259: Restoration with Patrick Rhone

This week’s guest is Patrick Rhone, writer, blogger, technology consultant, mental health advocate and home restoration enthusiast. He joins Brett to talk mental health, home restoration, and some of his favorite tools.

Upstart is the fast and easy way to pay off your debt with a personal loan –– all online. Visit Upstart.com/Systematic to get your fast approval with up-front rates.

PDFpen is the ultimate tool for working with PDFs on Mac, iPad and iPhone. Learn more about PDFpen and PDFpenPro at smilesoftware.com.

Top 3 Picks

  1. Keychron K2
  2. Ugmonk Analog
  3. Area X: The Southern Reach Trilogy

Join the Community

See you on Discord!


You’re downloading today’s show from CacheFly’s network

BackBeat Media Podcast Network

Check out more episodes at systematicpod.com and subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcasting app. Find Brett as @ttscoff on all social media platforms, and follow Systematic at @systmcast on Twitter.


Patrick and Brett

Brett: [00:00:00] [00:00:00]

[00:00:07] This week’s episode is brought to you by PDF pen and upstart.com. My guest this week is Patrick Rhone. It’s been, uh, since about 2016, since you’ve been on, what are, you introduce yourself these days?

[00:00:26] Patrick: [00:00:26] Um, well, I guess I’m still a writer. Um, I am still a blogger. I am still a technology consultant. Uh, I am, uh, still, uh, very, uh, deeply involved in, um, um, mental health as a, uh, as a passion, um, and a, and an advocate and, uh, and a, um, you know, mental illness, survivor myself. Um, and, uh, I [00:01:00] also, uh, found on now and the home restoration game, uh, Where, where, uh, I, uh, my wife and I have long been an interest in property ownership and whatnot, but now we are actively like, like looking for properties to purchase and to fix up and to themsel.

[00:01:26] But one at a time, at least I’m trying to hold her.

[00:01:32] Brett: [00:01:32] Yeah, well, uh, you have, uh, you have, you’ve journaled your, uh, your kind of, uh, progress through at least one home. Now, how many, how many homes have you done?

[00:01:43] Patrick: [00:01:43] So this really started back in 2011. We bought a house for $7,200.

[00:01:54] Brett: [00:01:54] Wow.

[00:01:55] Patrick: [00:01:55] Um, and that was all on closing costs and everything, $7,200. [00:02:00] Um, and, but it was a category, two vacant building. I E what that means is, uh, you know, the, the system, the city had listed it as a vacant building, and there are certain things that had to be done within a certain period of time in order to purchase this property.

[00:02:19] Um, you had to pledge to get these things done in that period of time. Um, and, uh, uh, Kind of had to be done, you know? Well, um, yeah, you know, it was going to be inspected and the, he was going to be watching and that sort of thing. Um, and so, uh, and so yeah, $7,200 and we, the nice thing about buying a home that needs a lot of work, um, is that, uh, especially for very little money is that you can kind of.

[00:02:54] Learn how to do a lot of this stuff by diving in and trying it, bring it up [00:03:00] and trying again, because you know, what do you have to lose? It’s only somebody $200. So if you make a $500 mistake, well, you know, Hey, you’re, you’re still way ahead. Um, Hmm. So, uh, and so, yeah, we, uh, we still own that house. Uh, it is currently, uh, the one that my, the one my dad lives in, um, Uh, and we kind of bought it with that in mind with the idea that, Hey, one of our parents may need, may need some help, you know, coming up, they’re not getting any younger and you know, who knows they might need a place to be and, you know, and, uh, at an affordable price or maybe even no price at all.

[00:03:44] And we may need to put them up somewhere and we’d rather not have them live with us. Uh, so yeah, we kind of bought it without purpose in mind, but we live in an 1886, a Victorian home. And [00:04:00] so, uh, that my wife purchased in 1993 as a HUD home. Um, And, uh, and so once again, uh, it was in a major disrepair. Got it.

[00:04:12] Very cheap. Uh, she, and, uh, and Mr. Gladhill number one, uh, put a lot of time into it, fixing it up, and then, uh, they divorced. And then when I came into the scene, uh, you know, we continued on projects around here.

[00:04:27] Brett: [00:04:27] So like I’ve watched you like gut, uh, some of these homes that you’ve worked on, have you done the same to your own home?

[00:04:35] Patrick: [00:04:35] uh, well, I mean, certainly two rooms, uh, in, in my, in the home and, and really with, with the, the one I’m working on now, you know, we’re, we’re gutting rooms, right. That need to be the need to be gutted. Um, you know, but there, and the nice thing about the house we’re doing now is that there’s only really.

[00:04:59] Really [00:05:00] three of those rooms that really need that kind of gutting the rest of everything else is pretty. Okay. And it’s going to be mostly, yeah, mostly kind of clean up and cosmetic stuff, but, um, but certainly with the, with the new one. Um, but, but yeah, certainly in this one, um, the room that is currently our library, um, had, uh, You know, the plaster literally falling off the walls.

[00:05:26] And it was, I mean, it was, it was pretty bad, you know? Um, and, uh, same with, uh, what is currently, um, are mine and my wife’s bedroom, similar sort of thing. I mean, it was, you know, cracked, plaster, everything everywhere and, you know, just the original, the pine floors, um, because it was not, it was not an unusual, um, cost saving measure in Victorian times to, um, uh, put a fair bit of [00:06:00] money into the public spaces in the home.

[00:06:03] I E the first floor, um, you know, and the dining room and the living room of the parlor and that sort of thing. Um, and then not put as much money into the second floor. And the non-public spaces. Um, and so, uh, it was not unusual. Uh, we’d like to think, Oh, they, you know, had these beautiful hardwood floors throughout not, was not the case with a lot of Victorian homes.

[00:06:28] Those nice floors on the second floor were they usually added later. Oh, and, uh, originally we’re just a, um, um, pine or, or, or, um, or Alder or Poplar. Poplar was very, um, uh, very popular choice, um, for, uh, for floors. And it was just kind of standard plank flooring that then they would put, um, um, a four cloth over, um, which was, um, basically think of it like, um, like carpeting, except it [00:07:00] was, it’s kind of the mid point between carpeting and a rug is essentially a rug that, um, that you tack down to the floor.

[00:07:09] Um, so, um, it would take up the whole, the whole room, the whole space, but it would just be tacked down, uh, along the edges. And it would usually

[00:07:20] Brett: [00:07:20] opposed to glued.

[00:07:21] Patrick: [00:07:21] As opposed to glued. Yes. Um, uh, and, and that’s usually what you would find on the second floor of many middle-class Victorian homes. Um, and that’s your history lesson for the day?

[00:07:35] Brett: [00:07:35] I got it.

[00:07:36] Patrick: [00:07:36] benefit from the fact that my wife’s master’s degree is in historic preservation. So that’s how I

[00:07:41] Brett: [00:07:41] That does help. I got to ask about this powder room. You posted a picture of a three foot by 10 foot room where the toilet was positioned on the long wall. So you basically, you had like a foot, it was like being on an airplane.

[00:07:57] Patrick: [00:07:57] Yes. Where you literally like [00:08:00] walk in and like you couldn’t close the door, like behind you, like, as you would, like, you had to walk in step to the side, close the door and then use the toilet. Otherwise you just used it with the door open. Yeah. That one.

[00:08:17] Brett: [00:08:17] did you fix that?

[00:08:18] Patrick: [00:08:18] Um, well, we’re on, we’re on the road to fixing that.

[00:08:22] Um, yeah. Yeah. We’re going to move it down towards, towards the, uh, towards the end of that room. But, but that also speaks to a lot of the progressions that have happened. Um, and that, that is part of a house’s history too, right? Is, is those sorts of changes. And so, um, from what we can tell that room used to be part of where the kitchen was originally and where the door to the kitchen was originally, um, is actually on the other side of the, you know, the far short wall of that, of [00:09:00] that room and has been turned into a built-in in the dining room.

[00:09:05] But that built in didn’t use to be there used to be a door into that room, which was the kitchen. Um, oftentimes kitchens in Victorians homes were relatively small. Um, you know, it wasn’t like today where, Oh, you know, I need all this room and counter space and open concept and all of this other stuff, you know, I mean, it was a utilitarian room.

[00:09:27] It was for one thing. And that was for your mate to cook, you know, and quite frankly, you know, you, weren’t gonna make it very nice because that’s your maids, you know, your, your maid doesn’t care, you know, she’s coming in and she’s cooking. Um, and so, uh, And so yeah, uh, over time, uh, and changes the kitchen, moved to a different location that, that, what is now that powder room has I call it, uh, was probably a pantry for awhile.

[00:09:57] Uh, after that, after it got closed off [00:10:00] and only later in life, probably sometime from what I can guess in the seventies, 1970s, it got turned into a bathroom.

[00:10:08] Brett: [00:10:08] Huh. So you’ve been, uh, I think of you as a tools guy, even if you have kind of roots in, in minimalism, but you’re very opinionated about your tools and you’ve been, you’ve been documenting these, uh, these homes and these restorations. What tools have you been using to document.

[00:10:29] Patrick: [00:10:29] Um, well, uh, you know, besides keeping, um, keeping the blog, um, I I’m keeping the blog on my progress there for a very specific reason, which I’m going to get to. Um, but I’ve been using micro.blog for that. Um, for those that aren’t familiar with it, microdot blog is actually kind of hard to describe, uh, take a take, take a blogging system, tie it [00:11:00] together with a social network.

[00:11:02] And you start to get an idea of kind of what microdot blog is. Um, micro.blog is a excellent, uh, way to post to a blog, especially kind of short form and medium form posts, um, uh, to a blog. And they will happily host your blog, but it also works with WordPress, uh, as well. So you can host your own WordPress blog and kind of tie it into microdot blog, but then there’s kind of this social network aspect to it too, where they’re very Twitter, like kind of experience, except for, um, your, your posts to that social network are actually posts to your blog as well.

[00:11:44] If that makes sense, not the replies, but the, but the original posts or posts to your blog. And so I like to think of it as like a, you know, at least in my case where. Where, um, you know, in some instances, you [00:12:00] know, cause I have two micro microdot blog things, uh, I’ve got my main blog, which is Patrick rhone.net, but then I’ve, and that is on WordPress.

[00:12:08] Um, and then I’ve got a woe to wow, which is my, the blog I’ve been keeping for the homeless ration stuff and that’s actually hosted on microblog. So I get to see and try both experiences. And the thing I like about it is just like, you get to have comments and conversation around the things that you post, except you don’t have to host your own comments system and deal with all the spam, uh, which is fantastic.

[00:12:32] Um, so, uh, uh, if you go to woe to, wow, uh, w H O T O w O w um, that is hosted on microblog. Um, I’m using, uh, if this, then that, um, you know, a little free service that can type one thing to another thing. Um, as long as it’s using a flexible open format or API for doing so, [00:13:00] um, to pipe, all of those posts, I post the water wow.

[00:13:06] Into a journal in my day, one application day, one being a journaling piece of journaling software. Um, but what I love about day one, amongst the many things I love about day one, it’s just a really elegant, really beautifully designed app, um, uh, that you can easily pipe things into using if this then that or other ways to, um, is that it also has a feature built in where you can print.

[00:13:42] A book out of it. And so I use this in a couple of ways, but I’m just going to describe the way in which I intend to use it for this,

[00:13:56] those posts about the Hague house, which is what I call that [00:14:00] project. Cause it’s on hag Avenue, St. Paul, um, all of the posts about the Hague house go into his journal in my day one called hay house. And when I am done with the project, um, and we’re ready to put the house on the market, I’m going to print off three books, um, of that journal.

[00:14:25] Uh, one of them is going to be for me, you know, for my own memories and safe keeping and you know, just a record of my life because so much of my life right now, so many hours of my, of my days are actually being poured into, um, rehabbing this house. Um, number two, I’m going to print off a copy for my friend, Jason, who I’ve hired to help me with a lot of the stuff with this house, because well, you know, picking up a 12 foot green treated two by eights by yourself, uh, is, is isn’t no joke.

[00:14:58] And so you actually have to have [00:15:00] somebody else on hand to help you with a lot of this stuff. So I’m going print off copy from him. Cause he’s, he’s been a tremendous help, but I’m also gonna print off a copy to go with the house. And I’m going to make clear to the, to the new owners that, that, that copies for the house.

[00:15:18] Um, so that even if they don’t keep the house, don’t live it for the rest of your life, which I really hope they do. Um, and I’m really working hard to make it the sort of place that someone could see themselves in forever, um, that when they go to sell it, they will pass that book along with the house so that people can see.

[00:15:40] Basically the before and after. Sure. But also I’m kind of doing a fairly good job of documenting, like here’s how we’ve done the put the sub Florian in the case kitchen. And here’s we had to, you know, use four jacks to provide stability [00:16:00] underneath this section of floor. So it wasn’t so squishy because it was, it was beginning to dip and then we had to cut custom shims to go underneath the floorboards and that other people may have just like, I don’t know, patch it up with just junk, you know, that we actually worked hard, uh, to, to get, uh, you know, to, to make it really nice and to do it right.

[00:16:24] And to do it in a way that makes sense. Right. Um, so that, you know, Hey, they want to make a change down the road. They want to like, you know, they can like, even if they don’t do the work themselves, they can show the people they hired and say, okay, this is, this is how, how the floor is constructed, you know?

[00:16:44] Oh, you know, here’s, here’s where all the floor joists are in the mudroom. They are exactly 16 on centered, but doubled up in these, in these stress areas that are going to be under the washer and dryer.

[00:16:55] Brett: [00:16:55] So that no one has experiences like you’ve had, as you pull off layers of [00:17:00] poorly laid flooring.

[00:17:01] Patrick: [00:17:01] Right. Or, you know, or, or, or things that have kind of been randomly put in, or just kind of like, you know, patch jobs that were right for like fixing the problem right then and there, but weren’t really like a real fix. Right. Um, Uh, weren’t, weren’t a long lasting fix are weren’t and weren’t intended to be so right.

[00:17:22] Um, whereas the work I’m doing, you know, this is an 1890 house. Um, I have no doubt in my mind that a hundred years from now, every single thing that I’ve done will be there just as good as it is today because I’m too busy. I’m doing it right. I’m doing it the way it should be done.

[00:17:45] Brett: [00:17:45] Printing these books from a, uh, from a digital journal. Uh, you are, you are printing hard copy books, which it can seem like a novel idea, but you have opinions that go beyond just these books when it comes to, uh, to [00:18:00] digital versus paper.

[00:18:01] Patrick: [00:18:01] Yeah. That is, that is, um, digital is, is, is, uh, is not lasting. Um, and, and I could pull up countless examples of that countless of, of formats that are no longer, no longer supported. And can’t be read by anything. I dare you. Uh, any long-time Mac user to go dig up an old Claris work file and try to open it with pages will not work. We used to work with Apple works, but it does not work with, uh, does not work with pages, right? You used to work with pages, uh, Oh nine, I believe, but it does not work with the current version of pages. Right. Um, and so, uh, these digital formats that we save things in our finite about the only, the only one we can count on that will likely last far into the future.

[00:18:54] And that’s largely because well, pretty much the internet and is built on it, uh, [00:19:00] is, um, text. Um, you know, and so I suppose if you really want something to last digitally, if you’re not using plain text, as far as I’m concerned, you don’t care enough. Um, and so, um, but if you really even care more than that, if you care about the idea that, um, you know, that maybe you want something that lasts for a thousand years or 2000 years, or maybe even 10,000 years, well, 10,000 years, you probably want to, you know, save this stuff on like a cave wall,

[00:19:34] Brett: [00:19:34] Right. Yeah. Carved in stone.

[00:19:37] Patrick: [00:19:37] carved in stone somewhere, right.

[00:19:38] But at least for a thousand years, you can guarantee, um, with a high degree of certainty that paper properly preserved and properly stored will last that long. And we know this, we have, we have evidence of this. And, and, and [00:20:00] what we do, I have any evidence just because it hasn’t been around as long that digital will last as long.

[00:20:07] But what we know from, from even recent experience is that it won’t, it can’t, it’s not designed to.

[00:20:14] Brett: [00:20:14] There’s like, to me, there’s a delineation between the, I can’t think of anything I’ve written that I care to see in a hundred years. And for me, I, I don’t put a lot of stock in what I write for me. Most of what I write is spur of the moment. Note-taking things I want to remember for us for a finite period of time.

[00:20:35] And it’s more important to me to be able to search and rapidly use that than it is to preserve it. So what’s the, what’s the delineation for you between what is a truly useful in a digital format and what should be preserved?

[00:20:52] Patrick: [00:20:52] Um, I guess for me, um, it’s, it’s history, you know, things I write [00:21:00] in my journal or in my, in my daily log, I keep both. Um, and, uh, just for, uh, so people understand the journalists for thoughts and feelings that daily log is for, you know, action and things I did. Right. Um, and so that’s kinda how I delineate the two and eh, sure.

[00:21:19] These things, you, you may not think are valuable or important, but I don’t know, you know, the way I look at it is that that’s not for me, for me to really decide that’s for whoever comes a hundred years from now to decide whether this was important to keep or not. Right.

[00:21:39] Brett: [00:21:39] a lot of what historians dig up, probably wasn’t written with the intention of historian, sticking it up.

[00:21:45] Patrick: [00:21:45] Nope, not at all. And a good example of this is I, um, happened to have, um, uh, a copy of the letter, um, that [00:22:00] was written by my great great uncle too. My great, no, I’m sorry. My great, great uncle to my great-grandfather, if that makes sense. Um, uh, and it basically says, uh, Hey Pat, by the way, uh, I am the sixth Patrick oatmeal Roan in the line.

[00:22:29] Um, Uh, you know, and so he was Pat too, you know, Hey Pat, I know that you probably have heard some of this stuff in bits and pieces around family reunions and whatnot, but I thought it important to sit down and to write this in a letter to you and proceeds to tell the history of that line of my family, going all the way back [00:23:00] to slavery, to our arrival in bondage in this country, I’m black, by the way, uh, to, to their present day.

[00:23:12] And it’s absolutely fantastic. And it’s rich with detail and information. Um, my, my great, great uncle was, uh, was a newspaper man who was a journalist. And so he was a really, really good writer and knew how to write things away. That was, uh, that was both descriptive and distinct or, uh, and, and, you know, and in short, right, you can put, put a lot of information to a short amount of space because that’s what he did for a job.

[00:23:39] Um, and, uh, and so it’s great, but there are, there are certain things in there that raise as many questions as they do, um, answers. So he put down, um, in one case it was talking about relatives and, and who gave birth to who and, and, uh, [00:24:00] you know, he was like, you know, and Mary was the, was the father of John Sally, Sue, Rick, and.

[00:24:08] Brett: [00:24:08] there are entire books of the Bible like that.

[00:24:10] Patrick: [00:24:10] Right, right. And the Rastas blogger, blah, blah, blah. And I’m like, wait, what harassed us? Like, wait, you have all of these normal names. And then there was a kid called Erastus like, I want to know more about Erastus, but what he goes on to say, like, he goes on to explain what all of those people did and then he gets to Rass.

[00:24:37] He’s like, and I’m sure you know, all about around that was just like mother Fricker. I’ll get you do that to me because he didn’t think that was important. Right. Because he figured, Hey, Pat knows this. You know, I don’t need to get into the details about arrest us and arrest us or our [00:25:00] long time, you know, besides being cousins, they, they hang out all the time.

[00:25:03] They’re good friends. They drink beers the whole nine yards. Right. But they like. Like, you know, to him that was not important as it were. Um, and, and to, to me, it’s extremely important. I want to know more, you know, I can’t tell you how, how much, uh, luckily it’s been, you know, it’s fairly easy to dig up information about some black person with the first name, arrest us.

[00:25:32] Brett: [00:25:32] Yeah.

[00:25:32] Patrick: [00:25:32] So just throw that out there. So, yeah, I haven’t had necessarily any trouble finding out all about harasses, but you get what I’m saying, right. It wasn’t, you know, that, that we, we don’t decide what’s important.

[00:25:47] Brett: [00:25:47] I will say I was, I just got a new, a new gig, uh, like a job, easy job. And I was looking for a, uh, a birth certificate so that I could get [00:26:00] through the background checks. And I stumbled, I didn’t find the birth certificate, but I did find, uh, uh, one of my good friends in the late nineties. Uh, we had gone through addiction and recovery and everything together, and he had sent me a picture.

[00:26:18] He was a photographer. You had sent me a picture along with a photocopied page from his personal journal. That was just about a moment in time when I had shown up when, when he, when he really needed me and how that made him feel. And it was like, I had totally forgotten this ever happened, but finding that page.

[00:26:38] Patrick: [00:26:38] yeah.

[00:26:39] Brett: [00:26:39] It was, it was deeply meaningful and I was really happy and I wouldn’t, I never would have that if that was in a Facebook post or something, it would be long gone.

[00:26:49] Patrick: [00:26:49] Right, exactly.

[00:26:50] Brett: [00:26:50] see the value.

[00:26:51] Patrick: [00:26:51] Yeah. And I think too, um, You know, this really changes as you get older. Right. You know, I think [00:27:00] when I was 20 or 30, I would have asked the same question. Like, what’s like, what’s the big deal, like really? Is that really important? But now that I’m 53, you know, and thinking a little bit differently about things and also looking back at my own legacy and also, you know, with houses and being married to somebody who is, you know, deeply involved in and, and, you know, historical preservation and things like that.

[00:27:24] I think a lot about this stuff. I think a whole lot about this stuff. Cause I’m dealing with it every day. I’m dealing with it. You know, I I’m, I’m dealing with it with the house where every time I, I got a room, I’m just like, well, why did they do it that way? Like there must’ve been a good reason cause that is completely messed up.

[00:27:43] But, but maybe there’s a good reason for doing it that I can’t just assume that it was just stupidity, you know that, Oh, it’s because of this or, Oh, they couldn’t do this. And so they had to do that. Right. Um, and [00:28:00] so, and so, yeah, I think, I think that’s part of it. Right. But we, you know, we, what matters, you know, I th I think.

[00:28:13] To me and to, and to us in general, if you really care about this stuff, um, the, the main reason that you preserve it in a way that you can always kind of get to it and access it, um, is because, um, because it is everything else is just so fleeting and so unreliable. And so, uh, undependable, you know,

[00:28:40] Brett: [00:28:40] Great, uh, this, this great hack. Where people were writing notes about room renovations on the back of switch plates. So like the colors they use for the wall, why they chose a certain types of flooring and leaving it, like in this place, that in the future [00:29:00] was very likely to be discovered even by themselves, that kind of, that kind of note taking makes sense to me.

[00:29:07] Patrick: [00:29:07] Oh, yeah. Yeah, totally. I mean, I’m, I’m, uh, uh, being very careful to put, um, uh, keep track of where the, uh, where the studs are, um, in, in a wall. Um, and especially in any wall that I didn’t build because the, it, because a lot of times in an old house, um, Yeah, certainly put in evenly. I either they’re not 1216 on center or 18 on center or 12 on center, which is kind of standard depending upon, depending upon what you’re dealing with.

[00:29:50] Right. Um, and, and so you can’t just walk into an old home and assume that you can find the stud [00:30:00] furthermore, um, because this they’re not using dry wall, they weren’t using screws because this plaster on laugh that laugh was, uh, is nailed, you know, in, with fairly small nails. Um, and so even stud finders, oftentimes don’t work because you have this other layer of wall in the way.

[00:30:23] Of laugh in the way. And then you have plaster on top of that. So you can’t even necessarily use a stud finder and guarantee. You’re gonna, you’re gonna find a stud when you want to go to hang out heavy picture or, or hang that new cabinet. Um, and so what my plan is is to, um, actually leave a discreet little Mark, um, uh, on the, uh, kind of hard to explain, but there will be a discreet Mark between the countertop and the tile as to where [00:31:00] the studs are in the kitchen. So you so you’ll know.

[00:31:06] Brett: [00:31:06] Nice. So I’m going to take our first sponsor break here.

[00:31:11] Sponsor: UpstartBrett – sponsors: [00:31:11] Are you carrying a credit card balance month after month? You’re not the only one high interest rates make it hard to pay off your debt, but upstart can help join thousands of happy borrowers who made that final payment absurd, the fast and easy way to pay off your debt with a personal loan all online, whether it’s paying off credit cards, consolidating high interests, that or funding personal expenses.

[00:31:33] Over half a million people have used upsert to get a simple fixed monthly payment. Unlike other lenders upsert looks at more than just your credit score, like your income and employment history. This means they can offer smarter rates with trusted partners with a five minute online rate check. You can see your rate up front for loans between 1000 and $50,000.

[00:31:56] You can receive funds as fast as one business day after accepting your loan. [00:32:00] Find out how upstart can lower your monthly payments today when you go to upstart.com/systematic that’s upstart.com/systematic, don’t forget to use my URL and let them know. I sent you loan amounts will be determined based on your credit income and certain other information provided in your loan application.

[00:32:19] It’s just head to upstart.com/systematic.

[00:32:24] Brett: [00:32:24] I do feel like there’s. A a, a poetic, uh, transition to be made here from, uh, from home improvement into mental health. But, uh, last time, last time we talked was a, it was a rough year of 2016, which, uh, in retrospect actually seems a little quaint, uh, to, to consider that, to consider that, uh, the, uh, the, the low point in, in our history.

[00:32:51] And we had both had some rough personal stuff and, uh, some tragedy even, how have things been [00:33:00] since then is 20, 20 and 2021, uh, worse or better?

[00:33:07] Patrick: [00:33:07] Well, I, you know, I don’t know that it is an, an either or competition or anything like that. I would say it’s just different, you know? Um, that, yeah, 2016 was rough. Not just because of, you know, what was going on politically and whatnot. But also just from a, um, you know, like you said, a personal standpoint, we, we both have a lot going on.

[00:33:31] Um, but, uh, you know, I especially had some really rough stuff going on. I’m not going to rehash it here. Um, if anyone wants to listen to that hour and a half podcasts that we did on that, I’m sure you’ll link to it in the show notes or whatnot. Um, easy to find, um, and, uh, B be warned it’s, it’s full of profanity and it is a really, really dark, um, that’s it.

[00:34:00] [00:34:00] Um, you know, uh, all, all turned out as well as could be expected with, with that whole situation. So, I mean, I’m not going to get into updating, you know, 2020 is kind of been weird, right? Because not only have we’d been dealing with the pandemic, but you know, you and I, Brett living in, we both live in Minnesota and, you know, as I’m sure the world, many listeners know Minnesota has been going through some particularly rough times around, uh, policing, um, and the death of George Floyd and now, uh, many others, uh, and, uh, the kind of social unrest, uh, that has, uh, cost around our, our cities.

[00:34:44] And, you know, certainly it’s not like, Oh my God, it’s all burning in this chaos here or whatnot, but, you know, Hey, there have been moments of that. Um, and, uh, uh, you know, and. Yeah. You know, that’s been rough on [00:35:00] top of all of the, all the pandemic stuff. And what’s, I think especially kind of rough for me and something I’ve been kind of grappling with the last several days is, you know, we should be feeling so much hope, right.

[00:35:20] Enjoy. I mean, I’ve gotten my two shots, so I’m fully vaccinated. My wife has, um, I don’t know where you’re at with it, but you know, people are out there. They’re getting vaccinated there. You know, that that’s hopeful. That’s, that’s promising, you know, restaurants are opening up and even though our numbers aren’t perfect yet, you know, I mean, the number of the number of folks that are vaccinated is just increasing exponentially every single day.

[00:35:49] Um, and, and, uh, that should be good. Um, there was a guilty verdict in the, uh, in the. The their Shovan, uh, trial, um, uh, [00:36:00] three of them, three guilty verdicts. Yes. Um, which, you know, we should be celebrating and that’s fantastic because he really did get what he deserved. Um, and you know, we, even, if, even if you’re, you know, pro police and blue lives matter or whatever, um, that was one of your bad apples.

[00:36:17] And the reason that his fellow caps threw him under the bus so quickly and so easily is because they hated him too. He has a long history of, of, of, of being a bad guy. Um, and so even if you support the police, you want guys like that gone. Okay. And you want them to get what they deserve. Um, so, uh, all of this is great.

[00:36:41] Yeah. Right. We should be feeling fantastic, but gosh, I’m not, I’m not, I’m still on edge. I still feel like just getting started every day is kind of a, kind of a [00:37:00] struggle. Um, and, and quite frankly, having this real kind of physical work to do has been a blessing has been a godsend because, you know, unlike everything else, like there is like, Oh, this was broken.

[00:37:16] Now it is not like it’s a binary. Right. You know, and you, and you can point to it and you say, I did that. I fixed, I fixed that. And I feel good about that. Right. And, and, but you, we can’t do that with the pandemic. We can’t do that with, you know, uh, Police targeting of, of people of color. Right. You know, we can’t do that with, with voting rights in Georgia.

[00:37:48] We can’t do that with, you know, the slow pace of change that’s happening, you know, elsewhere around the world. Like we can’t, you know, we can’t. And [00:38:00] so we still have this thing where, you know, where, and I want to talk about this. There’s a really fantastic article, um, in the, uh, in the New York times, um, that, uh, I’ll make sure to send a bread so he can put the link to it in the show notes, but I’m sure it’s good.

[00:38:22] It’s one of those things, I’m sure we’ll go quote, unquote viral and that you’ll see posted many other places, but it’s it’s this and that is, um, that. There’s actually a, a mental health professional term. That’s been coined for this kind of feeling that many of us are having where it’s not actually quite depression, but the certainly not like joy, inhalation, you know, it feels like what we might kind of feel if we were starting to get depressed, but it’s, it’s not that acute.

[00:38:58] It’s not that it’s [00:39:00] not quite there. And that term is languishing. And I really, I really liked that because I feel that’s where so many people are right now. So many people I know right now are, are languishing, right? It is it’s this, this kind of blah, this kind of

[00:39:28] not hope less, but less hope.

[00:39:30] Brett: [00:39:30] Yeah, that, that, that point where we should be feeling hopeful on paper, but we have this form of like almost PTSD.

[00:39:40] Patrick: [00:39:40] Yeah. Or, or just like, or even just kind of that feeling that another shoes got to drop because we’ve just been hammered over and over and over again. And every hope that we keep our hopes have been continually getting dashed. And so why is this one, any different.

[00:39:58] Brett: [00:39:58] I mean, just to look at the [00:40:00] examples you brought up, w w w based on my conditioning, it’s really easy for me to see that, uh, like the Derek Trovan like that was, um, it, it, it was, uh, accountability, but there were, there wasn’t justice and it didn’t because they throw them under the bus so quickly. Uh, it doesn’t lead to any overall condemnation of the MPD.

[00:40:21] Uh, our numbers are going, are our vaccine, a vaccine count is going up, but if States are hitting a point where now they don’t have enough people to use the vaccines, because there’s so much disinformation while our numbers at best are plat showing. As far as new infections, like there is always another shoe and we’ve really become accustomed to seeing that.

[00:40:43] Patrick: [00:40:43] Yeah. Yeah. And, you know, and it just, it seems like there’s so much more work to do, and that work seems insurmountable. Um, and you know, um, someone [00:41:00] asked me yesterday, like when, you know, when I would kind of know, was kind of start to feel that things were really changing, uh, you know, police wise. And I said, when I’m driving in traffic and this just happened to me on Tuesday, And then we’re, we’re recording this on a Thursday, um, where, you know, just regular traffic driving around there’s, there’s a cop in back of me, right.

[00:41:34] Just to please current back at me now, you know, just, you know, as part of traffic he’s driving, just like everyone else’s driving. Right. Well, I don’t ever have a police card back of me without immediately tensing up without immediately thinking, going through my head about all the things I could have done wrong thought immediately thinking in my head, like, are my tail lights [00:42:00] working?

[00:42:01] Is my license plate light working? Like when was the last time I had that looked at, um,

[00:42:06] Brett: [00:42:06] air freshener hanging from my mirror.

[00:42:10] Patrick: [00:42:10] hanging from the mirror, do I, you know it, you know, and, and if I do get pulled over, okay, where am I going to put my hands? Should I, should I take my wallet out right away and like put it on the dashboard? Um, like before he starts walking up to the car, um, and then put my hands on the street. Like I have to go through all of this every single time.

[00:42:34] There’s a cop behind me and the, because I’m black. And I know from talking with friends of mine who are not black, that they don’t do that when I do that. Right. Um, so when will things start to feel like there’s real change when I stopped feeling that way, and guess what? [00:43:00] I’m probably not ever going to stop feeling that way.

[00:43:02] Right.

[00:43:02] Brett: [00:43:02] Retina, not in this generation, not, not that change could come, but it it’ll be slow. And even if everything changed right now, that kind of stress, especially in communities of color is not going to just disappear. When the, when the problem itself goes away.

[00:43:21] Patrick: [00:43:21] Oh, and I’ve, and I’ve written about this, right? Because I have no reason to feel like if anyone should feel, um, You know, I’ve, I’ve, I’ve mentioned this before, I’ve written a blog post about it and I’ve, I’ve, I’ve joked about it that like, um, I’m probably one of the few black people, you know, that experiences white privilege, right?

[00:43:44] Because I am fairly light skinned, even though both my parents are black and all of my grandparents are black and all of my great-grandparents are black. We were just, we’re a light-skinned. Folk that marry other light-skinned folks. So we keep having light-skinned folk. Um, and so, and [00:44:00] so I happen to be light scan people look at me and they’re not quite sure, like, are you black?

[00:44:05] Are you maybe, maybe you’re maybe you’re Jewish, you know, maybe you’re Lebanese or, or, uh, you know, I mean, and what’s really hilarious is like, you know, Latino people who automatically assume I’m Latino and Lebanese people who automatically assume I’m Lebanese. Right. You know, and black folks that, you know, while they assume I’m black or I’m mixed.

[00:44:26] Right. You know that, cause we have a lot of that here in Minnesota. Um, and they’re just not sure what to make of me. And because of that, I I’ve never just been pulled over by the police for, um, for lack of cause like so many other darker skin folks that I know have been and are regularly pulled over for lack of cost, um, or with lack of cost.

[00:44:51] Um, Uh, you know, and so I’ve never actually experienced that myself yet. [00:45:00] Here I am with this, with, with, with these fears and these worries and leasing anxieties around it. Right. Um, because I know it could happen to me. Right. Just, just because, because I do look up her, you know, if anything, I do not look white, how about that?

[00:45:21] I look like anything but white. Um, so, um, and so yeah, there’s that, but yeah, I think there’s also, like I said, there’s kind of general sense of just like, gosh, without this, without this house to work on, did you just go and just, you know, pour my head into, uh, into pounding for Joyce into place and, and, you know, making them level, uh, without my, my head into, you know, thinking about.

[00:45:52] You know, the, the complexities of, okay. You know, after we do this, we’ve got to do the electrical and we have to do the electrical before we put in the floor. [00:46:00] And, but once we put it on the floor, we have to, we have to do the plumbing because we can’t eat. I’ll eat like, you know, it’s, it’s, it’s, uh, you know, I’m, I’m playing general contractor.

[00:46:10] And so it’s my job to keep all of the dependencies in my, in my head, as we’re, as we’re moving along and to keep all these pieces moving. And I love getting lost in that stuff, because that’s about the only thing that kind of gives me a sense of like, okay, I did something today.

[00:46:26] Brett: [00:46:26] Right. Um, so you are, I believe president of the board of mental health, miss Minnesota. Tell me what mental health Minnesota is.

[00:46:36] Patrick: [00:46:36] Uh, mental health, Minnesota is a nonprofit, um, that engages in, um, advocacy, um, policy, um, and, uh, direct assistance, uh, for those with, uh, lived, um, mental illness, uh, and, and, uh, mental wellness experience. Um, [00:47:00] one of our, the main things that we, that we do and operate kind of the three main things that are public facing are, uh, number one, um, our online mental health, uh, screenings, which have increased, uh, about, uh, 1100%, uh, since the beginning of the pandemic.

[00:47:23] Um, uh, but if you go to, uh, mental health, Minnesota, Dot org. Um, you can, uh, take, uh, take a online mental health screening and it, you know, it’s not meant to be medically add is not a diagnosis, but it certainly will give you some indication that yeah, you probably may want to get this looked at further or no, you seem okay.

[00:47:53] Um, and we’ll pray at the end of it provide resources and next steps and things you can think about and [00:48:00] do, uh, from there, um, kind of mainly meant for people living in Minnesota, but it also, uh, is available and is access by many people outside from Minnesota. So that’s not a problem. Um, uh, we also have a mental health.

[00:48:17] Health helpline. And the helpline is really for folks that are looking for resources and also to kind of be the second, second step after that screening. So you go through the screening and says, yeah, you may want to get the looked at, um, because you, you look like you could, you have some signs and symptoms of depression.

[00:48:37] Okay, great. Then, you know, what, what do I do next? Well, you know, you can call the helpline and the helpline will help you. Um, Find those resources will help you maybe find a therapist or a psychiatrist or, you know, to kind of, uh, take that on further. We’ll help you connect you with other resources that you may need, and that may even be specific to your [00:49:00] industry, right?

[00:49:00] Th th you know, right now that we have a lot of resources for healthcare workers and first-line, you know, frontline responders, right. Um, that are specific to them. Um, there’s a lot of those that are available and free, um, that were not there before. So that’s kind of what the help line does, but, um, and once again, um, you know, uh, calls to that and engagement with that has increased exponentially.

[00:49:28] Um, uh, but kind of one of my favorites and one of the key things we do is we operate what’s called a warm line. Now what a Warmline is, is you just like, there’s a suicide hotline for those that are really actively to having suicidal thoughts, you call the suicide hotline, right? You, you are actually actively having thoughts where you may, you know, harm or injure somebody else.

[00:49:56] And you’re like, you know, there’s hotlines for you to call. [00:50:00] Um, but there really isn’t anything for somebody who is having a, having a down day, you know, maybe, you know, they’ve been diagnosed with depression or, or, or anxiety or, or whatnot. And they are, if they’re not having a crisis, they’re not in crisis.

[00:50:19] They just, they’re having, they’re having a day where they need to talk to somebody, but they don’t want to talk to their friends. They don’t want to talk to their, to their significant other. They, they really want to talk to somebody who gets it. They want it to be anonymous. Um, And, and they, they don’t want someone who’s just going to try to fix it for them.

[00:50:38] They just want to be heard. Well, that’s what the warm line is for. And the warm line is staffed by, uh, by peer, uh, specialists, uh, folks that have lived mental illness experience that are mental illness survivors, themselves who have been trained to assist others [00:51:00] with mental illness and who are mental illness survivors.

[00:51:02] And so you really are talking on the other side of the phone to somebody who really kind of gets it and I’ve called it. Right on. I have days when I wake up and, you know, I’ve got, I’ve got the piggyback guy on me as I like to call it. Um, you know, I have a post about that, just Google my name and piggyback guy you’ll find it.

[00:51:23] Um, but you know, it’s just like one of those days where I’m just, I woke up and I’m just feeling, feeling like it’s all hard. It’s all just really hard. And, and I need to talk to somebody and I know if I talked to my wife, you know, she’s going to, she’s going to try to perk me up. And that’s the last thing I need.

[00:51:42] I, you know, I know if I talked to a friend is not going to be the same, but he, but you know, I, you know, being able to call somebody anonymously and they don’t know that they’re talking to the president of the board of the organization. They’ll and I’m just, I’m just, you know, some anonymous Schmo on the [00:52:00] other end of the line who needs to, uh, you know, she just needs someone to talk to, to, to listen to me and who gets it.

[00:52:07] Brett: [00:52:07] who might be a languishing.

[00:52:09] Patrick: [00:52:09] Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And, and also, um, you know, the other nice thing is, is that if they sense that, Hey, this is, this is feeling a bit more than, than us. Like maybe you should be calling a hotline, um, you know, let me transfer you. Or maybe you should be, you know, looking, you know, looking into some, you know, hospitalization or looking to talk to a psychiatrist or, you know, maybe it’s a problem with your meds, you know, and maybe you should have that looked at, you know, there you go.

[00:52:45] I mean, they’re really, really well-trained in all of that and, and have the resources and ability to get you to that help too. If they, if they are not the ones, if they identify themselves as yeah. You need more.

[00:53:01] [00:53:00] Brett: [00:53:01] I just had this horrible, uh, the hair club for men guy.

[00:53:07] Patrick: [00:53:07] Okay.

[00:53:07] Brett: [00:53:07] I’m not just the president of the board of the mental health, Minnesota. I’m also a client.

[00:53:13] Patrick: [00:53:13] Yeah, exactly. That’s exactly it. Right. Um, you know, but, uh, but it’s, it’s, it’s a fantastic, fantastic, uh, thing in a service that really no one else is, is providing, uh, in the state and the way that, uh, in the way that we are. Um, and I think, um, it’s, it’s, there’s such a need for it and we’ve just got, that’s exploded too.

[00:53:42] Um, if you think the, the explosion of the helpline and the online screenings is, is something you should see what’s going on with our warm line and the number of operators we’ve had to add to support that. Um, uh, but, but yeah, um, it’s, it’s really needed [00:54:00] right now. I think. Yeah, especially because there’s a lot of people who are, who are languishing.

[00:54:05] And a lot of those people don’t necessarily have lived experience with mental illness, that this is all new to them and they don’t know what to call it, and they don’t have a name to put on it. And the, you know, the best way to, to, uh, have power over your demons is to, is to have a name for them. So I think, uh, that article does a good job towards giving a name and making you understand that mental wellness is, is a spectrum.

[00:54:35] It’s not a binary. You’re, it’s not, I’m either happy or depressed. Uh I’m either, um, uh, I’m either anxious or I’m manic. Right. You know, it’s not, it’s not like, you know, uh, you know, it’s not that kind of binary. It’s it’s, it is a spectrum and everybody is somewhere on that line. Everybody is somewhere [00:55:00] you’re you’re you’re along that spectrum somewhere.

[00:55:02] Um, and so it’s, it’s just a question of, of, uh, identifying where you are on that spectrum, so that then you can do what’s needed to be done to either a get to a better place, the maintain where you are, because where you are is just, it’s just honky-dory and fine. Or, or, you know, see, um, you know, get the help that you need to be able to kind of, you know, make it from our day to day, week to week.

[00:55:36] Brett: [00:55:36] Well, that sounds like a fantastic resource. I, uh, I, I always feel awkward going from mental health discussions into sponsor reads

[00:55:48] Patrick: [00:55:48] but it has to be done.

[00:55:49] Brett: [00:55:49] it. It does. We got to pay the bills.

[00:55:51] Patrick: [00:55:51] to be paid. Yeah.

[00:55:53] Sponsor: PDFpenBrett – sponsors: [00:55:53] Thanks to PDF pan for sponsoring systematic this week, PDF pen is truly the ultimate tool for everything you need to do with [00:56:00] PDFs. Does your current PDF editor allow you to secure documents, perform OCR, fill out and sign forms. Do all of this on the go. And at low cost PDF pen does PDF pendency all-purpose PDF editor that allows you to improve your workflow and productivity.

[00:56:16] Add signatures, texts and images make changes and correct typos and everything else you need to do with PDF and the ultimate tool for editing PDFs on the Mac now includes even more powerful features, including page label support in multiple formats for documents and pro users can go a step further with the ability to add or edit page labels.

[00:56:37] That’s in addition to the great features available in PDF pen 12, including a magnifier window to zoom in on a document. Customizable compression settings and stationary with new paper colors for custom page designs, PDF pen, and PDF pen pro work with PDF pen for iPad and iPhone for seamless editing across devices with cloud services such as iCloud Dropbox, Google [00:57:00] drive one drive and more.

[00:57:01] Learn more about PDF pen and PDF pen pro at PDF pen.com/podcast.

[00:57:09] Brett: [00:57:09] Well, that brings us to our top three picks. Um, I, since the last time you’ve been on, I have stopped doing my own top three picks because there are only so many things in the world that, that I can truly love. And after a couple of hundred episodes, I’ve run out,

[00:57:25] Patrick: [00:57:25] There’s not enough new new,

[00:57:27] Brett: [00:57:27] but I’m excited to hear what you’ve got for me.

[00:57:29] Patrick: [00:57:29] Okay. Well, um, so, uh, we were talking a little bit about this before we started recording the show today, but, um, but I’ve, I’ve joined the, the cool kids club, um, and gotten, uh, one of these clickety keyboards that, uh, that all the, all the nerds seem to like, um, Uh, I kind of reached out on the, on the Twitter, um, and you know, said, Hey, I might be interested [00:58:00] in, in one of these clicky keyboards, what do people recommend?

[00:58:04] Um, and I got a lot of recommendations back for this particular click of the keyboard, but it just so happens that, uh, an online acquaintance, uh, said, Hey, if you’re, if, if you’re looking at one of those clickety keyboards, I’ve got one here. And if you want it out, I’d be willing to let go of it. A it’s unused and it’s just not my jam.

[00:58:26] And, and, you know, so, yeah, so I, I got one of those clickbait keyboards. Uh, this is the key Cron, uh, K2, um, and it’s got the Brown, uh, MX switches in it. Um, for those nerds that care nerds really, really, really care about this stuff.

[00:58:49] Brett: [00:58:49] We do.

[00:58:50] Patrick: [00:58:50] Oh, my gosh. Um, you know, and, uh, there are, there are opinions, uh, but, uh, I, I like the Brown, the Brown has the, just [00:59:00] enough cliquiness and feedback with, and, and noise without it being too annoying.

[00:59:05] Um,

[00:59:05] Brett: [00:59:05] not like they’re blue or anything.

[00:59:07] Patrick: [00:59:07] well, you know, blue or light, you know, I mean, you know, you, you you’d rather eat nails

[00:59:15] Brett: [00:59:15] You know what, you know, what I’m into now is the box white. I had never heard of box white until recently.

[00:59:20] Patrick: [00:59:20] wait, wait, box white.

[00:59:21] Brett: [00:59:21] Yeah. Instead of like the standard MX switch, their box switches, you’ll have to look it up next time you get nerdy about it, but anyway, please continue.

[00:59:30] Patrick: [00:59:30] Okay. All right. Well, you know, I’m, I’m still, I’m still got the training wheels on, you know, and, and, and our little chat back and forth before the program, uh, Brett can tell you, uh, it is, it is type of city around here, but that’s okay. Uh, I’m, I’m getting used to it. Cause the other thing about it is that I’m not a, I’m not a typist typist.

[00:59:49] I never took a typing class, um, in high school, in my life. In fact, uh, I’m just, I’m a really fast hunting pecker. I’m, uh, I’m a two finger typist. Um, [01:00:00] and I’m a no look hog hunting pecker to now. So my typos are not necessarily, um, it’s, it’s it’s depth and travel right related more so than it is clickety keyboard related.

[01:00:16] Uh, because I’ve gotten so used to the depth and travel of say, uh, the, uh, Apple keyboard I was using before, which has really shallow keys as you know, and thus, and, and, and wider travel, um, or different travel. So I, you know, it’s, it’s that? All right. So key Cron, K2. I got the one with the all white, uh, LEDs, but they also make one with like jumpy color LEDs, uh, whatever, whatever suits your fancy, they, they can make an apparently.

[01:00:48] Brett: [01:00:48] So I’m the version, two of the ultimate hacking keyboard right now. And it came with RGB lighting and I’ve never cared about RGB lighting. I still don’t [01:01:00] really like, I would never intentionally buy a keyboard, but the way that this keyboard works, like there’s no function key row. There’s no number pad.

[01:01:08] Every it’s like a, I think it would be considered like a 70%, 60 something percent keyboard and you hold down modifier keys and it changes the behavior.

[01:01:19] Patrick: [01:01:19] Right.

[01:01:20] Brett: [01:01:20] an arrow key. I hold down the mod key. And with this RGB lighting set up the way it is when I hold down a modifier key, it highlights the keys that are affected by that layer, which is actually,

[01:01:34] Patrick: [01:01:34] that’s really cool. That’s really neat.

[01:01:38] Brett: [01:01:38] that’s a useful, useful use for RGB back lighting.

[01:01:41] Patrick: [01:01:41] right, because normally as it is, like, it is on this keyboard, even just the plain white cycling through those options, it’s like, well, you can have it just straight on all the time or straight off all the time, or it can do this wave pattern every time you type, or it can highlight each key individually as you type, or it can do this woo up [01:02:00] and down, sort of like an, or it can blink.

[01:02:02] It’s like, no, I just want, I just can’t. I just get a backlight, like I have on my Mac book air, like, can I just do that? And yeah.

[01:02:12] Brett: [01:02:12] is asking for. Yeah.

[01:02:13] Patrick: [01:02:13] Right. You, you can do that too, but in any case, uh, so that that’s, that’s a pickle one. Um, pick two, um, uh, uh, Ugmonk uh, U G M O N K. Uh, Jeff is the, uh, is the founder and a proprietor, uh, there, and, uh, originally started off making these kind of cool t-shirts that were, uh, that were popular amongst the hipster crowd that has grown into, um, more and more things, uh, recently had a successful Kickstarter and those have all been shipped out.

[01:02:52] And so now, uh, they’re available on his store for, uh, this new, uh, Uh, [01:03:00] productivity system with product, um, uh, called analog. And, uh, what analog is, is it’s a productivity system that’s based on three by five cards. Um, and he has these nice analog cards to go with this really nice holder that he has. And the holder like is really cool and kind of part of the system and that, you know, you have like a today card and like a tomorrow card and then like a, uh, a someday card.

[01:03:32] And there’s a little card holder slot built into the card holder storage thing where you can have this card kind of standing up in front of mind. Now I’ve used three-by-five cards for my productivity system, uh, along with the dash plus system that I developed years and years ago, I think back in like 2006, um, uh, for my, for my stuff for a long time.

[01:04:00] [01:04:00] Um, and with the Kickstarter, you could only get like the cards, his index cards with the holders, and they kind of had his system kind of baked into those things of the printing on the cards, which is great. And his fantastic, except for I’m kind of picky about the index cards that I use for my system. Um, I won’t get into the history, but like I’m so picky about it that when these cards were about to stop being made, which they were, um, I bought out the remaining stock of these cards so that I have enough to last me for a very, very long time to come.

[01:04:32] At least I would guess about 10 years. Um, And so, uh, and so I was like, you know, I, I don’t, I don’t need the cards. I’m happy with my three by five cards. Well, what’s nice about now that they’re available on the Ugmonk shop versus the Kickstarter is that you can get the card holder thing all by itself, which I did.

[01:04:56] Um, and I love, and I think it’s fantastic and I just use it [01:05:00] with my own three-by-five cards. So I think that’s, that’s what I like about it too, is that you don’t have to buy into the system to get the nice card holder thing is you can get the nice card holder thing separately and use your own damn index cards.

[01:05:12] Wow.

[01:05:13] Brett: [01:05:13] That’s uh, I, uh, the first, my last guest was Aaron manky. He’s been on a few times before, but

[01:05:20] Patrick: [01:05:20] Okay. Well then I guess, I guess we can bring up with cards I’m talking about.

[01:05:26] Brett: [01:05:26] Are the frictionless cards too.

[01:05:28] Patrick: [01:05:28] course, of course they

[01:05:29] Brett: [01:05:29] I still use those myself. I bought a ton of them back in the day three by five cards are like, I’ve never done well with a moleskin notebooks or, or other like bullet journals and stuff. But yeah, my three by five cards I have, I have all these different ways of storing them and holding them.

[01:05:46] I have little, a little safe looking things for like locking them away. Yeah. Um, I do, I do, I do appreciate them. And I always like those frictionless cards and I, I dig [01:06:00] this, uh, I think this holder.

[01:06:02] Patrick: [01:06:02] But when I, you know, before Aaron became famous and you know, when, when he was closing down that business, because he was becoming famous, um, I, I, I re I said, I will buy every last one you have, if you’re willing to sell, just I don’t send it, just tell me a number and I’ll pay it. And that’s what I.

[01:06:24] Brett: [01:06:24] Yep. That’s a interesting, interesting synchronicity there.

[01:06:28] Patrick: [01:06:28] Yes, very interesting synchronicity. Um, and so, yeah, I’m, I’m, I’m a big fan of those cards and if you can’t get them anymore, uh I’m part of the reason why. Um, so, uh, so yeah, that’s, that was, uh, that was picked number two. Um, pick number three, um, is actually, um, uh, I’m reading this really fantastic book right now.

[01:06:56] Um, and it’s actually not one book, three books. [01:07:00] Um, uh, it was a trilogy, uh, release as a trail trilogy originally. Um, but it’s been, um, that Trilogy’s been young. Combined into a, into a new, a new, beautiful new volume of the three books all together. Um, and it’s, uh, area X, uh, the Southern reach trilogy, uh, uh, by Jeff VanderMeer.

[01:07:28] Um, and I can’t really talk too much about it without giving it away, but because the three books is rather thick is rather big. One of my reading goals for this year, which I post up on my blog at the beginning of every year, usually on January 1st, every year. Okay. Here’s my reading plan for the year. Um, because I’m a really slow reader and I, I, if I have a plan, if I have kind of some constraints, um, it helps me narrow my choices down, um, because we have a lot [01:08:00] of books, a lot of books.

[01:08:02] Um, um, my wife is a, is, is, uh, she, she’s an amazingly fast reader and she is a voracious reader. She reads easily 75, 80 books a year. Um, Um, and, but this one is just, it’s so much fun. And even though I’m a slow reader, and even though it’s a great big book, I’m just kind of plowing through it. I’m picking it up whenever I have a free moment.

[01:08:29] Um, it is that kind of, um, uh, that kind of pastime, uh, and it’s, it’s definitely kind of a, sort of. Thrillers sort of book, um, uh, essentially, uh, a large, uh, section of the coastal United States, um, has been, uh, cordoned off, uh, because of, well, what the government is telling, uh, the people, um, is, you [01:09:00] know, some variation of natural disaster contamination, that sort of thing.

[01:09:05] But in fact is something that they don’t even know what the heck is going on there. And this is really all about the, the various teams and people that they have been sending in to try to figure out what’s going on there. Um, and that’s as much as I’ll say about it, um, get it is fantastic. The cover is beautiful.

[01:09:25] This is one of those books that you will be proud to have and display on your shelf.

[01:09:30] Brett: [01:09:30] You know, what I got really into in 2020 and explored was a black female Saifai authors

[01:09:37] Patrick: [01:09:37] Oh, yeah. Octavia Butler

[01:09:39] Brett: [01:09:39] and Nettie, a Cora for an NK Jemisin and I read so much black female Saifai and it was, there was some great stuff I

[01:09:48] Patrick: [01:09:48] Oh, there’s some fantastic stuff.

[01:09:50] Brett: [01:09:50] you read Nettie, Cora for the Binti trilogy and stuff like that? Yeah.

[01:09:56] Patrick: [01:09:56] Yes. Very, very good. Um, well [01:10:00] and well, so, uh, my goal last year was, um, that I never, I didn’t, what’s interesting at the beginning of the year I tried, I said, I’m not going to tell you what my goal is. I’m going to see if you can.

[01:10:14] I have one, I’m going to see if anyone can figure it out along the way, because I, um, post, uh, Patrick rhone.net/reading. Um, I have every book I’ve read since 2012 with a short review. And, uh, and so last year was, I didn’t read any white male authors. It was only people of color by trans you know, women. You get what I’m saying?

[01:10:47] Right. it was, it was, you know, it was BiPAP, LGBT, um, you know, female. Um, and it was [01:11:00] specifically about avoiding, uh, white men, nothing against white men. I love white men. Um,

[01:11:09] Brett: [01:11:09] My best friends are white men.

[01:11:10] Patrick: [01:11:10] With some, some of my best friends are Aaron fact white men. I’m talking to a white man right now. Um, so, so that proves, I know at least one, um, and, uh, you know, my bookshelves are filled with, with, uh, with these white men.

[01:11:25] Uh, so that tells you that I’m not adverse to reading, uh, the white men. I just thought, Hey, this would be an interesting experience experiment for a reading goal for a year, just to kind of see, you know, how difficult or easy it was to do. And, and honestly, there were a ton of books, a ton. So here’s the problem that you make a goal like that.

[01:11:46] And then like some of your favorite white male authors start releasing like great books that you want to read. And you’re like, Oh, No, no. Uh, you [01:12:00] know, uh, Neal Stephenson came out with a book last year. Uh, you know, that I still want to read this year because this is about big books, you know? Um, my friend Kelly McCullough came out with it.

[01:12:11] You know, I had a book last year that I had to put aside in this part of a series that, that, uh, that I adore. Right. Um, yeah. I mean, so many, so many great

[01:12:23] Brett: [01:12:23] You know what tempted me back to white man fiction was this nostalgia for William Gibson. Neuromancer MonaLisa overdrive. So I’ve, I’m almost back through Neuromancer right now. And it feels weird to be back on the white guy train.

[01:12:41] Patrick: [01:12:41] Yeah. How is it revisiting that? Because I imagine when you first read it, you probably read it like, you know, when you were a punk teenager, like me. Yeah.

[01:12:52] Brett: [01:12:52] it, I, I love it. Like he, he was so prescient about, I mean, this is the guy who coined the [01:13:00] term cyberspace. Like he knew this stuff was coming and, and I’ve read all of his work since then, but going back and reading Neuromancer is it’s a trip. It, I. It’s a definite, uh, it, I have a different appreciation now than I did back in the early nineties when the internet was just, just a, a baby of a thing. Yeah. Anyway,

[01:13:24] Patrick: [01:13:24] Yeah. It’s always interesting. Um, uh, that actually was going to be one of my, you know, reading goals will be for a future year is, you know, going back through and reading all of those books, rereading all those books that I loved as a teenager and seeing how I feel about them now. Wow.

[01:13:42] Brett: [01:13:42] snow crash. I bet I should revisit snow crash.

[01:13:45] Patrick: [01:13:45] Oh yeah. I’m almost afraid to reread snow crash.

[01:13:48] No seriously, because I’m, uh, I’m afraid. I won’t like it as much.

[01:13:52] Brett: [01:13:52] Oh man.

[01:13:54] Patrick: [01:13:54] I loved that book. Oh my God. I love that book. Um, you know, uh, I [01:14:00] mean, in the end, even self-helpy stuff, right. I’m looking, I’m just turning around here at my desk because I’ve got, uh, I’ve got a large bookshelf behind me and um, uh, you know, the road less traveled.

[01:14:11] I read the road less traveled, uh, as, as a, as a teenager. And I, I, it, like, I remember just having the obsession with that book for a good six months to a year. And it’s like, would I still have that now? You know? So it doesn’t have to be like scifi fiction. A lot of it’s like, self-helpy stuff that like, as a teenager, I like, I was like, Oh, this guy’s really onto something.

[01:14:34] It’s like, would I feel that way now? I don’t.

[01:14:37] Brett: [01:14:37] I feel like the self-helpy stuff probably has a greater chance of, of wringing differently in your adult life than some of the, like the scifi stuff is easy to wax nostalgic about and still appreciate.

[01:14:51] Patrick: [01:14:51] Yeah, I think you’re right about that. I think the, I th I think the kind of nonfiction and the self-helpy stuff, uh, uh, [01:15:00] probably, uh, well, I mean, but there’s, there is still stuff with like, just fantastic advice, uh, your, your money or your life, I’m looking back. And another, uh, uh, like completely changed the way I looked at at money and how I dealt with it.

[01:15:15] And like was the first book to really have me understand, like having a long term, um, understanding of, of, uh, of investment and money and savings and all of that stuff. And all of that practical advice, I kind of flipped through it. We are today. Cause I was thinking about, uh, would this be a good, good book for my daughter?

[01:15:39] Beatrix who’s 13. Um, you know, who has a problem? Uh, well, you know, you put a 20 in her hand and it almost disappears immediately into someone else’s hands.

[01:15:52] Brett: [01:15:52] Are you how that works,

[01:15:53] Patrick: [01:15:53] Yeah. And, and since, and so, you know, I was like, you know, huh, I wonder, I wonder what she, how [01:16:00] she would take this at this age. Right. So yeah, it’s, it’s things like that.

[01:16:05] So I think there is much to be said about, uh, about going back and revisiting some of those things and seeing if you still have the same feelings, uh, seeing if you have different feelings, I’m a big fan of rereading books.

[01:16:17] Brett: [01:16:17] that, uh, that third pick of your stern did like seven links in the show notes. So

[01:16:22] Patrick: [01:16:22] Oh, I’m

[01:16:23] Brett: [01:16:23] no. Well done well done. Um, so let’s recap, we’ve, we’ve mentioned a bunch of places. People can find you, uh, if you were going to put two or three at the top of the list, where would you say people should look you up?

[01:16:36] Patrick: [01:16:36] All right. Well, um, Patrick rhone.net, uh, is my kind of main blog. Um, I logged there daily. Um, uh, what is interesting about that blog is that it is kind of my social blog and other words, uh, I will. Have very short, less than [01:17:00] 280 character posts there. Um, uh, I use it like I might use Twitter, um, and I rarely post to Twitter.

[01:17:09] Um, and, and so if you’re looking for, Hey, what’s going on with Patrick? I haven’t seen anything from him for a while and you’re on Twitter or Facebook, which I almost don’t ever engage with at all. Um, I avoid it like the plague. Um, but I keep an account there for, I don’t know. I don’t know why I do it to be honest with you.

[01:17:28] Cause my wife needs me mainly. Um, Uh, so yeah, uh, that’s where you can find me even including like, you know, it’s, it’s, uh, it’s a place worth a daily visit, I guess, is what I’m trying to say. And I’m not saying that for my numbers, cause I don’t even look at my numbers. I don’t care about stats. Um, but you know, that’s where people come.

[01:17:48] If they want to see what’s going on with me, what would a wow. Um, is the home improvement blog. I’m also posting there very, very regularly because they’re very, everything’s like in like [01:18:00] right when I get off this call, I’m going to have to run and get wood and you have no idea how much time I spend thinking about would these days.

[01:18:07] Um, and, and the, and the price of wood and the cost of wood, which is just insane right now. Um, and so, uh, yeah, so I gotta, I gotta go get some wood, uh, but what a while. Um, and you know, if you go to Patrick rhone.com. That will lead you to other things. It will lead you to where my Twitter is. It will lead you to, you know, my books.

[01:18:32] Um, if you’re interested in that sort of thing, it will, you know, uh, it, it pretty much is kind of the business card to everywhere else. I am. So, uh, so that’s kind of a good one.

[01:18:45] Brett: [01:18:45] All right. Excellent. Well, thanks for your time today. It was, uh, it was a, a wide ranging and, and in depth conversation, I really enjoyed this.

[01:18:55] Patrick: [01:18:55] Yeah. Thank you so much, Brett. You know, I, I love you man. And, [01:19:00] uh, I, I really think the world of you and I really appreciate you having me on, um, and you know, I, I look forward to seeing you in PR. I mean, we don’t live that far away,

[01:19:09] Brett: [01:19:09] We really don’t

[01:19:11] Patrick: [01:19:11] so we, we, but because we’re introverts, we never actually see each other in person

[01:19:15] Brett: [01:19:15] even before the pandemic.

[01:19:17] Patrick: [01:19:17] even before the pandemic.

[01:19:18] So I would very much like to change.

[01:19:20] Brett: [01:19:20] Yes, we should. Uh, we should get together.

[01:19:23] Patrick: [01:19:23] All right.

[01:19:23] Brett: [01:19:23] All right. And thanks everyone for tuning in this week. We’ll see you in a week.