenCon, Imaginarium, and the Louisville Comic Con.

Mind / Technical / Career

I started a new job at Baptist Health. There were several irons in the fire, and it was wonderful to be able to choose among some good offers (tech exec at a startup, budding data scientist at a large insurance company, or data master at a chain of hospitals). Baptist is a great company to work for. I get to do cool stuff with great people, and learn a lot as I go.

I launched TechFest Louisville! That’s a post for another time.

I spoke at a lot of conferences. I spoke at CodepaLOUsa, the Louisville Agile Forum, SQL Saturdays in Nashville, Chattanooga, Atlanta, Columbus, Indianapolis, and Louisville, and Dress for Success.

I was there for many other big events, like VEX Worlds (the worldwide championship of robotic competitions) and the opening of Chattanooga’s TechTown (an amazing makerspace/creative studio for kids).

I attended gobs of other events, like half a dozen Open Coffees, two Startup Weekends, Gear-UpS#*! I Wish I Knew, the Tech Security Conference, two Non-Profit Toolbox conferences, the SBIR/STTR Road Show, the IoT Developer’s Workshop, the How-To Festival, MapTime, the CIO Symposium, the JDRF Diabetes Summit, GeoEd 15, XlerateHealth Demo Day, Mini-Maker Faire, DerbyCon, World Trade Day, TALK‘s tour of the BioAssemblyBot, the Vogt Awards, the Civic Data Alliance party, the Louisville Digital Association party, and TALK’s panel on EMV and retail tech.

Soul / Spiritual

I taught several classes at Southeast Christian, I preached at Bible Abridged: the Complete Word of God in 90 MinutesConGlomeration, Imaginarium, and the Louisville Comic Con. I helped the Grave Robbers ministry (an outreach to goths and punks) at Ichthus Festival, and met a variety of ministries at the Global Missions Health Conference.

The Year in Photos

Prosthetic Fist-Bump TechTown Farkin' TechFest TechFest Gadgetry TechFest Kickoff TechFest Fun SQL Saturday Atlanta Mini-Me RIP Ryan Kemp Beth Cannon Mike Stackpole Buddy Christ GenCon Church Service GenCon Booth