Came home after the hour and a half drive (and basically a 1.5 hour conversation with myself... ) to find what appeared to be the remains of a party at my place. "Mad Gab" and scrabble on the kitchen table, and a person asleep on my couch. Interesting...
So what to do at 3am and on a caffiene rush? Well, investigate PGP and mod_perl. Ohhh, and check out a cool little program I was told about today called xchat. It's a gnome aware GTK irc client. Looks really good with gtk themes!
"Every day for the rest of your lives, all of your living moments are to be spent making others aware of this need -- the need to probe and drill and examine and locate the words that take us to beyond ourselves.
"Scrape. Feel. Dig. Believe. Ask.
"Ask questions, no screech questions out loud -- while kneeling in front of the electric doors at safeway, demanding other citizens ask questions along with you -- while chewing up old textbooks and spitting out the words onto downtown sidewalks -- outside the Planet hollywood, outside the stock exchange, and outside the Gap.
"Grind questions into the glass on photocopiers. Scrape challenges onto old auto parts and throw them off of bridges so that future people digging in the mud will question the world too. Careve eyeballs into tire treads and onto show leathers so that your every trail speaks of thinking and questioning and awareness. Design molecules that crystallize into question marks. Make bar codes print out fables, not prices. You can't even through away a piece of litter unless it has a question stamped on it -- a demand for people to reach a finer place."
"What do we ask?" Wendy says.
"Ask whatever challenges dead and thoughtless beliefs. Ask: When did we become human beings and stop being whatever it was we were before this? Ask: What was the specific change that made us human? Ask: Why do people not particularly care about their ancestors more than three generations back? Ask: Why are we unable to think of any real future beyond, say, a hundred years from now? Ask: How can we begin to think of a future as something enormous before us that also includes us? Ask: Having become human, what is it that we are now doing or creating that will transform us into whatever it is that we are slated to next become?
Even if it means barking on street corners, that's what you have to do, each time baying louder than before. You must testify. There is no other choice.
"What is destiny? Is there a difference between personal destiny and collective destiny? 'I always knew I was going to become a movie star.' 'I always knew I was meant to murder.' Is Destiny artificial? Is it unique to Man? Where did Destiny come from?
... Your eyes will always feel as if you've been staring at the sun, your bodies seemingly aching to cool them by staring at the moon. There aren't enough words for 'transform.' You'll invent more."
"... You'll become clearer and clearer."
p272,273 Girlfriend in a Coma, Douglas Coupland
The disussions we had (which lasted some time) were centered around religion and dating. Two subjects that I have no qualifications to speak on, but since this is the net, I will anyway. And chances are that people'll believe me too.
I'll start out light, with my requirements for a female in a relationship (Brad, you can take this to yer wife if you want). From unserious to serious...
Now, this doesn't have anything to do with like, math scores, or having a degree or educational (not that these are bad things), but more being able to think for themselves. Someone I can talk to for hours at a time and make sense, who makes me think, and I can make her think.
I had a lot more, but I got distracted copying out the quotes above. Now onto the religion.
It's not Amish, but similar in a lot of ways. I'd love to get right into it, but the only thing I have time for right now is a quick rant on education. Seems that students are only required to go to grade 9, and are only expected to. Why you ask (as I asked)? Well, you don't need more that grade 9 to be a farmer or truck driver.
However, I've always felt that letting our children know what is out there for them is better than sheltering them from the outside world and the possibilities of things that they could do. What if Einstein was never told that there were possibilities out there. If Socraties was told to stop asking such silly questions, you will be a farmer like your father, and your father before him. In addition to this, the sheltering of the whole society is scary. Not in this particular case, but also of that of the Church of the Netherlands here in the Valley. From what I understand it's a very closed society. You work for people within the community, and seldom go outside of it.
I ask this: what happens when some child does decide that they wish to explore the world outside, or wish to pursue some interesting things that they might have stumbled across that the education for is simply not available in the community?
If someone has been raised in the community all their lives, been sheltered from anything that the community or religion feels is "bad" (my dealings with this society is that we provide the internet connectivity to a school and we have the banning/blocking software they use). What happens when they decide that astro-physics rocks their world, and that they are going to pursue further education at UBC. How would happen? Several senarios come to mind. Maybe they are completely discuraged from it, and remain in the community. Maybe they do go.. but think about the implications of a totally sheltered person going to a place like a university. Sheltered like these people appear to be seems to be (based on their net connection style) that they are not exposed to "bad" things. Nothing un-clean passes into their network, so they are not given the opportunity to see if the net is evil or not.
If someone comes to me and tells me that the Internet is evil, that's fine, as long as they can tell me why. "Because my teacher/father/mother told me" is not an acceptable answer. Children are smart, smarter than we think I think, and should be allowed to choose for themselves. Obviously this is not something to apply globally, or without supervision, but it is something I believe. I was given choices in my life, and my parents never tried (as I remember) to prevent me from finding out things for myself. If I asked what the hollocost was, they would explain to their knowledge at a level that I at whatever age could understand, and then maybe a book was pulled out, or a trip to the library ensued. I was not sheltered. I feel sorry for people who are.
Now I'm off to bed, as I have a party to get togeather (and a battery for the underground parking to get).
Awk, yea. To my credit, I was out the door 6 minutes or so after waking up. Even got to work early!
This morning was a different story. I went to bed at 11-11:30 or so, and was rudely woken up at 1:15 by my backup alarm clock. My radio-alarm said it was 1:15, but I had to make sure (nothing like stumbling around the house at 1am looking for a clock you can trust). When I verified it was indeed 1am, I reset the backup alarm to the right time and went back to sleep. Then I woke up late again (not too late this time though) because the backup alarm failed. When I looked at the time it was 1:40am or something. Might be time for a new set of batteries methinks.
I'm thinking of inventing a new drink called the horny englishman. Whaddya think?
Ahh.... Christmas... I'm not sure what sort of mood I'm in. At lunch at work I grab a bite to eat and go and park by Chilliwack river and read a book while looking out to the mountains. The snow is creeping down the tops and getting closer every day. The bland, black and white look of the mountains reminds me of carefree days traipsing through the woods near the home of my youth, prepared for any dangers that might be facing me, be it animal or white man. Ah, nostalgia.
Lately I've gotten a travelling bug. Reading Shampoo Planet by Douglas Coupland (and the protaganist's travels to Paris) combined with my good friend Llau heading to England and all has got me in the mood to head out on the road. Maybe this spring I'll do just that. Head to London for a week and see the city.
Christmas is an ok time I guess. Over commercialized, overcroweded. No wonder people leave their shopping to the last minute, they want to have the pain and agony of shopping in a crowded mall over in only one go, instead of prolonging it over many days. And even better, leave it until the last minute, so there is no chance of going back even if you want to!
Ok, so it might be a flawed theory based on the procrastinating person I am, but it's my theory nonetheless.
The last few days have been very busy, but also very rewarding. We had some training on a demo system that I have been working on for work. Well, it's "demoness" came out in full colors. The stuff I was working on worked, however the areas that were shaky were the ones that were shown off. Anyway, needless to say it sucked big time, and I was told simply "go home and fix this," which I did. For 3 days.
So since Tuesday I've been coding perl like mad, and making things work, fixing bugs/issues etc. Kinda cool except I've had 0 time for anything else. Hell, even phoning friends or doing stuff like that hasn't been done. But on the other hand, a lot of our system that I was not 100% confident in has now been re-written and tested hugely, which is good. Just a couple other things to play with on sunday, and I'll be very happy (I just hope that the boss is too!).
Hmm.... Darren says that he won't be talking about his new GF, K on his page. However, have no fear faithful reader, I will be sending anything I feel is needed information over to you!
Argh.... non-work-work. Been working on my userfriendly fan site ufies.userfriendly.org a lot lately. Updating, fixing little bugs, doing little additions with the perl and stuff. I'm really quite proud of it, though I will be re-doing a bunch of the stuff on it, like the graphics and the lack of content (though the lack of content won't be so much a "re-do" as a "do."
Bleah, babbling... back to fixing my system.
Now that that's out of the way, a few things will be changed/added, but that's all part of the growing process. Now I can work on my other sites.
...oh well, back to code.
First. The ufies site is back! ufies.userfriendly.org works again! Course, due to some magic and some advice from an unnamed source, my old sites of ufies.ml.org and arcterex.ml.org work again too. Not that I can get to them right now of course :(
Hmm... some helpful advice I was given, and shall always remember:
... a word for a wize....