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On Wagon Inventory. Creative Selection. The White Darkness.

Luna // 11 Months // On Wagon Inventory

The rains have come hard this month, the fourth-wettest February on record. We’ve been trapped inside our house as the waters descend, scouring the streets and flooding the gutters. Then, just as quickly, the clouds part and the sun blazes forth.

These are the moments we live for. Out comes the wagon, into the wagon goes Luna, and off we go on a walk through our neighborhood. As always, Luna stands at the front, surveying her domain. She waves her scepter (today, a wool mushroom) and we glide down the sidewalk, past palm trees and stucco houses glowing in the late afternoon southern California sun.

As we’ve gone on more and more walks, more and more toys have ended up in her wagon like precious cargo. Here is the latest inventory:

One knitted mushroom of dull red yarn.

One rubber whale, hijacked from the bathtub.

One plastic dog, with movable arms stretched outward in permanent surprise.

One candy hamburger still wrapped in its crinkling plastic, bestowed by a nice vendor at the farmer's market.

One rubber giraffe, rendered with surprisingly lifelike detail.

The rains have made everything lush and green. Lawns that are normally scrubby and brown are blanketed in grass, palm trees drip with moisture, and flowers burst forth from gardens.

Luna is now a constant babbler, offering a running commentary as if she’s narrating the changing scenery. She points with her scepter at lavender blossoms and yapping dogs, some of which defer to her authority, sensing she’s the tiny captain of this ship.

The walks are now a ritual, a way to mark the passage of days. Months ago I walked with her strapped to my chest in a baby carrier. Then she moved to a stroller. Now, the wagon. What will be next?

Perhaps a bicycle? I imagine us pedaling these neighborhood streets, Luna, ringing the bell. The wagon may be too small someday.

But these thoughts are not, so to speak, of the present moment. For now, the wagon suits her perfectly. Looking at the forecast, it’s slated to rain again soon. Afterwards, when the sun is once again high in the sky, we will keep walking.

The route may change and the cargo may shift, but the ritual will continue. Keeping time, watching her grow.

What I Read

I’ve enjoyed reading behind-the-scenes accounts lately, and Creative Selection offers such a look into Apple’s software design process. Author Ken Kocienda, a former Apple engineer who helped build early iPhone software, details the constant interplay between inspiration, iteration, and thoughtful restraint required to produce Apple’s celebrated user experiences.

Kocienda uses his own experiences designing the iPhone and iPad keyboards to showcase how transformative design emerges not from a singular flash of genius, but rather a constant winnowing down of viable options to find the approach that feels just right. While the book at times veers into hagiography of Apple’s design culture under Jobs, it captures the clever compromises required to make the new feel natural.

A short but excellent read: The White Darkness. Writer David Grann tells the captivating true story of Henry Worsley, a decorated British special forces officer drawn to adventure and the frozen continent of the Antarctic.

Through parallel narratives of Worsley’s expeditions and the larger history of polar exploration, Grann explores what drives Antarctic obsessives. A fascinating psychological portrait of a man utterly captivated by romantic notions of heroism and destiny.

What I Watched

Nothing! This is likely my first week in many months in which I didn’t watch a single film. Life has been full and busy, and I can feel the once-nightly routine of watching a movie slipping away.

But that’s completely alright with me. I embrace each phase of this era equally.

That's all for now,

From the present moment,

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