Sunday, February 16, 2020

On being single

It's been some time since I've pondered writing this post. There was a fear but also a question whether it's even necessary to do that. But my eagerness to open myself and let things out brought me to this day, which only by coincidence succeeds yesterday's dreaded holiday. In fact, I might have mentioned it many years ago (but the number of years might be scary), that I am one of those guys who never had a girlfriend. And this doesn't seem to have changed since then. But my outlook of my situation has changed a lot, meanwhile things have changed dramatically in our culture and the social media too, making things more ugly and awkward for myself, yet compelling me to finally share my position on where I see myself in this mess and what I stand for.

New terms have entered our reality. Incels, MGTOWs, PUAs, etc. My dreaded situation? Technically, I am definitely an incel, although I don't prefer to call me myself that, for reasons I will explain soon. The shocker? Just hit 40 years old and I never had a girlfriend. I don't know what a relationship is, how does it feel, what people do every day being together, if it ever gets boring, how it feels when it goes bad, how people break up. My feelings about my situation? To tell you the truth, I don't feel any loneliness, I don't feel like I desperately missing something, even if I have always fantasised at times, that it would be just nice to try something like this. You know what my biggest source of sadness concerning the issue is? Carrying the social stigma. Mostly that!

A fear I have (and thankfully it has never happened) is what if someone asks me in public (in front of people, not privately) whether I have a girlfriend. Maybe one can ask it as a silly joke, stereotypically mocking my special interests (happens in movies with nerds too) and I can laugh back or avoid. Thankfully the question is weird because it asks you "if you have right now a girlfriend" and I can answer, "No, at least currently I am a single". I don't think anyone would have asked in front of people "Actually, did you ever had a girlfriend? How old are you btw?" (privately it may have happened). The stigma here is that at this age, I never had a girlfriend. It would be ok if it was 20-25 in my opinion (I am puzzled by really young men at 18 who are depressed for the same reason), near 30 it points out to something going wrong, much later you are fucked. But that was the perception, that was the internalisation of negative feelings inside my, that somehow I must be some kind of freak for being this weird case of a virgin after 30. And now at 40? I decided to stop giving a fuck!

How did I personally ended up like this? It's a mix of personality traits that led me to this. I've been known since my childhood to be more shy, reserved, introverted and I've also developed social anxiety. I can't be certain whether this was simple to bad experiences or my biological make up, but I've been always an overthinker and recently I've been convinced I score much higher in neuroticism than my average male peers. I am pretty sure that this also has played a big role in the fact that I was bullied through my entire school years. When you stand out on such a trait, you can easily become a target for bullies. I couldn't understand it back then (so that maybe there was a hope to somehow change/hide it or alter my mind, although it's so deeply biological that it would be extremely hard) so I just had to deal with that sadness too among others. This didn't helped my overall self-esteem.

I've also been more thing oriented than people oriented, focused too much on special interests and ideas. I had trouble fitting in with regular people, social events where smalltalk is too common. You sometimes will find me sitting with other people and not uttering any word, other times I'll suddenly talk about a specific subject obsessively. As the social reality makes less sense, while my special interests and the world of ideas are perceived as more fascinating, it made logical sense that I'd end up spending less time socialising and more focusing in my own world. Or maybe, even when my social interactions were not that of an otaku (in fact, I've still exposed myself to more than enough interactions, have two brothers, enough friends, university, jobs, parties. I didn't exactly lock myself in a room for a month or something), I didn't evolve to the next step. Try to ask a girl out, dating, see how the moment of intimacy is possible (my dreaded eternal confusion, how to get from simply knowing her to be allowed to touch her, communicating somehow that you are with each other, it was always so awkward to me). Maybe I have one or two moments where I ask someone out, we sat in a cafeteria, chatted, but I didn't follow up another day. It can be so emotionally freezing to even think about it, and of course it's not enough as you have to do more or retry with another person, so that I mostly avoided it. I even had girls showing subtle interest but me not responding (frozen in silence).

It can't be a single answer. But rather factors like these above. No mystery here though. More focus in my own personal world (special interests) with a mix of social anxiety/neuroticism that made me avoidant towards the other side, although the personality/psychological factors must have played much more role than special interests (the stereotype says that nerds can't get laid, but I tell you I've met insane nerdy low level programmers with good looking girlfriends, in fact I might be an exception even inside some programming communities where people typically have or had relationships in their lives). I am convinced now (and something I've heard in a podcast (it could be a Stardusk-Wojak discussion on incels)) that a prime factor for the condition of an incel is scoring high in neuroticism. Of course, others have mentioned looks or autism, which I don't deny they play a bigger role in some, but nobody focused on that one major trait that I think we overlook. And if you notice the way incels discuss things, the overthinking, the exaggeration, the emotionality, the anger, that smells neuroticism. I know because I have it and before I learned to improve at controlling my emotions, I'd write excessive texts online (like my old posts at that would mirror that. I guess, one has to learn to change mental habits and maybe things can improve somehow, or at least you stop being so depressed and desperate about your condition.

As for the term incel, I have many reasons that I want to avoid it. First one is that of fear. Seeing the negative connotations of the word and the fact that there have been one or two shooters associated with them, I'd rather not. Incel as a condition surely matches my reality (I've even heard of people who might had 2-3 short relationships between long years of loneliness consider themselves incels, so why wouldn't me who is 40 and never had a single one fit the definition?). But since the beginning I realised I was in this state till the time I stopped giving a fuck, the word and the existence of such a community didn't even exist in my reality. Hell,. there might be even people who I know or suspect being single forever, not even being aware that there is a new word for them, cultural wars and insults around that term, even a lot more ugliness and confusion. What if someone revealed that this unsuspecting person never ever had a girlfriend and they get to be called an incel in a mocking way, not knowing what the hell does that even mean and why they are treated so badly? The word is way after in my life, and while it brings the subject back, I am way too old to be associated with it now.

Second reason is that I kinda feel like a tourist. I am feeling a bit guilty that I didn't do as much effort as some of the incels who according to their claims tried to get into dates a lot and it failed many times. My situation was different. While, I have been in the struggle of freezing just by even thinking going to a date and showing intimacy, feeling depressed or like a loser, and all the associated issues with the condition, I know I've not put the effort as many incels claim to did. Some talk even about altering their bodies, as they have this extreme obsession of not having the right characteristics that they go through ends to improve their looks. Meanwhile, whenever I looked at some of their forums, what I've seen was the extreme neuroticism I talk about, with big doses of desperation, and really spending all of your life thinking only about that one thing. I am not trying to criticise here, rather to say that I am totally unlike the typical incel in the community, even if technically I hit the criteria like a bullseye. At this age and after I've mostly resolved some of my complexes on the issue, I am not interested to go there. Maybe, if I was 20 years old discovering the incel forums (or a similar forum if it exist) I would have been sucked into the same black hole myself. Thank god I had been sucked by a creative community around my special interests at the time. Someone would again throw the geek stereotype, that this is the reason why I stayed virgin at 40, but I think this saved me and could possibly help some incels if they can be attracted by a creative activity within a community of other people, giving them some alternative source of purpose. It doesn't have to be that the meaning of all your existence is only attached to the need of a woman.

So, what am I? A volcel? I don't think I entirely fit that either. As I have my doors open. I don't exclude that something will change in me, I'll take another turn where I go back and focus on socialization and dating (although I realize it might be a bit late at 40 and my interest is less and less as time goes). Volcel would mean someone who took the decision to me, like a chastity vow. It could possibly mean that even if a woman did all the work and throwed herself at you, you would reject her. My situation is different. I just stopped worrying. But I didn't consciously said I am out of the game. I am more like, you know what? I am gonna enjoy my life and care less about it, but who knows in the future? I do question myself whether I want a woman in my life or I've learned that I must want because else I am a loser. There was a Stardusk video which inspired me to think what do I really want in life? Why is it considered a fact that you MUST be with a woman? How does our culture define what it means to be a man? Why can't there be a society where a percentage of men are not that interested in relationships and that being considered ok and not something to be ashamed? (I sometimes think of one of my heros, Nicola Tesla, who dedicated his life to something else. Was he a loser for never being with a woman? Rhetorical question).

That sounds more like a part of the MGTOW philosophy, but do I consider myself one? Not really. I am reluctant to take any identity. I might be more sympathetic with specific ones. I think that if I had to chose between incel and MGTOW, I would definitely go MGTOW and that's not just for the identity, but the philosophy. I am not following the site or the forums, I am more of a lonewolf passing around and having similar understanding of few relevant ideas. I am less interested on the male-female relationship discussions here and more on the idea of redefining going your own way. It's ironic most of the MGTOW writings revolves too much around the subjects, there is red-pill rage as they call it sometimes, but if they really decided to move away from women I'd expect them to become something like an army of Nicola Tesla's jump starting their own society (yes, that's how I initially imagined it and I am pretty psyched about the idea of men developing science and philosophy, secluded and doing miracles, pretty Venus Project I'd say :). Usually, MGTOW discussion revolve around the same red pill rage issues. The only MGTOW (and he might not wearing the title) I like listening to, is Stardusk. He also has stereotypical subjects that are common with MGTOW discussions, but his style is more of a thoughtful discussion without much anger, while touching on some subjects of what it means to be a man in the present day, how to redefine meaning for yourself without blindly listening to people who want to sell you the ultimate solution, not even listening himself as he says. It's more close to my feeling of wishing to set aside (not totally abort) this whole madness of feeling desperate for a woman (or also society's approval) and redefine your meaning by self examination and improvement. It's the path of a lone wolf. It's something personal and I wouldn't like to fall to the trap and describe it with any of these awkward identities.

I've been writing for a long and while the subject is endless and I still have things to say (I was wishing to talk more about the social stigma or how incel is also used as an insult now and how the media portraits it) but I think I'll have to stop here and continue in a future post. Maybe I could write a bit about other groups like PUAs (the one I am uninterested in and they sound like some obnoxious people I've met, totally self-centered around women, bragging while trying to preach you how to get pussy, sorry no) or MRAs (Totally conflated with all the other groups to make them look bad, but I think some of their people are really trying to understand men's issues (where incels/mgtow simply relate to few of the subjects, but don't define MRAs) and the ones I frequently watch, especially HBR, are doing really good research and discussion on a lot of things happening in and around these issues. Sometimes they discuss about incels in sympathetic ways or have one on their show. I'd like to finally thank The Incel Project for discussing the subject with actual incels, in a way that is not trying to be polemic like most of the mainstream media do.

Friday, February 14, 2020

Mirrors of a ghost

I somehow came back to this long abandoned blog, reading one of my old post, just to get a gist of my state of mind back then, how did I perceive certain ideas. I came back to this as it was one of the main posts I got interested in the philosophy of meditation. I didn't really get into it back then, had or maybe thought I had (and maybe I did) some blissful realisations just by reading some texts, however I didn't practice even I'd like to back then. I didn't know if I can do it alone, didn't dare to go to some group either, for various reasons. In the post, I thought my life had changed for real this time, just by reading some texts, not even by practising (and from what I've read it would normally take a long period of practising to finally get something from it). Looking at my later years, it might not be the case, although maybe I opened a window to the possibility that there can be bliss, there must be a way.

I finally went back to it using another source, doing it alone, not expecting anything, just doing it as a habit. No need to go to some group, no need to be confused whether I am doing it right or which school of meditation, I think this app finally helped me to start letting myself do it for 10 minutes every day. I am still in half the introductory lessons before I go to the long sessions (I wonder what will that make to my brain), while listening to few of the theory chapters and reading Sam Harris book. Reading also in the philosophy of it helps getting a better perspective of life, but I was missing the practice. I just realised at my 40 that I still depress myself a lot, need to change mind perspective, and since everything else didn't seem to help, maybe I should give this a second chance, for real this time. It's promising.

I want to go back to my old post (10 years, seems longer than I thought) to see what I had understood back then and how it relates with my current reality. Sometimes, when you read things you wrote many many years ago (and that's the most interesting part of keeping a blog), many things look alien. Did I say fucking that? What the fuck am I writing here? Sometimes laughing, sometimes frowning, sometimes puzzled. Please, don't try to understand, this is just a reminder to myself for the possible future. Ok self, what was the thing you wanted to remind me of? I've forgotten now. I thought you were me and so we both knew.

My current self reading post of his past self and not getting it. No, no, I do get some of these things. Some things are still familiar, it's just a bit alien or funny the way I experience them reading. My core identity was the internalisation of all these struggles with what I called the normality, the normal people (before everyone started using 'normies'), how being different (or treated as different), came to write my life story. The internalisation of all these experiences and ideas got me obsessed every day for the last 20+ years, feeding the cycle, felt it was me. As I frequently read on the meditation philosophy, the ego is just an illusion, or as I put it in that old post, the collection of all these thoughts and experiences through the time, such that if you have change some of the variables you would end up with an entirely different person, thinking it's still the precious me.

So, reading posts of my past self is like reading stories that mirrors my ego at that particular time. Stories that mirror a ghost. Who was I? Who am I? Or as I recently wrote in my twitter,.

There is a book, written about you, before you were even born. Who are you?

That goes a bit deeper of course. It's not that you are just the continuation of your thoughts, life experiences, upbringing, etc. But since a lot of your thoughts are really the thoughts of the culture, which precedes previous cultures, civilizations and ideas,. it's all like a long chain since the beginning. So, not only who are you (your delusional sense of ego) is how things came to be, how the variables of your biology and your environment fused together to create the impression of you, how different that could be if changed few variables here and there. But a lot of the things that influenced you were informed by previous and previous generations as ideas in our culture come from a long time ago, before you were even born. In a strange sense of viewing things, someone decided who you will be long long long ago and they also didn't even know it. Someone designed them too. Some of the things I wrote and I'll write might design people in the future. What does it even mean? Do I went to go somewhere with this? Not necessary but it's a thought that popped in my mind and a beautiful phrase.

The ghosts of myself in the past were more chaotic. I've been writing a lot lot of texts and some of their parts make my chuckle. It feels like mental masturbation reading it from a present context. Apparently my life is better now as I just stopped having the impulse to write as frequently here (look at the past six or more years, oh and I missed writting anything in 2019, first year I skipped). I can still get some pleasure from writing in a passionate deep emotional style, I sometimes miss it. Things change, old habits go, new habits come. Sometimes though I still feel like I encounter the same hardship as my old self, in emotional stress, anxiety, not much have changed. Understanding no long time ago I simply was more highly sensitive (or too high compared to the average male person in the trait of neuroticism in Big Five) and that manifested in many different things.

Two years before approaching 40 years old, I put a mental note that when I reach that I should stop giving a fuck. Didn't know what I meant back then, never planned anything specific (except of vaguely reading in meditation, stoicism and other stuff) but starting with the meditation app seems promising and better than I expected from me (I would expect to say I'll stop giving a fuck or radically change something on me, but for yet another time do nothing). Stop giving a fuck is also like letting go but has to contradict into also doing something. "It's like the people who tell you to be yourself, then chastise you for not being normal. Oof!"

Life is full of contradictions and somehow you have to factor it all in your consciousness, the good and the bad. Also, the last sentence in italics is part of a ghost of my past. Still present some times. I'll live in acceptance with that. Oof for now!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Unsustainable emotions

I'll try to make this short cause I am drunk. Yeah, I do this sometimes, rarely thankfully.
Just some thoughts, nothing special, not having to do with being drunk.

It's interesting to thing of one's self, what brought you here, what is your "agenda", why you do what you do, why you believe what you do. I think this about myself and sometimes I don't even know, I don't even know why I didn't go to the other direction. I sometimes think it about people too. Even strange people I agree with their opinions, but what was the think that made them go independent and didn't follow some of the mainstream? What made them escape the mainstream thought, what changed their mind, or where they predisposed to reach some conclusions?

It's sometimes awkward and I don't talk as much, why as I explained previously, I entered this rabbit hole, where I am hooked into the whole "red-pilling" philosophies, taking the side of the anti-sjw personas, devouring from Jordan Peterson's speeches and the "intellectual dark web" to 3rd party youtubers. It's awkward because politically some people would think you are on the wrong side of the history or something. And I was never political. I was incredibly apolitical compared to my peers, I was avoiding taking stances in such discussions. It was awkward, you could be characterized, and I didn't have enough information or knowledge on the subjects to be sure what I am talking about.

But the last two years, from observing the gamergate controversy, to realizing some of the nice sounding ideologies are not as good as you think, or at least, expressed very badly, in an authoritarian manner, I started listening more to people opposing the new trends of identity politics on the left. I was dragged more to this side. But why?

My fundamental question is why didn't I became an SJW? I realized long ago, that I have some of the personality traits that might be frequent with this kind of people. Mainly my high neuroticism and then maybe openness to ideas, agreeableness, low conscientiousness (a thing I am trying to work to improve). And a lot of the things I discuss in this blog in the past. My feeling that I am somehow marginalized by normality, being in a minority of people not fitting the mainstream ways of socializing, entertainment, etc. It was all expressed. And another element, I read now the theory (conspiracy? reality? who knows) of the postmodern philosophies and how the far left doesn't want to have the discussion (protesters just shouting and disrupting talks) and I remembered one thing. I once have a frustrating discussion in the past where I declared that "Conversation is just a way to dominate other people's reality". It's hard to explain this, but I felt like the other person doesn't care about the truth or maybe your reality or feelings, but argumentation is a means to make them right and demolish you and close the case in their advantage.

But wait. I now learn that short of this idea is a postmodernist claim that somehow the leftist sjw types like (that's the conspiracy theory). And I don't really know anything about postmodernist philosophy, so I will discuss it in simpler manners: Discussion is threatening.

I fully understand the sentiment. This is a way to understand some of the sjw people. When you are in a hard situation, where words feel threatening (but it's the emotions that words emanate) and maybe you are a weirdo in one or another way (from being an introvert, lonely, incel or autistic guy, or feeling guilty about being lazy having to justify yourself constantly, to being other things I am not familiar with, like LGBT for example) and you had to constantly justify yourself for not being normal, you just for a moment want to not hear any argumentation about who you are and what you are supposed to be or how you should live your life. It can be all triggering and it feels like you are in a fight to justify that you are valid as a human being. I understand the sentiment.

But what is invalid to me (and why I have disliked the trends of social justice) is the whole politicisation, the mob mentality of these people coming together and showing their worse self. This is what never catched with me, I would come despising those attitudes, which I think are unsustainable. They are unsustainable because what is the thing you are showing to the world? That all these minorities are creating more trouble to society than they solve, it's all a culture of outrage, nobody is gonna take them seriously! They just don't want to have the discussion, they don't really care about the truth, the just want the world to cater in their ways. I could just never get along with the mob mentality of protests anyway, so while I could feel the "struggle of normality" as I used to call it, I ended up making my peace with the world as it is and go my own way. Maybe I feel more like an individual, a lone wolf, than belonging to a pack of animals.

I thought about this in the following way. You have the feminists and SJWs with their political correct language, demanding that entertainment is not as "sexist" (however they perceive it and can't even agree between their group members about what is and what is not sexist), that we change culture as much as possible, by force. Now! Everything is sexist, everything is racist and we have to call it out. They want to push things fast! Yeah, sure.. and I'll tell you what: I don't like the majority of socialization. I don't like full bars with lot's of people, loud music, smoke, casual talk. I don't like that most people are more people oriented than thing oriented. I don't like the stereotypes about nerds. Or the virgin incel shaming. I don't like them at all. But you know what? I never demanded that the majority of society which is based on the more "people oriented" neurotypical way of thinking would radically change on my needs, and now! And that is unacceptable we have this culture. I never demanded that!!! So, why do these SJWs and feminists demand things cater in their way? And even go out of their way and also shame some other marginalized people out there, calling out geeks with derogatory as being virgin neckbeard losers, while they speak about acceptance and understanding and politeness? That hypocrisy rubbed me in the wrong way, another reason to oppose these groups btw.

I learned that the best strategy is to cope with yourself, understand that you are different and that can be problematic in a society of normies, understand yourself and how it clashes with societal norms and how you can cope without being radicalized, without only blaming yourself but neither wanting to dismantle society. Everything else is unsustainable. You will only look like a fool, you will demand society to fully change (which is more unlikely than anything else) without taking some compromises. And I understand that life is a struggle, and people feel marginalized, and "Strap on your boots" is not always the more compassionate answer. But forming mobs of people to just shout things without having a real conversation or trying to fire people from their jobs because they posted something on social media, that's despicable and it doesn't make you look good and it won't look good for your cause, whatever that is.

This is what I mean by unsustainable emotions. In darker circumstances, based on my burden and what I have written here, I don't exclude the possibility that I could have become radicalised, either by joining some of these groups, or forming some kind of anti-normality manifesto and would have started something on my own, radicalising other people with my ideas.

There has to be another way. Discover more about yourself, but don't necessary put it in a scheme of me versus society or us versus them. You are not totally wrong, don't blame yourself, but don't blame society and culture either. These aspects change slowly and are defined by the majority. It's harsh here in loneliness, but what can you do? Don't make fool of yourself.

I am not making too much sense, but maybe it's a weird equilibrium state, where I neither want to go to the path of hating myself, nor on the outrage path of blaming society. It is unsustainable. I hope some of the SJW types (and I am sorry for using the term, but that's to point out which people I mean by using one acronym) will see things differently and act in better ways. Learn to not being afraid of the discussion, because I believe there is something that they could have to say (and it would take a long time to be adopted), I just feel their tactics are so wrong.

I keep going with this and don't have a good epilogue (still almost drunk), turned out to be a big post, so I'll stop right here. I want to discuss (reluctantly) about these issues, and part of it even reflecting to my own past, where somehow I didn't follow their path, which is bizarre (why would I side with those "we don't care about your feelings" guys on the other side, one would wonder?).

Saturday, June 09, 2018

Doesn't seem to work.

I might not update this blog on a regular basis. Doesn't seem to work like this, I always come not feeling like it or having anything to say, when I plan it. It is working for Computer Hermit since I'd usually post some news from my coding progress. But here? The subjects here need more thought and used to be a thing of the moment, when I suddenly was emotional about some thing in my mind and wanted to write something. I could make a list of some things I want to write about and discuss them whenever I feel like (which means never? :). Not sure, but I might remove the Saturday task from habitica.

It shows again how things change in my life. I don't feel as much the need to write in the way I used to in this blog (although I might want to express my mind about ideas but usually I am not in front of the PC when this happens, and till I go back to write about it, I am occupied by other thoughts). There goes the days where I was expressing myself in such depressive manner.

Then again the reason I never come to write something fully here is that I am occupied by other plans and end up at night, very tired, having to write something, anything. I was completing my second session on coding till I realised it's more late than I thought. It's easier again with Computer Hermit because I allow myself to write my progress instead of discussing anything. But here, what to write? It has to be some expansion on ideas, while my mind is off at that point and only doing it as a habit.

So, you might not see much here, esp not plan Saturdays. I'll either think of another way (maybe make a list of things you'd like to talk about in the future) or update this one less frequently. It will be fine, afterall it has already been dead over the last few years.

p.s. And I wanted to talk about my dislike of identity politics or how some things I see now reflect things of myself or older thoughts I had. I don't feel like and I am not sure I'd always want to get deeper into these issues.
p.p.s. This blog is in limbo.

Saturday, June 02, 2018

Random stuff continues..

I am here, almost an hour before midnight, trying to figure out what to write. It happens because this is in my list of things to do and I leave it for last so far. It's easier with Computer Hermit blog because it can be more casual writing of what creative projects I worked with, in the past week (although I should be writing on specific subjects sometimes). And here, I think like I have to write something more specific. But maybe it's all right that I start with something random and then this forms into something else. One problem of procrastination and motivation is catching up the flow, doing things right at the moment you feel like doing them, although as they say if you wait for feels to act then you will miss a lot of things.

Anyway, I was even stressed today, had my driving test (never before, doing it late at 38) and failed miserably. Then I was trying to code something in DOS and messing up with freezes, spending much more time, but I was also pissed with previous things. So, maybe I was too heavy to write something specific and time is few. I was thinking about getting deeper into some of my thoughts on the cultural wars, or opening a subject called "Identities". Maybe I can write fragments of what I think and how I got here. Maybe not.

It's a good question actually, we rarely are full aware why we do what we do, why we have the beliefs we have, what drove people into being obsessed with specific issues, what triggers us, etc. For example, concerning the whole politics/cultural war, if I examine myself I realise, I was always very apolitical compared to most of my friends. Everyone had a strong opinion, and 99% of the times it was left-leaning, the same narrative (that actually sounded ok and believable to my uninterested mind then) that capitalism is bad and "the rich get richer" etc, etc. And then you add all the "progressive" things about how open we are with everything and so on and so forth. And it sounded nice and I was "ok, that makes sense I guess?". Didn't have anything to counter (not sure if I have or I am ready now or interested). Anyway, your young friends would stereotypically lean to the right because that's the "cool" thing and when you thing conservatives you'd think of old authoritarian people. So, I understand why this was highly popular to every young person out there and why this was the only thing I'd hear from my friends.

And don't get me wrong, I am still left-leaning in a sense (at least in the social domain, as in the economic I don't know what's really going on), but without even identifying as one. It just happens that I am a live and let live person, so I am all open to the whole being tolerant to other sexualities and blah blah for example. But there was this fact, that I was never opinionated, I was never too strong or passionate about it. I wasn't interesting in politics, protests, activism, etc and was rather lost in my own special interests. I'd argue that maybe I had found my own identity in hobbies, nerdiness, computers, programming, demoscene and whatever, and didn't had the need for another identity in the sociopolitical domain.

But then something changed! Since at least two years ago, I started reading too much into what's going on with the cultural wars, identity politics, political correctness and the opposition to it. I have been watching podcasts, can recognise a lot of intellectuals that have something to do with it, the memes around it, etc. I still try to understand what drove me into it. There were some triggers for sure. As a gamer and a nerd, I had stumbled upon the Gamergate controversy as I mentioned previously, leaning more to the side of the nerds rather than the people who liked to shame the nerds.

Still, why would I get involved deeper? (although I am mainly involved by informing myself rather than participating in the madness) Gamergate is a thing that has mostly passed, not many people spend time and energy in a battle that's over. Maybe it's because through the whole thing I learned about a new world, new people, on a bizarre, almost hidden fight, I couldn't believe. Things I would naively believe or not bother so much would fall like a tower of cards. What the hell is going on?

I can't answer this yet (and I'd need to close this post now). There are things that triggers you or highly motivates you to learn more about. The absurdity of things, or how hidden some of them were and nobody talked about, makes it more appealing. Then you find other people who are also onto it, you wonder which of your friends are "red-pilled", but don't dare to ask them. I will also like to add Identity. As SJW are identitarians, the same happens on the other side. But maybe it's a conscious Identity where you think you found your new internet friends. I know, bizarre. Maybe that keeps me, being informed in the unknown truth and finding few fellows who are "woke" and the dopamine of it.

My favorite of the podcasts btw, is Honey Badger Radio. Many late nights, I fire up some of the discussions between these bunch of nerds I imagine being my friends or having something very common together, and enjoy the night. Maybe it's that, you found people with similar beliefs that are a bit further from the mainstream and that makes you feel connected. Maybe some things that you always had in mind suddenly make a new kind of sense and that makes those issues suddenly very very interesting. Maybe you are finding yourself.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Still random things

Habitica has been an interesting experiment so far. It's part of a bigger process trying to put my life in order and improve some things. Well, I had been attempting at numerous times in the past, setting myself in order, usually in a sudden gush just before burn out. It has become a self fulfilling prophecy to expect that it's another temporary false alarm, illusory hope, wishful thinking. Well, I've said that there are some things in my life that are better, so maybe things change in small steps so that you don't realise the differential. But all that remains is the dreadful feeling of how much of everything is a struggle sometimes.

I feel this as I set enough tasks every day to keep me active, fighting against my procrastination or my fight against the temptation to open social media or play video games or any other things that feels better at that particular time than what I am disciplining myself to do. It's kinda interesting with a list of planned things (I usually never like schedules) because at some days I feel like a robot and even forgot some other fun activities (like vidya :) I used to do. It kinda works. It even makes the smaller easier activities more easy to complete as they now seem much easier than coding sessions on my creative projects for example. It's easier to wash the dishes or do basic hygiene (that I neglected) han having to focus on writing/designing/debugging code when your mind isn't there at the particular time.

That's an interesting point too. One I didn't pay much attention before. It really is so variable how much I struggle and how my work productivity flows when I decide that at a particular hour I'll work with a specific coding project. Depending on the goals, how interesting the algorithm is, how trivial or hard it is, if it's debugging, solving problems or just designing classes, every one of these tasks need different mental focus. And usually my mind might be wandering elsewhere, while trying to push myself towards concentrating so that I may write few good lines of code. And I notice that thing too now, my hand on the mouse almost unconsciously goes at twitter or youtube or Steam. I notice the urge more. I am distracted or my brain wants me to be distracted (I currently started reading this book btw from my interest on how dopamine/serotonine and the modern world can explain these effects. From an author I previously knew from his book on sugar and diabetes). I also realize that if your work was automatic (like a factory worker) or if you do everyday chores (house or hygiene) then these should be much easier, because you can wash your teeth or the house while your mind can in parallel wander wherever it feels like. While programming (and other creative endeavours) need focus, something I still have to work with.

So, as I was still working on my 3rd youtube video (goes well, might finish tomorrow) I realized I got very very tired (the more tasks you complete or alternatively the more closer to the night you come) and there were still few things in my schedule, as writing a post in this blog. I was planning in my post to open to the new subject related to the cultural wars and my thoughts about the whole situation and where I am standing on, but as I was very late and tired and this needs a different state of mind to expand (and the right focus, this was not on my mind at the end of the day) I decided to postpone it.

However, I should write very little things about it just to reveal where I am and be done with it. It could make some people like me and other dislike me, I don't care. So,. one of my youtube addictions (after opinion videos about videogames or strange mysteries and other crap) is watching long podcasts, discussions and opinions from our side of the echochamber. I ironically call it "our own side of the echochamber" just to remind me, pay attention that I don't get too serious about it. It was since reading about Gamergate that I started getting into other domains I would never expect to get into (there is your "slippery slope" :), from the whole anti-feminist/anti-SJW craze to finding about Jordan Peterson and the other fellows of the "Intellectual Dark Web" (a term that I feel so so about). At times I'd watch Joe Rogan, Steven Crowder, and at other moments I go to more intellectual types like Gad Saad, and again Jordan Peterson of course. Other times some third party youtubers I really enjoy, and my worst being hooked from clickbaits like "This guy Pwned/Destroyed/Debunked that guy" or "Feminist Fails compilation".

It's been 2 years since I had this ride, and I do question myself how did I got here, because you know something? I was always very apolitical, much more agreeable or ignorant about politics compared to my friends. Also I was hearing always one side of the political spectrum wherever I went and it all sounded nice and correct, however I didn't pay more attention and never understood people who go into protests and their minds being taken by the forces of the group. So, the things I found about picked my interest about some realities I didn't even know exist (and still, in my daily life, I haven't encountered some of the madness of the cultural wars, so all the impressions I have are from the internet). Maybe it's my sense of individuality, or my stubbornness when I found out that there are some people who just don't want you to discuss specific issues. I read about political correctness, the radicals on the campuses, and the chance this creeping or already so in the institutions of society (which one could argue is just conspiracy theories but time will tell). Something seems so bizarre when you discover about it (they call it red-pilling but whatever :P) and see the manifestations from weird news around ("Fake news" from our own side of the echochamber? Or reality?). There are so much things I'd like to write about, some of them even partially related to previous things in my life.

Oh,. there is also another reason that influenced me to which side in the cultural wars I am closer to. During the Gamergate era, it kinda bothered me that there was an attempt to demonize the gamers, and I understand that some people inside the gaming community can act a little defensive or fanatic, but it seemed targeted from the game journalist media, calling people "virgin neckbeard losers" or writing articles like "Gamers are dead" and the whole fuzz started from people I don't think they care much about the community. I have seen it much later manifest in many geek communities, from comics, magic the gathering, e-sports, D&D, metal, etc. Just about everywhere, some feminist or social justice person who doesn't original seem like knowing much about it, tries to invade those communities and blame everything that they deem "problematic". Can't count how many times there was a new kind of #gate. I just don't like those kinds and their identity politics, and whether they wanted it or not, they succeeded in "red-pilling" me. Congratulations!

p.s. I end up a bit angry here. I should spend more time and focus properly expanding in some of the issues. It's a new world for me, and at the same time I realise how it affects me and should take it easy. If you get into, you can't escape. And maybe even if you tried to ignore it, it would still affect your daily life in few years from now. This new reality is here to stay.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Second era.

It seems, if I don't fall away from it, like this blog will be set to motion again. One reason is that I have hooked Habitica to things I like to do again. Besides daily chores, programming projects and such, I thought why not set a weekly goal to post one post per each blog and see what happens? I have set Saturday for this one. Sometimes the post will be small with some news and smaller thoughts, sometimes bigger with actual issues I want to talk about, but I'll always try to post once per week.

This is gonna be a new era for this blog, not only because it used to be something from the past that I have forgotten or don't have much reason, motivation or time to write, but also as I am gonna move into subjects I haven't talked before. It's interesting to think how different era's of my life totally change the things I like to think and write about, as I am not as interested to add to the confusing discussion of my mental issues that used to be a commonality as my life has changed a bit to the better since years ago that depressive nights in an internet cafe writing about stuff is not my thing anymore. I am currently living in another country (UK) with a more independent life and a job, still having a big road ahead concerning few remaining issues in my life, but generally I am less obsessed with some of the old issues and more looking forward. As the environment has changed, so did my posts and basically it was marked by my absence from regular blog posts.

It's mostly my idea to set up the weekly habit for a post, however there are some new things I will want to discuss in the future. One of these issues doesn't even have to do with myself (yep, this blog was quite "egocentric" to say, but what do you expect from a blog with this title? :) although there are some interesting parallels with my obsessions about normality and different ways to think of one's misery in life. I was a bit reluctant at first to write here about these issues as they can be a thing of divisions (and I am really curious where some of my unknown followers are with this and how they may take it). To cut it short, since the past two years at least, I got pretty hooked with the modern cultural wars and the nasty politics behind it, reading articles about it, watching youtube videos, listening to discussion panels, podcasts, and so on and so forth. And since it's one of the primary things that occupy my mind, and I prefer to write about things that matter to me, I am gonna make the start and discuss it openly in some of the future incoming posts. I will try to approach it in a nuanced way and even connect it with some aspects of my life or personal thoughts about mental and social issues. I hope it goes well as I am not sure if I can articulate properly and succinctly such sensitive or complex issues.

Besides this subject, posts of mine will still touch some other interests of mine, a big one still having to do with procrastination vs productivity. I realise now that I am a person of low conscientiousness, while I always wanted to drive my creative skills into something more fruitful and productive. I accept that it's not my natural and that's ok, but it's always worth to try. Meanwhile, I discover some interesting things in my behaviour as I try to tackle this issue, which I'd like to discuss from time to time. Posts on other third issues will come too, and who knows, sometimes I might have a new idea concerning my older mental issues that I will want to revisit.

That is for now. I am pretty waiting to get into this new subject from next Saturday and see how it goes. Hopefully I will have enough time and peace of mind to articulate the core of these issues, else it could be a more simple post about me procrastinating again :P
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