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Bryan Monzon

websites & triathlons
Fifty & Fifty

New Job Title

Recently I was promoted. That’s not saying much in a company of 12, but it is pretty cool. My title is now Vice President of Engineering.

For all intents and purposes, my job hasn’t changed much at all. I get a fancy title now that really only affects first impressions and a client’s perception/understanding of my role at Fifty and Fifty.

It’s exciting to think about where I’ve come from and where I’m headed. I was chatting with my friend from college, Dairien. He and I were in the same web and interactive media program at the Art Institute of California, San Diego. At the time, Dairien was one of the top programmers in the program and I was one of the top designers.

Fast forward four and a half years and Dairien is now the primary designer for an app called Rise and I’m leading a development team. We reminisced about how much I hated programming and would stress every class about it.

If you’re a young designer or developer, don’t close the door on other skills. If you’re passionate about design, then by all means, pursue it. If you like design because it’s “easier” to learn, then I’d urge you to consider expanding your horizons and grow in other areas.

There has been a longstanding debate about whether or not coders should learn design or designers should learn code. My opinion, do what you’re passionate about. I was once a passionate designer that tinkered in code. I didn’t dislike it so I kept learning. I definitely miss designing full-time every once in a while but I’m perfectly content where I’m at.

New House

We’re moving! Here are some photos of the new place we’ve rented.

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Staying Consistent

I’ve been training for 3 weeks now. I’ve only taken 3 days off in that time (once a week). My roommate gave me shit about running on a treadmill last week when it was pretty hot here in San Diego. He said the heat is good for your body to acclimate to and it helps with weight loss.

My rebuttal was simple and it’s based around an idea he told me several year ago. His advice was (paraphrased), “Consistency first. Worry about specifics later.” I need a good habit of working out before I can worry about speed or strength. I listen to music and use GPS watch to track my improvement, though I really just need a clock.

I started out swimming 2 days a week for 2 weeks and last week I bumped it up to 3 days a week. Over the course of three weeks I’ve improved significantly. I’ve increased yardage from 1,200 in a workout to this morning where I hit 3,200 yards.

As far as times, I’m starting to get to a good place. I was able to do a pull set this morning 4 x (4 x 50) descending the interval by 5 seconds starting at 1:45 and down to 1:30. I missed one of the 100s on 1:30 but made the rest. I’m pleased with my progress after 8 workouts. By July, I’d like to feel comfortable doing 200s and 500s and hopefully get my base intervals down to at least 1:25 per 100. That might be a stretch, but if I’m consistent with working out, I’ll be fine.

Running is always the hardest for me. It’s the easiest to get out and do, no equipment or pool to worry about but it just takes it’s toll on a person. I got up to an hour and 45 minutes last night with a 15-20 minute emergency bathroom break. Runner’s trots might be the worst thing imaginable. I feel great on shorter 3 mile runs now. I’ll start worrying a little more about pace in the coming weeks.

Cycling is the easiest right now. As a swimmer, I was always strongest kicking breaststroke. It correlates with cycling well and I just don’t have a problem getting on the bike and working hard. I need to get out and do some hills at some point. Last weekend I went down to my old neighborhood and rode out east. I did about 31 miles on hilly terrain and it tanked me. I was able to finish it all but I could feel a lack of power at points.

Consistency is key for all of this. I’m getting to the point where I can mentally challenge myself with some workout goals and put myself into tougher training situations. It’s exciting to be at this point again. I’m looking forward to getting into some races sooner than later and hopefully having a full summer of workouts. No injuries, no illnesses, and no depressing thoughts.

A little inspiration and more

I’ve been quietly working on some things. I’ve put on hold the whole thing. After more thought, I need to hold off on the idea until I can spend more time developing the product itself.

In it’s stead I’ve began something else. I think it will be a lot more viable and worth my time. I’ve begun WP Setup. The intention is to offer WordPress setup, support and even some themes. I am specifically interested in setup and support for now.

I won’t go into too much detail now, here’s a snapshot of theme I’m working on. My idea is to make them simple. I’ve had an itch to design for a while. I just needed some time to sketch some ideas.


I believe that WordPress themes have become too complicated. There isn’t a silver bullet and complex themes require a lot of support.

Here’s to new ventures.

You’re Doing it Wrong

I can’t stand when people use this phrase. The fact is, we’re ALL doing it wrong. You can’t always be successful and do things the “right way”.

When I got into WordPress and the web I was total hack. Several years later, I still feel like a hack. Doing it wrong is how I learned to do things right.

When you say someone (or company) is doing it wrong, you’re saying you’re doing it right or that you at least know better. That’s pretty arrogant. I’m all about being confident and making bold statements, but to assume you know the right way about anything is just another way of making yourself look like an asshole.

As I grow as a developer I try and keep in the back of my mind the feelings I had when I started. As I teach web development, I’m well aware of the insecurities felt because honestly, I feel them too.

In the end, we’re all just trying to learn and grow. It would happen faster if we supported each other and encouraged one another to succeed rather than making people feel small.

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