Rook's Rambling Reflections
So, gentle noders, I have this day (well, yesterday, I guess) advanced to Level 5.

And there was great rejoicing. Yay.

Not bad, I think, after a tenure of six months. Hell, I know there are plenty of you guys out there who have blown right past me, but putting together 250 writeups of reasonable quality and with moderately defensible factual content in less than a year seems like pretty good work to me. For those of you interested, my ascendant node was one for the Sesame Street song AB-C-DEF-GHI. And for those of you interested in punishing me for such blatant nodevertising, it's spelled R-O-O-K.

(Actually, I feel a little left out, since I have yet to acquire an XP stalker. Everyone who's anyone seems to have one these days. Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.)


^
I
To the individual who gave me 20 downvotes: Thanks for making me feel like one of the gang. Hope you had a good time. PS: I was just KIDDING.


And it sure has been an interesting six months. I've had a pretty good time here, writing and ranting and drinking wine. It has proved, in many ways, to be much more challenging than I had anticipated. I've been writing for years (both as a career and as a means to vent), and the idea that I could get feedback from a broad group of individuals (as opposed to the 2-3 people that regularly visited my website) was intriguing. And, hey, I've done OK. At least I haven't been, to date, shown the door.

But I've been entirely unable to get a grip on what the nodegel wants deposited in it. Things I write that I think are good head down into the -2 rep range, while pieces I've just thrown together off the cuff find their way up to the 20s. And when I try to engineer a writeup in such a way as to get a large number of votes, this is invariably the result:

Begin possibly delicate segment:

Topic

(thing) by Rook

Rep: 3

Some facts on a topic, arranged as best as I could contrive given my available time, flavored with a bit of personal reflection.


(thing) by SomeOtherNoder

Rep: 45 C!

Pretty much the same thing, but incorporating the word "lesbian."

End possibly delicate segment

But don't get me wrong--I'm not complaining. I think that, when you get this many people together, people with different ideas and different perspectives, you get a beast that is hard to quantify. As individuals, we run the gamut from perverts to prudes, but E2 is both somewhere and nowhere between. It's an interesting sociological experience, if nothing else.

He said, "I don't know man, she's kinda funny, you know?"
I said, "I know. Ev'rybody funny. Now you funny, too."

And so far, for me, it's been more or less just that--ranting and wondering about how those rants are received. Oh, I like to think I've made some contribution to the E2 universe, but the thing is, I haven't really had the time to make the move from E2 contributor to respected E2 citizen (I do have a toddler running about, mind you). It bothers me. I hate being an anonymous noder. Well, screw that. Time to pay the membership fee and get in the door.

Yes, I would like to buy a fish license, please.

As a Catholic, I know that penance is the best way to clean the slate. I therefore offer the following:

O, E2, I am heartily sorry for having neglected you, and I detest all my skulking because of EDB's just punishments. But most of all, because it offends you, dear users, who are (in the main) good and deserving of more of my attention. I firmly resolve, with the help of your grace, to hide no more and avoid the near occasions of hiding.

(Well, if my casual flirtation with Gnosticism doesn't do the trick, that should probably push me over the edge into excommunication. Hope there are no priests or bishops out there....)

I also pledge myself to the following resolutions:

  1. To be a better pipelinker, no matter the cost.
  2. To say at least one witty thing per day in the catbox, even though my computer (gotta love this 'ol 486...no, wait, you don't) hacks and wheezes if I say too much.
  3. To absolutely, positively stay away from GTKY nodes, and instead strive to maintain focus while noding.
  4. To help, whenever possible, new noders, even the ones who are so damn prolific they'll end up lording over me from the top of the user list. I should always offer constructive criticism before casting that downvote.
  5. To work hard and earn my bullshit, to the intermediate-term end of placing a picture on my homenode (and that will be the thing, I prophesy, that will ultimately get me shunned).

Circles, leading me back to you...

Well, I guess this is supposed to be a daylog, so maybe I'd better begin my new noder's life by focusing on that. Well, let me see...woke up, re-diapered my daughter, watched some cartoons, ate some food, changed some more diapers...well, you get the picture. I promise that any future daylogs will stick far more closely to the advertised theme.

From the darkness and shadow, I creep slowly into my chair. The seat is warm, as my family has been on the computer all night. Like a broken record, the day seemed like any other day, except the thoughts in my mind. Whether dementia has gripped me, I don't know nor do I care enough to do anything about it. Maybe hopelessness has gripped my soul, yet I live each day like it would be the last. Great ideology, but very tiresome.

With no priorities to be deal with, I slept late and woke up late. I guess it was the phone call last night that kept me awake. Old friends, keeping in touch, telling me about the dilemmas they are experiencing. Normally, I would feel some sort of sympathy but my mind is too tired to notice the pain. Besides, compared to yesterday, today seemed like nothing at all (if you are wondering about what I'm talking about, please see April 9, 2001 for details). I tried to sleep when I thought I should, but insomnia or mania gripped my mind. Like an open book in the wind, I flipped back and forth, between sleep and consciousness. I dreamed many dreams, yet none pleasant. The darkness again taunts me with its vicious nature but what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

I wake up, only to pick up the phone. It is the source of my dreams and nightmares. She asks to come visit yet I tell her not to. Its hard to do something like that, especially when you want her to be here. I just can't be courteous to some people right now. Moral dilemma I suppose. After the phone call, I go back to sleep, only to stay awake for a few hours, replaying the phone call back in my mind. Free pay-per-view I guess. Just not as entertaining but free at least. I couldn't keep myself from repeating every word, trying to remember the gentleness of her voice as it reverberated in my eardrum. How I absorbed every word as if the world depended on it. On some level, I guess it did. I did live in a small world after all, too bad I'm the only occupant.

I wake up once again, but this time I stay awake. I sit on my couch, with my remote control in my hand. Then the day seemed to pass quickly, even after making dinner. Off to the gym.

With my earphones and slow music in my ear, I do my workout. I decided to blast the arms. In actuality, MrFurious is right. It seems like a medium for frustration. It worked wonders but I still pondered the day's events and yesterday's glory. I tried to live off the borrowed pleasantries of the past, but failed miserably. Off to the arcades I guess.

After DDR and an airplane game, off for my slurpee. As we head over to the nearest 7-11, I still was on a downhill slide but that was okay with me. I would be home soon.

Home. No one awake, but myself. After a game of Starcraft, I was left alone again. To think. To feel. To wonder about what is to be and what was. The dark grabbed me like a claw. I couldn't escape its cold grasp, but at the same time, I didn't want to leave. It was a familiar companion, for nights past and for nights to come. Off the phone, I sat here, with my garlic flavored peanuts, and my melting slurpee on my desk. My left arm sore, almost in as much pain as my eyes, as I have been deprived of sleep for the past week. Maybe tomorrow will be a better day. Maybe I should just stop hoping.

Do not worry for me. I no longer worry about myself. I have no patience yet have all the time in the world. To drift slowly, a leaf in a hurricane, to be tossed around by forces beyond my control. I sniffle slightly, as the sound of my nose echoes through the hallway. How peaceful it sounds.

I blink slowly, to moisturize my dry eyes. I place my hands on my stomach, and feel as I breathe in and breathe out. I feel myself succumbing to fatigue and exhaustion but I know that I will not sleep. It will be a night like any other, and for once I will try to stay awake. Maybe then will I be allowed to sleep.

Do not search for me in the darkness, as you will not find me. I no longer have the ability for hope. I know that you do. If you care as you say you do, have hope. Reach out from your warm surroundings and reach your arms out to the cold darkness. I will know its you, and I will reach my hand out to you. Do not be afraid. Do not flinch. I will not hurt you. Not as much as you have hurt me.

I once told a friend, "Age is not an accurate indication of maturity. It does not hold true that a person gets more mature as they get older; it's only a probability. Rather, maturity is attained in a process of degrees, each degree being measured in experience. Experience is earned through a lack of wisdom; wisdom comes from experience. Wisdom and maturity are not the same thing, though they are interdependent upon one another should a person want to embrace contentment, peace and true spiritual maturity." This is my personal philosophy and I'm sure it's not unique, but I have the distinction of having figured it out on my own and so far I have yet to see error with it.

epiphany: e·piph·a·ny (-pf-n) n., pl. e·piph·a·nies.
A comprehension or perception of reality by means of a sudden intuitive realization.

I was sitting at a coffee shop tonight, drinking coffee, smoking cigarettes and reading a book. The coffee was one of my favorites, Hawaiian Hazelnut. My Marlboro Lights, in a box, were dwindling fast in the cool night breeze, weather that hadn't been seen in Nashville for quite some time and was very welcome to anyone with half a brain. I was reading "The Diamond Age" by Neal Stephenson, which is part sci-fi, part children's fairy tale, part speculative fiction, part future-history... definitely a book that was right up my alley. Friends floated about my table, coming and going as friends do, but they were respectful enough (this time) to leave me be and let me read, the earphones of my MP3 player blatantly exposed on my shaved head, making it clear that I was in another world entirely and happy to stay there until exhaustion struck or I ran out of smokes. It was almost bliss, for me, diminished only in the fact that there was a certain table companion whom I wish could have joined me. It's just as well, though. As into Mr. Stephenson's novel as I was, I might not have been very engaging company tonight- I ate that story up like it was candy.

At some point I glanced around me. The café was emptying of people and it was getting late. The establishment wasn't going to close, because it's open 24/7, but my eyelids suddenly became very, very heavy, as though some invisible force were purposely tugging them downward, inducing REM state. In those precious few moments when the world was quiet, conversations were at a low ebb and my mind was unfettered and massaged well-enough, the loose fabric of my consciousness began to coalesce into something new and different. One of those degrees of maturity, an experience, was in the process of being processed- wisdom was settling in and taking a firm hold on my psyche. It's no surprise, really, because I am, after all, only 27 years old. People continue to grow and mature even through their eighties and if they don't, then something's wrong.

During those immeasurable seconds of my mind's busy-work, a calm came over me. In a sense, it felt like I was stepping on my own grave and not too interested enough to really care or notice except in some dispassionate way, like, "Oh, man, should I even be doing this right now?" Having a moment of clarity should be an intensely private thing, like masturbation or winning the lottery, not something one does at the slightest opportunity, in front of everyone. I mean, let's be honest here, it's not like you can really share a moment of clarity with someone else, is it?

But that's what it was: clarity, like looking at a world that has become a crystal, blue lake of serenity and perception. I'm not entirely certain of what it was my mind was realizing, perhaps it was just the coffee, but whatever it was felt big, like destiny kinda stuff. I hope to drift to sleep soon and let my mind ruminate some more on this wonderfully mysterious epiphany so that I may ponder it tomorrow or, just maybe, share it with someone I love.

[ Dream Log ]

13:42

Last night... I spent a couple of hours downloading the 1.1.0.6 patch for Half-Life, and noticed one thing: The &#%@#* Counter-Strike patches for old versions ARE available out there, just that I had not been able to find them.

So, now I could patch my Beta7 to 1.1 by downloading, uh, 44 megabytes of stuff. NOW do you see why I don't play CS? I hope the future patches aren't as... cheerfully huge. =(

I sincerely hope the promised Pelit CD-ROM that comes this month has full Counter-Strike 1.1... or I have a painful download ahead.

::sigh:: Oh, I, too, wish that factual noding could get me anywhere. =(

Time to face the challenges of the day...

17:21

So Pelit came with CS 1.1. Now, whenever I connect to CS server, this happens:

  1. The game connects to the server.
  2. Server welcomes the game.
  3. Game starts loading the mod to the memory. This takes a while.
  4. ...a while.
  5. ...well, call it a couple of minutes.
  6. The server, thinking I have missed something, disconnects.
  7. The game finally finishes loading, and wonders where the heck the server went.

See? Another reason why I don't play CS.


Other day logs o' mine...

Noded today by y.t.: Dream Log: April 10, 2001 M-x doctor

Updated:

ia dahlia,
  on the dias;

ua starling,
  ia dahlia.

its a pleasure,
  your craft; a rising, 
    rising above all 
    surrounding 


spring is here and I am happy. winter is to long. Sunday I got my first good long dose of sun. thank god you cant get cancer in spring. I have given my job notice. I have bought a nice bike and I am preparing for my trip across the maritimes. I am very happy these days. Very excited.
This weekend was ever so confusing. Well OK, last weekend was the source of most of the confusion, and I will daylog that whole experience sometime when I figure out exactly how to put it all down in words. The short version is that I went over to a friend's house and she introduced me to the joys of MDMA (It's bloody wonderful, I might add). I ended up sleeping with one of her friends that night. A dumb thing to do, I know, but it's a little late for second-guessing that now. Anyway, Sunday I went out to the park with her, hoping to find out what she thought of the whole situation, and we ended up back at her house. One thing lead to another (again), and I ended up in bed with a girl I hardly know (again). I don't want to get too attached to her, because I know she's moving out of the state in a few months, but at the same time, I want to see her even if only for the sex. Ugh, I feel like such a slut...
oh well

I put together an Everything2 theme for WindowMaker yesterday. It should be up on themes.org in a few days. Any WindowMaker users who can't get enough of the beautiful e2 jukka theme should check this baby out! I've been toying with the idea of doing a matching xmms/winamp skin, but I doubt it'll happen. Projects like this never get finished, they just rot in my mental inbox, like the E2 search sidebar for mozilla. I'll get back to that one someday (why must I always think of that when I'm using a mozilla nightly with a b0rken sidebar?

The Night Before The Morning After

Back from the hospital now, after the pre Caesarian section visit. Nothing much happened - they took some blood to make sure they have some of my type to spare (just in case), we met the anaesthetist and had a chat about spinal anaesthetic, and they listened to its heartbeat on the Doppler microphone. As usual, the baby's heartbeat came through loud and clear.

It was reassuring to see the ward, however briefly, and to be able to picture where I'll be for most of the next week. I've had a few nightmares about the hospital stay (just anxiety dreams), and seeing the place makes me feel better.

After the hospital, we strolled around the Meadows for a bit, then went to our favourite Indian restaurant, Kalpna, for a last dinner out. Now we're at home, with the phone switched off (both mothers have already rung), watching the DVD of Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?. I'm half nervous, half in desperate denial that my life changes tomorrow. Forever.

So tomorrow we turn up at Simpson Maternity Pavillion in the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh at 8 AM. We're second in the queue, so we will probably be in theatre by 10:30ish. Families are probably getting calls at noon, in a brief mobile phone break by the no doubt proud and overwhelmed father.

I have no idea how either of us will sleep tonight.


What is evilrooster on about? See previous episodes of this drama in earlier daylogs:

March 31,2001
April 4,2001

Sun on the Daisies

The pale blooms rise,
Sprout from the meadow;
Sails of tall ships,
Casting their shadow.
This spring morning,
Beneath warm sunshine,
Its soft breezes
Caress like white wine.

And her face,
Clinging to winter's paleness,
Yet awash in summer's naescent glory.
Lines and curves
Whispering of newly-minted dreams.
No obstacles; just lost in the story.

In dancing flight,
Spring birds paint the sky.
Amid tall grass;
Waltzing butterflies.
The clouds stopped,
Forgotten, lazy.
The day simply
Sun on the daisies.

00:55
(on April 11, 2001)

Moving day!

The firm finally got to move to the new offices. I tell you, an another week in the hell hole I was previously stationed, and you'd be having the first AK47-to-IT-workplace incident in Finland. :)
It's amazing what kind of difference moving to the other end of the building could make. Instead of the small, dark, windowless space with people passing through all the time inhaling the little precious oxygen we had, we now have a real office with air conditioning and probably one of the nicest views you can get in a HML downtown office building. And instead of the old sardines in a can -style, all the employees actually have a decent amount of space for themselves. I won't say the new facilities are the best this town has to offer, but I definitely won't complain either.
What I would like to complain about is the fact that I have to get up at 7:30 Thursday morning, in order to attend a not-very-interesting meeting held in the middle of nowhere. Oh well, at least the long Easter weekend starts soon after.

The other thing that has got me in such a fine mood today (again) is a good friend spending the evening with me. Although I am denied any sort of romantic relations by society's and its standards, it is sure nice to have friends to spend time with inside and outside the net. I guess I'm not the right person to bitterly complain about being lonely after all.

Fair warning: This is going to get self-righteous, and there are politics involved.

I was up late the other night listening to some friends talk about politics, and it finally hit me what the term armchair means when applied to politics, as in armchair liberal, armchair activist, etc.

My friends are perfect representations of why everyone gets pissed at members of the white middle class who think they're political. They've never been involved in any political campaigns, done any kind of activism or organizing, and at least one of them has apparently never talked to anyone outside his socioeconomic background where race, class, or gender differences became an issue. In short, they've lead politically sheltered lives, voting every year as their main political action.

In the course of the discussion, one of them demonstrated political naivete the likes of which I haven't seen since high school. The other has a philosophy that is better thought out, but that I as an activist have some issues with that transcend the objections my own political philosophy raises.

The point of this that politics is better learned through activism, whether it's in the streets or as part of a campaign, and that while I respect anyone with a knowledge of history, political science, or sociology, all this armchair discussion without action either to back it up or to base it on is just so much wind over open prairie.

I had so much on my mind already, and now even more so after therapy on Monday, my head is spinning. My therapist, when I blurted out my new-found bisexuality to her, just reassured me that it was not a big deal, not to worry about it. Whether she thought this was a passing phase or not a big deal for any woman, I don't know - we had run out of time. And I don't really care. It explains so many things in my life that I have just made up excuses for. Now I don't need an excuse, because the truth will suffice.

I don't like the way it feels inside my head anymore. Some typical emotions that are there whenever I'm not distracted are: sadness, despair, loneliness beyond any loneliness I've ever felt before (after all, there's no one left but me, now, is there? Is there?), futility, and a feeling of being trapped in a pointless, meaningless life.

Do I want a girlfriend? No, I don't think so. Do I want to sleep with a girl? Yes, I definitely do. In fact, I found out about a couple of bars in my home town that I am going to check out this weekend. Well, at least one bar. Or maybe I'll go tonight after belly dancing class. I'll probably be too timid to do anything but sit there and have a drink. But I'm going to go anyway.

Written in 1:30 PM Distributed Systems. Original formatting preserved, save conversion from uppercase to lowercase and side-by-side flipped columns. Aligned with bottom-left corner, text block basically fills most of the bottom 3/4 of the page. I took only a few actual notes on today's notepage, about Treadmarks and Basic Modes of Communication.

<< | <- | ->

{snip}
      wow, if i actually
get into noding-as-study
it could be really good for
my gpa and my level maybe
not my xp if people start
getting sick of me like that
ayb node i was so proud of
but was almost instantly
killed the bastards could
at least node a warning
into ayb that any new
nodes in ayb will be killed
sight-unseen, or at least
with extreem predjudice.
especially since i still lost
the xp. its funny how im
sucking my friends into
e2 so far edibleplastic
and azure lunatic are
victims of my evangelism
course with the vicious
anal raping we've all
been getting from lag
(is it still hot in here,
donfreenut?) i dont
know if they'll stray
from the fold... and
id have corrected that
vas deferens comment —
lag couldnt enter
through the vas deferens
without burrowing thru
skin — or just using
the urethra in the first place which is
more gender-
{rotate page 180°}
neutral anyway.
{snip}
{rotate page 180°}
{snip}
again ... i dont
think ive ever
had a prof more
sleep deprived
than myself. he
just sat down in one
of the class member
chairs the ones for
students with the
desks they must
have a name oh
well another kind
of pointless class
attendance he sat
down again i really
dont think thats
normal behavior for
him {snip}
latex shiny smooth
tight and sexy slutty
is that an inherently
bad thing? some girls
enjoy that sort of thing

from time to time and i
know guys do when
they do fetishes are
such an interesting
topic and we humans
especially males are so
{rotate page 180°}
easy to program just
association is enough.
this train of thought
has very little to do
with distributed systems.
{snip}
mind wants to get out tense
frustration why it must
be the handwriting mind
not connected properly
molasses between mind
parts neurons train of
thoughts not lasting
long enough to complete
sentences and dammit
i took my medication
there was a time when it
worked properly ... do
i mean the medication
or my mind? does it
matter anyway its all
fscked up and going
to hell in a handcart
like
in indiana jones and the
temple of doom
. christ ive
filled my note page with
crap!

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