Toe\cdotholds” |ˈtōˌhōld| (noun): a small place where a person’s foot can be lodged to support them, esp. while climbing.  A relatively insignificant position from which further progress may be made.

“I’m writing a blog.  What should I call it?”  I asked.  “Monte would have said ‘Yet another blog that no one reads’,” Kate said, “But there is probably 2,600 of those names out there already.  Why are you writing a blog anyway?”

“Well, I read lots of things online, some more insightful than others, but I learned from all of them.  It’s good to give back,” I said. “Besides, writing something foolish is an excellent way to know the thinking of better men (“and women”, I added hastily).  The Chinese calls this 拋磚引玉: it’s a story about a so-so poet writing half a poem on the wall, in anticipation of a visit by an excellent poet.  The excellent poet was inspired to complete the lines, and together they created work that otherwise would not exist.”

“Sounds good Jon.  What are you planning to write about?  Your nerdy life, not to be rude, just ain’t that interesting…”  I pretended to glare at her.  “I’ll write about you and Monte, alright?  We’ll call the blog, ‘The Lives of Kate the Marvelously Happy Artist and Monte the Mysterious’…”  “Look at that dripping sarcasm.  The floor’s all slippery now.”

One thing led to another, and we decided to call this Toeholds: “a relatively insignificant position from which further progress may be made”.  Thanks for visiting.



Jon is working on his chemistry PhD, for which he make molecules, paint lipid bilayers, code, draw, and write.  He does digital illustrations for Wikipedia and other projects.  Musically, Jon sings and plays the flute, the mountain ocarina, and the xanphoon (horribly; even Shep the Dog agrees).  He practices Ashtanga yoga and aspires to be an endless butterfly swimmer.  Jon is also an amateur illusionist and teaches balloon-twisting.  Having lived in Hong Kong, Italy, Vancouver, and Montreal, he is currently living in Victoria BC.


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