September 3rd, 2010


The Molting Mind

The last few days I've been on a big cleaning kick. Collapse )Maybe philosophically minded people always have such junk in their past.

The thing that bothers me about this is that I think I was much more prolific in the past - not in terms of ideas, but how willing I was to put pen to paper. I still am interested in theory that binds a Weltanschauung, but that theory takes a radically different form (it doesn't touch the specifics so much, more the foundational principles and methods) in my current thinking, and for some reason I'm not in the habit of writing that stuff down. Earlier, I had a wonder if small-p philosophy is made largely obsolete given an adequate value theory - I'm pretty sure now that the answer is no, but it takes a bit more work to talk about what's left - one doesn't directly arrive at the content by playing with given values and intuitions (which were provided to me by libertarian philosophy), one must walk around deliberately with a magnifying glass and surveyor tools in order to find the next interesting abstraction. Then again, foundational philosophy is not supposed to be easy.

I came to realise that unless the timing works out very nicely, I may have a gap between when I planned my job to end here (end of the year) and when I might hope to be accepted into a grad school (provided I'm accepted). I could easily ask my bosses to accept something different than I've already planned with them, but I'm thinking it might be nice to try to make some other use of the time. I'm not sure what I want to do - maybe some light part-time work to pay the bills combined with serious efforts to have some adventures? Maybe contract work? Maybe some hardcore volunteerism (Sea Shepherd? Greenpeace?). It'd be great to somehow mix teaching into it, anything from teaching SQL, Unix, or Programming to teaching basic science or maths... Depending on what I do, it might make sense to alter my living arrangements to lower cost and/or facilitate travel (really not sure what to do about the cats with some of these ideas). I haven't had enough adventure in my life, nor enough downtime, and given that I believe I'm hopefully near the end of the career of 「Systems Wizard」(the title I like for the ground between 「Systems Programmer」 and 「Systems Administrator」) (even as it might be a nice odd job or hobby), I probably don't need to worry too much about my resumé anymore. Anyone with ideas, comments welcome.

I'm running the Pretty Good Race today. The last time I ran it was 7 years ago - this reminds me I've been at CMU for awhile. I wonder if I'll beat my record or not. The one problem - I remembered running clothes and shoes, but forgot socks (bought Birkenstocks a few days ago). I could either do this thing barefoot or go sockless-in-shoes. I likely will give barefoot a go - sure the RDR tore my feet up a bit, but they're tougher now (hopefully enough so for a real trail), and this race has always been a bit about being goofy (I recall people running backards, there's a unicycle division, etc).

  • Current Music
    Tom Lehrer - Selling Out

Lithium, try carbon nate


  • Upside: I believe I have probably done something novel in the PGR's history by running it barefoot. People were pleasantly surprised that I managed to finish.
  • Downside: It hurt. A lot. The one foot that sustained some damage from my last barefoot road run suffered very badly from the run (the other foot's surface is fine, and both are bruised in novel ways that make walking, even in my sandals, a bit unpleasant). I also finished between all the other runners (I think) and the walkers. I might've been able to have picked up the pace a bit during the non-gravel parts on the way back, but I was too wary to give it a go and the gravel bits saw me barely running at all. Maybe if both of my feet had been intact I would've been better off in this run.

Still, it was an experience. I am not entirely sure how to deal with the damaged foot - a learning experience involving scissors, rubbing alcohol, buckets, and lots of bandages awaits. Maybe the timing of getting my bike fixed was perfect - I can't walk without a good bit of discomfort, but biking works pretty reasonably.

Oh hey people if you decide you want to take me places to hang out, this would be a great weekend to do it.

I find this Blog about dressing well to be oddly interesting. I've recently come to see the degree to which I've been trapped by habitCollapse )

Still thinking about what to do with the gap time I may or may not end up with. Collapse )

Regardless, not feeling like I'm alone in the world helps.

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  • Current Music
    Decemberists - Eli the Barrow Boy