Category: Life

I love the idea of blogging. I love having a platform to stand on. It’s my place, my words, my ideas, my philosophies; It’s my ball, that I can take home when I will.

In the wise yet untested words of The Doctor,

“Am I an old misery? Life and soul? Right-handed? Left-handed? A gambler? A fighter? A coward? A traitor, a liar, a nervous wreck? I mean, judging by the evidence, I’ve certainly got a gob.”

So why do I post with such forthright interest and intent and then walk away for weeks or months at a time? Honestly, as I type this introduction I don’t have an answer. I do have some theories and speculations percolating; however, these could merely be excuses rather than a deeper understanding.

So, for anyone who bothers reading this (assuming I let anyone other than myself read it) you will be asked to accept a few things that happen on occasion in my posts.

1) This is written in the voice I speak in; not the voice that is used for written posts.

What this means is that I am going to write what I think, not for format. There will be sentence fragments, poor use of written punctuation fitting a written post, and occasional things left dangling more than occasional participles.

2) I will make effort to ignore the first item from time-to-time and write as if I cared about how it looks on the page.

What this means is that I will embellish, rewrite, run things through grammar and spell checkers, and do many things to try to reduce the lack of faith I and others have in my intelligence and measured solely by my writing quality.

Yes, I was one of those kids who cursed a B- that was graded down solely for the grammar and spelling especially when informed that it would have been an A+ paper for the content if the grammar hadn’t gotten in the way.

3) Unlike a lot of my writing there is no planned out organization in advance of my thoughts. I will write until I am content or bored. There is no outline for this post nor is there an expected narrative, nor (Crap linked negatives, stay with me here) intended direction. I’m just hoping for insight into my posting morass.

4) This trip is like driving cross country without a map, GPS, or asking directions.

What this means is that I’m going to let my ADHD out in its fullest so there will be digressions, side trips, and getting very lost.

Okay, rules are in place. They aren’t for you; they are for me. To reassure me that there aren’t any seat-belts and the car is full of gas.

I’m full of ideas.. I’m full of opinions… Why do I post with great intent and then walk away.

Digression the first… not the last… and probably not to be counted further.

Normally, I find myself most wanting to post when I am emotionally attached (Usually annoyed) enough to be wanting to talk on a topic. And there are plenty of topics I want to rip off about: (Politics, Social Justice, Organizational Dynamics, Media, The Patriarchy vs. Feminism, Stupidity, The Dumbing Down of our Culture, The Engineering of Our Cultures Apathy, Thelema, Fundamentalism, Fundamentalist Thelemics, oh the list goes on)

I also find that when vaguely depressed (which considering all these topics, can be fairly easy) that my desire to write about them gets mixed with sour feelings, apathy, and a general belief that nobody cares (including myself)

Tonight… I find myself neutral. I find myself desiring to write; but having nothing specific to write about. Which seems like a perfect time to turn the magnifying glass on the one thing that annoys me most but doesn’t have me depressed. My own writing.

As mentioned, I love to blog. I love to put the proverbial “It” out in the proverbial “there.” I have high admiration for many people out there who maintain constant media creation. My two highest regards are for “The Ferret” and for “Ken Ray.” Both of them create consistently powerful content. In the case of Ferret, he produces amazing writing. Every time I read his material I feel like running away and hiding. Even the most common things show me someone who lives life as fully as they can while still being a fully relatable human being. I am envious of his writing. Ken Ray has been podcasting as long as I believe people have been using the term podcast. He has a daily show that almost never misses and when it does miss a day he either warns people in advance or throws an announcement on. He may be the first person (not initially a commercial venture) to bring the concept of 5 9s (99.999% uptime) to a podcast.


There is a quotation from Aliester Crowley’s ‘Book of the Law’,

“For pure will, unassuaged of purpose, delivered from the lust of result, is every way perfect.”

For those of a Thelemic bend I will now wax in a manner described as a Centre of Pestilence. To those uninformed of such punishments, I choose to interpret what this means. I do so for me, not you. If you disagree so be it, if you agree, you have to agree for yourself, not because I interpret it that way. 93==YMMV.

This concept of Lust of Result was something that took me a long time to understand and to navigate around. To me, the statement suggests that you do not do things for the recognition of the ends but you focus on the doing. Of course this begs the question, “But what about the idea that the ends justify the means?”

Many people get into blogging for the recognition. Lately I watched and quickly thereafter weaned myself off of a program on the SYFY (which like others I pronounce Siffee) cable station about Cosplaying. The accolade more important than the effort, the love, the pursuit of perfection… the show really wedged me away from the representation shown.

My wish to blog is not based in a desire to be a blogger. I don’t want any recognition for having an awesome blog. I don’t want people to flock to my blog because they heard it’s great for A or B or C or worse… Because it’s the blog that everyone is following. (A slight delay while I ask a friend for a vocabulary word I couldn’t remember) God help me if I cultivate hipsters and please stop me before I become a religious or philosophical icon.

I should point out that neither Ferret nor Ken Ray I believe are bloggers for the sake of being bloggers, I think their content speaks for itself. (Not the first of my potential self contradictions)

I’m trying not to run out of steam already.

So, I want to post; but I don’t want to post because I’m supposed to post. Isn’t that just a recipe for having an excuse not to have an excuse.

In general, I know that I can easily frighten myself off of a post. Partially with audience reaction, or the lack thereof; which is interesting when I think I should be posting for myself.

Now I’m pushing myself to write because I know that if I stop; this post will not get finished at least to a degree of what I want.

I find as I begin to lose steam, I allow distractions to intervene into my writing. Opening up chat conversations, looking up things on the interwebs, or in general losing my place in the writing.

I like Journaling. I like writing my thoughts but I really feel judged; even by me on them.

Let me do a recap.

I want to blog; I admire bloggers who have in my eyes succeeded without compromising what they are doing. I want my words to be what is important not the action of blogging. I want my words to have impact without impacting… Well, hopefully impact because of the thoughts not because I wrote them. (Yeah, that Lust of result thing… it’s a bitch) I want myself not to be scared of what I’m writing; but I don’t want to force myself into a block.

Are we having fun yet?

I think I see a trend. I think I see some things… Not sure what yet. But I think I might come back sooner rather than later… But then again… I probably won’t.

Sha… So, Doctor… Did I make any progress this session?

To be honest, we are going to be moving soon; however, we seem to have had the holiday tree up and down in a very organised fashion this year. Well, organised discounting the decoration boxes around. We got the tree around the 15th or so and brought it and most of the lights down on the 2nd.

Outside the back of our house is Riverview Park. It’s also a fairly steep drop into the park. Since we remove all the decorations from a natural tree; we always cast the tree into the woods down the hill from our house. It’s a nice “Return to nature”/”Circle of Life” gesture.

So, we removed the decorations. I had my son put the dropped branches and needles into a bag. We carried the tree to the back of the house and I tossed it down the hill. Before I tossed it, we pointed out where last year’s tree was. We could see that parts of it were still there and parts had begun to wear down and return to the Earth.

Amusingly, when I threw this year’s tree it bounced and landed right on top of the previous year’s tree like a long forgotten lover. My son asked why we didn’t just throw it out. I told him that the tree came from the ground and by giving it back to the ground new trees would come. And tried to explain the “Circle of Life” concept.

He took the remaining branches out of the back and threw them down the hill into the woods. I told him he could yell, “Back to Earth” as he threw them. This made him very happy. I told him by giving to the Earth it would be our way of saying Winter will give way to Spring and the days will get longer and soon we will see all the trees green again.

He seemed to understand this and it made me very happy.

The concept of religion is a very complex (and personal) thing in our household; so it was nice to be able to give our son a grounding in a love and respect of nature while not miring him in too much dogma.

Happy holidays and happy new year to all. May this new year as always exceed the past and give way to even better tomorrows.

(Posted at 35,000 feet on an airplane! Whee!)

The movie “Fight Club” features a concept of the “Single Serving Friend.” On an airplane everything comes in Single Servings. Alcohol comes in little bottles; chips come in small bags; even the cutlery if you’re in first class is small.

Thanks to having a lot of miles of late (Two Cupertino trips Plus a first class trip to Seattle) I was able to upgrade my business trip back to Cupertino this week for miles alone. Traveling in First Class has its pluses and minuses. First class now a days means traveling with the 2nd .5%. And then the top 10% of the 99%. The top 10 of the 99% are cool. They know how much work and effort, it takes to get those upgrades. But the 2nd .5%… they are the scary ones.

These are the obviously wealthy, but not ludicrously wealthy. There is a gaudiness to the Swagger, Suit, Jewelry or attitude. Waiting on line to board I got to see one of these folk in action. In the city I often play a game I call “B or B” which stands for “Bluetooth or Bonkers.” Is the person talking to themselves or on a Bluetooth headset. The woman who wandered up to where we were queuing was not merely on a Bluetooth headset, but ranting at some poor invisible person like she was Bonkers. She was yelling to the person how even if she didn’t make her connection they would get her another plane. That there was no way she was missing this flight and there was no argument on this.

As she bickered with the luggage size limitation sign (as that’s where her eyes focused as she argued) she began inching closer to the front of the line. I was queued 3rd behind a very nice couple. I had my suit coat over one arm, I have a very nice red button down business shirt, and was waring my work back pack carrying my techno-stuff. When they called pre-boarding for small children and people needing assistance, she started to move forward and then seemed greatly put off that others were being boarded before her.

They then called first class and she moved in. “That’s alright we’re just queued here already,” I said in my standard Airport British Accent. When I don’t want to deal with people after they’ve been an ass in public, I put on a British accent. It really doesn’t accomplish anything; I think it’s merely a security blanket. Nonetheless, ignoring me and the nice couple she pushed in. Unfortunately, my backpack was there and she walked directly into it. She let out an unpleased oof, mixed with a sound that can only be described as the threat of an unwanted mastectomy. I of course as politely as possible turned about and said, “Oh dear, are you okay.” She was very angry. This was stunning as I actually hadn’t tried to get in her way, she just felt the need to be past me whether I was there or not.

As I looked down at her boarding pass I muttered, “Oh crap.” The nice couple said, “It wasn’t your fault. I wouldn’t worry about it.” I remarked, “No, I just saw her boarding pass, she’s sitting next to me for the next 4 hours..” “You’re the stronger person, I think you’ll survive.” (Mentally, I had an image of a Disco Ball crashing on the person’s head)

I got onto the plane and stood at my aisle seat. The woman looked at me and I said, “It looks like we’ll be sitting together then.” With a bit of venom she responded, “Well, obviously we’ve already gotten to know each other.”

Since then; not a word has passed between us. This is not surprising.

(You know, you really can’t write this stuff without living it.)

This post is not for my dearest Heather (who really needs to stop reading this now) as she’s lived through this more than enough for five lifetimes.

I am still gathering thoughts and impressions over this. I also still fully intend to write a book on our experiences. But one can say that after three and a half years this part of the journey is over.

I am home recovering today because going back into work on the East Coast Monday morning after 10 days on the west coast and travelling roughly 8 hours on the day before with a 4am wake up and landing at midnight (Pacific) (an hour late) may not have been the wisest idea.

During the case we asked for $1.4(M). This was based on several things not the least was permanent spinal damage that was going to cause a life of pain managed by monthly prescriptions of closely monitored narcotics, MRIs every 1-2 years to assure the damage wasn’t getting worse, the loss of our ability to have further children (Narcotics really aren’t good for children in utero), and the general upheaval to our lives. (The breakdown was $1M for Heather, $300K for myself, and $100K for Aiden)

The testimony of the “Independent” Medical Examiners, which is legal talk for Doctors hired by the defense to destroy the credibility of the injured party, were horrifying. Both made Heather out to be someone who was suffering from Scoliosis from before the accident and overselling her pain. They also went so far as to say that narcotics were bad for her.

The closing argument from the defense attorney was horrid. Any desire I ever had for legal work evaporated as he bent the misinformation into truth and bent the truth into unreliability. It was in a word sickening. This included such statements as, “I’m an only child and I’m happy.” I do not know how this man lives with himself. And I hate the argument, “You were just doing your job.”

The jury came back and awarded fair damages for medical work done in Washington (<20K which will likely all go to repay subrogation), but once we moved it was considered unnecessary. I’m not really sure how leaving a state cures someone. They believed no future medical costs were necessary. There was some pain and suffering as Washington mandates its award if economic damages are awarded. On Aiden and my behalf they awarded chump change for pain and suffering. Of whatever we see, 25% goes to the lawyer as payment.

Our lawyer informed us that two jury members utterly believed our story and were prepared to offer us what we asked for. One elderly woman however utterly felt that Heather was a narcotics addict and believed everything else. And the rest of the jury… compromised in the middle. Well conservative side of middle.

We’ve now seen what works and what horrendously doesn’t work in the Justice system. We know the games and powers that insurance companies use to batter away at the will and confidence of victims.

Make no mistake, Heather has received permanent spinal injury from the accident that she was a victim of. The type of injury can cause an array of neurological damage that she as been blissfully spared (so far). At the same time it also causes pain that is on par with delivering a child 24/7 and will live with that forever.

The insurance company and the defense lawyer where solidly aware of that. But did their jobs to undermine her as a victim. That is their jobs. Ours is to learn and to change the system so that the innocent aren’t damaged to the level we were.

Just a short note; the next two parts (Groups 3&2 and Group 1) are written, they just need to be edited and annotated. Sadly, today at work my energy from my precious two weeks gave out and I haven’t really had the energy to finish them. Hopefully, I will have them up tomorrow and then the follow up posting on Monday’s episode 6 later in the week.

I hope readers are enjoying them. I’d love feedback, agreements, disagreements, suggestions. You know the usual waste of time.