The ‘Deep Slate: June 2016 Edition

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I’ve never dreaded writing a ‘Deep Slate more than this one. Why you ask? Because I’m going to publicly disagree with many of my close friends’ choices on on the two most controversial races in this election. If you do disagree with me (and I think many of my progressive friends will), I hope you’ll read and consider the reasoning behind my choices.

Regardless, GO VOTE!

‘deep

.ps: Let’s start a new tradition:#votingstickerselfie AFTER YOU VOTE: Take a pic with your voting sticker on your nose & hashtag it as #votingstickerselfie!

.pps If you…

  • like what you read, please do let me know! Also questions, criticisms, comments welcome!
  • you want to know where to vote, jump to the Extras below
  • you want to get an email when I post the next ‘Deep Slate, just email me!

WHAT IS THIS?:

Every San Francisco election cycle, I put out my “‘Deep Slate”: my endorsements for that election. This post is my slate for this election!

The format of this post is as follows:

  1. The LIST: the simple list of my endorsements for this election. 
  2. The DETAILS: the whys and wherefors of each endorsement. This is how I arrived at each position.
  3. My VALUES: a brief explanation of my values and sources, to help make sense of my opinions.
  4. Other Sources: a collection of other resources & ballot slates put together by friends or organizations that I value.
  5. Extras: If you want to know where to vote, or want to find older ‘Deep Slates….

Also note that a few days after the election, you can come back & check the RESULTS by clicking here.

THANKS:

Thanks, as always, to the number of folks who have asked me for my opinions. I know I say it every time but it is quite true: I really am honored by your interest.

And big props to my lovely wife, for proofreading this and also for being so supportive of all my meetings & involvements!

So without further preamble, let’s dive in!

Continue reading

‘Deep vs. Too Much ‘Deep

Chubby. I hate being chubby. And yet, that has more or less been the word for me for most of my adult life.

Sometimes the word is slightly kinder, sometimes slightly meaner: A neighborhood blog once described me as “jolly.” ACK. My relatives in India would often generously choose “healthy.” When trying to decide if I was attractive, I’d go with “robust.” My Dad, on the other hand, ever the voice of compassion, would go with “fat.” My scale, going off body mass index calculations, says “overweight” at best and “obese” at worst, and while that is a little ridiculous (and science agrees), you get the picture. Too Much ‘Deep is the norm more often than not. 

And then in February of this year, I had to coin a new phrase: I had hit ‘DEEP MAX, the most ‘Deep EVER RECORDED! 218 lbs! GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! 😱😭😵😲 GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!

For some perspective, I’m 5’ 11”, and in my book, 190 lbs is “Good”, anything less than 200 lbs is “OK”, and 205 lbs or over is “Oh lordy NO!” I would have given anything to be merely “chubby” again. Something had to be done, and yet I had little hope.

When it comes to my weight, I feel constantly mired in failure, and for good reason: my weight seems to only ever climb, and my efforts to combat this fact always seem to fail. Amidst the despair, I’m left in the crush of a desperate need to fix it and a certainty that nothing ever works. Yep, it sucks.

And yet today, 3 months after ‘Deep Max, I’m actually excited about my weight. WHAT?! Seriously, for me this is a big deal. I have found something that, at least for now, is working, and working amazingly well. And more importantly, I think it might work long term. And most importantly, it is more fun than it is hard. Whoa.

Weight DeepMax3


My Weight Since Last Summer
(from my Withings smart scale)

 

So, if you’re at all interested, read on. I think everything I’m doing should be applicable to most people, even if you’re not interested in the tech part1.

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The ‘Deep Slate: November 2015 Edition

DeepSlateCompact3

Note: if you don’t want to read my blather & just want to know my recommendations: Here’s just the LIST. But, the blather really is the best part, so you can understand what I think & decide how you may agree/disagree. But you should agree 🙂

[Ed. Note: One of the things I liked most about last year’s ‘DeepSlate (perhaps the best ever) was that I got it out early, which gave people time to get back to me with critiques of my choices. I was hoping to do the same this year – especially since this election has fewer items… but alas no. This has been one of the most stressful years I can remember (for a variety of reasons) and on top of it all we have a newborn baby! So needless to say I’m exhausted & WAAAAY behind the eightball on everything. I’m lucky to be able to post this before the election at the rate I’m going 🙂 I better get typing before I fall asleep! So….
GO VOTE!
‘deep
.ps If you like what you read, please do let me know! Also questions, criticisms, comments welcome!
.pps Every year, I get a smattering of “hey don’t forget to email me your slate” folks, some of who I forget to mail 🙁 So I’ve started an email list for the ‘DeepSlate so that I don’t forget these folks.  If you want me to put you on it, just let me know.  I promise I won’t spam you (less than 10 emails a year methinks).  Or you can always just check back on my blog.]
.pps: Let’s start a new tradition:#votingstickerselfie AFTER YOU VOTE: Take a pic with your voting sticker on your nose & hashtag it as #votingstickerselfie!

WHERE TO VOTE:
Before anything else, the most important thing: WHERE YOU CAN VOTE: You can find your polling place in SF HERE or for the rest of CA HERE.

ABOUT THIS SLATE: Every San Francisco election cycle, I put out my “‘Deep Slate”: my endorsements for that election. If you know who I am, you know how I skew, but regardless, I recommend you read the “MY VALUES” section below to understand where I’m coming from. THE LIST section is just the no-frills list of how I’ll be voting (for printing!) & THE DETAILS section is the longer explanation of how I arrived at each vote.

I believe I’ve been doing the ‘Deep Slate since sometime in the ‘90s. You can read all the ones I’ve saved by clicking here – it get’s a bit dicey because before 2012, they were email only (not blog posts), so I’ve posted the email versions I could find.

Thanks:

Thanks, as always, to the number of folks who have asked me for my opinions. I know I say it every time but it is quite true: I really am honored by your interest.
And big props to my lovely wife, for proofreading this and also for being so supportive of all my meetings & involvements!

Contents

The format of the slate is simple:

  1. THE LIST: the simple list of my endorsements for this election
  2. THE DETAILS: the whys and wherefors of each endorsement.
  3. MY VALUES: a brief explanation of my values and sources, to help make sense of my opinions.
  4. Other Sources: a collection of other resources & ballot slates put together by friends or organizations that I value.

Also note that a few days after the election, you can come back & check the RESULTS by clicking here.

Continue reading

Kabhi Kabhi Baby

I was thinking about what kind of culture my little girl would get. Mostly, I’m thankful she’ll be a San Franciscan – but it’s also important to establish some important basics*… 😀

Kabhi Kabhi Baby

I’m a bit sad that I’m not sure how much of the great Indian stuff I have to offer her and there is certainly some of the bad I don’t want to. There’s a lot of great American she’ll just get, but plenty of bad I won’t be able to stop. But luckily there is a lot of great San Franciscan for her to get – from composting, to caring about the world around her, to therapy, to slow food, to trying to make herself better, and feeling free to be whoever she is…

SUPER BONUS:Kimberly Conley will be speaking to her in Mandarin 🎉💥✨🎈😍

*For those who don’t know”Kabhi Kabhi” is one of those seminal Bollywood songs, one that probably marks you as Indian on some level. (In so far as I know what it means, as tenuous an Indian as I am…)

I’m not sure what an American equivalent would be – maybe something like “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” – but more recent and even more popular?

It is the music of my childhood. I learned to love it at home from Dad and Mom. Before I even knew what music was probably, and certainly before I knew what music would mean to me, this was becoming part of me.

We’re MOVING 30 Feet!

Folks –

Kimberly and I are MOVING! Next door. In early July. Basically because next door gives us a better layout for family & we’ll have extra childcare options…

We’ve prepared the handy FAQ below to help with any further questions you may have…

-‘deep + Kimberly!

A picture worth, well, a few hundred words.

A picture worth, well, a few hundred words.

D+K Moving FAQ

  1. What?
    We currently live in 937/939 Valencia (we live in 937, the top, & we rent out 939, the bottom). We’ll will be moving into 933/935, and will live in the top, 933 & rent out 935*.

  2. Why?
    Basically, our elderly next door neighbor is downsizing & moving to SoCal. His place is very similar to ours, a 2 unit 1880’s Victorian. Although boringly painted, it is completely vacant.

  3. The big reasons for us to move are:

    • The layout next door is better for a family, i.e. better bedroom location & it has a small back yard
    • The downstairs unit can be rented to Kimberly’s dad, Patrick. He will be looking to move in September & we’d love to have MORE childcare super-nearby to help! DOUBLE score.
  4. When?
    We’ll be moving into the top unit, 933 Valencia, sometime in July, details TBD based on various renovation projects we need to complete before then.

  5. What happens to the Deepistan National Parklet?

    Fear not for Trixie, she’ll be just fine.

  6. Will you make a bigger parklet?

    Hopefully some day! We will have to wait for all the dust to settle from all of the upgrades we’d like to do on the new place (& there will be a lot of dust!)

  7. What happens to your current place?
    We’ll start renting out our top floor unit at 937 Valencia ASAP (July!). We’ll need to make top dollar on it to have everything pencil out, but even more importantly we want to live next to people we like & like to hang out with. So yes, this could be YOU! If you’re interested in a two bedroom at current Mission rents (sorry), let us know & we’ll talk. If you know of of folks we’d like, who would be interested in an awesome 2BR, send ‘em our way. Also, did we mention it’s pet friendly?

    Our current tenants in 939 Valencia will still be living there just as before. They are good tenants and will be staying in their home of over 30 years just as always.

  8. What happens to the bottom unit of your new place?
    We have a lot of work to do in the downstairs unit over the summer, but after that, the plan is that family moves in – at least for a while. Kimberly’s dad & sister, Patrick & Megan, both will be moving out of their current building, so they’re movin’ in. Eventually, we may rent out one or both of those bedrooms too, if either Patrick or Megan only wants to stay a while…. But in the meantime it will be childcare/Conleypalooza 🙂

  9. But isn’t Kimberly pregnant?
    Um. Yes. Sanity is for the weak. Hopefully, we’ll be at least kinda settled in before Ducky is born. (Ducky = 🐥 = baby’s code name)

  10. *We just got the bottom renumbered to 935. Previously it had been 933A (which is just dumb).

Halloween 2014: The Ultimate Disco Ball!!! (?)

[Ed. Note: I delayed this post way too long, but I was busy & then recovering from too much Fall-crazy.  I hope you enjoy it nonetheless 🙂

  • For reference, here are my posts on the previous Disco Balls: 2010, 2007, 2005, 20011997.
  • This post contains a few shots from my two Flickr albums of the project, but there are more there if’n you’re interested – go to “the Making Of” or “The Best of” Albums on Flickr.
  • If you’re looking for an easier version of this costume to make, do checkout 2007’s version or 2010’s :-)]

I have been making Disco Ball costumes on & off for 17 years now (!) this might be the final chapter.

I don’t think it can get any discoballier!  Disco Ball 6.0 was… well. see for yourself:

Disco Ball 6.0 In Action

About a year or two ago, it seemed like every friend I had on Facebook decided to tell me about this woman, Natalina’s, bad-ass disco ball helmet that she posted on The Instructables.

And so, being interested in disco ball technology, I read her post & was amazed. She and her helmet were, in fact, bad-ass. She had taken disco ball costumery where I had dared not go: into making her helmet an actual disco ball.

Continue reading

The ‘Deep Slate: November 2014 Edition

Ed. Note: In a shocking turn of events, I’m going to get this November’s slate out well in ADVANCE. This might mean I’ve been replaced with a pod. Hmmmm…This also the most work I’ve put into a slate – I really hope you like it. (Also big props to my amazing wife for proofreading & putting up with my mental/physical/emotional absence this month!)

You can find all the online ‘Deep Slates here, but note that before 2013, I only sent them out via email.
Updates:

  • Nov 3: A friend sent me a good LA Times article about Prop 48.  I’ve reconsidering my tepid no & am going tepid yes – see below for details.
  • Nov 4.  My friend Kate McCarthy’s excellent voter guide is out & so I added that to the OTHER section.
  • Nov 5.  Added the new improved logo (better for Facebook) & added this link to the results (not final.)

DeepSlateCompact3

FOR NEWBIES: Every San Francisco election cycle, I put out my “‘Deep Slate”: my endorsements for that election. If you know who I am, you know how I skew, but regardless, I recommend you read the “MY VALUES” section below to understand where I’m coming from. THE LIST section is just the no-frills list of how I’ll be voting (for printing!) & THE DETAILS section is the longer explanation of how I arrived at each vote.

First, the most important thing: WHERE YOU CAN VOTE: You can find your polling place in SF HERE or for the rest of CA HERE.

Next, if you don’t want to read my blather & just want to know my recommendations: Here’s just the LIST. But, the blather really is the best part, so you can see what I think & how you may agree & disagree. But you should agree 🙂

Thanks, as always, to the number of folks who have asked me for my opinions. I know I say it every time but it is quite true: I really am honored by your interest.

The past two months has been fairly insane for me, mostly because of my political shenanigans: as president of the SF League of Conservation Voters (SFLCV), this ballot is a big deal, and I’ve been guiding our new board through the endorsements process, as well as hitting the streets for Yes on Props A & B and especially No on L; as an SF Bike Coalition board member, I’m busy with our hunt for a new ED; and at work, we’ve been putting out a big new release of our software. So yeah – CRAZY. And I still need to work on my Halloween costume! Eeek.

So without further preamble – let’s just get this all taken care of. My recommendations!

GO VOTE!
‘deep

.ps If you like what you read, please do let me know! Also questions, criticisms, comments welcome!

The format of this post is simple:

  1. The LIST: the simple list of my endorsements for this election
  2. The DETAILS: the whys and wherefors of each endorsement.
  3. My VALUES: a brief explanation of my values and sources, to help make sense of my opinions.
  4. Other Sources: a collection of other resources & ballot slates put together by friends or organizations that I value.

Continue reading

Why I Returned My Nest Protects

[Ed. Note:  What follows is part of a letter I wrote to contacts at Nest explaining my dissatisfaction with the Nest Protect smoke+CO alarms I bought.  I thought it would be useful for other people considering buying them.  I will note that the people at Nest contacted me quickly & were helpful in processing the return and explaining why the product functioned as it does.  That being said, though helpful, they could not help me.]

I have been a big fan of what you guys are doing at Nest, but I wanted to tell you why I’m returning my five Nest Protects.  I’ve spoken to your customer support staff & while they’ve been helpful, they can’t actually help me.
Sad nest

HOW I GOT HERE:

 
First some background, so you can understand how I got to this point. 
 
When the Nest Protect smoke alarm was announced, I was instantly curious because I really like my Nest thermostat.  I watched the video and my curiosity turned quickly into excitement because the video showed the Protect fixing all the frustrations I had with my smoke alarms and all the annoyance & risk those problems caused!  
 
At that moment our smoke alarms were sitting in a heap off in a corner, because we had disabled them so many times.  When I looked at them, I’d think “Ugh, that’s really bad. You’re risking a fire because of that heap.”  Then I went on with my life, but slightly more disconcertedly…

Continue reading

Kimberly’s 37th Birthday Skullduggery: 2nd Time’s the Charm

[Ed. Note: This is the big write up to the Skullduggery (“puzzle & activity hunt”) on 8/2/2014 that I put on for Kimberly’s 37th birthday. If you want to skip to just the clues and/or answers – jump to here. This is the second one I’ve done for Kimberly’s birthday – here is the write up of the first, from last year. NOTE: If you played and don’t want to read all this, at least make sure you skip to the video at the bottom – it’s awesome!]

Stumped

AdventureConleys! (this shot alone is everything I wanted out of this skullduggery!)
(courtesy of Keri Maijala)

POST-FUN THOUGHTS:

YAY! This year, I pulled it off! This year, my Skullduggery for Kimberly’s birthday was what I hoped: Big fun for Kimberly, big fun for the people who played, and big fun for me to make (albeit exhausting – again!).

I’m writing this a few days later, still basking in the post-creative-glow, that feeling you get when you have created something that you just really love. So, what was the biggest difference between this year and last? 

This time, I realized that there is more awesome in “less grand but really well made” than there is in “super grand but kinda janky”

Last year, I had much less sense of how hard it would be & also aimed to do much, much more. The result was far from what I hoped. This year, I knew exactly how hard it would be & aimed to do what I could. As it was, it was still a little more than I could sanely manage, but I pulled it off nonetheless. There is plenty of room for improvement, but this time it was still great: I had SO MUCH FUN & so did the birthday girl & most of the players!

I’m looking forward to doing another one already! 🙂 Next year, the challenge will be to do it without nearly killing myself (I have a plan!)…

Big THANKS to everyone who came out & played!
-‘deep

CLUES & ANSWERS:

Here is my write up explaining all the clues & their answers.

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The ‘Deep Slate: June 2014 Edition

FOLKS: I’m really sorry this is so late (TODAY is election day) & frankly I’m not even finished with this (I haven’t explained the positions below) – but it will be up before 6pm today I swear (& hopefully sooner!)

Gov: Jerry Brown Lt Gov: Gavin Newsom Sec State: Alex Padilla Controller: John A. Pérez Treasurer: John Chiang Att. Gen: Kamala Harris Ins. Comm: Dave Jones Board of Eq: Fiona Ma US Rep: Barry Hermanson / Nancy Pelosi State Assembly: David Campos Sup: Tom Torlakson Judge: Daniel Flores

Prop 41: Veterans Housing Bond: Yes Prop 42: Legislative Const. Amendment: Yes

Prop A: Earthquake Safety Bond: Yes Prop B: Voter Approvale for Waterfront Dev Height: NO