New Start

This post was written 1 year ago.
Wed, 30 Jan 2019
The self-censorship machine has been at work again and I removed my last post, as too self-indulgent and irrelevant. ( - For anyone wondering about the rabbit, it did return after 4 days and is alive and well :))

I am in fact thinking of moving all my previous blog posts into some kind of archive that is still accessible, but will not be the main blog.

I used to have aspirations to have a technical blog. I don't think it will ever be that, but I don't want it to be a personal diary either, and in the past it did sometimes look like that.

I will still write personal things, it is difficult for me not to. I am glad to see quite personal writing styles in professional writers, too (e.g. Laurie Penny, also Robert Sapolsky in his book Behave). I think it is something like a character trait.

There is a lot going on at the moment both in my personal life, and - I don't think anybody would disagree here - in the UK, Europe, the world. Crossroads everywhere.

I think a lot about what one could call collective mental health. I used to think mine was a bit precarious, but it is not just me, not at all! It is such a widespread problem. And so many people are feeling insecure these days.

It is a bit like when women read Betty Friedan and realised that they were not the only ones feeling so unhappy, that it was not them but the the structures they were living in that made them unhappy.

These days it's not just the women, but many men too. And I just hope we all wake up to it and manage to create something better.

I was reminded of this post from 2014 recently. I had mentioned it on my blog twice before! I had forgotten how good it is. 4 and a half years on, and we are still dealing with the fallout from all he's describing, though I have a feeling things are changing now. But in which direction?

This is exactly what I feel like: "I feel like I need to figure this out, like figuring all of this out and finding new ways to live has become the most important thing I could possibly do, not just for myself and the people I love but for the entire human race."

Than he carries on:

"I don't mean me alone — I'm far too self-loathing to have a messiah complex — but I feel like, for me, this is the best use of my time. Because the world is making me crazy and sad and wanting to just put a gun in my mouth, and it's doing the same thing to a lot of people who shouldn't have to feel this way.

I don't believe anymore that the answer lies in more or better tech, or even awareness. I think the only thing that can save us is us. I think we need to find ways to tribe up again, to find each other and put our arms around each other and make that charm against the dark. I don't mean in any hateful or exclusionary way, of course. But I think like minds need to pull together and pool our resources and rage against the dying of the light. And I do think rage is a component that's necessary here: a final fundamental fed-up-ness with the bullshit and an unwillingness to give any more ground to the things that are doing us in. To stop being reasonable. To stop being well-behaved. Not to hate those who are hurting us with their greed and psychopathic self-interest, but to simply stop letting them do it. The best way to defeat an enemy is not to destroy them, but to make them irrelevant."

Making the charm against the dark, that's what I want to help doing. And figuring out new ways to live.

This is where I am starting from.

Tags: mind_stuff / blog /

January Blues

This post was written 2 years ago.
Tue, 08 Jan 2019
I am starting up this blog again with a little heartache.

One of our two rabbits has gone, vanished without a trace. I let them out in the garden, as I often do, but I did not check as frequently as I used to, and when Alex was back from school I did not get them back into their house because I thought it was alright as long as he was there.

It could be that we'll get the rabbit back. Our garden is surrounded by a high fence except for one spot where it is still very high, but not totally unthinkable for them to get over. If he did manage, we should have spotted him in that garden, the neighbours weren't there, but the children jumped over, and they couldn't find him. A garden further? Did somebody take him inside perhaps?

All the while I was at hack night and had no clue this was going on.

And here is heartache number two. I cannot even explain it, and I don't want to analyse too much.

It is funny because I would say it was a success, in that some people really got something out of it, and one person who'd not been before got good pointers for his future career and he thanked me in a message, and gave me a tip for my job search as well. People got talking and had a good time.

This is always my main concern, that people feel comfortable and get something out of it.

But I felt kind of stupid afterwards for a variety of reasons, and they don't even have to do just with the hack night. There's also the never-ending men vs women ruminating.

And it's as if I deliberately tried not to progress, stay a junior forever, a beginner. It is good to keep being a beginner, at new things. But not at everything.

I just read a book called "The Courage to be Disliked" which is about the psychology of Adler. I did not completely buy it all, I found it was idealising Adler's approach too much and not talking about the difficulties, but it was really interesting, it did turn things on its head. Especially this point: Usually, as Freud did, people look at the causality of things. I behave this way because in my childhood this and that thing happened. Adler looked at the purpose. I behave this way because I want to achieve a certain result. - And this can be something quite negative. You might just create certain circumstances because you are afraid of changing, you don't have the courage to break out of a situation.

In any case, I hit a wall once again. It's evolve-or-die time, baby.

Tags: family / codehub /