Posts by Jeff Geerling about life, marriage, religion, philosophy and technology. Formerly titled 'Matthew 12:37 - Blog by a God-fearing Man'.

Experience with LASIK

A few years back, I got LASIK eye surgery to correct my vision, and ended up with 16/20 vision a couple weeks after. Over the past couple years, my vision has finally gotten to the point where things are just blurry enough to necessitate glasses for some kinds of activity, so I've been considering getting LASIK again (the optometrist I used has a significant discount for repeat procedures, so it's an easier decision this time around!).

One of the major hurdles to LASIK for almost everyone I've talked to is the fear of having a procedure done on both eyes—and anything that has the potential to radically alter one of your five senses in a significant way is daunting!

I found this excellent summary of the procedure (warning: language in the rest of that thread), which sums up the procedure perfectly:

During the procedure, they'll tell you to look at the red focusing light, and try not to move your eye away from it. The implied warning is: if you move, the laser might miss its target. And by God, you'll focus on that light more than anything you've ever done in your life. And it will be super difficult. Have you ever tried staring at something without moving your eyes, even a little? It's impossible. You'll be terrified the whole time, that if you move your eye even a millimeter, it'll **** up your life.

You can't close your eye; they have it wedged open with some Clockwork Orange contraption. You can't blink, and they occasionally squirt your eye with some solution to keep it moist. Your eyelid will constantly be fighting to close, trying to escape the doctor's dark work.

You know what they don't tell you about, ahead of time? The smell. You will smell burning flesh - it'll fill the room, and permeate into your sinuses. You'll continue to smell it for days, afterward. That smell is your eyeball burning, as they make the corrections.

The entire thing takes 10 minutes. Then you go home, listen to some relaxing music, go to sleep, and wake up with 20/20 vision.

Oh. My. God.

My two main memories are that red light and the smell... the smell they tell you is just 'the laser'. No, it's the smell of your vision being changed—and until a few days later, it is your only memory. But the ability to see again. That is the game-changer. It's amazing to have that gift without the assistance of glasses or contact lenses. And it allows you to do some simple but life-changing things, like wear simple, cheap sunglasses.

I'm not 100% sure why I'm posting this now, other than to (a) remind myself of the experience, and (b) give some thoughts to others who are considering LASIK. It's a trepidatious prospect, but it is truly life-changing.

Finished writing my first book, Ansible for DevOps

After almost two years of writing, editing, and rewriting my book, I've finally completed the first edition of Ansible for DevOps, and it's available for sale on Amazon, LeanPub, and iTunes!

Ansible for DevOps cover - book on Ansible by Jeff Geerling

The book is 400 pages long, just shy of 80,000 words, and was a huge effort. It's such a relief to finally have it 'out the door', though publishing-as-I-write has been a great experience. Pre-first-edition, I've already sold over 2,200 copies of Ansible for DevOps on LeanPub!

Here are a few blog posts from Server where I describe more of the publication process:

If you've ever thought about writing your own book and self-publishing, give LeanPub a try! It's the best publishing platform for most types of books nowadays. Even if you want to go a more traditional route, you can self-pub with other services like CreateSpace or Lulu!

Souls and Goals - 2015 Soccer Game

STEAL NOTHING BUT PHOTOGRAPHS: 2014 - Souls and Goals &emdash; Souls and Goals-103

The 'Souls and Goals' soccer match is now in its third year! The Kenrick-Glennon Seminary Lions will battle against the Clergy and Company team (comprised of a bunch of priests and a few friends, like me!).

The game will be held at St. Dominic High School on Thursday, November 5, with a kickoff at 7 p.m. The game is free to anyone, and concessions will be available. More info is available on the Souls and Goals website (with a fresh new design for 2015).

I'll be playing in goal again this year (as part of the 'and Company' on the Clergy side), wearing my Vatican-yellow jersey! The Seminarians won the past two Cups—we'll see if we can pull off a victory this year!

Shrewsbury, MO Walmart opens September 23, 2015

At long last, I found the date that the Shrewsbury, MO Walmart at Kenrick Plaza opens: September 23, 2015. I know a lot of people have asked me about this over the past year, as this blog, for some reason or another, is pretty much the only source of information about this Walmart on the Internet!

Here are a couple pictures from last week:

Walmart Shrewsbury MO Kenrick Plaza - empty parking lot

This is the front of the completed Walmart building, with a completely empty parking lot. I'm guessing this will be a rare sight, judging by every other Walmart I've seen.

Kenrick Plaza outlot behind First Bank

New outlot that's just west of the First Bank building. I don't know if there are any tenants signed up for the spaces in this building yet, but it's coming up quickly, since the major construction work on the new Walmart is pretty much complete.

Teaching Ansible with six Raspberry Pis

Originally posted on the Server blog:

Over the course of this year, I've acquired six Raspberry Pi model 2 B computers, and configured them in a cluster (or 'bramble') so I can use them to test different infrastructure configurations, mostly for running Drupal 8. All the Ansible playbooks and instructions for building the cluster are available on the GitHub project page for the Raspberry Pi Dramble. [...]

The video demonstrates Ansible's simple and powerful model of SSH-based infrastructure management visually. It's been a lot of fun building the Dramble and hacking both the hardware and the software to make this presentation possible!

And the video, Ansible 101 - on a cluster of Raspberry Pi 2s:

High Performance Drupal - Speaking at DrupalCamp STL.15

I'll be speaking at DrupalCamp St. Louis 2015 at SLU LAW this weekend. My session, High Performance Drupal, will cover many quick performance wins for Drupal sites, and will fix an example site that simulates many performance problems seen on real-world Drupal sites.

Sorry it's been so long since posting here—I'm still working on my book, I've read through about 5 other books, and as always, I'm tinkering with a bunch of Raspberry Pis!


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