Laura Erickson's For the Birds

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Zooming into the future

My office
You might be able to see the dent in the file cabinet, right under the tape. We got it at Sears for better than half price in 1972 (Yep, during the Nixon administration) when we got married and moved into our first apartment. We could afford it specifically thanks to that dent. This is the only file cabinet I've ever been emotionally bonded to, so of course it stays! 

I've spent the last few months downsizing—moving out of my old office, the largest room in our house back when I needed space for Archimedes's flight cage, into one of the smallest rooms. 
Laura Erickson
Archimedes needed room enough to spread his wings. Me, I don't even have wings.

My daughter and son-in-law are staying with us right now and apparently are in the process of transforming me into a grandmother, so they need the space and I don't.  

But this has involved enormous purging, from five file cabinets down to two, and SEVEN bookcases down to two. I'm finally DONE! There's room enough for my desk treadmill with floorspace to spare so I can do my other exercises since I can't be going to cardiac rehab right now. Dogs have trouble adjusting to changes, but Pip seems happy now, too. 

My office

And now that this project is done, I'm ready to work my way into the Digital Age. I got a Zoom account and am figuring out how to make and record presentations. My sister- and brother-in-law, Jeanie and Mike, helped with that today. I've already been asked to provide a few programs for groups, and suddenly realized Zoom would also make it possible for me to do informal programs every month to connect with radio/podcast listeners and blog readers.  

I've done "For the Birds" as a volunteer since the Reagan administration, and started my blog in 2007, and plan to keep them both available for free forever, but it really would help if I could make a little more income. My annual income most years stays firmly in four digits, making it hard for me to maintain my computer and camera equipment. So I've signed up for Patreon. People who contribute to For the Birds at any tier, including $1.00 per month, will be invited to my monthly Zoom meeting, where I'll take questions, play sounds, show pictures, and whatever else seems appropriate. I'm scheduling the first for July 1 at 7:00 pm CDT.  My webmaster/daughter and son-in-law are helping with the fine-tuning for thanking my contributors. 

Pip and I have been practicing Zooming today. If you come the the July 1 program, you'll be able to see how much my "skunk stripe" (this pandemic is turning my hair white!) has widened between now and then.  

Pip and I practicing Zoom.