Well, folks, you've been in the dark long enough.
Over the past couple of weeks, I've been through something of a core meltdown. My back exploded on me again (and before you offer friendly advice, I'd like to remind you that my problem is the result of a four-storey fall from a helicopter and the resulting displacement of the spinous and transverse processes on a number of vertebrae, and did not arise as a lack of yoga or accupuncture), landing me pretty solidly in bed for a week. And between the pain and the drugs I've been using to manage it, I've been living in a pretty dark and scary place lately. That may not have been reflected in my online life, but my online presence over the past two weeks has been the extent of my sanity, and that has been happening at odd hours to say the least, in thinly-dispersed half-hour segments.
The upshot of all of this is that I've pretty thoroughly mangled my professional career, having proven myself beyond any reasonably doubt to be unreliable as an employee. That is unlikely to change in the near future, since I've got to live with this back of mine until I can arrange to have the damned thing fused. I am certainly not looking forward to it, but given a choice between severely reduced mobility and continued and increasingly frequent bouts of drug-addled agony, even permanent confinement to a wheelchair looks to be the winner.
That gives me more than a little incentive to finish up those personal projects during my periods of lucidity. Whatever income they generate will likely need to supplement a disability benefit. I'd like to do something a bit more productive, but since I have no way to predict when or for how long I'll be able to work, I can't really count on work-for-hire for the next little while at least. It certainly wouldn't be fair to anyone who'd hire me to get halfway into a project then wind up putting things on hold until my mind and body are ready to work again. And that's the reality of my life right now -- I can fold up at any time, without warning.
There likely won't be a huge amount of activity here for the next little bit, although I will try to post a little bit of nothing occasionally. I hope to be able to formally announce the availability of my book here in sometime in the next month. It will be a self-published title (I'll be using Lulu to do on-demand printing), and probably of more use to folks other than the readers of this little blog. (Don't worry, Mr. Duff -- I'll treat you just like I was a real publisher or something.)
Lotusphere is out of the question, though, so to all who have offered help, particularly to Bruce, thanks -- the spirit is willing, but the flesh wishes it could make its way up to weak some day. Maybe someday, if I'm still in the game, but I can't take that sort of a chance right now. It's one thing to gamble on foreign health care expenses in case of an unlikely emergency; it's quite another to be almost able to count on something untoward happening.
In the meantime, I will be moving back to the Toronto area shortly and putting myself in the care of good friends who likely don't realise the enormity of the generous offer they have made me. I can only hope, for their sake, that I can get this damned back problem resolved one way or another before too much time has gone by.