Pointless Musings

thoughts, music

Jungle

I've been listening to early-to-mid-90s jungle music (example [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2A3JMSdxsM]) on YouTube in the mornings while I study, and its profound optimism has become infectious. It's hard for me to articulate exactly what about it is so inspiring, other than its sense of warm expansiveness. It's the sound of a future that isn't grim, but inviting and full of possibility. This is the kind of music you blast in the spaceship while flying around the galaxy meeting aliens. Th
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1 min read
thoughts, cities, life

New World

I read a piece in Strong Towns recently where a developer tasked with designing a disposable commercial development asked for advice on how to make it into something worthwhile. The response was essentially: "This will never be good as it is bad in its fundamentals and aims, but you can make it convenient. And don't worry about it even if you fail, because it will be gone in 100 years anyways." I've been thinking about the latter part of the response for over a week now. I drive around town thin
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3 min read
life, work, travel

Berlin

I've been feeling an overwhelming sense of exhaustion with America lately. The polarization is at an all-time high, the countryside is hollowed out, the cities are dysfunctional, the culture is lowest common denominator, and our demographics are collapsing. I haven't encountered a healthy community that wasn't upper middle class (or richer) since I was a kid. Everything is worse every day, with no end in sight. It doesn't matter which party is in charge, because the issues are structural and tra
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1 min read
life, religion

Lent 2021

We're a couple of weeks into Lent, and personally it's probably the best Lent I've yet had. I set myself some strict personal challenges with the goal of defeating a particular vice that got its hooks into me many years ago. I'm not free of it yet, but I've gone 2 weeks so far without falling back into the vice, despite many urges. (Pray for me that I endure until the vice is rooted out of my heart.) I had an important realization this week while grappling with this sin: our urges, desires, fan
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3 min read
life, technology, thoughts

Nostalgia

I've lately found myself deliberately reaching back to the 80s and 90s, whether it's watching old television (especially news) on Youtube, or calling my family up to discuss our experiences, or even listening to music while I work. If I recall a now-defunct business I google it to discover how it fell apart (RIP Waldenbooks), and in my daydreams I'm walking through the mall again, around 1995, when all the stores were full (and none of us knew an opiate addict). I wasn't sure exactly what subcon
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3 min read
meta

Futzing

I told myself (and wrote here, semi-publicly, I guess) that I was going to spend most of the time writing and not futzing with the website, but I ended up spending all my time futzing with the website before tossing it all out because I hated it. Cool. I'm going to actually try and stick with my original plan going forwards: a little bit of site work daily, but putting most of my dedicated blog time into writing. I'm obviously using the site futzing as an excuse to procrastinate about my writi
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1 min read
life

(Re)Formatting

I'm trying to juggle writing content for the site with adjusting its formatting. I have to reconcile myself to the fact that I'll be fighting with the layout for months. I went with one of these Gatsby starter themes, but it's not at all what I want, but I figured it would be easier than writing the entire site from scratch. I'm not so sure about that now, but whatever: it's an excuse to work on my frontend skills, which are ... meager. Today I decided to make some changes, push them to Github
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3 min read

First Post

I've started a blog. I want to improve my writing over the course of 2021, so I'm making myself write a little bit every day. I'm going to write about whatever I feel like and see what themes and forms emerge out of that. Thanks for reading.
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1 min read