Monthly Archives: August 2002

The Story Changes – A Few Words Aren’t Enough

Yesterday I posted my story in five words or less, or attempted to at least.

Shelley’s keeping track of others doing the same. And it’s forming a song!

In anycase, it doesn’t seem right (no – not the song – the song is perfect). A few words aren’t enough (hey that’s five words too!). I do have a singular mission statement. A code I try and live by. But that’s not the same.

To summarize the story of my entire life as a five word phrase… I realize it’s an effort that people should try, but guess what? I think my story has changed based upon the hands I’ve been delt in life – and believe me – every hand I’ve played has led to a new story.

Maybe I shouldn’t use the poker metaphor – I stink at cards.

There maybe archtypes that I might subconsciously try and fit myself into. Yes I bet there are. Archtypes… what’s your archtype?

Joseph Campbell’s “The Hero with a Thousand Faces” came to mind when I posted what I did previously and I should have mentioned it.

If there is one story that we maybe following – unintentionally, but unavoidably – maybe it *is* the monomyth (also called The Hero’s Journey). Maybe. I think. Read the book. You decide.

  • The Hero’s Journey – A Summary – A short summary of the steps in The Hero’s Journey.

  • the hero’s journey – An environment to explore the classic mythical story structure and to create your own stories. this looks pretty cool! You writers out there wanna check this out! (hint, hint, hint)

  • The Monomyth – Reference at UC Berkely.

  • National Catholic Reporter – The hero is us – Great article considering that many Catholics believe that Campbell promoted a sort of universal religion.

    That leads to a frightening thought… what phase of the journey am I on? This time?

  • Never tell me the odds

    I have a job that I love. I have friends who care about me, and whom I care about. I have a fiancee whom I love, and who loves me. We will be married next May, and we have enough money that we can afford to have both the wedding and honeymoon we want. I have parents with whom I am on such good terms that they will be retiring early and moving near me so they can be a more integrated part of the next phase of my life. I have been sober for almost three years.

    I am blessed.

    That’s Mark rising to the challenge of Michael Barrish: “we each have a story, often unknown to us, that we try all our lives to prove true. … It can usually be summarized in five words or less.?

    So here goes mine….

    I never thought I’d turn 30, and yes – I’m very happy for it :) I’ve achieved such kid daydreams as stepping up on a stage and playing my own music for folks and having them enjoy it. Having a job I love, in an industry that is constantly new. Buying a house with my own down payment. With money that I earned from a career that was built on my own terms. Making it to the middle class. Not having to sleep with a can of industrial strenght roach spray anymore. Central air. Wow! Being married not only to a person I love, but to the one. The soulmate I can imagine sitting on rocking chairs with, talking about grandchildren someday, being the old cute couple that embarrases everyone around them :) Quitting smokes not once – but twice (now final!). Having the greatest brother in the world and the best extended family anyone can have. Meeting and learning from numerous mentors across the years. And having some of the best friends I can imagine, who I should hang out more with (you know who you are – yes I am an asshole).

    I am blessed too. Statistically – none of it should have happened.

    Katie’s mom was telling me the other day… “you two sure have come a long way from Kensington havn’t you?” And that cuts to the quick on my story.

    “Never tell me the odds.”

    (bonus points if you know where I first heard it said)

    The Left has lost its way and lost its voice

    I normally discount pronouncements like that. But this one is from Camille Paglia:

    The most radical task facing contemporary leftism is a purgation and reclamation of its own rhetoric.

    Then again Meryl had this to say about Paglia recently (and made me smile at the thought…):

    Paglia’s nuts, if you ask me. Actually, she’s such a type-A that I think if you ever got her and Ann Coulter on the same stage, they’d explode. Oooh….

    Oh man, I just love that quote :)

    Anyway, I have a lot of left and right leaning readers. Would be curious for your thoughts. Me? I just thought it was interesting to read.

    I have to document THAT?

    For many Java facilities, including most open-source packages and most internally developed components, the reality is that very few class libraries or components come with any significant documentation besides the Javadoc. This means that developers will be learning to use facilities from the Javadoc, and we should consider organizing our Javadoc around this reality. I’ve often joked that one of the most important skills for a Java programmer today is the skillful use of Google and Javadoc to reverse-engineer poorly documented APIs. It may be true, but it’s not really very funny.

    Read the rest in this develperWorks article. via codaland.

    Debunking Lomborg and other things

    Garret is having a great weblog conversation on just how *off* Lomborg’s The Environmentalists Are Wrong is.

    it’s just that i’m surprised that so many are buying what this individual is selling, without using their baloney detection kit. or, at least spending a minute or two on google.

    I posted my take to Garret’s discussion – Even if the Lomborg’s right with his facts (and like others I seriously doubt it – but who am I to argue? :))… He’s saying the monentary value of adjusting to the climate change is cheaper then preventing it in the first place. So his conclusion is that we should adjust instead of prevent. That’s bullshit. His whole argument is that we should take the route of least resistance. Just because something is easier doesn’t make it right. Just because something is cheaper doesn’t make it right.

    I’d argue we need to do both. Help countries with fighting poverty *and* invest in technologies and practices to sustain and improve the environment. With America leading the way by actions and not words. Those actions can happen at a local level. At a personal level.

    A great point Garret made,

    “the market is driving a push to sustainability, because of pollution in urban areas – *not* the environmental movement. sustainability and development are local, regional issues too … not just linked to global warming.

    Now read this Yahoo! news story on a report issued by the Natural Resources Defense Council, American Rivers, and Smart Growth America.

    Suburban strip malls, office buildings and other paved areas have worsened the drought covering half the United States by blocking billions of gallons of rainwater from seeping through the soil to replenish ground water, environmental groups said on Wednesday.

    Atlanta loses enough water to supply the average household needs of up to 3.6 million people a year, the report said.

    The Boston area was next with between 44 billion and 103 billion gallons of water lost. Next came Philadelphia with 25 billion to 59 billion gallons of water unable to return to the soil, the report said.

    “Sprawl development is literally sending billions of gallons of badly needed water down the drain each year — the storm drain,” said Betsy Otto, senior director for watershed programs at American Rivers.

    “Sprawl hasn’t caused this year’s drought, but sprawl is making water supply problems worse in many cities,” she said..

    Confirms Garret’s point doesn’t it?

    Mike starts with attacking the sinner and not the sin, but ends up making some great points once past that. I wonder if our notion of poverty is cultural? If not then I have to disagree with this,

    “Only when people are rich enough to feed themselves do they begin to think about the effect of their actions on the world around them and on future generations.” Yeah, Bjorn. We have seen that happen in Europe and North America. It is indeed as you say. What do you do all your life? Watch the fiords freeze over? Eat LSD with your cornflakes? That has to be the dumbest statement anyone arguing a point such as yours could put forward.

    I come from a ‘disadvantaged’ background, and from my perspective, on this point, Bjorn is positively right. When you can’t feed yourself – all you think about is your next meal. I return to my point above. Fight poverty and lead by example on environmental issues. That’s IMHO.

    Wanna see a perfect idea for protest on a very local level?. I love it!

    Alwin nails why I have issues with IndyMedia,

    I think that Portland Indymedia is doing an important job. I realize that Indymedia sites have an agenda, and it’s pretty plain what it is. I just think it would carry more weight if it was written with more attention to the facts.

    I hear the outrage in the voice, can even empathize with it- but it’s place is in a more personal space (like a weblog) not in something purporting to be “Independent media.” Independent means not taking sides (emphasis added by Karl). Doesn’t it? Or have we changed the meaning of the word?

    Alwin – I’ve been wondering who are the contributers to IndyMedia for a while. For such an ‘independent’ forum, they sure are biased in one particular direction. They are the leftist O’Reilly Report. Where are those that just want to report the truth and not their editorial opinion?