Wednesday, July 27, 2005

missed you, too

Okay, so I've been away. Had a short contract job and didn't have time or frame of mind to write. Damn, I missed this blogsport.

Before I jump right into the jumbled pile of stored thoughts, I am happy to announce that I've just accepted a job with the Chronicle's online department as a web designer. I am relieved and excited and relieved. Contract work has been slow and disappointing these past six months. I am looking forward to working at a company that:

  • is not tied (at least not directly) to the oil & gas bi'ness,
  • pays me regularly, and
  • is located downtown.
Hair shirts
I'm fascinated by the concept of hair shirts. Or any of the methods of self-mortification that characterize the righteous and the insane. Hair shirts are such a great metaphorical tool. Like when a friend is over-apologizing for some minor infraction and you can tell them to spare you the groveling and just put on a hair shirt.
    hair shirt n.
    A coarse haircloth garment worn next to the skin by religious ascetics as penance.
For my tardiness in keeping up this blog, I've been wearing a hairshirt. Well, a summer-weight hairshirt.

The good old days
This from Michael Chabon The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay:
    "One of the sturdiest precepts of the study of human delusion is that every golden age is either just past or in the offing."
Isn't that the damn truth?

We are always, it seems, too close to our own lives/times to clearly evaluate them. My pet peeve is the doomsday type who insists that people have never been so evil or violent as they are today. It's rather arrogant and myopic to make such comments—like we're so cutting edge now. Makes the survivors of past genocides out to be, I don't know, runner's up in the pageant of human cruelty, doesn't it? Sort of disrespects their nightmare. Seems to me we've adequately shown throughout history that we can be appallingly, consistently inhumane. Modern man is embarrassingly not unique.

Same is true for the positive clich├ęs. So many people think of their childhoods or their grandparents' time as the golden times—replete with sparkling dewdrops and saturated colors—and the present as a gritty, thin, crumbling residue.

By the way, Kavalier & Clay was great. Unexpected twists and difficult passages but ultimately satisfying

1 comment:

bobs other half said...

woohoo, bob told me when he got home this evening. im guessing you will be working with oliver? when you see him tell him his mother is still alive and doing well. damn kids, you give em your life and a college education and they go off and forget your phone number and address!