A week ago I rang in my twenty-ninth birthday and entered that twilight zone prior to thirty. It was an exciting day, I got to fly a plane, dogfight another, and do some aerobatics like a tumble, which was pretty much the coolest thing ever. Unusually for me, I managed to stay away from my computer the entire weekend, instead spending time eating, drinking, and dancing with a few friends who were also in Las Vegas. I came back online to some very sweet birthday blogs (thank you Lorelle, Austin, and John!) and of course a number of nice messages on Facebook and Twitter. All in all, extremely pleasant.

I travelled more this year than I ever have before, covering 261,077 miles in 292 days away from San Francisco (79 cities, 11 countries).

From the outside my life sometimes can appear crazy, and my 20s have been atypical in many ways, but one of the things I appreciate the most about this past year is that things have been getting less hectic overall. Much of this I attribute technology which I’ve finally gotten to a point where the majority of it in my life serves to allow me to spend doing things I love, like writing, designing, coding, learning, and less time on infrastructure or overhead.

The most interesting thing about twenty-nine so far is I’ve been getting lots of tips from people on how to end my 20s, which usually fall under “go out with a bang” from people currently in their 20s and “don’t worry it just gets better from here” from people in their 30s.

My focus this year will be on simplification and streamlining. As in many years past, I find I’m the most balanced when I take time every day to read, especially in the morning, and as an additional resolution this year I’m trying to watch a film every week recommended by friends. (So far have seen My Fair Lady, Casablanca, King Corn, and American President.)

All birthday posts: 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40.

22 thoughts on “Twenty-Nine

  1. You continue to impress me with you genuineness “Young Man” … Refreshing to say tbe least. πŸ™‚ I wish you many more years of reflection and philanthropy.

  2. Awesome birthday chronicles.

    I had a big quarter life crisis at 25 after my first startup failed.. 28 ATM and hoping to accomplish something significant by 30 πŸ™‚

    Good Cinema: check out “In the Mood for Love” It’s a film from Hong Kong by Wong Kar-wai.

  3. Happy belated birthday!!!! What about your 27th birthday resolution… “Finally upload my un-uploaded photos for 2005-2010.” I would like to see your photos of WordCamp Germany (Jena – Feb 09) Regards, Nick

  4. So what you’re saying is that you’re in that awkward place between 20 and 30 where nobody thinks you’re in your 20’s and nobody thinks you’re in your 30’s.

    You’re an outsider. Own it.

  5. Happy belated again, Matt.

    And I’m laughing as I read the last sentence. A goal of mine started this summer was to take time for losing myself in movies on a regular basis, something I lost after I turned thirty. You just named the movies I watched this year.

    The one thing I know to be true are the words from those who say it gets better each decade. It does. It doesn’t seem like it, but 40 will be better than 30. There may be a slight dip, but 50 will be even better. However it works, enjoy every moment. It’s the only one you will have. πŸ˜€

  6. Hi Matt,

    Congratulations on your 29th! Not many have such an old head, perched on such young shoulders.

    I remember an episode from the TV series, Kung Fu, where the star, as a young lad, is asked by his blind Master Po, to close his eyes and to them tell him what he hears. His reply was that he didn’t hear much of anything – at which point the Master asks if he hears the grasshopper chirping at his feet.

    “How is it old man”, the young lad asks, “that you can hear it”? The master’s reply: “Young man, how is it, you can not?”

    May you always hear the grasshoppers, Matt.

    With best regards,

    Fred Parry

  7. Well, I’ll be another voice of “it just gets better in your thirties.” Actually, my thirtieth birthday was the best six weeks of my life. (Yes, you read that correctly.)

    Happy belated birthday, Matt! Here’s to a fantastic year. πŸ™‚

  8. wow happy belated bday! i feel like a day dreamer, you 29 busy changing the world passionately, me slightly few years behind… haven’t got my bang yet.