Monday, December 22, 2008

A new development

Sylvester has started biting my toes through the comforter in the morning after 6:15, which is the first time the alarm fires in the weekdays.

I thought it was cute at first, but after some reflection, it makes me angry.
  1. I'M in charge here, not some stupid cat!
  2. It's never Andrea's toes

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Thoughtful thoughts

I read this on MetaFilter, and it rang pretty true:
Anything is one of a million paths [un camino entre cantidades de caminos]. Therefore you must always keep in mind that a path is only a path; if you feel you should not follow it, you must not stay with it under any conditions. To have such clarity you must lead a disciplined life. Only then will you know that any path is only a path, and there is no affront, to oneself or to others, in dropping it if that is what your heart tells you to do. But your decision to keep on the path or to leave it must be free of fear or ambition. I warn you. Look at every path closely and deliberately. Try it as many times as you think necessary. Then ask yourself, and yourself alone, one question. This question is one that only a very old man asks. My benefactor told me about it once when I was young, and my blood was too vigorous for me to understand it. Now I understand it. I will tell you what it is: Does this path have a heart? All paths are the same: they lead nowhere. They are paths going through the bush, or into the bush. In my own life I could say I have traversed long, long paths, but I am not anywhere. My benefactor’s question has meaning now. Does this path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn’t, it is of no use. Both paths lead nowhere; but one has a heart, the other doesn’t. One makes for a joyful journey; as long as you follow it, you are one with it. The other will make you curse your life. One makes you strong; the other weakens you. (105-06)

-- Carlos Castaneda, Teachings of Don Juan (1968), quoted here

I feel like I'm standing at some sort of crossroads right now, with a thousand upon a thousand paths in front of me.
I think the real goal now is to find out which ones genuinely have a heart, and which ones I have the heart to do.
Complicated and confusing. I'm just glad I'm fat so I don't want to be a professional athelete, too.
(speaking of which, I just found out yesterday I've got athelete's foot, and have probably had it for almost 2 decades. I am Nurgle, Lord of Pestilence and Decay)

Friday, December 12, 2008

Brief update

Nothing huge. Hey to the potential visitors from Dundee. Hope you enjoyed the show last night.

Sorry for not writing much currently; I'm working very hard on things related to eventually not wearing pants at work.

Also, turns out ChicagoStandup.net gets a shitload of hits on a weekly basis, so I need to improve it, stat.
Look for an update in a week or two for that silly little site, and a slow ramp-up to old-timey blogging frequency in the next year. Techie things have been intruding. I'm not happy about it either.

(but if you like techie stuff, I'm also blogging over at johnbarrytech.com but it's work/computer related and intentionally not offensive or swearie)

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Zzzzzzzzzzzzz

My weekday mornings start in one of two ways - either NPR gently glides into my ear or one of the cats jumps on my back and starts kneading. Cat experts say it's an instinctual nursing reflex, I think they're trying to find an artery and end my life. <tangent>Cat experts are the "automotive global warming deniers" of feline zoology. They can't admit to cats' plans for dominance because that would put them out of work. </tangent>

No matter how I wake up, I answer it the same way: smack the offending source to trigger Snooze. I love Snooze. It's the cheapest of drugs I do; that slide back into pseudo-sleep in the morning feels better than anything else I'll feel that day. I imagine it's like crack - a 9 minute trip into pleasure cut short by a hideous crash. Or a traffic report, since this isn't actually crack.

In college, my freshman year roommate grew to hate me and my 8 o'clock class. I woke up for it a total of 12 times, but set my alarm for it every single morning, hitting snooze until snooze turned off. He'd try addressing it with me in the evening - "Hey, you know and I know you're not going to your 8 o'clock tomorrow morning, so can you not set the alarm?"
My inevitable response at 10 PM - "listen, I'm going tomorrow. I need this education."
At 1 AM (drunk) - "I'm going to class man, I'm going to take a nap right after it."
At 7:00 AM: <BEEP BEEP BEEP> <SMACK>
At 7:09 AM: <BEEP BEEP BEEP> <SMACK>
...
At 8:09 AM: <BEEP BEEP BEEP> <SMACK>
Then blissful silence. I couldn't even feel the hate emanating from the bottom bunk.

The major problem is this: whether or not I'd wake up was an unknown quantity, driven only by my motivation level at 7:00 AM. Which is typically utter shit.

Fast forward to my current life, married and cohabitating with a spouse who is anything but a morning person. The same behavior occurs, but the responsibility level is much higher so I eventually drag-ass out of bed and into the shower. I'm not a better person, I've just got a lot more to lose.
It's still the same thing, though - I have NO IDEA at 10 PM whether or not I'll wake up promptly at 6:15 AM or snooze until 7:05 AM, then lurch out of bed swearing at my life.
"God damnit, I'm late again."
The wife just snarls and rolls over.

I don't understand why she doesn't get such an awesome "falling asleep high" but she doesn't. She also doesn't drink so much she falls over vomiting, either. So I guess she's better than me in TWO ways.
Damnit.