Jul 29, 2015

Morels of Morals

Q: What is the emotion underwriting moral superiority?
A: (unconfirmed)
Contempt
Fear
Pleasure

Q: From where does moral superiority stem?
A: (proposed) belief in right and wrong, and the application of this principle onto all interactions, human, fowl, or beast.

Q: Whom does moral superiority affect?
A: (proposed, unconfirmed) the affectations are extended to all who come in contact with a moral spirit but the most lasting damage is wrought upon he whom holds these beliefs. An careless moral superiorist stands at risk of the perceived power of morality becoming the most pleasurable of all sensations

Q: How does moral superiority form?
A: (conjecture, purely) genetics, cultural training, infectious other moralists.

Q: Why did moral superiority not die with religion?
A: (divinely guessed) although religion served as the house of rules (morals) that provided an ample frame or structure for a culture of moral superiority to develop, the emotional underpinning of superiority, once established, survives long beyond the life of its divine host, much as a morel in the forest flourishes on the tree, in life and in death.

Jul 28, 2015

not so

Not so secret secrets:

Modest Moose has not one but two drummers 

It's not entirely true in a factual sense but the following feels true: last Wed, I went to a Modest concert; it was my first

I spent the whole thing in rapturous fear

Tonight, I submitted my first OSS pull request. First in a long while. Maybe since my time at the Recurse Center.

I can't forgive -- I don't know how. And every sin is unforgivable. Especially yours.

Jul 26, 2015

other people

other people, like puddles on the surface of a glass carpet that I am trapped beneath.


words. what are words.

sometimes they're just that: pesky, wordy things.

Jul 25, 2015

what do you dream, love

"What are you doing love?"

"Chasing the dream, Ma. Chasing it with everything I've got."

"You're gonna have to wake up sometime, you know that love"

"But there ain't no dream when I'm awake."

Jul 24, 2015

VR

I v-introduced you to the team today. V is for virtual. Virtual, that modifier on reality.

All it really means is that I thought through the introductions. Mentally imagined them. Now you virtually know everyone. My Sims version of everyone can go out to drinks or run into each other at corners and it wouldn't be weird.

Virtually, we're all friends.

Jul 18, 2015

Weekend wandering

Justifiable incension over the dominance of MtoF being the 'default' transgender trope.
"It's just not as big a deal for women" is horseshit.
It's still just all male identity politics.

Gratitude that RM didn't succeed at building the Battery Park bridge.

Adulthood as avoiding entering a book store because I have a literal stack of prior commitments waiting for me at home.

Bad habits of following the bike path, even while meanderingly afoot.

Jul 13, 2015

tfw

you're about to unfollow everyone

you realize that you're taking the next train that comes

the sunset is over

the last chord is played, the tension is resolved, and it's the most beautiful C major chord you've ever heard

your regrets count comes up empty for the first time. ever.

the imposter retires. permanently.

-----

in the past six months I've discovered two amazing artists. O'Keefe and Callas. Two modern beautiful women with amazing talent and creative genius.

I found O'Keefe through a New Yorker article, back in December. Her book "Georgia O'Keefe : Art and Letters" was mentioned obliquely in a review for another book. I bought it on the spot for no reason other than the sheer fact that I could.

Her paintings are the work of a master artist. They're stunningly contemporary. Her mastery of color and gradients, emphasis and exploration of the boundary between light and shadow : unrivaled. The sinuous fold of her forms and attention to color are breathtaking and intimate - I spent hours pouring over all the brilliant photos of her work. A woman who put her thoughts on paper.

Maria Callas I discovered today. By the time I listened to her rendition of 'pres de ramparts' from Bizet's Carmen, it was the third or fourth that I'd heard.

Hers was perfect. Light, flirty, full throated sound with a dark and honest chest voice and the clearest most resonant high notes. It sounded effortless, like speaking. Her voice trembles with energy and liquid, just, pure perfect, personal, sound.

Dusk

Music made by other people. Especially if that music involves a guitar, and some Spaniards

The golden glow of windows, intensifying the deepening shadows.

The green, supple, grass of a north eastern summer.

Your voice (voi ici) on the answering machine, that many many years ago, warm and dancing.

Fireflies in the depths of tree shadows.

Words flowing through the brain, fluid and faint and deepening as the change in colors washing across the sky, high atop the shadows of tree tops.

Fade, to black.

Jul 11, 2015

Revolvr : Revolve :: Resolvr : Resolve

Our lives revolved around yours, I realize now. I wonder, now, years distant from it, if you were the only person who noticed.  In some way, you were the gravity of the nucleus, that thing that held us all together.

Still holds us all.

We didn't know it at the time, but I see now, later, how the potentiality that we vested in you weighed down your own soul the heaviest.

If I could give you one thing it would be the reassurance that I have not forgotten you but that you are not the central point, not for me, not any longer.  If there is any freedom in that, it is yours. What ever consolation that is, it's less than you deserve.


....


Speaking to my mother on the phone a few weeks (days?) ago, she asked me again what I did.  For a living.  What is it, she asked, what is it that you do for that company that you're working for?

How do you not know.  How.  How.  How.

The Lord, he knows.  He knows I tried. And Lord, he *knows* _how_ I tried.

Lord, I tried.


...


Living in the shadows comes easy to those who have been granted free passage amongst them.

Jul 5, 2015

Fording the Code Gap

Fuck it, Ford. You were supposed to deflate the 10x programmer mythology.  Not prop it up on some sort of "yes, but not for you" conjectiture.

The irony of hubris is that if you tell a person who believes firmly in their own exceptionality that there does in fact exist such a thing as a 10x programmer (they *don't* exist) and then go on to cheekily explain why said exceptional person cannot find and recruit them. Well yes, some portion of your reading population will take your point. The minority that doesn't will see 10x-ers under every rock, nook, and hackathon winners podium.

And. Worse of all, rather than letting this terrible mythology of rock star programming code slingers and problem solvers die the ignoble death of obscurity, you've prolonged and bolstered the idea that these people, no, deities, exist.

10x programmers do not exist. There are great, smart, wonderful coders that are marvelously productive. But thats a productivity that comes from practice. From studying. From domain knowledge.

No programmer's productivity exists in a vacuum. Programmers are often embedded within existing structures: languages, libraries, preexisting conditions called legacy code: ie everything that was written either before you arrived or before the new hotness of a JavaScript framework that you're currently using was introduced to the project. Legacy code, often times, is the code that you wrote last week.

10x-ers don't exist. Instead I'd posit that what you're looking for is harder to find, but far less tangible. Chances are your organization has some already : they're called senior engineers.

Are we?

She sat there, on the other side of the table, her languid green eyes focused on some drifting piece of daydream, just past my left ear.

"Friends?" I repeated.

"Yeah" she said "do you ever get the feeling that you don't really even know what a friend is?"

I stared back at her, a bit dumb founded.  Here was one of the most gregarious, friendly and befriended people that I knew.  She was popular by every account - had friends on both coasts, and at least two other continents.

"I mean, I just don't think that I get it sometimes", she continued.

Suddenly, inexplicably, I felt angry.  "Aren't we friends?" I asked, trying not to let my sudden emotions show.

Her eyes blurred out and then focused with a start, as if she was waking from a dream.

"Are we?" she replied.


'Are we?  Are we?'

I realized I didn't know.  Maybe I had never known.

I looked down. Quietly finished off my beer with a quick swallow, and,
without another glance in her direction,
got up and left.


Are we?

sound reflecions: observations from SF MOMA's Soundtracks exhibit

karthik and i went to the SF MOMA today to check out the last few bits of the soundtracks exhibit. we saw this great video work that i can&...