Archive for May, 2003
What is the relationship between the arts and science?
At first glance nothing or very little but lets look at the list.
- Intelligent people who are able to see how their work fits into the gestalt of their field.
- Long arduous often minimally fulfilling tasks and drudgery often followed by huge breakthroughs.
- Far reaching intelligence in specific areas.
- A willingness and requirement to fail.
- Recognition of the role of the self and individual biases and beliefs and how those affect their work.
I’m not sure where I fall in all this. I consider myself a scientist-artist-philosopher, so long as it has nothing to do with dogma. Everything should be proven with in the current structure of the paradigm in which it exists holding onto dead ideas is not beneficial to creating progress. all these ideas must be recognized as intrinsically linked from the time in which it was created.
The exception to this is great art/science/philosophy. Something that is great will permanently transcend the time in which it was created.
This is a problem with some religions. They have failed to adapt and be a living vibrant belief system. People still see things through their old lenses, that are several thousand years old, cracked and held together with elaborate lacquers. There is an unwillingness to knock the old paradigm out and replace it with a new paradigm.
This is not to say that all religions are stuck, some honestly struggle with reinterpreting their teachings to fit into today’s world.
I wont name names but why follow a religion that refuses to be relevant to today?
So here’s the personal dilemma, how am relevant to today’s world. I felt more relevant when I was at WSU because I was getting a lot done, I was important to people; things and people were dependent on me.
But I’m not sure that I was relevant within the time. I filled a role, was a cog in the machine. I’m not sure that I was linked into the world, that I was relevant to it, intrinsically linked to it by more than time and space.
Lambda/WSU/Theatre was overly easy to leave, almost too much so as if I was doing complex contortions to fit in to be relevant.
Its strange but I feel much more me, free of any confining and debilitating mold. (as in a form, not the bluish green stuff.) I’ve been able to say fuck what the world and others think of me. If they don’t like my purple/blue/pink/bleach blond hair that is their problem not mine.
It is worrisome that I feel that somehow I’m placing myself in a group to be a future victim of a neo-McCarthyisit.
I wonder if the FBI has a file on me?
You know, I sort of threaten the status quo. I get interesting comments of hate against me for who I am. It worries and frustrates people that I don’t give a flying fuck what they think. People at work have been prognosticating at work that my hair will fall out because I’ve been dying my hair.
Of course I’ve also gotten approval from many people, but they seem truly happy for me, not that faux polite shit.
Which reminds me of a story. A FtoM transsexual told the story of a woman at his call center job who was old and presumably conservative that mad a point of stating “I’m happy for you and this is better for you” or something similar when he finally crossed over.
I’m happy with where I’m going, unfortunately it seems to threaten some people and its discouraging that they are not secure in themselves to feel non-threatened by me.
Because I’m different I shouldn’t be a threat, it should be celebrated.
I just watched an excellent movie today. (For those missing the allusion to the movie in the title find one that Allison Janney, Meryl Streep, and Nicole Kidman are all in it.) Okay if you know the movie there are spoilers in this entry.
It works through one of the "big questions" that exist in philosophy, specifically what life is worth living?
The historical/religions answer is live is always worth living, i.e. under no circumstances should you kill yourself.
At one time before our medical/science got out of hand and learned how to keep people alive under Extraordinary circumstances, people used to get sick then they died. There was not much of a life after cancer, a stroke, a heart attack, or a bad car accident. These are all debilitating illnesses/accidents that can seriously impede living a desirable life; living bedridden is for most not a life worth living.
Under these circumstances it is morally reprehensible to deny someone the right to kill themselves. We have placed upon them a duty to live, upon which no measurable good or achievement can come except for the doctor’s success in keeping them alive. This is like utilizing human beings t some extent as a lab animal.
I wonder how often doctors debate the question should I save this patient? Its a tricky question involving societal norms, the patient’s wishes the family’s (possibly) irrational desires for companionship, the doctor’s desire to demonstrate their medical prowess, and hospital policy. Its an amazingly complex issue and as a a result we commonly choose the "safe" option, save a life at no regard to the costs mentally, physically, financially, and emotionally.
This unfortunately lends to facilities designed to warehouse people and keep them alive until they die regardless of the quality of life issues. This is why in my mind hospice is one of the most kind things a family can allow a dying relative.
Depression is a whole other matter.
Depression is something that silently, slowly invisibly kills people. It is not permeant though but often can feel to the depressed person that it is, that it is something they would never get out of. A quote that I got from a website somewhere that I’ve misplaced the attribution to sums it up very well, "Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live."
What someone who is depressed forgets is to start living again, you’ve got to take a realistic look and examine all options, nothing show be excused too early, or thought undoable.
Sometimes suicide is an option. If you are already emotionally dead, why not bring your physical self in line with that? At some point depression should be declared a terminal illness and assisted/self suicide should be allowed. Where is the tricky question.
What amazes me is what people do to remind themselves that they are alive. They drive cars excessively fast, cut themselves, cause themselves pain, and other interesting things. If you have to prove to yourself that you are alive are you really alive, or just faking it?
I believe too many people in this world are following life along a preset script without regards to considering if they are really alive, or happy. W. H. Auden examines this question very well in his poem The Unknown Citizen.
I will live life, I will be happy, I will be free. I demand them, I am willing to make the efforts and sacrifices to ensure it.
I just wish I didn’t feel so alone doing it.
What happened with me and Shawn?
I’ve spent the last four months pondering what went wrong, how we didn’t fit, if I scared him with the "L" word, or was he honest with what he told me?
I’m not quite sure that I’m hurting. No, I’m not hurting like I used to, I’m more just confused. I don’t want to fuck up again. I don’t want to put myself through this multiple times.
Maybe, the reason this whole thing is worth it is because it will at some point end.
So then is it right to attempt to limit your pain? If its only worth it if you are true and open to being hurt then if by limiting your hurt are you being less honest with the guy you’re dating?
I know I’m alive. The pain I feel in relation to Shawn reminds me of that. I am hurt period. It will be something that will follow me for a long while. But, I also know I deserved him, someone of his caliber, his honesty, hist intelligence.
I know because I’m still hurt I’m still alive and I was live when I was with him.
I refuse to be dead inside.
I liked the show. I even understood his off color comment after 9-11-01. But thats not what this is about.
First culprit, race specifically the great white/black divide in this country.
I was shocked and appalled at the New York Times journalist that lied and plagiarized to an obscene extent.
Another personal case. I used to manage at a McDonald’s. We had a new black employee whom we shall call Cuprick. When he first started working there he was an excellent new employee, and I "took him under my wing" and pushed him and made sure things were good for him.
One night his uncle came by and said his mom was sick with breast cancer and they needed to leave to visit her. I forget the specific incidents but he used his sick, then dead mother excuses to get off work for many days over the next month and a half. This culminated in one day his mother walking in and wanting to know where Cuprick was. We told her he wasn’t scheduled, and then began to inquire if perhaps Cuprick has another family member who he might consider his mother. She said no. We asked if she was dead, but she looked alive also.
My store manager didn’t fire him for this. although he eventually got fired after stealing money from customers.
One more personal case. Another black employee at my current job has apparently successfully lied to and/or sweet talked the manager into getting a fixed schedule which pushed me out of hours that I had wanted to work.
There is an obvious thread here. African American males deceiving to get ahead. But one more story to add is in order.
My insurance plan through work covers a $350 pair of glasses every two years. Somehow I picked out a $494.88 pair of glasses. So I had to pay 144.88. (a $10 copay) for reasons beyond the scope of this eJournal, the insurance company denied the claim. So I got a voicemail about it and low and behold the glasses dropped in price to $289. So me and my insurance company got overcharged $205.88.
Yeah I know what your thinking I have a young black male optometrist.
No. He’s a middle aged white man who advertises to operate his business on "Christian Principles."
So the way to work through this is to simultaneously apply and not apply stereotypes. Of course this leads to schizophrenia and other mental illnesses so I don’t recommend following it.
So what am I stuck with? Lets not over glorify stereotypes. They’re useful that why they still exist, but we’d get closer to an idea "utopia" if we could judge people on who they really are and not how they look.
I think this is part of why having blue hair is so interesting; you get interesting responses from people. Its also why I found Black Like Me was so interesting because we got to read an outsider’s response to being black.
This is part of why being out for some is a conundrum. I have the option to be out and possibly be discriminated against or to be closeted and not be discriminated against.
But, to me it is irresponsible and cowardly to be closeted. First of all it dimishes visibility but it also is being untrue. A black person (or pick many other protected classes) has no option to be closeted.
If we GLBT people as a community allow ourselves to be in and out when it is convenient for us it creates false stereotypes but also deprives us in taking responsibility and pride in who we are.
Black people cannot look white (okay, Michael Jackson excepted) if we want to be taken seriously should we ever allow ourselves to step back in the closet?
Schrodinger’s cat intrigues me. Its a quantum physics problem so bare with me while I butcher this example.
What you do is take a cat (anyone will do but I’m rooting for the troublemaker William.) and place it in a box where we cannot see or observe him. We also place a devices that in a certain period of time will either dispense either a poison or food, there s a 50/50 chance of either being dispensed. Then we wait. Given that cats are finicky eaters, I recommend waiting an extensive period after the device goes off, ignore the silent scratching noises.)
Now, guess is the cat dead from the poison or alive? (Assume the cat has sufficient O2) Both and neither. For all we know the cat doesn’t exist in the box because we cannot see it. For al we know the cat invented a teleporter and is now on an Egyptian cruise enjoying gourmet prepared Fancy Feast. (Remember the Egyptians thought cats were sacred.) The point is we cannot know about the cat because we cannot observe it.
But when we get curious and look in we by observing the cat either kill it or bring it to live. (Whoever said that the cat’s curiosity killed the cat?)
It is the interaction of viewing the cat that is important not what happened before or what happened after.
I’ve got this jumble of thoughts I’m thinking of in no particular order.
- When I had lobster in New England on the WSKG tour and loved it; but then going back several years later, I had l Lobster again and found it repulsive.
- Dating Shawn during January, but after breaking up with him seeing him at the Midwest BLGTA conference and there was no spark.
- Visiting my old home town and feeling strange and alien, and non-belonging, where there once was belonging.
- Comparing the success of Lambda last year with the failures this year.
- Thinking of the great growth inducing therapy sessions I had with Jo, and wanting them to continue.
- The night before Louise, my dog died and the role reversal of caregivee to caregiver I experienced.
These are all ethereal events; they exist only in memory. Any attempt to recreated the past experiences fails because the relationship between me and the other actor can never be the same. It has happened, to recreate it cannot be done, because both parties have changed therefore the interactions can never be the same.
As much as I want to relive those moments, I cannot because I am no longer who I once was. Going back is like attempting to unpeel an onion. Once the onion has been peeled, its peeled. Period.
A time machine that goes backwards through your life would ultimately be unfufilling because while you can go back and see something that you once did, you can never experience it the same way again.
He described a scenario in which an Illinois resident, using a California credit card based out of a New Jersey bank, purchases a tangible piece of personal property from a Florida company as he crosses that state’s border on his Wi-Fi phone and then specifies that the item be shipped to his aunt in Massachusetts. Who should collect sales tax revenue in this scenario? The answer is clear as mud.
Come ON! For Christ sake, lets make this reasonably simple. In the case of physical goods, tax it where its shipped to. In the case of electronically delivered goods tax it at the Credit Card billing address. For 99.9% of transactions this will end up billing the right tax and getting it to the right state. The other times it doesn’t it’ll just be wrong, and everyone is going to have to deal with it.
Don’t get me wrong this is only part of the problem, (read the article for some more) but this is an absurd example, and while it might be interesting its never going to be perfect, but It’ll be close enough.
I never thought I was too material of a person. I never wanted to own something to own it. It all seemed very utilitarian. I needed somewhere to put my TV, VCR, Stereo, and TiVo. (Which were all gifts from family or hand me downs.) I wanted a kitchen table so I had somewhere to eat besides in front of the television, so I bought a kitchen table. I get books to read and think about, but all in all it didn’t seem like I owned too much stuff.
Then, I moved.
Now it seems like I have WAAAAAAAAAY too much stuff. I don’t want to get rid of it all, some of it I’ll sell, and some of it I’ll pitch. (That which isn’t worth the time to sell, because I doubt anyone will buy it off of eBay.)
Hmm… I’m sure I’ll have more meditations on the meaning of too much stuff later, but right now I need to go unpack. ;-)
Its scary to be dependent on medication. I’ve been on Effexor XR… since well Novemberish.
With the move from my apartment and work schedule change (same week, great fucking planning Nick.) I’ven’t taken it since Friday.
Four missed Doses; 600 milligrams of chemicals not pumped into my veins. (Save the amount that just gets crapped out.
Okay, the reason this is a problem is I just blue up at a bitchy voice person. I then called a supervisor over, and as this was happening the voice person hung up. I threw my flag down, when the supervisor asked what happened, I used some choice words to describe the caller in my loudest voice and I got written up.
This is just a strange problem trying to determine which one is really me? The bitchy person or the polite playful one?
They’re the same except for some drugs.
I feel incredibly lonely right now.
At this very moment I would give about anything to be snuggling with someone who or fuck the over long euphemistic descriptions. I want to be cuddling with Shawn.
Scary thing is I had to look up his last name today, but thats probably a good thing.
Yea for the fucking depressing! it reduces me down to wanting those primal things.
I’ve been chatting with Andy, wanting him to be this drop in replacement for Shawn, but somehow more permanent.
When the fuck am I going to be over him? I simultaneously hate and love ever meeting him.
I love just that we got to spend together and that he let me know whats possible.
I hate it cuz it still hurts.
I’d cut off my left pinky if it would make this hurt stop for any descent period of time. Fuck, it might even be good as a distraction, but the medical bills and the counseling would be a bitch.
I’m still stuck pondering that question. Why do we, do I have a demanding desire to have a significant other in our/my life? Furthermore how do those who don’t seem to mind that they’re single get there?
In other random ramblings people have been telling me to write a novel, and now I’ve got a topic so….. So I’m going to start doing that.
I hate suburbia. Not a dispassionate dislike, I HATE it.
Maybe its not even exactly suburbia I hate, but this new faux-old suburbia that is so prevalent south of Dayton where I now live.
Its like living in a crappy version of Disney World, all facaded and terra-formed and fundamentally fake. There is a tree there because a designer decided there should be a tree there. Fields and fields of the cultivated weed wrap around our houses attempting to beautify and naturalize them, but in actuality they require hoards of chemicals to stay alive to our standards.
We are pretentious self-centered creatures determined to demand that the world we once shared with our fellow creatures bend and contort to service us. If a bear came into our living rooms and started reorganizing it to fit her up coming young, we’d shoot her.
You know maybe nuclear/chemical/biological war would be a good thing. Place this planet back into a virgin state to be reworked, perhaps by creatures who have respect for the planet and sharing.
You see city folk can share. Hordes of them get on public transportation and get to where they’re going. It doesn’t matter if there are people of all different backgrounds and socioeconomic classes crammed in together, they all get along; they passed and continue to pass kindergarden by sharing.
Now, if you tried this with a bunch of suburbanites, all hell would break lose and they’d start WWIII. (or WWIV as we don’t know when or if WWIII has started.)
Cities are true, raw and gritty. There is no facade and people share, plus it doesn’t try to be Disney World.
Hmm.. I wonder if I’ve passed Kindergarden……