Thursday, 27 April 2017

Everything You Do Matters - Jordan B Peterson

Jordan B. Peterson has rendered my own humble and developing body of work unnecessary, which is a relief in a way - though I will doubtless continue Sumto's story as he continues to stumble his way forward toward some understanding of value. This video could be considered to contain spoilers, but I recommend it anyway - partly because i have no way of knowing at this point if Sumto will succeed and so knowing the goal I have in mind isn't so much of a spoiler after all.

This is also the goal I have for myself, of course, and a goal that I suggest might be a worthy one for everyone.

There's a section in here that I think may be important. We all have something in common, which is a rare thing to see and so worth noting. Because we all act as though our own pain is real then it is, so we all have that in common. Our own pain is real, be it mental or emotional or physical. It's a worthwhile base to rest our thinking on because there are consequences - it might be considered wrong to add to someones unique pain, and good to spend a moment easing it a little if you can.

I was reminded of something that happened many years ago when watching this and noting what D.Peterson says about this. A brief story follows.

My then lady and I were meeting in a bar to rent a house for a for months somewhere-or-other. The husband of the negotiator terned up as well and we chatted a bit. He talked a little about his childhood. He had been born into money - huge trust fund kind of money - and gone to a public (a private if you prefer) school. When a child he had a holiday from school but his parents were 'busy' and he had to stay at The Hilton hotel in London on his own. A child. On his own.

My then lady laughed and said "Oh no, the horror, you had to stay at The Hilton."

I winced. I said something different. I don' remember what. I don't think he noticed, but his wife did. she said something like, "You have some experience of this?" I don't remember what I said, but I meant was, "Yes. I have some experience of being a child neglected and left alone."

I don't think I would have swapped his experience for mine. I would still be a child, during the holidays, left alone while my parents went and dealt with much more important matters than me. Do you see? Everyone's pain is real to them. We have this in common. It's not a bad place to begin understanding each other.

Of course, there are worse neglects, and lesser. But they are all real to the individual. And that's a start.

In any case, there is also this. This video is an expression of free speech, and Dr. Peterson talks about that more than a little. It is worth noting that... I will say 'some people' wanted him not to say these things. After watching this I thought, This is what they wanted him not to say!?!

If you watch this, and listen carefully, you might also wonder why 'some people' wanted to stop him saying these things. There can be, sadly, no 'good' reason.

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Entrenched Ideas: Stefan Molyneux on The History of the Plymouth Plantation

Actually, the piece below is called What Pisses Me Off About Thanksgiving. It's pretty much the same subject because it is the seeming lack of awareness of the actual history that pisses him off. It's kind of interesting and worth the watch. I doubt the vague entrenched ideas will go away fast, but the truth about a given subject is not always the entrenched idea about it. It strikes me as strange how rare it is that the source material is used, especially when it isn't that hard to find in the information age...

 History of the Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 by William Bradford

Sunday, 23 April 2017

Writers to Watch - A Writer's Choice #3 Kings of the Wyld

There have been a good number of processes chewing away at my time over the last few months and that's why I haven't been spending any time here. As it looks like we are in one of those endless cycles of adjustment, I'm removing some of my attention from events and thought I would post something here.

May you live in interesting times, I'm sure you know, is often quoted as a curse from ancient China. Could be true, wouldn't be surprised. Certainly, times are interesting in many areas. Still, I'm not going to get into politics here - mainly because it would mean an endless series of clarifications of my actual position. Instead I'm just going to post a couple of links and comments.

Kings of The Wyld

I only read the look in side - so far - but I trust my own judgement enough to recommend this from that alone. Nicholas Eames absolutely nails it, I'd bet cash that the progression of this book and the conclusion will make the purchase price seem like a gift. Go read the look inside and see if you think I'm wrong - I bet you will be hooked. I have it on my wish list and will take the time to read it later. It might be that you beat me to it and come back to let me know what you think. I'm betting it's every bit as cool as I think it is.


And then there is this. I recently stumbled across the work of Jordan B Peterson... and I have been absorbing his vast number of lectures and one book (Maps of Meaning) as fast as I can handle. You may think I am over stating the case when I say that I think this is literally the most important body of work ever produced. I am not. I seriously think that this body of work represents a turning point in human history and will hopefully one day be acknowledged as that.

It really doesn't matter where you start, it kind of depends on what you are most interested in as the body of work is a synthesis of many fields: biology, brain evolution, sociology, psychology, philosophy and so on - It's like a Grand Unified theory of Everything for humanity and human society. There is nothing I was ever going to say about anything that isn't effortlessly incorporated into this work, kind of making me entirely redundant - and I don't mind a bit. Go watch some, and if this video doesn't grab you just flick through his other uploaded videos until something does.

You will not regret spending the time.

I'll post more and discuss this more as time goes by, but for now here's one link and I'll let him speak for himself...

Saturday, 15 October 2016

Apocalyptic Fears VI

This volume of short fiction by multiple authors is very reasonably priced, is available for pre-order and includes another Dancing with Darwin story, Antidote Anecdote. Not the shortest, I think, but obviously not the longest either. I still like the Dancing with Darwin stories a great deal and am glad that I am not alone in that.

Apocalyptic Fears VI

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Wisconsin Wendigo, a Dancing with Darwin novella

The world ends not with a bang, or a whimper, but a wild crazy howl of insanity as a seeming virus spreads like wildfire and promotes mental disorders among the populace at large. The world goes crazy, descends into an anarchy of insanity, and civilization collapses. In the wake of this, seeming monsters appear... how? what are they? and from where? Avalanche and Angelfire believe themselves to be superheroes, and seek answers...

Wisconsin Wendigo Retail Links

The first four Dancing with Darwin stories are available individually, collected or for best value as part of the Apocalyptic Fears anthology.

If you are unfamiliar with Dancing with Darwin, maybe this review from Science Fiction Lit' will shed some light: Here’s the basic idea: some individual or organisation has developed and released a virus that brings on a permanent psychosis, a mental disorder, different for everyone but definitely 100% contagious. That’s right, over a fairly short period of time, everyone goes crazy. Everyone!

Friday, 1 July 2016

Bill Burr - Why Do I Do This?

I'm sure I've mentioned elsewhere that my real heroes are standup comedians. I came across Bill Burr recently, never having heard of him before. He isn't desperately politically correct, which he doesn't have to be, but is funny, which is the objective.

In any case, the title of this piece set rang a bell, so it's the one I watched. There are others, all doubtless worth a look. Laughs are sometimes needed, so here are some, I hope.

Sunday, 19 June 2016

The Silence of Bob Santana

I had been beginning to wonder if I would ever finish any writing project ever again. I know I'm hardly writing to a waiting world, the paraphrase something I barely remember, but I suppose I should report that I'm just about to release another Dancing with Darwin story. They are my very favourite stories, though individually not much read – (Sumto is demanded, and more Sumto there will be. Soon, for a variable value of soon). I was glad to see the Apocalyptic Fears anthology do well, as the first four Dancing with Darwin stories are there, and that's still probably the best value place to buy them if you wish to.

Why do I like them so well? Maybe because there are endless stories to write – so many that I can't hope to write even a fraction of them myself. Maybe because it si so easy to think of great characters; pick a profession, pick a mental disorder, and you have a story. It's really that easy, though the writing of each story is time consuming.

This one runs to about 30,000 words, which make sit the longest so far, I think. Avalanche and Angelfire, the two people who think they are superheroes, make a return appearance and have the starring roles. As usual, Bob Santana, the OCD reporter, starts the story rolling with a report, and Monica, the studio anchor. They are both a little stressed by this point, but civilization is collapsing around them, so I guess they can be forgiven. Bob is strangely silent at the end of the story, but I know why and will make that clear in the next one of these I write. No promises about when that will be.

To change the mood a little, some personal news for those who are interested in that kind of thing. I've lived in the same apartment for seven months, which is a record for recent years. My charming mother has her own place, and my brother is more responsible for making that happen than I was. Having separate the impossible from the possible, we have made the possible happen. I think both she and I are somewhat relieved. I still keep an eye on her finances, still action some things for her, but have taken a big step back from the – for me – very distressing position of 'being in control.' I really don't like being in control of any aspect of anyone else's life. Control is for the individual, not for others, not for me. She seems happy enough, though I know she also chaffs under the restrictions of having to maintain a home and stay in it. We have different reasons for doing so, because we are different people, and the timing is mostly coincidental, but I know we both share the same travel-bug and blame whichever ancestor is responsible for putting it in the genetic mix. Still, there are benefits to putting down roots. My partner (no sense trying to figure out in what sense I mean the word as I'm not too sure myself) just bought some patio furniture for the patio I/we have a patio so it seemed an idea to have somewhere to sit when it suns, (which it isn't at the moment, it rains instead). Not a big deal for some, but for me a big commitment. The chairs are comfortable. I guess they will still be comfortable the next time I sit on one; and the commitment comes in right there – that I will still be here to do that in weeks and months to come.

Now I'm looking at other unfinished stories and looking to see which one will move if pushed a little. Sumto would be easiest, perhaps, but I'm not quite ready for that degree of involvement in the psyche of a character. Sumto takes a lot of 'being him' to write honestly, and I won't short change the reader by cheating. That would be unfair. Besides which, Sumto wouldn't put up with it and I'd make no real progress anyway. The stories are there, building like storm clouds, and I expect there will be a spate of releases when the storm breaks. Just not quite yet.