Hate & Resignation

It is only out of ignorance that people are cruel, because they really don’t think it will come back. ~ Maya Angelou

This quote, is extremely fitting to this tale. Recently, I saw an indirect, independent action that could be seen as a return of karmic justice, not because I was particularly cruel, but because I was ignorant at a prior time. For many of Friendfeed’s more active English speakers, they may remember the racial slur topic, which cost the service some of it’s best intellectuals. Sadly, I must say that I was one of the “very few” people who kept stoking the fire, long past the point of which it should have been ash; I stoked that fire, and the results of the blaze is some people were singed, but a few were charred.

Do I have regrets for being involved? Absolutely.
Do I think I had reason for being involved? To a point, but I stepped far past what that was.
Was I cognizant of all the rammifications as I made my decisions? No, and I will admit many of those remarks were made in defense, though an unreightous defense, to what  I though were attacks to  my and others credibility.

One thing that I did not completely understand, though I thought I did, was the power of words. I bore that if they were used in good fun and jest, that they shouldn’t have such intensity, the ability to cause pain. Well all that changed last weekend, when I felt attacked directly, by words that I was likely not to see, but happened upon them anyways.

These words may not have been directed upon me, but they were forged from an intense hatred, and were likely set off by something I said haphazardly and in a way mocking my own ignorance. These words not only included that of hatred, but those of compassion, which seemed very cold and insincere when they were breached, and sarcastic thoughts of violence. I can now say that I was, or at least feel as though I was, on the recieving end of a racial hate crime, even if it was only words, from thousands of miles away.

I can also say that to say that you understand, to say that you have compassion, after supporting or standing up for any form of bigotry, even if it was only words spoke in jest, will be called into question. You should not fight when this question is raised, because you, too, are part of the problem. You will stand along side me; you will wait until that suffering returns, to show you its effects. We all need to remember that there is a line, but we must also realize that what lies on either side is the same.

Sadly, it is with this that I have also chosen to step away from friends, all of whom I’ve shared great moments with, and who will share great moments without me. I may stop to observe how they are doing, but my interaction, has caused quite huge losses, not just for myself, but for them as well. I feel now it is better for me to resign, as a member of FF, of course I still reserve a position to be involved with the argumenting about domo’s and the “fat kid.”

To Give Up A Dream

After a week of no programming or coding of any sort, I’ve realized I’m no longer interested. This makes me a bit sad, and makes me question the past decade. The idea of being a programmer was my dream from a young age, and now I’m realizing it depresses me. Giving it up feels like a betrayal, but at the same time I feel as though a  weight is being lifted from me.

I can now focus on what I love, but I don’t know what that is. I’ve been through many phases and experiences over the last 5 years. In high-school, I focused on drafting(architectural & mechanical), engineering fundamentals, basic number theory, and economic theory. For my short period of college, I focused on philosophy, biology, and computer science. Since then, I’ve focused on systems, business, and customer service areas. Through out, I’ve done simple design work for friends.

My problem is I now get to choose where I want to go and I have rubbed such broad stokes of things that I enjoy that doing that is hard. Luckily, I have three things going for me, my age, knowing the areas I enjoy, and having a very simple set of needs.

To give up one dream, I am opening myself up to the many others that lie before me. I’m re-writing my life from this point, with a new perspective, and a new passion. This is a path less taken, I’m choosing to give up to move forward and find a happier medium, a happier me.

How To Overcome Crushing Blows

The past few months have been like a riptide for me, every time I pop back above the surface I’m further out, and getting pushed right back under. I’ve lost friends, I’ve somehow managed to walk away from death, and I’ve lost my job. The thing is in life those things matter, but they happened in the past, they will effect how I act in the future, but I shouldn’t have to wait for these to occur to figure out I needed to change.
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The Preciousness Of Time

*Rough post and unlikely to be modified do to the time, and realizing I don’t have the answer. This is a set of recent realizations, some personal, in their rough form, take of it what you will.

Time is itself immutable, and, yet, it is the essence of all mutability

Last week, I spent time with family after the loss of my cousin. Over the week I spent time with relatives and family friends talking about memories and all the time we have sacrificed without a second thought. One of the conversations was with my aunt, about my relationship to my estranged father and how there isn’t much time left. I’m still not sure what I’m doing with my life, but this past week has been a wake up call, I need to get rid of all the hindrances in it that are wasting time.

Time is the stitching that holds billions of scattered, unconnected, snapshots together to create the ever rippling fabric of life.

The single reason for wasting time, accidents and traffic not withstanding, is our throwing mental barriers up to avoid certain situations or people. I noticed this after talking with my aunt about my dad. The only reason I’m estranged from him is because of my half-siblings, his wife, and the way she treats him. I can’t stand them so I avoid them, along with him, unfortunately, I care about him and know all to well the this recent funeral could have easily been his. I’ve seen him maybe two hours in total since New Year ’08 and that’s not enough time to spend with someone you care about, no matter how you feel about them or the people they surround themselves with. I still haven’t figured out what I’m going to do to repair this situation, but I don’t have much time because noone expects another 5 years out of him.

“Truly successful decision making relies on a balance between deliberate and instinctive thinking.” ~ Malcolm Gladwell

I notice myself being less and less reliable on listening to my instinct and find my self deliberating on things far to much. I think we all need a good kick in the ass to get us to realize we don’t have time to waste analyzing all the data, it just takes to long. We have to learn when we come across a sunk cost and how to keep from wasting anymore time on it. I think I’m just going to stop thinking about stuff.

“Time is like money.” ~ Benjamin Franklin

This is the truth and the fact is that you can spend both rationally, or you can waste them on frivolous affairs. The best form of management with either is to think ahead and budget how you’re going to use them, but always remember to leave a little extra for fun and pleasurable things. The one major difference between the two is that you can always earn more money without spending it, but with time your always spending it and your never going to get more.

The best way to get more out of life is too enjoy the time you have.

Sometimes The Small Things In Life Matter

No one is too small to make a difference, they just might be too small to do it by themselves. If you can get a few big dogs in to help you out that’s great, but the problem with them is that they can’t be everywhere and help you all the time, look for someone smaller. Turn to the rats to help you out, they are plentiful and will be eager to help you for next to nothing as long as you provide something that makes them happy.

That was the realization I had watching Wanted, when Wesley releases the rats into the mill. He provides them with peanut butter, albeit laced with gasoline, in order to have them help in his mission. Several dozen dogs couldn’t have presented him with the return that he received for the hundreds of rats that went out to return his favor. So maybe you should follow his lead and seek the little guys that want you to help them out, not the big guys that you want help from. How do you think they got big, they helped the little guy out, and he let his friends know about it.

Look at how the successful social-networks grew. They all start with a small focused market, Myspace with Musicians, Facebook with College Students, Twitter with texting and the Early Adopter. Each of these small markets had one huge thing in common, they were set in a location where they could expand to the general population, Myspace to fans, Facebook to older Alum and the general public, Twitter to marketers and people looking for an audience. Then they expanded to the mainstream audiences through word of mouth and the necessity for people to have friends on the network to interact with.

They did 3 things and they did them well.

  • They decided on a market.
  • They expanded their market into a natural evolution of the original Market.
  • The focused on the large groups, of small people, to help spread the message, not small groups, of big guys.

Far too many people have the wrong perspective. They seek to become a giant by standing on the shoulders of other giants, rather than building a self sufficient community that helps each other rise up to the sky. I’m going to show you a perspective variation of the King’s Chessboard, a parable in which a king offers a peasant a payment for his services, the peasant simply asks that the king give him double the amount of rice that he gave the day before, until he has covered each square on a chessboard, starting with one grain of rice. The king soon realizes that he can’t honor this payment as it’s too much for the kingdoms granary.

In my variation, I’ll have the king offering 2 different rewards to the peasant, he can receive 1 billion grains of rice each day until each square has been covered, or he can take the option from the original story of 1 grain of rice and have it doubled everyday for each square. Most people would be blinded by the large sum that they are told they will receive each day and wouldn’t quantify the fact they will actually lose a large sum by taking the larger initial choice. In fact, you will receive only ~.0000007% of the total had they chosen the doubling.

So remember, sometimes it’s better to go with the small people and to take time for the little things in life. They will pay off much more in the long term than always trying to do something that involves the major points in of focus. Take your time and if someone needs help don’t be greedy go and help them you never know the power to change your life they might have.

Success Isn’t In Your Genes, It’s In Your Heart

The other day I watched Gattaca and was fascinated by it’s attitude. The film is supposed to be a sci-fi thriller looking into a dystopian future where if you weren’t genetically engineered you were of lower social rank. This however isn’t what I took away from the film, I took away something far brighter, a look into successful habits.  The protagonist is a genetically inferior child with a weak heart and huge dreams to reach the stars. Here’s a list of some of the habit’s I found.

Don’t Save Anything to Go Back

This is probably, the most noticeable in the film as this statement is only slightly paraphrased from the film. The reason not to save anything is because the risk going to prod you along, you will know in the back of your head it’s sink or swim. I don’t recommend going so far as that if you make a mistake you will fail completely, but just far enough to make it hard to accept failure.

Always Look Up

In the film, Vincent stares at the rocket that is his dream multiple times as it is taking off. He was positive that he would be able to find a way to get on it no matter how impossible it seemed. Positivity will lead you towards your dreams, you just have to know where to look, up.

Share Your Success

What’s better than one person being successful and reaching there goals. It’s multiple people assisting each other in achieving their goals. The movie provides a very close relationship between multiple characters as they each find success through assisting each other. Pull someone along for the ride and let them occasionally pull you up also when you slip.

Don’t Let Others Tell You What You Can or Can’t Do

Being born in a time of genetic engineering, Vincent’s parent’s new exactly what was wrong with him from the time he was born. As the movie progresses you can clearly see that he was triumphing over these ailments that were supposed to cripple his potential. He set his own bar and didn’t let what was supposed to happened keep him from going strong. Don’t let other’s inhibit you from doing what you set out to do.

Success Isn’t In Your Genes, It’s In Your Heart

Remember that, you achieve what you want to achieve, and only what you want to achieve. Your life isn’t predetermined by what’s pumping through your veins but what’s pumping through your mind. So what is it that you want from life and who are you taking for the ride?

Stop Crippling Your Potential

Did you come up with a valid excuse for not doing something in 2008? If not, either your a truly honest person who knows how not to hinder their opportunities and doesn’t look for the easy way out, or your a liar. To be fair, I believe the majority is in the latter or you said yes, and  don’t worry I came up with an excuse and used it all year round, too. It’s something that’s unavoidable you make an excuse based on facts but doesn’t really have a standing on that area of your life.

With me, I failed out of college and used an excuse all year round that could have been an influence, but I know wasn’t. The night before 3 of my final exams the first semester I suffered severe muscle spasms in my upper back and ended up in the E.R., until 2 in the morning, and also had to pack to leave school so I didn’t sleep at all. It’s all true, except I omitted the fact that I had already slipped to the bottom of my classes, or close to it. I went back for the 2nd semester but gave up on everything in the 3rd week after I realized that I wasn’t going to be able to keep my scholarships. This damn thing has been my crutch and I limped around with it just because I could; well now it’s time to change.

If you share an excuse like that with me; I want you to toss the crutch out and be honest with yourself and with others. You can be great, your just going to have to learn to walk again without having a crutch there to keep you from falling down. You can be whatever you want to, but first you must see it, then you must do it. The world is at your fingertips are you going to take it by storm this year. Here’s a quote to keep you going throughout the year.

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act, but a habit.” ~ Aristotle