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jjohn (22)

jjohn
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Perl hack/Linux buff/OSS junkie.

Journal of jjohn (22)

Friday June 21, 2002
10:14 AM

What am I listening to?

[ #5838 ]

On this summer solstice day, sunny and humid in Boston, my mind increasingly slips in vacation mode -- that special frame of reference where it's OK to rock out to Guns 'n' Roses, Rocky Horror Picture Show, Queen and the Monkeys all day long. Lyle Lovett's Joshua Judges Ruth album, with it's southern gospel overtones, plays particularly well on a day like this.

Yesterday while hanging out at Designs for Living I came across the infamous John Bly cure-all immasculated men, Iron John. Having just read Elizabeth Wurtzel's Bitch, I thought I'd get a different perspective. Instead, Bly comes off like a college stoner who has read far too much Jung and Campbell. Taking the old folk tale of Iron John (in which eponymous wild man is dredged up from a lake, imprisoned by the King and freed by the Prince), Bly opinion-barfs about "weak men" who need to get down with their bad wild-man selves. Although I do enjoy much of Jung's philosophy, it can easily be misused by those with an ax to grind (see Germamy circa 1929-1945). Like religious fundamentalists of all creeds, Bly seeks salvation in the soft-focus lens of the past in which we were better than we are now. This kind of nihilism bores me. I've heard it expressed by many people in many forms (e.g. "things were so much better in the past") that I'm considering using personal violence as a means to wake those sad people. Life isn't a rehersal. If you aren't happy with it, change it. Easier said than done? Of course, but the alternative (not doing anything) is appalling.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to my train ride to St. Louis and YAPC that begins monday. The trip will take about 2 days. Perhaps I can shoot Bison from the train like passengers did in the late nineteenth century. Fetch my pith helmet and quinine, Jeeves! Adventure awaits!

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  • I've heard it expressed by many people in many forms (e.g. "things were so much better in the past") that I'm considering using personal violence as a means to wake those sad people.

    People never used to get so upset and threatening in the old days.
    • People never used to get so upset and threatening in the old days.

      You know, now that you mention it, you're right. People were so much more neighborly and considerate when I was growing up. I remember playing stick ball in Old Man Wither's yard while Aunt Ethel made her famous pink lemonade. People were good to each other in those days, you know?

      Oh wait -- I'm thinking of the Waltons again! Man, that metal plate in my head really does funny things to my memory!

      • Metal head-plates never used to cause such problems. They ain't makin' 'em like they used to, I guess...
        --

        ------------------------------
        You are what you think.
      • Yeah, well, chivalry is dead too honey, go build that campfire and start beating that drum :) Get in touch with that inner savage but don't forget to take out the garbage. LOL. Admirable that you could make it through the entire book , but you just have to come by the house boy so I can set you up with a little more worthwhile reading :)

        Oh, and you will want a camera for your arrival at the St Louis "AmShack". Yes, I won't spoil it for you but it is a Kodak moment for the non-natives :)

        • Admirable that you could make it through the entire book

          Whoa! Put away that Jump to Conclusions Mat (tm)! I only read the introduction. Like dropping a hammer on a planet with Earth-normal gravity, I knew what would follow (hi Spock!).

          In an unrelated note, I wonder how much more my neighbor is going to vomit. Every morning and evening, I'm treated to the dulcet strains of regurgitation. Lucky me.

      • In many cases, it's true: people did used to be nicer, more courteous, etc. Life was simpler, we had less stress, and smelled the roses more. We also had shorter lives and lynched colored folk, and hardcore porn was scarce. Every step forward is a step back!