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Thursday, June 20, 2013

E is for Entropy

Chaos. Anarchy. Free will. They give entropy a very bad name.

There are many applications to entropy in terms of thermodynamics and even information theory, but I am naïve enough to choose my own take on the subject.

Entropy is basically how undesired counters the desired...and it fascinates us, whatever form it takes because it reminds us that we are not in control.

You could say it's the Ying to a Yang, the Joker to the Batman, Kryptonite to Superman...the shit on your doorstep that ruins a perfect day (like a last-minute goal that turns your draw to a loss on PS3...not like I'd know anything about that. Ahem).

But I believe that Entropy is more than a pothole on a good road. I think it the universal humbler of human assumption. We feel the need to be in control, to be our own gods, to have everything right where we want it...we feel the need to support a 'comforting lie'. The truth is bitter, but not defeating.

When Entropy hits us, it may or may not give advanced warning (it can be impolite that way), but it is not an enemy. It isn't a friend either. It is whatever we want it to be.

When I learned that my friend 'Dolu' died, I was a few days late in hearing about it. When my friend Kunmi died the morning I was scheduled to visit him at the hospital. When my daughter was born. When my time with team Ghenghen was up. When my girlfriend left me for my friend. When my plan to get married bowed to the realities of a misalignment of personalities. When my house caught fire in the middle of costing a c-section.

All of these sentences are where Entropy came into my life to rip the already frayed cords of predictability in my life...I paused. I realised Entropy did not do these things to me. In my perspective, it did them 'for' me to see that I am not the only person in my life. That my life is not the only important one in the world. That the truth is more than convenient facts that have been put together by the cleverest minds in the world over the centuries.

Dolu died. Kunmi died. My daughter was born. Team Ghenghen is not my place. My girlfriend was looking to be happier. Dating is more about knowing who you won't marry than finding who you will. Sometimes things have to burn down so you can build higher and better next time.

These things did not just happen to me alone. Things took shape in ways I was not prepared for...and I've grown broader shoulders by bearing these 'strange weights'.

I visit gravesides with more ease now. My daughter's smile and energy promise 'interesting times'. I look back on the Ghenghen in my time and I look forward to hearing wackier episodes. I enjoy working projects with my ex-girlfriend. I hold my ex-fiancé with more regard and respect now than before...and I love easier and wiser. I've got shelves done for my 2,000+ books.

Entropy is not the enemy. Chaos is the name we give when we aren't prepared for or even interested in growing up to changing challenges.

Entropy is anarchy is when we find that people won't bend to our will, even when we have great plans for them, but are unable or unwilling to have them join in our will by speaking their language.

Free will is when people decide to be people and dare limits that others would be more comfortable to ignore. This isn't the same as waving their 'free will' in the faces of others as if to say 'I must trend by force'. That's just tired and crippled behaviour.

So please, when you're about to get upset because Chaos, Anarchy, or Free will bump your day...it is only the enemy if it actually 'hurts' people, not just your ego or your insatiable need to be a 'god' in your world.

Did I make sense? Do I make sense? Should I make sense? Must I make sense? Or am I Entropy's buddy by night, enemy by day, and ambivalent observer by afternoon? Or do I really need to sleep right now?...meh


It is not enough to have a good mind. The main thing is to use it well -- Rene Descartes

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

D is for Declaration

Of all the powers Queen Elizabeth II gas been stripped of, she can still declare war.

Declare. A powerful word watered down by school prefects and distrusting figures of authority. We think it is just about contraband and erotica. That's just the fringe.

I crave your indulgence to use this post to declare my position on some very important things in my life. They will not carry the same weight for everyone. They certainly aren't for entertainment. They are my words that I will be held to. The best part? There is no fear or hesitation. Just truth.

Here goes...

I am a man (this goes beyond the flesh or general philosophy).

I am heterosexual (I enjoy the company of women and my parts work best with theirs).

I am fallible (to fail is human, to learn from failure is wise, to act on what you learned...this is boldness).

I am meek (that means teachable or ready to learn. It does not mean bitch)

I am a son and a brother (to family within and beyond blood).

I am a father (so far of a girl who mirrors me even at 3 months of age).

I am a creative (to be clear, I use the word with the same gravity I would use my father's first name).

I am a writer before all other things (words have been my companions since I was 3 and they hold more meaning inbetween the lines as a lady's dress holds more underneath).

I am humbled by my work (from Fourth Day to the extraordinary opportunity to post on the Alchemist's corner to Our Own Area cartoons...I still feel privileged rather than proud)

I appreciate the creative efforts of my peers and my betters (it doesn't have to connect with me before I respect your efforts).

I am a believer (the word christian was coined by non-believers to 'box' followers of Christ Jesus.)

I am biased to honesty, to truth (they are not the same thing), and to a mind ready to learn (the other extreme isn't my type of company).

I am inner-directed (the opinions of men are at best speculative as we are all subjective to our individual selves, yet objective to others).

I can't respect criticism that's coloured with destroying other people (it is always easier to hurt than to heal).

I will not judge another person (it is like criticising a war veteran who had to kill. He did the best he could with what he knew. Hindsight is not incriminating evidence. War criminals are not in the same class).

I will not respect any person who hates (there are few exceptions as very often those who think they hate shrink back in the face of the real thing).

I am loyal (but not a fool. People quit on people in places where promises of future gain cannot reach).

I am kind, not nice (I'd rather admit I can't help than say I can and not follow through).

I am a lone wolf (perhaps this is what makes marriage difficult for me to enter into. I hate being tested. I know the other person will fail & I can't bend or break that part of me).

I am loving (every one farts, but that's not the basis for relevance is it? No one is totally useless).

I work hard (even if it all comes to ash, having given my best is guaranteed to get back up and give even better).

I am not a baby-daddy (that's a term reserved for men who feel dishonored or cheated by the continuation of life. Such men are right...married or not)

I am a fan of Batman (Superman is cool, if you think the advice of an invulnerable alien carries more weight than the example of the mortal he respects...meh)

I am not a politician (I'm too honest for my own good. I'd be in trouble on my first day).

I am not a pervert (a freak, yes. A pervert however is the darker side that men would rather condemn than understand...basically because they fear to see their reflection in the condemned)

I love music (Roald Dahl said music is a language only the sould understands)

I am done...not done for, just done with this post.

P. S. The girls have fathers, not 'daddies' or 'sperm-donors'.
It is not enough to have a good mind. The main thing is to use it well -- Rene Descartes

C is for Claudius

For every 10 abnormal kids, there is a genius in hiding. Einstein didn't speak till he was 4. Steve Jobs was an arab (or persian) orphan in the United States. Tom Cruise was dyslexic. Where are all the other normal kids they grew up with?

Claudius was a cripple, a stammerer, and thus the least likely of his family to attain greatness by any means other than association.

Germany is named after his brother Germanicus who conquered the 'barbarian hordes' that lived there.

His nephew Caligula became Ceaser of Rome after Octavian (later known as Augustus Ceaser...he's the kid who became a man between seasons 1 & 2 of the hit series Rome). Caligula had a penchant for murder...well, it was more like a proclivity as he liked to see people die close-up and personal. It did not pay to be close to him.

History doesn't honor any of the Ceasers of Rome as much as Julius Ceaser, but that's a long boring story.

The thing is Claudius 'played' the invalid fool, much like the dwarf of The Game of Thrones, except he stammered, so he had no clever words.

If his nephew asked ridiculous questions, he gave even more ridiculous answers and this made Caligula feel very clever and very safe with him. Very safe was very important.

Herod Agrippa (the dude that died of instant maggot infestation in the bible) was one of the few who was patient enough to catch the genius hiding behind stuttered words. They were friends.

He was the first person to congratulate him when he became Ceaser by default when Caligula came down with a severe case of Spear-poisoning when his Tiger got tired of him.

There is genius in patience as I will expound.

Caligula inherited 'The Tiger'. They were the most effective body-guards in ancient times. They wore black cloaks and kept their hands on the hilt of their swords...at all times. Any man who came at the Ceaser with murderous intent would be reduced to bleeding meat in under 15 seconds (it sounds easy from watching movies, but in real life it is not).

Caligula was at an event and seated in the VIP box. Under him, inane executions, mass slaughter and myriad moments of unguarded insanity had occurred (he once divirgined a couple at their wedding feast, in front of all of their guests, because he was Ceaser and it seemed pretty novel to him). One of the bodyguards then said,"*#ck this guy", and threw a spear into the direction of Caligula's torso. Safe to say he didn't make it. They then beheaded his wife and smashed his daughter's head against a marble wall.

Caligula was then made Emperor and Protector of Rome.

Did he make an outstanding Emperor? Well if you compare the Ceaser before him and the Ceaser after him (Emperor Nero was his heir), Caligula was a pleasant respite from the madness of the Roman court.

That's the C.

P. S. Maybe I should have made it Comparative rather than Caligula...meh
It is not enough to have a good mind. The main thing is to use it well -- Rene Descartes