Thursday, March 26, 2009


I managed to make it to Thursday before I reached the full on "Bored out of my skull" phase, but it's clear that free time is not something that I do well with, or even really enjoy.  The structure or work of class gives me two key things.  Momentum, and distraction.

By momentum I mean that the necessity of doing the things enforced by the structure propels me towards doing the various things that I should be doing anyway.  No obligation means that things can be put off indefinitely.  The distraction is kind of self explanatory.  When I have this much free time my thoughts go from wandering to festering.  The details are not fit for reproduction, primarily because they're whiny and self involved, but it's destructive, and I'm tired of it.   

Overarching Message

It's a firm belief of mine that everything, at its core, is very simple.  The exact details of how things happen and why they happen are still there, and still true, but there is a core truth in all things which is by nature very simple.  

Origionally this post was going to be about a new mantra of mine, but the new one isn't really new because it's still just me trying to get at the overaching truth of my goal.  Looking back all of the mantras have said the same basic message, although they've come at it from several angles.  Every one of them has been me trying to unlearn the fear of ambition.  Throughout the past year I've gone through "Not Enough!," "Choose Action," "Get shit done," and my most recent addition of "Don't regret this."  The last of those was based on the revelation that I only regret things I didn't do, throughout my entire life I can't think of anything I honestly regret doing.

All of these are calls to action, and while that isn't any kind of grand revelation unto itself, I find myself wondering why they're necessary.  What is it in life that taught me not to do things?  I find this topic particularly compelling because I think that it may be widespread.  Of those I know everyone has a dream, everyone has something they want to do, but very few of them actually do anything about it.  I have a lot of accusations, many of which can't be made without using the word "soma," but at the moment those are still in the realms of half formed insane theories, and I prefer to only write out fully formed insane theories.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Dream Job

So, in case you haven't seen the news, there's an outbreak of snakes in Florida, and it may spread to a third of the U.S. I know it's not the right thing to say, but I hope the problem gets worse, but I've got a good reason.

If the snake problem does get out of hand, with pythons everywhere, many of them over fifteen feet long, they'll declare pythons a legal pest. Which will mean that it's always open season on Pythons, and that will be awesome.

It gets better though. There's a certain kind of crazy that you have to have in order to fight Pythons, but it all comes down to chopping them with a fireman's axe. There might be a better way to do it, but when I form my small business providing rapid response Python solutions that's the way I'm going to do it. And that's where it gets better. If pythons become a serious threat you'll need a new kind of exterminator. Not someone whose going to gas the tiny pests, but one who will come in with blades and guns and kill snakes, and that would be the greatest job ever.

Monday, March 16, 2009


It's only the Monday of finals week and it's already started. There's a phenomenon that usually waits until spring break to show up, but in these hard economic times people have started early on the grand endeavor of being stoned for a week straight.

That's not even why I'm writing this though. What occurred to me, as I encountered these individuals, is that there are certain things one can say which function exactly the same as saying "I am so high." Walking past a little fake birdcage motion detector and exclaiming that "Oh my god you guys.. birds!!" is a great example. If your entire crew spends twenty minutes trying to figure out how exactly to play with a barrel of monkeys, the conversation that takes place during those twenty minutes is another example. It's gotten to the point now that I don't even really hear what they're actually saying. I just hear the babble of their voice and my internal filter translating it, the recurring message of "So High!"

All the worlds a stage

The weather patterns over the last few days have been amazing. Normally I would say odd, or weird, or disturbing, but this time the winds and I have been dancing in perfect harmony.

I spent a lot of last week slipping between worry and bravado, and the oppressive skies and shining sun seemed to follow my moods. I spent Friday in a grand reverie and the wind swept away the clouds, bringing fresh sunlight and cool evening breezes. I spent the weekend in the trenches, toiling over notes and podcasts of lectures and practice tests, and as I closed myself off from the world the sky tucked a blanket of clouds over me. This morning I rose early, ready to face the final which may well be the formative factor of the next ten years of my life, and as I walked to campus in a state of steely resolution so too were the clouds neutral and patient, building, and waiting.

Even now I sit, resting, knowing that the next fight is just around the corner, but the sky clears as my burden is eased, a moment of respite, and sunlight, in the academic struggle.

Now I am, as a scientist, obligated to point out that all of this may be bias perspective talking, or simply that I feel better when the sun is out so the dance is going the other way around, but the experience of coelestial harmony is real to me, even if it's only just pretend.

It's fun to pretend.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Dietary Concerns

A week ago or so I was introduced to the concept of Evolutionary Fitness, and what is commonly called the Paleo Diet. It's an interesting idea, and one I got on board with pretty fast. It's a bit odd to say, but I think that the paleo diet, properly managed, could save a lot of lives. It's odd to say that because I'm quitting it.

My motivation for quitting the diet can be broken down into two basic facets. The first has to do with the ephemeral feeling of healthiness. When I was eating right before, I could feel it. I felt genuinely healthier then I did otherwise. I didn't get that feeling from the paleo diet. Mostly I just felt hungry. That may have been a volumetric thing, the simple fact being that a diet that calls for you to refrain from eating any processed grain product cuts out a huge portion of my food, if measured by average volume consumed. I think it was more then that though. I could never quite get my fill from the nigh infinite stream of fruits nuts and vegetables. It was this effect that played into the real problem I have with the paleo diet.

Say what you want about rice being a technologically based food. Yes it's got a great deal more carbohydrates then any of the foods we ate during our evolutionary upbringing, and yes it's outside of the natural spectrum of foods, but rice is cheap. So are noodles. The health benefits probably do exist from eating the naturalistic foods that were available to us in the paleolithic age, but in the information age where I am not afforded the opportunity to hunt, or to gather, I am left only to purchase, and it all adds up pretty fast. I may go back to the paleo diet some time after I've moved on to a higher income bracket, but right now I'm pulling a bit of an evolutionary trick of my own, and incorporating the adaptive behavior of cooking with cheap staple starches.