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Today was a Good Day

Posted on July 8th, 2015

Have you ever had one of those days where everything or almost everything goes well? Today was one of those days for me. It’s nice to document them, so you can look back, for example, when you are having a not so good day, and remember that “Mama said there’d days like this” where “this” means good, bad and / or ugly. Here is how it went down.

I started off the day with a great chest and shoulder workout. It feels great to be hitting the weight room consistently. My post-workout sustenance was provided by Smoothie King in the form of a medium High Protein Almond Mocha with Banana. There was a small emergency when I discovered that there was a hole in my straw. No problem - a spoon from the kitchen came to the rescue. The morning proved to be productive with meetings, coding, and working on a talk / presentation that I was giving later in the day. My co-worker’s last day was today, so he and his wife kindly / surprisingly decided to take me out for lunch. We had tacos at Tin Lizzy’s. Their guacamole leaves an unpleasant after-taste in your mouth. The queso and tacos were good though. You typically can’t go wrong with queso and tacos.

The afternoon was spent fighting taco-induced ‘itis while working on the slides for my talk and code reviewing my soon-to-be-departing co-worker’s work. I ended up performing a dry run of my talk to a couple co-workers, and I got critical and valuable feedback. Later in the afternoon, I interviewed a great candidate for an engineering position that we [Kevy] are trying to fill. The interview went amazingly well - the candidate asked great questions and was a joy to talk to.

In the evening, I headed over to ATDC in Tech Square for my first Atlanta Ruby User’s Group (ATLRUG) meeting. I was the second presenter. I gave my talk entitled, “How Kevy Uses Elasticsearch to Build Real-time Reporting.” It was my first technical talk in front of an audience of other software engineers. I’ve had the pleasure of working with some of the faces in the crowd during my time at BNR. I look(ed) up to some of them, so it was slightly daunting to be presenting to them. It was surreal and exhilarating.

Thankfully, they only know how to be supportive and kind, and my talk was received well (per Twitter):

My last stop of the day was the soccer field. I arrived late; there were only about 5 minutes left in the first half. The score was 1-1. We turned that 1-1 tie into a 3-1 lead by the time the ref blew the halftime whistle. In the second half, we extended the lead to 5-2, but our opponents are really skilled players and they applied a lot of pressure on us. They methodically scored 3 goals to tie the game with about 3 minutes left.

We could have easily settled for the tie, but we kept fighting. With 1 minute left, we got a lucky break. My teammate’s errant pass ricocheted off a defender’s shin right into my path on the left side of the 6-yard box. I swiveled to the right, leaving my defender for dead, and took a couple steps toward the ball. I had one thing on my mind - shoot. I slid as I put my left-foot through the ball. I couldn’t see ball since the keeper and defender blocked my line of sight, but a split-second later, I saw the ball was perfectly nestled in the back of the net. The game-winning goal came in the last minute of the game. We needed that win. It has been a rough season.

The night ended with me on the couch stuffing my face while recounting the day’s events to Kat. Looking back, there were a few elements that made my day:

Ice Cube said it best:

Today was like one of those fly dreams.
Didn’t even see a berry flashing those high beams.
No helicopter looking for a murder
2 in the morning, got the Fatburger
Even saw the lights of the Goodyear Blimp
And it read “Ice Cube’s a Pimp”
Drunk as hell but no throwing up
Half way home and my pager still blowing up
Today I didn’t even have to use my AK
I got to say it was a good day

About

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Hi, I'm Don Pottinger.

I love building things with computers. At 10 years old, I wrote my first program using BASIC. I built my first computer when I was 12 years old.

I graduated from Georgia Institute of Technology with a BS in Electrical and Computer Engineering. I have a background as a technology consultant and software engineer.

Now, I'm a Customer Engineer at Google.

Also, I'm the founder and CEO of Lytham Labs. Lytham Labs helps businesses sell more with marketing automation, predictive analytics, and artificial intelligence tools. My primary product, Kevy, is a marketing automation platform for eCommerce retailers.

I live in Atlanta with my amazing wife and kids. For fun, I play too much soccer and follow my favorite clubs, FC Barcelona and Arsenal F.C.

My CV so far

  • Cloud Engineer at Google (2019 - Present)
  • Founder and CEO at Kevy (2014 - Present)
  • Co-founder and Head of Technical Development of Body Boss Fitness (2010 - Present)
  • Engineering Manager and Software Engineer at Big Nerd Ranch (2012 - 2014)
  • IT and Management Consultant for Accenture and Slalom Consulting (2008 - 2012)
  • Graduate of Georgia Tech with BS in Electrical and Computer Engineering (2008)

Facts About Me

  • I was born in Jamaica and raised in the United States.
  • I speak English, Spanish and Jamaican Patois.
  • I love to travel. So far, I've visited Peru, Argentina, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Greece, France, Italy, Canada, Jamaica, Hawaii, Mexico and England.