on absence*

Very little this weekend worth reporting on. Not to say I didn’t do anything; just to say that none of it was terribly exciting. I did clean the house, which made me proud of myself. I also watched Match Point with a handful of my colleagues. It’s morally reprehensible and very, very sexy; I tend to agree with Anthony Lane’s assessment that you can’t help sympathizing with the killer, no matter how much of a arrogant, womanizing bastard he is. I found myself smiling at the end, despite the moral reprehensibility, from the sheer ludicrousness of it all.

I also watched I, Robot thanks to Netflix; it was awful. I suppose I should have known better.
Today was blah. I apparently turned off my alarm in my sleep — go me! — and so woke up with no time to do anything except take a shower & run to work. This was all well and good as the next two hours were just staying awake through meeting, but I found that the rest of the day was shot. It was a perfect afternoon to get work done; I was off the desk, it was raining out, I was curled up with coffee in my office — and yet, of course, I couldn’t concentrate on anything. Suckitude.
All my mental energy, outside of work, has been going into wiki stuff the last few days; not the best of all possible worlds, but what has to be done has to be done.** Besides, I’m starting to get nervous about my presentation.
Perhaps part of why I am so grumpy is I started reading The Red and the Black, which I am not finding particularly enjoyable. It has that peculiar continental modernist quality of making all the main characters thoroughly unpleasant, whether they objectively are or not. I’m only a few chapters in but I’m not sure I can stomach it, though I am somewhat intrigued by the story. Perhaps it’s the translation. I need to find a novel that’s soothing and enjoyable; maybe I need to take a chaser of Terry Pratchett in between my classic novels.

Other reading news: Finally finished Tom Jones, which I want to write about indepth as it was grand; nearly done with a book about the development of Linux, which even though it’s rather a puff piece I’m enjoying and learning a lot from. My knowledge of open-source is strangely fractured and incomplete; half of what I know because I’ve looked into it and the other half I’ve heard in conversation but the better part of the open-source universe I’m completely ignorant of.*** At any rate this book is helping me put together the pieces.

Finally, I’ve been reading Raymond Carver’s extraordinarily brilliant collection Short Cuts, but only at the laundrymat. I can get through a couple of stories in a dryer cycle. While some might consider this an odd choice of venues, I’ve found it completely appropriate, considering the subject matter, and it means that doing the laundry — a chore I hate — has taken on an oddly-hued, poetic quality.

I’m also starting to read Peter Morville’s Ambient Findability, which I will be reviewing.****

God, no wonder I’m depressed*****. Back to the Pratchett, I suppose.
Tommorow: another day, another few hours of pretending I know what I’m doing.****** I should get some sleep.

*Not to be confused with absinthe, sadly.

**This means I haven’t been keeping up with everyone’s journals; please report any extraordinary news to my email.

*** Though I’ve been an impostor in open-source circles for a long time. And I want this job.

**** Possibly even for publication!

***** The problem with me being depressed is I’m too self-analytical; I know why, how, probably how to fix it, precisely why I’m not doing those things, and why this is ironic, given my history of counselling friends and loved ones and pontificating about achieving happiness. I can’t just wallow in self-pity in peace; I have to analyze it to death, as well, and then attempt to go back to wallowing with the uncomfortable knowledge that I could be doing something else if I weren’t so bloody tired all the time (a symptom, no doubt, of depression).

****** A friend and I got into a discussion about having children, and the appropriate age to do so, the other night; all I can say is gods I’m glad I don’t have a child just now, especially not a kid from all the times in my foolish youth when I might have produced one through carelessness — I barely know what to do with myself these days. I shudder at the impeding Supreme Court doom; how a man can make the decision about abortion in good conscience is something I’ll never understand. Law legislates morality, and morality is based on shared experience; both men and women can experience pain, or revenge, or loss. But no man can experience pregnancy, can experience the earth opening up underneath their feet in a pit of futures so unimaginable, so terrible. I pretend I know what I’m doing for myself, but how could I possibly pretend for someone else as well?

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