July 3rd, 2001


Moonlight on the face

So, what could a nice future of humanity look like?

The answer, I think, comes down to a somewhat diluted form of asceticism, perhaps an extract of Buddhism. Although I find the religious portions of Buddhism to be nonsense, there's a lot of interesting Buddhist philosophy that is very insightful. Concerns about impermanence can perhaps wait for another entry -- interesting here is the dynamic of desire and happiness. Again, I am going to possibly dilute -- the actual Buddhist doctrine, I believe, tells us that all desire leads to unhappiness. I think that some desire is important, but do agree that controlling desire can lead to a more enjoyable life. For that reason, there's a certain flavour of asceticism that I advocate. This flavor is summed up as follows:

A person is an ascetic if they intentionally restrict their interactions with the world in order to maintain some sense of simplicity or purity in their life.

I believe that it is very difficult to find contentedness and happiness without adopting something at least as strong as that flavor. What in particular do I worry about? Society as I know it seems to be too busy, too fast moving, and too commercial. It additionally seems to parcel out time as a precious resource. With some people I know, one needs to make an appointment a week in advance just to hang out with them. The lack of spontinaeity (sp?) in such a life seems like it would crush them. Admittedly, once I find work (still unemployed, and now spending lots of time seeking work), it'll impose a degree of schedule on me again, but even when I was in school and also working 40 hours a week, I didn't parcel out my time like that. I simply meter out all free time to myself, don't make hard commitments (even if I lose on some opportunities), and that gives the the flexibility I want. I generally avoid TV and other forms of advertising to keep them from creating new desires in me. This seems to be something humanity has lost, sadly, from my idea above of early humanity -- now there's more of a possibility of being miserable. But with effort, we can become a different kind of creature. This is my idea of the good way to live life..

We keep our lives as loosely planned as possible, avoiding many commitments, and preserving a lot of spontinaeity (sp?). We avoid influences that try to make us want things, like advertisements, religion, patriotism, fannishness, etc. We decide on what values are important to us, and reshape ourselves for pushing those values.

I've always enjoyed the company of much older people. In general, they've managed to find a kind of peace and good lifestyle that a lot of younger people lack. A certain mellowness in one's approach to life. I still want to have an inner fire in pursuit of some things, but keeping the number of those things small, and keeping my life quiet in other areas is quite important to me.

Well, that's all for now... today I have some more job hunting to do, as soon as I can get in touch with Jason.


Some people I might mention in my life...

I could just let the reader (if any) piece together who I know from passing comments, but I don't mind spelling out who some people are and a bit about them to place things in context.

  • Jason McVetta - A friend of mine, currently lives across the street from me (didn't always). I met him in the local atheist group some years back. I see him fairly frequently. Interesting politics, interesting person. Another UNIXy person, he's rapidly picking up programming skills.
  • Martha Knox - The (only) ex-gf, no longer part of my life. Dated her for about 4 months,
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    Met her at the local atheist group too. We had nice long conversations about everything. Lives a very busy/stressful life.
  • August Brunsman - Friend of Martha and Jason. A nice guy, also lives a very busy life. Was president of local atheist group some time back. I still occasionally see him around Columbus. Rather liberal.
  • Pat "Q" Quealy - Ran the campus libertarians. Another atheist, but not of the sort that went to SFF (as SFF had a liberal bent). I'm actually interacting with him more now that he's gone back home for the summer (over the internet). His netdiary was partially inspiration for me to start one.
  • Amanda Mosier - Jason's ex(?)-gf,
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    Another intellectual, a nice person, we share a lot of interests but don't see each other that often.
  • Charles Cicirella - Was introduced to him by Martha, he also knows Jason and is attracted to Amanda. A good friend, has introduced me to a lot of other people in the Columbus art scene. We often go out to eat, I do his website. We've seen several interesting movies.
  • YF - He probably wouldn't like it if I mentioned his full name. My (only) ex-bf. Also no longer part of my life. Very cheery person, always happy.
  • My Mom - I don't see her very often, as I'm in Columbus (came here for college) and she's where the rest of my family lives in Brecksville. Has become more religious as time has passed, and this is intensely irritating.
  • My Dad - I don't see him very often either, for the same reason. He's not really religiously irritating. We've occasionally had good conversations, and both have an interest in computers.

And that's really it for people that are or have played a big part or regular part of my life. Hopefully these descriptions won't get me in trouble with anyone :) *grumble* I wish that I could get in touch with Jason... yesterday we went to an employment agency but they were closed due to a power outage and they asked us to come back early morning today.


Gut Schmecken

The clock was off on my computer, and I had to correct the netdiary dates... hopefully I got them right. I believe it was, for some reason, 13 hours slow. It's probably because I had to reboot this computer 12 days ago for a kernel upgrade, and didn't check the time then. It's irritating how often booting my computers messes up their clocks. Oh well. I don't really worry about it too much because my computers generally stay up for a very long time (thanks to UPS's). My main Alpha has been up 59 days. Bored because the recruiting agency didn't call me back yet regarding if they can fit me in today. Also, the local Cajun place isn't open because of the darned holidays. I hate holidays. Businesses close, and advertisements get more irritating telling one to buy stuff. Oh well. I might as well talk about what I think of Columbus. It's not as exciting as I like, but in the 5 years I've lived here for college, I've grown to kind of like it. There are plenty of pretty parks, there arn't really hard barriers between the neighborhoods, and there are plenty of good places to eat nearby. I also have grown to like an all-night coffeeshop called Insomnia. They generally don't mind if you stay there for 5 hours or so, so I often go there at nights to program or philosophise. Their food selection isn't as wide as it should be.. *shrug*. As for actual food, there's

  • The Cajun Place - I eat there quite often, their food is perhaps a bit bland, but it's very good, it's $5 a meal, and their meals are of the precise size where I can just barely eat all of one if I'm hungry.
  • The Indian Oven - They have incredible food. It's a bit pricey, but their curry is probably the best curry I've ever had.
  • TJ's - Like Insomnia, they're open all-hours, and their food is cheap. Apart from their pancakes, their food isn't very good, and even their pancakes arn't terrific, but they're still good for when I get hungry late at night.
  • Mongolian BBQ - Make your own food. Yum. Also kind of pricey, and often crowded.

I'm really looking forward to getting a job. I've been in contact with some people in Brussels (Belgium), and so that might be fun. It might be a pain to bring my Iggies and my Cat with me though.

Anyhow, I think I'll call back that job place, as I'm getting tired of waiting.