Hi, I’m Johannes. In this blog as with most other online communications and all things coding I go with jmchor my full name is more reserved for alert situations, government documents or job applications.

image The cat and I with a fun RGB filter

I work as a Support Engineer for a software/marketing company based in Wiesbaden, which entails tech support, troubleshooting, testing and a fraction of actual coding. I am what they call a “Quereinsteiger” - which means that I’m millenial-ing my way through live. What it actually means is that after finishing school I did my undergraduate in Cultural Studies and Political and Social Studies, and followed that up with a post-grad in Cultural Studies. Afterwards, I spent a few years teaching Cultural Studies (at the same university) while also supporting myself as a service worker at the hospital cafeteria of the same university. Doing a doctoral thesis proved to be too much of an effort (as in: no matter how I went about it I couldn’t pinpoint a subject matter I actually deeply cared about to spent four years working on it without pay), so I decided to be done with the academic path and got myself a job in Mainz, and worked as media analyst for four years.

Those four years were interrupted by ever longer spells of parental leave, since in 2021 our kid was born, and that’s that. And as having children goes, it comes with a profound reality check (which is a nice word for “midlife crisis”) and I decided that I didn’t want to spend the majority of my daylight hours with a job I didn’t like. So, with the support of family I was able to do a six-month bootcamp course in web development - having dabbled with the basic techniques of HTML and CSS in the months before - and also reaching out for jobs while still studying. And that’s how I found my current job: by applying for a dev job, not quite matching the skill set, and being referred to a different team that is more in the software maintenance 6 tech support field. Little did anyone know: taking problems apart and exercising my need for control (a different issue) on those issues and then presenting whoever had the problem with a viable solution is DEFINITELY in my wheelhouse.

Which is also why I write blogs. This particaluar one is my fourth one, I believe; the first two I never published. For the third one I used Ghost, and was very happy - but I decided to go even more control-y on everthing and use Hugo. I had a freaking blast finetuning every little thing about the theme (go Papermod!) and usability that I wanted.

A bit more about myself: I’m a 33 year old German, husband, dad, animal companion (three cats), and I have a few different hobbies. With a lot of work and support of my partner I worked out that I tend to make any hobby a chore, and so I try to exercise only a few of them and not on a daily basis in order to enjoy things.

But one of these hobbies is definitely programming - I LOVE coding, coming up with solutions to a need I might have or see somewhere, or fixing the inevitable “why are you doing this, Back-to-Top-button?!"-issue. I also really like the sysadmin-components of things, like understanding why and how a computer does what it does in order to make programs run and such.

I really enjoy drumming, and after a longer hiatus from serious practicing (about 15 years) I rediscovered working on my technical drumming skills early in 2022, and I’m enjoying it tremendously. With drumming also came a “diversification” of my musical taste - in a sense, since it’s still mostly metal I like to listen to. But I definitely went out of my way to get some cool old/new bands in there (I mean, like Lamb of God or The Mars Volta, or one of my favorites, The Dillinger Escape Plan, or Dave Weckl, who joined my favorites like Slipknot, KraftKlub, Demons & Wizards, Kreator and Heaven Shall Burn, just to name a few).

Currently, I’m also playing in two bands - both of them cover bands, both of them rock (none of them have anything to do with the bands I just listed) - overall, interpreting songs from artists between 1980 and 2010.

Reading. Reading has always been very big with me, and I enjoy the paper kind over the e-paper kind, but I do both - at times more intensely than others. Currently, I’m reading the Dan Brown books again, cause they feel very familiar to me, and I do enjoy them somewhat flat scandalist enthusiasm in them. My all time favorites include Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath” and Neal Stephenson’s “Cryptonomicon” as well as the Harry Potter series. There are probably a lot more, but those I could read over and over again.

I like cooking, but not in a way where I would cook for hours and call that an enjoyable time. I know how to cook and what I like, and then I do that and the food tastes good, but that’s it.

I’m a vegan, and I follow ethical veganism wherever possible. I strongly advocate for animals rights and a stop to the exploitation of any animal, be it human or not. Together with my partner we’re organizing a meetup for vegans in our vicinity, for building community and undertaking fun activist things.

In this blog, I want to share thoughts and opinions, musings, observations, and just also kind of leave my footprint on the internet - I mean, of course that’s not really necessary. Google does that for me quite efficiently, I assume, and the rest do their part - Facebook and Tesla and so on. But with Papertrails, I want to do that according to my rules.

So have fun! Or don’t.

I’m a blog, not a cop.