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Memores acti prudentes futuri

Shown to the place you fold
there's nothing to be without it
A few words
"When we describe the Moon as dead, we are describing the deadness in ourselves. When we find space so hideously void, we are describing our own unbearable emptiness."
~ D.H. Lawrence

"Is the meaning of life defined by its duration? Or does life have a purpose so large that it doesn't have to be prolonged at any cost to preserve its meaning?"

"Living is not good, but living well. The wise man, therefore, lives as well as he should, not as long as he can... He will always think of life in terms of quality not quantity... Dying early or late is of no relevance, dying well or ill is... even if it is true that while there is life there is hope, life is not to be bought at any cost."
~ Seneca

"People will tell you nothing matters, the whole world's about to end soon anyway. Those people are looking at life the wrong way. I mean, things don't need to last forever to be perfect."
~ Daydream Nation

"All Bette's stories have happy endings. That's because she knows where to stop. She's realized the real problem with stories-- if you keep them going long enough, they always end in death."
~ The Sandman: Preludes & Nocturnes

"The road now stretched across open country, and it occurred to me - not by way of protest, not as a symbol, or anything like that, but merely as a novel experience - that since I had disregarded all laws of humanity, I might as well disregard the rules of traffic. So I crossed to the left side of the highway and checked the feeling, and the feeling was good. It was a pleasant diaphragmal melting, with elements of diffused tactility, all this enhanced by the thought that nothing could be nearer to the elimination of basic physical laws than deliberately driving on the wrong site of the road."
~ Vladimir Nabokov, Lolita

"It is easier to forgive an enemy than to forgive a friend."
~ William Blake
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A Distant Soil (Some nudity)
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dead winter (has some explicit stuff)
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Ad nauseam [4P]
Monday, March 20, 2017
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A little bit about motivation
Sunday, March 19, 2017
I was looking through Brain Pickings today and ended up on this page:

Mary Oliver on the Measure of a Life Well Lived and How to Maximize Our Aliveness

Just thinking about this excerpt from the poem posted there:
You could live a hundred years, itís happened.
Or not.
I am speaking from the fortunate platform
of many years,
none of which, I think, I ever wasted.
Do you need a prod?
Do you need a little darkness to get you going?
Let me be as urgent as a knife, then,
and remind you of Keats,
so single of purpose and thinking, for a while,
he had a lifetime.

In a sense, darkness does help me get going. While I primarily move towards self-improvement, that was spurred by initial feelings of deficiency. Remembering the worst times in my life inspires me to cherish the good times I have and maintain my life enough to avoid anything like the worst times again. If I let the darkness of my life fade, I don't think I'd have as much motivation to live fully.


I saw Get Out with Esther today at the theatre. It was pretty good, but we both wondered about a certain plot point and never resolved the issue we had with it. I was glad for the conversation we had, although I was pretty sleep-deprived since the movie was a bit before 11 AM and I didn't even come home until like 3:30 AM. We talked about racial politics and financial investments and relationships and how it feels when people objectify you with their pity. Later in the day she came to my house for dinner, and we made spaghetti and kofta together, then I showed her my ex keepsakes and some pictures of two of the things I've loved most in my life. There was some sadness involved in knowing that I'll never have those things again, but it was bearable. Still, I can't help but wonder if I'll ever smile again like I did back then.

I have hopes that the hard times won't last forever, but I have an unwavering uncertainty that good times will come back. I don't mean that I think I'll never be happy again, but I always wonder if my most realistic option is a life of minimized pain, rather than maximized happiness. It often feels like I have so much more to lose than I have to gain, and I feel very risk-averse as a result. How much of my life is structured around this idea?

It's almost 3 AM now, and I know staying up this late isn't a great idea, but this time of night always makes me really contemplative, and then I just want to write or mull over my thoughts and memories.

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Thinking better
Thursday, March 16, 2017
I remember when I was 18 and I was just soaking up this stuff like a sponge:

"Critical Thinking" from QualiaSoup.

In retrospect, I feel very lucky that I got into the stuff I did at that age. Things could have turned out a lot differently, and I could have developed in ways I'd consider less positive. That's not to say I haven't messed up in various ways, and I've certainly made a lot of mistakes, but I feel like I started off on a good path. Could've done much worse than getting into rationality and starting to think more critically about the world and myself. Reconsidering my own beliefs and thought processes was pretty key to trying to understand other people (and myself) better, and if I'd never questioned things, I think I'd be... well... less receptive to learning than I am now.

It also helps that I was close to people who challenged me and my worldviews. Kyle figured into that first, and then Max. And my fourth ex certainly challenged me a lot, though it wasn't always in ways I'd consider particularly nice. Still, even if they were hard criticisms to take, I do feel like I grew from them. Trying to be a more reasonable person takes a lot of admitting that you're wrong about things and seeking a more informed perspective, but I'm doing better with that than I used to...

Was thinking about writing a letter which I may or may not eventually send, but I definitely don't feel ready to send something like that yet, despite how long it's been. It would just be an explication of my changing understandings and interpretations of things, and I don't know that the recipient would really appreciate it or care.


Working with my group for school this past quarter has been probably the worst group experience of my academic career as an adult. I spent most of my afternoon feeling enraged at one of my group members for doing a terrible job of her part-- she wrote it in unintelligible run-on sentences with hideous formatting with bizarre random capitalization-- and having to hold back from just losing it and lashing out at her as she texted me dozens of times and emailed me repeatedly about edits to the paper. I feel better now, at least, but ugh, dealing with this level of incompetence and stupidity was making me just unreasonably angry.

I went out and ranted to my dad about this girl and he told me a story about an extremely incompetent guy he had to work with once, who was just mind-bogglingly bad at following directions. I feel like my dad is really funny, but it's hard to translate his humor into words because it relies so much on gestures and expressions/tone of voice. He likes to make videos of himself building projects, but I don't think we have a lot of videos of him just... talking and joking around. He makes the rest of my family laugh, though.

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The window is closing [4P]
Wednesday, March 15, 2017
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Silently conversing with myself
Monday, March 13, 2017
Me: I wish I could Photoshop away my blemishes in real life.
Me: Isn't that just using makeup?
Me: Oh wait yeah I guess so.
Me: Eh that seems like a lot of effort.

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Reflecting on relational trends [4P]
Sunday, March 12, 2017
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My mind is wandering
Friday, March 10, 2017
"Hey" by The Blow.

I can see that now
I did this to myself
Your hair blew around
It was trying to tell me something

From its privileged position so close to your brain
It could see all the things that you couldn't explain
It warned me your smile might get carried away
Starting games that your heart didn't know how to play

You leaned over me and the V of your cleavage whispered
"I believe that you can see you won't get what you want from me
"You won't get what you want from me
Hey, could this not be what you want?
I believe that you can see you won't get what you want from me
You won't get what you want from me
Hey, could this not be what you want for me?"

I can see that now
I did this to myself
I threw my love around
I barely noticed if you returned it
And as I leaned ever closer you leaned more away
All that you wouldn't give I thought I could just take
I said, "Baby please show me everything"
"All the parts I don't like I'm just not gonna see"

"I believe that you can see you won't get what you want from me
"You won't get what you want from me
Hey, could this not be what you want?
I believe that you can see you won't get what you want from me
You won't get what you want from me
Hey, could this not be what you want for me?"

I think it's a good thing that I didn't discover this song earlier than I did, or it might have been unbearable to listen to. Now there's just a distant twisting sharpness to it.

Today I'm thankful for the Wayback Machine. In 2010 I found a lot of things that impacted me in ways I don't know if I'll ever forget, and this was one of them:

Only the Lonely

I was looking for something else, and I found this performance artist's site full of grotesque masochistic projects. It was unlike anything I had ever seen before, and I was appalled, disturbed, and fascinated. I couldn't understand or relate to it at all, but the strangeness of it took me out of myself and gave me something of a break from my own troubles at the time. I looked at this specific performance page a number of times, because for one it was one of the more tame performances, and also because there was something weirdly comforting about the song to me at the time. I'm not into art that seems like its primary goal is to shock, but I felt like this project has... a lot of meanings to be unraveled. It's shocking, but that's not its central purpose, that's more of a side effect of it. This seems like the kind of thing I would like discussing with someone who could approach it in a curious and nonjudgemental manner. I wonder if I could talk about that with A.? We're getting ice cream tomorrow, so I guess I could tell him about it.

On Reddit I found a social skills subreddit and from my brief glance around, I gathered that one of the common things people ask for help with is not being boring. I don't really know what it is like to be perceived as a boring person; perhaps erroneously, I've always assumed that boringness stems from holding back things that you might say, in which case you just need to be less inhibited, or having poor theory of mind and not understanding the level of detail that is appropriate to tell other people or how other people perceive what you're saying. I wonder if there's any research on the phenomenon of being boring? Just-- what is it, why does it happen, and so on. Maybe something to look into at another time.

Time keeps slipping away from me somehow, I feel like I blink and it's two, three hours later than I expected. :S I need to go to bed...

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Potential fun plans
Wednesday, March 8, 2017
It's not a happy song, but this makes me smile.

"What's That Perfume You Wear?" by Jens Lekman.

But she's gone forever
And however hard that might feel
At least it was real
If it could hurt like that

I guess just the rhythm and the beat and the energy of it make me feel good, despite the subject matter.

A. and I have been talking about more shows we could potentially go to! There are some things in May that look interesting, but that's kind of far off. There's also a late night movie showing at a theatre near me that I asked if he'd like to go to, and he said it looked fun, so we might do that after I get back from spring break. I like having someone to do fun things with. I guess that it helps that there are fun things to do here, haha. He just introduced me to a new band, and I like a handful of their songs, although apparently they're hated in Canada? I dunno.

I went to a focus group on campus today that was about the admissions experience and general school experiences, but it turned out that it was supposed to be for freshmen and they invited me by accident. I got free pizza out of it though, so no complaints.

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