My thirty-second birthday has arrived after a whirlwind year, probably my most challenging and rewarding. It went faster than any year I can remember, absolutely flew by. Luckily it was capped at the holidays with a precious few weeks of downtime in Houston. Now I’m back to work in Cape Town and just finished a lovely day of great food, wine, and conversation with colleagues who are here for a meetup starting tomorrow.

Since I started tracking, 2015 was the first year that I traveled fewer miles than the year before, clocking in at 398k, down 27k. (398,553 miles, 111 cities, 20 countries.) In 2016 I’m going to try and get that even lower. It was also one of my best years for blogging on this site, with the most posts (252) I’ve made since 2008, and the most words (24,605) since 2005. (If anyone is curious, I wrote about 60k words over the same time period in Automattic’s internal P2s.) In a weird omission, though, it’s the first year since this site started in 2002 that I didn’t post a single gallery of photos. I’ve developed a mental block around processing and posting the fancier pictures, even as I carry hundreds of gigabytes of them around the planet several times over. Hopefully this is something I can get past in 2016.

I ran 163 miles in 2015, more than I did the year before, and I think that trend will continue. Last year I talked about habits and small actions, and a daily todo list with some small items to nourish the mind, soul, and body has become central to my routine. I dyed my hair (grey) just for fun and also to show the rest of Automattic they could too, how you look doesn’t matter one iota. My restaurant quest has continued, and I’ve now been to 38% of the current top 50 list.

More so than before, I really don’t know what’s around the corner. While there is a lot in motion, there is even more still being defined and started. There’s freedom in the groove, to reference Joshua Redman’s great album, and I’m getting a lot more comfortable with ambiguity and the faster pace of life in general. More than ever, I consider myself incredibly lucky, so it’s exciting to make the most of the opportunity that the volatility, love, loss, glory, failure, inspirations, and setbacks that 2016 will bring.

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.

31 thoughts on “Thirty-Two

  1. Happy Birthday Matt. I remember reading your 31st birthday post, the year has really gone in a whirlwind.
    You are just 2 years older than me but the impact you have made on the industry is truly inspiring.

  2. Always interesting to read your birthday posts. I think I followed them since your 22th birthday. I hope you come by Copenhagen again soon. Give us a heads up, if you do. We got some exiting stuff happening in the danish WordPress community this year.


    Coordinator, WordPress Denmark

  3. Happy birthday, Matt! I’m sure you’ll have a fantastic year ahead and maybe this year it’s time for WordPress to become 32(%), as well. 🙂

  4. Happy birthday Matt! Big respect for the self-expression awareness you brought with the simple act of dying your hair. Fielded that question about it at WCUS very well too. Keep on keeping on!

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  6. Do yourself a favour and try one of the best coffee shops in the world…Rosetta Roastery, 66 Albert Road, Woodstock, Cape Town

  7. Matt, I hope your Birthday groove has been totally awesome! You REALLY put the “log” in “blog!” What don’t you keep track of?!?! LOL

    You would have to mention Joshua Redman, eh? Any chance of getting some sax tips out of you this year? I know–with 25% of the Internet on your back–you don’t have time to shed, but what would you practice if you did?

    Playing over short, seamless loops (2-8 bars) of recordings and BIAB has made the biggest impact on my playing to date. Listening to, and then singing along with, a two- or four-bar loop–AWAY from the horn–has worked wonders. Synthetic reeds have saved me a ton of time. I make my own Aebersolds in BIAB, again focusing on short loops. As far as books, Viola, McLean, McGhee, Fishman, Bergonzi and Aebersold…for starters. Ear training (transcribing w/ Joe Henderson method) and memorization are my musical goals for this year. Too much information…

    Groove on, Matt! WP-4-Life!!!

    1. Sounds like you’re on a roll, I don’t have anything to add to that. 🙂 I’m going to try and spend some time this year with other instruments like guitar and piano to get my chops up a bit there, be able todo at least some basic songs.

      1. Thanks so much for the reply, Mr. Motivator! Hope you’re still enjoying your Birthday groove, fellow Capricorn. 🙂

        You’re way, waaaay too modest, Matt. “Basic songs…” LOL!!!! I’ve been playing (trying) lots of piano with my wife and hitting the horns really hard. Making up for lost time. Soprano helps tenor a lot.

        Plenty of great horns in Chicago right now… Joshua R. is on Drupal 7… Would love to change that…

        Looking forward to WordCamp Chicago!

        Rock, on Matt! We’re very thankful for WordPress!