2021 Recap

It’s Been A Year Already?

Every year goes by faster than I expect. I have huge plans for what I want to accomplish and what I want to try, but when reflecting it usually falls short. You build these ideas up that you’ll do X, and Y, and Z and feel accomplished, but X is always deeper than you thought, Y is impossible to do without expensive equipment, you find out that Z was all hype and that you thought you’d hate W so you didn’t even plan to try it, but it turns out W was pretty cool after all.


I read seven books spanning a total of 2,150 pages.

  1. Recursion by Blake Crouch
  2. Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo by Oscar Zeta Acosta
  3. The Stranger by Albert Camus
  4. Anxious People by Fredrik Backman
  5. Dark Matter by Blake Crouch
  6. Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro
  7. Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir

My favorite book this year was Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro. Klara, an artificial friend (an android for children), is brought home by Josie and taught what it means to be human for better or worse. Klara’s innocense of the world is apparent which requires the reader to imagine what it is like to see the world for the first time. What sort of conclusions would we draw if we had no prior knowledge or reference for what we see? Throughout their story together Klara destroys heavy machinery that is the the sole cause for a side effect of genetic engineering, praises the sun, sees a man and his dog come back from the dead, and learns that loving someone doesn’t have to mean being together for eternity. As we get older we have people enter and leave our lives and they leave marks. Those relationships, no matter the depth or breadth play a part in who we are and even though they may not be a part of our lives forever, they’ll always be with us. We have to cherish those relationships for what they taught us and reflect on the people who made us who we are.

Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo was a recommendation by a friend who was supposed to read it with me, but I’m fairly certain he instead decided that he would rather live the story. I can’t say I blame him. Best of luck Tyler. I’ve only hung out with you a handful of times, but if anyone can do it, I am sure it’s you.

Recursion, Dark Matter, and Project Hail Mary were great sci-fi reads. Project Hail Mary was a delight to read and I really enjoyed how the story attempted to make everything scientifically sound, at least to me.

I read Anxious People with my wife and we both thoroughly enjoyed it. Trying to give clues to where we were at in the story behind muffled laughs so that we didn’t ruin the story for one another was one of my favorite moments of the year. The story is a wonderful read, especially with a loved one. We also watched the Netflix adaptation and while we enjoyed it, the way the novel is written makes it difficult to translate to screen. Still worth a watch if you’re looking for something.

I’ve had a paperback version of The Stranger for years and while I always meant to read it, I never got around to reading it until this year. I am not sure how to describe this book. I had to really reflect on the story to understand what Camus was getting at and even now I am not sure. Overall a short read with a morose ending, but maybe Meursault is not wrong?


  • I started building a night-stand, but can’t seem to bring myself to finish it. I have to make the drawer, sand, and stain it then it’ll be done. My current excuse is it’s too cold outside to work on it. I have to finish this in the coming year for sure.
  • Air Quality Measuring / Graphing - I built out a little box that reads CO2, TVOC, PM1.0, PM2.5, PM10, temperature, and humidity. It then sends that info to a server I run in the basement and stores it all for some nice graphing. I still have to 3D print a nice little container for it all and clean up the wiring though. More coming soon on that.

Running / Biking

  • I logged a hilariously low 50 miles on my outdoor bike last year.
  • I put a measly 250 miles on my indoor bike.
  • I ran a slightly more respectable 484 miles.

My fastest 5k is at 23:16 and my fastest 10k is 55:53 so overall a marked improvement over last year. Still trying to get my 5k lower, but maybe I’ll start throwing in more distance runs. That puts me at 784 miles for the year. A bit short of where I wanted to be.


I was fortunate enough to travel to Maui in September and visit Haleakalā National Park.

View from the top of Haleakalā
View from the top of Haleakalā

Bread / Pizza / Pasta

I still eat and bake a lot of it. I am getting a bit better at making it, but there’s always room for improvement. I was gifted an Ooni Pizza Oven last year and a pasta roller which have been amazing to make. I really do wish I could grow my own wheat just to give it a try. Maybe one day.

My bread game is still decent.

Garlic and parsley bread with olive oil
Garlic and parsley bread with olive oil

My pizza game is getting better.

Pizza made in an Ooni Pizza Oven

What’s Next?

In the coming year I’m trying to refine my pizza dough, finally break that 22 minute 5k mark, and try to find somewhere to volunteer. I love where I live, even if I like to complain about winter, and I should give back somehow. Pizza Saturday’s at the local food bank?