"Realpolitik is a good basis for understanding, but a poor basis for action"
Last night's dreams reminded me of a side of me that doesn't come out too often in my awake life. To some, it is credentials, to others, it's just part of one's nature.
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Jury Duty .. was irritating but not as long as it might've been. I managed to navigate public transit to get to West Pgh's downtown on time. It was actually nice seeing some parts of town I haven't seen for awhile -- when I was dating Debb, and later, Nicole, I saw a lot more of that area than I do nowadays. The county courthouse isn't far from the point. On the inside, the building had the typical government building feel -- the building itself is grand and designed to impress, but years of maintaining and using it on the cheap makes that a kind of grand squalor, like making a shanty inside of a mansion. I was surprised when I stepped into the juror room - there were a LOT of bored, slightly nervous looking people sitting around, the vast majority of them at least moderately ugly people. There was a contingent of housewives gossiping who were particularly grotesque. Eventually we went into an empty "waiting courtroom", filled out paperwork, and waited. Fortunately, I packed a small pillow in my backpack, and made use of it. A little before noon, they sent half the juror pool out to lunch and let the rest of us go, as it was a slow court day. I ate at the downtown Srees for the first time, and then came back. It wasn't a very useful day for anyone involved, but it was at least a bit of nice variety.
Some people are shy about napping in public for safety reasons. I take a few precautions, but I don't worry too much (especially if my laptop isn't with me). Sleeping in the midst of the criminal justice system itself, with the only people around being judges, police, and randomly selected jurors is probably about as safe as most people ever are sleeping in life (considerably safer than sleeping at home) :)
By my calculations, I'm coming up on three years in Pittsburgh. My retirement vests in about a month.
In the news, some fat lady filed a complaint against her doctor (a chap by the name of Terry Bennett) because she had her feelings hurt when he told her she needed to lose weight. I think it's a good thing that he's not sugarcoating (hehe) things for her. A quick aside on obesity -- I don't think people should all look like Barbie or Ken. There is such a thing as too skinny, and a lot of companies push people to unhealthy levels of skinniness or neurotic levels of care about fitness. That's bad. However, the "pro-fat" people are just as bad as the pro-anorexia people. It's natural to be disgusted by morbidly obese people -- many types of interpersonal reactions make sense in the light of evolutionary science. People naturally dislike badly disfigured people, cripples, and.. well, really really fat people. From an evolutionary standpoint, such people are unfit, and it's was probably unwise to rely on them in the EEA. In modern society, we struggle with parts of our nature to better relate to each other, making things like politeness and tolerance important. Taken too far, this has some seriously negative results, and we lose too much of what we naturally are.
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You know you're living life badly if you're routinely publically apologising for things you say, especially if you mean them. Pat Robertson made a call for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, not unlike Ann Coultier's call for a crusade against Islamic countries. Of course, from the perspective of many a liberal, I'm sure, Robertson would be a better candicate for assassination. Everything he does is sinister, everything he touches would bring us closer to Christian Theocracy.