22 June 2009

I was shot with a nail-gun, and it wasn't that bad

Today, as i was continuing to assist in the clintonSeeger's basement project, i was unexpectedly shot in the back. It had little to do with my aces over eights, Russ (my Jedi-Master-Contractor) assured me it was an accident. It hurt for a moment, didn't break the skin (it hit me flat - i was 5 yards away, or so). After being shot, verifying that the nail, in fact, didn't go in, and deciding i was alright, i started reflecting on my summer a bit.

During the past four weeks I have forgone (for the most part, sorry Lane, sorry Peter) my life of the mind in favor of a life of the hand... of the back. Familial obligation has dictated my summer, thus far, in a direction of hard labor... After flooding for the first time in 25 years, my parents' basement is going through a fundamental remodel. After installing a couple of sump pumps and a tile drainage system, the whole space is being re-created and I've been allowed to play along. I've framed walls (almost shooting a nail through my finger in the process), built soffits, and installed wiring. The day Rick shot a nail through Russ' finger (i know, it seems like a theme) i stood amazed as we neglected to call an ambulance or bring someone to the Emergency Room, and instead watched Russ tape paper towels around his finger with electrical tape and "call it good" (that night, he hit 4 home runs in his softball league).

This series of events got me to thinking about relative genetic makeups... (which might have brought me to a reminiscence of a certain trip to Alabama {not to mention a certain day of SeegerOlympic Events, which inexplicably occurred}, but that's the story for another day). I am, decidedly, not of 'tough breeding', but i think there is something to me that makes me a good sufferer (historically, some of the best sufferers i can think of {people who really don't seem to take it too bad when things go wrong} are Dave Wake, Walter Benjamin, and, well, i dunno, someone else.)

Clearly, my breed are not good sufferers, but somehow, i feel myself to be an adequate sufferer... not only in terms of actual suck-i-ness endured, but also the idea of physical pain... I'm not sure, but somehow, i feel myself 'greater than the sum of my parts.' I don't want it to seem arrogant, and i'm sure there are 'pain-factors' that will equalize this thinking, but just generally, when i picture myself in a time of true calling (any time other than now, other than a time of true reclination is a time of 'calling')...
I guess what i'm seeing is a lack of 'now' in anyone's time. Before now... there was always a possibility of something else... something that meant something... Nazis or Racists or... well... Communists... Now there are Terrorists... but they look like anyone (except they don't, right), but no longer are there real terrorists... as we know...

04 June 2009

The Problem is that we call them "Slower Traffic"

As i've been driving back & forth between Clinton & Milwaukee over the past few weeks (I'm helping re-do my parent's basement), i've noticed the

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December 2017
This was planned to a post that i am still somewhat interested in.  "Slower Traffic Keep Right" signs are a challenge, an affront really to drivers, particularly those who are pre-disposed to take umbrage.

Driving is an interesting social phenomenon.  It's a daily interaction we have with hundreds (or sometimes even thousands) of people each day, but we never meet them and most of the time never see them.

I read a comment by Elon Musk lately about why people hate mass transit (this in relation to his Boring Company) where he said that being together in a common space with a bunch of strangers was weird and also someone could be a serial killer sitting next to you and you wouldn't know it.  Of course, this is also true of public spaces in general, and generally mitigated by the fact that we have a civilization.

Traffic, though - it's like steampunk Twitter...  Anonymous interaction with many strangers per day.  People behave badly - in ways they likely wouldn't if they had to actually look the people in the eyes when they cut them off or assumed right of way dubiously.

I remember driving through Kentucky once, and seeing a sign that said the left lane was for passing only, which i really liked.  Rather than challenge a driver - "pshaw, you're not fast enough to be in the left lane" - they restrict why you can be in the left lane.  In Europe, they don't have to tell driver's these things, because there is a mutual recognition and appreciation for the humanity of others...
Here in the States, we still need these friendly reminders, because while were trying to have a civilization here... it's a work in progress.