A MIND FOREVER VOYAGING THROUGH STRANGE SEAS OF THOUGHT, ALONE


This is my second blog.

My first blog chronicled my experiences over three years caring for my dad as he lived through and finally died from Alzheimer's. That is the book that is for sale.

This second blog kind of chronicles of life, what it is like to start your life over in your late 50's. After caretaking, you are damaged, file bankruptcy, and the world doesn't care what you did. After 8 months of unemployment, you wake each day knowing the world doesn't want you. Finally you do find a job, 5 weeks before homelessness, but doing what you did 30 years ago and getting paid what you did 30 years ago. So this is starting over.



The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

YOUR OWN GRACE PARK?

Neat, laptop is working, battery won't charge any longer, but now seems to be up and running  as long as I keep it plugged in.  So, away we go on what's been on my mind.

I've been rewatching Battlestar Galactica recently.  It's a pretty good show, until season three and early four when it turns into a soap opera like All My Cylons or One Battlestar to Live, then at the end it picks up and has a pretty cool ending.

But the point of the deep philosophical question is, when is a human a machine? In the series, the cylons look human and several humans have relationships with them.  Hey, if I met a cylon looking like Grace Park, I'd certainly be willing.

But it does bring up a question in our buddying future of when a human becomes a machine.  Did the first peg leg or hook cause pastors in the pulpit to warn of transhumanism?  Does the possibility of bionic legs mean soldiers from these wars should not take advantage of them?

What else we see is the manipulation of genes, it's easy in a philosophical debate to think it's evil, but when your little child has a disease that will kill them, and doctors tell you this little gene manipulation thing will save the life of your child, can you say no?

So the question is when is a human a toaster?  Oh, wait, sensitivity training.  If rumors are true that the military is experimenting making super soldiers, will levels of strength and other attributes, do we view them as humans or machines?

In the show, the difference is when cylons die, their body dies but their 'memories' are uploaded into new identical bodies; but they live, breath, eat, bleed, etc.  Can't tell a human from a cylon in the lab or medical table.

So what is human?  Today we have people walking around with artificial hearts, pig livers, artificial knees, hips, elbows shoulders, vertibrate, skull, etc.  Can a skeletal structure be completely artificial and a person be human?  How many organs from other creatures can a human possess before they aren't human?

Can you combine DNA from a lion and a man and still be a man?

They say by 2050 robots will be nearly human, will they have rights?  All these questions have been asked many times in science fiction, but never really answered in life.  What makes 'life'?  Many years ago, the soul was the deciding factor, but most of the world doesn't believe in the soul anymore, so that argument will just get you in politically correct court.

Would correcting your DNA allowing you to live longer be a bad thing?  I think so, I mean, if someone came up and said drink this and you can live 500 years, my first thought would be, you mean I have to work another 450 some years?  No thanks.  And how would society deal with people living to 500?  Imagine the population demographics - you think SS and MED are in trouble now?

Point of all of this is we race forward with technology, never asking should we, figuring if we don't, someone else will, so we end up with asking afterwards if we should have done this.

Think of the cell phone.  When they first came out, most of us thought what a great idea, you break down in car and can call for help, you can call your teenager to find out where they are, that sort of thing.  But what we soon found was when you leave the office, you don't really leave the office, you now are available 24 hours a day.  Add texting and email and you have millions every night who wake up in the middle of the night and check email, texts, etc.

And what of implants?  Technically, 666'ers, you have to worship the beast when you get the implant or tattoo, so as long as you don't worship the beast, are the implants bad?  They certainly could be when Google is figuring out how to control our thoughts and behaviors - apply electrical energy to certain parts of the brain to reduce belief in God or support unlimited immigration.

When we start manipulating humanity, when we start creating robots with real human skin, when we create a version of human superior to 'normal', what do you suppose is going to happen?

And what happens when human companionship can be purchased in a humanoid machine, totally lifelike and does everything humans do but is programed not to argue with you, will humans even interact with each other?

My own Grace Park.


I've got a secret, I've been hiding under my skin
My heart is human, my blood is boiling
My brain I.B.M., so if you see me
Acting strangely, don't be surprised

I'm just a man who needed someone
And somewhere to hide
To keep me alive, just keep me alive
Somewhere to hide to keep me alive

I'm not a robot without emotions
I'm not what you see
I've come to help you
With your problems, so we can be free
I'm not a hero, I'm not a saviour
Forget what you know

I'm just a man whose circumstances
Went beyond his control
Beyond my control, we all need control
I need control, we all need control

I am the modren man
(Secret, secret I've got a secret)
Who hides behind a mask
(Secret, secret, I've got a secret)
So no one else can see
(Secret, secret, I've got a secret)
My true identity

Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto
Domo, Domo
Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto




Friday, October 30, 2015

I HATE BLIND OBEDIANCE TO RULES

Well, things are interesting of late.  Got myself in some hot water at work.  Told a joke in chat about going out to dinner with my girlfriend the other night and people in the restaurant were giving us dirty looks and calling me all sorts of bad names, like perv and pedo.   Look, I know there is a difference in our ages, I'm 57 and she is 23, but I thought they were being really rude.  My girlfriend was very  upset, totally ruined our 10th anniversary.

Are you laughing?  I thought the joke was funny as hell when someone sent it to me, but apparently not everyone did and it couldn't have come at a worst time.

In August, we got ourselves a new person who monitors certain types of calls we get that are very important - can't say too much here.  We have certain things we have to do, certain questions that need to be answered.

I had not had a violation since my first week after promotion.  Eleven months without a violation.  I've had a dozen in three months and it's putting my job in jeapordy.

Now, most people if the customer answered a question in their explanation that was okay, or you could combine similar things in one sentence like 'was the monster breathing fire, smoke, or sparks' instead of asking it three times for each.  Not this young lady, she is out to impress her boss and I swear if you drop the 'g' in anything, you get a violation.

I am a nervous wreck, I can't sleep at night, my stomach has been acting up, and I went to the doctor today and found out all this itching I'm doing might be in my head.  Can you believe it, this young gal and my manager have managed to do what four years of caretaking someone with Alzheimer's couldn't do and make me neurotic mess.

There is no way to change managers, no way to get promoted now for a while and I suspect even if I do every damn call to the letter, they are still going to find a way to get me - I notice they never play the calls back for me to hear and a couple of them I seriously questioned making a mistake.  I'd record them myself to prove my innocence, but that would get me fired too.

All I need to do is survive to Feb and I'll have 5k in savings and then if they want to dump me I can ride for 3 months till I find another job. Jeepers.

Sucks to be a working man again.

Having a difficult time finding a place to copy and paste music properly from an ipad, so until further notice, no lyrics, hope that is not the only reason you read my blog.  Tried to get Glenn Frye's Working Man here but after 20 minutes gave up.





Monday, October 19, 2015

SOMETHING WEIRD ABOUT 1960'S SONGS

Did you ever notice that there were a bunch of songs in the  1960's that seemed to promote pedophilia?

I was lisitening to the Monkees today, and Swet Young Thing

I know that something very strange has happened to my brain
I'm either feeling very good or else I am insane
The seeds of doubt you planed, have started to grow wild
And I feel that I must yield before the wisdom of achild
And it's love you bring of that I can't deny
Spred your wings and I can learn to fly
Sweet young thing

Now, by itself, you can interpret that several ways and maybe interpretting it thru the eyes of today is wrong and we should consider the times and the source.

Then again, The Osmands sang Go Away Littlle Girl which because a 12 year old is sining it makes it okay, but still, kind of creepy.  The again, maybe Donny was thinking about Maria and not wanting her to become a singer, no wait, the sweet lips thing wrecks that unless there was more going on in Utah than anyone imagined.

But the big tune was from Gary Puckett

Young Girl, get out of my mind, my love for you is way out of line

I mean, what else can the mean.

It was a strange decade.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

PROCESSES AND OUTCOMES

Something has been bouncing around inside my head of late and tonight when watching Season 3  of DCI Banks, it took shape.  In the story, police burst into a home after a gun - England don't you know,   and a guy gets tasered  in the chest and has a heart attack.  The investigation into the tasing is all about discovering who didn't properly follow a process.

And that hit the nail on the head.

I don't talk about work much nor where I work, but this is something that has bothered me greatly of late - this total obsession with process.

Hypothetically, of course, let us say a company spends a few hundred K to a consulting company that recommends that a conversation should begin with a four step process.  More money is spent rolling it out - all designed to make happier customers who fill out happy surveys.

So, what is the goal - happy surveys and happy customers.  And the company is so into this that they dedicate employees to listen to every call to grade employees on how they do the four wonder steps.

Now picture an employee who routinely, month after month, gets over 2.5 times the number of surveys as the group mean and over 90% are happy - in fact , has gone three months without an unhappy one.  But this employee has a small issue, he can't remember to do those four steps if his life depended on it.  The results are there, the process is not.

So what do you do with this person?  Ignore it because the results are being achieved?  Nope, because today the process is king - it rules.  And do you know why?

It absolves the individual of responsibility.  "Hey, I followed the process, the process we were told would guarantee results, not my fault!"  If you succeed without following the process, one day you fail and it will be because you did not follow the process - but not just you, your manager gets questioned, that managers manager and so up the line it goes.  The fact the failure would have occurred whether the process was followed or not is irrelevant.

Think about it.  Think to the last time at work the royal crap hit the fan, what do they look for? The person who didn't follow the process steps to the letter.

Herein lies the problem - the assumption that a single process fits all situations.  Problem two is actual root cause analysis is never done as to what actually caused the failure, guaranteeing a future repetition.

This all stems from Fredrick Taylor's time motion studies in manufacturing and the nearly 100 year attempt to apply it to every human job.  What started in the plant has blossomed to every human endeavor possible.  That every job can be broken down to a step by step process that repeated over and over will produce identical results.

Jobs become menial repetitions repeated over and over, the results come secondary to following the process, and people see their individuality disappearing, their uniqueness blended to match the process and tension builds, the desire to just one day damn the process and color outside the lines and laugh and giggle.

Is it a wonder so many people medicate?

We can see the results daily, an issue that falls outside the process guidelines and what happens?  No
one knows what to do, no one can make a decision. You can see the solution is to simply do X but X option does not appear anywhere in the process so it won't get done.

This ties to the subject of zero tolerance, the application of rules and processes regardless.  Well, unless you are the elite type of course.

Something's wrong in this house today
While the master was riding the servants decided to play
Something's wrong in this house today
Something's been going on, there may be a price to pay
There's evil brewing, getting out of control
And I'm helpless, I can't put it right
Something unrighteous is possessing my soul
And it's cold in the heat of the night
Something's wrong in this house today
While the sorcerer slept the apprentice decided to play
While the master was hiding the servants decided to play
Might be too much sun or too much of something in the air
Whatever's happening nobody else is aware
There's evil brewing, getting out of control
And I'm helpless, I can't put it right
Something unrighteous is possessing my soul
And it's cold in the heat of the night
Something's wrong in this house today
Something's been going on, there may be a price to pay


Alan Parsons


Monday, October 5, 2015

TWO FORKS

I only have two forks now.  I have no idea what happened to the third fork.  There are 3 table spoons and one teaspoon - or visa versa - I am not sure which is which.  Three butter knives.

These use to be a complete set of eight; a set that survived 30 years.  Now it slowly disappears.  I obviously don't host many dinner parties.

The years I took care of my dad, the moves, the great sell off of anything and everything I could and now  18 months since I rejoined the human race, I keep running into moments where I can't remember what happened to bowls dishes, or kitchen stuff.

I know, just go buy more, but three forks was great, it fit perfectly making sure I don't need to do dishes every day, but do have to do them every other day.  Give me eight and the sink will start piling up past the window sill.

Watched more JFK stuff today.  LBJ really had his butt saved when Kennedy died.  He was about to be indicted for serious corruption.  But instead he became prez, investigation dropped and before they buried Kennedy, he overturned the order printing the silver backed dollars and cancelled the plan to pull out of Vietnam,giving the bankers what they want and the military their war, and Wall Street their chance for billions and all it cost us was one president.

Oh, and 50,000 some young men, but they were mostly poor, not like there would be jobs for them much longer anyhow.

I can't wait till Friday when I can order a damn keyboard for this mini.

Did you know Kennedy's driver, 51 year old agent, died of a heart attack 6weeks prior to the big day?  No toxicology done.

You should really watch the TV coverage of that day.  The witnesses who saw the other shooters, the press conference with Parkland doctors describing the entrance wound on the front of the throat and the head.  Or the parking lot pictures of the bullet mark on the front windshield frame.

I am not sure why I am so fascinated by this story.  I don't idolize JFK, good prez, not much of a husband and another privileged rich kid from another privileged family.

But how the hell could George Herbert Walker Bush not remember where he was when he heard Kennedy was shot?????

So,joined a health club in May, get ringworm and a second fungal infection in June, spend two months trying over the counter stuff then finally go to the doctor who prescribed just enough medicine to get rid of 99% of the problem.  So now it has all come back and the doc won't renew the script without another visit.

But I found something that seems to be working - bleach.  Yep, apparently bleach is quite effective in killing fungal infections.

It is also quite painful -not too bad when you apply it, the real pain starts about 30 seconds later, when the real stinging starts.  But it usually stops after about 30 minutes of feeling like 1,000 killer bees are attacking over and over.

I hate doctors.


Truth at Last

Does a man ever give up hope, I wonder, --
Face the grim fact, seeing it clear as day?
When Bennen saw the snow slip, heard its thunder
Low, louder, roaring round him, felt the speed
Grow swifter as the avalanche hurled downward,
Did he for just one heart-throb -- did he indeed
Know with all certainty, as they swept onward,
There was the end, where the crag dropped away?
Or did he think, even till they plunged and fell,
Some miracle would stop them? Nay, they tell
That he turned round, face forward, calm and pale,
Stretching his arms out toward his native vale
As if in mute, unspeakable farewell,
And so went down. -- 'T is something, if at last,
Though only for a flash, a man may see
Clear-eyed the future as he sees the past,
From doubt, or fear, or hope's illusion free.


Saturday, October 3, 2015

I THNK NOT, THEREFORE I WRITE NOT

One of my rare moments of introspection of late, I was thinking, 'why don't I write more and why when I do why I sn't it as deep as it use to be'?

Then I realized, I don't think anymore.  I don't just lay back, staring at the clouds going by, or the ceiling fan spin around and around, and just think.  Nor have I been reading much of things that would make me think; I mean the Louise Penny books I recently finished were great, but not something that kept me up at night thinking.

I miss thinking deep thoughts and working them out in my head and then on paper, well, recycled web pages.

Oh and my ten year old MacBook officially is dead, so this is being typed two finger method on my iPad mini so excuse the typos.

I'm tired of regurgitating the news, another blog pointing out the economy sucks, that 48% of the people working age in this country aren't - dat right folks - 95 mil not, 151 mil are.  And what can I possibly say that my imaginary readers don't already know?

In the end, we are like most of the people throughout history, little anonymous peons who go about their lives interrupted by the megalomaniac men and women who can't run their own lives but think they know what is best for everyone else.

I don't know what bugs me worse, Bill Clinton riding on those private jets to an island screwing underage girls or Denny Hasertt buggering young boys all those years,  these are our leaders, perverted people who make millions, spend billions of other people's money, screw the peons into the ground and their kids in the rear.

It is fun making fun of the Moores and Hodges' of the world but frankly I can't listen to them anymore so it's hard to comment on them.  I wonder how they explained away Jade Helm and what new end of the world buy our stuff campaign they are on now.

Mixed feelings on the Cubs- might be cool in my lifetime to see them in the World Series- not to mention the film of Chicago burning.

My thumbs are tired, I do appreciate the few remaining imaginary readers sticking with me during this down period.


You now hunger
Feeding your mind with selfishness
You now wander
Aimlessly around your consciousness

And your prophecies fail
And your thoughts become weak
The silence creates necessity
And you're clothing yourself
In the shields of despair
Your courage now impaired

Why can't you listen?
Why can't you hear?
Why can't you listen
As love screams everywhere?

You crucify all honesty
No signs you see do you believe
And all your words just twist and turn
Reviving just to crash and burn
You're fighting till the bitter end
If only your heart could open up and listen


Collective Soul