Tuesday, January 30, 2007

SNAFU-Situation Normal, All Fucked Up

Supposedly that's what snafu meant back when it originated in the army. Nice little abbreviation. That might just summarize how I'm feeling right now, not just fucked up, but so fucked up that it feels like that is the normal situation. That is of course an exaggeration, but when I'm feeling down the lines between exaggeration and reality become blurred. Right now is pretty horrible though.

I'm at a low point, probably at the start of a breakdown, though at this point I'm not sure whether it's major or minor. I'm not going outside much, in fact just once today, and that was simply to get food. Food is actually an interesting subject in my mind right now, for most of the day I had myself convinced not to eat, finally I got myself going to the dining hall, but I also then convinced myself to gorge on tons of unhealthy food. Overall though, even if that gorging is bad for my health in the long term, it is in the end better than not eating, especially when I'm in such a low point mood-wise. Not eating while depressed is tempting but a bad idea since it will deprive you of the energy needed to fight off the depressive impulses. And I really do need that energy now. I really need to snap out of this mood. I skipped 3 classes today, including two with homework, I'm not sure if I will attend class tommorow, I haven't showered, I haven't brushed my teeth, I skipped my club meetings, I am like I said several times before in bad shape.

But I hold to this truth, you cannot give up when faced with depression. I'm a man who believes in right and wrong, and giving up to depression is wrong, and I will not do that. Especially since giving up to depression can lead to suicide and perhaps even the slow decay of the soul. It's just not right. Perhaps it's just my Christian faith, perhaps it's just my love of humanity, but I am determined not to die because of my mental disease.

I'm not quite at that point yet, but I'm somewhat bordering it. Like I said, I'm near a breakdown, and I've had an increase in stray thoughts of self-harm and suicide, I haven't sunk into a spiral of self-hatred yet, but I'm worried about my condition and yet am consumed by feelings of helplessness and fear. Things are not good, but hey, they haven't been good before, and I've pulled myself out. I am after all the mighty and glorious Rand, so don't worry about me. I'm stronger than my disease, and this too will pass. So put on a happy face. Anyways that's about all for now. Take it your head, take it to your heart, and remember Rand rocks. Goodnight folks!

Saturday, January 27, 2007



Do you care when I suffer?

When I cannot piece together an honest thought?

Do your synapses flare

When I bleed?

Do my ruminations on self-hatred

Frightened you and widen your eyes?

Do you care?

I suppose it doesn't matter.

I should drop the matter.

But do you care when I suffer?

Do you want me to care?


Sunday, January 21, 2007

Must be the season of the witch.

I was going to save that title for a session about an odd episode of my life involving a witch, but I don't feel like writing about that and yet this song, or at least the chorus keeps on ringing in my head. Bad things have happened, but I can't really talk about that. Granted, my sessions might not be read much or at all, but in case certain people did and I revealed certain things certain embarrassments would come forth. So I hold back in this forum, but I wanted to start with that title because with that chorus in my head I can't commit to any other title.

Looking at the time I see technically now I have lost another day without a session which annoys me, but that's life. The time is rather late and I don't think I can really pull out a full session right now even, but maybe something just to set the tone of these times. Understand now, it's the season of the witch and the hour of the wolf. It's not a time of crisis, it's a time of a quiet desperation, as people ponder what they must do when the crises do break and all the problems finally break down upon their heads. Usually there's little they can do, occassionally there's everything they can do, and sometimes ignorance is the only course of action. The only thing people hold in common at this time, in the hour of the wolf in the season of the witch, is that quiet desperation, looking into the unknown as if it were a bottomless pit ready to swallow them up.

That chorus still rings in my head. Must be the season of the witch.

Friday, January 19, 2007

I get by with a little help from my friends

I suppose I do. Maybe. I tend to exaggerate my loneliness. Boo hoo, nobody invites me to their parties, etc. But I do have a good deal of loneliness. Just now something brought it up, so I'm not sure I'm in a good position to write about it objectively, but hey, the rants that compose these sessions were never promised as objective (well, some of them might be). But this does not bear a promise of objectivity (and any promise of objectivity that may come up is void in Tennesse (Simpson joke, watch the old episodes, watch them!!!)). Anyways, the event (and I want to be careful not to mention names or any personal details tht might hint at the identity of the people involved, because honestly, that seems kind of jerkish to me) was that I noticed that a friend of mine went on a trip without telling me. I thought we were decently close and so I would be told about it. But really, thinking upon it closer I realize we aren't that close, and that makes me sad. Maybe she did actually tell me and I didn't remember, which again would imply we weren't that close.

This is a lot to make of a little issue really, but the point is that it demonstrates something bigger. Not too big though, but bigger, maybe like medium big, like a 1/2 pound burger. Or maybe a little bit bigger than that, maybe it's in full pound burger range. It comes down to the fact that I have few strong social relations. I have a couple close friends with whom I have maintained contact with over the years, only two or three really, but even with them, it's more of IM chatting than weekly or even necessarily monthly meetings. That bothers me. I mean, I have a wider range of pretty good friends and aquaintences with whom I'm on good terms, but overall my social contact isn't that great. And I have no girlfriend and honestly, I haven't ever been on a real date, so on that front I have loneliness going on as well. It sucks to be lonely.

But what perhaps worries me more is the fact that it doesn't suck that much. In high school I had constant contact with my friens, even if it was only in the hallways and classes, but in college that isn't necessarily so (although I have a good roommate and at least have social contact with him). What I've been finding (and what I've found in the summers when I didn't have such contact), is that while I want to be social, and I want to have friends that I meet with regularly, I don't really need that. I can exist just doing work, reading, writing hopefully as well (although there have been long stretches with little of that), watching tv, etc. Without writing, going to the library, watching good movies and tv, etc. I might be disatisfied with my life, but if say I did all that and maybe submitted some stuff to publication, I'll be pretty happy, even if I am completely isolated, and that scares the hell out of me.

Because I want to around people, I love people abstractly, but I also love being around people, talking to people, helping people, etc. I'm not sure I've really conveyed that in this blog but now you know (though perhaps now you know too much, prepare to die, bwah, ha, ha, ha). But I don't need people, and honestly, I think just social contact isn't enough to satisfy my life alone, at least in the long term.

I am overemphasizing my isolation probably. I have my family, I have a few great friends, and many people I'm good with talking too. I'm asocial, but not anti-social. Still, asociality bothers me, but actually not that much. It makes me sad, and when depressed, it makes me very sad, but I can be ok with it. I am feeling empty, emotionless, motivationless now, and part of that is probably that my social contacts can't generate enough motivation to give me satisfaction in life. I suppose the social contact of a girlfriend or if I had a dependent might be enough but other than that, I'm going to need something else. I love people, but they aren't enough for me. Well, no that isn't true, my goals in life give me satisfaction because they help people, as well as for other reasons, but just social contact with people isn't enough. And that bothers me, but not that much. Well, it perhaps bothers me now more than other times, because looking at my life I can find little else of meaning than my few, but strong, social relationships.

But I guess that's just something I need to deal with. We all have our problems, and this is mine, not too huge, but not insignificant, that's life for you, well not for you, that's life for me. That's enough for this session.

So take it to your head, take it to your heart, and remember Rand rocks. Goodnight Folks!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Anatomy of Emptiness

Well readers, one and all, well actually more like one so far today, you are in for a treat. You get to witness my examinations of a severe emotional episode. All the horror, all the glory and you will have a front row seat. It should be fun (for you at least, not so much for me). It should be, but things aren't always as they should be. Heck, I should not be having this episode, but hey shit happens.

I think I might be misleading by calling this an emotional episode. I do have such episodes occassionally as I plunge myself or am plunged (depends on circumstances and perspective) into deep depression or dangerous esctasy. But this is not such an episode. It is an episode of mental bad health, but it is not emotional so much as anti-emotional. I feel empty, devoid of feeling and motivation, and that is not good.

My emotions have caused me a lot of trouble in my life. Love, fear, self-hatred, anger, etc. have led me to make bad decisions. But ultimately, I don't want to lose my emotions, they propel me to do stuff and such, I just want to control them more. And I certainly don't want to be motivationless. But I am and it sucks.

In hindsight, this is somewhat inevitable. I was feeling this way during Christmas break, after the desperate but invigorating energy of fighting to correct the mistakes of my last depressive episode and finishing finals wore off. I found myself listless, unable to make decisions, uncaring about my life, lost without any purpose and at my core not caring about it. The thinking parts of my brain still knew I had to do stuff, that I wanted to do stuff, but my emotions and my motivational centers didn't. So I did very little, but deep inside I knew I had to defy this situation. So my mind tried various tricks to summon emotion and motivation. Finally, I launched myself on a great bike ride, pushing myself to the breaking limit, and finally emerging emotional, strongly determined, and alive again. And at that point I started to look at my life, and I wasn't happy with what I saw. The directionlessness remained even though my motivation to correct it now returned. I was unsure how though. Unfortunately, as my emotions returned so did my negative ones. They had never gone away but they were dulled during my period of feeling empty and motivationlessness. Now they returned, not in full force, but enough that indecision siezed me, and my confusion over what to do with my life intensified. Ultimately, I decided as I was deciding to keep an option open, one that I was questioning now but one that was still viable, I decided to continue pursuing my application for the graduate school of education. This gave me a momentary direction as I fought to overcome my anxieties and fears to accomplish this. Slowly I became filled with a determination to finish this, to finish this because it was finishing something, a deed that was all too rare in my life. So I did it, I overcame my fears and finished everything up and now today, nearly everything is complete. I just need to dot the i's, although an emergency might emerge which I would have to deal with. So now what, I ask myself and I am unsure.

Now the emptiness has returned as once again I have finished a struggle. The feelings aren't as bad but still are very bad. I maybe should go on another one of those tiring, straining bike rides. I think it worked last time because it appealed to my desire for power, one of the few emotions that remained fully intact. It also appeals to a variety of dulled emotions, bringing them to the forefront, like my desire to improve my body, my love for biking and my desire to be happy, my desire to hurt myself because the biking is so straining, and my desire to accomplish things. Probably other emotions were involved as well.

But it's hard to muster up the emotions to do that. I don't have much of a motivational drive, even one to recover the emotional drive although I know I must do that. Last time I motivated myself to do that by watching Space Cowboys (a great movie, although the whole Russians have a missle thing in space subplot felt kind of tacked on, the charm was just old guys recovering lost glory). And I'm not sure it will work. Tricks and deeper solutions to emotional problems rarely work multiple times for me. The parts of my mind that work against me always find a way around these things.

I also am looking for a more permenant solution. I think I must ultimately reorient my life. I have planned to move away a little from orienting my life around academics which was my previous way of living (especially last semester when I was taking three ackwardly scheduled classes). I have made certain moves in this direction by creating a hugely open schedule. But I am still uncertain as to what I need to do and how exactly I need to reorient my life. Also fear, indecision and other emotions, though dulled remain strong enough to bother me. Add to this the who motivationlessness and you have a rather bad situation moving no where fast.

One thing I kept remembering during my winter break was the words of Thanos in the Infinity War (my brother got me the book for Christmas and I loved it). To paraphrase it: "To survive certain ressurections must take place." Certain parts of my life which once gave me an overwhelming sense of drive and purpose must be brought back and pushed to the front of my personality. New motivations must also be discovered. My biology, my emotions are arrayed against me, but I must overcome these things, otherwise...

Suicide is a possibility. My depression remains, though dull and the annoyance of a directionless, motivationless life and the desire for a sense of power (killing my self does make me feel powerful) might overcome the saner parts of my mind. But my depression is dulled, and my impulse is to go along with the flow, doing absolutely nothing, responding to events, such as the problems generated by this attitude, but then sinking back into the emptiness. That is a very scary possibility. I once swore to myself that even depression was better than being devoid of passion, and I renew that idea now. I must renew myself, there is no other option.

My spiritual emotions also feel dulled, but my mind still has a determination to reach out to God, and I still have a strong faith and love for God deep in my soul, maybe that will help. Or maybe I will be unable to capitalize on that.

A possibility of failure is very real, and it worries me. That is perhaps the reason for the melodramatics. I don't like blowing up these emotions to epic proportions. Ok, I actually love it, it's like crack to me. But like crack it is ultimately self-destructive. But maybe this sort of elevation of emotions can help me ressurect some of them and maybe alright in the short term, although I cannot stay in my head dwelling on my emotions forever. This would in fact prevent me from doing the actions that ultimately I want to do, that these ressurections are supposed to drive me to do.

Hope, love and faith. These are enough, but do I have enough of these. We will find out, the hard way. Stay tooned for the next exciting adventure of Rand and the Insanity Birgade: The Mouth of the Void.

That's enough melodramatics. Even when dramatics are warrented they must be limited. Especially if I am to apply my logical parts to figure out solutions to my problems.

One solution I think is a good woman to devote a part of myself too. I have always believed in the healing power of women (I'm going to save more on my opinions on women for a future session), but I have learned that you can't depend on getting a girlfriend. It would be nice, but other measures must be considered. More clubs would be a good idea, but I have heard very little on that front since it is the beginning of the year. I also am in flux on whether to remain a Libertarian, although currently I am sticking with it, especially since the club has always been a valuable social outlet for me. More writing and more writing-related activities is also a good idea, although it often requires emotion and motivation which I am in short supply of. I did write a few pretty good poems today, so maybe I still can summon it up when I need it. Psycologist visits and talking to my psychiatrist might also help, but ultimately it is up to me. All of these are possible helps, but not definite, and while my mind is still considering other options, it all requires motivation. Maybe a bike ride will help, but I don't know. That is the greatest truth of this emptiness, I don't know.

Again enough melodramatics. In fact, I better stop this session before I get into how my mental problems reflect the battles between good and evil (maybe I'll visit that in another session when I'm feeling in more control of the melodramatics). But I'll try to revisit this whole emptiness thing in a couple more sesssions, maybe another one today or something. So take it to your head, take it to your heart, and remember that Rand rocks. (I think I'll add a little more to my ending, I dunno if I'll keep it long term but I like saying it) Goodnight Folks!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Doom, the Doomed, and the Doomiest

So this starter isn't a song reference, even though in my last session promised more song reference starters (by starters I mean titles, and by titles I mean titles). But this phrase came to me and so I'll use it. What does it mean? I'm not sure. Those who dance in darkness...

If anyone ever reads the story that line's from that'll be great, but as it is I've submitted nothing to any publication for a while. The last thing I submitted was a packet of poems last January, and that was the first thing I submitted since I got to college. Overall, it's a pretty poor record. What's keeping me back? Lack of will to submit? Of course. But also lack of will to work on my stories. Even when I write I haven't been putting in the editting and refining muscle necessary to get my writing going. My hope? That I can actually consistantly write and edit pieces and then submit them as the semester goes on, anything less (unless I get a girlfriend) and this semester will be declared a failure.

That being said, I did not do any writing now or today even and I'm not planning to as the evening minutes pass away. Why? Well, like many things (but unlike other things) it's complex. I always felt that the mind had many interconnected but distinct parts, sometimes working together, sometimes working against each other. The state of my life is closely tied to the state of my mind which is tied to whether these parts are moving in a good direction. Right now they are moving in different directions, some good, some bad. I did call professors, get things arranged, so yes that is working out alright. My will to finish this application (even if it is not something I want the fact that I am seeing it through is important) is strong enough to overcome my anxieties (although partially this is because other people are looking over my shoulder on this one, which is an aid to my will to get it done but still a source of resentment). However my will to stay healthy and to stay on task on other projects is iffy. Yet my hopes are still going strong, and I still have hope tommorow will be better. Probably once this application is out of the way I can let other projects take a more prominent place. Maybe later I can get things together.

That is a dangerous statement there. Maybe later I can get things together. Yet I did accomplish somethings today and I am still settling in. So maybe later is perhaps justified. But you need to watch out. Sometimes later can kill you. Sometimes later is another word for doom. That's enough for this session.

So take it to your head, take it to your heart and remember Rand rocks.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Everybody Hurts Sometimes

I have decided to start out my sessions with music references as the default, although it's not a hard and fast rule. It gives me a lot of opportunities for cool names and I can claim it is a homage to that awesome and legendary anime series Cowboy Bebop. I had a big beginning going, but my browser crashed and I lost it and I'm somewhat less than intrested in restarting it. Let me give you the gist of it. Last blog less than satisfactory. Don't just list random events, investigate issues in random events.

That said let's move on to random events. Oh and I'll try to include more sessions over all (desire multi-daily, daily would be satisfactory), and I'll try to bring in the philosophy as well (and the funk, can't forget that funk).

Ok, again, back to the random events. One random event is my bad mood. Bad mood is quite lame as a phrase so how about tulmultous temperment. It is sort of an event since it is not say the constant depression rather it is a sudden down spell. And what caused this downspell. Let's analyzed. I woke up, that sucked. Well, waking up itself doesn't suck, it's what you wake up to. I woke up to tiredness and a distaste for my classes. Don't get me wrong I like learning, but going to class, eh, it's not great, especially when it's your main profession. I remember when I was working at camp, how much like high school it felt. College still feels like that too. I guess life sometimes treats you like that. Sometimes. There are good classes. I mean, there are classes which are really interesting, ones I'm not really sure on right now due to my not knowing my professors and not knowing really which classes I'm taking, but honestly, that's work too. It's interesting work, but it's work. Then is there fun to be had in college classes. I could say my writing workshop class is fun (although sometimes when I feel like a talentless slob, it makes me absolutely miserable just thinking about going to writing workshop).

Maybe it's just that, maybe that's why it's so hard to get up in the morning, but maybe it's something more. Each day is a choice, do I do anything or just go back to sleep and sleep until I cannot sleep any more. And when I wake in my dorm room there's no one to force me to choose the former and not the later. Granted, I always wanted that freedom, but there are prices to be paid for freedom and this is part of the price. When no one's forcing you to work, you have to summon up the motivation. And that's never been my strong suit. I mean I can tell you logical reasons why I should be motivated, I can give you a spiritual lecture, or I can appeal to your feelings, but getting up I can't fully convince myself that activity, any activity is worthwhile, always a part of me doubts that. Part of it is my life isn't particularly satisfying. I enjoy learning, and if I'm hanging out with my friends (an irregular activity that can happen once every week or so, or once every month or so) that's great, but that's not a satisfying life, at least not for me. I want to feel that I'm producing and creating something or else that I am changing the world somehow. I want to feel like I'm making an impact or else that I am writing something great. Or if we want to look down the road I want to feel that I can give a love to someone, a love only I can give (ie as a husband or parent or as part of a critical friendship). Even if I'm on the way to those goals that's fine. I guess what I'm saying is I want to be pursuing my dreams, and maybe if I was doing that it wouldn't be so hard to wake up in the morning.

But is that true? Or is that just a romance that will not leave my head? I wake pretty easily when I'm at my house, usually, though if I'm tired less so. And there I don't necessarily feel like I'm pursuing my dreams, in fact I feel like I'm stuck in the past. But I guess I also feel that I'm a vital part of the family, I guess, for all my doubts I do have some sense of belonging to my family, at least my immediate family. But is it enough? No, not really, I can wake up, I can do things, but there are so many moments when a restlessness comes to me, when an apathy comes to me, when a sense that I'm not doing anything comes to me and I want to leave so badly that my arms and legs began to tingle. When I'm at home, or even when I'm with my very close friends, I'm not really an outsider, but I'm not really an insider either, I can feel a sense of belonging, of being home, but it fades in and out, and I don't feel enough belonging. I like it at home, but I don't like enough to stay. I need to start chasing my dreams. I need to start pushing myself on this. But to push yourself, you need the will, and the will is hard to come by.

I pray for willpower, and I do think God listens. But still, I don't think God would completely change who I am, and I am inherintly a person who has willpower issues, but I can overcome them with God's help. Some of the readers might be uncomfortable with God talk, perhaps, but hey, I'm a religous person and if this is to be my venture I don't want to hide that. Maybe I don't want to hit people over the head with it, but it's part of who I am, and it's something I believe, so, well, so that's that really.

I'll try to get in another session before the day is out, especially since at college I sleep very little and the night can become very long, but for now, take it to your head, take it to your heart and remember, Rand rocks.

And I'm hungry like a wolf

Given the hour I probably should have referenced something with a little more of a night theme for the title, but when time pasts midnight I keep thinking hour of the wolf, which gives me the idea hungry like a wolf, and that is an awesome song!!! Oh yeah!!! So I'm tired, unhealthy, depressed with nothing to do and I'm denying my body sleep still. Why? Why you might ask? Why, oh why might you ask? Because I have a number of things to do tommorow and as long as I'm staying in this night I don't have to face them. There are 4 hours until daybreak, and probably another 2 hours before anyone expects you do to do anything, that seems like an eternity right now. An eternity spent in peace without responsibility, except the worry of the next day hangs over every minute and your body continues to turn against you. And I do need to go to sleep, but I'm not sure I'll be able to do what I need to tommorow, and if I don't? Then what? Then what you might ask? Well, plenty of things could happen. My mind could rally and I could repair all damage by the day after tommorow, or my mind could fail and I could kill myself. Faced with such prospects it just seems safer to delay and postpone. I don't have anything greatly enjoyable planned that I can find in the next day anyways so why go forward, except that I must and truth be told, tommorow in all likely-hood will be a good day and more enjoyable than staying up into the wee, wee, wee hours of the night. And so I must go to sleep.

I think of it and time seems on my side right now, it stretches before me infinitely allowing this period of relative calm and peace to last forever, and tommorow time will be pushing me from event to event like a pinball. Still, tommorow is where I must go, and it is where I want to go, and so with great sorrow I must say goodbye to the night and all the wolves, hungry or not, who dwell in this hour.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Baby did you forget to take your meds

The funny thing is, I was singing that in the shower when I realized yes, indeed I had forgotten to take my meds. Funny, funny stuff and excellent, excellent song. Though it was a bit odd to here the main singer take on the final chorus. I thought the whole thing dialoguish at first and I think his "intense" (that's not derrogatory it's just describing the type of singing he does at the end) singing voice that he launched into at the end was not the best, but it's still an excellent, excellent song, and who knows maybe otherwise it wouldn't have come out as well. Now that that's said on to other matters.

I've been looking on view count, and it seems my philosophical blog got a lot of views. Perhaps I should launch more of them. However, I do not feel like doing so right now and so I am writing a rather scattered brain little blog that serves more to get down thoughts and further introduce you to my personality. However, it is unlikely probably to get many views, so what's the point. Ah, whatever, maybe it'll surprise me yet, and if anyone then checks out the archive once I'm rich and famous (oh I will be), they'll get a little more of my personality and thoughts.

What are my thoughts right now? They are focused on my scheduling and plans for the next semester. You see, the next semester will start tommorow and so I'm reviewing my schedule seeing if I want to make any changes. Looking at it I realized that my self-imposed scheduling limitations are making most classes out of my reach, however, I think I'm ok with that. This semester will be about me, about exploring my non-school side, perhaps to generate a little more pride in life and maybe get some direction too. So that's that.

My schedule also has a nice variety of classes that will again let me try out different things, though not perhaps in a depth that will help me make any final decisions. I was a little bit ansy about revisiting math in my new schedule, but after a winter break when I realized I still love analyzing stuff, I think this math might be nice, perhaps.

I've also been checking out Megatokyo a lot within the last month or so (I ate through the archives within a couple days). A "vetern" manga reader said on amazon that in was largely for amateurs and just wish furfillment for otakus, but I don't really think so. I am perhaps not a "vetern" (I don't think I'm an amateur, perhaps somewhere in the middle), but think Gallager does a good job of capturing the good, bad, and the crazy in the geek's soul, and I think his story is pretty engaging, it is a bit slow, but it keeps moving with new events and stuff (even if said events are sometimes less than the main story at times) and any "vetern" manga reader should be used to slow moving stories by now.

Anywho, I think that's all I want to write for now. Perhaps the scatterbrain nature of this will attract a few views, or maybe when I tell some friends to check out this blog they'll find oh, what a normal blog. But, that's just for today probably, I'll try to get more philosophy in and more crazy in in future blogs, still it's nice to change pace every now and then. So take to your head, take it to your heart, and remember Rand rocks.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Got to have faith, sort of

So in this session of my blog I have decided to ventue out into philosophy. Is this a good idea? Perhaps, time will tell. I dunno if I really should use this venue for philosophy, my sessions in this are never that well organized and I don't care to organize them that well because this is a blog. If I want to write an essay, use an essay forum, if you want to write a rant, blogs are fine. Yet this is not formal philosophy, and these ideas are perhaps not well enough formulated to deserve a full essay (also I get anxious about writing full essays, so it's a little additional work to get over that and I'm feeling lazy). Besides, I can always rework these ideas formally later. And finally, perhaps the most important reason, this venue is one I can easily use and which has a vague chance of getting some views.

Ok, now for the ideas themselves. This is something I've been thinking about for a while, lots of people say I don't just believe I know for their ideas. This is common for certain types of Christians as well as for more materialist people (I don't mean greedy, I mean those who do not consider spiritual matters important). Honestly, I don't think this is possible. We all start out with some beliefs. This might be the belief in our senses, a belief in reason, or a belief in our friends, family, or the local preacher. The physical world offers no particular reason you should believe any of those sources (of course to even consider the reasons you should believe in those sources you must believe in reason, but I'm describing stuff not giving advice, or at least not directly giving advice). We can say that our instincts or biology tell us to believe this or that, but there is no reason to believe in this or that. In a universe with nothing but reason, good and evil have no meaning, because there is no inherint reason to do one thing or the other or nothing in fact. Well, perhaps doing nothing has the advantage of simplicity. We can say that we should preserve life, that that is a natural motivation, and maybe nature does advise us that life is precious, but there is no reason to believe nature.

Ultimately, we have to go with our instincts though, because our instincts are our most basic guide to the world. Based on those instincts we will consciously and unconsciously start to believe certain things. We also might adopt certain types of processing new beliefs, what I mean by this is, among the beliefs we have we might also believe that when faced with a new idea we should listen to our feelings, or we might believe we should listen to our reasoning, or that we should listen to our conscious or unconscious. And then we use these beliefs to shape how we view the world and what ideas we accept or reject and what new beliefs we accept or reject. This is how we think.

Here's the problem. If this is so, it is very possible for two people to be completely justified in disagreeing with each other on fundamentally different and conflicting views. Contrary to the ideas of some, instincts are not simply our basic biological urges, they are also shaped by our experiences, they are in fact a part of our subconscious. We are all different, and thus our subconsciouses are different, and thus our instincts are different, and since our instincts determine our most basic beliefs, thus our basic beliefs are different and may be conflicting. How do you resolve such a dilemma? We like to think we have some common ground in our beliefs but there is no reason for that. Our common biological urges could be so overwelmed by our experiences that our instincts bear little resemblence to them. So what do we do?

We could say let by-gones be by-gones, but that neglects the fact that certain beliefs require actions, sometimes ones that force us to react. Sometimes conflicts arise. Is there any hope for resolution of these conflicts. Me, what do I think? Maybe, if there is a spiritual plane of existance (which I believe) and there is a God who is absolutely good (again which I believe) maybe he can guide us to a resolution. Perhaps. That is something I'd like to believe, and perhaps I do. Maybe. But sometimes what we believe is shrouded by the mists and shadows of the curtain between our conscious and unconscious minds, and the barriers between God and man can sometimse be great, so what do I believe? I'm not sure, but I like to think I believe in hope and love. So yes, yes I believe that we can resolve our problems if we can try hard enough and open ourselves up to righteousness. Well, that's what I believe.

Well, that's my philosophical session. A little bit of a mess if I do say so myself. But it does have a point, an idea, and it gets it across as only a blog can. With a good amount of feeling, with a little less than perfect clarity, with an almost stream of consciousness air, and with often poor grammer. That's really all I have to say for this session, so it take it to your head, take it to your heart and remember Rand rocks. (I thought I'd use this ending again, but maybe I'll start using "Goodnight Folks!" though it looks ackward written out like that.)

Friday, January 12, 2007

Somewhere over the rainbow

I just saw an episode of Scrubs (awesome, awesome show) which involved Wizard of Oz metaphors (they tend to carry these metaphors a little too far sometimes, but it's still an awesome show) and JD, the main character, was just trying to get home. Of course they ended with the classic "Somewhere over the rainbow/There's a place called home" or something like that. It reminds me of my conflicted attitudes about my home. This is definitely one of those sessions which I never, ever, ever what my parents to read, but a lot of times, even among my family, even among my close family, I still feel like an outsider, like I don't belong, like I'm not home. I mean, I take this as my shelter, my place to stay, and my little realm, but it's not where I want to come back to after all the storms of my life. Where do I want to go back to? I have no idea.

I feel restless nowadays, I want to go somewhere get out of New Jersey, travel around the world. I'd like to think if I travelled long enough I could find a place called home, and maybe I could. But maybe what I'd really need is a job I could really enjoy, or a woman I could really love, or a life that I could be satisfied with keeping steady and without feeling a need to radically change it, and then wherever that was, that could be home. But I don't have that now, at least not really. There are moments when I feel at home, but overall, no. It is still somewhere over the rainbow, I'd like to think it's out there, somewhere on this green Earth. But if not, at least I can trust that I have my true home up in heaven, and if nothing else can be found, that will still be enough.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

No, I am not dead

I realize that I have missed two days of sessions, but no I am not dead. That would be a nice little dramatic return if I had some regular readers or perhaps a long history of doing sessions at least once a day. Ah, but there is time to build up all those things, time enough for everything, time enough for love (a novel by Robert A. Heinlein, one I haven't actually read, but which sounds very good). Actually lately, I have felt time closing in on me a little, with my application to grad. school and my looking at career options. But that is because the time of a part of my life is closing down, the undergrad years at the most can last one more, and then... well, then presumably grad. school, though I'm kind of annoyed at the prospect. It is more school, and more delay from actually having a career. I always call my career part of my life "my real life," but life doesn't get more real or less real from one stage to another really. Perhaps it's just that in the career stage I have more power, and that definitely makes the career stage more attractive to me. Yet, I don't think I can ignore this part of my life, especially after my experience during winter break. During that period I realized (although this was an exaggeration in a depressed state) that my life right now involves nothing really meaningful. My social relations are defective, I'm not making a difference helping others, and I'm not really working towards a career I want (I haven't making great progress towards becoming a writer, and I can't say I really want to be a teacher (or at least I have an emotional pull to that position), although I have been writing somewhat which is an arguement against this). Overall I just felt that my life, or at least my life as myself, didn't make a great difference, if I was stripped of my particular characterisics, the world would be no worse off, and neither would I. That's definitely an exaggeration, but it gave me a desire to build up my current life to a point where I find satisfaction with it day to day. So that's that, and that's something I'm working on.

I realize that sounds like something out of a pop-psych. book, and I'd avoid it if it didn't actually have a good amount of significance for my life. If I can't get satisfaction day to day, it will be very difficult to maintian my will to live during a breakdown, and without that, fatal actions become an option (of course even without a will to live I still have fear, reason, and my faith to keep me alive).

The question remains, as it always does when you have a determination to improve your life, what is it you actually must do and how to you push yourself to do it when parts of your mind are actively working against you. The answer is what plagues most people who have made this determination. Again and again I have come to this point, only to become exhausted and frustrated with unrealized hopes of self-improvement. But if I cease to try, my mind will lack the motivation necessary to seek out social contacts, some of the more deeper forms of happiness, and career or life goals, which will in the end make me pretty miserable. Given this, what is my move or moves. One of them, I think is working on this, as well as perhaps a diary (a diary, yes, a diary, I'm not going to skimp on the words here, it's not a journal, it's not a log, it's a diary, and I'm still as manly as they come (they being moderately manly men)). Other moves, well, doing more stuff with my friends (though I'm uncomfortable asking to do stuff with them that doesn't involve money and I'm still a cheapskate) (I'm a bit worried how my friends might react if they ever read that part, but whatver). One of the most critical moves I must consider is the choice of career I should pursue. Yes, I can always change my career, but if I want to be satisfied with my life day to day pursuing a life which I really want would be helpful. But pursuing a rational course that might lead to a life I might like would be ok if I could build up other sources of satisfaction, like friends, volunteer or club work, submitting stuff to magazines and such, perhaps, perhaps, perhaps. Such indecision is not natural for a man like me (actually it is my normal state), but circumstances have been very confusing for me of late (and by of late I mean for the last 10 years), but such things must just be deal with. After all, such is the way of the world.

You're all bums you know

I like calling people bums. It's a nice way to pretend that I'm a bad ass, because honestly I'm not. I also like to call people bastards in certain circles, but you can't say that to everyone. I'd like to clarify, I'm not really serious with these names, but throwing them around even in a joking manner allows me to pretend I have a little edge. Of course, if the numbers on my views counter are correct, which I'm somewhat doubtful on, my readers are bums, they really are. After all, according to the view counter I have about 10 views today so far, but no comments (I'd settle for a kudos, but honestly, that seems kind of lame). Here's an issue that could provoke some contraversy, I'm thinking of plugging my actual website more. (it's www.angerlfire.com/freak2/rand/home.html , but I don't know how to do the fancy html stuff so it's not, well, fancy and I can't really make a link here) I doubt that will really provoke much response, but I'd like a little more traffic on my website. So far I think all the views have been mine over the years. I actually haven't been putting much effort into updating my website, but maybe if I got some more views... Eh, that's enough about that.

I'd rather not talk about my life as much as I have been, but that's been on my mind a lot lately. At least the future has been, for reasons I'm tired of explaining. My teaching school application has been progressing, but it's getting time to start begging for recommendation letters and honestly I hate that. I'm supposed to start today, but I've been procrastinating, which perhaps explains why I'm doing two sessions today instead of one. The rest of my time I've been watching Suzuka, a nice little anime that more people should check out. It's available on www.peekvid.com. It's premise is similiar to a harem anime, but it's plays out more like a high school romance. I like it perhaps because it's got a lovable loser character (a type I can always relate to) and it's got sweet romantic themes (I know this makes me sound like a girl, but I love romance and such, at least in moderation), and honestly, perhaps it's because I still feel a little bit like I'm in high school. I mean I know I'm in college now and everything, but nothing has really changed. Well, of course I have more freedom with my courses and all, and I'm living in a dorm (well not now because it's break), but in some ways I feel less advanced in my life than I did in high school. I mean then I at least had my own room and I was relatively popular in school. Back in high school I was actually more focused on writing, at least poetry that is. And I was published regularly in a literary magazine which I have to say was pretty damn nice. But now... But now is break, and soon the next semester will come and new chances will arise and it being college, those chances can lead me further in the direction I want to go than my high school opportunities. So that's college for you. All you in high school don't expect your world to completely change, you're still you after all and you're still in school. But again, such is the way of the world. (I don't like sounding so fatalistic, but I can't deny my current reality, though I can still hope for the future.)

(By the way, if anyone is enough of a non-bum to post, is the size of the text too small, I like my text small, but changing it is a concession I'm willing to make for my audience.)

Monday, January 8, 2007

One More Time

Again I return to this blog and to my readers, whoever you might be. I'm tempted to do a diary like entry but honestly, that seems kind of lame, especially given the lack of notable activity I've had today. This temptation would probably not occur were it not for an unusual lack of ideas for writing. Perhaps it is time to peruse my large library of random thoughts and pick an odd one to write about.

How about Star Trek? I really do love Star Trek, well, most of it at least. The Original Series struck me as a little to 60s for me to declare it a great show, but I like to watch it every now and then and it has a few outstanding episodes. The Next Generation rocked, Picard was awesome, as were Worf and Data. I loved the way it delved into the high-level politics of Klingon/Federation/Romulan diplomacy. Early on there were a couple episodes that didn't hit their mark and every now and then you'd get an episode that was too dry, but overall the series was one of the best dramatic shows I've seen on television. Deep Space Nine is also up there. The greater plot value of the series added to the pull of the story, though it tended to occassionally indulge in silliness which was just annoying. Again it had it's off episodes but it was an overall triumph. Voyager, not so much. The concept was nice, but in hindsight the concept was part of the problem. Stranding a starship so far away from home and making it move constantly means that the interstellar politics central to the last two series has to be pushed back a little, especially since the politics that were actually in the previous two series had to be excluded since they were in a different area of the galaxy. It had a few nice episodes here and there, but it was too willing to be silly, the characters often fell flat and the plots lacked the conceptual depth and dramatic complexity you expect from Star Trek. It felt dumbed down. Star Trek Enterprise also suffered from this complaint, but it also had too much baggage. While Voyager suffered from being to far away from the mainstream Star Trek universe, Enterprise suffered from being intermeshed in the center of the Star Trek universe. This gave it so many constraints that it had to indulge in annoying and convoluted time travel storylines (something which bugged me about Voyager too) to get some original drama going. It's failure was not something I mourned.

Except I did mourn it, not because it was a good series, but because it meant that somewhere out there Star Trek was still being made. The death of Enterprise was especially hard when coupled with the failure of the last several Star Trek movies. While books are still being made, Star Trek was made by a tv series and it was supposed to always be a tv series, so I would like a new tv series. I heard rumors about a possible klingon series which would be very cool, but I'd like something, anything. Actually, I want something to capture the old glory, but it would be comforting to know Star Trek is still going strong and moving forward (that's another thing I had against Enterprise, it wasn't telling new stories, just fleshing out the past), even in a diminished form. I hear there's a new movie coming out, which gives me some hope, but it sounds like it's set in the era of Kirk, which saddens me. Star Trek was meant to be forever marching into the future, not mired in its own backstory. But that is the way things are. Maybe if I ever have a voice in Hollywood I can change things, but for now, I can only hope, dream and watch reruns.

That's enough for this session. I hope it entertained or gave you food for thought or something, and if you're a wheeler or dealer in Hollywood, I hope it inspired you to once more boldly go where no man has gone before.

Sunday, January 7, 2007

A man, a plan, a canal

Panama! I couldn't really figure out a good way to start out this session so I thought I'd start out with a non sequitor. It's not a perfect solution (which as a perfectionist bugs me), but it allows me to begin writing and that's the important thing. Perhaps it was the lack of such a start which made me unable do a session yesterday (I'm going to call these entries sessions, largely because it sounds good and I can also call it an homage to Cowboy Bebop). I did attempt to write one of these yesterday, but what I was writing seemed so completely awful that I had to scrap it. Today I think I can do better however, so here I am.

The topic yesterday was going to be how I'm having enormous amounts of trouble writing a personal statement for my graduate school of education application. I'm actually working on that right now (this is in some ways a procrastination, but it is a productive one so I can excuse it). It's only 500 words, so it's not something that logically I should have trouble on. I'm not saying I write reams and reams of text regularly, but I'm fairly capable of pumping out a 5-page essay, so 500 words should be easy. But it isn't. Why? Probably the same reason I have trouble with most assignments, I'm having trouble finding a beginning. I did write one beginning, but I found it so mind-bendingly grandiouse that I probably can't use it. So I'm still trying to figure out what to do with this. The angle I've been working on is teaching shapes the children shapes the world, but that stuff leads to the gradiousity which I've been having trouble with. A graduate school is unlikely to what a meglo-maniac. So I'm a little stumped.

I suppose this is partly because I'm uncertain myself why I want to become a teacher and if I actually do want to become a teacher. My mind is darting back and forth between hating and loving the prospect. Well, rarely do I out and out love the prospect, but sometimes I at least embrace it. Other times I view it like the plague, if I even get close to it I will catch the disease and die with pus bursting from each inch of my skin (nice little image there). I like teaching people about stuff, sort of, I suppose, I like talking about stuff I'm interested in, and I feel a near-compulsion to be through about it. I'm not sure. When you know exactly how you feel about something you can weigh the positives and the negatives and come out with a nice tidy little answer. But when you're not sure about things, decisions become difficult and unclear. Such is my dilemma.

The logical course of action now is to write this personal statement, send out the application, then maybe due some volunteering or a part time job involving something teaching related and explore diffrent options through classes and extracirculars, and then make a decision only in September when I really need to. However, I'm finding myself struggling to find the motivation to complete this application. I have to logically push myself without an emotional impetus, and unfortunately, the logical side of me isn't the most creative side, at least word-wise (math-wise it can be very creative). I dunno, maybe I'm overblowing this and wallowing in self-pity, I have a nasty habit of doing that, but what I can say is I'm having trouble doing this application and it is leaving me annoyed and frustrated. But it can't hurt (well it does require the straining effort to complete the application, but it can't hurt long term), and it can help, so I should do this application, I guess. Wish me luck. (I'm inclined to let this session end with that command, it's a fine note to end on even if it's not good for a regular ender.)

Friday, January 5, 2007

This time with a little feeling

Well, I have to say I'm disappointed with my progress with this blog. I intended this to be updated multi-daily, but instead I have completely missed two days. A variety of factors contributed to this state of affairs. First of all, I have been somewhat busy, at least yesterday I was. Secondly, my productive drive has been waning as I have been coming off of my post-breakdown high. Finally, I have dubbed this as a productive venture so my mind has started to sabatoge it, contributing feelings and thoughts to disuade me from working on this. This is fucking annoying really. I think only a curse word really expresses the fullness of my frustration with my anti-productive drive. I wish I knew something more creative than the often overused work fuck, but I don't, having led a relatively sheltered life.

At times like these I take stock of my current life, usually from a depressed point of view which automatically concludes, no matter what I'm actually doing, that I'm not really accomplishing anything. But if I force myself to take a more objective view (but can we ever escape bias, still we can try, and that effort is worth taking if we wish to truly understand the world, as long as we admit to ourselves the its imperfections), I find I have a decidely mixed picture. I have started to reach out to friends, trying to renew social contacts. I have checked in with three friends who I have not talked two in a while. I have at least tried to arrange meetings with two friends and have successfully arranged meetings with two-three friends, which I must say is the best success in my social contact efforts since winter break started. However, that said, I have continued to dangerously delay my efforts in regards to my graduate school of education application, and I have taken little effort to improve my fictional prose or poetry efforts or start submitting the work. I have started a diary of sorts which has allowed me to write reguarly and get my feelings out and forced me to think about my feelings more, however, my mind has been sabatoging that too sending thoughts and feelings to block me from writing in that. Of course, perhaps I'm blaming my mental disorders too much for my current lack of effort on my diary and on my blog, I have also been lazy of late. I have noted my problems on my blog efforts but I think it is definitely a positive step that I have started a blog since it is an opportunity for public writing.

In another positive step I have told my parents about my recent breakdown and have gotten a new psycologist with whom I can meet regurally, unlike my previous psycologist whose semi-retired status prevented that. However, I'm not sure if we can afford the guy so it is questionable whether I will keep him. He's an interesting man, analytical (of course, as he's pointed out my impression of this might be because he's just asking diagnostic questions, on the other hand he has stated his belief that he wants to find the root causes of my problems himself instead of relying on my psychiatrist's recommendations (this also means he might be able to reduce my need for medication, which I would love, especially since I have in light of my recent break down increased)), he's colder than most of my other psycologists though, which may impede normal therapy sessions, he comes from a court psycology background, which is just cool, he doesn't give out the self-satisfied vibe, which I dunno, it might suggest that he has himself problems that might taint his recommendations, on the other hand it might simply be the result of a different outlook on life than most of my other psycologists, perhaps one similiar to mine which views discontent not as necessarily bad if it is constructive. However, this is a highly preliminary view and shouldn't be taken as fact. If my psycologist actually views this I hope he doesn't get the wrong impression that these views are solidified actual judgements, they're just feelings I get which unfortunately I must act upon in the decision of whether to keep this guy or not. I believe that solidified actual judgements are not something we should have because who are we to judge the inner most workings of another human being, as the Bible says, judgement belongs to the Lord, unfortunately decisions must be made regarding other persons and so we must make guesses.

Let me finish up with this self inventory. I've started listening to more music, I haven't picked up too many more new books since I finished The Infinity War, nor have I tried more new shows, rather I'm rewatching the Christmas DVDs, I'm talking more, but I thinking I'm talking to much, sometimes cutting off people, and I feel I'm dangerously close to revealing actual information about family members which they might not like to be revealed. I've already shared more information about myself than some in my family might like (that statement in itself might be unfairly revealing, but I'm willing to take that risk) but that's my life and ultimately my decision. Besides, I'm using a false identity which can hide this info from any who could really use it against me (at least the current amateur investigators among my employers who I'll be dealing with in the near future). Last point, because I'm getting tired of talking about my problems, I've also gone to a job fair and explored new jobs (insurance underwriter sounds interesting, though it might force me to make rather devestating decisions about other people which might be painful, but hey no pain no gain), still I've find nothing which I really want.

Let's get off my problems and my feelings, because hey, I spent too many years being a whiney bastard and I don't want to sink back into that. Here's a little fact about introspection, you do it too much and you just end up wallowing in self-pity or self-satisfaction and end up lost within your head. My psycologist suspects that's a symptom of my disease, perhaps I don't know but it's something I got to work on. This blog is nice because it allows me to turn this painful abundance of thinking into something that I can contribute to the world, even if it is perhaps a little crappy (the way it's shaping up I think it's not bad, but I haven't done a real assessment of it and neither has anyone else). Sometime or other I should put my essay (not yet written) on crap on here. I'm undecided exactly how much of my real writing and whether I should link this to my website. It's somewhat risky if I do a two-way link, because that would allow someone googling my name (if he actually found my website (but if he searches my website source he might find it)) to link that with this identity and then with all my problems which I've begun to catalogue here (although he might get a sense of my profound weirdness from my website alone). A one-way weblink might be safer, but if this site does somehow gain popularity among my non-friends it might be risky to give random people access to my real identity who were just interested in Rand, but heck, I always thought fame and more importantly the power it would bring (fame=influence=power and I've got to say, my soul hungers for power) would be ncie, and even if the amount of non-friends who see this are small in number, it would give me a little bit of fame. So sure, I'll hook this up with my other website, although right now I don't really know how. I'm actually not a tech-genius as some of my friends assume and as I may have implied to my prospective job employers at the job fair (it's not a real lie since I do have some programming skills and I usually am able to learn what I need to solve tech problems even if it is just a rough, non-technical solution, and I never really claimed to be a tech genius just said I have a computer science background, which is true, I say this to convince me as much as whoever might be reading this since it does prod a little, just a little guilt). But anyway as I stated, I usually am able to find out what I need to and so I will. But until then if you want to visit my website it is http://www.angelfire.com/freak2/rand/home.html . As you can see Rand is an old alterego, but my real identity is peppered around there. I think that's enough for this session. Take it to heart, to the head, and hopefully remember, Rand rocks. (maybe that's the ending I'm looking for, it's not quite perfect, but it has the potential to grow on me.)

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Foul and Fowl

As the emoticon (I hate using it, but it seems like something that can brighten up my blog a little so it's there) might indicate, my mood has moved in a rather negative direction. I dunno why exactly. There were things I meant to do today that I didn't do but that was as much a consequence of my bad mood (since a bad mood makes me apathetic and lazy) as they were a cause. It could be the result of the biological sway of my manic-depressive disorder, or it could be the problems of my life (not horrible problems, but we all have our difficulties) just happened to be a little closer to the edge of my mind today more than other days.
So discontent I seek distraction. When I'm in a mood like this I tend to avoid reading, since, well, I lose the patience to actually get into a book and I want to be relieved of my connection to reality as soon as possible. So I have gone on the internet and my resulting activity has been highly disappointing. I went to several of the normal sites I visit (though this not being the computer I usually use I could not visit all of those sites for various reasons), but the number of sites seems pitifully low. I blame Wikipedia for part of this problem. Whenever curious my searches tend to start and/or end with Wikipedia, whereas before this online encyclopedia became popular I would wander the web for some time, finding odd little sites in different nooks and crannies which intrigued me. My old bookmarks were lost for some reason about a year ago and with my web searches quick and direct I have come up with few new interesting sites. I suppose if I give this some actual effort, I can find new and interesting sites, but in the bad mood I'm in, I'm more inclined to lament the situation and blame wikipedia.
Thus undistracted I find myself fixated on my bad mood, an obsession which has passed from introspection to self-pity about a half-hour ago. Still, I retain enough soundness of mind to note certain things about this bad mood. First of all, I really need to get over it so that I can tackle my personal statement for my grad school application. Secondly, I should overcome my uncomfortableness with my brother's computer and use it to watch tv more often. Thirdly, my current mental situation shows a sign of improvement in the fact that I am writing now since often (or at least since I've started college and stopped writing as much poetry) my drive for writing is diminished to the point of obscurity by bad moods. This gives me hope for the future, despite my bad mood and the impending sense of doom I get from not working on my personal statement. Hope is a good note to sign off on, so I think I'll do that. I bid you adieu and wish you luck on your life's journeys. (How's that for an ender? I feel it's a little lacking, but it feels more me-ish in flavor)

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Greetings, salutations and other gestures of welcome

Greetings for the magnificent and glorious man who is Rand! Alter ego of a name I'd rather not use so that I might avoid certain people from examing this too closely. I intend for this to be somewhat raw with rather intense emotions that might worry some. This means some of my famliy and prospective employers cannot check this at least at the present time. But perhaps I can let my friends check this out and some of my family, although I might be writing about them which may make things akward. But I think that is a risk I can take at least in regards to my friends (my family I'm a little less sure about). Things might be a little less akward if I use puesodyms instead of their names so I probably will do that. But anyways, I plan to write and do stuff with this which I think might accomplish several goals not the least of which is improving my skill. Yet I'd also like this to serve as an actual blog, ie one people actually read instead of just one that sits here as a electronic journal on the net, which makes no sense since I could just keep text documents with my writings and spare myself the danger of an employer stumbling upon it and discovering my more troublesome thoughts.

Maybe I should also talk about my name Rand. It is obviously (or it should be obvious to anyone who reads this) that this is not my real name, but it is the name of a character in a story of mine and it serves as a bit of an alter ego. The name comes from the Rand function in C++, it's a random number generator and at the time I invented this name I was much more interested in computer science (Now less so, but aspects of it still intrigue me). Perhaps an influence was the name of Ayn Rand as a friend of mine speculated, but if so it was an unconscious one. But I like this name. I like it so much that I'm worried that I'll overuse it in my writing, but oh well, such is the way of the world. Rand is a man of talent and energy, of bravery and boldness, of eccentricity and calculating cleverness, of integrity and understanding, of faith and reason. He is in many ways one of the several ideal versions of myself. It'll be nice to get him out on the web and to indulge my imagination in creating a virtual identity for him. Maybe that effort will amount to something as I hope and Rand might become known at least as a blog writer, but even if not, I should have some fun working on him. So that's about that, I hope you have enjoy this entry, good night and good luck. (I should come up with a personal sign off but for now this will due.)