This was one of the best concerts I have ever seen. I was so blown away after the first song that I had to yell "holy fuck". It sounded so incredible. The drums were super tight, everyone was putting all their energy into the music, and it's unbelievable how good Marcel Veenendaal sounds live.

If you've never heard of DI-RECT (they're quite popular in the Netherlands but not so much here in Germany), I highly recommend you check them out. This radio concert is how I found them, and I don't understand how it only has 20k views.

On Repeat: Moby – Resound NYC

A few times a year, I come across an album that completely captures me. I get so hooked on it, and end up playing it on repeat, all day long. This summer, that album is Moby's Resound NYC.

To be honest, I hadn't really thought about Moby much lately, except for that one How I Met Your Mother episode where they meet a bald guy on New Year's Eve and mistake him for Moby. Other than that, his music didn't really grab my attention much. I mean, sure, I knew some of his banger songs, but that was about it.

But then, someone recommended this new album to me, and after the first minute, I knew that I'll love it. Resound NYC doesn't bring in any new songs, but instead it's Moby's older tracks from 1994 to 2010 in new orchestral arrangements. These versions are all absolute bangers. They're both familiar but also refreshingly new.

Those songs were all influenced by his life in New York City, hence the title: Resound NYC. In a series of short videos on YouTube, Moby shares the stories behind each track. He talks about what life was like in NYC during those times, what he was going through personally, and how each song came to be. How he was living in decimated neighborhoods that were hit hard by the crack epidemic of the 80s and 90s, and even how we was living in an abandoned factory...? It's super interesting, inspiring and emotional.

There's also the album Reprise from 2021, which also consists of new versions of his older songs, but Resound NYC is just... a whole new level. Interestingly enough, both albums feature the track "Extreme Ways", and listening to both, you immediately notice how Resound NYC is much more vibrant and cinematic.

Even though Resound NYC made me listen to the original versions again, I just like the Resound NYC versions much more. And maybe that's by design. Why would he want to make something worse? He transformed it from the music he wanted to release 25 years ago, to the music he wanted to release in 2023.

Portugal, March 2023

Our semi-annual Gigs offsite was this time in Portugal, Guimarães. Beautiful city. I'm not a good photographer.

Went there with Chris, was a great night. I am a huge fan of Maarten. His solo music is much more chill than Balthazar, and it's definitely different and slower compared to a Balthazar concert. But the guy is great, an incredibly talented musician. And I love it when he holds his guitar up under his chin.

Marteen's concerts, both for Balthazar and Warhaus, are not just songs from the album but-it's-live. Instead, he rethinks the songs and how they could work live, creating a very unique experience.

The first solo was kind of weird? It felt like the guitarist and the drummer had no idea what to do. But maybe they were just being musical geniuses, who knows.

Yukno, March 15th 2023, YUCA Cologne

Found myself getting totally lost in the music, just vibing along, no sense for time or space. (Besides the fact that the sound guy seemed to have a problem which he apparently couldn't fix until the end)

I'm exceptionally bad at taking breaks

One of my goals for this year is to get better at taking breaks from work. But, honestly, I'm doing a terrible job at it. Whether it's taking a lunch break, calling it a day, or taking a little coffee break: I don't stop when I should stop. I keep telling myself I'll do better, but in the moment, I screw up. And it's not because work is stressful or too much is expected of me – it's my own fault.

The problem is, I'm always telling myself that I'll just finish this one small thing that'll only take 2 minutes. But then 5 minutes pass, and another 5 minutes, and another, until half an hour has gone by. And suddenly, I've only got a short lunch break before the next meeting starts. It's funny how in this situation I keep looking at the time, seeing how it flies, and I'm just like, "Oh God, I should get going..." but I don't do it. Even though I should just get up and go. I'm such a dingus.

I know that I don't have to respond to messages right away. No one expects an immediate response. But it's just one message, which then turns into a few messages, and then a longer conversation. Or when doing code reviews, I tell myself that I'll just write those few last comments and finish up the whole review (even though nobody would be mad if I submit only half a review, and do the next half later). Or when I'm coding, just a few more lines of code.

It's always small tasks that, for some reason, I think will be done in 2 minutes.

But I always feel like I have to get it all done, or else it's going to occupy my mind all through lunch or the next day. But will it really? Like... really?

Two weeks ago, I took a day off and didn't check Slack even once. I woke up to a bunch of notifications on my phone, and without reading them, I paused all work-related apps. And you know what? I didn't check them all day. This surprised me because I usually open Slack automatically, like how you open TikTok, but not while you're sitting on the toilet. That was a win!

The thing is, I keep telling myself I'll do better tomorrow, but then I relapse the day after. It feels like an endless cycle. It makes me less motivated to do better. Even though I know I should just take a goddamn break.

Fargo, Season 4

I missed the dark humor of seasons 1-3, where it always felt like a mix of "that's a whoopsie" and "oh geez" from the very first episode. This is what made Fargo so unique to me. Season 4 felt more like "holy..." – and only after a few episodes.

It was still quite compelling in its own way, had some unexpected twists, and there were some elements of dark humor present. Though the dark humor focused mostly on weird deaths, instead of the typical chain of unfortunate circumstances. At least the unnecessary, yet fun, paranormal stuff wasn't removed.

Score: 68%

Blogging like Chris Coyier

Chris Coyier is well-known for blogging a mind-boggling amout of posts on CSS-Tricks (which is now owned by DigitalOcean). But I'm not going to talk about his stuff on CSS-Tricks, but instead about his personal blog

Chris' blog feels like a stream of consciousness. It's just what he's thinking about at the moment, without any deeper meaning or learning. And yet, those thoughts are still interesting and fun to read. Annoyed at System Fonts in macOS? Just blog about it. Orange favicons work great for light and dark themes? Why not write down that thought, then notice that Safari is weird, and end it with "Time for a nap". It's refreshing to see someone share their half-baked ideas without feeling the need to make a grand conclusion or provide a takeaway for the reader. You can just end your post if you don't know what else to write.

It feels like a conversation with a friend. Sometimes you just want to talk about something that's been on your mind without worrying about whether it's profound or even fully formed. It's totally normal in a conversation to suddenly end your thought mid-sentence with a big ol' shrug. And that's what his blog feels like to me.

Maybe we sometimes try too hard to offer some kind of education or to present ourselves as experts? At least I sometimes feel that way. But I don't think that's necessary. It's nice to take a break from expert content and just read something that's relatable and human.

Chris has definitely inspired me to post more half-baked thoughts. And to not think about words and sentences and publishing too much. Just write it down, press the big button, and continue with your day.

Two weeks with the Aeron Chair

I bought a fully loaded Herman Miller Aeron Remastered Chair, and have been sitting on it for the last two weeks. Fun Fact: Aeron stands for "an expensive Ron". So you're asking what it's like to sit on Ron?

a picture of an Aeron Chair in my home office

Of course it's good. It has to be good. It's an expensive chair, it better be good. I've sat on a cheap DX Racer for the last 7 years, which isn't a fair comparison, but whattayawannado.

First of all, this thing is like a hammock for your butt. It doesn't get uncomfortable even after hours and hours of sitting. And the tilting mechanism – gosh! – it is so well adjusted. When I simply lean back, I sit comfortably straight and it supports my back. And when I use a little more pressure, it tilts back (because I didn't lock the back rest). But I don't tilt back until it locks, I just stop wherever feels good to me. And then I comfortably lean back and the thing still supports my back. That's crazy to me! I don't need to turn any knobs to change if I want to sit straight or lean back, so I change my sitting position automatically whenever I feel like it.

It's so comfortable. You can't really sit wrong on it, you're automatically in the correct position. The "PostureFit" lumbar support pads I don't really feel pressing against my back, but I do feel that it supports me. The lack of a missing headrest made me a bit sceptical at first, but I don't miss the headrest at all. I guess those fancy engineers at Herman Miller were right about that one.

People online reported that they have back pains in the first weeks because they didn't sit straight for years, but I only felt it for 2 days or so. And then it actually relieved my most noticeable back pain! I always had this tension next to my right shoulder blade, and now it's gone.

So is it worth it? This thing has 12 years guarantee. This comes down to a bit more than 100€ a year. And they usually last way longer. That's worth it to me.