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Memores acti prudentes futuri

You're unsure if I am a loose end or a strand
that waits for you to mend or understand
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
Online Radio

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A Distant Soil (Some nudity)
The Adventures of Gyno-Star (Some explicit stuff)
Axe Cop
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Blue Milk Special
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Crunchy Bunches

Curia Regis
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dead winter (has some explicit stuff)
Devilbear: The Grimoires of Bearalzebub (PG-13?)
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Eat That Toast!
The End
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Existential Comics
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Forming (Explicit)

Girls with Slingshots (some explicit stuff...?)
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Legend of Bill
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Love Me Nice
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Natalie Dee
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Robbie and Bobby
Rosscott, Inc.
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Two Guys and Guy

Wilde Life
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Infrequently/No Longer Updating Web Comics
The Abominable Charles Christopher
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A Fine Example
Finn and Charlie are HITCHED

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Ruining other people's sleep schedules [DP]
Monday, May 15, 2017
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Recent friendish person [DP]
Saturday, May 13, 2017
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Culinary mishaps
Sunday, May 7, 2017
So I tried making a recipe from Imgur for Cacio e Pepe. I haven't failed so hard in the kitchen in quite awhile. "Easy" and "simple" were some damn dirty lies.

I have an understanding of where I went wrong in the process, but I can't really undo the mistake. My cheese wasn't grated finely enough, so instead of melting into the water to form a sauce, it instead clumped together into a large gooey mass that stuck to the bottom of the pot and fused into a thick hard brown layer under the pasta. Trying to stir the pasta/cheese around and adding more water didn't really help; the cheese just glommed onto the utensils I was using. It was like swirling a stick around a cotton candy machine, if the cotton candy was a wad of cheese.

Anyway, I stood there stirring it for... oh... probably at least fifteen minutes, maybe twenty, to try to get it to melt. It never fully melted. Eventually I just gave up. Tried eating some of it, and it was edible, but not great. The poster wasn't kidding about it being filling, though. I had maybe 3/4 cup of the pasta and then I was done for the night. Or well, done eating.

It took me well over an hour to clean the pot. :( Fifteen minutes with a scrubby sponge at first, making exactly 0% progress, before I tried finding something that was abrasive to use. All I could find was dishwasher detergent powder. Figured it wouldn't hurt to try, so I poured some of that in and scrubbed more. Still no effect. Poured some white vinegar in, because that can be a good cleaner. Nope, no dice. At that point I realized that I did not have adequate tools for the job, and so I left the pot to soak and went out to the grocery store to get some steel wool. They didn't have plain steel wool, only SOS pads, so I just got some of those. Went back to the house, scrubbed with an SOS pad for twenty minutes, made some headway! I got almost half of the hardened cheese layer off. Arm was getting tired though, and the sink was covered in blue SOS soap goop. I decided to try a different tactic and poured enough vinegar into the pot to cover the cheese layer, then put it on the stove and boiled it for awhile. That actually disintegrated the majority of the cheese that was left, which was nice. I scrubbed away the last bit with a second SOS pad afterwards.

All in all, the whole thing probably took me closer to two hours, but I shaved down my time estimate because I did spend a bit of time in the grocery store looking at other things, so I figured that didn't count towards the cleaning.

Man, though, what an ordeal. On the bright side, I felt VERY accomplished when that pot was finally clean.

After I finally went back upstairs I looked up the recipe elsewhere on the internet and it seems that a lot of people have similar troubles with it, so I felt a bit less embarrassed about how badly it went. Serious Eats (which has never let me down) ran through some good tips on how to do it right and was more specific about all the steps than that random person on Imgur. Too bad I was too lazy to do more research before attempting the recipe. T_T

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Productive love [4P]
Friday, May 5, 2017
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A change in pace in small ways
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
Since I'm going back home after spring quarter, I decided that I wanted to give my therapist a gift, of sorts. I never gave any of my other therapists gifts, but it was never something I really thought was acceptable in the therapy environment. After reading so many different accounts of the therapy process, I'm realizing that it's not nearly as structured as I used to think.

Anyway, I'm not giving her anything expensive or fancy. A few sessions ago I told her about how I like to take long walks on the weekends and take pictures of things, and my desire to take pictures is sort of a barometer for my mood. She asked me what I take pictures of, so I tried to describe some things to her. I thought it would be nice to show her some of my pictures, so I went to the drugstore and bought a few prints using a Kodak kiosk (sidenote: it was my first time using one, but it was pretty easy, and I might do it again in the future). I just picked out a few of my favorite photos from the past few months, like the one with the realization pigeon and the discarded shoe. I don't know what she'll think, but I hope it's not weird. The total cost of the pictures was less than $3, so it won't be a big deal if she turns them down for some reason.

Reflecting on that Kodak kiosk experience, I've come to realize that I get a lot of anxiety about doing new things. I mean, okay, I already knew that, but I've just been noticing it more recently. Like there's this taco truck on my way home from school, and I keep thinking "I should go ask if they'll make me a bean/cheese/rice burrito," because sometimes I feel like having a burrito but I don't want to buy a whole pack of tortillas I probably won't finish just so I can have one burrito that wouldn't be as good as a Mexican restaurant burrito anyway. And I think they probably would totally make me that burrito, and the worst that could happen is that there'd be a bit of awkwardness on my end as I double checked to make sure that they understood I didn't want sour cream or pico de gallo or anything. I have literally been thinking about this for months, but I feel sort of paralyzed about it every time I get the opportunity to go ask. At the same time though, I haven't been consistently wanting a burrito this whole time. I honestly just want to know if I have that option available to me so that if the mood strikes, I know I can go there to get a burrito.

It feels like I have to psych myself up a LOT to do new things. With some things it's not as hard; like, I can go into an unfamiliar store on a whim and not feel overly anxious about it, and I can leave without buying anything and that's okay. Talking to people about stuff can be really hard, though. If someone I know is around though, that almost completely eliminates the paralysis, and I can just try things. There might still be some hesitance, but I feel markedly emboldened by the presence of a familiar person.


Besides getting some photo prints today, I also went to dinner with my new housemate. I was sitting downstairs when he came home, and he asked if I'd want to go out and get a beer with him. I told him I'd be up for going out, but that I didn't drink. We ended up just going out for food a few hours later, at a sort of... world fusion(?) restaurant. I'd been there before, and I got a super delicious kale salad. He got... like three different things (they're small dishes) and a drink, and we talked about a few things. He picked up the tab at the end because my salad was only $9. Really nice of him! I haven't decided what I think of him yet... he seems nice enough, but I also get a slight sense of edge from him. Maybe that's just him being very straightforward and hmm... firm? about things. I want to say "cut and dry" I guess. It's a strong contrast to me. He asked me where the nearest grocery store was today, and it's literally like a five minute walk straight down the street, but I said that and then hedged it with some frantic uncertain "um"s and "I think?"s. So... then he ended up just checking on his phone to verify since I seemed so unsure. >.> I get the impression that he would find my behavior kind of annoying over a long period of time. Good thing I'm not going to be living here much longer.

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More walking
Saturday, April 29, 2017
I walked ~9 miles today, just wandering around the city.

Brought some stale cereal with me and fed seagulls after therapy, which was kinda cool. Also saw a one-legged monk on crutches.

It seemed vaguely metaphorical, but I don't know what it would be a metaphor for.

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Considering my luck
Tuesday, April 25, 2017
I have frequent small moments throughout the week where I feel quite lucky. This is despite the overall theme of my life that seems rather unlucky in some respects (relationships, emotional experiences, etc.).

Today I took a shower and used a bit of styling paste in my hair while it was damp, then dried my hair. (Side note: the container of only 5 ounces, but at the rate I'm using it, it could take years to finish... The stylist at the salon told me it lasted a long time, but I had no idea how true that was when I bought it)

My shower was sometime before 10 AM. A couple hours later, I went downstairs and had some lunch while reading for class, and noticed that the clock said it was getting close to 12:30 PM when I was done. Went back upstairs to my room to do more reading before I had to leave for school. My lips were kind of dry, so I reached for the tub of CeraVe on my shelf next to the styling paste-- and realized that the lip to the styling paste was on top of the CeraVe. I'd forgotten to put the lid back on earlier. How lucky that I found it before leaving the house! I won't be back until late tonight, and my styling paste could have dried out in that time if it were left open.

Anyway, this sort of small lucky event seems to me to happen a lot. The earbuds that I use when I'm walking around have very loose covers that come off almost constantly, and I often realize I'm missing one and have to go look for it. To my great surprise (and appreciation), I have always been able to find the dislodged covers on the ground somewhere. It's really quite amazing.

Similarly, I have gotten into a habit of buying honeydew from the local Safeway because 1) I like honeydew and 2) it's easy to cut up and keep in the fridge as a source of fruit for a few days. Usually it's kind of pricey-- $5.99 for one, but yesterday morning I went grocery shopping and honeydew was on sale! So naturally I bought one, because I couldn't refuse luck like that.

It occurred to me shortly before starting this entry that most or all of these events would probably not seem particularly lucky to other people, and I acknowledge that there is a negative side to them. I could have felt unlucky that I forgot to cover my styling paste. I could also feel unlucky or annoyed that my earbud covers fall off so much and I have to retrieve them. Maybe I could even feel unlucky that a fruit I like to get is usually kind of expensive. If I had that point of view, I think I would be very unhappy with my life. As it is, I feel very grateful for these small favors that the universe seems to provide to me, and I really do feel a sense of pleasant astonishment at my luck.

I really think there is value in trying to find something you truly appreciate in any given situation. This is different than trying to force appreciation for something you just don't appreciate, though. That's fake and it becomes obvious that you're straining yourself for some false positivity. I would liken that to having a bowl of marbles and trying to declare that all the colors are your favorite, whereas searching for what you actually do appreciate would be like digging through the marbles to find the one that is naturally your favorite color. I believe in curating optimism, but not to the extent that it's inauthentic. If it's not coming from a genuine place then it's really pretty useless and defeats the purpose, I think.

Anyway, I feel that this process of searching for the silver lining is helpful to my mental state and general mood. I had to train myself to look for the good things at first (the process was definitely reinforced by Fro suggesting I explicitly record good things), but it often happens automatically now, which is nice.

Then again, maybe I'm just feeling better because the weather isn't as bad, haha.

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Odd things [2P]
Saturday, April 22, 2017
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