Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Scientist as Rebel

One of the books I'm reading right now is The Scientist as Rebel by Freeman Dyson. For those of you who have never heard of him, he's a very interesting guy. He's a physicist and a mathmetician, and he talks a lot about political, economic, and social issues. Neat guy!

Anyway, I finally got around to reading it and I was so pleased to see the first two words of the preface: "Benajmin Franklin". Ah! My heart sang! And he really captures why Benjamin Franklin is one of my favorite people.

Anyway, jsut reading the preface lifted me and helped me realize that I need to stop doing things that I don't love. I don't mean I should not change poopy diapers or anything, but I realized I was doing things that I "thought I should do" that we not making my life any better.

One example is just that I have a mailing list I'm on. I originally joined it so that I could have pleasant conversation with people in the same field I'm in. The problem is that in the 8 years since then, a lot of us have changed jobs a bit. And, mostly, the list has just because a giant raging political argument. I admit that I fanned the flames from time to time, so I'm just as guilty. But as I was reading about Franklin, I realized I had diverged from where I wanted to be and who I wanted to be.

I remember reading about Franklin's ideas for discussing thins that people disagreed on. And he always stresses remaining calm, and non offensive, and always phrasing your points in a very soft way. You say "Well, I think, perhaps, that..." and whatever. You dont just come out and say, "You're wrong. I'm right" or anything of hte sort. And I have been doing that.

I know why I have. I have always lived in a little cocoon where I hide away my true self. I apparently have a huge fear of rejection -- not surprising after being ostracized in school. Always on the edge. But when I had my children, I changed. I think a lot of it was the hormones and the crankiness. I just didn't have hte time or patience to pretend I was a happy nice person who had a timid opinion. Partly it was the project I was on, where I had to fight a lot to keep us on task. And partly, it was all part of my journey to find myself again -- which eventually led to my decision to homeschool.

But I think I went too far. I kept swinging that metaphorical pendulum of my personality too far to being outspoken and confrontational. And after thinking about my buddy Ben, and reading about him through Dyson's eyes, I realized I want want to be that confrontational person.

So I dropped off the list. I need to do productive things that make me happy. Not argue with people I wish would be friends or aqiuaintances, just because I think that's what I'm supposed to want.

And now I need to figure out what to do with the rest of my life. And be a rebel.

Friday, October 24, 2008

I Apparently Don't Read My Own Comments

Sorry to everyone who has commented, and had their lovely comments dissappear into the black hole void that my blog became. I'm hoping you'll understand! It's been a heck of a year of adjustment, from quitting my job, to taking my kids out of daycare, trying to figure out homeschooling, then getting another job part-time flex-time job. My husband is on boss number nine in just over two years of working at his company, and each boss is a rather major adjustment.

I guess I'm trying to say, I wish I had had time to answer your memes and comments -- I truely treasure having bloggers I read come to my little site! And now I'm trying to get right back into it. :)

Go Up, Young Man

I was reading Instapundit this morning, and he was discussing bloggers who were thinking of moving if a different guy than they want wins the election. The update used the phrase "Don't go east, go up!". Glenn takes this to mean Canada... but I believe the other blogger meant space. And that's what I thought of too, before I read the linked blog. We need a new frontier to explore.

I'm the kind of people who likes to be on the cutting, but not bleeding, edge. I don't want to be the first one there, but if a very loose organization exists, I'll go charging in and help them out. I used to do it at work all the time -- I wasn't there to found a new team or new thing, usually, but once something promising got a toe hold, I was there in a heartbeat to help it go. It's just a more fun place for me to be. I wanted to move away from the places where people were getting into boring details and setting up permenant camp. And I think the same is true in real life. There are just people who want to settle down and trade in risk for security, and they don't really care how. And that's not really me. I want to live a bit on the edge, and be free.

Maybe we need a new frontier. Mars, for instance. Let the frontiersmen start a colony up there for people like me who don't want 30,000 new laws, but want to live, dare I say it, a bit more like cowboys. Sure, it sounds a little crazy, but I do think there are people who just thrive in a frontier and they don't really have one right now, and they bristle at the incoming shakles of a civilization they don't particularly want thrust on them.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

I Ran Three Miles!

Okay, okay, not all at once. And I guess I didn't run it all either. But last week I did manage to get on the treadmill three times, running at or over a mile each time. Well, walking, jogging and running, actually. Anyway, I love how I feel after exercise. The only problem is, when do you find time with kids around?

Luckily, last week my husband was taking an online class for work, and they let him take it from home. So he could keep a little eye on the kids during his lunch hour while I ran. It was nice.

How am I going to continue this though? Does anyone have an idea for how to get exercise in while the kids are around? I'm talking little kids -- 4 and 1. I can't have them near the treadmill without one of them trying to hurt themselves on it, and I can't have a relaxing run while the baby is shrieking in baby jail (her playpen. She hates it).

Thursday, February 07, 2008

New Blog for Me

I've decided to start a new blog, while keeping this one around just for my personal stuff. It's called Free Inquiry At Home. Please, feel free to visit!

Friday, January 04, 2008

I'm With Fred

I've been loath to come out and talk about politics. It comes between people. It makes enemies out of friends. People take these things too personally, and get too upset about it, so I've been trying to tiptoe around it. Originally, I made this blog and this pseudonym in order to feel more free to discuss these things, but as I meet people online and this persona takes on a personality of it's own, I now find I don't want to alienate the people who have met me and have been friendly.

But I'm going to endorse a candidate for president. Not that I think anyone will care that much. I really don't think a lot of people read this blog. But if I can change one person's mind, that's wonderful! Or even get someone to take a second look at him.

I no longer can hide. I really should come out and say this under my real name, but I'm so scared of alienating people. But I need to speak my mind. I hate feeling like I'm hiding things, and I know it is my duty to participate in our democracy. It would be different if he were just another candidate. Just another lesser of two evils. But I genuinely like him. He's the candidate I've always wished for:
  • He speaks his mind
  • He is consistent for decades of speeches, votes and actions
  • He's logical
  • He understands the real constitution
  • The way he talks, he sounds as if he knew the founding fathers personally
  • He is a federalist
  • He is for small government
  • He does not play the media's game

And really that last point is why I really need to speak up. He needs more exposure, and through friendly channels -- not the media.

So go check out his website. He has his positions posted, clear and easy to understand. He isn't making promises he'll break, or trying to buy your votes. He feels he was called to do this, and he's willing to do this if we want him. But he won't pander. And I love that!