april

Better Man, by Pearl Jam

Waitin’
Watchin’ the clock
It’s four o’clock
It’s got to stop

Tell him
Take no more
She practices her speech

As he opens the door
She rolls over
Pretends to sleep
As he looks her over

She lies and says
She’s in love with him
Can’t find a better man

She dreams in color
She dreams in red
Can’t find a better man

Talking
To herself
There’s no one else
Who needs to know
She tells herself

~ Better Man, by Pearl Jam (a favorite song of the last week)

Uncle Mousey alvin April 26, 2019 - 12:43pm

The name Homer on The OA reminded me that my uncle was named Elmer, but we knew him as Uncle Mousey. He was a famous jazz drummer, and he called everyone Cat or Cool Cat. When he visited, my dad made him smoke his special, hand-rolled cigarettes outside (and often joined him). Here’s a short video of him on the drums with some other cool cats. :)

(Men in the Alexander clan don’t live long. He passed away at 66, my dad died younger than that, and their other brother — who was a favorite cool cat — died in his 40s. I assume complications related to mast cell disease was involved in there.)

Self-administering intravenous medicine with a PICC Line

April 24, 2015: I don’t know how you spend your mornings, but these days I spend 40 minutes each morning administering intravenous medicine to myself via a PICC Line that has been inserted/installed in my arm and chest. You can read about the whole experience in my diverticulitis diary if you’d like.

(April 24, 2017: Today marks the 11th consecutive month that I haven’t required a trip to the ER, which is pretty much a record for my last four years.)

Joe Armstrong: Why OO Sucks

Famed programmer Joe Armstrong passed away this weekend. He created the Erlang programming language, based on the actor model, and without using Google, I’m pretty darned sure that Erlang had an impact on Akka, the very cool actor library for Scala. Here’s an article Mr. Armstrong wrote some years ago, titled, Why OO Sucks (OO as in OOP).

Moon Baby by Godsmack

I edited Chapter 6 of my new book whilst listening to Moon Baby by Godsmack. I’m not sure I can be held responsible for whatever ended up in that chapter. :)

Feel Like A Number

A couple of things happened recently that make me feel like a piece of meat in the organ grinder of life. First, I was in talks with a publisher about publishing a book with them, and their contract began, “You grant to Us ... the exclusive right to ... sell and otherwise commercially exploit your Work.” I thought, “Well, I guess that’s what work is about, organizations exploiting your work for their commercial profit,” but their writing felt dirty and sleazy, like it was totally controlled by a scumbag lawyer or CEO.

Next, I live in the Terracina apartments in Broomfield, Colorado, and they were recently bought by a new company. With the old company everything here felt like a family, but when the new company bought the place they fired the previous staff, and with most of the new staff it feels like I’m just a number. When I walk in the office the reception feels like, “Number 232 ... you always complain that your kitchen range is vibrating because your downstair’s music is so loud, what do you want? We’re trying to make a lot of money here and you’re a troublemaker.” Twice the office manager has barely looked away from her computer monitor while talking to me.

Both situations remind me of the Bon Seger song, Feel Like a Number.

The Soul Game

[This is a chapter from a currently-unpublished book I’m writing on meditation and mindfulness.]

As a spiritual being, one possible way to think of life here on Earth is as a “game” that serves as a training ground for the soul. It’s a game like other games, so it has many levels, and they get harder and harder as you progress. So in this case, the better you become at the game of spirituality — the Soul Game — the harder the levels become.

To help set some rules for the game, let’s say that it has fifty levels. The first time you play the game you’re born here on Earth in Level 1. Hopefully you score some points and move up, so maybe by the time it’s “game over” for your first lifetime, you’ve passed Level 9 and you’re playing on Level 10. Maybe you get a brief break in between lifetimes, but the next time you’re born you start right where you left off, at Level 10.

This brings me to a very important rule: Once you start playing the Soul Game, you’re strapped in for eternity. (That was clearly mentioned on page 52 of the End User License Agreement.) Once you’re in the game there are only two ways out: