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Kevin Kline

Goals and Theme Word for 2010


I've been really intrigued by a meme making the rounds of the blogsphere concerning goals for the coming year and picking a theme word, rather than the usual New Year's resolution.

Et tu, Brento?
Et tu, BrentO?

As with all memes, they start with a blogger picking the topic of discussion (in this case, Tara Hunt at HPC) and was picked up by my friend, Tom LaRock ( blog | twitter) in his blog post, Why I Don't Like Kevin Kline and Never Tag Him in Memes.

As in all memes, one blogger starts it off and then others are tagged, spreading the chain outward.  So Tom tagged several other good friends of mine, all of whom also chose to ignore me including: Brent Ozar (blog | twitter), Jeremiah Peschka (blog | twitter), Tim Ford (blog | twitter), and Jason Massie (blog | twitter) in their respective blog posts.  So here's the chain of the mem a couple levels deep:

Where's the love, I ask?

Oh, and just to whine a bit more - you can read some other good entries in this meme by Kendal Van Dyke here and Tim Mitchell here.


Not Nefarious.  Multifarious!
Not Nefarious. Multifarious!

I love it that so many of my friends are focusing not only on their technology skills and professional stature, but also on their family life and spiritual life.  I've long believed that specialization was for insects, but we - as human beings - are multifaceted and have manifold skills and traits that need to be cultivated.  There's no reason an educated and urbane 21st century American can't be physically fit, in tune with their family and significant other, able to write a cheesy line of verse, sing a few bars of a popular song, take a decent picture, repair a broken toaster, and do some on-line banking.  As others have said before me, our parents and grandparents had one career and one employer.  That's not our lot in life.

So my theme word for 2010 is MULTIFARIOUS.

Pretty weird, eh?

When I first encountered the word multifarious, I thought of the word nefarious.  Nefarious means "bad or evil", so I thought multifarious meant "lotsa bad or evil".  In fact, they're antonyms.  Multifarious, in its Latin roots, means "many" plus "goodies" while nefarious means "negative or not" plus "goodies".

So if you can think of another word that means "having many different parts, elements, or forms; numerous and varied; greatly diverse or manifold", then I want to use that one.  In the meantime, my theme word is multifarious because 2010 is my year of focusing on many elements, some long-neglected, in my life.


Like many of the other folks I teased earlier, I have a variety of goals - some related to work (and therefore technology) and some not.

Every child needs a little 1-on-1. Even Little Critter by Mercer Mayer
Every child needs a little 1-on-1. Even Little Critter by Mercer Mayer
  • Personal Goals: In 2010, I'm working on some entirely non-technology goals because I frankly feel a little too much dehumanized by technology. I want to put some humanity back into my life.  So here are a few quick hit goals:
    • Fresh berries are very expensive, but berry bushes are not.  The strawberries are already in and blackberries are a goal this spring.  There's something very primal about digging in the dirt that reconnects us with the earth and our agrarian roots.
    • I used to be a very accomplished Spanish guitarist - about 20 years ago.  Twenty years of abstention puts the ol' guitar skills at zero.  I'm going to pick up the guitar and get at least three of those back.
    • I intend to master at least a half-dozen knots.  Knots?  Yes, knots - the kind you make with laces, rope, or twine.  Hey, I've got seven kids in the house and you never know when a half-hitch sheep-shank will come in handy to lash several of them to a chair, the stair rail, or in a moment of dire need, a toilet.
    • I intend to spend at least one weekend of one-on-one time with each of my kids and step-kids.  I don't really believe in the concept of quality time, since as many learning moments come when dad bangs his thumb with a hammer as from any other so-called special time.  But in this unusually large family with distractions nearly every waking moment, I still want to set asidea little time under the label "Just Dad and Me".
    • Zero consumer debt except for the mortgage. (Dave Ramsey is my hero!)
    • Somehow - some way - I want to get a worm-eye-view photo of any man wearing a kilt at the PASS 2010 Summit.  Strictly for blackmail purposes.  (Grant and Steve, you're on notice!)
  • Diversification Goals: Here are a few goals for 2010 that relate to my livelihood, but are not part of my day job.
    • At least one major new book for this year.  I frequently gripe about the ROI of book writing these days.  However, there are still a few powerful topics to address.  So, with that in mind, I have one technology book ready to pitch and, believe it or not, one non-technology book.
    • Improve my personal productivity - somehow, someway.  Maybe more caffeine?
    • Revamp my personal website.  It's visually rather dull at the moment.
    • I developed a lot of new personal skills in 2009, like wiring and electronics.  I'm continuing that because I'm also very close to filing my very first provisional patent (non-IT, believe it or not).  I'll blog about that whole process in much greater details when the time is right. But this is my biggest diversification goal for 2010.
    • Retool my presentation style to be story-driven, rather than bulletpoint-driven.  I felt like I've given some useful and informative presentations over the years.  But I can do better and I know it.  I've always been drawn to the old Southern tradition of story-telling and I'd like to bring that to life in my presentations.  That goal starts immediately since I have presentations almost every week and, while it might get easier with time, it'll never go away as a goal.

So that's a wrap for me.  I don't have any specific goals about number of presentations, blogposts, or podcasts (though I want to do as much as I can).  Sure, I want to continue to actively present, blog, write, tweet, digg, scribble, podcast, and otherwise excrete goodness into both print and the Internet. 


Why, yes, there is one other thing. It's a meme, right?  So that means I need to tag a few others.  First, I want to beseech those already tagged to go ahead and share with us - Joe, Andy, Jason, and Michelle.  Please give us your wisdom!

Next, I'm going to tag a few friends in hopes of nudging them into another blog post, cause all of these folks are t'awesome but don't blog enough:

Ok, team, bring the thunder.



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Published Thursday, January 14, 2010 9:35 PM by KKline

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SQLRockstar said:

you know Kevin, it's not always about you.

Great post, thanks for sharing.

January 14, 2010 10:21 PM

Jorge Segarra said:

Lol well-done! I'll see what I can do about bringing Jess along to another SQL event. She's very non-geeky and last time I brought her to a SQLSaturday city with me she almost died of boredom waiting for me to wrap up the Geekfest!

January 14, 2010 10:39 PM

Anonymous said:

Are you certain that Jonathan doesn't blog enough? He posted twice as many posts as you did in December and is one ahead of you for January so far :-)

January 15, 2010 9:40 AM

Lori Edwards said:

I realize that Tim and I blog Borg style and, in the way that it's set up on SQLServerPedia, it looks like we both write all posts as one, I did write up my own goals and theme word (yes, different from Tim, imagine!)  Unfortunately, I didn't tag you. I will be sure to tag you many, many times in the future.

January 15, 2010 11:12 AM

KKline said:

Lori, I'm just joking around. You don't need to tag me. But I thought it'd be a fun (and hopefully funny) segue into telling my own goals.


January 15, 2010 2:52 PM

Lori Edwards said:

Kevin - I knew you were joking.  This is one of the funniest posts I've read in awhile.  Thanks for the laughs.  I will tag you in the future though...

January 16, 2010 1:56 PM

Gail said:

Don't worry Kevin, no one tagged me either for this one (though I wrote a goals post anyway)

January 17, 2010 4:30 AM

KKline said:

Gail, I hereby pledge to tag you more often! =^)  I will also attempt to extract humor - at your expense - wherever possible.  (grin)  But I know you're a good sport.

Best regards,


January 19, 2010 7:10 PM

dfgerer said:

August 23, 2018 1:14 AM

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About KKline

Kevin Kline is a well-known database industry expert, author, and speaker. Kevin is a long-time Microsoft MVP and was one of the founders of PASS,

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