dal niente

Month: November, 2005

To my friend, Jesus,

In biomedical ethics class today, I kinda snapped.  I’m usually a
nice silent student who doesn’t cause much of a fuss because sometimes,
it’s just not worth it.  I pick my battles.  But I the
vampire finch just could not resist the boobie that was the fundie.

The topic was surrogate motherhood, but it doesn’t matter– because a
fundie can make a big deal out of anything.  I’d been listening to
this classmate’s bullshit for an entire semester as she jammed up
critical discusions on the finer issues of the canadian health care
situation by throwing in a whole lot of hoofs from the trample of her
moral high horse, but then today, enough was enough.

So I raised my hand. “What you’re arguning has nothing to do with what
is right or wrong.  What you’re arguing are values that are
fabricated by your religion, and are as good as arbitrary.  So for
you to argue against the proposal is like grounding yourself saying
apples ain’t orange enough to be oranges.  You’re missing the
point.  It’s a non-issue.”

“But we’re talking about life here!  We can’t just sell life as if it…”

“Are you a vegetarian?”

“No….”

“Are most of the good responsible people you know vegetarians?”

“No… but…”

“Well, I’m not a vegetarian either, but if you really cared about the
sale of life then maybe you should consider it.  You seem to be
the better person here after all, I wouldn’t want your morality to be
stained with the sale of a living creature after all.”

“Now you’re just being insulting.”

“No, I’m highlighting that a lot of these fundamental values that
you’re falling back on have loopholes that allow for contradiction–
maybe even hipocrisy.  So if I was health minister, you tell me to
base public health care policies on them, you’ll have to understand my
reluctance. You talk about deffending life, but all you’re deffending
are fabricated values.  It’s just one interpretation.  And
what we’re doing here is prooving that other interpretations that can
satisfy different values might even have more practical benefits– but
somehow, someone always manages to say that what’s efficient is
necessarily godless.”

I pause.

“And someone just manages to always say without saying it that what’s godless is bad.”

I won’t get into details, it’s a messy story.

At the end of it, she told me that I’d burn in hell.

Let me tell you about my friend Jesus.

When I was young, I went to church every weekend.  I was even an
alter server.  I had my first communion in a little white
gown.  I learned things like the commandments.  THere was a
time when I had a few chapters of the new testament memorized word for
word— even today, I still know all the passages, paraphrased in my
memory.  You can’t read a passage from either the new or old
testament and I wouldn’t at least have a glimmer of recognition– you
basically can’t surprise me with anything in the bible because I was
religiously religious.

But that don’t mean jack all when it comes to my friend Jesus.

See, the way I see it.  I can’t be blamed for having a hard time
beleiving; but i don’t blame this on God Himself and doing a bad PR
job.  But I blame it on his fundies who can’t decide.  And
who can’t come up with a campaign that *makes sense*.

A fundie might argue that I have to embrace god to get to heaven– but
i think doing good ought to be enough.  If the God that turns out
to be real cannot recognize my best efforts regardless of my
alleigence, then fine, throw me to hell.  I’m not doing good
because i subsrcibe to monarchy– I’m not doing good because you say
it’s good– I’m doing what I think is good because that’s all I have.

I made up some theories a long time ago about the ‘perfect human’ and
the theory goes along the lines of weeding out what I call ‘personal
treason’.  Treason has connotations of a higher authority– a head
honcho.  Someone who will reprimand you for your crimes, maybe
even cast you out.

Well, personal treason is when you betray yourself.

You don’t have to answer to anyone.

You answer to yourself.

And only to yourself.

And if God cannot be happy for you when  you do what is right for
the sake of it being right, and if you don’t want to start putting a
little TM sign on everything saying “This goodness is trademarked by
GOD” well then hell.  I don’t want to be God’s friend.

But if you were God, wouldn’t you agree?

When you have friends… you don’t just do what they say because they
say it’s what you should do.  You do it because you agree it’s
what should be done.

And since God is the strong silent type, I’ll just have to fly my own path.

I think the thing I resent most about Fundies is that they treat God
like a baby.  They speak for him.  They play the parent for
him.  Sure, baby jezus and all that– but afford the guy some
intelligence– don’t you think that if God is God, He’d look around the
world and see just what is good and what isn’t?  Don’t you think
He’d be mature enough to accept that if people don’t preach, but are
still good people, that that’s a good thing, and that’s good enough?

The best way I can respect God is by respecting myself.

Just like how the best way for you to respect your friends is to respect yourself and make yourself worthy of friendship.

And what a bittersweet relationship to ourselves it is.

My prescription, from what I logically can figure– you don’t have to
beleive in God.  But just do what you think is right.  Not
because someone told you it’s right.  But because you THINK it is
right.

No hard feelings, Jesus.


How different I
How different you
and how different the world
if for a moment of doubt
that would break our focus
only to allow us to see

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This is the story of the black lines under your eyes


and how they came to give face to your eyes that were so red


 


together bearing burdens of hours past midnight


and hoping for when you could finally go to bed






Tomorrow night is going to be my first game with the LBA badminton league. I will have to finsh all my term papers about 2-3 days in advance knowing that i need my sleep to be in combat condition for wednesday. My Division 5 RsM team is trucking out to Ile-Bizard (the fricking middle of nowhere) to challenge them on their home turf. I must say, I’m really looking forward to this, win or lose.


It’s been forever since I’ve played a team sport, much less been the captain of a squad, so we’ll see how it goes.  I wonder if it is in any way ominious that when I did that zombie survial test, I scored pretty high in mental toughness, but a stinking 46% in leadership (which means that i tend to leave teammates to die, or make decisions that get teammates killed).  But hey, this is badminton– no zombies, right?






Vittek asked me at some point “why do people want to be on a team?” And to that… who knows.   Because the benefits are as individual as they are shared– sure, you can share in victory, but you can also share in defeat.  And there are expectations.


Or maybe that’s just the point.  To share in something.  Even if the team setting is a fabrication, it is a mendacity that we excuse because it makes us feel good.


What I’m saying is that we’re not barbarians or warriors in an army where watching eachothers’ backs would make a 6 person team very team like, especially since we only play 2 of us at a time.  But then again– there is that bond that comes from knowing that you can look at your partners and think, here is someone who is uncertain.  Here is someone who knows nothing of the future, and if anything, knows a lot about past defeats. And even those who are just wataching, they wish you well.  It’s as close to praying that I’ll accept on my behalf.


And for all my partner’s uncertainty, he or she is trying, trying and inspiring me to go that much further. Despite the weight of expectations, here he/she is, by my side, in the face of an opponent, and we shall fight until the game is won or lost, we shall fight because it is what we chose to do– we subscribe to the ideals of victory.


To share in that… isn’t that worth the trouble of being on a team?

Randomly:

While I was using the terrible toilets at the Faubourg campus of
Concordia, what, with all the shit stained bowls, urine on the floor
and javel in the air (not to mention more toilet paper on the floor
than in the bowls) I was reminded of a time back in high school.

It was grade 11 I think, back when the high school marching band was
away from montreal on a competitive tour around the US, we were
probably on our way to philadelphia or florida… doesn’t matter. 
Air conditioner on the bus was not working, so morale took a shot in
the knee.  People started getting on eachother nerves.

When we were at a gas station, went to the washroom, sat down on the
can and started doing my business.  Just in that span of time
between “finished my dump” and “pulling up pants”, I hear the voices of
a pair of the juniors outside.  It’s what we would call an
‘escalating’ conversation.  Next thing I know, the stall shakes, I
hear swear words as someone hits the floor and then anothe rpair of
scrambling hands.

I burst out of my stall, only my boxers up and my pants still at my ankles, do a quick pull.

I grab one of the guys, person A,  by the collar and fling him
away.  I think he slips on a patch of water or pee and flies into
a garbage can really really loudly (lol).  I didn’t throw him that
hard but if you only heard the noise outside, it probably sounded like
i was really beating the shit out of someone.  The guy who i’m
standing over, person B, think’s i’m helping him and he gets up and
he’s going to lunge on the guy who i flung away, so i start restraining
him.  But it’s very, very difficult to restrain two people when
you’re just one– in fact, as I’m holding person B back while shouting
about an inch from his ear to calm the fuck down  (all the while,
doing a horse stance to keep my pants up), then person A is back on his
feet and starts sucker punching B!

Total mess, I tell you.  So I’m forced to fling B in the opposite
direction for his own good (it’s pretty easy to fling someone when
they’re gasping for breath from a sucker punch) and he flies into the
opposite garbage can at the other end of the washroom, and then A is
trying to get past me.  So I start restraining A, and B is back on
his feet…

Luckily, one of MY friends came through the wasrhoom, sees both guys
crowding around me with my pants down (kodak moment) and starts kicking the shit out of
everyone in the room who isn’t me.

Good to have friends.

I zip up my pants and sit on one of the guys until he calms down (which
is pretty easy in a washroom floor, when you tell them ‘i’m not letting
you go until you calm the hell down’.)  My friend was a soccer
player who could lift more than his own weight easily over his head, so
he didn’t even need to restrain the other guy– he just stood in the
guys way and gave  him ‘a look’ that said everything that didn’t
need to be said.


Later on, we would all laugh about the incident.  The two guys who
were scrapping with eachother ‘made up’, in the way that highschool
relationships are pretty much tosses of the drama coin. (Damn drama
queens)

My friend and I would contemplate how they were lucky that we didn’t
report the incident and get both of them kicked out of band, or
suspended for that matter.


There’s no moral to this story.

But it’s just an observation that there will not always be a pair of
stronger neutral parties to keep us from killing eachother– so we, and
by ‘we’ i mean everyone, might think twice before doing what we do,
because we’re adults with very real consequences to our actions.

On my last post I said that some people just write such thoughtless
things, and it’s funny because everyone who actually has thoughtful
posts are the ones who commented.  Don’t worry, I love you
all.  Or something.

Those of you who lurk in the shadows wallowing in self pity– you know who you are!  The SHADOW KNOWS!

Ahem.


No need to point fingers.  I was reading a xanga just now, one of
these xangas that I don’t subscribe to but that I err upon from a
friend’s xanga sub list every now and then.

The basic idea is that this person, let’s call him/her X, had a class
about politics.  Suddenly, after the span of a class, X hates
everything about capitalism and the government.  Finger pointing.
Say that the church and the government and the wealthy people should go
to hell, and that money should be given to the masses.

Now… there are some good ideas here. And some very bad ones.

For one thing, a good number of the people who make up the masses are
total fucktards who don’t deserve the power or money– in fact, if you
gave it to them, they’d do something ‘stupid’ with it.

Please note that I said ‘a good number’ of them, and not
everyone.  It’s generalizations that make the situation that much
worse. X also advocates moving out to somewhere far away from humanity,
because humanity sucks.  Yes— okay. So lets ALL be
hermits.  If you ask me, hermitage is on that list of single most
selfish things you can do in society… it is the intellectual
highground to be alone, but it is the definate moral lowground– if
you’re so smart, why aren’t you helping people instead of running away?

That is the main problem I have with these people who live for
anarchy– they don’t know the first thing about making anarchy
work.  They just think it’s cool to take down authority and give
freedom to everyone.

The fact is that the government here in Canada could be a hell of a lot
worse– but it isn’t.  I’m not saying it’s ideal.  What I am
saying is that the government is a reflection of the people– and the
fact that people have differing opinions.  If the government does
something stupid, it’s because a good amount of the population supports
that idea.  Canada isn’t a dictatorship– neither is the US for
that matter (that’s as great a compliment as I can come up with at the
moment, sorry to everyone in politics).  What people don’t realize
is that it is not simply enough to say that the government is bad– one
has to be a part of the process, or one has to push the process.

If person X is so righetous and and knowing, then person X should be
the one who takes the time to rise in the ranks and get into government
or other position of power.

Easier said than done, of course.  Because ‘anarchy’, in the
popular (and wrong) sense is something that is as easy as telling your
buddy that “this shit is unfair”.

I am very wary though– taxation also came up in X’s post.  Ideas
like how the wealthy do not pay taxes anyway.  I’m not going to
adress that because that’s entirely too complicated at the moment.
(Keep in mind X and I are in canada, not the US, so it makes a bit of
difference as far as social services go)

There is a very good chances that I’m “reading too much into this”,
that what I read is just a random rant.  But like life goals–
remember, I say that if you procrastinate, it’s not that you have
better things to do, but rather, that you don’t want what you’re
procrastinating from enough (thus, procrastination isn’t actually a
deviation, but rather, a reflection of of your true dedication to your
goals)– I beleive that rants are not just random thoughts based on
mood, but they do indeed reflect what we truly beleive on a larger
scale.  And if they dont– well, then people should stop saying
shit for the sake of sounding intelligent or badass, and people should
just start saying things because it’s what they beleive.

In either case, to beleive that government should be dissolved is a
very dangerous wish to be making until one has a better idea.

Though I’m a bit of a cynic myself, I don’t think it holds to
generalize that wealthy people are the problem in society– there are
plenty of wealthy people who make differences in the world. 
Differences that we rely on daily.  But that’s playing on words–
okay, so we can make a generalization, “wealthy people who don’t invest
back in society are bad for society”.  That’s a little better.

But we’ve already identified that wealthy and powerful people can be a problem. What next?

Who’s the hero? The poor man who bitches and whines?  Let me add
that bitching and whining is not a virtue in itself– bitching that
leads to positive change, on the other hand, is.  Bitching for the
sake of bitching just makes you bitchy. So, ironic as it may be, there
are probably more virtuous ‘wealthy’ people out there than there are
poor ones, because poor ones tend to only bitch and whine, holding onto
their social status as stigma without actually acting in any way to
press positive change. (Depends on how rich you mean by wealthy though)

What it seems to me is that anyone who took a political science class
on canada is suddenly warranted to throw stones at parliment and demand
a free ride in a fancy car with a winning lottery ticket on the
dashboard.  That’s just *stupid*, i’m sorry to say.

You want to make a difference? Okay. Fine.  BITCH.  But at
the same time, ride a bike to school.  Don’t buy a fancy
car.  Recycle.  Turn off the lights you don’t use. Use
rechargable batteries.  Drink responsibly.  Invest your
money. Volunteer.  Don’t buy into brand names.

Shall i make the checklist longer?  Are you scoring PERFECT so far?

I have no illusions about how ‘good a person’ i am, or how ‘important’
i am to society.  But no matter what my current level on that
scale is, i’m working on pushing that score up a day at a time, one
action at a time.   I don’t consider myself an anarchist, nor
am I a conservative, or a liberal or whatever the hell term you want to
put up.  I just aim at being a responisible citizen who will
contribute to the society that has allowed me to live here. So it
fucking insults my intelligence when someone wants to put themselves on
the moral highground, wizen because they took a political science class
and suddenly know everything there is to doing the right thing by
turning your back on society.

The current systems of government and social order may be broken. 
But it is MY system.  OUR system.  You turn your back on
that, and you’ve got nothing.  You fight to make it what it should
be… and the process in itself validated.


The fact that the ‘masses’ includes a lot of stupid people who would do
dangerous things with power… well, that’s part of the cyclic problem
with society isn’t it?  But it also reaffirms the importance of
our inclusion, not exclusion.

If you’re in a bad cycle, you have to be inside it to know how it works
and make a difference.  External forces often don’t understance
the nuances of your home ballpark.  You fix it from the
inside.  You smarten up your people, the government smartens up
too.  And vice versa.  But since you’re not government– not
yet– you smarten yourself up, and you smarten your neighbors up– you
do your part to smarten everyone and anyone that you can up.

THIS is what society is about.  Society is not about uprising or
damning the man.  It is about standing together, even without adversity.

This is why one of the slogans for 14th Haven is to “pity the nation
that needs heroes”… because you can find heroes everywhere, you’re
just not looking with the right criteria in mind.  And the kinds
of heroes we should want to become are not often regarded as heroes.

But who cares about definition… just go and do your thing. That thing that helps everyone.

There’s something really nice about the first snow of each
season.  (Okay, so it happened a few days ago at least and I
forgot to write about it back then, but hey, we’re all behind right?)
BM pointed it out and I guess, grudgingly, I agree.Snow at the begining
isn’t a mess yet.  It doesn’t mean waking up an hour early to
clean the car, or that you have to break out the winter jackets yet
(cause you’re not that smart yet).  It’s just something out of the
blue that happens, simply, and everything for once looks clean.Snow is
the great equalizer.  In the snow, we are all cold, we are all
bewildered.  We are all covered.  We’re this close to nature,
and it’s the first snowfall is the only time when we aren’t so caught
up in shoveling and fishtailing on the roads that we can just enjoy it,
and not feel that social need to hate it.


On a side note…This shit is so very deep.

I would like to read someone write an inspirational Xanga.  Something that involves some thought.

Not that there aren’t– it’s just that aren’t nearly enough.

People have so much time to write, it seems, when they want to bitch
about things– but it’s unhealthy, if you ask me.  People have a
good day, they say “I had a good day”.  People had a bad day, and
suddenly they understand the whole world by introspecting and
extrospecting on the mechanics of the world shitting on them. 
Thoses kinds of posts are like ten times longer then the ones where
something good happens.

Why can’t people be analytical about things that make them happy? 
They’re too caught up in the moment?  Why is it that when people
are angry or sad or whatever, they can write so much about their
suffering?

Do people somehow beleive that happiness requires less thought than
sadness?  Is it really true? I mean, sadness is just as easy to
obtain as happiness– it’s just a hundred and eighty degree difference,
which may take mere miliseconds on a turning coin.


I used to be a crazy fan of Bruce Lee.  I wish he had lived longer
to write more because his kind of advice was the kind of smart talk,
the kind that doesn’t give you the answers but rather gives you a way
to look at things with an open mind.  He’s very similar to a lot
of modern poets actually , in that they questioned the
traditions.  He wondered does this stuff really work for me. But
then again, if there’s one thing i learned from reading his writing is
that I don’t need any teacher but myself– and I don’t mean that there
aren’t people who know more about the world than I do, I mean that no
matter what people know and have to offer, ultimately it’s how i digest
it that shapes who i am.  And that’s what i mean by teching– my
learning is closely related to me teaching myself to learn, if that
makes sense.

So in a way– the fact that he died so long ago shouldn’t have any
relevance– the thirst for advancement is with me, i’ve been infected.

And that’s what we have to do with the world– see if it’s working for us.

Here’s a little tribute
that brought back all the nostalgia of the martial arts mania that I
had when I was younger and my body wasn’t so broken. The wait is well
worth the download for those of you with dialup even, I think.

Here’s a movie I’d like to produce.  Everything in bold is a title of either a Steven Segal or Jean Claude Van Damme Movie.


Be prepared for the action event of the century as martial arts legends Steven
Segal and Jean-Claude Van Damme pair up in this thrill a minute
ass-kickger, “Double Justice: Foreign Executies on the Wake of Death“!

When Matt Hunter (Segal), a Cyborg Legionnaire, is called to get his man, he’s Out For a Kill.  When the Death Warrant‘s been issued, there’s Nowhere to Run for criminals.  But when his black-ops unit, the Hard Corps, is suddenly wiped out by a single myserious figure, known only as Clementine, Hunter is Marked for Death!  Stranded in Monaco, Targetted, betrayed by his govrnment and at Maximum Risk, Hunter runs into fellow Patriot, Matt Ranger (Van Damme), a retired Street Fighter organizing recreational Kumite championships. Ranger takes up the Bloodsport again to make a Hard Target for the man who destoyed his dojo and left him for dead. The only link he has is the name: Clementine.

Hunter and Ranger band up to give a Double Impact that is the stuff of legends, fighting in the Wake of Death right out from the Belly of the Beast.  But while Out For Justice, the Double Team‘s Quest is Derailed when they find out that Clementine is only Second in Command in an organization known only as The Order… and that the conspiracy is larger than they ever thought.  Hunter and Ranger must make an Executive Decision— victory seems Out of Reach, but maybe, just maybe,  Hunter and Ranger might take it to Sudden Death

Segal and Van Damme combine in this ass-kicking per minute action extravaganza. For these two, there is No Retreat, No Surrender !

Why videogames are so much more fun.

Jinryu says:
what about steven segal?
you know, i was in the video store today.
he’s got a new movie.
try to guess what it’s called.
not too hard.

z – WoW. says:
Beatdown?
Large Angry Man?

Jinryu says:
3 words.

z – WoW. says:
*very* angry man?

Jinryu says:
involves a verb.

z – WoW. says:
Angry Fighting Man?

Jinryu says:
fighting leads to…
(blank)

z – WoW. says:
Geez, man, I’ve never seen one of his movies.

Jinryu says:
okay.
lets take another angle.
like  a james bond title.

z – WoW. says:
…Fighting Another Day?

Jinryu says:
close
very close
which day?

z – WoW. says:
…Monday?

Jinryu says:
if it’s not monday, tuesday, wednesday, thursday, saturday or sunday, then its…

z – WoW. says:
Friday!

Jinryu says:
and that is also …..
what day
3days minus 1days equals….

z – WoW. says:
Tuesday?

Jinryu says:
3 minus 1!!!
3 minus 1!!!!!!!

z – WoW. says:
Equals…  two.

Jinryu says:
two + day = friday
gah!
TODAY
the first word is TODAY
sweet jeezus
i such at charades

z – WoW. says:
Yeah, man!

Jinryu says:
okay. well. moving on.
something happens TODAY.
you got two words left
TODAY (blank) (blank)

z – WoW. says:
Jesus Christ!

Jinryu says:
today jeesus christ?
um…
okay. what did jeezus do?

z – WoW. says:
Die?

Jinryu says:
YES!
That’s the 3rd word!!
So you got a middle word left
Today (blank) Die!

z – WoW. says:
We?

Jinryu says:
close.
opposite end of the pronoun table

z – WoW. says:
They!

Jinryu says:
um…less of them.

z – WoW. says:
He?

Jinryu says:
today he die? that’s not gramatically correct.

z – WoW. says:
You!

Jinryu says:
yes!
YES!!!
TODAY YOU DIE!!!
Good god lets never play this fucking game again

z – WoW. says:
No kidding.





“Duhhhhhhh…. did I do something wrong?”

I don’t really care if there’s a nippon revolution coming or not–
that’s no excuse for local stores to be pimping shit mangas everywhere
and anywhere just because they can.

I recently picked up Hellsing, whose concept seemed interesting enough
from the book… tried out the anime and it was frikking TERRIBLE.

I mean, poor animation, terrible character development, bad
scripting.  It does all the cliche badass stuff without actually
having any substance to back it up. It’s certainly not for children…
there’s a fair amount of blood in it, and there’s also a lot of “Fuck
this” and “fuck that” in the language, so I’m led to beleive it’s for
mature audiences– but there’s nothing mature about the intelligence of
the storylines.  I could pretty much summarize each of the 3
episodes I’ve seen with one or two lines.  Like, “Hellsing
institute is attacked unuccessfully.”  The scripts are goddamn
terrible, i mean, no plot, terrible lines– who could enjoy it except
monkeys who just like flashing colors.

It always makes me wonder– who makes this crap?  Don’t they look
at the final product and say to themselves “hey, maybe we shouldn’t put
this out there because it will be a stain on our names, and beacuse it
smells like shit?”

I mean… I’m just glad I borrowed the dvd from the library otherwise
i’d be very upset that I’d actually spent money on this crap.