Category Archives: personal growth

The Modern Procrastinator

Bells, whistles and default system sounds emanate from various devices around my person.

They remind me of personal tasks that I must accomplish or my world will reach chaotic mass and implode, or not.

In my situation, not is the norm. I am the most technically savvy and organized procrastinator on the planet.

There is not a device that I own that is not set up to remind me of something that must be accomplished with the future of my world at stake. As a single man, procrastination about cleaning the bathroom ranks just as risky as SPECTRE’s latest plot.

My phone contains location based reminders of items that must be accomplished around my home. Upon entrance to my garage, it shouts out with attention grabbing noises and reminds me of the items that I promised my self I will get done at home. Time based reminders are so passé.

I’ve got location reminders setup for when I reach home and when I leave home. Yes, I have them coming and going. I have reminders set for particular things I absolutely have to buy at a particular store. The problem is that I’m not much of a shopper. I rarely frequent a store unless I have a pressing need. New underwear falls into that rare category. Procrastinator and underwear do not appear in relative proximity in my lexicon.

One of the few shops I frequent with any regularity is my local coffee shop. I really do not need a reminder to buy coffee while I am there. It’s on the same level of the grocery store , I am hungry therefore I shop. Just now I was interrupted by my microwave reminding me I just warmed up a cup of coffee. I ran to it like it was a long lost love. Actually it kind of was.

When all is said and done, it usually has been my devices having a lot of say and I getting nothing done, except of course if coffee or underwear is involved. After work and a round trip two hour commute, most leftover energy is being sapped by the sinus headache I have 70% of the time. I have a very small window with which to accomplish outside chores. If my world is not going to implode as a direct result of not doing the task it probably will not get done within the first 5 appearances of said reminder.

Doing laundry usually involves underwear so that task gets taken care of upon first appearance of it’s scheduled reminder. Currently I look at my device reminders as a record of shame reminding me of all the things I have not accomplished. I am currently scheduling surgery on said sinuses hoping to shrink the size of my archive of failure. This event currently falls within the same priority as clean underwear so I know the status of that task will soon be done.

Work for me is a different story, I am a work-a-holic and procrastinator is not part of the job description. I do not need a reminder that dings and pops up text mentioning something like “work your self to death.”

I seem to have an internal scheduling device that I am not very savvy about. I can’t seem to turn that one off.

Meme Throw Down

The Rules of The Meme Throw Down

When in the course of Facebook events, it becomes necessary for one friend to dissolve the friendship of another friend through the powers of the internet, one must reevaluate the separate and equal station to which the natural laws of meme-dom* apply and that they require a decent respect to the opinions of internet friends.

We hold the rules of the Meme Throw Down to be self evident but in the name of friendship these rules are worth revisiting.

The system of which by one declares a winner in an arena where memes are pitted against each other is one which is primarily ruled by the emoji-score. **

Emoji-Score Calculation:

Thumb – The thumb , in most polite cultures , means that someone unequivocally agrees with you. Award one point for each thumb to your meme. If however you live in an impolite culture you are probably way too stressed to even get on FB and when you calm down you should spend more time on improving your society or getting out of prison.

Heart – The heart is straight forward and leaves no room for ambiguity. Someone loved your meme. Award two points for each heart to your meme.

Laugh – Laughter is highly valued in real life. It is the same in FB Land.
Your meme brought laughter into someone’s life. Award yourself 3
points

Wow – The wow emoticon is ambiguous. It could mean “Wow, That was Amazing.” But was it amazingly beautiful, disgusting or did it really mean “I’m amazed your haven’t been picked up by the authorities . Award no points to your meme for each Wow.

Sad Tear – In general the sad tear is also fairly obvious (see mitigating factors for exceptions). It means your meme caused unhappiness. It is the opposite of the laugh and is rarely a positive thing unless the intent of your meme is to bring attention to saving a living thing.

If you had no intent of saving a living thing deduct three points.

If your intent was to save a living thing than award your meme three points.

Angry Face. – The bottom line here is that you ticked someone off. If you think that you could tick someone off, don’t do it. This is the internet , this does not have to be in real time. You can engage your brain before you commit something. Yes, surprisingly enough I engaged my brain while I wrote this and edits were involved. These people are your friends. You don’t purposely try to anger your friends do you? If the answer is yes please deduct four points for every angry face, stop reading this post and seek the nearest counselor. As with all emotions there are grey areas. Refer to the mitigating factor section for more details.

Mitigating Factors.
– How people will react to your meme can be unpredictable and does not follow a normal distribution. Yes, sometimes, I am captain obvious. That said their frame of mind is something that could predetermine their reaction.
If their reaction seems to be an outlier you can choose to ignore the points but please do not ignore them. If their reaction gives your pause you may want to reach out to them and find out how they are. No joke here, I’m serious.

The Last and Most Important Rule.

Insults never change an opinion or successfully champion a cause.
If a meme uses the words, idiot, moron or derp you may want to reconsider your need to post the meme.

In many ways an internet meme is a lot like a bumper sticker. You have to ask your self if displaying the sticker is going to incite road range at the very most or change an opinion in the very least. The last time I checked Tibet is still not free and NFL fans still follow the Raiders , Patriots etc …, no matter how insulting the bumper stickers get.

*Hey meme is a word
Meme – a humorous image, video, piece of text, etc., that is copied (often with slight variations) and spread rapidly by Internet users.
DERIVATIVES
memetic |mēˈmetik, mə-| adjective
ORIGIN
1970s: from Greek mimēma ‘that which is imitated,’ on the pattern of gene.

Meme-dom however is not but if you have read my stuff before you know the power of the hyphen to transform pure B.S. into fine literary prose.

** See smart aleck comment #1 and substitute ‘emoji’ and ‘con’ adding hyphens where you are felt they are needed. Yea in the old days we called them emoticons but someone , a marketer no doubt, decided the name had to be shorter and cuter.

Finding Eternal Calm in a Chaotic World (Dante-ism)

Meditation.
-the action or practice of meditating: a life of meditation.
• a written or spoken discourse expressing considered thoughts on a subject: his later letters are intense meditations on man’s exploitation of his fellows.
ORIGIN Middle English: from Old French, from Latin meditatio(n-), from meditari (see meditate) .

We can practice meditation at any time and in many forms in our lives. Some of us practice it without realizing it.

I myself have been a longtime practitioner of something I like to call Dante-ism. It is an exercise in relaxation. The goal is to imagine a new level of hell for someone and through that visualization melt away the feelings of stress that you are currently experiencing. Dante probably imagined quite a few more levels than nine. I am sure he had to cut it short due to deadlines. I myself have blown way past double digit figures.

I find Dante-ism particularly effective while driving. Case in point. I find myself at a four-way stop sign waiting for a couple to exit the crosswalk when another car jumps their turn. I calmly let the tension go as I design a new level of hell for the driver; a time slightly less than eternity spent waiting for pedestrians at a crosswalk while an infinite stream of cars jump the gun. Not quite satisfied, an additional inspiration adds the coup de gras. The car stereo of the perpetrator will now be playing that one Rick Astley song (“ never gonna give you up …”*) in a loop. There are two dangers for you the designer when crafting these scenarios. The first is that you may visualize the imagery for too long forcing the drivers behind you to taylor a level of hell specifically for you. The second danger is that you run the risk of being stuck with that blasted song in your head the rest of the day.

I find Dante-ism to be especially calming in cases where a narrow escape from death has just occurred and the culprit is the carelessness of others. This experience is more common for those who commute to work but may also occur for those who actively participate in life as the role of an innocent pedestrian. The cases in this category that I am familiar with are usually attributed to someone not paying attention. The pedestrian scenario can provide more of a challenge when crafting a new level of hell if the perpetrator is sans automobile. In this case there is no vehicle with with which to imprison the guilty for all eternity and more imagination is required to craft the ultimate floor in your ever increasing high rise of hell.**

One may find that writers block is getting in the way crafting a sufficiently annoying level of hell. In such cases the afore mentioned cross walk scenario works well in a pinch. The idea of the guilty forever unable to cross an intersection can be quite calming. Throw in the video for that Rick Astley song in a loop on his smart phone and you have the ingredients for nirvana. Limit this scenario to cases where you have tried mightily but can not quite come up with an adequate scenario to achieve that state of calm that may be desperately required. Instead, use the opportunity to challenge your imagination. Bystanders can often be incorporated into the scene to help trap the perpetrator in time.

Creating the added annoyance factor is where ones imagination can be really be stretched. While I find it hard to fathom that someone would not find Rick Astley annoying, and neigh I say enjoyable, improbable events do occur in life and there is plenty of irritating songs out there to choose from. It is not important as to whether the perpetrator will find it maddening, it’s all about you . Remember meditation is a means to achieve personal growth and is meant to be a rewarding experience.

*I can’t bring myself to continue.
**Good band name by the way. I am thinking something in the Death Metal genre