This blog and my videos are out of sync again. Isn’t that always the way? You always run out of sync just when you need it the most.
You’d think I would learn to stock up.
So interspersed with my usual chatty babble will be links to the last three videos I have made. They are just talking beardy head stuff, so you didn’t miss anything too exciting. But I like them.
Here’s the first. It’s about cities.
That’s how it works, folks. From Netflix to my brain to you.
I am very interested in ways to update this modern lifestyle of ours. I think it has developed the kind of systemic instabilities that if it were a piece of software would require either a patch or a reboot, and I shudder to think of what it would take to “reboot” modern civilization.
I am picturing a comet. Damn, why did I ever read God’s Anvil, the sequel to Niven’s Lucifer’s Hammer? It’s a hyper realistic, hard science fiction description of the world ending from a comet strike.
Freaked me the hell out.
Anyhow, I am increasingly convinced that the people of the modern world are suffering from a profound mass spiritual crisis due to modern life’s inability to meet their higher needs. Consumer capitalism is very good at the stuff near the bottom of Maslov’s pyramid. Food, clothing, shelter, and entertainment can all be had in copious amounts at prices that make them available to nearly everybody.
And modern life is pretty good at the safety and security needs. Despite what the media would have you think, crime is extremely rare and random crime to people in nice neighborhoods rare still. We have made life very safe and are always striving to make it even safer. Most of us do not have to worry about our physical security.
We do it anyway. But we don’t have to.
But that’s where it stops. Consumer capitalism can’t bring you friends, or family, and as for sexual intimacy, it can only really bring you the sex part.
Real intimacy cannot be bought or sold.
What modern society desperately needs is a spiritual expansion project that builds upon the excellent foundation consumer capitalism provides and expands it upwards by creating social structures that can reach and comfort people, and break the isolation that our careless society creates.
The next vid is about how you’re a caveman.
At least, a little bit.
I am quite pleased to have a little caveman in me. It explains a lot, really.
I am very interested in the dawn of humanity. It’s such a fascinating time to think about. The first people who were… people, there on the east coast of Africa or possibly somewhere closer to the center. What did the world look like to them? How could they have made sense of their place in the cosmos? To them, the whole world was the plains and rocky shores they lived on.
Did they think there must be more?
Particularly, I have been pondering the question of the very first true human. That is, the first one with what we would call sentience. What would life have been like for him or her? What must have it been like to be smarter and more aware of the world than everyone you have every known? Did other proto-humans suddenly seem like animals to this first member of homo sapiens sapiens? Did they wonder if there was something terribly wrong with them? Did they seem spooky and powerful to the rest of their tribe?
Perhaps it happened many times before it happened to someone who, through circumstance or personality, could turn this power to its advantage and use it to have a reproductive edge over both its tribe and its dangerous surroundings.
In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is only king if he is the sort of person who can use his vision to gain power. Otherwise, he’s a lunatic.
This First True Human (FTH for short) must have had a very unusual life. Everything about its freshly minted consciousness must have frightened and confused it, and it had nobody it could talk to because there’s a good chance nobody could talk.
There are some doubts as to whether sentience could arise without language. I am positive it could, and the doubters simply lack imagination.
The third and final vid is about jokes.
I think everyone, or at least everyone who likes to laugh, has that one or two joke that is all theirs because they are the only people they know who find it funny, and that makes it a sort of treasure, in a way.
It’s a joke that needs you.
Often, the reason others don’t get it is that they lack the knowledge required to understand it. That’s not the joke’s fault. The number one rule of comedy is “know your audience”, and if you tell a smoking hot Star Trek joke to a bunch of people who think Star Trek stars Jabba the Hutt, you are going down in flames.
And sometimes, it’s because the joke has a kind of irony that, quite frankly, takes a certain degree of intelligence and intellectual engagement just to detect. This is another case of needing to know your audience. Your intricate little bon mots will probably go over better at the chess club than at the tractor pull.
But sometimes, it’s all about you, and luck. The right joke at the right time just tickles you in just the right way that it opens the floodgates of laughter, and you will love that joke forever for it, even if nobody else does.
Well that’s it for today, folks. Still excited about the new place, but the reality of having to moving all this furniture is really sinking in.
I am thinking $350 ain’t gonna cut it.
This is gonna suck a lot before it’s cool, isn’t it?
I will talk to you nice people again tomorrow.