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EpicMegatrax writes more bullshit

offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-15 05:51 [#02502025]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict



offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-15 10:21 [#02502026]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i just had this moment where my mind was so fed up with the
word weasel i couldn't remember how to spell it. i had to
look it up to see if it was weasel or weasle. it certainly
wasn't waesle


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-15 10:38 [#02502027]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

the end compromise was this: i wrote three simple commands.
weasel, lazy, and weaselink. the third was where my brain
farted and suddenly i couldn't spell the word before. this
caused me considerable issues when attempting to creating a
symlink in /usr/bin

all three are PHP scripts because i have that memorized best
when it comes to scripting. C++ is more for big things and
desktop apps and it would overcomplicate this.

with PHP i have to look up plenty: what's the argument order
of fopen again? do i want system() or exec()? then duckduck
go has "bang syntax" so i fire up my web browser, to the
home page, and type "!php exec" and it sends me right to the
documentation for the function.

this is why duckduckgo is my home page for the forseeable
future. no other start page offers such brutal efficiency (i
could do my own, of course, but it's more efficient to use
theirs). it makes me feel a tad cybernetic, like the
internet is part of my memory. it also makes me feel like
i'd remember it better if i didn't have the internet.

anyways, weasel sources from a text file with a format of
"weasel_name|||relevant url dot com\r\n" and writing a php
script to parse a file like this is something i've probably
done more times than i've had sex.

a text file like that as a source is easy to maintain and
double-birds the fallback idea of a text file i just
copy/paste from. i had it working in fifteen minutes.

> weasel traffic_synchronicity

lazy is just the lazy_link syntax with the name and link
glued in.
> lazy test fing
<a href="fing" target=_blank>test</a>

weaselink combines the two:
> weaselink rainbow_ribbon_cable
<a href=""

satisfies my conditions of equal parts elegance and brutal
reality. modular, something i can build on later. focused.
unlike me


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-15 10:41 [#02502028]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i should note the scripting took me an hour. thinking it up
was in the car; probably ten or fifteen of minutes if you
add up the time quantums.

i was pleased with that, too. not about how fast i did it,
but that it didn't spiral out of control.

the rest of the time tonight: dealing with explosions,
driving, and coming up with a huge data backlog for myself
to type up


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-15 23:45 [#02502033]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

this thread is evolutionary. earlier i referenced the
first post when i meant to reference the second post,
but the first is worth a revisit now:

all spaced-out interludes of bizzare science are genuine
and heartfelt, but poorly thought-out. i could google the
xlt archives; find myself confidently stating something as
truth. and now, i know it's wrong. so very wrong. i could
google it right now, but i won't -- it doesn't matter. that
is just how science works

it's very rare that a weasel upgrade is due to
something i've gotten completely wrong. usually i've gotten
it kinda right, sorta, and i find a more precise way to
describe it; refine the weasel. it's not even wrong. i just
put it on the shelf because i've got a power tool with
better batteries but i've still got it in case that conks

i feel like an idiot a lot of the time, but it took me until
now to realize that i always exercise with socks

my clicky big toe is a big pile of confusion;
tactical is pretty darn confunded and his function
call may not return unless i cave and seek actual
information about biomechanics from the internet. that's a
huge can of worms, and i like to roll my own, so i've been
putting it off for later. like: this is thread that will be
relevant in the future, but not now. how could i miss that i
was wearing socks? after all that about my toe.

i'd say it's not my best day for science, but really it's
all the rest o


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-15 23:52 [#02502034]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

f the days that got it wrong.

i also feel like an idiot that i didn't tear into breathing
and such more until now. when i said, "oh, having thousands
of little tuned neural oscillators that are phased locked
to thousands of things sounds too resource-hungry, and it's
probably seven or eight of them that function as working
memory for rhythm."

when it wrote that it passed my mind that there are
brainwaves. i speak of alpha waves here and there; clearly i
knew it. but, the heart and the lungs are pretty important
oscillators, and they definitely do their darndest to sync
to the beat sometimes.

i spent some time on breathing years ago. now, like all
this, i tear in there and find it's a whole universe of
tangents and my old solution was a mess. an ugly hack. more
weasels to debug.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-16 02:36 [#02502035]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

patterns of patterns of patterns. deep mind turns a stock
image of a pagoda and some eyes into an acid meme phenomenon


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-16 02:51 [#02502036]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

so i realized there was some old leary-grade old battletank
hippie architecture called intelligence squared, or i^2.
some debate club for nerds like me has eaten the relevancy
and bad boy wiki-p has nothing for me. nothing for SMI2LE,
either. jimmy, man, what are you doing?

i read some blurb about it in 2006 and it seemed fancy in
the same way as mckenna's interstellar travellers. like, oh,
i'd really like to buy into this, but i can't let myself.

traffic synchronicities are probably full of confirmation bias.
however, synchronicities are something i've studied and
attempted to dissect for years (along with synaesthesia). i
haven't even written a tenth of it up. traffic
synchronicities are a thing in a long chain of things and
why i'm allowing myself to buy into it has everything to do
with the fact that it logically follows from all sorts of
other stuff.

pretty much, it feels like it's working, it's a logical step
in a progression, and the brutal but honest moral inventory daemon
has not yet garbage-collected it.

calling it a daemon was nice to properly explain it for the
hyperlink, but i'll move this over to being called
bullshit weasel now.

like: when i'm hassling myself about slipping up on a
superstition, i ask myself: am i cursed? bullshit weasel
throws a shitfit and tells me this is irrational dreck, fire
up the debugger, figure out what's really happening you
ripe-mellon'd hippie


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-16 03:03 [#02502037]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict | Followup to EpicMegatrax: #02502036

why study traffic synchronicites? or any of this? a
worthwhile question. the answer is: why not?

my mother probably said something to herself like,
"EpicMegatrax is really good at computers, but he is also
weird in a way that is so deeply foreign to me that i feel
like he needs some new spark plugs or something." so she
took me to all sorts of doctors, which i quickly grew to
hate. i have been "diagnosed" with ADD, then depression,
then bipolar-disorder. next i was told i registered on the
"autistic spectrum" -- a whole rainbow of dysfunction! --
but that i didn't actually qualify as autistic. then some
sort of anxiety disorder. all of these are at least a little

none of them really sum up what a weird-o i am, though. i
generally go with ADD because it's about right to warn
people about what they're in for.

meanwhile, i have met people who are autistic. or even
autistic-lite, aspergers. at a party this guy was playing
back the trumpet part of some bach something-or-other. i was
absolutely enraptured by it, mostly, because, well, i was a
tad jealous. not very, though, because everyone else in the
room was staring at us and less amused. he nailed the
trumpet part but he was not using his indoor trumpet. it was

i get so wrapped up in something like playing with a
doorstop spring that i don't realize it's making people
cross. but i do understand politeness, and indoor trumpets,
and i've generally trained myself to look around sometimes
and make sure i'm not doing it. again... but, it's much
better. almost to the point where looking around to see if
i'm doing it is a wasteful weasel; no longer needed.

no, i am not autistic, but i'm on the, er, spectrum. ADD
works, kinda. depression feels like when i've thought myself
into a deep hole. bipolar disorder produces similar
trainwrecks, but no, i am just terminally excited and rush
in without thinking and then get myself in a fine mess, and
yes, then i feel like crap


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-16 03:15 [#02502038]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict | Followup to EpicMegatrax: #02502037

pretty much, these things don't fit. the idea of being taken
into a shop like a car and have a part of my soul swapped
out and "fixed" was always offensive to me. now, there's a
lot more depth to that offense.

bottom line is: alright, shit, i'm weird. got dang it mang.
there is no escaping it. so let's it in a room with it and
hug it and figure out what it likes for lunch.

there's some genetics, some bits of what all those disorders
what they are, but more or less what i decided is that this
is what you get when you take somone who is compulsive to
the point of being on "the spectrum" and have him spend more
time with compilers than people until college or so. makes
sense i'd have a pretty magnetic inner world always sucking
me off to tinker with things in a bubble of beatiful
perfection. now i'm off in some purgatorial plane where i've
turned the machine on itself.

jung said something for his "red book" -- drawing it out
paper will seem crude; banal. but it's vital to get it down,
even if you can't draw for shit. it's necessary for the red
book's use of hierarchical cache. like my ugly php weasel


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-16 03:46 [#02502039]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i was always waiting for the next doctor to tell me i have
OCD, just like my mom was always expecting them to perform
some mysterious doktor magick rite and "Fix Me." i see this
like considering a school bus broken because it can't drive
underwater. like: look, mom, my brain is what it is. there's
not some mad scientist switch in there to flip. it was meant
well but it was doomed and only made me weirder.

i had some deeplying harrowing experiences on things like
scary old tricyclic antidepressants and more. when i was
ten, i was out of sorts. my mom wanted this solved, like,
right now. my doc was on vacation, and the on-call doc gave
me... something. thorazine, was what the thought. maybe i
promptly had a seizure.

the doctors all collectively said: shit. we're gonna
get sued. quick, blame a diagnosis! thus, it was proposed to
my parents that part of my brain was not actually there.
that i was born without whatever lobe. or aliens took it,

consequently: your child needs to sit in a bed with EKG
leads all night and have his whole brain MRI'd. pull him out
of school for a week.

all of my brain was there. i know, because i had it all
scanned. the doctors faded out their bullshit solo with:
well, er, call us if it happens again, but it probably
won't. because we fucking caused it; whoops. i am more or
less a mad science experiment from day one.

i have always compared psychiatric meds to watering a garden
with a firehose. i said this when i was eighteen as my
parting words to the last one i'd ever have to suffer; off
to college.

i still feel that metaphor is succinct. something like
risperdal shuts off a lot of things that could be salvaged,
and then part of your brain is missing.

gardening has become a metaphor that clicks into this
perfectly. i now hate the firehose approach with a nuance
and depth that only i can manage


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-16 04:01 [#02502040]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

if you tear down the aspects of me that sync up with OCD, it
works like this: coding, machines, and such are controllable
and predictable. the only limit on this is yourself, your
mind, and if the code fails because you messed up somehow.
the outside world is messy and unpredictable and
overwhelming. an alpha wave state becomes my safe place in
an attachment theory sense, and, well, that's why i probably
spend more time in there then sleeping.

compulsiveness about things like variable names, brutal
honesty, and making sure everything in my car has a
dedicated home... it's anxiety meeting code/engineering in
the middle. all these things give me something i can count
on in an unreliable world, and this is why i freak.
out. if someone uses a style of variable names i deem
to be sloppy, or some producer big-ups "shonky" gear, well, then you're having me
simulate how this would pan out in my mind and seeing
disasters and explosion and doom.

it is why nerds have pocket protectors and arguments about
whether the millenium falcon could be the entireprise. it is
also why they are so easy to troll


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-16 04:12 [#02502041]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i don't have OCD, though. i have that dial set to seven and
people with OCD have it set to twelve. it is all centered
around logic and argument. it's why i'll be
indistinguishable from someone with OCD in certain
context... until i realize it's wrong, it's my fault for
getting it wrong, and i need to fix it, dammit.

it is extremly similar to what i've done with notions.
irrational compulsiveness is filtered through a brutal
crucible of logic.

OCD people just do the thing because they can't help it. i
do it because i almost feel like my life depends on it. this
is not absolute, though. if logic tells me: well, yes, this
matters, but this other thing matters more, then i go
for that.

a lot of my indulgance in superstition and all of it boils
down to: why not? again. i consciously sat there and decided
that i'd now have a lucky lighter and this would be it,
yessir. then when it began to run low, i was biting my
nails. how do i hack my way out of this corner? i went to
the same exact store, bought an identical lighter, and threw
out the old lucky lighter before it ever ran out of
luck/butane. then when i slip up on it for the first time in
ages, i'm arguing with it: this is a 70% yes, bad news, but
no, not a 99.9% vibe. it also may not even be one.

i'm pressing on all these angles the way most people tense
up when they're worried they're about to get into an
accident. compulsiveness is channeled, garbage-collected,
refined. like my life depends on it. now i'm so deep in that
it essentially does.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-16 04:37 [#02502042]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

it's not hard to flip over and demonstrate this can be a
superbly functional thing (at the price of driving myself
insane all day long). when picking a scheme for your
variable names takes on the urgency of life and death, well,
you pick a good scheme and you stick to it.

then it becomes a reliable structure you can build on. your
code works, the other guy's code doesn't. he hates you
because you've schooled him and you hate him because his
variable names suck. later, on the internet, you scream at
someone for using a sampler you view as shoddy and
unelegant. i've never suffered fools gladly, as the saying
goes. i never considered that this could be a functional
thing instead of a character flaw. it is both at once,

in driving a car, for once, my life actually does depend on
it. poor tactical decisions in my structure of automatic
habits could lead to real, literal, explosions. conscious
focus is a precious and limited resource; i can't stand
wasting it. good habits decrease the cognitive burden and
free me to focus on driving more. to dissect it; do it
better. and since i could really, actually, die, i've gone
suitably overboard.

driving wouldn't be so automatic if i hadn't done all sorts
of compulsive shit: all the widgets have a home. when i turn
on my headlights is a function of A) do i need 'em? and B)
do 2/3 of the other people have them on? etc.

these things are urgently maintained and watched. are the
widgets in the right place? i've checked six times, but i
might have missed something, and that would be a disaster. i
check again. i annoy the living shit out of myself every day
over things like: is the lighter on top of the cigarettes?

this is how i lie in bed stressing i missed a single
semi-colon and finally drag myself out of bed to find i was
completely right. i did miss it. i got out of bed for it
because i am right about this sort of thing quite often.

this was all pretty standard nerd shit until rhythm got
mixed in


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-16 05:44 [#02502043]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i am furious with the level of typos in there, but i am
equally furious where i've only covered two items of
seventeen or so. mostly, though, i am furious that i've
managed to screw both up at once, and the only reason i have
is because i wanted to write it down now instead of

i understand my insomnia very well, even though i can't flip
some mad scientist switch and turn it off. i can drown my
whole brain in booze until it stops, but that's like getting
a time-share condo in risperdalville. i am sure xanax and
benzos would fit like a glove; they appear to be even more
horrible and addictive than alcohol and i've avoided benzos
like i have the boss sp-303.

tripping, though. someone at baseline might ask: "oh, hey,
EpicMegatrax, how are you?" this is a very complicated and
serious tangent on psychedelics. "how am i? like, really,
really how am i?" i first think. next: "i would
usually say i'm good, but now i'm realizing this is a white
lie i tell others." afterwards: "not only do i tell this lie
to others, but i tell it to myself as well." then, rewind
and explode a different branch of complexity: "did this
person mean, like, 'how did i come to exist'?" or, perhaps
they could have meant, "how are you managing to continue to
exist despite all this mess?" that one sounds proper. look
at my studio. it's a mess. all these wires. how do you i
anything done with all these wires?

i'm not sure, but i get less done without them.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-16 05:53 [#02502044]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

yep, my shout-out to reality:

i should be asleep, but i am not asleep. i know i'll fart
things all up if i write about it now.

i try to sleep. lying in bed, i bother myself about
unwritten things over and over because i've been bothering
myself about them all day, solidly.

then i get up, write, fart it up, try to write an apology,
it comes out three paragraphs of salad and typos, i've
botched the dependancy chain, now i have to write an apology
for the failed apology, now i am going to try to sleep again


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-17 00:08 [#02502048]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

there is exactly one reason why i hadn't torn into breathing
+ the ramifications of breathing is because it is a huge and
complex thing. i have walled myself off from it because i
know i can only do so much at once. i could tackle it, but i
have plenty of other choices. so i put a bit into it to get
the flavor and left it alone until now.

heart rate and breathing are sort of like a carnival game
where you have to throw a baseball through the treads of
spinning wheels with regularly spaced holes. like one of the
center wheels from some construction toy which consisted of
that wheel, and sticks. this is a vague metaphor that will
be tuned up sure enough.

anxiety, tensing up, automatic behavior, and breathing are
all intertwined. old memories live in your muscles and body
like a dog a bone buried and a sock you can't stop
mentioning but still haven't taken off.

so i've been untangling it a bit at a time. exhalation is
the start of the beat; there's my PLL mechanism. i've been
looking at unconscious muscle movement and consciously
analyzing whatever i dig up. i see a charted course from the
roots of that into particular stages of breathing. breathing
touches everything at once, and all the old ghosts wake up,
very slightly.

but it's a huge pile of evolutionary crap and if i break
something the whole system could get down and i'll get fired
and this would be unacceptable. i have to walk around it
consciously and figure it out, then things i might need to
fix will propose themselves naturally. after enough of that
i'll start to see ways into the fixes, and which fixes
matter. then whip in at 12am and swap out a targeted piece
that constitutes 1/10 of the project, maybe. people will be
flooding in tomorrow and they will all be trying very hard
to break it. also, now that i am fussing with it, anything
that's not my fault can now be blamed on me as well.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-17 00:19 [#02502049]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i've had the moment where i was suddenly unable to
spell weasel a thousand times before. at least.

it's similar to the moment when you're walking up stairs,
and think there's another step... but there's not; your foot
comes down on dead air instead of a step. i have absolutely
never been able to fool myself into doing this deliberately.
this has only happened to me a few dozen times in my life. i
collect these things. they fascinate me.

i'd type up a post in yugo where i'd type up duntst duntst
like a techno beat, to a techno beat, or just rhythmically
keysmash to an autechre track. i tried to find the latter to
link it, but i can't, since i can't remember enough. i
remember the title is the song i was mashing to, but i can't
remember which songs i did and so i'm up shit creek. it's
very heard to keyword search for autechre translated into...

but, anyways, i'd type onomatapoeia or something and there's
when my brain would reliably glitch. suddenly i was looking
at the correct spelling and i was seriously worried... is
that spelled wrong? that looks so weird. is that right? and
then i snap out of it quick enough. this time i had to
internet search for weasel. so i suppose a really, really
long staircase is most likely to get you at the top.

weasel is a metaphor, and metaphors are like that
construction toy with which you procedurally plug the
toruses into the sticks. metaphors are the toruses,
obviously. the sticks are neural connections, and then this
is built into something that's about the size of russia, if
you adjust for scale.

weaselink. weasel. link. weasel is a link. an abstraction
linking to a deeper, poorly-defined structure that, like
plutonium, i cannot handle directly. i need something fussy
like those fish tanks with glove hands to proceed with


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-17 00:41 [#02502050]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

a bit more on breathing. i was in there, doing what
i've just described. for like, two hours. perhaps more. my
neighbors were being dicks and this seemed like the perfect
time to do nothing but be still and hack another system.

i put on "consumed" by plastikman. i've never heard a single
plastikman album before, ever. i have no idea what his music
sounds like, but i've downloaded a bit, appareltly.
sometime; can't remember when or why, but i presume it's
either because of reputation or recommendation. that's how
connections go.

i saw that lurking in my music folders two or three days
ago. i wasn't sure what i wanted to listen to, and i was
just walking around. i consciously analyzed the existance of
plastikman on my hard drive, and thought, "hmm." then i said
"nah" and put on something else i can't remember.

it caught my eye a second time after examining the weasels
within breathing. i simply thought: "oh, i almost put that
on again a couple days ago, but i didn't. so let's put it on
now." then i found i actually had multiple plastikmen on my
hard drive. if they all had dates i'd have gone with the
first album, but only one did. maybe two. so i just went on
the words. i had no idea what i was in for. didn't even know
the style or genre, just "electronic."

turns out it's a minimal album that was perfect for
continuing to hack on breathing... and superb, aside from
where he rips off a SAW II melody (pitched up a half-step or
three). after a while i noticed the AC unit's complex
signature of bassy oscillations and rattle was in sync with
both my breathing and the track. not bad. i'll have to try
one of the other albums


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-17 06:31 [#02502051]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

so there's the obvious thing i've mentioned casually but
never discussed: i am forming new weasels/habits all the
time, and not all of them are good. many are unconsciously
soaked up and accidental and alright but not super. i catch
myself trying to develop bad habits all the time. tapping
the gas pedal in time is one thing i have to fight a lot to
stop myself from getting into. maybe i should just give up
and let it go do as its weasel mind wishes. most don't fight
that much

then the less-obvious thing, which is that my body/mind
stuff is obviously bleeding into how i drive, gradually.
this is part of what made me feel comfortable looking at
breathing now -- the music machines soaked into dancing and
the car, now dancing has soaked into the car as well, so i
figure if i just continue as i've been doing then what soaks
through into that by accident will generally be pretty good.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-17 06:39 [#02502052]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

it's not one-directional, though. it all starts to salad and
goulash. i felt some of the things i noticed focusing on
breathing leap out while i was driving tonight, mostly
centered around anxiety. i was lying on the bed tonight and
messing with it, and something startled me. but it was a lot
like a myoclonic jerk -- when you almost fall asleep, but
don't. perhaps that what it was. but the way it made my legs
feel was the same as when something startled me driving

this has just happened once, so let's not make it a weasel
yet, but it's interesting. i feel like i've crafted a
detector for that thing and it caught it happening in the
wild, so to speak. yes, that thing you noticed, i just saw
it again, sir.

it was probably always there, i just never noticed. then
some things i've been on myself: no, don't do that. those
things, well, it's even more interesting: i feel part of
myself begin to do the bad weasel pattern and then another
weasel runs in and shoos it off. it's like my self-heckling
has half-internalized and the notion layer catches my
weasels fighting. which is nice, because if the wrong weasel
wins, i can always step in


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-17 06:46 [#02502053]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

so, if a weasel is a learned pattern, then a ferret must be
a pattern detector.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-17 06:48 [#02502054]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

myoclonic ferret. that sounds like a metal band


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-17 06:58 [#02502055]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i put on a remix of pink elephants one day on a road i love to drive
somewhere between briskly and too briskly. my program
crashes and i'm kicked back into reality, stuck behind a
giant truck. i was annoyed at first, but i decided that,
well, that's more or less an elephant, and this song fits a
slow pace pretty well. i slowed down and it was nothing too
memorable, just lovely.

tonight i'm driving the same road in the other direction. i
was skipping past the end of another album i was no longer
in the mood for and the playlist looped to the start and
that came on. sure, that's good. i also drove like the truck
forced me to.

then i drove by a row of four or five of the exact same
giant truck parked on the side of the road. it gave me the

yes, it's the same road, that truck was on it before, and,
hell, they're doing construction on it. and now i'm at night
and they're parked. but skipping past the end of an album
idly with no intent and landing on that song again at that
moment... and, at the end, without thinking, i opened the
windows at that little "aaah" flute melody comes in at the
end of the song, and air rushed in

there are so many reasons for these coincidences that it's
really nothing earth-shaking or mystical. it seems
thoroughly explained... but, it still amuses me just as much
as it did before i figured any of this stuff out. this is a
relief. i wouldn't want life to get dull


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-17 06:59 [#02502056]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

so, yes, first i decided it was an elephant, and later i got
the parade. somehow i set myself up for that.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-17 07:29 [#02502057]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i sent a text to one of my friends asking if he wanted to
hang out. the phone wasn't getting a signal and said it
would send it when it could, so i started driving.

after a few minutes with no response i began to run numbers:
it's close to the point where hanging out wound entangle us
in the quantum interference of rush hour, and if he doesn't
text me back by the end of this road, i'm going to fire of
another text to cancel it when i get to the stop light and
can send a text. it was a long road and this felt like a
good compromise. i was tempted to do it early, but no, don't
send a text while steering etc. and i didn't. i have a few
hardcore rules, and #1 is: eyes on the road at all times.

so i'm about thirty seconds from the light and he texts me
back saying yes. i go pick him up. a few minutes later he
told me he was debating calling some place to deal with some
mess (he's as bad as me, that's part of why we get along)
when he got my text. if he'd decided to do it promptly he
would have been on the phone when my message got to him, and
i would have sent him the "never mind" by the time he hung
up and checked it.

i guess i almost feel like he would have called promptly
rather than waffling if i wasn't across town stewing on
whether to come pick him up or not right as he was about to
do it. he's like a brother to me and these sort of things
happen quite often.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 03:10 [#02502071]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

yesterday, i felt sharp as a tack. today, i woke up and felt
groggy/laggy. i didn't sleep well; things woke me....

but, less tangentitudinally, the backlog of things to
blather about is also using one of my CPU cores. cycling on
stuff i meant to write already. yes, we've done that. shit;
i'm not getting further because i haven't written about it.

then also exercise, i needed a tad more. and driving, too,
the adrenaline is cleansing and wakes everything up.

i took care of the exercise, the car, and the adrenaline.
now, i'm threading some laundry into some writing


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 03:15 [#02502072]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

a new metaphor: suppose you're one of those recursive
russian-nesting dolls with the other dolls inside the dolls
inside the dolls

that's you, and the layers are everything you've ever done
and experienced. these are older versions of yourself frozen
in carbonite like han solo. they're wired into a giant
pattern-hunting mechanism and things from third grade
repeat as unconscious behavior in high school.

my metaphor breaks down from here, because writing about the
doll getting a hand drill and boring a hole in itself is a
bit gruesome


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 03:21 [#02502073]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i feel more like what i've been doing is forming neural
connections from my conscious mind to subsystems that were
previous unconscious. my basic goal at the start (and it
continues now) is to figure out what's in there. clear out
what crap i can. fix what i can.

but as i've put more time into consciously analyzing my
unconscious actions, i've started to catch glimpses of how
the mechanisms of attention, memory, emotion, breathing,
etc. push all the trains of thought around. so, not a
russian-nesting doll boring a hole. i'm boring, sure, but
i'm more like a small debugging module that has spiraled out
of control and begun taking over the host computer

this all roughly jives with pranayama, from what i remember
of it. oh, when it's eaten the host computer, that's where
the feedback loop will max out and i'll be forced to
optimize something else.

breathing and heart rate stirred up images of the caduceus
in me today. yes, sure, heart rate spirals around breathing
and there are certain branch points archaic traditions refer
to as "chakras." the chakra api is too spicy for me and
bullshit weasel didn't like it much either. he told me: a
stopped clock tells the right time twice a day. figure out
what's crap and what isn't or you'll go full ken kesey


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 03:53 [#02502074]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

my first car moment of adrenaline today was chasing a
motorcycle. i could tell he was itching to burn it out. many
guys on bikes are, and the lines of the bike tell you if
this is some leisurely guy on a harley or a young guy on

this was the latter. i couldn't even see the bike, but i
could tell from the engine which class of motorcyclist this
was. i kept up a moderate clip because we were inching
through a twisty narrow side-street that many people blast
through. lots of near-misses.

from experience, i know this. i also know which parts of my
lane are effectively not my lane -- they are a warzone. at
best, occupied territory. the bike is not going to do his
imminent crazy shit on this road. if he were that suicidal,
he'd have done it already. so let it be for the moment and
focus on hugging my side of the road, doding incoming cars,
and listening to v-proc by autechre.

my rough plan is this: sandbag it until the part at 1:20
when sean and rob drop the hammer, then drop the hammer. i
figure we'll both get a good run out of it and i'm only
sandbagging to wait for the right moment in the song.

anyways, we're about 20 or 30 seconds into the track when
i'm on the narrow warzone of a side-street, turned at 45
seconds (guesstimate, again), and i'm sandbagging from 50
seconds; i have to hold him for 30.

sandbagging is an art. too much and the hammer has been
dropped early. you need to build anticipation. too little
and he'll cut around me illegally. i lose him early around
1:05. dammit. he snuck it in early. i shrug and wait for the
next downbeat to chase after him.

he was pretty quick and i really had to gun it and focus to
keep up. all my systems tell me this was stupid, but for
once bullshit weasel has a positive word: that was worth it

never chased a bike like that before. may never again. i
didn't get too close and i didn't do anything flat-out
stupid. call it a systems check slash test/debug run


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 04:03 [#02502075]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

my second moment of adrenaline was when cheesy rave music
was getting into me hardcore and stuck the gas to the floor
like chewing gum. my notions were thick and accurate.
beautiful moments of spotting the precise moment to cut
around the occasional slow car, keeping everything in time.

this is where notion-layer gets into the grey and becomes a
greydiant instead of a singular result. i'm consciously
tearing through it all and looking for a way out. faster.

plans come together consciously and are implemented
consciously, but notions are yelling from the backseat here
and there with something i've missed.

a traffic light stops me; i refuse to let it stop me
entirely. i lose my shit dancing. the song on is special to
me. it's incredibly fruity and cheesy, but i was listening
to it alone one day, and i figured: fuck it. it makes me
happy. i'm alone. who cares? and since then i've been making
an effort to enjoy this track when i'm not alone.

i'm getting better at it, but completely losing my shit to
the point where it probably looked like two people were
fucking in the backseat of my car (wwwobbble) at a very
crowded intersection is more than i'm usually able to
manange. the adrenaline had me, though. the green light did
too, perfect.

as it was winding down notion-layer told me to skip back a
few to a previous track; i did. i pull up to a red light as
it's opening, and it goes green precisely in time with the
bassy boom of the song clearing its throat. i don't floor it
a lot, but i floored it.

the details are exciting but irrelevant sans one part: even
in all this, i was seeing the mechanisms a bit. how i was
observing three lanes and the cars: oh. the lanes are
faders and the cars are sonic impulses on the fader's track.
i wonder what else from music glued itself in there


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 04:11 [#02502076]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

knowing when to change the track to sync it up with the
green light is something i could probably learn to do
consciously, for a handful of lights. it would take me days,
weeks, even months.

my subconscious mind is observing this intersection for the
912th time and it's been through these patterns so many
times it's bored. i'm consciously working on driving to a
beat and it pitches in by lobbing me pattern matches to glue
into the weasel that presses the bluetooth controls on the
steering wheel, and i'm synced up.

my subconscious is then slightly less bored, but still
bored, so it figures out some lights i've only been through
around 400 times and how to generate playlists to match
them. the next day, when i'm saying, "hmm, what tracks do i
want?" the notion-layer more or less spews me a printout.
then i say, "what roads do i want to take?" and it's a mix
of consciously chewing through data like time of day,
traffic, mood, agenda, etc. but it is undoubtedly
unconsciously influenced by other things, like the playlist
i've programmed in.

so then i go off with the notion-printout playlist
programmed into my smartfone and the route (a team
conscious/subconscious effort) programmed into GPS weasel,
and focus on refining the way i hit the manhole cover i know
is coming around the next curve so it's in time to the

like the construction trucks, this all seems pretty explainable
to me, even if i'll never pin down precisely how i'm doing
it. and it's still delightful when it happens, even if it's
not as much of a mystery to me any more.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 04:26 [#02502077]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

long ago, i was studying cellular automatae for a class. i
loved the lil' buggers then, and i still do now. one bit was
particularly beautiful to me, though: using it to simulate
realistic traffic patterns. i was going to high school in
the city; i didn't even have a learner's permit... but, i
was already watching all these things from the passenger

the bit that stuck out amongst it all is this: traffic looks
a lot like a school of fish. slow cars, red lights, will
cluster cars together. gaps in between. it's simple and
brilliant and more the rule than the exception.

when i learned to drive, i was already watching for this
pattern. either you're in a school of fish or in between. in
between is where you can cut it loose, but also where you
have to worry about cops. the cops don't fuck with a school
of cars going 85 in a 60 zone, but a single lone car doing
the same might pull them out and they'll light you up.

it also became familiar as an obstacle on the highway: look
at the head of the cluster. who's holding everyone up? where
are the snoozers and where are the guys itching to get ahead
like me? how can i chart a course through this nonsense so i
can go faster?

meanwhile, when i learned about the school-of-fish metaphor,
i could barely even bang a tambourine in time and was just
starting to mess with sonic acid and fruity loops. i wish
someone had taught me about rhythm along with computer


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 04:32 [#02502078]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i expect vastly different behavior from the black acura i
encounter on a popular route to a main artery at 9am than i
do from a light-forest-green subaru forester on a back road
at 11am.

it boils down to this: can i trust this car/driver? can i
trust them to act the way most drivers do? beyond that, what
particular quirks can i expect? i never set out to create
this massive library of personality types, car make/model,
and "car body language" but i have. it's very important to
driving, and that's why it's there.

today i encounted a real goulash of a thing. a rather large,
white, toyota... but, no, that's the big rav4, not nearly as
big as a landcruiser. they're somewhere in between "i'm
wasted" weaving and "i'm sending a text" weaving. the car
says mild soccer mom but the driving says something else. is
it dad texting after two beers? is it junior, 17 with a new
license, and a bunch of his buddies, goofing off so much
it's as bad as texting? i never found out.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 05:27 [#02502079]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

let me tell you the story of my, er... well, it's where the
car would have an ashtray if cars still came with ashtrays,
and would still haven an ashtray if i'd bought one from the
car's manufacturer. i didn't i bought a cupholder one from
walmart for $1.67 instead of their less-convenient one for
$45 or whatever. these are the sort of stupid trivial things
i've always agonized over, and then given myself grief over
it (for wasting valuable agony).

anyways, it's a 2 high by three 3 wide by a pack of
cigarettes plus ~$2 of spare change in depth. at first i
kept lighter, cigarettes, and gum in a perfectly-fitting
rectangle. cigarettes on top, gum bottom left, lighter
bottom right. taking out either the gum or the lighter left
the pack of cigarettes sitting so that removing either left
enough of an opening that i could easily mash it back in
with no fuss.

but, there were bugs: the pack of gum gets mashed after a
while; snags the lighter. then it's a mess. lighter won't go
in, gum everywhere. and i'm mad at this shit happening for
the fourth time in a month and i stop putting the gum in

but then the lighter's on the bottom and always turning to
the side. finding new awkward ways to annoy me. so i began
to put the lighter on top of the cigarettes, and that's
where we are now, until something annoys me enough to change

irritation, frustration trigger the conscious mind to step
in and reconfigure unconscious patterns that are repeatedly
sending you into a wall. i do this for everything. all my
stuff goes into a particular pocket. wallet and keys right.
phone left.

then i got to stewing on how another bug happened again;
pocket crash. disaster. can't get a darn thing out of there.
"i need a solid plastic box or something," i think.

then i realized i'd just re-invented the pocket protector. i
had never sat down and stewed on that old nerd stereotype,
but it makes perfect sense. this is not OCD. this is
run-of-the-mill nerd.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 05:55 [#02502080]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

oh, yes, there's one of things i systemically forget but remembered
because i wanted to write it up. then i lost it again;
forgot i'd made a note to write about it. the data was
recovered while i was taking a shower just now.

i was doing something complicated like unwrapping a stick of
gum, driving to music, and thinking about my nonsense when a
deer ran into the road. despite all this, i came to a
screeching halt faster than most people would even when
completely focused. it's a huge relief when something goes
wrong like this, because it allows me to see: yes, this
still works. despite all this. works super.

then bullshit weasel tells me there are certain things i
know i should leave for when i'm at a traffic light, and
perhaps these is one of those things. my foot had the brake
no problem, but if i'd needed my second hand on the wheel to
go evasive it could have been an issue.

always arguing about where the line is tends to lead to
better mechanisms and overall innovation. it pushes me to
improve without pushing me so hard i overdo it and cross
over into stupidity. i cannot stand stupidity; especially in


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-18 07:53 [#02502081]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

so that's about a third of my backlog, above. then i go for
a drive; now it's only a quarter. and i'm arguing with
myself about infrastructure again: the weasel scripts are
good, but i'm not using them. too many things go unlinked.
my thread has a leg-wound; coherency gushing out all over
the carpet.

problem A is that i don't have it all cataloged and if i
don't have one in my library, then i get lazy about linking.
problem B is that copy/pasting from the terminal is awkward,
suggesting that i reconsider using some more automation.

i made them commands so i could do something cheeky with
grep later, so there's a path into that. doesn't solve the
terminal issue, though. or the incomplete index. the codex
waesle. we needs that too

do i deal with the backlog or work on this? do i at least
sort out the dictionary, but leave the script upgrade for
later? yes, sure. or should i just clear out the backlog
first? i'm back to the initial question. the notion-layer
answers: no, now.

yes. it's bad enough. it will only continue to bother me.
i'll sort out the dictionary by mining through one by one...

i think i'm caching my consciousness to hard disk in a forum
thread. reading it all back linearly is a great idea to
improve general coherency trends. i really should.

but i should fix the scripts first. either axe it or do it
right; and i don't want to axe it. now that i know it's a
caching mechanism, a lookup table is no longer a casual

i wrote them in php, so gluing a web interface onto it is
trivial. that solves the terminal. then portability; i am
hosting this on my local box and debated putting it on a xen
vps. but then i'd have to login to a terminal... but, no,
not with a web interface. there's the next metaphor


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 01:01 [#02502130]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

ah, screw it. i have to swap a bit more out to disk

there are all sorts of mechanisms of reactions that i've
been earthing that essentialy boil down to: well, yes. that
works. that's what i decided. conscious effort to do this or
that driving gets buried in russian-nesting doll layers. but
it's weird seeing how they've grown, sort of like trees
planted a long time ago.

one rule i made up for myself after i began to get good (and
did some stupid shit) was that if i'm going fast, abort at
any sign of a problem. if i have to argue with myself about
whether it's a problem, then that's still a problem, and i
should still abort. stop, slow down, whatever.

it's a very deep thing that got buried, like a tree growing
around the edge of a fence. the adrenaline rush has the plug
pulled at crucial moments, and that's exactly what i want.
exactly what i decided. except it's automatic, and i don't
have to think or fight with myself to drop the emotional
high and abort.

i was going fast on some road this evening. not very fast,
just moderately fast, good for what was arguably a perfect
night to drive. after rush hour has died down and there are
far fewer cars. but also when bikes and such are out. and
people walking dags. u like dags? i do, but not on the road
when driving.

i see a man and an SUV and a large dog of some sort in their
driveway and i reflexively slow down. they aren't in the
road, they are getting in the car, but you never know when a
dog will get loose and dart into the road.

this is something i'm sure i thought about years ago,
decided how to handle, and it got buried with the rest.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 01:08 [#02502131]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

the latency of an animal is constrained by its size,
like the latency of your audio interface is constrained by
your budget... well, also physics. a nerve impulse has to go
from the nose to the tail and back, say. how long is that?
bigger animal, higher latency.

i realized there's a pyramid of things around animals
running into the road. i've never spotted mice until
recently, but now i see them regularly. i think they were
always there and i've just been noticing more. they can take
care of themselves too.

squirrels are territorial animals. you can sit and watch
them heckle each other from trees, this ugly "Haaaugh!"
noise. like a little kid blowing a raspberry. they are
genetically driven to play chicken with cars to defend their
turf. just pretend they are not there. they can react far
quicker than you. they are jerks.

chipmunks can take care of themselves, but are too skittish
to get near roads.

cats are especially quick for their size, almost as quick as
squirrels, because, well, they hunt squirrels. squirrels are
slightly quicker, because cats hunt them.

fox, dog, canines i am slamming on the brakes. some
lumbering things like opoussm that take their time, too.
birds, slam on the brakes.

then you get into deer. deer are notorious for wreecking
cars and killing people and for good reason. they are huge
and slow and their first impulse is to freeze as you are
hurtling at them at 45mph. then they travel in clusters and
when they finally break more run into the road to keep up.
they are awful and hell yes, i am slamming on the brakes,
and remembering where i saw it so i can watch for them next


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 01:10 [#02502132]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

well, birds. i meant: turkeys, geese: stop, immediately.
little birds like chickadees are so fast you pose no threat
to them and you should ignore them too. let them handle
themselves, pretty much. tune it out as noise depending on
the species; hardcore interrupt for others.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 01:11 [#02502133]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

simon travaglia, the BOFH guy, spoke of the "non-maskable
male interrupt," namely a kick to the family jewels. wakes
anyone right up from any train of thought, yep. lots of
these ideas are little jokes i've had with me for ten or
fifteen years. dinner is an interrupt to me executing coding
this thing. bathroom: definitely an interrupt vector


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 01:21 [#02502135]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

driving combines the intellectual rush of speed chess and
the physical rush of juggling chainsaws. having both fire at
once seems to help things sync up a bit better. the sheer
feeling of movement, too, is really something. something
else entirely


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 01:25 [#02502137]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

a lot of what makes up a good driver is knowing what could
be a problem and reacting in advance just in case it does.

seeing a bike up ahead and a line of cars in front of you,
then slowing down because you know the bike is about to slow
all the other cars down.

seeing a dag being loaded into a sport utility vehicle,
slowing down, and watching it to see if it's going to become
a problem to the level that you have to stop completely.

but rhythm is also a required ingredient. the little waltz
of timing that lets another driver tell the difference
between "slow grandma" and "i'm waiting for you to turn."
you wait, they wait. if they don't go fast, are they letting
you go? then you both go at the same time, whoops! both
brake simultaneously. like when, on a sidewalk, you move out
of someone's way exactly when they do, like it's a mirror.
then you both do it again

i was the sort of person who did the sidewalk thing all the
time, but now i realize i can't remember the last time that
happened. but i could probably get it to happen deliberately


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 01:38 [#02502138]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

most of the stuff i'm writing about automatic driving is
stuff everyone does. frankly, it's a marvel to me that so
many people drive cars every day and the whole thing works
as well as it does. it's absolutely amazing. when i point
this out, though, no one really gets it.

pretty much, once i cracked open the lid and found this
fascinating architecture of well-trained weasels i'd
unconsciously corralled somehow i was like a kid in a candy
store. excitedly discovering things like the architecture of
mammal danger as mapped to an abort vector, or that dogs get
loose sometimes and i have a subconscious weasel that
watches for dogs that could theoretically get loose.

so, yes, everyone has this stuff. and i'm talking about it
like it's amazing because it is.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 01:43 [#02502139]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i like hiking for the same reasons i like driving: movement,
and the rush of navigating turf. jumping over branches and
rocks, in rhythm to whatever. something in studying
breathing has bled back over.

i was sort of, i dunno, floating down a hill. i've always
done that a bit on that hill; it's so steep you can't simply
walk it. so i've experimented with altering my stance and
stride and i'm having fun fucking around with dancing down
the hill, around the rocks, and i feel remarkably synced up
and calm for a fleeting moment.

a lot it makes sense to me: i suppose i am genetically built
to cover ten miles on foot, memorize the nuances of the
turf, and compulsively optimize what i do on that journey
because survival depends on it.

driving fast, outhinking the other drivers, moving quicker,
more precisely... as wilson said to house: do you steal
lunch to annoy me, or is it just the thrill of beating the
other hunters to the food? it is a primal urge that, through
compulsive compartmentalization, i have channeled into this
strange recursive engine of self-discovery.

most things in my mind are not that well-tuned, yet


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 01:51 [#02502141]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

some man was branching off from somewhere as i finished
floating down the hill. it drops off into a dried-up brook
steeply and i allowed my tempo to do about what i'm aiming
for when i take the dial on an mpc1000 and sweep it up from
145 to 300 in an arc like the doppler shift of a car
whooshing past you; jump over the end. invert the previous
pattern and slow to a halt. man branching! feel slightly
awkward. then: no, fuck it, that was solid.

he was asking me where the parking lot was. he was not the
first person to do it. the first man i asked: which parking
lot? oh, that one, it's that way. then i rattled of visual
image markers i used for his reference.

the second guy was right near the lot the first man wanted,
so i said yes, it's over there. it's where i was going. then
he gets there and says to me: oh, er, i wanted the other
lot. whoops!

i told him: here is the route i know, here are visual
markers for reference. then i told him the trick was to make
markers for yourself in your mind as you go, and he said he
knew. i started to talk about drifting off into thought,
caught myself, and recommend he ask someone else -- the
other people walking up -- because there might be a better

their reaction was: "you mean, on foot?" poor dude. it was a
bit of a walk

anyways, the loci -- "path" -- method of memorization. a
route you know well, points in a bullet list glued to each

remembering and actual path that way takes conscious focus.
as you make each marker, run through every marker in order,
once or twice, even backwards. otherwise you begin to lose
them. if your mind wanders, they all begin to drift off, and
you don't even make markers at all. weasles are fickle


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 02:15 [#02502142]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i was sitting in my car, eating crisps, but i'm afraid i
wasn't listening to augmatic disport. i had on "black
plastic" by ladytron, off their second album, light &

this album is amazing and also intricately woven into the
fabric of my life to the point where i think rather
seriously about whether or not i feel like listening to it.
emotional connections get dense and begin to resemble
magick; david copperfielding myself. but i've realized it.
being compulsive about when to put it on probably only
accelerates the spiral...

anyways, black plastic. touchy chair. with some time. to.
spare. which, indeed, i had, because it was the ass-end of
rush-hour, and i wanted to eat my chips and drink my
starbucks milk bottle and this lot is perfectly designed for
people watching. there is an extremely odd nook with exactly
three parking spaces that essentially turns the nearby
intersection into a drive-in movie theatre. and the
intersection is reliably crazy from 6am to midnight...

i was not parked there. i was in a large void of spaces off
to the side, also a good spot for another purpose: looking
at the people driving the cars, and seeing how my conception
of them matched the cars. the most notable thing, really,
was how long i had to wait to find a puzzler. most were

17 year-old kid in a nissan altima. either that's dad's car
or his parents are rich, but don't want to spoil him and
have gone with precisely the upper-edge of what a 17-year
old kid can/should have. like, sorry son, you're not getting
a BMW M3, you're getting a nissian altima. which is still
way quicker than my car.

i couldn't tell which he was, but i could have figured it
out if i drove behind him for a bit.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 02:22 [#02502143]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

i was rounding up my crisps, searching through the shake for
stragglers, when pick-up truck dad and junior pull in next
to me. i barely noticed, but in retrospect, why'd he park
there? spots right next to the store dead empty. so many
better spots.

it's like the urinal thing: most men instinctively go for
the urinal furthest open urinal from everyone else there.
some men will do precisely the opposite, and ignore
seventeen urinals in the rest stop men's room and pee right
the fuck next to you. these people are either macho assholes
and want you to be sure of it, or gay. perhaps both; not
really where i like to pick up dates and i wouldn't know

anyways, this guy had a kid and that was totally a macho
parking move. i didn't think about this until later, though.
at the time, i just finished my crisps and sparked a
cigarette. it felt like a good moment; do it before i'm
driving. then the man returned.

i was watching the cars and not him; i was paying him no
mind. don't want to meddle. the people i'm watching don't
notice me and aren't bothered, but i don't want to stare and
analyze some dad in a parking lot. so, yes, i make a choice
to just keep looking.

then i hear The Cough. it says: you are smoking a cigarette
and i am bothered by this. it's a subtle thing to hear, but
since i started smoking cigarettes, i've come to hear it
pretty clearly from a normal, real cough. it is a theatrical
thing and the timing/style is all different.

then i thought about where he'd parked and, well, fuck off.
i waited about as long as it took to make it seem like i'd
not noticed he gave me The Cough and took a large puff of my
cigarette. then i could feel him staring at me.

i waited the proper duration, and took another large puff.
he drove off in a huff. i'm not as deft at out-peeing the
macho sorts, but i'm getting better


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-20 02:25 [#02502144]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

how do you know when someone is staring at you? i really
can't tell how i knew, in that moment. i could have been
wrong; maybe it was just a likely thing and i nudged it over
into a sure thing. but, most people know the feeling that
they're being stared at naturally. it can be wrong but it
often isn't, and it's fascinating to me.


offline EpicMegatrax from Greatest Hits on 2016-08-21 00:49 [#02502157]
Points: 24822 Status: Addict

hiking today i got to thinking about how i write things up:
a tree growing around the end of a fence? why not with the fence
through the middle? that's simpler and i went with a more
cumbersome metaphor. why? it was what popped into my head as
i was writing it up, and i've learned to look at what pops
up and say either: A) sure, why not, or B) no, that's wrong
for reason XYZ; tinker with it and repeat.

the fence thing just came out and i saw no reason to stop
it. today, i realized i was getting at something: the fence
is the lizard brain and the tree is the higher-level mammal
brain wrapped around the end, like the physical structure of
the brain itself.

i do this to myself a heck of a lot. some are unwittingly
brilliant and i don't notice until a few days later. others
nag at me like dreams: a school bus? again, it's just
the visual metaphor that tumbled into my mind, and i
dutifully wrote it up. a lot of the time these things are
just adding color; a more interesting way to write
something. but i feel like i picked a school bus for a
reason and i can't quite figure it out. teaching? a bus in
the electrical engineering sense? or was it just color? i'm
still mulling on it


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