June 13th, 2004


Smile Collector

Lest you forget my geekish tendencies, I am pleased to report that I finallyhave finished Final Fantasy Tactics Advance the full way,getting the 'good ending' after the game is completed proper. Barring mygetting other new Gameboy/Gamecube games soon, I anticipate spending no moretime playing video games for quite some time (well, I might start playingbrief games of Puzzle Bobble again, but that's always a brief thing.., not thekind of game that takes a month to finish). This is a good thing -- I'm startingto spend time learning about the research my new research group atwork is doing. It is a good sign that I have yet to come across a paper thathas failed to interest me. Yes, I actually anticipate doing research in the newjob, and that's going to be cool -- while the AutonLab certainly did a lot ofresearch, I only rarely understood it, and similarly, only rarely was itof interest to me. Of course, I think it was handy for them to have a'systems guy' around -- I imagine it'd be easy for businesses not to realizehow important it is to have the lubricating effect of that type around.

I've recently been thinking about the desire for salvation in a religiouscontext, and the religious nature of forgiveness. I wonder if it is theresult of universalizing of guilt, which itself is an extension of regret,which can be understood in terms of value dynamics. I further wonder if mypush to understand everything in terms of value dynamics falls within the"continental philosophy" style. While I don't think that quite *everything*people do can be explained in terms of said model, I do think that theperspective is the strongest I've seen, and am optimistic that it's thestrongest perspective that we have.

I've had a number of strange dreams recently, one of which gave me a newperspective on jealousy, and another which elaborated on a brief topic atdinner this last week, and made me realize that a certain other person ismuch kinder than I am, and like me, has suffered because of their kindnessand willingness to swallow things most people would discard. It's funny howinfectious certain kinds of personalities are, how some people have a naturalcharisma entirely independant of their looks (which might or might not alsobe good). It takes more than just goodwill to have that kind of pull -- somepeople are poisonously ill-disposed, and it takes special effort to maintaina friendship with them (although if they're cool enough, it's often worth it).I've known a few of these people.. then there are people who mean well, butare clumsy in social interaction (describes me fairly well), and people whomean well, and then there's this other category, which has something elseadded in that makes everyone like them. These latter people are pretty rare,and I'm trying to understand exactly what it is about them that gives themthat characteristic, the origin of the impression.

Jealousy is a jealous emotion... eventually stealing the strength of allothers. It is also a guardian against abuse...

Anyhow, today I'm going climbing with a bunch of friends. Running the lastfew days has made it clear that I'm completely recovered from the accident,and as an added bonus, my thumb injury is completely gone too (had forgottenabout it).


Real Plastic Trees

Today was an active day. We had a bunch of people rock climbing, and I thinkI've climbed better than I have in a long time, finally climbing the reverseincline walls, and tackling every overhang I attacked. I thought about it, anddecided to get the year's membership -- considering how often I climb, I thinkit's pretty likely it'll pay for itself, and I've been doing this long enoughthat I don't think I'm likely to lose interest. Of course, I was moderatelycertain when I got the gear, but membership is $320/yr, and going is $10/day.After climbing, we went to Milky Way, grabbed some food (the cute girl whoworks there wan't around), and went to the park to eat it, nap in the sun,and otherwise have a good time. Later, I walked home, cleaned up, and thenwent running with K at the nature centre. Apparently, my health really must begetting better -- after rock climbing for a few hours, I ran three miles and,while a bit tired, probably could've kept on going for awhile. Booyah.

Instead, I'm relaxing at the Tree. Booyah.