And yet, and yet….

This hasn’t turned out to be a day where I can afford to give a dingo’s turd about much. And that’s the good news.

I’ve been inspired lately to try and consider, if only momentarily, just what exactly I’m grateful for. It’s easy to focus on the negative, especially when it’s right there kicking you in the teeth, so this is a list but also an attempt to wrangle vegetables out of an invidious pest patch; an act of plucking the gold tooth from the murderous tiger; a straining of raw bits of sunshine from the black, radioactive ash of a nuclear winter. (Was that last one over-reaching? I can never tell.)

1. I am grateful for physical health.
2. I am very grateful for family and friendships
3. music
4. The West Wing (on dvd)
5. For nature, and changing weather
6. The ability all people have to escape into sleep
7. The certainty of change, and the possibility that it entails
8. Choice
9. this one’s a little long-winded, but you know how when you’re down or when you’ve been letting someone
get you that way, you start to believe you look bad? It’s not conscious, you just picture yourself in a bad way. I accidentally looked in the mirror today while smiling, and I was startled! I looked… cute. I was…human. There was nothing wrong with me. I wasn’t ugly or dark or shuttered, I was cute! And then I realize people have told me this, positive words have come in, I just sort of filtered them out. Like I was saving my attention for someone who only ever offers bad stuff.

So for those people, and for that strange moment with the smile: Thanks.

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7 thoughts on “And yet, and yet….

  1. I’m wondering about this whole good luck about being human thing.

    Since this is a fairly serious post, I suppose that I should attempt to be serious too.

    I even think I can succeed. But, I can’t avoid going on an extreme tangent.

    I think that I recall you being a bit curious about the source of my obsession with robots. I shall now explain.

    It started out as an anti-racism/anti-sexism thing. The thing about people of different sexes or different races is that they can moderately reliably tell one another apart. To be sure, the whole definition of race doesn’t make a great deal of sense. Even the notion of dividing people into two clearly defined sexes doesn’t work all the time. But that is a separate rant.

    One might question how people can even moderately reliably distinguish said groups. They do so by looking at physical characteristics of the people. That seems sort of fine to me. I don’t know quite what else one would look at. However, racists and sexists seem to think that the physical characteristics that they’re looking at have something to do with things like intelligence, rhythm sense, and general moral worth. This strikes me as completely unfounded. I think that those things are even more complicated and ill defined than race and they reside inside of brains.

    OK. So, where do robots come in? Well, again, I don’t think that one can easily identify what it takes to be smart or have feelings. Thinking robots should be denied the rights that we would grant other sentient beings seems to me to be mean in the way that racism and sexism are mean.

    I’ve gotten completely tired of talking to people about racism and sexism. The question of whether being mean to someone because of their gender counts as being mean has been solved. Yes. It does count. But, some people haven’t noticed that solution. So, I still have to talk about it sometimes so I talk about being nice to and showing respect to robots. I don’t think talking that way makes even the slightest difference to how ineffective I am at convincing people not to be pooheads. On the other hand, I feel entertained when I talk about robots. So, I even talk about them when I’m not annoyed by racists or sexists.

    By the way, if that’s a picture of you, you look way younger than I’d thought you are. And, for your information, I don’t look anything like that. I look much more like the photograph that I’m using as my icon. Some people think I’m a bit odd looking but I’m so used to it that I think I’m normal looking. I do like making faces at mirrors and looking at the mirror. I rarely start laughing when I do that. Less than an average of once per day.

  2. Maybe you should be made a contributor, your replies are more interesting than some of my posts. So you stand up for robots as kind of a stand-in for speaking out about the other silly things people are prejudice against.

    It’s kind of the same way. Pick a random group to reveal the silliness of prejudice. I’m gonna hate micronesian’s today. Tomorrow commences the vendetta on redheads. I already nailed the cat-bloggers but they likely have it coming again. ;)

    I look younger? Earlier this week you said you were disappointed I wasn’t a man. So you thought I was an old man. Were you picturing Walter Matthau? If I were going to be a man I’d like to look like Walter Matthau. I want to be ugly enough and ironic enough to say anything I want, but expressive enough to be famous if I want to. I think that’s a good balance.

  3. I’m still not convinced that that is a picture of you. I see no real reason to doubt it. I think my doubt comes from taking some sorts of pleasure in certain kinds of paranoia.

    Thank you for the contribution compliment. I prefer the idea of having this be a multiway conversation.

    I think this must be decaf. It isn’t working.

    I was thinking about the claim you made (citing ‘not rocket science’) in a comment elsewhere about men and women differing less than the general public thinks they differ. Not knowing what the general public thinks, I can’t agree or disagree with the claim. I do think individual differences among the humans are big.

    I don’t know why anyone ever even talks about redheads. I don’t think it should be a word.

    I think that it is funny that I meet a significant number of attractive women online. A few months ago, I remarked to someone who studies online socializing (but doesn’t do it — funny that) that I thought the ‘net was a great place to meet women. I was being silly in the way that I am when I say something that happens to be true and contradicts what the other people around me are saying. He didn’t take it that way. He seemed to think that it might be useful information for some other purposes.

    Oh well. I suspect that he’ll find it isn’t such a great place to meet women and will think I was lying. Then again, I think offline life is a great place to meet women. It also happens to be a great place to meet men. It isn’t so good for meeting transgendered people. I’ve met more transgendered people online than offline.

  4. Rocket Science said that, he said there was little difference between the number of words each gender used per day, but that there were huge differences among individuals. So good call.

    Me too, the transgendered thing. It’s okay if you don’t think it’s me, since I have no real reason to need you to think it’s me. I don’t really look like me, truth be told. I once saw a back-stage assistant who ended up on camera for a minute on the Conan O’brien show, and she had the face I was supposed to have. I’ve not yet found a way to reach her so as to rectify the mix-up.

  5. You’re not just cute, you’re downright kissable.

    But now I have to be jealous of you because Bongo thinks you’re cute; apparently I’ve lost his affections. When, Bongo, oh when will you go to Copenhagen for that sex change operation?

    On a more serious note however (as though transgenderism isn’t serious enough) when I’m really depressed (which happens quite frequently) I force myself to write a ten-item gratitude list every morning, and a ten-item accomplishment list before I go to bed. Sometimes, just getting to the end of the day without experiencing a psychotic break of some kind feels like a major accomplishment.

  6. David: Seriously? You think I should go to Copenhagen? You know Søren will catch me there and who knows what garden path he’ll lead me down.

    And, I’m not quite sure how this will fit with my monogamous relationship with my shadow. Of course, she’s female so if you don’t mind two of us joining up with you, it could still work. Hmm. Yeah. I think that clinches it. I’m the one that needs the sex change. If you get one, she’ll be jealous. With me getting one, all will work out perfectly.

    amuirin: Ooo! I really like the idea of someone having the face that one is supposed to have and then going to the effort of finding them and trading. I don’t suppose that you have the face she’s supposed to have though in which case she’ll need to do some trading too — you’ll have to be concerned that you find her before she’s traded yours away to some strange person that she met online. Hmm. Come to think of it, I just traded faces with someone. I’m much cuter this afternoon but I don’t think it matches me. Maybe I have your face on right now.

  7. David- Heh. I’m kissable….

    4/4

    (when I blush, I like to give a cheek ratio)

    Bongo- Yes, I didn’t want to mention it, but I was reading your comments and going, ‘My word. I’m sensing a cuteness concentration. That’s muppet-grade cuteness. How the hell did he get a muppet to trade him his face?’

    Is it fozzie bear? Or a fraggle? Fraggle cuteness would be sort of dangerous. You might start cat-blogging.

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