Tuesday, February 28, 2006

The cost of being slow

In case you are wondering yes I actually do stuff like this. This weekend I was making several trips to Home Depot getting supplies to fix some stuff around the house. My path there leads me down Portland Ave. I take this same path to work everyday. For those of you not familiar with it is a 4 lane divided residential street. (at least the part that I take) I had to pee. Having to pee fairly urgently I began to notice every little pothole in the street. This is when I began to notice that there were more potholes in the slow lane than in the fast lane. Musing on this as I peed in the holiday gas station bathroom, I started to formulate a hypothesis.

Driving in the slow lane cost more because there are more potholes.
Why...manhole covers and sewers are placed in the street because it is the lowest point for water to run. I had a level with me and took several sections of measurements and sure enough, the rise and the run showed me that the middle of the street was a few degrees higher than that of the lane closest to the curb allowing water to run off to the storm drains. Since there is more creases or seams on the lane that shares its boundary with the curb there is more cracks for water to get in to freeze and thaw and create potholes. Moreover, since more water is funneled to the sides of the street there is increased chance of that process happening. Hence the bumper ride that is harder on my shocks that cost me more money on upkeep on my car i.e. new tires, tie rods, rotations etc.

At least this is what I am thinking. Granted a few measurements on Portland is hardly sufficient to make such a claim as driving in the slow lane causes more damage to your car but it definitely got me thinking....

Sunday, February 26, 2006


The shortest disance between two places
I walk a thin one
Drawn in the sand
Drop one
Wait in one
To the back of one
Wait in one
Stay behind one
Pick one
Lead one
Snort one
Fat one
Skinny one
Colored one
Crocked one
What isn't a line

Friday, February 24, 2006

Refresh Button at the Fountain of Knowledge

*Warning this is rant*

Our understanding of the world is based on a pyramid of assumptions that looks something like the below. Each discipline answers a question that the other is missing. Each discipline is built using the assumptions from the one below, hence if the assumptions in the discipline below change you must change the assumptions in the discipline(s) above. Much of the disconnect in our current education system results from too much specialty in one area without a sufficient understanding in the others and how they relate.

Understanding of the world needs to take place in the overall context...not in a single discipline vacuum

Anthropology** <- behaviors of entire cultures
Sociology****** <-Behavior of collections organisms
Psychology******** <- Behavior of organisms
Biology************* <- Organisms
Chemistry************* <- Elements Compounds Matter
Physics****************** <- Movement
Math********************** <-Base all application implicit and explicit

What pisses me off is when people black box these disciplines as if they can stand-alone and are not interdependent. This comes into play especially when dealing with the so-called soft disciplines at the top of the pyramid.

For example, Genetics (a concentration within biology) we have made discoveries based on empirical evidence that challenge and change the way we thought the world works.
1.) Evolution happens
2.) Homosexuality is by-and-large is not caused due to environment or choice
3.) We may be more predisposed to gender roles because of evolution then we thought (Nature vs. Nurture)
4.) Complex Systems arise without designers
5.) Do not get me started on religion, which asks us to suspend the entire model, but only in that instance in our life.

All of this new information forces change in how we look at and understand peoples behaviors, behavoirs of groups and entire cultures.

What makes me lose it is the people\professors that entrench themselves into there discipline and then defend it as it as the primary goal of there lives. The primary goal of all of us student and professor alike should be to seek the truth, even if that truth is different then our current understanding.

Hence, we need to hit the refresh data button and update our understanding holistically in context of the entire pyramid. Every event, action and issue takes place within the framework and effects what is above it.

We need to hit the button…..has anyone seen it?

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Nice to meet you

Can I really be freinds with someone
I don't really know?
Sometimes I thought knew
I would see
Glimpes of light
Like holes punched in a box
So a caged animal can breath
Inbetween the lines
The nervous laughter
The dirty jokes
The drinking
The hard exteriors
I accumulated pieces of you
Over the years
A friend puzzle
All edge pieces
I guess about the center
One day I hope you can tell me
I hope I can be the friend you need
I am not going to be the one
To tell you what you want to hear
That cheats us both
You could say this about me too
I will show you mine
If you show me yours

My name is Brian...And it is nice to meet you.

Sunday, February 19, 2006


Just finished Randall N Robinson's The Debt:What America Owes Blacks on reparations on slavery and I have to admit I am a tad bit conflicted and confused on the subject. This could be because of my bias as a white male in America so forgive me if I am just spouting non-sense. I would like to open this up for a discussion if anyone has anything to weight in. Hopefully we can partake in a genuine respectful and open discussion on the topic.

Does America owe its African American population an apology for slavery and compensation for years of abuse and exploitation? The general premise is that Americas great fortunes and institutions were build by and run on slavery causing an unequal disbursement of wealth in this country that persists to this day.
Did this happen?...Yes.
Is there inequality in America?.....Yes
Does this country need to have an open an honest discussion about race?...Yes
Is an apology and cash going to make that right?...No

Can an apology be meaningful today?
I walked away thinking about this. Can I give a meaningful apology for something I didn't take part in even though I may have benefited indirectly from the outcome? I thought about this in the context of my life, I have to make things relevant, it is what I do. Now I am Swedish...Do I owe the Irish monks and there descendants and apology because my ancestors the Viking slaughtered them? Does a problem exist today between the Swedish people and the Irish? (Infull disclosure I am still waiting for a answer to that question having emailed several individuals in both countries who specialize in international relations)But honestly I don't feel bad about it. Even though they plundered the monasteries and looted the villages in order to build wealth and ships for exploration that may or may not have benefited me 8-10 generations later. It took place in historical context.

What happens if we make it official?
What is the big deal about making it official? I think that in the hearts and minds of everybody in this country we know that slavery is wrong. It is blasphemed in our textbook and national monuments. I even looked and at least 8 presidents have spoken on the subject about the ills of slavery and its damnation. Would it really make a difference if president bush did one more? Would racism go away? Would people really feel better?
And I don't want to sound callus, I understand the value of asking for forgiveness I do, I just don't think I have the ability to offer a meaningful apology for slavery and if I can't can the president?

Thomas Sowell writes "A national apology also betrays a gross ignorance of history. Slavery existed all over the planet, among people of every color, religion and nationality. Why then a national apology for worldwide evil, what's next a national apology for murder?"
While I think he might be a little overstating the significance for accepting responsibility for ones action. I mean just because everybody did it doesn't mean that I don't have to own to the part that I played, but it does raise an interesting point to ponder. Is this only an American thing? Did the Egyptians apology to the Jews for using there labor to help construct the pyramids? The Romans? The Ottomans? The Persians? Why have other societies been able to walk away from the annals of history when we have been unable to?
Would $23,000 taxpayer dollars make racism go away? According to the article this is the amount that should be paid to descendants of slavery. Would this help? Would this really change anything?

I admit I have more questions than answers. My own bias is that we are looking to outside influences to blame, scapegoats, but I fear what I see happening if we don't resolve this issue. I see us becoming mired in the past as other nations and economies move into the future. I see it everyday and it scares me to death. It just seems like a lot of credit to give the government that don't feel that they deserve..

Friday, February 17, 2006

Ten rules for hooking up with a co-worker

*wrote this as a joke for our workplace newsletter*

As many of you know, Many years ago I began a scandalous affair culminating in co-habitation and shared property. I have learned a few tips over the years for working and dating together that you may find useful should you desire pursuing the skirt/pants in the next cube.

1.) Never declare you affection for someone in an email,it be forwarded on to HR. Instead, wait until they are leaving for the day and corner them in the parking lot.
2.) If you are going to make out during work in the parking ramp the best place to park is in the basement on the backside that faces 76th street.
3.) Do not stop the elevator to make out, it makes a dinging sound that is very unromantic and will draw unwanted attention.
4.) Watch out for the cleaning crew….THEY do go into conference rooms too!
5.) Keep the relationship quiet until you get some then tell everybody what a slut the other person was.
6.)Fake lunch meetings and then escape through the basement once you set a pattern of having lunch together you will be expected to do this everyday…highly annoying!
7.)People are going to talk, so give them something to talk about. Put your home movies online and send the links to your team.
8.)Don’t release anything illegal you may be doing or tell them anything for that matter as the last thing you want is it to end badly…like you in a cell with some guy named Chomper.
9.)All public displays of affection should be forbidden unless you are both married to other people and this is the only place you can make out then I understand and carry on.
10.) Most importantly be adults, be respectful, "No" means no…do not be creepy. We can all spank a little ass and still get the job done I am living proof.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006


*Note this did not actually happen, wrote this on a napkin at happy hour picturing it did though*

My face is flush
This time it is not the drink
At least not all of it
I sweat a little
My heart pounds
I am not ready
I don't know how to do this
She looks so good
Enter interruption
Enter interruption
Enter interruption
Where is an interruption
Nothing is coming
Its almost that awkward time
I have to move
Go you idiot
Do I smell?
Does she like me?
Is this too soon?
It is officially awkward
Here I go
Leaning in
Bumped noses
Cracked foreheads
Nervous laughs
Bodies that pull apart
Like hands touching hot pots
Good night
Can't believe I missed

Tuesday, February 14, 2006


So tired I can't sleep.
Restless has a double meaning.
This bed is too big now.
Alarm clock too bright.
I can't slow my thoughts down.
They seem to come faster,
When I shut my eyes.
People, Places, Tasks, Regrets.
I can still get four hours of sleep.
To do lists, check boxes, stress.
If I just keep my eyes shut,
I will be able to sleep.
I can trick myself,
Into believing I slept.
I can still get a half hour.
I can work on a half hour.
I have done it before.
I finaly feel like I could sleep.
The Alarm goes off.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Walls made out of sticks and stones...

are nothing compared to the ones made out of words..

I am not really sure where I am going with this post so bear with me.

I have been studying language lately both in school and in my personal life and it has begun to take ahold of my thoughts lately. I see the world in English. I experience the world in English. What do I mean? Bejaka (bay-ah-kah) is a Swedish word it has a literal translation of "affirmation of life" but its meaning is far more than a greeting it is a welcoming to all vicissitudes that life may bring and that you recognize an understanding and acceptance of people and things as they are. All of that in one word. Took a small paragraph to describe it in English. In English things are separate they have attributes properties, they are not connected. For example almost every language has a single word for smoked fish. Not two separate words that divide and describe the object. Do we divide and describe each other without ever really knowing it?

Effects on thought. I can only think about and describe the world in the words that I know. So does expanding my vocabulary expand my ability to think about the world?

And what are the effects of slang, is it a shared experience that builds culture community or is it a communicational prison that isolates the user from people outside that community?

Just starting to muse the subject...

Friday, February 10, 2006

The cheese stands alone

I starting at the single life for the first time in my adult life, and I have to admit I am feeling a little daunted, overwhelmed and well frankly a little insecure. I have gotten a little pudgier than I have been before, I am a little more of a mess with a few more storage rooms of baggage. I am an introvert who has never been alone. Please don't misunderstand me I am in no rush to date or find somebody or anything of the sort, but I find myself starting to think about what I would want in my partner or partners if I am lucky..lol.

If I gave you my superficial metadata ideals they would probably be a woman on the taller side...since I am taller and things tend to not, um, fit right if she is too short, nice legs, dark hair and of course incredibly horny, a massage expert, bi-sexual, open minded and loves to wait on me and do housework.

To say what I really would like is probably a lot harder to describe and find...but she is smart. In a book sense and in an I did that one time at band camp sense.

She has set goals and has achieved enough of them to know that she can do what she puts her mind too.

She has taken risks and been both burned and successful and has learned from them

She has been hurt...she has learned how to talk about being hurt.

She will take me to task on things. Don't let me just spout nonsense. I have never been a fan of the smile and nod women..speak up..but she knows how to do it respectfully

She is a little more outgoing than me. I tend to go through these periods of seclusion and it helps to have someone there to pull you out. She is good in social settings.

She is not religious at least not in the lets go to church, baptize our children, marry in a church kind of way...this is a sticking point as it usually signifies two different philosophies on life that are often in my experience incompatible.

She has some passions and hobbies that are different than mine that she can teach me.

She wants to have kids.

She doesn't laugh at the size of my penis.

She understands being a partner isn't always 50\50 we can carry the load, burden for each other at times, we work together.

She will cook with me..I love to cook, also love to go out to eat and drink.

She can let me have my space...sometimes I just need to go to the cave alone to recharge that is just me...just how I am wired

She knows that I am a mess and she loves me for it.

I can be open about what I am feeling and it is not going to be seen as a weakness or used as a weapon.

There is a quote in the book 100 years of solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez has come the closest to what I would like to find "Both looked back then on the wild revelry, the gaudy wealth, the unbridled fornication as an annoyance and they lamented that it had cost them so much of their lives to find the paradise of shared solitude...they enjoyed the miracle of loving each other at the table as much as in the bed"

This might take a while to find so any help any of you can be of help in the unbridled fornication department that would be greatly appeciated. Please feel free to send or give booty I am in the book.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

The Man

Been thinking about the man lately and are you ready for this? This might be left field cause this is a drunken post. To the point that I am actually having to concentrate on the keys to type.

The man does not exist. The illusion of the man is creation of the collective population. In our inability to accecpt responsibility for our lives for our station, it is some one else's fault someone who has control....people only have the power that we surrender to them.
The people or manifestation that we often associate with the "man" the CEO, the dictator, the pope, god, the behind the scenes business man with an agenda are the people who understand the strenth and weakness of human beings the best and use that understanding of people to enrich themselves. They are not villains but rather they are acute students of human nature.

We are all our own wizard of oz....instead of looking up the food chain for a handout for an apology lets roll up our sleeves and look to the people who are standing shoulder to shoulder with us....we are in control of our own destiny.

I am responsible for my life and need to motivate, discipline and reward myself....ps I need to light a fire under my own ass...that is all

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Cut a little too deep

Ever have so much to say to someone that you didn't even know where to begin so you just don't say anything? It is one of the slowest ways to torture a relationship. Like sealing a stadium filled with two people and pumping the air out one silent moment after another. Until all that is left is bitterness, sorrow and anger. All you need is time and silence. I am a serial killer. I am repressed rage. I am buried feelings. I am hurting. I am sadder today than I can ever remember being. I am a Hollywood set. I target bliss and skin it and tan it in my window. I target it because I want it yet and lack the ability to take care of it. Like a child with a puppy who has soon soiled an entire house before dying of hunger. I talk about accepting responsibly for self but don't listen to me, I am full of shit. Everything that happens to me is some outside force, some boogie man. I am very good at dodging the monsters that I have created. My life full of Frankenstein I have authored. Frankensteins who exercise every time I hold it in. Frankenstein that perch on my shoulders in ever increasing amount, that sit on my chest and make it had to breath, like a bully you have taunted who just won't get off of you.

I talked today, We talked today. We broke the noose of silence that was lifting us off this chair. I found my best friend again and I am forced to morn your loss all in the same day. Thanks for being my hero..... thanks for being the adult that I pretend to be...thanks for still holding my hand because I am scared...I don't know what life has in store for us, but I am glad that we have faced this part together and you will always have a key and friend just a phone call away...


Monday, February 06, 2006

Noise in a Crowd

Ever been in a crowded place when you were alone and shut your eyes and just listened? Noise rising in and out of focus, multiple streams of sound crescendo and then descend, blackholes leaking pitches, chatter, mindlessness, overlapping incomprehensible vibrations, communication. The world is external, I am internal. I am an observer. Sound surrounds me, but meaning doesn't penetrate. Whirls and twirls, if this sound is a color it is dark mush. I am alone in a crowd, whispers, touches, shouts, compounding syllables, relational vibrations, pockets of silence. I hear lies, distortions. We use vibrations to hide that what you can see if you look close enough. I know why this is like listening to a flock of birds. The Heard? I am part of the heard, the runt, the wolves are coming, I am alone in a crowd and a little drunk.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Just Sinking In

I am not sure
When it did begin.
I am sure I didn't fall in
Or jump in
Or ever fit in
I just kind of sank in
Slowly absorbed
A piece of furniture
An object
In someone else's museum
I am a human cobweb
It was a slow process
Time hates me
More than I hate myself
It was deliberate
Even if I didn't know it was happening
If you struggle
You sink faster
I didn't have that problem
I never struggled
I never stood ground
I waived a white flag
To Avoid a necessary war
To avoid suffering
To avoid feeling
I am alone
My bands of brothers have marched elsewhere
My decent was passive
One lie on top of another
One part of me for sale
Then another
Nothing is left
All is sold
I am a site cleared for development
I should be sad.
But I am finally happy
This is my beginning
Rising up
Coming back
Finding me
Taking arms
Breathing in
Letting in
Dropping guards
Making right
Breaking free
Feeling me

Friday, February 03, 2006


This is from Rocket...Funny thing about this is for some reason I feel the need to embelish my responses so that my life seems more interesting and edgy, to the point that I went through this a second time and changed 7 of these answers to reflect the truth where I was going to falsify information to make myself seem cool....just an interesting aside, why do I feel the need to do that?

Last as of 7:30 this morning

Last Alcoholic Drink:: Beer...Honey Weiss(sp):)
Last Car Ride:: To work
Last Kiss:: Thursday Routine Kiss...
Last Good Cry:: Watched crash like two weekends ago and the scene where the daughter runs in front of the gun because she has her magic cloak on made me lose it.
Last Library Book checked out:: Don Quixote spanish extra credit
Last Movie Seen in Theatres:: Fun with Dick and Jane
Last Book Read:: Cockburns Agile Development\ Chomsky's Hegemony or Survival
Last Movie Rented:: Unfortuantly it was the Ring II, even more unfortuatly was the fact that I watched the whole thing.
Last Cuss Word Uttered:: Fucking Asshole
Last Beverage Drank:: non-alcohal was diet cherry coke
Last Food Consumed:: black bean nachos
Last Phone Call:: From Mom
Last TV Show Watched:: Family Guy
Last Time Showered:: 5:45am this morning
Last Shoes Worn:: Brown
Last CD Played:: James Blunt
Last Item Bought:: Pack of certs @ SA
Last Download:: stickam....www.stickam.com webcam for myspace and backroom
Last Annoyance:: My shoe laces are all messed up, knotted, couldn't get them off...uggg
Last Disappointment:: Can I say my review with all the people who read this at work? I was just disappointed in myself for not being agrssive enough.
Last Thing Written:: Does this count? No..then letter to Anne..PS I need your new address:)
Last Key Used:: House Key or ")" if you want to be technical
Last Word Spoken:: technical, I say out loud everything I type. Anyone who has webcamed with me after a few drinks will laugh at this.
Last Sleep:: Last night, I fell asleep around 12:15,Got up at 5am today.
Last Sexual Fantasy:: Something to do with Anna and Kelley pillow fighting in highheels then squirting honey all over each othr and licking it off.....brb
Last Weird Encounter:: Sent a weird email to someone I barley know...
Last Ice Cream Eaten:: Ben and Jerrys Cherry Garcia
Last Time Amused:: Quote Rocket Sent me or that onion thing rocket send me or the outsourcing article rocket sent me...Rock you amuse me..lol
Last Time Wanting To Die (figuratively):: On my drive home last night, but that's another posting for another day
Last Time Hugged:: Last night maybe? or Josh and something to do with Ants?
Last Time Scolded:: I usually am pretty good at blocking this out...but I have been getting the silent treatment for a few days now.
Last Chair Sat In:: My desk chair at work.
Last bowel movement:: 11:15am de la tarde
Last Underwear Worn:: boxers that have blue and white stripes
Last Shirt Worn:: Right now pink with little white checkers
Last website visited:: www.startribune.com

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

I Play Fetch with Myself

Motivation has been a struggle off and on with me for my entire life. I go through ebbs and flows of building modern marvels to loving the couch, bon-bons and my bath robe a little too much. From passionate pursuit to I don't give a fuck in .o6 seconds. I have tried a small arsenal of pills in my life aimed at making me a model human being, curbing bouts of depression, adding focus, reducing stress and evening out my behavior, but all of them have failed. Probably because I am not physically sick and more normal than I would like to admit. What I have taken to doing with some great success is dangling my own carrot in front of me. I have learned to play fetch with myself. Inspire,throw and go or dream, plan and do however you want to look at it.

And you know what? For ever longer periods of time I have felt peace, calmness inspiration and joy.

Here are some of the things I do to inspire myself.....

1.) School...I love it. Every class I leave I look at the world differently I see the world fresh, it makes my dreams vivid and my mind wander to new places. I am graded there is a finish line and objective that I see being achieved.

2.) Books...Same reason as above

3.) Free First Saturdays at the Walker....Something about art that makes me see the world differently...Through values, composition, position image etc.Walker Art Center

4.) My sketch pad...B9 pencils, watching the light fall on an object. Shaping something with my own hand. It is an original piece that I made...no matter how shitty it is.

5.) Eat at a new place every month:) Experience the taste and texture of the world.

6.) Drink a Good bottle of wine. With friends sometimes and sometimes alone.

7.) Happy Hour:)

8.) Naked women. Come on your beautiful.

9.) Write in my journal every night.

10.) Go someplace and take a picture in each direction and write a story about it.

11.) Do moment in time writing. Something about doing them in the moment. What's it like outside? What sounds do you hear? Just being present in what I am writing.

12.) Streak naked even if it is just through my living room. Culminated in the penis flap dance....you heard me!

13.) Put my head phones on and dance...dance I said.

14.) Long walk by myself.

15.) Text Twist or Chess!!!

16.) People in my life

17.) Setting goals and then knocking them the fuck out of the park.

18.) Burn everything I did once a year and start over. If you haven't done it in the last 12 months it doesn't count. This means every year on October 31st I burn something that reminds me of all of my success and all of my failures. Mine is on Halloween just because I love the energy of that night. Then I get back to work! I plan for the next year. Don't rely on past success! Anybody can be a one hit wonder, but not everybody can come back.