FEELS, SOUNDS

Next Week I’ll Be A Student (Again)

I shall be returning to school this fall to formally train in the medical sciences. The scope of what I’ve been doing these last couple of years has revolved around this line of work, so it seems like a natural fit. At first I appreciated the fact that I still had a job to do regardless of whether or not a provincewide COVID-19 lockdown was in effect, but along the way I had the pleasure of working with some actual professionals in the field, finding myself greatly admiring the fact that their culture values things like compassion and lovingkindness. A complete about-face from the vicious cutthroat slash-and-burn world of information technology.

My former boss in Toronto had an original A.Y. Jackson as part of her office décor, but an entire canoe soundly owns that shit.

Don’t get me wrong, I love building web apps. But to me, building an app has always been more of an endeavour than a job. Something one willfully devotes a great deal of time and elbow grease to simply because doing so provides joy and contentment, like a vintage Harley Davidson being restored in the garage. The presence of a corporate manager constantly breathing down my neck about how the Harley must be street-legal by a particular date always killed the joy for me. It felt like being told I have only three minutes to get my rocks off during a sexual encounter.

Are we men or are we rabbits?

Unfortunately, our health care system is in shambles. A lot of essential medical personnel have either retired early or entered a different line of work. Not just because of the stress of dealing with the pandemic (which is taxing enough on its own), but also because of the psychotic behaviour of certain misguided souls who get all their medical information from Karen from Facebook and react to any request to get vaccinated as if it’s a demand that they cut off their penis. We all know the type…

However, I’m certainly no stranger to people exhibiting abnormal ways of thinking driven by fetishized superstitions and old wives’ tales. The formative years of my childhood were spent listening to my grandfather proclaim young-earth creationism the Truth with a capital T, denouncing those geologists who have actually studied the earth and heartily beg to differ as harlots of Satan (his arguably disturbing obsession with what consenting gay men choose to do with their own genitals warrants a separate blog post). A decade or so later, my mother found instant validation for her hatred of my teenage self’s favourite bands in then-current conspiracy theories about satanic backmasking, and would hear nothing of her validation being built on a pile of sensationalist horseshit that was designed to exploit the ignorance of white suburban mothers and scare them into giving more money to the church. This is to say nothing of the fact that I used to work for somebody who eventually went insane and stabbed a guy. In part because she fell for that silly old li(n)e about God having a plan for her life. Thus I’m pretty sure I can handle whatever the cultists throw at me. I’ve been told (recently) that I have the patience of a saint.


SIGHTS

Is The New World Rising from the Shambles Of The Old?

Last October I constructed a scarecrow-like entity for the annual sacrifice to the autumn sun. An effigy of myself constructed of dry foliage and old clothes and a couple of pruned branches held together with twine, to serve as a physical personification of everything I would like to lose in the coming year. Just for shits and giggles, I used a cardboard cutout of Jason Kenney for its face.

Idolizing any politician is a bit like believing the stripper really likes you.
If this offends you, see caption to the previous image.
You can see a shades-donning Grinch in the flames if you know where to look.

A few weeks ago I revisited the site where this sacrifice occurred, and saw that it had begat new life. It was probably just the THC, but a small part of me was briefly tempted to conclude that the shit Jason Kenney has for brains added more nutrients to the soil.

To everything there is a season. Turn, turn, turn.

TASTE

A Question of Balance

I actually halted working on the book for about a month. Mostly because I’d reached a point in the narrative where the focus shifts to the villainous faction of the story. There was a question I philosophically wrestled with during that time on whether the (impartial) third-person narrative voice should adopt a tone for this chapter that’s in any way different from earlier chapters that focused on the hero and his trusty sidekick. On the one hand I really want to convey the innermost workings of the antagonist’s head, but on the other hand I want to avoid telling the audience what to believe about him. A certain equilibrium between the two would be ideal. It’s a matter of knowing when to lean to one side and when to lean to the other. Not the easiest hike, but I’m forging ahead with it.