From the mind (and hands) of Chris Gwilliams

How to look after this anxious hound =====

Born: 2017 Race: Mixed Nationality: Italian Weight: 20kg Eats: – Brit Care weight loss/Acana/Frolic soft (soft dry food): 1 cup – Can also eat 1 packet of wet food with dry food if he is being picky

Daily Routine

  • Between 6 and 8am: Walk
  • 830am: Breakfast (dry food)
  • Between 3 and 5pm: Walk
  • 530pm: Dinner (dry food)
  • Between 9 and 1030pm: Night time pee


Saying this is an excited, slightly high whisper is the best way to make him responsive.

  • Sit (point downwards or click your fingers)
  • Spin (after sitting, rotate your finger clockwise)
  • Twirl (after sitting, rotate your finger anticlockwise)
  • Down (flat hand lowered to the floor)
  • Roll (after down, rotate your hand)
  • Wait (hand up, flat palm)
  • Suche/Search/Go get it (after wait, to retrieve a treat)
  • Up (onto your chest, double tap it as you say it)
  • Up (Point to a log/bench/wall as you say it)


  • Not allowed on the bed (up to you if you want to enforce)
  • No jumping up without being told
  • Should sit and wait before being fed
  • Wet food can be used but should be limited
  • Should be pulled off of other dogs and leave area if he attempts to mount multiple times

What to do when...

  • He has ticks – Once you have stopped screaming and calling him, “disgusting”, there is a tick remover in the zipped pocket of the treat pouch; grip it and twist, if you get legs and head then you are better than I am at removing them
  • He will not walk – Sometimes he may stop for no reason or try to pull in a different direction. As long as he is wearing the orange harness then just continue to pull him until he starts to walk with you (do not worry if you have to pull quite hard!)
  • He does not eat – Soaking his food in cold/warm water for a while can help sometimes. He also struggles to eat if there is a lot of movement so you may find he will eat when you sit down to eat. This is perfectly ok and it is ok to leave his food out if he does not eat it right away
  • He vomits – Firstly, sorry! Second, do not worry unless it has happened more than 2 or 3 times.


  • Bald, larger men 🤷‍♀️
  • Loud noises
  • Noisy packaging
  • Large objects moving
  • Vacuum cleaners


  • Does shed quite a lot of hair
  • Might not want to walk sometimes or leave owner; pulling the harness is perfectly ok in that case

  • Labyrinth Park
    • Strongly recommended, very cheap and quite empty in mid afternoon
    • Escape room is cool and mini golf is free if you finish the max
  • Agios Nikolaos – Small town with a lake close to ocean
    • Town that the Spinalonga boat leaves from
    • Nice but maybe not worth the visit otherwise
  • Sissi Port
  • Boufos Beach
  • Animals
    • Amazonas Wildlife Park
    • Cretaquarium
  • Water parks
  • Historical
    • Malia Minoan Palace – From 1900 BC
    • Monastery of Areti – Active monastery
    • Dikteon / Psychro Cave – Birthplace of Zeus
      • Long walk but recommended
    • Spinalonga Island – Take a ferry to the old leper colony
      • full day but very recommended. The island is cool and the boat stops for an ocean swim
  • Horse Riding
  • Richtis Waterfall
  • Snorkelling – Dis Island


  • Maximum 5 video games
  • Maximum 3 gadgets/hardware
  • Maximum 15 books/audiobooks

Food / Drinks

  • Max 6 bottles of carbonated drinks per month
  • No sweets

This is still in a draft phase but some notes on who I would like to be in 2021 and how I could envision that happening. More importantly, the why behind them; the reasons I feel compelled to do them. Hopefully these reasons will spur me on beyond the plateaus and setting this post as my homepage will allow me to see them throughout the year.

Achieve German B1 by September / Able to hold a 5 minute conversation

  • [ ] Identify weaknesses and make a learning plan around them
  • 15 mins / day 3x / week
  • 1 physical lesson per week / join course
  • ### Why
    • I am self conscious of my lack of ability
    • I stopped to avoid frustration at my plateau
    • Paradox of choice from too many apps I have paid for stops me
    • I lack some fundamental knowledge that prevents me moving further
    • I am embarrassed that I do not know some key language concepts in my native language

Increase strength and fitness

  • More workouts using body strength 3x / week
  • Climbing at least 1x / week
  • ### Why
    • Lack of strength prevents climbing progress
    • Strength contributes to fitness
    • A change in physical appearance may motivate better eating habits
    • Focusing on something non digital is a positive

Reduce weight by 14kg

  • No fizzy drinks
  • No artificial snacks after dinner
  • Maybe fasting?
  • Find alternative to running for cardio (cycling?)
  • ### Why
    • Reliance on sugar for energy / narcolepsy is an issue
    • Eating habits are unhealthy and do not always bring enjoyment
    • I am not happy in my own body
    • Current fitness level causes anxiety from excess sweating

Achieve 5 things outside of work this year

  • Side projects / Learning / Hackathons, they all count
  • Work fixed hours, ignore things outside of work hours
  • ### Why
    • I need to learn not to be defined by my job
      • nor by my unhealthy attachment to it
    • These things do not need to be digital and could encourage time away from devices
    • Varied interests have been shown to change or improve one’s own mental models

Complete Solutions Architect Course for AWS

  • ### Why
    • Official recognition of achievements at work
    • Useful in future career
    • Regimented study plan helps towards planning

Be more aware

  • Review things regularly
    • Time management
    • Notes made
  • Meditate 10mins / day 7x / week
  • Ask why before acting
  • ### Why
    • Slower reaction times allows more time to contemplate
      • More likely to respond closer to my true self and not impulsively
    • More conscientious of my own actions
    • Ability to explain myself and the thought processes behind them
      • More in tune with myself

Increase reliance on self / Consume less

  • If I can do it myself, do it
  • Reduce subscriptions and external tools
  • One thing for one task
    • i.e. One tool for tasks, one for calendar etc
  • ### Why
    • Reduce frustration from overload
    • Reduce amount of content / notes / thoughts spread throughout services
    • Increase trust and positive view of myself

As an avid self-help book reader (and ignorer of all advice they offer), I have gone through “Designing your life” by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans. Unsurprisingly, I ignored their exercises, words of wisdom and tips for life.

While waiting in an airport, I looked through books that would be better than the 2 I had already packed for myself and I saw “Designing your Work Life”. In the same act of hopefulness, I bought it and set it aside for an indeterminate period of time.

In an effort to “fix” myself amidst common issues I am struggling with at work, in life and in general, I started the book yesterday with the specific goal of following their steps. Note-taking is an unsolved problem for me so doing the first exercises make the most sense here; with the added benefit of public accountability.

Page 51 describes two exercises to figure out your purposes for work and life (or write them down if you already know them) where you write a 250 word manifesto of your Workview and Lifeview that answer a series of thought-provoking questions. So, here we go:


Why work?

Let's ignore the obvious, “because we have to” and instead say that, if we can, we choose a career early in life in an area that interests us. Sometimes we are forced into it but we do work out of a necessity to work in order to survive. Yes, we can find some public land and grow crops on it but that it also leaving your life behind as well.

What is work for?

To provide a minimum quality of life that allows you to utilise your free time in ways that are not restricted. To allow contributions to a system that, in theory, takes care of worries that we have moved past as humans (healthcare, transport, infrastructure, services).

What does work mean?

Work should mean that it is a task you give more than eighty thousand hours of your life to and it provides learning experiences, gratitude and fulfilment such that you want to spend your time with it; regardless of the money.

How does it relate to an individual, others, society?

I suppose it relates here because a job can be necessary for society to function but does not provide much motivation for an individual to work it; or that society creates a hierarchy based on these positions and metadata associated with them. To an individual, it should not be something you dread or crave time away from.

What defines good or worthwhile work?

Humans are short-sighted and selfish creatures by nature, this is not a bad thing in itself but it does mean that good work first has to benefit the worker; which could be in the form of seeing their impact or altruism, but it can also be financial or otherwise. I believe worthwhile work leaves the area of that work measurably cleaner/better than before; something that is not causing harm (or minimising it) and providing the greatest benefit to the majority.

What does money have to do with it?

Unless Capitalism somehow fails overnight, it is necessary in order to function within society, as well as to provide for those outside of your immediate circle (through taxes towards social housing, public healthcare, homeless initiatives etc or direct donations). It needs to be enough to allow you to live a lifestyle that you (and those dependent on you) can live in comfort without fearing a surprise bill or how to eat for the next week.

What does experience, fulfilment and growth have to do with it?

It is secondary. When you are in the position where you can select from a number of open positions that all reach your financial needs then you are able to select a position based on what it offers you; whether that is learning to stay relevant for future positions or for personal growth. The fulfilment is the part that, I believe, makes you stay in a position for 2 decades vs 2 months; feeling appreciated, recognised or required in a position that has meaning in your life is going to remove the dread one feels before the work day and increase your productivity.


Why are we here?

I believe this is random and there is no specific reason we are here.

What is the meaning/purpose of life?

As above, any meaning we have is/must be created by ourselves. If there is a purpose beyond what we make for ourselves, then it would likely be to reproduce and continue.

What is the relationship between individuals and others?

Humans are social animals. We benefit from others and our worldview is improved/expanded when we surround ourselves with different people. Other people are necessary for an individual to experience a life beyond the filter bubble of their own mind.

Where do family, country and the rest of the world fit in?

I wish I had a positive view here but I believe people prioritise themselves first and then those within their immediate circle naturally. If we were able to take actions where we had the same compassion for the world and its inhabitants as we did for ourselves then behaviour would be good in general.

What is good? What is evil?

Evil is an easy one: an action that causes harm (and where the consequences are known) but provides little/no benefit for the individual(s) carrying it out. Applying that definition to actions is subjective, however. For example, is the mother torturing and beheading the person that sexually assaulted and murderer her child evil?

In the same vein, an organisation/government/individual that tells a lie to the public in order to cover up damage to the environment is evil. While there is a benefit for them (continued profits), the consequences are far greater.

Good is less easy to define. A person may have committed adultery earlier in the day and then that guilt forced them to assist an elderly person with chores. Is that good? I guess if you do not connect other actions and instead judge each in isolation then it is easier. Can an action be good if the motivation do the action is not?

Do I believe in a higher power? How does that belief affect my life?

No, I do not. It makes me angry that some do but I know that is through my own experiences with religion. I am frustrated that Catholicism can still exist when it has contributed to thousands of child abuse cases globally and misused donations from those that could barely spare to provide them. It makes me more pessimistic in general, it frustrates me that my father turned to Christianity more when he realised his terminal brain tumour truly was terminal. If I could have faith then I would be able to see a greater plan in actions. Right now, I see the majority of human impact as negative and progressively destroying a planet when we are aware of the consequences. That action is evil, even if the individuals are not (in particular the huge majority that have no choice but to live in a destructive manner).

Checking out a individual folders (or files) of a Git repository

git init
git remote add origin $URL
git config core.sparsecheckout true
git sparse-checkout set $DIR #check with git sparse-checkout list
git pull origin $BRANCH

After 10 years of questioning everything I did and seeing it as some sort of fixed thing that I had no power of, I have finally started coming around to the idea that I am in control but I am also crap at knowing what the right thing to do is.

Long wait for a game to load? Check the phone. Travelling for work? Buy all the crap food and never sleep. Alone for some days? Chat online or try to organise a casual sex meet-up. In a relationship? Justify it to yourself.

Truthfully, I never considered the fact that my obsessions with checking Product Hunt, Hacker News or Reddit had any correlation to my need to look for casual sex or just to feel wanted/validated by someone; let alone my need to consume every piece of Haribo or MSG soaked Dominos slice ever created.

Today, it did. I woke up, sweating, after falling asleep at 5am and consuming almost 500g of Haribo 30 minutes before then. In a mess of hormones and emotions that have been expertly hidden for years, I had organised a rendezvous with a lady in a hotel the day before. As always, my conscience thankfully took hold and cancelled. Great, right? Good for me!

Wrong, on so many levels. Here are a few: – I wasted this lady's time and potentially caused a loss of income – I am in a relationship and this creates a whole mess of distrust – I wasted money on a hotel local to me – Getting to this stage often is not a victory, by any means

The sole positive is that sobering realisation of not wanting to do it then causes me (for a few hours) to have the feeling of getting my life into gear. It creates a focus and a will that is usually felt (and shortly lost thereafter) when watching an inspiring movie.

These same emotions that cause me to consume 60g of sugar are the very same that cause me to spend thousands of dollars on gadgets or apps I will never need.

This constant urge for more, that now is not enough is not treated by a quick fuck in a hotel, by someone whispering 'I love you' in your ear, or by a large dose of MSG. It is mine to own, to understand and to work on; something I have avoided for far too long.

Adding Shortcuts in Linux manually

When you get a gzipped tar file as an application (I am looking at you, Firefox Dev Edition), it is not so easy to add shortcuts for it; especially if you use a tiling window manager.

So, here is a quick reference for you (and me):

  1. Extract the folder to /opt/<APP_NAME>

  2. Create a symbolic link from the executable to /usr/local/bin

ln -sf /opt/<APP_NAME>/<EXEC_FILE> /usr/local/bin/

  1. Create a desktop file in /usr/share/applications/<APP_NAME>.desktop
[Desktop Entry]

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