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<disclaimer>I've dithered horribly about where to post this -- it's definitely not a Perl programming question, it's also not an idea for improving PerlMonks -- and finally settled on Meditations since it is, to some extent, a meditation on Perl and programming. I hope it fits.</disclaimer>

In fits and starts, and with a little bit of ballot box stuffing right at the end (well, just exercising my right to vote and being rewarded as a good citizen), I find myself a newly-made friar.

And for some strange reason, this event has brought down upon me a number of quasi-existential crises.

One, I am stuck in a Perl rut. I know this. I answer the same types of questions. I tend to ask the same types of questions. I am not going anywhere with my Perl programming skills.

Two, I don't know how to break out of this rut in order to start learning again. As I see it right now, there seem to be three (possibly four) ways to move forward:

  1. To do
  2. To study
  3. To teach
  4. To do all of the above

I've finally given myself a little Perl project (glueing together Notes invites and iCal) in the hopes that this will point me in the right direction (and free me forever from the horror that is Lotus Notes).

I have been unable to find a school in central London that offers any kind of advanced Perl programming class -- although this may just be something to do with the fact that I have no idea where to start, which schools are reputable, and so on.

In addition, I'm also suffering from the handicap of never having taken a formal CS class -- this makes getting into good programs/classes more difficult while simultaneously weakening my ability to learn on my own (Try reading the 'Wolf' book without a CS background. I lasted five chapters, but it's been gathering dust ever since :P).

Aside from PerlMonks, I don't see any serious teaching opportunities on the horizon. Besides, I'm sure that there are a horde of people with far more thorough groundings in Perl who need the position more than I do.

So, and here's where this becomes a question for discussion, how have the rest of you dealt with these kinds of issues? I know that I cannot be the first person to have this type of crisis and I'm hoping that someone has some insight into the problem...


In reply to Existential Crisis (Or: On Becoming a Better Monk) by jreades

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