Hubskihttps://hubski.com/A thoughtful web.Hubskihttps://hubski.com/images/discussion.pnghttps://hubski.com/https://hubski.com/pub/384957A Wee Stroll #walkinghttps://hubski.com/pub/384957Well, I've said in the last few odd Pubski posts that I still need to write a post about my journey around Ireland last year. Recently I found waiting until I got the record certificate a good excuse to put it off, but unfortunately it just arrived.I suppose, to make it easier on myself, I'll just begin at the beginning. A few different strands came together to result in this journey.In early 2013, while I was still in university, I got a phone call from a friend whom I hadn't spoken to in some time. I was surprised already, and then he told me to sit down. A mutual friend of ours had committed suicide. Naturally, after the phone call, I went to Tesco to buy a six-pack of beer.She was the kind of bubbly, always-smiling girl who instantly lights up the party, and also the kind I've discovered tend to be hiding crippling depression behind that same smile. I hadn't actually spoken to her in months, and discovered that no-one had - or rather, that she hadn't spoken to any of us, and was withdrawing herself from people.It fucked me up a bit.Time passed. The next summer I was climbing Croagh Patrick - the holy mountain in Mayo, visible on clear days from where I am now - with my friend Killian. It was the last Sunday in July, known as Reek Sunday locally, and a day on which thousands of people climb the Reek, some of them barefoot. As we were making our way back down, I started to think it'd be an interesting challenge to climb the highest peak in each of Ireland's four provinces barefoot. That's as far as I got, because I immediately forgot about it.Some more time passed, and I was with my then-girlfriend (and some new friends) on the Camino in Spain. I did some of it barefoot - roughly 350km - but I was too slow to keep up, and did the majority in shoes. Still, when I returned I figured it'd be even cooler not just to climb the mountains barefoot, but also to walk from one to the other in one huge trek. A quick bit of Google Maps told me it'd be just a bit over a thousand kilometres. Like most things, I said "someday" and forgot about it.A little more time went by - don't worry, this is the end of the inspiration story - and I was flicking through the new Guinness World Records book while sheltering from the rain in a bookshop. I flicked through the "Great Journeys" section, always my favourite, and saw it: the longest barefoot journey. 1488 kilometres, by Michael Essing, in his native Germany, and I thought, "I can beat that."The rest was me deciding to do it the next year (i.e. last year), applying for the record, saving some money, buying equipment, and biding my time in TEFL, which I was already starting to hate a bit. I didn't go back afterward, either, but sadly also didn't manage to pick up any sage-like life wisdom or decide what to do with myself. Still working on that!Around this time I also decided to raise money for Pieta House - an Irish organisation that counsels people at risk of suicide or self-harm for free. They have ten centres around Ireland now and are frighteningly busy. They have a good reputation because they've been very transparent about where the money goes (no scandals!) and because suicide is a very salient issue right now in Ireland.I've just addressed the why and not given any actual indication of the what. Maybe I'll just use the old "narrate using pictures" escape. Here's the route:After my walk, I merged all of the GPS files together and loaded it in Google Earth. It deviated a bit from my planned route, but that's not important. Apologies for the low resolution - it's just a screencap. I'd love to make a really nice cartographic map to hang on the wall with my route on it, but don't really have the knowhow.[Edit: I just realised there's no indication of where I started. If you go due north of Galway, my hometown and starting point of Claremorris is about where you hit the white line of the route. The yellow line is the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. I walked counterclockwise around the island.]Anyway! Yeah, that was the route. Over 2,000 kilometres, every step barefoot, and no transportation used at any point (though sometimes people took my backpack ahead for me).It would take too long to really describe the journey, and anyway if I ever write the book if the book ever gets published, you can all read about it there. ;) So here are some choice elements.Yellow paint is your friend! Its smoothness got me through many a hard time. Really, though, the best place to walk is where cars' tires rub off the ground, but this is not always an option for obvious reasons. Sorry to disappoint, but I didn't actually climb the mountains (yet). In this photo you can see Croagh Patrick in the background. This was on the morning of day three, when I was rapidly discovering how difficult it was, and had more-or-less decided to walk around the mountains instead.I got to see some absolutely stunning places. This is Doo Lough Valley in Mayo, really out in the boondocks, for Ireland. I was really happy that I got to see such a huge amount of my own country, because so many people never see much at all of theirs, and travel elsewhere instead.Resting my feet next to Killary Harbour just the next day.Don't ask me.What felt like the loneliest road in Ireland, and where I lost my mind for the first time. The surface was very rough, my feet were in a lot of pain, and it felt like I spent weeks walking through (it was hours).My tent on the seventh night. I camped three times in three and a half months. That's insane.Walking through one of the Irish-speaking areas of Ireland. The entire population is pictured.So for the Guinness World Records I had to provide a fair amount of evidence. There were photos, videos, GPS files, a log book and a witness book... I took many photos like this next to a sign to prove I was where I was. Still in the Gaeltacht here; note that someone had removed "Galway". In Ireland, signs are usually in both English and Irish.An obligatory shot of the Cliffs of Moher. I was too lazy to walk along the cliffs - the path was gravelly and I'd have to loop back anyway. I've realised that so far this post is completely missing what for me was the best part of the walk - the people I met. People stopped me to talk to me or to donate, or to give me food. People brought me into their homes and fed me and gave me a place to sleep. I was left with a completely altered view of humanity - most people are really nice. It's a shame that my richest memories of the walk are those shared with the people I met, because I can't post many of those photos. I lost my phone just after the walk, and with it all of the photos I'd taken with people (most of the photos here are from my camera, and I used my phone (for selfies with people). I have some photos with people, but they were taken from Facebook and the quality is atrocious. (I was taking photos on a Samsung Galaxy 1 and sending them to my sister via FB messenger, and then she uploaded them to my Facebook page). I've cheated here and just posted a photo of my friend Donal and I having a pint in Sligo toward the end.I stayed in people's houses about half of the time, and the other half was a mix of B&Bs and hotels and so on (most of which did not charge me).Down in Kerry. It's green! In the distance are the MacGillicuddy's Reeks, which I also did not climb.These are both in Killarney, where I was joined for a couple of days by my housemate, Lucas. He was recovering from a knee surgery. This was also the day I miscalculated the distance and we ended up walking an extra ten kilometres. It was the longest day of the entire journey.Possibly one of my favourite places on the entire journey. The Beara peninsula has a waymarked trail, which meant I had a respite from contending with traffic. The weather was being extremely un-Irish and lovely.A sight that brought tears of joy to me eyes. I had a minor obsession with road surfaces by the end.Eyeries, the original technicolour dream town.This was at the top of an old road over the mountain that was used to access the now disused copper mines. The photo really doesn't do it justice; I sat here for twenty minutes looking out over the sea.I am not a photographer.Appreciating the view with my new sheep buddy. Joined for a day by my friends Eoin and Jess! This turned out to be a long and difficult day for everyone owing to crappy backroads and a poor decision to have a midday pint.I have very few photos of cities and towns because I usually used my ill-fated phone, and few photos of rainy days as well (they very much happened). Here are some more cliffs, this time way over in the southeast (I've skipped ahead a bit). Approaching Tramore. In Irish, it's Trá Mór, which means "big beach". Yeah.There's a rather strange little park filled with weird Hindu statues down in Wicklow. The owner was a bit pretentious and condescending, but the statues were... interesting.My sheep friend. Approaching Dublin at this point, and well over halfway.With my main man Killian at our alma mater; this tower is on the south campus in Maynooth.The exact point in Ballynahinch where I broke the world record. Yep, right next to some wheelie bins.Roads in Northern Ireland have (small) pavements!Cows on the beach. You know you're in Ireland... At this point I was up on the northeastern coast, walking on a trail that ends up at the Giant's Causeway.And at the causeway, it was busy.Spotted in Derry/Londonderry. There was a lot of sectarian violence here back in the day. The gable paintings are quite famous.Glenveagh National Park was beautiful, but the road was a nightmare for my feet. Mount Errigal is here hiding in the clouds on the right - another mountain I had originally intended to climb.Entering Sligo, and getting very close to the end of my journey.My sisters put this up for me as I was re-entering my hometown. There was quite a gathering in the square to welcome me back; if I was a weaker man, I might've cried. Then I had a load of pints.I'm sorry the picture quality isn't greater and that it's just a few disconnected photos. It's really hard to choose out of so many moments, and to properly describe my journey. So I'll take the lazy way out and give you a bunch of statistics!Total distance: 2080.14km (1292.54 miles)Duration: 104 days (from 1st May to 12th Aug)Funds raised: €29,562.13Avg. distance per day: 20kmAvg. not including rest days: 23.11km (longest was 37.75km)Cost: ~€2000 (this doesn't include the equipment I bought beforehand, and is extrapolated from my bank statements) (it's also very little money, considering)Nights camped: 3Nights in private accommodation: 51Nights in people's houses: 50Pieces of glass removed from foot: 7Thorns removed from foot: ~20 (does not include thorns that only got halfway, of which there were hundreds)Number of sheep seen: Several billionCigarettes smoked: ~2000Beers drunk: ~140Number of ice creams received while walking: 7Number of dogshits stood in: 0 (Yeah! Lots of sheepshit, though)Apologies for how disorganised this post is. There's a whole lot more that I haven't touched on here at all. If you're interested, hopefully someday you'll be able to read my book about it. (If it ever gets anywhere, I'll definitely be sending some Hubski's way.)Here are some bonus shots of my feet!I'm a clean guy.From a piece of glass.The day after I finished.https://hubski.com/pub/383796Close Encounters of the Classified Kind: a post-event analysis of the close approach of USA 276 to the ISS on June 3 #spacehttps://hubski.com/pub/383796Something odd happened a few days ago, high above our heads. In an earlier blogpost, I discussed in detail how the odd spy satellite USA 276 (2017-022A) was set to make a peculiarly close approach to the International Space Station ISS on 3 June 2017. The spy satellite was recently launched for the NRO as NROL-76 by SpaceX, on 1 May 2017.https://hubski.com/pub/383197How the World’s Most Interesting Man Befriended the World’s Most Powerful Man #goodshortreadhttps://hubski.com/pub/383197All I knew about the gig I would be auditioning for were a few scraps of information that my agent Barbara had told me over the phone. It was a commercial for a beer company. Dos Equis, a Mexican brand that ironically needed a boost in the Latino market, was looking for a new spokesman. What specifically were they looking for?“They want a Hemingway kind of guy,” Barbara said. “That’s you!”Was there any script to read?“They want improv,” she said. “You can do any kind of monologue you want, but you have to end with the line, ‘And that’s how I arm-wrested Fidel Castro,’” she said.I couldn’t believe the size of the crowd that was milling outside. The line of actors backed up around the block, perhaps 400 or 500 of them. Too much competition. I turned back to the truck and heard Barbara’s voice in my head: “You left without trying? You never know if you don’t try.”So I turned around. All the actors around me were far younger, and Latino. Naturally, the advertising agency and production company would want a Latino to play the lead. This isn’t worth the time, I thought. All these guys look like they are going to play Juan Valdez. I’m a Jewish guy from the Bronx.https://hubski.com/pub/381910Look what the Lit.cat dragged in. It's Issue 19. It features 💔, 🍕, and Hubski's own 🌮🐱. #morefuckinglitcat #goodlongreadhttps://hubski.com/pub/381910Here's the promo video for the issue: It's been a rough period for me, I'm glad I've finally gotten this issue around together. Lit.cat's Issue 19 is technically the season 2 finale, but I'm still winging it as it comes along. Some notes:I recommend staring at the intro screen for at least 30 seconds. It's really cool. Rediscovering Wishington is really whimsical, the author is too talented to keep submitting to my journal. PolarS was the most popular of this issue, which I didn't expect. It's always fun to look at the site statistics to see who brings in the most visitors. tacocat has a poem published that evokes in me how it feels to finally finish this issue after getting around to it in a month.https://hubski.com/pub/381652My Family’s Slave #society #goodlongreadhttps://hubski.com/pub/381652She lived with us for 56 years. She raised me and my siblings without pay. I was 11, a typical American kid, before I realized who she was.https://hubski.com/pub/381295What the last Nuremberg prosecutor alive wants the world to know #history #societyhttps://hubski.com/pub/381295Lesley Stahl: Did you meet a lot of people who perpetrated war crimes who would otherwise in your opinion have been just a normal, upstanding citizen?Benjamin Ferencz: Of course, is my answer. These men would never have been murderers had it not been for the war. These were people who could quote Goethe, who loved Wagner, who were polite--Lesley Stahl: What turns a man into a savage beast like that?Benjamin Ferencz: He's not a savage. He's an intelligent, patriotic human being.Lesley Stahl: He's a savage when he does the murder though.Benjamin Ferencz: No. He's a patriotic human being acting in the interest of his country, in his mind.Lesley Stahl: You don't think they turn into savages even for the act?Benjamin Ferencz: Do you think the man who dropped the nuclear bomb on Hiroshima was a savage? Now I will tell you something very profound, which I have learned after many years. War makes murderers out of otherwise decent people. All wars, and all decent people.https://hubski.com/pub/381173Teaching stuff is resolved. #tellhubskihttps://hubski.com/pub/381173Shoutouts: keifermiller, lil, ThatFanficGuy (possibly nowaypablo? I figure that you might get a chuckle out of it. Same goes for am_Unition)Past few days were mostly about this thing:I got an answer, although not from the principal. Like all professional adults, she fucked off. But one of the teachers told me why she thinks I'm no longer welcome. Apparently, students who attended my short lesson about invariants were discussing one of the humorous things that I just threw as a bit of an intuition. See, the invariant is pretty much exactly the thing you think it is: if there's a set of object that follows a certain set of rules, there might exist a property derived from the rules that will not change no matter how many times you will apply them. For example, in cellular automata (like the Conway's game of life) there will always be some sort of a structure that just persists. Glider (same as in Forever Labs logo) will glide forever etc. Here's roughly the analogy I used:You could actually use invariants to disprove Karma. Let's use a simple example and say that there are n people and only one of them has bad karma. Someone with good karma will be forced to exchange it by doing a deed that will effectively swap bad person's karma with the other's good karma. Therefore if there's even one person with bad karma, there will never be a state with only good karma.(I know that it's not precisely how it works, I just wanted to make an analogy that would speak to them.)Apparently I must have had some sort of an agenda against Buddhists or Hinduists or whoever else uses Karma. I mean, there are bad reasons, stupid reasons and there's this. I wonder if I would talk about Ham sandwich theorem (yeah, that's not only a real thing but an important mathematical result! Pancake theorem is a name for it in two dimensions) it would be deemed as insensitive toward people struggling with weightloss.Fact that I wasn't confronted about it is just pure shit on part of the principal. I guess that I'm not mature enough to handle such sensitive topics, right?Anyway, I have requisitioned one of the lecture halls for every other Thursday. My high school outreach is about to become official as I have put forward some paperwork. With two post-graduate students also wanting to get in on that and one professor willing to vouch for us, even the people in administration will have a problem with refusing it. What about the interest of actual students? Well, I went ahead and talked to principals in two other schools in the area. After meeting with them and some teachers, they were really into it and agreed to ask students in their extended (AP) courses. So far I have a rough estimate of thirty-eight people from my high school wanting to attend and twenty-six from the other two schools. Aside from proving me once more that I went to the Forge of Nerds, it also means that this thing is going to run for quite a few people.Official start: most likely this October. Regardless, I am going to do this thing throughout the summer if there will be anyone interested. Shit is going to get real. :DMoral of the story: even if the school is famous for being the place for 'whiz-kids' to be forged into future mathematicians and physicists it says nothing about the principal not being a complete and utter dumbass. I would say that it should be a lesson for me, to stop using weird analogies, but all of it could have been averted if only the mentioned principal would give me enough benefit of the doubt to actually let me explain it and talk it out like adults. But that's not really a lesson for me: I know that most of the "adult and professional because of age" people are full of shit and more childish than I ever was.https://hubski.com/pub/381081Benjamin Fraser - You Drank Some Darkness (flac's first album - it's finally done!!) #hubskioriginalmusicclubhttps://hubski.com/pub/381081EDIT: now on soundcloud!It's here, it's (mildly) queer, and it didn't manage to kill me - it's that album I've been talking about for many many moons. I did every part of this except violin and female vocals. On the whole, I'm really happy with how it turned out - I may have someone else re-master it for me once I have the money, but I'm pretty fine with the job I did on that for now. I had to change some things last minute to get things to sound nice on Bandcamp, but that's ok.This has been consuming basically every hour that I haven't been working for the past few weeks/months, and I am so relieved to have it over with. I crunched the numbers, and this took about 500 hours to make, a large amount of which was spent on 4 or 5 songs that are no longer on the album. I'm planning on putting those out on their own EP in a month or so, but right now I just don't want to record a dang ol' thing.-----------------------------------------------------------------Let's talk about these songs!1. The TempestThis song is 7 years old, written when I was 15. It's a song I like, but it's honestly on this album partly so I can just get a decent recording of it and get it out of my system.The first part was recorded mostly on my tape deck, and the rest of the album is all digital. I wanted this track to sound kind of like the first 2 EPs I did, and then transition into something much bigger.2. FoundThe first thing I recorded for this album, and the last thing I finished mixing. The nylon guitars on this track are the bane of my existence, and I couldn't re-record them because my nylon guitar is on another coast.3. Homeward BoundAnother old one. Here's a live video, if anyone wants to see it. One of my favorite songs to play, the fingerpicking is really fun.4. Life in a VacuumA song I wrote for a cute girl.5. BindA song I wrote for a cute boy. This one was actually cut from the album until a week or two ago, and I'm really glad I put it back on.6. HelenMy absolute favorite song to play. This is actually the second recorded version I have - here's the first. I wanted a sparkly new version now that I'm a bit better at recording, and I really wanted to change up the ending.7. KiyokoReally really happy with the second half of this, production-wise. Based on this person.8. IsaacAnother do-over, here's the original. I think the ending of this might be the prettiest thing I've ever made.9. And Became VisibleThis song has over 200 tracks on it. That shit is never gonna happen again.The poem that gives the album/this track their names is "Elegy" by Tomas Transtromer. I was also considering "Scarecrow".-------------------------------Takeaways:No, you can NOT fix it in post.I spent so much time trying to fix mistakes that I made while tracking, and I wish I had just spent the extra few hours to get better takes/mic placement to start.There's always the next album.I had a very hard time not getting discouraged about my mixing ability when I was comparing my tracks to commercially produced albums, but things became a lot better when I just compared things to the last folk EP I put out. I'm not trying to be better than anyone else, just better than the last thing I made.Finishing something imperfectly is better than never finishing it at allI've been recording music for almost 4 years now, and the fact that it took me this long to try and make an album is a testament to how much the idea of putting out a substantial project scares me. Glad my inner perfectionist was exhausted enough to finally let go of the small things.thenewgreen, steve, bfv, ButterflyEffect, elizabeth, kantos, zebra2, lil, @every person who has ever expressed slight interest.If you like this, you can buy it. If you want a free download, PM me and I'll send you a link.-Brendan.https://hubski.com/pub/380940The View From The Back Row: Journalist and photographer Chris Arnade discusses a country divided by meaning, morality, education, and economics.https://hubski.com/pub/380940In 2016, pundits speculated endlessly on that mysterious place called Trump Country. To many in the Beltway, much of America was a foreign country, to be analyzed statistically rather than in person. Chris Arnade, on the other hand, was determined to escape his coastal bubble. Arnade got into his old van, and has spent the last several years traveling hundreds of thousands of miles, interviewing people all over the country, discovering their joys, sorrows, discontents, and aspirations. In the process he has produced a set of photographs and stories, depicting the everyday Americans who are left out of the media’s understandings of the country, and who feel left out of the 21st century economy. Arnade spoke to Current Affairs editor Nathan J. Robinson about what he has learned in his travels.https://hubski.com/pub/380927A selection of Kentucky Derby hats #fashionhttps://hubski.com/pub/380927eat your heart out limey fuckshttps://hubski.com/pub/380912Horology's Easter Problem #horologyhttps://hubski.com/pub/380912Friendly reminder: if you own a Patek Philippe Caliber 89, don't forget to get the Easter program wheel swapped out before you miss next year's egg hunt. If not, you can grab one at the popular online auction site.there is a gear in the astronomical train of the [Strasbourg Cathedral] clock that makes one rotation every 2,500 years, and that furthermore, the clock features a celestial globe that makes one rotation about an axis showing the precession of the Equinoxes only once every 25,000 yearshttps://hubski.com/pub/380220My first portrait painting: River Gao #art #myart.mkhttps://hubski.com/pub/380220Until now, I have only painted landscapes. My wife asked me if I thought that I could paint portraits, so I gave it a shot by painting my daughter.I'm pretty happy with the result. There comes a point at which you can do no more, and I can stand to leave this one be. I definitely learned a lot from it. She looks paler here than IRL, and making the background black adds a bit of severity, but it was my intent to make it more of a portrait than an image. In that sense, I consider it a success. Also, if you know her, you know this expression.John Singer Sargent said: "A portrait is a painting with something wrong with the mouth."Here's part of the process:https://vgy.me/a/55p9NDsTUnfortunately I don't have the very beginning on my camera.I'm looking forward to doing a landscape again. I think this painting is going to influence my approach to them.https://hubski.com/pub/379984My personal story of hope, strength and experience [Audio] #thehumanexperiencehttps://hubski.com/pub/379984A lot of you have been here to hear me talk about the shit I've been going through. If you're new it's right there in my profile.Last night I told my life story as part of my intensive outpatient that I've been going to since I left residential rehab. There's an AA thing where we tell our stories to the group so they can learn from our aforementioned hope, strength and experience.It's kinda long. Sorry. It could be longer. I've been through some shit, self imposed and outwardly afflicted. I also like spoken language more than written for its honesty, informal nature and less pretentious vocabulary and structure. (See? I would never say that last sentence out loud in a conversation.)After my spiel the group was very supportive and impressed and I may have helped someone who heard it, which is sometimes all you can do to help someone else recover. I also start to cry at the end so you have that to look forward to. Just trying to tease you into listening to it.Thanks guys. Stay awesome.lil Cedar kleinbl00 (Not choosing favorites but you guys have been their in particular significance.)https://hubski.com/pub/378900rd95's poorly written, crummy career advice #jobs #ramblingshttps://hubski.com/pub/378900Someone on Hubski came to me asking for some career advice. For the sake of their privacy, I’m gonna keep them anonymous, which will be easy to do because I don’t have any good answers for the specific scenarios they laid out for me. However, I wanted to put my response in the open (with their permission) because there are many people on Hubski who are much smarter and wiser than I am. Hopefully their knowledge and insight will keep any bad advice of mine in check. The gist of the letter breaks down “Do I try to do pursue something I love, or do I try to pursue something that will pay the bills? Be brutally honest.”My response follows . . .I’m probably the worse person to come looking to for advice on this kind of thing. I’m a college drop out. If you knew my career, you’d laugh. For all my enthusiasm, for all of my tenacity, for all of my willingness to be open minded, I am not what you would consider a successful person.I could be a dick and say “find a job that fulfills both,” and leave it at that. Thought we both know if it was that easy you wouldn’t be asking the kinds of questions you’re asking. If you want the brutal truth, it’s this. You’re an adult now. Life is hard. Big decisions will always be hard and there will be challenges that come with every choice you make, even if the choice is an easy one. To make things worse, every time you look back it’ll be with nostalgia, doubt, and curiousity as to how things would have turned out if you had chose differently. Ten years from now, you’ll look back and ask yourself “What if I had chosen a different major? What if I went with that other job? What if I moved to that other city?” Even though you know who you are as a person, where you stand in the world, those questions will always be there, because even if you made the best possible decision every time, you’ll never know. So first and foremost, learn to be at peace with who you are today. When you’re not at peace with who you are, know why and strive to find that peace again. When you are at peace, strive to become something more, because if you stand too still for too long, that sense of peace will slowly erode.Building your life, believe it or not, is a lot like building a house. It’ll take your whole life to build, often you’ll be building it alone and often you’ll be building it with others, and you’’’ remodel it from time to time as you go along. What’s important to do though is understanding how you’re building it and why, so you can use it to the best of your ability and know how your house can benefit you and how your house can hold you back. Some of my friends, their houses are like tents. They’re not very stable, they’re not very safe, but they’re enough to keep the rain out. If need be, they can pack up and move on at a moments notice and find someplace new to pitch their tent. I envy their mobility greatly. I don’t envy their lack of stability. I have other friends who have houses like fortresses. They’re beyond sturdy, they’re beyond safe. Mobile, they’re not. If the rivers of their lives ever dry up, they’re fucked. Me? My house was like a tent, until I met my wife and we moved in together. Now we’re kind of like a prairie cabin together. We’re pretty secure in place even though it’s not fancy, but if the need ever arises, we can pack up and move on without sacrificing too much.Know that your career is just one part of your house and you can add and remove other parts as you need be. If you want to do good in the world and your career path is something mundane, find ways to be charitable outside of work. If you want to be creative and your work is all about thinking inside the box, pursue your creative passions outside of work. Your career will only have the amount of meaning you chose to give it. It can be your basement, your living room, or your master bedroom. The question you have to ask yourself is, what room you think is appropriate and why.So think about your life. Think about that house. Think about how you might want to build it and what you want to fill it with. Know that it’s not the worse thing in the world to tear it down and start again, but know that the older you get, the bigger your house becomes, and the harder it will be to remodel let alone tear down and start anew. Unless there’s a fire. Crisis often seems to be one hell of a reset button.Lord Mercy. I suck at advice. Here. Know what’s awesome about philosophy? It’s helpful if you take it lightly. Know what sucks about it? If you need concrete answers, it’s good for fuck all. I can’t give you advice about your situation, but I’ll give you some real advice you can take with you. Headers and all.Work EthicWords cannot stress enough how important a good work ethic is. The surface benefits are numerous. When you’re a hard worker, willing to be flexible to the needs of the job, your chances for better hours, better pay, career advancement, peer acceptance, etc., all go through the roof. People will know you’re dependable and reliable and you’ll likely be treated positively because of it. Just know the difference between being helpful and letting people walk all over you. If you feel like you’re being taken advantage of, don’t assume that’s the case, but examine your situation to see if it might be. If you’re busting your ass of and getting treated like shit, chances are, you’re getting taken advantage of. However, if you get the feeling that you’re being treated very well and it’s all because of how hard you work, then your work is paying off. Just don’t let yourself get burned out and if you’ve taken on too much, don’t be afraid to approach your boss and say “Boss, I’m overwhelmed. Can we talk about the workload?” See where things go from there. Use your best judgment.If you’re able to take pride in your work and you see your job in a preferable light, whether you see it as a privilege of a challenge or just plain fun, it really does become easier to do. Seeing your job in a preferable light is a key part to your work ethic and actually makes your job easier to do. Some days it’s gonna be hard to get out of the house, go to work, and do the shit that needs doing, but it’s important to keep on doing it. If you let yourself slow down, you’ll quickly lose momentum, and often that momentum can be hard to build back up.Honesty Really is the Best PolicyYou’d be amazed at how much being honest can really make things easier. It makes people more receptive to what you have to say, creates an air of reliability about you, and when you openly acknowledge problems, you and the people they affect are much more likely to tackle them effectively. Just know, trust is hard to gain but so easy to lose. DebtWhenever possible, avoid getting into debt. The more money you owe and the more people you owe it to, the less flexibility you in life. This lack of flexibility can affect everything from your purchasing power to your job prospects to your ability to pursue leisure opportunities. Even more, the further you are in debt, the easier it is to fall further into debt, and the harder it is to get out. This applies more to just owing someone for a car. If you have tickets, pay them off. If you owe back taxes, give the government their due. If you have a warrant out for you, get it taken care of. You would not believe the way things can come back to bite you in the ass, especially years later when you least expect it. The sooner and cleaner you can get things taken care of, the better.This also applies to social debts. If someone loans you money, pay them back. If someone buys your lunch, gives you a ride, helps you out with a work assignment, anything, pay them back. It is very easy to earn the reputation of a mooch. It’s very hard to get rid of it. The best way to handle social debt is by getting ahead of it. Be charitable. Offer to pick up the bar tab, give people rides, pay for their ticket at a movie, etc. People will know you’re generous and repay your generosity in kind. Keep two things in mind. First, sometimes people genuinely can’t repay you back for your favors. That’s fine. That’s why I used the word “charitable.” If you’re doing nice things out of the goodness of your heart and not because you expect things in return, you’ll be seen as a warm, welcome element in peoples’ lives. If you do nice things because you expect something in return, people will see you as manipulative and any act of giving you do will have a negative taint to it. Second, figure out what is socially acceptable as generous. There’s a huge difference between buying someone’s movie ticket and buying someone’s plane ticket. There’s a difference between buying lunch for someone now and again and buying lunch for someone every time you hang out. Knowing the difference helps avoid awkward situations and also protects you from being taken advantage of.Know Your RightsKnow your rights as a consumer, as a tenant, as a citizen, etc. This will protect you in so many ways. Everyone from banks to landlords to the government has the power to take advantage of you, if you let them. By knowing your rights, you can help mitigate this. I’ve literally had an old landlord make changes to my rental contract before signing it and accepting the keys because there were clauses in the rental agreement that ran counter to state law. I’ve had friends that have settled debts, disputes with the banks, and arguments taken to small claims court because they know what’s what. By knowing what’s what, you can also help protect yourself from getting in trouble down the road, just by seeing warning signs and deciding not to pursue something. At the very least, always read what your signing. More often than not, written in the contracts and plain as day, are statements by the company, other person, etc. saying how they can and might screw you over.Which brings me into the segue of bureaucracies. They’re seemingly massive and imposing and they seem to be run by heartless people who don’t care about you. Here’s the secret to dealing with bureaucracies, whether they’re the government, hospitals, your work’s HR, or what have you. A lot of the time, if you can convince them that their job will be easier if they help you, they’ll end up being a lot more flexible in getting you taken care of. Knowing your rights also comes in handy when it comes to dealing with these machines because that knowledge is like a sledgehammer you can use to break down some of those walls that get put up.So, I dunno. That’s what I got. I wish I had some concrete answers, but I don’t. In thinking about it again, I think the best advice I can give is that the sooner you accept that your life is in your hands and that things are gonna be hard, the easier it will be for you to start taking control of your life. Empower yourself whenever and where ever possible, be flexible to options, and know that while your career will be a huge part of your life, it’s not the be all and end all of your life. You can have the shittiest job in the world and still find fulfillment outside of it.https://hubski.com/pub/377938I have completed drug and alcohol rehabilitation https://hubski.com/pub/377938I had an awesome time at rehab. Not really. Kinda. It was productive. I'll write a more detailed account of things later. Rehab is an interesting place. Right now I'm busy enjoying time with my lady. I had to check in with you crazy assholes though. https://hubski.com/pub/377779It's the International Trans Day of Visibility. I'm Trans. Ask Me Almost Anything #askhubski #hubskihttps://hubski.com/pub/377779General rules:1.) don't be a dick2.) don't ask me about my sex life (frankly it's boring and nonexistent anyways so there's not much to tell)I Can't speak to the transmasculine experience, I'm a trans woman. I can also only talk about my experience, which is one of many different trans experiences. Ask away. I'll try to clarify lingo as I go - The QUILTBAG community loves its lingo.https://hubski.com/pub/377426Clean Air Act: the best regulation #politics #environmenthttps://hubski.com/pub/377426In an earlier discussion, johnnyFive suggested the Clean Air Act as an example of regulation done well.This raises a question: how do we keep score? It's easy to oversimplify. Some people will approve of the program because they like the idea of clean air. But legislation rarely does exactly what it says on the tin. We should at least ask if the air got cleaner after the Act. Indeed, it did; air quality in the United States is much improved since 1970, when President Nixon created the Environmental Protection Agency to expand federal regulation of pollution. But how much credit do we give EPA for the improvement?Congress requires the EPA to give itself an occasional report card, so we could ask them if they think they are doing a good job. This is a dubious approach. The EPA has the same incentives as any other organization, public or private, to convince the people who provide its income that they should continue writing checks. I reviewed their 1997 report and found analysis that appeared very motivated to get a good score. CostsOn the cost side, EPA recognized that “a significant uncertainty arises in the cost analysis as a consequence of constructing a hypothetical scenario” yet came up with an estimate of 523 billion (1990) dollars in compliance costs over the 1973-1990 period. This is the half-trillion in costs cited by a book excerpted in The Atlantic.But the next page of the EPA report estimates “Indirect Effects of the CAA,” the second-order effects, such as “higher consumer prices, which resulted in reductions in the quantity of consumer purchases of goods and services produced by those sectors. This reduction in consumer demand under the control scenario led, ultimately, to reductions in output and employment in those sectors.”These secondary effects are hard to measure, and tricky to report fairly over time, but are similar in magnitude to the direct compliance costs, resulting in total costs over the period of a trillion dollars.Although small relative to the economy as a whole, the estimated changes in GNP imply that the potential impact of the CAA on the economy by 1990 was greater than that implied by expenditures ($19 billion in 1990) or annualized costs ($26 billion in 1990, annualized at five percent). Discounting the stream of 1973-1990 GNP effects to 1990 gives an aggregate impact on production of 1,005 billion dollars (in 1990 dollars discounted at five percent).A billion here, a billion there. and BenefitsBut the EPA report describes that trillion in costs as a great bargain, returning many times as much value in benefits. An interesting accounting technique is the foundation of this rosy tally. The EPA uses a model that gives itself credit for 100% of the air quality improvement it found in the period 1970 to 1990, despite recognizing that state and local pollution controls and voluntary actions contributed to the improvement.Two key assumptions were made during the scenario design process to avoid miring the analytical process in endless speculation. First, the “no-control” scenario was defined to reflect the assumption that no additional air pollution controls were imposed by any level of government or voluntarily initiated by private entities after 1970. The first assumption is an obvious oversimplification. In the absence of the CAA, one would expect to see some air pollution abatement activity, either voluntary or due to state or local regulations.One might be inclined to doubt how much progress we could reasonably expect from actions “voluntarily initiated by private entities.” But the greatest advancements in environmental quality were those which eradicated biological pollution, achieved by heroes of immunology like Edward Jenner, John Snow, and Jonas Salk.Industrial pollution is another story. But industry is not interested in polluting, industry is interested in profit. Offering cleaner, more efficient products and using cleaner processes can please customers and reduce risk and liability, both potentially profitable strategies. A vivid example of improvement in environmental quality due to commercial innovation is provided by a description of London in 1890, prior to the arrival of the automobile. Horse senseThe Strand of those days...was the throbbing heart of the people's essential London...But the mud! [a euphemism] And the noise! And the smell! All these blemishes were [the] mark of [the] horse....The whole of London's crowded wheeled traffic—which in parts of the City was at times dense beyond movement—was dependent on the horse: lorry, wagon, bus, hansom and “growler,” and coaches and carriages and private vehicles of all kinds, were appendages to horses. Meredith refers to the “anticipatory stench of its cab-stands” on railway approach to London: but the characteristic aroma—for the nose recognized London with gay excitement—was of stables, which were commonly of three or four storeys with inclined ways zigzagging up the faces of them; [their] middens kept the castiron filigree chandeliers, that glorified the reception rooms of upper and lower middle class homes throughout London, encrusted with dead flies and, in late summer, veiled with living clouds of them.A more assertive mark of the horse was the mud that, despite the activities of a numerous corps of red-jacketed boys who dodged among wheels and hooves with pan and brush in service to iron bins at the pavement-edge, either flooded the streets with churnings of “pea soup” that at times collected in pools over-brimming the kerbs, and at others covered the road-surface as with axle grease or bran-laden dust to the distraction of the wayfarer. In the first case, the swift-moving hansom or gig would fling sheets of such soup—where not intercepted by trousers or skirts—completely across the pavement, so that the frontages of the Strand throughout its length had an eighteen-inch plinth of mud-parge thus imposed upon it. The pea-soup condition was met by wheeled “mud-carts” each attended by two ladlers clothed as for Icelandic seas in thigh boots, oilskins collared to the chin, and sou’westers sealing in the back of the neck. Splash Ho! The foot passenger now gets the mud in his eye! The axle-grease condition was met by horse-mechanized brushes and travellers in the small hours found fire-hoses washing away residues....And after the mud the noise, which, again endowed by the horse, surged like a mighty heart-beat in the central districts of London’s life. It was a thing beyond all imaginings. The streets of workaday London were uniformly paved in “granite” sets … and the hammering of a multitude of iron-shod hairy heels upon [them], the deafening, side-drum tatoo of tyred wheels jarring from the apex of one set to the next like sticks dragging along a fence; the creaking and groaning and chirping and rattling of vehicles, light and heavy, thus maltreated; the jangling of chain harness and the clanging or jingling of every other conceivable thing else, augmented by the shrieking and bellowings called for from those of God’s creatures who desired to impart information or proffer a request vocally—raised a din that … is beyond conception. It was not any such paltry thing as noise. It was an immensity of sound…—H. B. Creswell, Architectural Review, December 1958, quoted in The Ultimate Resource 2Henry Ford would soon provide an alternative that was cleaner for both the owner and the passer-by. The automobile would become so successful that, despite being far less polluting than the horse, it would itself become a major factor in air quality. Get the lead outThe benefits enumerated in the EPA report are enormous. Reduced health complications and mortality from declining particulate matter emissions may be the biggest single factor, but the story of lead was endlessly fascinating and captured my attention.Bill Bryson told much of the story in Chapter 10 of A Short History of Nearly Everything. Ohio inventor Thomas Midgley Jr., now known as “The Worst Inventor in History” and “The World’s Most Destructive Man,” discovered that tetraethyl lead would improve the performance of gasoline engines by reducing knock. General Motors, DuPont, and Standard Oil formed the Ethyl Corporation to manufacture TEL and leaded gasoline was soon available worldwide. (Midgley would go on to develop chlorofluorocarbons as refrigerants, and CFCs were used in consumer goods worldwide as well, until it was discovered that they destroyed the protective ozone layer in the stratosphere.)A powerful neurotoxin, lead was known to be poisonous in antiquity. In August 1923, DuPont opened a TEL manufacturing plant in Deepwater, New Jersey. An exposed worker died within thirty days, and more deaths followed, but these went unreported. In September, General Motors contracted the U.S. Bureau of Mines to research the hazards of TEL. The bureau “saw itself as in the mining promotion business, with much of its scientific work undertaken in collaboration with industry” but GM took no chances and requested that progress reports not be publicized, to avoid “scare headlines and false impressions.”GM also formed an internal medical committee to investigate the danger, but Irénée du Pont, head of the company that got its start making gunpowder, was unfazed by their unpublished conclusions. “I have read the doctors’ report and am not disturbed by the severity of the findings.” He pointed out that they were also manufacturing nitroglycerin, which was even more dangerous than lead.In 1924, two GM employees died of lead poisoning at a Dayton pilot plant making TEL, then five workers died at a Standard Oil TEL plant in Elizabeth, New Jersey. More than 80% of workers at the New Jersey plant died or suffered severe poisoning. These disasters received some publicity, and local authorities in New York City, New Jersey, and Philadelphia responded by banning the gasoline additive.Recognizing a threat to their growing market, the industry applied to Washington for assistance in protecting the profitable invention. President Coolidge obliged, and the U.S. Surgeon General launched a task force. Manufacturers put production on hold while the investigation proceeded. The task force was composed of Midgley and other industry scientists, and concluded that there was “no danger.” The Bureau of Mines report also confirmed the safety of TEL, based on limited animal testing. Manufacture of TEL resumed.Surgeon General Hugh S. Cumming would become a champion for lead. The task force recommended that the Public Health Service perform further research on TEL, given the rapid increase in the number of automobiles, but the Surgeon General requested no funding from Congress for research. Instead, for forty years, research on the health effects of leaded gasoline was underwritten by General Motors, Standard Oil, DuPont, Ethyl Corporation, and trade associations. When British scientists expressed concerns about safety, the Surgeon General made contact and the British Ministry of Health promptly endorsed TEL as a safe additive, citing American research. In 1928 Cumming encouraged New York City to drop their ban on leaded gasoline, saying “There are no good grounds.” In 1931 he directed favorable reports on TEL to the Swiss minister of health.By 1936, 90% of gasoline sold in the United States contained lead. At this point in the story, the free market advocate is in a tight spot. If government is failing to stop the disaster, and a powerful conglomerate dominates the business and successfully conceals the danger, how can the “invisible hand” do any good? The Cushing Refining and Gasoline Company of OklahomaCushing offered a lead-free gasoline, and ran an ad saying “It stands on its own merits and needs no dangerous chemicals—hence you can offer it to your customers without doubt or fear.” Ethyl Corporation pounced, complaining to the Federal Trade Commission that the small company was insinuating that leaded gasoline was somehow harmful. The FTC obliged with a 1937 Cease and Desist order blocking the competition from suggesting that leaded gasoline is “poisonous, unsafe and dangerous to the life and health of persons using such gasoline for motor fuel” and assuring everyone that TEL “is entirely safe to the health of motorists and the public.”So much for the free market. The Age of the EarthThings boomed profitably along for decades, despite some scandal during the war. In 1959 Ethyl Corporation requested permission to increase the amount of TEL, their primary product, in gasoline, and the U.S. Public Health Service approved, still relying on industry-friendly research. Little did Ethyl know that a geochemist from Iowa was about to spoil everything.Clair Patterson worked on the Manhattan Project and later at the California Institute of Technology. His remarkable story is presented in the 41-minute episode “The Clean Room” of “Cosmos.”In short, he calculated in 1956 the age of the earth at 4.55 billion years, very close to the value accepted today, by measuring the amount of radioactive decay of uranium in meteorite samples. Uranium decays to lead at a predictable rate, and Patterson found that he had to take extraordinary measures to exclude lead contamination in his laboratory. He analyzed ice-core samples from Greenland and concluded that lead used in modern manufacturing and gasoline permeated the biosphere and contaminated his meteorites.In 1965 Patterson published “Contaminated and Natural Lead Environments of Man” and launched himself, fairly singlehandedly, against the entrenched business interests and their friends in Washington. It would be an uphill battle.The U.S. Senate held hearings, chaired by Senator Edmund Muskie, on leaded gasoline. Patterson testified in opposition to longtime industry scientist Robert Kehoe, pointing out that “It is not just a mistake for public health agencies to cooperate and collaborate with industries in investigating and deciding whether public health is endangered — it is a direct abrogation and violation of the duties and responsibilities of those public health organizations.” Meanwhile, Americans were enjoying their new interstate highway system and beginning to see nature as something to protect rather than exploit. The environmental movement had begun, and with it came demand for ecological action. The Clean Air ActEarth Day was first observed in April 1970, and President Nixon took notice of the interest, announcing the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency later that year. The Clean Air Act of 1970 greatly expanded federal authority over air pollution control, and required the EPA to create a list of air pollutants that “cause or contribute to air pollution which may reasonably be anticipated to endanger public health or welfare.”The EPA administrator designated four: ozone, carbon monoxide, sulfur oxides, and nitrogen oxides. Lead, which had been banned in several cities 47 years earlier for health hazards, was not included.Unwilling to set a standard for lead in air (required if lead were listed as a pollutant), the EPA punted, asking the National Academy of Sciences to measure atmospheric lead and provide guidance. NAS followed the usual pattern in choosing members for the committee: • Clair Patterson, world expert on environmental lead: excluded • Harry Schroeder of Dartmouth, who had conducted some of the only transgenerational studies of lead at low dose: excluded • T. J. Chow, who had published fundamental studies of atmospheric lead deposition in Greenland ice cores: excluded • John Goldsmith, head of the California Health Department’s Division of Epidemiology, who had published a groundbreaking study of the relationship between air lead levels and blood lead levels in Science: excluded • Robert Kehoe, of industry-financed Kettering Laboratory: included • Lloyd Tepper, of Kettering Laboratory: included • Kamran Habibi, of DuPont: included • John Perrard, of DuPont: included • Gary Ter Harr, of Ethyl Corporation: included • Gordon Stopps, of DuPont: excluded. But he still wrote two critical sections of the NAS report, on adult epidemiology and lead alkyls. In numerous earlier publications, Stopps had stated that TEL was harmless.The NAS report, “Airborne Lead in Perspective” was a failure, did not address the questions for which the committee had been formed, and concluded that there was no evidence of toxicity for low levels of lead. Ethyl Corporation’s stock rose 20% the next day.But EPA had another mechanism to exploit. When Congress wrote the Clean Air Act, it was known that catalytic converters would be needed in cars to control hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide. These used platinum, which becomes ineffective when contaminated by lead. Since legislating on behalf of the health of human beings was too difficult, the EPA could mandate controls on lead to protect these devices.In 1973, EPA announced a phase-down of lead content in gasoline, on a five-year schedule. This time, the White House stepped in, getting the Office of Management and Budget involved. The Department of Health, Education and Welfare, slighted at a loss of importance when EPA assumed some of its authority, discredited EPA data to OMB. Big Lead took advantage of the chaos, pulled strings, and EPA delayed regulation once more.Frustrated at the lack of progress, a lawyer at the National Resources Defense Council, David Schoenbrod, sued the EPA. The District Court of Appeals found that the EPA administrator had illegally delayed setting a standard for lead and ordered him to comply.Meanwhile, the oil crisis was setting in. American oil production had peaked in 1970, and improved fuel efficiency had always been touted as one of lead’s benefits. (In practice, American cars had gotten larger and more powerful year by year, more than negating the savings.) The EPA estimated that banning lead would lead to additional consumption of 30,000 barrels of oil a day.Finally, in December 1973, final regulations requiring a phase-down for lead in gasoline were released. Ethyl Corporation and DuPont sued. The court found in favor of the industry, calling the regulations “arbitrary and capricious.” The EPA called for a rehearing, and the judgement was vacated, restoring the regulations. Industry appealed to the Supreme Court, and lost. Lead was on the way out. ReaganThree years later, in 1976, the EPA was still making excuses, so Schoenbrod sued them again. The court ordered the EPA to set a standard for lead levels in air and “end the administrative foot dragging.” The National Ambient Air Quality Standard for Lead (EPA document 600177502) finally appeared in December 1977, and atmospheric lead concentrations in major cities dropped significantly by 1980. Then Ronald Reagan was elected, promising to do away with needless regulation. He appointed industry-friendly Ann Gorsuch administrator of the EPA and reduced the agency’s budget. A scandal erupted when the administrator visited a small refinery and implied that they need not worry that costly regulations would actually be enforced.By now the large players, like Exxon and Amoco, had already made expensive revisions to their refineries to comply with regulations, and they spoke up in favor of the lead controls, lest small competitors enjoy an advantage. With Big Oil now on board, and the White House under pressure from Congress, the EPA relented. The Environmental Health Letter carried the headline “EPA Reverses Position, Toughens Regulations on Lead in Gasoline.”Research into the dangers of lead continued, demonstrating significant harm, especially to the developing brains of children, and finding no clearly safe exposure level.Ethyl continues to manufacture TEL today, for use in fuel for 167,000 aircraft in the United States and gasoline in a few remaining overseas markets. Friends of the Earth has asked EPA to look into the situation:The EPA is evaluating the impact of lead emissions from aircraft using leaded aviation gasoline in order to make a determination regarding whether aircraft lead emissions cause or contribute to air pollution which may reasonably be anticipated to endanger public health or welfare. These actions are in response to petitioners’ requests... Sources:The Secret History of Lead by Jamie Lincoln KitmanThe Ethyl-Poisoned Earth, Damn Interesting by Alan BellowsThe Removal of Lead from Gasoline: Historical and Personal Reflections, by Herbert L. NeedlemanGetting the Lead Out of Gasoline Around the Globe, National Resources Defense CouncilSpecial timeline: Leaded gasolineThe Benefits and Costs of the Clean Air Act, 1970 to 1990, EPAhttps://hubski.com/pub/377075Shopski: MR2 Intake Pipe #shopski #shop.lmhttps://hubski.com/pub/377075The MR2, like most cars, has some custom rubber intake plumbing running from the air filter and air flow meter to the intake. My MR2, like most 30 year old cars, has an intake pipe that's full of cracks and splits. I've helped it along with some duct tape patches, but they don't last long and living down a gravel road, I'd rather not have leaks for dust to get into the engine through.I searched a forum to see how people were replacing them and discovered a post from myself 4 years ago asking the same question. 4 years ago, the answer was "call up a Toyota dealership and fork over $100 for a replacement." 4 years later, and every dealership I checked didn't stock the part anymore...Time to figure out an alternative. Ebay is full of folks selling turbo intake parts...maybe I can do something with that. I ended up picking up a couple of 45 degree elbows and a 3" piece of 2.5" diameter aluminum tubing with the idea that I'd figure out what to do with it once I had all the parts in hand. The tricky part is that there's a vacuum hose that comes off the intake -- you can see the hole for it to the right of my thumb in the picture above. That had cracked about 3/4ths of the way around and was really not easy to patch. I cut a couple of elbows down to size and put them on the end of the aluminum pipe...not too bad!I put it in the engine bay and kind of eyeballed where I'd need to cut the elbows to fit the intake, then marked the cut positions with hose clamps. They form a handy guide for cutting the hose in a circle (more or less):Seems to be turning out well so far:Time to hook up the vaccuum hose. I bought a brass hose barb and some silver solder and an O/A torch setup. Drilled a hole in the hose, held the hose barb on the end of some MIG wire so as to not burn my fingers, and tried to solder it up...and failed miserably. It just would not flow onto the aluminum, and the flux just turned to soot. I looked up the solder online (the stuff I got just came with an MSDS sheet) and discovered that it didn't work on aluminum.At this point I have fewer pictures because I was a little frustrated. I dug around and found a piece of 2.5" stainless steel tubing that I had completely forgotten and decided to use that instead. Lacking a bead roller, I decided to make one with an old pair of vise grips that never worked right. I filed a piece of 1/4" steel into a rounded shape, then used a die grinder to cut a rounded trough into another piece. (By the way, if you do not have a set of carbide bits for your die grinder and you do any amount of metal shaping, you're missing out. The stones that die grinders come with don't cut worth a damn compared to these.) I welded these bits to the jaws of a pair of vise grips, then fine tuned the fit with a file.Unfortunately the vise grips had too much slop in the mechanism to squeeze a bead into the tubing, so I used a vise to squeeze the jaws together instead!This worked surprisingly well once I heated the tube a little. Here's one bead, plus the tube set up in the lathe so I could cut it to length:I broke the tip off my cutoff tool immediately after I finished the cut, so no pictures of it, but it's just a tool bit ground thin; probably a 3/32nd kerf.I rolled the second bead on, then cleaned up the tool marks and heat yellowing with some emery cloth:The beads are about 0.005" shorter than the beads on the tube I bought; not too shabby. I'm not really worried about the hoses coming off, but I wanted to have something for the clamps to hang on to.Drilled a hole in the tube and this time the solder flowed just like a dream:Cleaned up the flux with some isopropyl alcohol:At this point I discovered that the intake side of the hose is 2.5", but the air filter side is 2.75". So I bought a 2.75" elbow and used a piece of the 2.5" elbow cuff as a spacer on the end of the stainless steel tube:The finished product, right before installation:(Check out my cool wheeled stool in the background that's definitely not a tank off a dead air compressor.)I also needed a bit of hose to connect the hose barb to a T joint for the vaccuum system:Here's where the intake pipe goes:And here it is, after quite a bit of fiddling to get everything lined up right and tighened down:Tip: I like to make jaw protectors for various pliers out of bits of hose I have lying around. They're handy when you want to grab something without marring it, or if you need to, close a fuel line so you can remove a filter or something. Here's an example on my big channel locks, which I don't use often, but when I need 'em, I need 'em:Done!I cleaned up the brake rotors with some emery cloth on the lathe, since they had rusted from sitting:Hmmm, there's a car shaped hole here:YESSSSSSSI forgot how GOOD this car is! It's so tiny, and it's so nice to have a proper hydraulic clutch and a short shifter...it's like driving a street-legal go-kart.Unfortunately, the oil pressure dropped off after I ran it a bit, so I carefully nursed it back home from my test run. I'll have to figure out what's up; it may just be a wonky sensor, or it may be a bunch of crap clogging the oil pump intake. Hopefully it's not the pump itself since that's a pain to replace.Omitted: a 1500 word essay on how I think this MR2 is the best car on the face of the earth.https://hubski.com/pub/377023Teaching is Fulfilling: what TFG's been up to #3 #tellhubski #tfgbeenuptohttps://hubski.com/pub/377023Today, I woke up with the shittiest mood I've had in a while. I didn't want to make eye contant with anyone. I didn't want to talk to anyone or take any part in the only lecture I had the strength to get up to. The whole morning, I've spent listening to some of my favourite music, seemingly apart from the world. "The right music can help you survive anything".During the lecture, I've spent all my time researching material on learning Russian: tips, tests and books. It was the only thing I was engaged in. All because right after the lecture, I had my first class of tutoring Russian with Patrick, the American engineer I've mentioned over the last couple of Pubskis.Teaching is something I've been aspiring towards for a while. It's something I'm aiming to do after the uni, at least for a little while. See if it works for me. Private lessons are of greater appeal because they allow me to solve a different problem every time. This person knows X and wants to improve their Y and Z, while this person knows nothing yet, so everything is fair game.Patrick lives in an old house with his wife, Alexandra, who is a native Russian. The conversation went bilingual for a while between the three of us, until Patrick and I have sat down in his study, after a corridor full of books. He showed me the material he had accumulated so far, as well as the rich collection of various student and exercise books he and his wife have acquired over the years.Patrick is 69, and he still wants to learn something new. He met his wife almost twenty years ago in the US, where they've been living for a long while. Alexandra's parents back in Russia turned ill at one point, and she had to come back to her homeland to take care of them. Seeing how this isn't going to take a short time, Patrick sold his possessions in the US and moved to Russia soon after.He feels a little lost here. He speaks the little Russian that he picked up back in Alaska, but this isn't enough to communicate with the locals on any meaningful level. He can't order food, ask directions or explain to his students what he wants from them in the language they're most familiar with. Pat wanted to learn the language for a while now, having lived here for three years. I told him I could teach him. "Are you serious?" Absolutely. "Are you sure you can do it?"I could only smile back. He told me how he got many of his big projects as an engineer: by being a bullshit artist and then delivering on the bullshit (all his words). I was the bullshit artist now. I've never taught anyone anything, but I had education and certain expertise - and, most importantly, the desire.I was surprised to learn that simply figuring out how much of the language he already knows took us an hour fifteen. Still, we've made some progress. He's curious about every single thing he encounters, and I have to keep him at bay to make it a structured experience he will have an easier time to draw from later. He enjoys doing exercises but wants to get to actual speaking. His pronunciation is decent - he's intelligible - so even if he doesn't work on that, he'll be able to uphold a fine conversation in Russian, given enough experience.Afterwards, when the lesson came to an end, Patrick reached into his wallet and gave me just enough, like we agreed before. "Oh shoot, I thought I had more money. Alright. I'm going to give you more money later." But... That covers it. "I know. I used to teach a guy English. You may know him: Pavel. Do you know Pavel? I taught him, and he payed... generously. And you got me started, and you gave me something. So I feel like I should be generous as well."I wasn't to argue. cgod told me to enable others to be generous towards me; something I read a bit about since. He has solid ground under his feet, and I'm establishing mine. I could use the money.In a hurry to reach my friend after the lesson that took a bit too long, I completely forgot to enjoy the fact of earning my first money. Now that I had the opportunity to look back and review, I feel joyful and proud of having reached that point. I wasn't afraid to reach out to the person I appreciate. I wasn't afraid to spend time with him. I wasn't afraid to take the opportunity when it arose. Damn, I'm a teacher now! - and I earn money that way! Just like that. Day's worth of change, to build a different path for myself.Can't escape the feeling that this is what Hubski has been expecting me to be all this time. Taking care for myself. Be not afraid of taking risks. Holding my own in the battles life issues. I've been a very different person when I came here. The way people deal with things here... It's mature - and people expect everyone to live up to that standard. I found it difficult at first - and now I'm here.Maybe this is what I needed. To help someone directly. To know someone relies on me for something and I'm willing to deliver. When I was a curator, the thing that kept me up despite all the tire and burden was the knowledge that someone needs me. A group of people utterly unfamiliar with the university, its way of life and even the city it stands in needed me to tell them what's everything about. I never had anyone like that - our curators didn't explain us the ropes - so to fulfill that role for someone is a blessing.There's also something empowering about teaching an older person. Here he is, full of experience and history to share, having seen a lot and been through as much, - and now, I'm teaching him something?I hope I get to teach in the university someday. I think it would be amazing. The idea of being considered a colleague of a university lecturer tickles my whiskers.I'm not out of the rut yet, but I'm getting there. Private lessons of Russian might be just the thing to get me out of there.P.S. _refugee_, if you're still up for learning Russian, ping me in exactly a week. By then, I will be able to provide you with a decent recommendation on the books and texts to take; maybe even an outline or a programme.https://hubski.com/pub/376914New Gorillaz Music #musichttps://hubski.com/pub/376914The Gorillaz just released some new music, and I'm super stoked because they are releasing the full album on the 28th of April. The Gorillaz have a serious place in my heart. Demon Day's and Plastic Beach came out at such a weird time in my life. The Fall and D-Sides are less special to me, but I love them all the same. Most of the music they showcase from their newest album "Humanz" has me very excited for the full release.Andromeda (feat. D.R.A.M.)We Got the Power (feat. Jehnny Beth)Ascension (feat. Vince Staples)Saturnz Barz (feat. Popcaan)https://hubski.com/pub/376122Fuckin' Bookbinding, Part 3 (Probs Final, Things Come Good In Trois) #tellhubski #arthttps://hubski.com/pub/376122_____________________________________________________________wordy introHey y'all. Ref checking in here, for a third and I-guess-possibly-final post on the Art of Bookbinding. Turns out while drafting this post I realized my original, Part #1 - Fuckin' Bookbinding, Yo went up exactly 363 days ago (as of today's date, which may be a draft date, but anyway is March 16, 2017). Update: As of actual posting, 366 - I just missed the one-year mark precisely, but that's ok. PS Can you believe I spent 4 days drafting a post for Hubski? Siiiiiii And if you haven't seen it, here's Part #2, THE ART OF COLLAGE, OR, FUCKIN' BOOKBINDING, PART DEUX. Posted a less portentous 139 days ago. _____________________________________________________________meaty status-ruminantsAs of typing this sentence into this draft post right now (11:34 AM, again, 3/16/17), I'm something like bare minutes, no more than an hour or two, worth of work away from completing my very first 100%, from-the-paper-on-up, homemade book. I know in post #1 I snarked thusly:4) Making Paper At Home Is Even More Pointless Than Book-Binding, So No, You’re Never Gonna Bother Making That 100% Handmade Book For Your Mom The truth is that I have an absurd penchant for spending hours, whether it is tens, dozens, hundreds, or maybe even at this point now thousands, of them buried in creative, 'artistic' endeavors which ultimately yield finished projects I could have bought in two seconds at the store. Bread; pasta; now books and paper. There is something ineffable I relish about looking at a finished product and thinking, "I made that. I made all of that." I am sure there is also something bougie and privileged about it - not to mention possibly a little self-serving - but that is ok. If I have the privilege to burn loads of time in making pointless art I'd rather actually use the privilege than simply feed bad about my ability to do exactly that. I'll be grateful, on the sides, beside. I think I am supposed to use some of this space pontificating or at least pondering on "What Haff I Lurnt?" After all, this has now been a year-long artistic pursuit. Primarily what I feel I have learned is that a year is hardly enough. I feel like there is a lot before me, lots more to learn, but also just lots more art to create and ways to take this form of art. _____________________________________________________________WHAT CAN BE LEARNED/WHAT HAVE I LEARNEDI'm going to try to keep this limited to "Since my last bookbinding post." 1. About making paper - This is the big one. I'll be honest, I read about papermaking and thought it was possibly the most static, redundant, and bound-to-be-unsatisfying artistic endeavor I could undertake. As a result, I wasn't that interested in hustling on it. I finally started making paper.I fucking love it. It's possibly the most magical part of book-making. I wish I could show you all my paper in person, sheet by sheet, because I think there's a level of detail and interest that you get in person that simply doesn't deliver on a virtual, 2D photographic level. I could lay out close photo after close photo of my favorite sheets of paper and I still think you'd miss the best parts. I'm re-using drafts and manuscripts, as well as all sorts of other paper materials, to create my paper. It's amazing. Depending on how much I blend the material, you can still read words, phrases, even on one page a portion of an old address. I recently closed a bank account and I have all these checks left over and I am using them to make paper and deliberately not shredding them fine, so that you can see they are check material in the new pages. (The acct # is invalid, the acct is closed, AKA it's perfectly safe for me to do this - but no one looking at the paper knows that!) 2: Laminates I was struggling with finding a proper finisher for my collage and paper covers at the time of last post. I've now expanded my collection of finishers and, basically, tried: - modge podge - fixative spray - a finishing gel - adhesive laminate - heat laminate As methods to seal collages and prevent paper from being marked up or torn or damaged when I use it on my covers. So far, nothing's perfect, but I think the laminate methods are far and away the better options than any liquid or semi-liquid finishing option. It's impossible to prevent wrinkling, no matter how thin a layer you may spread, with any wet finishing option I've found. I'm still on the look-out though! _____________________________________________________________I wanted to try and tell you guys what bookmaking was like, again, for the third time. So this time I sketched out kind of a step-by-step summary. I tried to approximate timesinks and such like that but frankly, didn't do that great a job. Maybe you'll get an idea. 1. Covers - Prep a. Purchase your heavy chip boards in 8.5 x 11, bulk b. Measure and cut to size (Bulk) (Few hours) 2. Covers – Create a. (Style Options - Choose One) Fabric, Collage, or other b. If fabric, cut & measure fabric – glue w/glue gun (Every once in a while I go through my fabric backlog and try and rough-measure and pre-cut lots at once so when I want to make fabric covers I'm ready to go. The rough-measure and pre-cut might take 1-2 hours for several books' worth of covers. The gluing of fabric covers...Maybe 30 min/full set of front & back covers? each?) c. If Collage, create collage elements – glue; laminate. (No idea on time estimates for this. I haven't made many collage covers. Still in process. However takes much longer process than for fabric covers, of course.) d. If other (likely paint) – create, then finish (laminate or etc) - Paint is quick, dry time is a factor, then spraying a clear fixative to finish the paint; Another "other" cover idea I want to try is using newspapers as cover material, which I'd have to finish using a laminate of some sort e. Prior to sewing, punch - Barely takes any time but takes any time anyway. 5-10 m? 3. Paper a. Create (LOL my best paper creation time is 90 min of effort yielding 16 usable pages - but I'm hoping to keep improving my time here) i. Print grid, lines, or etc if printed (Doesn't take time but takes supplies. I try to covertly print patterned paper at places I get free printing, but that limits when and how much I can print) ii. Literally create if handmade b. Fold (Try to do in bulk, easiest when printed pages - 30 min to an hour for a few books' worth) i. Signatures – 4 sheets, 6 signatures to a book (current standard; varies sometimes depending on supplies, mood, thickness of paper, etc) c. Press (This is down time where the pages really need pressing but all I can do is twiddle my thumbs for a day, minimum) d. Punch (Doesn't hardly take any time but takes any time, anyway) 4. Assemble – Sew (30 min/book?) 5. Finishing – (30 min/book, probably) a. Tie or glue binding ends b. Final fixation if anything is sticking out or up on collages or laminate _____________________________________________IN CLOSINGI finished my first 100% handmade book for you guys. (This post pushed me to it.) So here it is. I'm pleased. Anglerfish are a symbol/association of mine. Back coverSome pages.https://hubski.com/pub/375456Build a digital clock in Conway's Game of Life #programminghttps://hubski.com/pub/375456https://hubski.com/pub/375352Emoji & Deep Learning 👾 💭 💕 #emojis #aihttps://hubski.com/pub/375352https://hubski.com/pub/374707I will send a lasercut Hubski logo to the first dozen people to donate $10 or more! #fuckinlasersyall #hubskihttps://hubski.com/pub/374707previously, on Veen Messes Around with Lasers:I've been playing around more with the laser, getting to know it a bit better. I have a ton of ideas so I got myself some 5mm wood and redid the laser. Since the wood was thicker used a much higher power setting, resulting in a bit more scorched look: kleinbl00 wondered out loud why nobody had ever tried to make a compass out of the hubski logo. Cue fast paced montage of me prototyping that idea:And this is the end result! Hubski: guiding your way. I made six of those, three thick Hubski logos and still have three thinner Hubski logos. So here's what I'm gonna do: the first 12 people to PM me a screenshot of their donation to hubski surpassing $10 and an address via PM will get one from me. I'll cover the postage. First come first serve! I'll try and keep this thread updated with how many I still have left of each. In case you don't feel like giving your cc info to Stripe, you can also send me the equivalent in ether to: 0xbef1ef1daca8519f816b5b342daa9e4b9ba398f5 and I'll pass it on. OftenBen Want -> get?mk send me an address ya bollockhttps://hubski.com/pub/374580Dr. Huxtable 5 - A Boy in Philadelphia #drhuxtable #hubskioriginalmusicclubhttps://hubski.com/pub/374580I like this one. Part of the #drhuxtable album inspired by mk. Add to it: rezzeJ, flac, coffeesp00ns, BLOB_CASTLE, ghostoffuffle, T-Dog, jonaswildman, bgood79, zebra2, steve, lil, blackfox026, ButterflyEffect, randomuser, kleinbl00lil and steve - I played hockey, with Cosby. (not Crosby).BPM 128LyricsEmboldened kidCome see where we livedYou know, I was once your ageBefore you were aroundThis was a two stoplight townAnd I knew every faceBut now you couldn't spitAnd hit dirt, if you wanted toIt wasn't always this wayThe fires would riseTouch the moon in the skyWhen I was a boyIn PhiladelphiaI wish you could have seenThe Electric CompanyWhen I was a boy in PhiladelphiaNow all that is lostI'm alone in my causeAnd the city has grown old and unknownBut now you couldn't spitAnd hit dirt, if you wanted toIt wasn't always this wayEmboldened kidCome see where we livedYou know, I was once your agehttps://hubski.com/pub/374028Still homeless. But I just had one the greatest days of my life #thehumanconditionhttps://hubski.com/pub/374028Yeah, check my post history if you don't know what's going on. I'm not going over all this shit again. I did get alcoholic ketoacidosis last week which could have killed me. Anyway...[backstory you can probably skip it if you want, this might get long]My family moved a lot. It might be one of the reasons why me and my brothers are fucked up. Getting uprooted whenever you get comfortable can be bad for development of mentally healthy humans.My family moved when I was a junior in high school. At the time I was dating a girl who was essentially exactly what I would want physically and we also got along great. She was my first love. I dismissed those teenaged feelings for a long time, but I digress. So we moved but tried to stay together because we were naive. Adults with frequent flyer miles can't easily make the long distance thing work. We broke up and she immediately moved on. Come the age of MySpace and Facebook and I learn she married that guy. I talked to her a few times over social media but sequestered all those memories and feelings. I tried to leave her alone assuming she was happy and not wanting to interfere.[end intro, real story about to begin]She sent me a message on Facebook, incidentally on a day I was going to kill myself. I'm a clinically depressed alcoholic but alcohol has saved my life a few times because I sailed right passed Dutch courage and passed out before I could pull the trigger. I don't even keep Facebook messenger on my phone normally because it's awful but after rehab and arrest and all that shit I went through I replied like three months later. We started chatting and she is actually not happily married, has moved out of the house and has not been happy for years.Cut to the chase here, on Sunday she drove three hours on a whim to see me. I just thought we'd catch up and watch TV or something. But we hit it off again and better than before. We were both shy in high school but she is so confident and strong now because of her job. I'm not as shy either because in art school I had to stand in front of my peers every week and defend my work or make up bullshit because that is honestly sometimes the only thing art is. (I don't know how many artists would admit that. I still love modern art.) No longer being shy, awkward adolescents, I thought we had better chemistry than ever.I was just hoping to kiss her on the cheek, maybe hold her hand, but we spent probably over a day just holding each other, me doing the best I could to make her feel loved after however long her husband has been treating her like shit. She didn't leave until 4AM this morning. I stayed up all night to wake her up and because I didn't want to spend my last hours with her unconscious.For at least two years I've been low level to severely depressed and now it's like I can remember why people enjoy life. I have zero desire to drink even though I cried myself to sleep and have been fighting back tears all morning. I'm doing surprisingly good with that right now in the public library.Not only all of this, I may be going to an actual rehab with doctors and therapy that is insanely expensive due to my lack of insurance. My mom's been mentioning it but I think this is the catalyst that will make my parents feel that I'm ready to get sober. And I have a reason to now that I've never felt I've had before.I'm still homeless. I don't know what's going to happen. Everything is uncertain. I'm not expecting to have another night like this with Brandi again. I'm not pinning all my hopes on this woman but I feel like I actually have hope for the future like I haven't in a long time.Thank you, hubski. You put up with my shit and are supportive. There is no other place on the internet where a bunch of strangers care about each other the way the users here do (even if we fight sometimes).lil I don't know why. I just really wanted to hear from lil so I'm only tagging her. No offense.Also Cedar has been keeping me company on Google Hangouts.Thanks again. You guys are great.-Chrishttps://hubski.com/pub/373324On the Milo Bus With the Lost Boys of America’s New Right #politics #seriousseasonhttps://hubski.com/pub/373324https://hubski.com/pub/372662I painted this for my lady friend for Valentine's Day #painting #arthttps://hubski.com/pub/372662She liked it.https://hubski.com/pub/372140Mining bitcoin in Venezuela #bitcoin #venezuelahttps://hubski.com/pub/372140A mob recently broke into the Caracas zoo to eat a horse.Even computer scientists and skilled technical professionals can't reliably find work. Next year, the unemployment rate is expected to climb above 20 percent. But the main factor driving Venezuelans to take up bitcoin mining is a price control put in place by the socialist government: Electricity is virtually free.Ricardo, a 30-year-old photography teacher, is earning about $500 in monthly revenue with a rack of five mining computers hidden in a soundproofed room of his family's two-story house. His mother has chronic liver disease, and the medication she needs to stay alive is no longer sold in Venezuela. With bitcoins, he's able to purchase the drug from foreign suppliers. "Bitcoin," he says, "is our only hope nowadays to survive."https://hubski.com/pub/370750How to Cut a Hubski Logo with Lasers #hubski #fuckinlasersyallhttps://hubski.com/pub/370750The thrilling sequel to my almost-1200-days old post: This time with more lasers and more wood! I had a great morning where one of the volunteers at the local makerspace explained how I could get my Hubski Illustrator drawing into something, I dare say, gorgeous:The process itself was a bit clunky - the lasercutter is an unintuitive Chinese import with a crappy Windows XP laptop to control it - but man, is it ever satisfying to watch once it's all set up. I tried making 6 wheels. Two of them ended up not cutting right because of mistakes, but the other four turned out very neatly. As they say in Dutch, wherever one chops one will find splinters. Here's a dope as fuck gif that shows you how it looks when it's engraving the logoHere's another shot:BUT WAIT, WHAT'S THAT IN THE CORNER? I also made Forever Labs cutouts! Hope you don't mind me breaching copyright stuffs. They're about the size of a poker chip. I made five, where can I send them to? mk thenewgreen b_b There is one more thing in the background there...but that's for another day.https://hubski.com/pub/385107https://hubski.com/pub/385107Welp... I might as well take the whole bottle of pills and lie back down...https://hubski.com/pub/384538https://hubski.com/pub/384538Four miles west of downtown Denver. Super convenient to highways and amenities. PM me if Denver makes sense for your travel schedule. Even if it's just for a lunch stop, hit me up and I'll buy the band lunch.Edit: screw that - you guys should come stay if possible. We could even do a house show. And your keys player has to show my oldest kid a thing or two.https://hubski.com/pub/384043https://hubski.com/pub/384043I found one buried in an /r/ethtrader post somewhere: https://icostats.com/. Specifically, check out ROI since ICO in the sidebar and toggle ETH in the top right corner.https://hubski.com/pub/383508https://hubski.com/pub/383508Would a sociopath hold a golf outing for kids with cancer only to funnel a significant portion of the proceeds to himself? Oh wait. Yes. Yes, he would.https://hubski.com/pub/383377https://hubski.com/pub/383377Humility is fine. Shame is not. Resist shame.https://hubski.com/pub/383108https://hubski.com/pub/383108neededinevitableWhat does UBI boil down to? It's a prop to keep capitalism from running off the rails once society no longer carries the structures that made it a stable social arrangement.But it needs to do more than that to work in the long haul.It needs to support the current economic system and it needs to suppress the reorganization of society around whatever new social structures emerge. Because those laborers are indeed human beings. If they're freed up, they're going to go into society and create new complexity.And that newness is going to give rise to something else.https://hubski.com/pub/383012https://hubski.com/pub/383012"These people" are "us people" under poorer circumstances. There's a real tendency for people to think that poverty reflects a moral or intellectual failing but it's a shamefully dismissive way to view the problem.https://hubski.com/pub/382664https://hubski.com/pub/382664He makes that point by the end of the essay.https://hubski.com/pub/382393https://hubski.com/pub/382393[badged]https://hubski.com/pub/382068https://hubski.com/pub/382068Only recently learned about Langley Schools Music Project, and I was just enchanted by it. So emotionalhttps://hubski.com/pub/381475https://hubski.com/pub/381475Thanks for this. I connect with your descriptions of the ache of disconnection, even though my situations are all different. I'm rich in friends, even though most of them are scattered so far, and that is its own kind of different pain. Ibuprofen for social pain makes good sense, though I'd never thought of it before. It seems inflammation is the problem regardless, doesn't matter if the trigger is externally or internally initiated. I've been consuming turmeric paste in my coffee to combat inflammation, rhodiola rosea when I need a sanguine shot of energy, and kava kava when I need to chill. It does well enough most of the time.I really enjoyed that How To Be Alone video. It's beautiful, and contains lots of helpful stuff in it, threads from some of the best traditions which promote solitude. I'm thinking of that Pascal quote right now, “All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone," though I think he was selling it from the negative, rather than positive side. The Buddhist version sees the solitude as the link to the real source of connection, beyond people. That's present in some Christian mystics' thought as well. Not sure if it's what Pascal was getting at though. Regardless, we need a functional web of social interconnection whenever we leave the cell of solitude, meditation, prayer, what have you. That web's not there on its own though, and I find myself hamfistedly trying to pretend it is, or weave together a few inches of it. Playing music with strangers has been the best catalyst for unexpected connection lately.Are you an Alaskan currently? I've never been, but I have a friend who moved out to Homer. He tells me it's one of the best places on earth.If you make your facebook ad, let me know. I'd like to see it. You should cc: the guy who wrote the guardian article too, if you do.https://hubski.com/pub/381227https://hubski.com/pub/381227Thank you! I'm glad you're enjoying it.As for your neighbors, have you tried sending them sexually suggestive gingerbread men in the mail? I am hard-pressed to think of anything that would delight me more than receiving erotic cookies from an anonymous source.https://hubski.com/pub/380704https://hubski.com/pub/380704Two Fridays ago, I settled on my house. Overcome with gratitude and happiness.Funny story. I was eagerly showing the house to a few of my friends the next evening when cop sirens and flashing red lights fill the street. We look amongst ourselves. Well, shit, we do live in Baltimore. There's always some foolishness bound to be going on. Then we hear a very stern sounding knock on my front door. Confused, I open it to greet my unexpected guests--Baltimore's finest. (Cue white privilege for not being immediately tackled to the ground.) "Sir, we're responding to a breaking and entering call, and possible house party." "Uhh... I closed on this home yesterday."Then my next door neighbor steps outside and starts apologizing profusely. She's been living in her house for fourteen years, the last year and half of which my house has stood empty. She had no idea the house had been sold. Earlier I had knocked on her door but she wasn't home yet. The cops thought it was a rather cute use of their time and greeted me to the neighborhood. All in all, I'm overjoyed. On the cusp of getting straight As this semester, my roommate is moving in just in time to help pay my mortgage, and I'm the block's most eligible bachelor. I'm less than two blocks away from one of Baltimore's biggest parks where I'm looking forward to a summer of soccer leagues and food truck rallies. Finishing and furnishing the basement will be my next project, so if anyone from Hubski wants to crash, have at it.https://hubski.com/pub/380322https://hubski.com/pub/380322“The thing I hate the most about advertising is that it attracts all the bright, creative and ambitious young people, leaving us mainly with the slow and self-obsessed to become our artists.. Modern art is a disaster area. Never in the field of human history has so much been used by so many to say so little.” - Banksy, AdBusters interview backinthedayThe issue is not that these choices are available, the issue is that these choices crowd out the sensible ones. There's a lot of fallacious product design in toothbrushes. At the same time, it makes sense to apply what we know about dental hygiene to what we know about human habit to what we know about materials science to what we know about merchandising because even an expensive toothbrush is what? $4? $5? That's before you get into the land of Sonicare and its ilk and there are justifications to that, too. I have a $140 toothbrush. It was recommended to me by my dentist over my $100 toothbrush because apparently I was brushing hard enough to require some repair at the gumline to the tune of $900 billed to my insurance. The difference? The new one tweedles at me when I brush too hard. First world problems? You betcha. Asymptotic improvement? Mos def. BUT it is innovation in pursuit of improvement. Dollar shave club, on the other hand, doesn't help you shave better. What it does is provide you access to bottom-of-the-barrel no-name Chinese blades at substantial markup to you. Yeah - a bag of Bic safety razors is like $3 for 24 or whatever so obviously you don't have to purchase that, either, but Unilever spent a billion dollars buying Dollar Shave Club instead of, I dunno, making better razors. Lather, rinse, repeat. You rightly state that you are not directly impacted by any of these deeply silly Silicon Valley choices but you are indirectly affected. As you state, you're a fan of Blue Apron - what if Silicon Valley spent $120m on improving the efficiency of produce delivery to wherever you are instead of $120m on ways to sell chopped fruits and vegetables for $10/lb? Henry Petroski has argued many times that necessity isn't the mother of invention, luxury is - we do not invent a fork because we cannot eat without one, we invent a fork because it's easier to eat with one. The inventor/manufacturer profits off of the increase of ease he provides us, and we pay him gladly. The argument put forth in the article (not as clearly as it could be, no doubt) is that the Silicon Valley business cycle is not focused on efficiency, it's focused on inefficiency and predation. And while this is not universally true, the argument for "disruption" is not "make the world a better place" it's "break laws and make money until they legislate you out of existence." I have thousands of hours of music on hard drives. I used to have hundreds of CDs. My access to music went up an order of magnitude with the advent of Napster... but I can't really say that MP3s improved the state of music. It used to be that technological innovation was largely in pursuit of quality-of-life improvement and that argument could easily be made about Napster et.al. However, the inefficiencies of the music market also provided a living for most of the people involved in its generation. And that's another issue - companies like RentBerry and Fiverr are, at base, eliminating inefficiencies. However, in a marketplace that's even a little unfair or uncompetitive, "inefficiencies" are often the profit of the disadvantaged. On a perfectly level playing field, assembly line workers in Detroit should have no problems competing with assembly line workers in Guadalajara. But.This article is annoying because it stands on the premise that someone offering a choice to you is the same as you being forced to participate, and that a choice you don't agree with is somehow this nefarious plot to screw your life up. Fiverr doesn't exist to destroy the middle class dream. It connects freelancers with people who hire them.Hi. Freelancer. Years of experience. Union member, skilled laborer. And where I work, the middle has dropped out. I'm one of the youngest people in my industry that I know of and my 20-year reunion was a while ago. See, used to be you started out as a gopher PA and then you became a set PA and then you picked up a skill and then you started making a little money and your network grew and you started making more money and eventually you had a wife and two kids and a house in the Valley. But now there's a sea of film school grads who can work for free because mommy and daddy understand that you have to do that for a while in order to get experience so they'll pay Janie's $1900/mo rent for a studio in Panorama City while she struggles for free until eventually it becomes clear that as soon as she starts to ask for money there's ten more Janies eager to take her place so eventually she's going to go back to live with her parents in Dayton and take orders at Applebee's while meanwhile, the guys that are actually hiring new kids who don't know what they're doing are generally doing it with their parents' money, too, and they're going to fail out within however long it takes for their folx to get sick of paying for their hobbies and in the meantime, we're all getting older and we're all hanging on to the gigs we have and the kids? The kids are not coming up because the opportunities that are available to them are a mirage. Make no mistake. I'm the other side of that divide. Comfortably. But the gig economy, in my industry at least, is a fucking meat grinder for those without protections. Multiply times everything.https://hubski.com/pub/380003https://hubski.com/pub/380003So a "fixed payment annuity" is effectively an agreement between you and whoever manages the annuity. The agreement says that if you make payments over the allotted time, when the annuity reaches maturity, the manager will pay you back. What's typical (what my pension looks like) is you work for a certain amount of time to be vested, then you contribute the requisite number of hours or days or years of employment, then when you've reached that number (and usually a prequalifying age), the annuity manager lets you flip the switch from "putting in" to "taking out" which you typically do until you die. My grandfather was a regional president of the AFL. He was a tool and die machinist, and then he was a union foreman. His pension kicked in at 65 and provided him with something like 75% of his salary until he died, and then it was supposed to provide his wife with 50% of his salary until she died. I think his other choice was 100% until he died, and then 25% to his wife until she died. That pension was written in the '40s, kicked in in the late '60s, and paid him until the early '90s. It's not atypical for the money that you get out of a pension will be more than the money you put into a pension. This shortfall is covered by the fact that the pension manager has your money now to pay you later so they can invest it, earn interest, make stock splits, etc etc etc. In other words, they're taking on the risk but also capturing any gains above and beyond what's necessary to pay out the pensions of the accounts under management.Now take me - I've been in my union since 2008. I got enough union work to start earning healthcare and start vesting in 2013. At the end of this year, I'll be eligible to actually get money out of my pension when I retire - but I'm a six figure guy and as it sits, I think my pension payout when I reach retirement age will be like $137 a month. Now - if I keep mixing high-budget full-pop network shows under my union contract for the next seventeen years, my payout will reach.... drumroll please... $837 a month.Now granted: That's nice money. But I earn more than that in a day every time I work on a holiday and once I retire, i won't be. And a lot of the reason is that the pension managers can't guarantee they'll make killer gains to cover the shortfall. A lot of the reason is medical plans. See, retirement and medical benefits are often mixed together and when the 'boomers were getting their rippin' pension and health plans set up in the late '60s/ early '70s......they weren't expecting to spend a factor of ten what they were currently spending. I've got great health insurance. It's good enough that I leave my family for three months a year to keep it. And COBRA on it is like $1800 a month. That's for three young, healthy people. Now - I got a buddy whose wife is currently dealing with early-onset Alzheimer's. I have another friend who has been dealing with skin cancer. And I have another friend who regularly tears himself up falling off of horses. And the medical plan pays out for all that. Combine that with the fact that it's gotten harder and harder to make the kind of gains that pension plans are used to. twenty fucking percent. And since like 2011 the interbank rate in the US has been close enough to zero that it might as well be nothing. The rest of the world? Something like 2/3rds of the world's currency was under negative interest rates for the past three years. And if your pension plan was set up on the assumption that it could make an easy 10% a year because it always had forever and ever amen, you have a massive pension shortfall.So that's pensions. You put a set amount of money in, you eventually take a set amount of money out, and the pension manager covers the shortfall by profiting off your contributions. Great to be a pension manager if that's easy, shitty to be a pension manager if it's hard, used to be easy, is now hard. Pension shortfalls 101.401(k)s? Those are just bank accounts. They're bank accounts with special tax status but they're just bank accounts. You put money in, your employer matches it, and you play the ponies. You get to see every month (or every second, depending on how interested you are) just how your 401(k) is doing and you get to rebalance it, reallocate it, contribute to it, draw it down, use it as collateral, tap into it under penalty, all that fun shit entirely on your own. If you don't have enough money in your 401(k) when it's time to retire, that shit's all on you - you should have saved more. You should have invested more wisely. Your employer has fuckall to do with it - it's their pension fund but it's your 401(k). If your pension is with CalPERS, you're fucked because they ran out of money. If your 401(k) was with Enron, you were fucked because you folded your retirement plan into a house of cards.. If you were a public worker, you had no choice other than what CalPERS invested in. If you worked for Enron you had all the choice in the world - but it seemed like the smart thing was to invest in your employer.Ironically enough, Steve Bannon blames the latter for his worldview.https://hubski.com/pub/379833https://hubski.com/pub/379833Okay. Look. I get it. Save the earth one cup at a time. Do right by your supply chain. Get the girl, kill the baddies and save the entire planet. And hooray for having your heart in the right place and sure - this is not a large trade organization and it doesn't have a lot of power so at least they're taking on what they can take on.But this whole paper is an excuse for inaction. Cliff's notes on Action Item 3, "Measure and Reduce your Carbon Footprint:" - Farmer Brothers (1800 employees, $240m sales) - Determined that 85% of their carbon emissions come from roasting coffee - Determined that 14% of their carbon emissions come from driving coffee - Determined that 1% of their carbon emissions come from being in business - So they got their engines certified clean idle - And bought some carbon certificates - To advance their goal of reducing their carbon emissions by 80% forty fucking years in the futureHow many carbon credits did they buy? So few it didn't even make their self-fellating annual report. And - and here's my beef - it wouldn't do fuckall about the future of coffee anyway.Your argument - more money in cows than in coffee. To acknowledge that briefly, ranching is generally done on public lands while farming is done on private but we'll ignore that. One cow takes about 1.3 acres per year and one cow is good for about 500lbs of trimmed beef (and byproducts). Argentinian beef trades wholesale for $330/kt (or so) or $330/2200lb or 15 cents a pound so your 1.3 acres is earning you 75 bucks or, wholesale, you're making $57 per acre. How 'bout coffee?I know a shit-ton less about coffee than you do. All I have available to me is public information. When I google "coffee yield per acre" I get an article that tells me traditional methods yield as little as 450lbs an acre while intensive farming can push that up to 3,000 lbs. So right there, I know that if a specialty coffee association member wants to make a difference, he needs to find a modern farm that isn't fucking around because apparently the agricultural multiplier is a factor of seven. But how much are we getting for a pound of coffee?Good thing your buddies at the SCAA are available to tell me. Looks like $1.75/lb. So even fucking around with shade-grown don't-care cherries-roasting-in-the-sun agriculture, a coffee plantation makes about a factor of ten over beef. But, of course, the capital expenditures to plant an acre of coffee and raise it to harvest are intense and no doubt reflected in that. So I come back to this point - the links in the paper you shared all indicate that a coffee plantation is good for 30-50 years. They also indicate that 50 years from now, coffee will be coming from very different places. And digging into it a little more, it becomes obvious that an enterprising coffee roaster that actually wanted to make a difference (as opposed to sit around the tradegroup campfire singing koom bay yah) might get involved with some agricultural NGOs attempting to get ahead of the production curve on a crop that has a heavy sunk cost, an admirable response to intensive agriculture and the demand curve of a luxury item.THEIR REPORT SHOULD BE BETTER THAN THIS.Because see, if southern Mexico is currently the world's 8th largest arabica producer, I'ma guess that in 50 years south-central Mexico is gonna be the world's 8th largest arabica producer and if white-boy me can have some influence now that pushes things closer to the 3,000lb/acre number than the 450lb/acre number, FUCKIN'A PUT THAT SHIT IN WRITING.OVER THE NEXT 25 TO 30 YEARS, SALES OF TIMBER HARVESTED SUSTAINABLY ARE ESTIMATED TO GENERATE APPROXIMATELY U.S. $1,264,820 IN SUPPLEMENTAL INCOME TO THE PARTICIPATING COFFEE FARMERSAt the most, that's the equivalent of 50 acres of coffee. That's a legit "who gives a fuck" statistic. But your trade group gave it a quarter of a page. I drink coffee. I like it. I want to keep doing it. And for fuck's sake, if your industry is worrying about 50% of the available land going away in the next 50 years, fuckin' do something about it. IMPORTERS AND EXPORTERS.Minimize travelling and transport distances. Choose airlines with green travel credentials and choose economy class.If you're worried about the carbon imprint of your ass in business class, you're worrying about the wrong damn thing. I mean - sure. Maybe you feel better riding in economy class because your tradegroup told you to. But I'd rather know that you're taking steps to not burn more of the Amazon.And this paper says fuckall about the Amazon.https://hubski.com/pub/379059https://hubski.com/pub/379059hey perhaps more importantly I GOT AN ETSY STORE OPEN AGAINhttps://www.etsy.com/shop/BroganBooks?ref=hdr Got 9 listings up as of this AM but something like 5 additional book styles/covers need to be added before my total inventory's represented. What I'm saying is hit that F5 through the day and through tomorrow too and get me some pagevyaaas. Spend some money. Spam people with my link. And in May I'll have a vendor table at a little local art hall event one of the bars I like holds every month. That is far scarier than the Etsy shop, fwiw. But I'm committed. Eek.https://hubski.com/pub/378927https://hubski.com/pub/378927There's some good solid advice in there. And I think I can add something valuable to what you said: Perspective.You don't hear people 30-plus years old asking this question. Because they realize it isn't the right question to ask. By the time you are in your 30's, pretty much nobody you know will be working in the field/job that is written on their college degree.Life is a river. You start off trying to build a dam, and make the river conform to your view of what it should look like. But water is consistent, persistent, strong, and devious. Your every effort to make life conform to your view will fail, and eventually you will get swept downstream.Some people try to stop. They bash into rocks. They grasp at low-hanging branches and try to stop the water from dragging them further downstream.Other people go "woohoo! whitewater rafting!!" and look downstream and try to pick a line that looks like the most fun.These are the people who inspire you. They are the people enjoying life, and who seem to have amazing opportunities drop in their lap.Schooling, clubs, hobbies, and interests are what you build your boat out of.Then you get thrown into the water and head downstream.What skills do you have? Do you communicate well with other people? Do you like to learn? Do you keep your word? Are you an enjoyable person to be around?Then your boat will float, and you will find the journey enjoyable. The more flexible and amenable you are to life and it's ever-changing dynamics, the more opportunities that will be presented to you, and the more chances you will have to find something that you truly enjoy.The less flexible, personable, pleasant you are, the less opportunities will come up. Because you are narrowly skilled, and unpleasant to be around, and therefore fit into only a small portion of the available roles out there in the world.From where I'm sitting, just short of 50 years old, I can tell you that the river widens, slows, and empties into a big placid lake, where you can kinda paddle wherever you want. If you built a good boat.I don't even recall all the jobs I have had, the places I have worked, the people I have fallen in and out of love with... all that is back there, up the hill, in the rapids on that river somewhere.Looking back up that river, I can see the path I took now, but it was not apparent to me at the time. I was simply presented with interesting opportunities because I had a wide range of skills, I was funny, and people liked talking to me. They liked having me around, so they would overlook any technical/skills limitations, and just said, "Eh. You'll learn it on the job. It isn't hard."This is, of course, my advice based on my experience.Like RD95 says, life isn't lived in a house you built in college; it is a long series of building projects that you live within while building. Some rooms you may never visit again. Some you may crack the door open 30 years later and find a new passion for, and others you may visit every single day.The only constant is change. Either find a way to embrace that, or live frustrated for the rest of your life.https://hubski.com/pub/378924https://hubski.com/pub/378924SHIT'S POPPIN'I have a temp job that fulfills almost all the requirements I was looking for last week - consistent schedule, paid breaks, near where I live, reasonable pay, and a place to sit, if I want to. It's warehouse work, and I'm pretty good at it.But more importantly, I got an interview for that job I really fucking wanted. The one over here, the one I thought I was unqualified for. I requested to be the first interview of the day, and they have about 10 other people they're considering for the job. I don't own a jacket. I don't own a white shirt - though I think I may make one tonight after work. I'm really nervous, but I feel good about the possibility of working a job that I both like and think is important.----------Also, the album is unfortunately not coming out on the 15th. Job hunting has been an all-consuming affair. Sometime this month, though.EDIT: Interview went well! They're doing a second set of interviews next week, should be hearing back this weekend about whether they want me to come in again.https://hubski.com/pub/378914https://hubski.com/pub/378914Pronoia: the belief that the universe is conspiring in your favour.I had to look it up. I'm a little proanoid, but I mostly believe you have to take the first steps to change your life. Then the universe will rush in to help.https://hubski.com/pub/378641https://hubski.com/pub/378641Ignoring the morality of eating animals, on the subject of the animals, raising animals as/for food is horrible for the environment.Cows/pigs/ships contaminate water sources.Mammals fart, which in big enough numbers is pushing global warming.The resources used to prepare one meal from an animal can be used to make up-to 100 meals from plants.This effects everyone, no one is above global warming, yea the poor will be screwed more then the rich, but everyone are screwed. So avoiding eating animals for this reason alone in your self interest (unless you are going to die soon).Food prices mostly affect poor people, and less so in richer countries, those that can afford to eat enough meat make global changes in the economy will be effected by it, so it goes to morality (do you care that your enjoyment of eating dead animals might starve someone to death ?).There is also the subject of heart problems and colon cancer, you are less likely to die from them if you go vegan.I think those are the main topics of eating animals, from there it's a personal choice, do I care about my heart ? do I care about global warming ? people less fortunate then me ? can I handle the social aspects of going vegan ? can I handle the mental changes required to change my diet ?https://hubski.com/pub/378288https://hubski.com/pub/378288I call Scotland "dude" because I'm from California, and she and I have that kind of comfort in our relationship.For the record, I consider "dude" to be gender neutral ;)The real question is, am I rude or inconsiderate or diminishing if I don't remember your gender preference and preferred pronoun to put in front of "coffeesp00ns"? I'm honestly asking. I have no idea of ooli or War or rd95 or snoodog's gender, and only know Elizabeth's and Lil's because of their names, and know kleinbl00's because I know the guy in person.IMO, no, you're not being inconsiderate. The nature of online discourse means that gender is generally a lot less relevant unless it is inherently a part of the topic being discussed - which is how it should be IRL as well. If we were in public, however, and I had spoken with you and told you the pronouns I wanted you to use, and presented as female, and you still used "he/him" for me, I'd probably be seriously uncomfortable.The most important thing to do? If you don't know - ASK. I have never met a trans person who would be more upset by you asking their gender than they would be by you getting their gender wrong. And if you mess it up the second time around, just correct and don't make a big deal - We're way more scared than you are.I do think it's a good case of due diligence to look up some of the linguistics behind trans stuff, just because It's not really going away any time soon so far as i can see. So, like email and internet and cell phone, it's something we all have to learn. the same thing might become the case if the community and/or english scholars can decide on what gender neutral pronoun to use (probably singular they because our language already sort of supports it - like taking advantage of a weird compatibility in a program).So here's a basic rundown on some stuff that, if you know, makes wading through conversations Transgender person - Someone whose gender differs from the one their doctor put on their birth certificate.Trans(gender) woman - Someone who previously used he/him pronouns who now uses she/her pronouns. That person could have been assigned male by their doctor at birth, or possibly had unclear genitalia at birth and was raised as a male. Regardless, they now will likely be going by female pronouns.Trans(gender) man - Someone who previously used she/her pronouns who now uses he/him pronouns. That person could have been assigned female by their doctor at birth, or possibly had unclear genitalia at birth and was raised as a female. Regardless, they now will likely be going by male pronouns.genderqueer - One of many words used to describe people who don't feel strongly as either male or female. An example might be someone who dresses very androgynously and uses they/them pronouns.Cisgender - Cis is the opposite of the latin Trans - Cisalpine Gaul, for example, meaning the area of Gaul on the Roman side of the Alps, and Trans Atlantic meaning across the Atlantic Ocean. A Cisgender person is someone whose gender is the same as the one the doctor put on their birth certificate. That means that a cisgender man will likely, but not exclusively have XY chromosomes and a cisgender woman will likely, but not exclusively have XX chromosomes. Chromosomes, and genetics, are complicated.I gotta wonder if the gendering of anybody is really of material valueI mean, in a perfect world gender wouldn't be a factor in how we talk about each other. Men and women would exist perfectly equally. Trans people would still exist, but their taking of hormones to change their body wouldn't be a social issue, just a private one. However, we don't live in that world. We live in a world where we put people into boxes because humans like little tidy boxes. Turns out that the world of human gender doesn't fit into our two box system of male and female, or even into some other cultures' Three gender box (though more boxes is likely better). So we are currently at a cultural turning point where we have to deal with trans people again. It's happened before (see the Weimar Republic for a recent example), and our choice has been to sweep trans people under the rug - Hopefully we can prevent that from happening again and start to change the way we look at gender.Hope some of this helps.https://hubski.com/pub/378243https://hubski.com/pub/378243We had our first birth in the birth center last night. Success. And we get to bill for nitrous. That means the infernal machine needs to be used only nineteen more times to pay for itself. My daughter, on the other hand, called for attention every time I was about to fall asleep for the first two hours and then woke up from a screaming, bawling nightmare. My wife is asleep in the other room which prevents me from finishing the background pass on the not-very-good movie, unless I put on headphones, which I hate doing when I'm doing surround work. Our burn rate is a few thousand dollars higher per month than we anticipated, due entirely to construction delays. This means it will be longer before the center is profitable. Nonetheless, confidence is high. My wife pointed out last night that it was effectively equivalent to me putting her through college all over again. This morning I'm mulling over the fact that aside from a brief, glorious nine months between relationships in 2002, and a semi-refreshing, maybe-we'll-make-it period of about a year before we had our daughter, I have given over the overwhelming majority of my earnings to the care of others for more than 20 years now. I'm partly bitter about that and partly contemplative. A friend of mine was in Variety on Friday because he's got a show set up with Granada and Netflix. He, of course, came to LA about a year after I did. Then his wife (whose family is not just wealthy, they're royal) supported him while he did free work for two solid years, had two kids, went through treatment twice and lived i a $4k/mo apartment while we were grinding dried placentas to make ends meet. They don't tell you that: if you're trying to break in while earning a living, you're breaking in against dilettantes with zero cost-of-failure and infinite hang-time. Then Sunday I discovered that another below-the-line friend had died of a heart attack at 36. It's all about anchoring, I guess. I've got a tree surgeon coming over to tell me what it's going to cost to make sure the three massive firs in the back don't fall on the house. I'm hoping I can afford it. At the same time I was talking to the neighbor Sunday; her roof is leaking because she got a deal from another neighbor's then-boyfriend but he's a junkie now so whatever warranty there was, yeah notsomuch anymore. Meanwhile they're building out, not up, because it's cheaper, because there's seven of them in there, six adults, and they've got one bathroom and fewer square feet than we do, and one of them is in a wheelchair. But she's on 100% disability, her daughter is on 100% disability, her son works two jobs, both of which are custodial, her one grandson got thrown out of his mom's house for fighting and her other grandson - He was howling Sunday. Not sure why. It was dark, there was lots of shouting. We're debating calling CPS. He hangs out with me but he's rough. He's eight and enjoys the company of my 4-year-old daughter who is brighter than him by far. He's on the spectrum among other things and he breaks stuff. We let him play with our daughter out doors but he's not allowed in our house unless one of his family members are there. And we're crowded with three people and all our shit in this house but fuckin'A we can still park a car in the garage. They've got seven people in there and I don't even know who the seventh is.They're building out. They're getting a loan. The contractor is a friend of a friend which worked out oh-so-well last time, right? There's seven of them, two fixed incomes and maybe three jobs between them, none of which make much money. I mean, they've got a blue tarp keeping the rain off half the house (not the roof leak; apparently that's just sort of happening without any remediation). Anchoring. I don't have a blue tarp keeping the rain out of the family room, my toilet-to-person ratio is 1.5, and we have retirement savings as if we were 20 years older than we are now. And I'm not in Variety but I'm not in the ground, either. And as formidable as our burn rate is, we fuckin' made it this month.This month, anyway.https://hubski.com/pub/377512https://hubski.com/pub/377512Hell yes kb! (almost sent this using your actual name, such was my excitement. You have been working so hard towards this opening. It's phenomenal to see someone set a goal as lofty as this one and achieve it. I know how much it takes to accomplish such things. It's Herculean. I read below that you are the one that took the photos for the center's art. They're amazing. Also, in a previous photo, I saw the living wall. -Well done!Hell, I'd have a baby there. Maybe I'll swing by in October with my wife. Turns out, we have a daughter on the way ;-)https://hubski.com/pub/377471https://hubski.com/pub/377471Birth center is donezo. I mean, there's a couple little things. Gotta put up some blinds. Need to replace a doorknob. One counter still needs a backsplash. But we spent $1500 on catering for 50 people at the open house Saturday and after three hours we had eight rolls of mortadella, a couple polenta cakes and about a melon's worth of honeydew.Also got my call for work this summer, so our financial future is secure while we wait for, oh, $1500 worth of catering to come back to us as goodwill and consumer interest.Also pulled off the taxes such that we won't starve prior to work starting again, was able to pay my daughter's tuition in full, was able to pay the accountants and was able to set money aside for retirement for me and the wifey for the first time since 2005 so that's nice. I also managed, through sheer blind luck and mk's tutelage, to leverage bitcoin and Ethereum such that... well, I'm pleased with the current price and guardedly optimistic as to its trajectory. We should be starving to death right now and we're not. We might be sitting on a half million dollars' worth of leverage but apparently that's between a third and a quarter of where we'd be with a dental clinic. I might be driving a '95 Dodge, my daughter's room might be directly across the hall from mine and I might not be sure if we can afford storm windows this spring but fuckin'A I have a reasonable expectation that whatever windows we've got, I'll still own their frames next year. My insurance is good enough that I have a nutritionist and a physical therapist, and my daughter is going to have a shitty week because she's got shots tomorrow and the dentist friday. I also have a yoga instructor. Mine is a pampered fucking lifestyle. If my biggest complaint is that I'm now eating sixteen servings of fresh vegetables a day I'm neck deep in white people problems. I dunno. You're supposed to be thankful in November. That's always seemed weird to me because that's right about the time you're going into ridiculous debt buying shit people don't need and busily accomplishing fuckall until January. For me, it's always been getting through February.We're cooking the second 3lb chunk of corned beef for my father-in-law's birthday tomorrow. That means i will make Irish Tacos for the second time in as many weeks because they're fucking delicious.https://hubski.com/pub/376992https://hubski.com/pub/376992This was offputting. It drips with disdain. I understand that he's trying to make a political point, but way to do that by being an arrogant tool to the entire state of South Dakota. The best compliment he can come up with in the whole thing is "It was as beautiful as any land I’ve ever seen". That's the compliment equivalent of "meh" while looking down your nose. I've been to South Dakota, and yeah, Mt. Rushmore is kind of strange. "The hubris of man" and all. But? Custer's a great little town, and it's an excellent base of operations to see the state. There's more than a freakin' Pizza Hut there. Try out Wall Drug. Custer SP is quite beautiful. There's Pipestone. There's Badlands. There's Teddy Roosevelt NP. South Dakota is a treasure trove of nature's wonders. Instead of appreciating any of this, our narrator tosses his backhanded compliment out and spills more words talking about the local fauna come begging to lick the salt off his car. Does he ever mention another human being outside of his family unit? Is he that self-absorbed? If I was to give Mr. Anderson some polite advice, I'd say:- Go on your trip in season, because things will be open.- If you want to actually see things, do some research and take some time to get out of your car and take a hike. - Put down your electronics, and please make your kids do the same. If they're unshackled from their screens for a while, they might actually look around them, and appreciate it. They should understand how fortunate they are to be able to go on such a trip to such a beautiful area of the country. If all they do is Snapchat, you've wasted all your money getting them there. - Check your preconceptions at the door and talk to people.https://hubski.com/pub/376930https://hubski.com/pub/376930Congratulations! You've shown that you care enough about human life that you started a homicide statistic with "lol"! You definitely seem like you do give your time supplying food to the homeless, or volunteering on a suicide hotline, and don't just use the excuse of "this isn't an issue that directly affects me" to avoid actually helping anybody not related to you by blood. I'm sorry that not enough trans people are dying to warrant your empathy - let's hope it stays that way.Tell me, how are you fighting the Opioid epidemic in America? What are some concrete steps I, as a citizen, can take to stop the deaths of 33,000 of my peers? I certainly don't know anyone who is addicted to prescription pills, so by your reasoning I have no reason to care about it - that's just not something which affects me. I do know a young trans woman who was beaten to within an inch of her life in an alley, but hey, my number's smaller than yours, I should care about your thing instead - fuck her statistically insignificant life!See, here's the thing about proportions: they tend to point to something larger than themselves. If you actually did give your time to helping the homeless, you would find that between 10-20 of those 50 people might be gay or trans (and before you have a chance - I know I linked to a liberal rag and you are going to debate the numbers, I don't particularly have the energy to find better sources) - a number which is disproportionately high. Or if you actually spent your time with opium addicts, you would find that, again, a disproportionately high amount of them are gay or trans. And do I even have to tell you how many gay and trans people would be calling you on that suicide hotline?I get it, you don't know any trans people, but some of us do. Some of us may even want to start a family with the trans man they've been dating for 5 years - a thing that becomes significantly harder if he's dead. I completely agree that there is a finite amount of energy that we can all channel to causes that we deem to be important - I just hope that you're channeling yours towards something bigger than complaining about people mourning the dead.EDIT: I'm sorry that this is pretty aggressive, I don't mean it as a personal attack - in all seriousness, I have no doubts that you are a good person, and I get where you are coming from. This is just an issue that hits really close to home.https://hubski.com/pub/376900https://hubski.com/pub/376900https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_People_of_the_Abysshttps://hubski.com/pub/376721https://hubski.com/pub/376721https://hubski.com/pub/375750https://hubski.com/pub/375750The recent half of the family came over to get the hell out of Ireland when the Brits starved people intentionally, then sort-of intentionally, sort of accidentally started a religious civil war. According to the family bible, they stayed with black families that introduced them to Jewish people before they noped-the-hell-out of NYC and Boston in the 1830's. They ended up in Philly just in time to realize they had to go west. They kept a list of names of people that helped them out along the way and ended up mining in the Rocky Mountains when the Civil War started.The father of one of the families notes in the margins of Romans 14 and not sure why this stuck with me, but in shaky pen was written: Hebrew fed me beef. First in my years eating flesh of cattle.The older men in the group had to be in their 40's when they came over, so this was a 50ish year old man writing this statement. I wonder how many more Irish immigrants never ate cow/beef until they came to the US and started working here.