Friday, February 21, 2003

UnderstandingYour Introvert

Caring For Your Introvert, by Jonathan Rauch.

A lovely article. I'm going to take one sentence to heart. "I'm an introvert. You're a wonderful person and I like you. Now, please shush."

It really isn't personal, truly, but if you don't give your introvert appropriate space, after a long enough period of time they will break and say whatever is necessary to get you to GO AWAY. This includes the kinds of things that can get them fired, you fired, or cause divorces. So give us our space.

My only complaint about the article? It's too short. A complete second article (paper! probably) is necessary to discuss extrovert-introvert interactions, recognizing and responding appropriately to your other-verted boss/subordinate/spouse.

Or you could just read David Kiersey's Please Understand Me, or Please Understand Me II.

Thanks, Medley, for the link!
Snow on Mars


NASA's Mars Odyssey Points To Melting Snow As Cause Of Gullies

Thursday, February 20, 2003

Don't Boycott Your Vote!

ATLANTA -- If Georgia holds a referendum on the state flag, many blacks won't participate, civil rights leaders warned Wednesday.
A group including the NAACP, Concerned Black Clergy and labor unions vowed to boycott a statewide vote on returning the Confederate battle cross to prominence on the state flag. Black leaders called it insulting to even ask blacks whether they wanted to see a return to the Georgia flag of 1956-2001, which is dominated by the rebel emblem.
"Would you expect the Jewish community to participate in a campaign to raise the Swastika?" said the Rev. Joseph Lowery, former head of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.

I have two remarks regarding this. One, Rev Lowery's analogy to Jews and the swastika is quite apt, and many Americans ignore this. We tend to not see the systematic oppression of black slaves as equal in horror to the Holocaust, I believe, for two reasons: the Holocaust was about genocide, supported by racism, and took place over a timespan of less than a generation. Slavery in America was about economics, supported by racism, and was institutionalized for generations.

Two, it is unthinkable to suggest that you -- especially the native you, the black you, and the female you -- boycott voting on a subject because it's 'such an insult'. That you deliberately disenfranchise yourself, that you remove your input from determining if a referendum will pass. No, no, no.

The way to swing your political weight is to do the exact opposite: vote. Vote in droves. Make your friends register. Drive your neighbors to the polling place. The idea of a public referendum is to let you speak your piece, and you do that by voting.

Boycotting applies economic pressure to a corporation, and it's a decent tool for the job, since corporations live in their pocketbooks. Governments have pocketbooks, too, we know that, but the constitutionally guaranteed way for the average slob to apply pressure on our government is called voting.

To suggest that black voters in Georgia refrain from voting on this subject is to suggest they shut their mouths and give up control, and give it right back to the idiots who waited so long to hand over that vote in the first place.

If you don't use it, then what's the point in having it?


Tuesday, February 18, 2003

Grumpy Gus, Spinning, Weekend in Review

I am grumpy. Do not try to cheer me up. It makes me feel manipulated. And when I feel manipulated, that's just a micron away from sheer, foaming-at-the-mouth, unhinged, unadulterated rage.

<hulk>Don't make me angry. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry< /hulk>

Maybe not even a micron.

In other news, I

* Rescued stranded party-goers in the wee hours of Sunday morning. Beaucoup karma points for me, as they were going 20 miles south and I was headed 30 miles north, home after work. There was a fracas with their cabbie on the way home from a concert in Solana Beach and they got dumped. At about 1:30 in the morning. In Miramar. Near the business parks. Man, there was no one there. The McDonald's on that corner rolls up the sidewalk at 10pm. We're talking no one. Good Samaritan, that's me. Truckin' complete strangers around Pacific Beach at 2 am. One of them insisted on giving me 'gas money'. I've earmarked it for the first bum I see. I don't take money for this kind of stuff.

* Oiled and assembled and began spinning on my Kromski Minstral, one of the most beautiful spinning wheels I've ever seen. Spun up some brown "unspecfied sheep" and the loaves-and-fishes lavender roving (both of these are rather bulky) in double drive mode, then switched to my test merino (this beautiful pink stuff I'll only ever use as accent yarn, so it's OK if slubby) and spun up an okay single with the wheel in single drive with scotch tension

[*quizzical look* What did that mean? There's 2 things that need to move aside from the big-ass wheel you actually see when looking at a spinning wheel. And they move around one another -- the flyer and the bobbin (where your yarn actually goes). You use different 'ratios' with different yarns (thick stuff v. thin stuff). In order to get those two things to move at different rates (ratios) -- using just the one big-ass wheel to drive them, you either use double-drive, where your drive band (the string going around the aforementioned big-ass wheel) is actually 2 bands, one you put on the bobbin pulley and one on the flyer pulley (which are different sizes or slightly different heights relative to one another), or you use one band on both so they spin at the same rate, and then put a brake on the bobbin to make it go slower. That's single drive mode with scotch tension. There's more going on, but that's it in a nutshell. Most people only ever notice the big-ass wheel, but all the action is really going on between the flyer and the bobbin. I happen to have purchased a wheel capable of both, but they're not all like that.]

* Began reading a VERY irritating edition of the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius, presented as 'The Emperor's Handbook'. I didn't want a self-help book for the captains of industry with pullquotes in little gray boxes and an introduction that lasted forever, I just wanted the damn Meditations. I will finish it anyway. And then give it away when I find another copy. Maybe to a CEO.