I will never get tired of this joke.
After like fucking months of not doing anything about it for no apparent reason, I got a little kit and fixed my sunglasses.
I got a shirt from American Giant. It’s amazing.
I did not end up buying this hat. Perhaps this was a mistake.
I know, right? So what has been happening? Well, as mentioned elsewhere, it was my birthday recently and C and I travelled to San Francisco to celebrate it. While the most obvious addition to my life upon returning to the Northwest was an infected cat bite, there have also been some subtler changes.
Living in Portland and spending time with C, who is an inveterate cocktailer has dulled my palate for wine considerably. For a long time I was more or less okay with this (note that this is at least in part because said palate is still remarkably sophisticated), but after dinner at Absinthe, I’m reversing my course on this one. Cocktails are fine, but I am totally over drinking them with dinner. That shit is for savages.
We also spent a fair amount of time at SFMOMA one day, and The Palace of the Legion of Honor the next. Portland has a very nice art museum, of course, but it doesn’t have a lot of the high-modern stuff, the supremacy (Suprematy?) of which, unlike wine, is something C and I agree about vehemently. It’s nice that I always end up at SFMOMA with artists.
On the plane home I finally finished Seven Pillars of Wisdom, and returned to The Line of Beauty, which I had laid aside while ago, having not found myself particularly engaged. I think that something about the trip put me in the mood for the high Hollinghurst style, and I have been enjoying it immensely. Now that Amis has retired to xenophobic avuncularity, it may be the case that Hollinghurst is England’s best practicing author. Obviously that’s not the best novel of the second half of the century of the novel, but it’s not nothing either.
The upshot of all of this is that I think it’s time for me to return to snobbery. I am planning on going out less but bringing much more decadent things into the house. Time to get my damn culture back.
As promised, moving images.
Some self defense.
I feel a little ambivalent about this, but this break was probably the highlight of my test. It was a little uncertain that I’d be able to arrange people properly, and I hadn’t previously broken any boards with a chop. The breaks only at the end, but I like all of this because even without being able to hear what’s going on, I think it gives a sense of the community at the school. Also, there’s a bit of a funny when I accidentally break one of the boards while I’m getting things set up.
I think some important stuff happened with this test.
So I’ve been living a life of quiet desperation, as is the English way. Primarily this is because after something on the order of 7 years of service this long-standing artifact bit the dust.
I try not to be too worked up about objects, but I am already suffering profoundly facing the morning without it.
Right, here’s what I wanted to say when I posted those pictures of those charming gentlemen in the park: while I was there I spent a lot of effort getting through 40ish pages of a rather charming book. I kept sort of uncosciously getting up and trying to go home to “do something,” and then realizing that I fucking well was doing something and I should sit in the park and do it.
I’ve spent the last 6 years or so kind of aggressively on the make, and while ther are a lot of things that on the surface it seems like I have to show for it, I’m pretty sure I’d be a lot better off if I had been a bit more relaxed. I’ve wasted a
lot of creative energy on work and industry-related stuff when I should have done the obvious thing and put the creative energy to use elsewhere.
I’m not totally clear on what to do about this. I still want, eventually, to finish Markov Garden. I even managed to give my efforts a little bump last night by swtiching out the serialization format and saving some space (not enough space, but some). But this feels so much like something that represents being on the make, and I’m tired of being that way.
I’ve been reading this (in a previous edition), and sort of thinking about the idea of some kind of manifesto to more or less determine the putative focus of my actions. I guess my manifesto is that I’m opposed to bad metaphors. That’s a little overwhelming, unfortunately. Scoped so poorly that it’s basically a bad metaphor of its own.
So while this was always already intended as a blog post, I’m actually writing it on an honest-to-got note pad in Laurelhurst Park, which I only discovered recently because I was meeting my sister at Side Street and the 15 was running wonky. Let this be your notice that this oversight has gotten you fucking fired.
At any rate, writing things on paper. I went back to writing my diary in, well, a diary a couple of months ago, but I wasn’t doing very well with it. I recently started regimenting my morning a bit more, however, and I think that things are going to improve.
About that regimentation: initially, feeding the cat was the first thing I did after getting out of bed, but that turned out to be a huge mistake. He started trying to get me up earlier and earlier by jumping on my chest and biting my face. This was corrected by moving his feeding time back a bit, after I’d done some dottering. Shocking how something so devious can be so credulous about some things.
I decided to write in this fashion to get around a real lack of thinking that I’ve been doing lately, which is in dramatic need of correction. Well, not lack of thinking, of course, but maybe lack of correct thinking. I’ve been involved in some sort of plumpe denken, which has been taking a severe toll.
Now, I have been fixing things around the house (at least part way) and writing a new SDK for Temboo, so it’s not like I’m in a coma or something. The pattern is more like after I’m done with that stuff I don’t have an internal life. Instead, I have a bunch of niggling worries, a melodramatic awareness of my backlog of concerns, and then a bunch of self-deprecating. . . I don’t know, things.
So naturally this creates a bit of a death-spiral. I’m trying to combat it by just keeping closer tabs on the tiny details in the tick-mark on a list sort of way, and the aforementioned aggressive regimentation.
And then this, of course. Having a big stretch of empty space here means that I’ve been trying to write about things and then getting caught up in some manner of detail or another and then whatever I was thinking about has slipped too far from me, and it’s just another loss. That sort of builds up until all you can do is push out some maudlin business about how much work everything is. Bogus.
Okay, hopefully that is all over and we can get back to metaphors, which is all I really care about any more (and may, considered carefully, be the only thing about which I’ve ever cared.)
P.S.: Did you want everyone you’ve ever met to know that you’re a colossal asshole? Someone has sorted that right out for you.
If you thought the commenters on the Scalzi post mentioned in the previous entry were self-important misery merchants, check out what happened when the damn thing got reposted on Kotaku.
I had planned to be so good. Furthermore, I guess I’d sort of hoped to coast along on the momentum that came with the previously-mentioned promotion, but of course I don’t work that way. Instead, it seemed to cause a bit of a rupture and everything got kind of destructured.
Pinterest is great. Despite initial reservations, I think I’m getting more out of it than any other internet service these days. After my initial reaction to the information flood my impulse was to stop following everyone to whom I was automatically subscribed when I created my account. Luckily I didn’t do this, and instead starting dropping individual boards in which I was clearly not interested. The result is that I avoid being inundated with crap, but I’m still seeing a lot of things that are very cool that I wouldn’t have found left to myself.
In the olden days that doddering old fools like me only barely remember almost all personal web presences included a substantial link section. People would use these to collect lists of pages that they wanted to keep around, and there was a sort of discovery process whereby you would find someone’s homepage and follow their links, learning about various corners of the web as you went. Traditionally-minded bloggers like Warren Ellis still frequently post entries that are lists of links, but in general this process has moved within the silos of social networking sites. Of course, Pinterest is a social networking site too, but it’s very easy to get stuff into it and (and really, this is the most important thing) one doesn’t have to be logged in to view content.
I’ve been really scattered. I’ve always tended to be this way a bit, but it has accelerated lately. I think. I definitely feel like I am less able than usual to determine what I should be doing next, which often means that I waste time doing nothing. It is also the case that my attention span has been really dismal. I’m not positive what that is about.
The most obvious victim of this has been Markov Garden, which is currently pretty dormant. It is very hard for me to decide what to do about that. Part of me would like to really focus on how I can get organized in such a way that a next step is either obvious or discoverable when I find myself wondering what I ought to do. Part of me thinks that the most important thing is to finish what I’ve started and trying to organize myself more effectively ought to wait until after that has happened. If you hadn’t guessed from the previous paragraph, the outcome of this conflict is always that I don’t do anything worthwhile.