Tonight is an instance of what I'll title STDEVENING5 (eat alone at India Garden then go to Té Café until it closes), tweaked by the suddenly plentiful snow (and crazy-slippery sidewalks, slipperiest this year!) and, of course, specific thoughts and sketches. On the way to IG, spotted a couple having that awkward conversation "are we gf-and-bf yet?" - imagined a knighting ceremony where couples commemorate the moment when the answer becomes yes by dubbing each other gf/bf using some implement that commemorates their personality/life path/career. If, for example, an artist dates a Unix geek, the Unix geek dubs with the One True Keybard while the artist dubs with a paintbrush. Dances and festivals would possibly accompany this, maybe a lighter version of a Ketubah for the legalistically inclined.
Futures:Earlier today decided that I really should replace my laptop's (250G) HD with a SSD - played a bit with SSDs earlier today and got some advice from my boss (who happens to be as close as a topic expert as I have on the topic). Also have been trying to decide if I should wait for the next-generation giant Cintiq or buy the current-gen one (handed the existing one off to someone who should have one and who would use it better than I was). All of this balances with the tenative plan of moving to some new city before next winter, provided I can figure out specifics and manage not to let my craziness eat me before then. I guess I'm giving up on going straight to grad school from here - a change in scenery will get me out of a lousy status quo for something better. I imagine most of the problems in my life really are in my head, which I can't really replace, but maybe a move would help me clear things up. Anyhow..
- 2600 remains 70% irritating crap from 70% irritating authors
- Someone managed to pick someone else up on the bus ride back to SqHill(!), exchange of phone numbers was accomplished. The human male is amazingly irritating when flirting (most of the time when I've wanted to do that, I was pulled back either by a return to the "your behaviour monitor" which made being like that ridiculous, or by depressive shyness... so maybe it's unhealthy to notice too much how irritating flirting males tend to be).. but maybe that pair is continuing their shallow conversation now with wine and a candle .. or more likely beers and burps. Meh. At the end of the day, who's not alone?
- The snow really seems to want to bury the world again. It's very pretty.
- Again felt like a second-class citizen (which I am, for good reason, I guess) at CMU as I left work - all these private dinners and events where I could maybe go if I wanted but where I don't really have a role to play. I think being a fully vested member of the academic community is maybe a good a reason as any to go through grad school - I love the sciences, and I love the idea of universities, and I never will have (or deserve) to be more than a hanger-on as staff. Apart from possibly becoming a national leader (which will never ever happen), I don't think I have a good possible future outside of academia (well, maybe some truly awesome nonprofits or other government jobs might fit, but I don't really think that's likely)... Self frustration for wasting so much time already and letting my "I just want to learn, screw the grades" attitude close so many doors. When I was younger, standardised tests and being called a genius by the right people opened doors, but my stubborn unwillingness to do anything with myself has caused them to slowly close, leaving me with just a history of poor grades and a poor work ethic as the tangibles to present anyone who would accept me in any field I have competency/interest. It's a wonderful parallel to other things in my life, oy. Maybe lifting anchor will help.. I'd just need to start anew, hit the ground running, and try to hop into and through grad school as soon as possible without giving myself a chance to slack or get distracted. If I fail, at least the fresh feeling of my face against a brick would be a change from this numbness. Watching everyone else enjoy awesomeness denied to me here is really lousy. The accumulated anger, disappointment and bitterness towards people I've admired would be nice to bury too.
I sometimes wonder what I would advise younger versions of myself to improve my life - it's hard to think of things that wouldn't go against my basic nature, although perhaps we all have false ideas that our past self was either very similar or very dissimilar to who we are now - how many of us really know how we were (or are now, for that matter)?
- My cell phone has developed its own tumour, bulging out a bit to the extent that the rear plate of my phone won't stay entirely on. I've heard that being too close to a cellphone may cause cancer; perhaps batteries are not exempt.
Recently saw the numbers on how much China and Russia spent from the 50s until the mid-80s on their conflict - staggering. If they had been able to avoid that and spend half of it on infrastructure, I wonder how different the world would be today. It must've been delightful for pro-American ideologues to see things like that happen - who would think that two communist world powers with a long border between them would be at each other's throats for such a long time? (aside: the British/Argentinean conflict seems to be heating up again)
In the most recent Auto-Tune the News (#10 was released a week or so ago and it is most excellent), there are some oddities that become more clear when playing it at 80% speed (in mplayer, the square brackets adjust speed) - there are some parts where the notes are kind of muddled, and some parts of the note-cluster appear to be patterns that "demand" a response (by musical implicature), but they fade back into the non-overtured mainline of the music before the response becomes necessary - the effect on the listener is weird - it's akin to .. having speculative branches in the CPU being discarded but still figuring into the visible timeline of the program, or perhaps Hawking radiation, or perhaps having some anger left at someone after dreaming them doing something cruel.. violated abstractions.. the non-main voices are best heard doing this around 30 seconds in for those rare people who might like following my usual BS :P I sometimes wish I had more of a background in music theory.
Recent efforts to flesh out a character and her world enough that I could write a webcomic about it have been rather successful. Not having New England's version of high society means I'll probably never know how accurate I am, but hooray for wikis to organise these things. A sketch I did some time back of someone who's near one of the ideal forms in my notion of female beauty and a hint of personality from a quirky badass in one of my favourite RPG videogames (Etna from Disgaea) in the midst of an upheaval yields a story that rolls off the mind. Perhaps hooray for being a dreamer.