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November 29, 2006

The Sceintific Method is what I need

I am thinking that in order to do and learn everything I wish to do and learn, I must apply a logical, methodical, detailed approach and progress based on experimentation and advancing knowledge. In other words, I need to learn from my mistakes and alter my perceptions and theories until the truth is uncovered. Science is really the uncovering of truths that already exist. So if truth is found there can be no argument. If there is argument, then truth has not been found and there is no science. So Leonardo tells me.
So now my quest begins to apply scientific method to my learning in all areas of interest. I will start notebooks and track my experiments and conclusions.
And since I started a new job, I did already start a work journal from day one. I now have 6-1/2 weeks of daily notes, which have come in handy already for formulating theories and strategies. Now I need a new method to use my observations and discoveries.
In language learning I have not progressed as I hoped, and partially it's because I do not apply the language learning principles I had already discovered and learned. I have not found better ways to learn. I have not found better ways to retain language information. So now I start a fourth journal - language learning. Did you know that in addition to this blog I have also kept a journal for the last several years that I carry around with me. In studying Leonardo di Vinci, I find I can really relate to him. I have so many interests, and so much I'd like to know and experience, there is no limit to what I could occupy my time with.
So I need better methods.

Posted by carl1236 at 6:57 PM

November 28, 2006

insecurity

Maybe the cure for insecurity is in security. Or maybe securing security secures more insecurity. If that is the case then insecurity is the cure for insecurity.

Posted by carl1236 at 7:44 PM

November 27, 2006

Spiritual Truth

What is truth anyway? Haha, everything is relative it seems! Truth to some people is a lie to others, depending on how we each view things. So what makes a good spiritual truth. I started compiling a list today:
1. Transcends time and space - applies equally to us now as it did centuries ago. The beatitudes are a good example: 'love your neighbor as yourself..' 'do to others as you'd like done to you'
2. Works even when under pressure. Maybe that's when they work the best? I don't know, if a person is transformed inside, they don't go around hatin' and beatin' on gay people or their wives, and road rage would not exist.
3. Applies to all people - All people can apply the truth. Even a developmentally delayed person. ie. Love your neighbor as yourself. Be nice to other people. Be nice to animals. Don't be greedy or selfish. Try your best.

Posted by carl1236 at 9:09 PM

November 26, 2006

The Magic, Sacred, Holy Book of Life

Do you want to know the meaning of life? Do you want the secret of life revealed to you? You can know for certain what you have been missing, if you just buy the book. This is no ordinary book. The book will transform you. The book contains the key to happiness, joy and success. Everything you have ever dreamed of can be yours! If you really want it.
The magic, sacred, holy book of life does not lie. IT grabs you like a prayer on the wind and carries you to the sky! When you open the pages you will not be able to put it down until they pry it from your cold, empty shell. You won't need a bookmark to remember where you left off. It'll be open to the page you need, when you need it all the time. You won't be able to lose your place or lose your way.
The wisdom of this book transcends the ages, because face it, even after centuries, we have not changed and it still applies! Do you want to know where to get this book? It's all around you. It's in you. It is experience and knowledge applied to your heart. It is the book of life you carry with you always. It's pages are filled with your pain and joy of survival. You live and breath by it. You make it each day and it's a magic, sacred, holy book of your life. It is alive. Once you have experienced and applied the wisdom of life, you cannot help but apply it. Go on live life! Learn! Be happy in knowing that you are doing it right and will arrive just the same. Apply the wisdom of experience. I have this book but I can't give you a copy of mine, because your book is different. Don't let anyone tell you theirs is yours. Because your life is your life to experience and fulfill. Yes fulfill. You are the author and the reader of your own book of life. You know, that magic, sacred, holy book of life you can't buy in stores or find on the shelves of the library, or download off the internet. It's yours already. Write it, read it, live it, enjoy it.

Posted by carl1236 at 6:47 PM

November 22, 2006

I need to read more, evidently.

I stopped by the bookstore on the way home and came home with seven more books! As if I had finished reading the last few books. Currently I am reading a book about Leonardo di Vinci as scientist. I'm about half-way through it. So tomorrow in honor of the blog site being down, I plan on reading. That is after I run a race, eat a great Thanksgiving meal and chat with family and friends. So I'm dedicating tomorrow evening to a book. Or two, or three.

Posted by carl1236 at 10:16 PM

November 21, 2006

A meaning of life

I was thinking about why we are here, in this life. Most people ask why at some point in life. Many people create elaborate theories about the meaning of life. But one of the most fundamental reasons we are alive is to carry on the species. We are living creatures like all of the other living creatures of this planet and we are wired to survive. To propogate the species and help it survive. Though we may not create offspring ourselves, we were created as offspring and will have some impact on this world and the lives of others. In this way the world goes around and around, generation after generation. We exist to continue existing. A lot of our behavoir in life stems from this basic purpose of life. This is A meaning of life. How do we proceed from there? We could start by not destroying our chances for survival.

Posted by carl1236 at 10:36 PM

November 19, 2006

Thanksgiving Day Run

After not having run in 5 weeks, I plan on doing an 8k running race in Hastings, MN on Thanksgiving Day morning. The Gobble Gait 8k/2k. I plan on using this as my inaugural get back into running motivator. I haven't been totally lazy, since I've been biking about 80 miles per week for the past five weeks, but I know it's not the same as running. I'm also signed up for a December 2nd Triathlon training plan workshop at the Uptown YWCA. I'm looking forward to developing a good training plan for the winter and preparing for my spring/summer goals.

Haha, so this Thursday I'll be burning off my turkey before the meal is even served!

Posted by carl1236 at 11:00 PM

November 18, 2006

The experience of giving a haircut for free.

Today I gave a haircut to a friend, using my Wald haircutting equipment which I bought to give myself haircuts. After giving myself enough haircuts to pay for the clippers, I decided it would be fun to share the wealth with others. So a long time ago I made an offer to give haircuts for free. It was kind of a funny, quirky thing to do, but I did it. No one took me up on the offer until recently though when my neigbor and then my friend Eric decided to do it. Haha, this one was an easy job though because he has short hair like me and just needed a cleanup. Thanks for the great evening Eric! That was fun hanging out and chatting and having dinner and talking bikes, computers and food stuff.
Now that makes haircut number two for someone other than myself. Anyone else want a free haircut? I'm sharing my wealth. Come on. It's free. Actuallly, it was really fun to touch base with Eric and see what he was up to and to just chat. Life can be fun and interesting when we treat each other well and with respect.

For reference here are my orignal posts concerning my haircutting adventures:
http://blog.lib.umn.edu/carl1236/dailyspirit/026911.html
http://blog.lib.umn.edu/carl1236/dailyspirit/056335.html


Posted by carl1236 at 9:19 PM

November 17, 2006

Who does God belong to?

If people really knew God, they would not have to think about this, let alone argue about it. To make a point I'm going to quote a quote out of a recent news article, so don't quote me on this...
"Such reactions don't surprise Israeli Historian Gershom Gorenberg, whose book "The End of Days" documents the fight over the holy site.
"Dig a centimeter beneath the debate over antiquities," he said, "and you hit the debate over whom the Mount belongs to, and a centimeter beneath that is the war over whom the entire country belongs to.""
Their argument is too old and to heated to resolve by me, but this quote kind of reminded me of something...People don't and never will 'own' God. But they sure love to try. Everyone loves to claim they 'have' the one and only God, or at least have the inside track or path to GOD. But eventually we all realize that we can never posess God. I mean that God is not an object to own, sell or barter with. God is not a weapon or a tool to convert or subvert others to fulfill our needs or desires. Like our driving need for POWER and CONTROL over others.
Dig a centimeter beneath the debate over the real God and you hit the debate over who God belongs to. And a centimeter beneath that is the war over who life belongs to.


Posted by carl1236 at 10:52 PM

November 16, 2006

New lights

The other day I fumbled through setting up some headlights on my commuter bike. It was an interesting and kind of expensive process. But in the long run it will work out ok.
First I bought an old dual-headlight Cyco light system with a 5-battery D-Cell battery pack. The package said it was "upgradeable" to a rechargeable system. So I went to the battery store and talked to them about getting rechargeable batteries. The simplest solution was of course to just buy rechargeable D-Cell batteries and a charger. So I did and I tried it. With both headlights on the batteries only lasted for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Not good. They died on me on my way home in the dark. So Tuesday night I went back to the battery store and bought a 3-hour rechargeable battery that fit in the little carrying bag that mounts to the bike, and of course I had to buy a charger for that.
Bringing the battery home, I had to try it right away, so I went to hook up the battery and discovered that the manufacturer had soldered the connectors to the battery pack. I dug out my soldering iron and tried to melt out the solder, but it was very difficult and time consuming. That stuff just doesn't want to 'flow' away from the metal it was attached to. I ended up getting it to 'flow' onto a needle, thus removing it from the connector. By the time I finished I was ready for bed. But the lights worked great. Well, these lights aren't the brightest but they are brighter than anything I've had before and I can see potholes and curbs in the dark.
So here is my winter-biking light strategy: I bought a second battery that I carry in my backpack along with my charger. I can make it all the way to work and home again with one battery fully charged. So I am happy with this solution, and I won't have to run out of light, especially since it's dark when I leave for work and dark when I go home.
Now for a little illumination of another kind. One of the volunteers that has helped us tremendously in our bicycle salvage operations at the bike shop has been writing about his experiences in dealing with colon cancer and the treatments that almost seem worse than the disease. Stephen is a little older than me, and has had his share of troubles in life, but when it comes to life itself, or the threat of losing it, it does change our perspective a little. Stephen also rides his bike all over for basic transportation, because as he puts it, it's good for him. Last night at the shop he was there in spite of having gone through chemo treatments that same day. You can read about his experiences here. I found it interesting and insightful. And I think Stephen has found writing about it kind of therapeutic. I like writing for some of the same reasons.

Posted by carl1236 at 6:21 AM

November 11, 2006

At the end of the day

At the end of the day we have to feel good about ourselves. Today a friend said this to me. Sometimes we do things just because at the end of the day we have to feel good about ourselves. Sometimes we do things just because they need to be done. And because we need to do them.
I don't know. Today I felt like I had to get some things accomplished. I did my best but I did not complete my tasks. I did some good things; worked on my bike which sorely needed it, worked on my programming tasks, took a nap, Ate lunch with the guys at the bike shop, and watched a movie. But I did not finish my programming task. I planned on going into work and implementing this small program on Sunday, but it doesn't look like it will work out the way I planned. I will spend all day on Sunday working on it. I just don't get why this is so difficult to understand. I'm so close to understanding but so far away. tomorrow I will solve this problem. And on Monday I'll implement it and save dozens of hours of work time. And in the long run, this software automation will be reused for other tasks. It will help me meet my deadlines for the project I'm working on. So at the end of the day, I have to feel good about myself. A few years ago I could have written this program in a matter of hours. Now I do not understand what I have forgotten. Now I will relearn and feel good about it. But it's kind of stressful to put myself under this kind of pressure. But sometimes solving problems under pressure is part of the solution to feeling good about ourselves when it's all said and done isn't it? When the day is over, did we do our best? If not, then tomorrow we have to. At least that's who I am. I have to. I'm happy with the results of the day, but I'm also looking forward to solving the problems I did not resolve today. At the end of the day we still have to feel good about ourselves. It leads to the next present moment of existence we will go through.

Posted by carl1236 at 11:51 PM

November 9, 2006

The end of the fourth week on my new job

Tonight I bought bagels and spreads to share with my coworkers tomorrow to mark my fourth week on my new job. I wish I could detail my experiences starting a new job, but it's too much. I do believe everyone goes through similar experiences though and I am taking copius notes. I will probably write about it when I recover from the shock of it all. ;-)
So tomorrow I am celebrating a whole month at my new job! I can hardly believe how fast it seemed. I am starting to feel more comfortable there but at the same time I feel like I'm on the edge of a cliff, in a precarious position. When will I fall? Not while I'm trying to solve problems and learn everything I can about what I'm doing. Troubleshooting is a an activity that takes care of time. It's all part of the process of starting a new job. And continuing in a job. And continuing in a job. To troubleshoot you have to care about finding a solution to the problems.

Posted by carl1236 at 9:02 PM

November 8, 2006

Bicycling Mayhem

Well, it's not winter yet, according to the current weather conditions, but it was cold for the last few weeks. I've seen a lot of people still out riding their bikes to and from school or work, in the dark, like me. It's been interesting doing about a 26-mile round trip three or four days per week. I'm starting to get used to it now and it's not a struggle. But yesterday and today were really bad bicycling days. Drivers have forgotten how to drive. Yesterday I got hit by a car that was zooming around the right side of some left-turning cars. It spun me around and bent my rear fender in so it was rubbing on my back wheel. With a hefty amount of force, I yanked it back out and my wheel was no worse for the wear. But it did shake me up quite a bit. I continued my ride to work and got a flat tire. The culprit was some kind of a weird hooked spike thing that penetrated deep into my tire. I patched it up in about ten minutes and was on my way again. Luckily it was fairly warm outside to do that in comfort.
Then today I was yelled at, spit at, had a young person fly through a stop sign nearly hitting me, without even seeing me and had something thrown at me which struck the back of my neck. It's odd to me that all of these cases were in Roseville and all three of them were driving big gas-hog vehicles: An SUV, a full-sized conversion van, a king-cab type pickup truck and a huge old boat-style car. Oh the power that gives to harrass bicyclists! They must feel so big in those things. Then tonight I heard about a friend who was sitting waiting for a stoplight to change and the car driver behind her was laying into the horn, yelling, "Get on the sidewalk!" and cussing. Evidently they were in a hurry and wanted to make a right turn. That made my friend more adamant about waiting for the light. She had a good point. It wasn't a right turn only lane and if there was a car there going straight, the driver behind would have just waited their turn. Nothing can be done about it when it's a car in the way, but if it's a bicycle then it's fair to harrass the driver waiting to go straight, right? Is this any way to treat fellow human beings? Come on people, is the extra few minutes gained from driving around recklessly worth a human life?
I put more reflectors on my bike tonight hoping to be a little more visible, but given the drivers out there, I think that's a false sense of security. Reflectors won't help their driving skills or their love for other people.
If you are in a car here are some lessons:

DON'T SPEED AROUND THE RIGHT SIDE OF CARS TURNING LEFT. JUST WAIT UNTIL YOU CAN BE SURE THERE ARE NO BIKES OR CARS ALSO TURNING LEFT COMING ACROSS IN FRONT OF YOU.

DO STOP FULLY AT STOP SIGNS AND ACTUALLY LOOK BOTH WAYS SO YOU DON'T RUN OVER A PEDESTRIAN OR BICYCLIST.

DON'T YELL AT BICYCLISTS OR SPIT AT THEM OR THROW THINGS AT THEM.

REMEMBER THAT IF A CAR HITS A BICYCLIST IT COULD KILL THEM. IF A BIKE HITS A CAR, THE CAR MIGHT SUSTAIN A DENT. THERE IS A HUGE DIFFERENCE IN THE AMOUNT OF DAMAGE A CAR CAN DO TO PEOPLE VS. THE AMOUNT OF DAMAGE A PERSON CAN DO TO A CAR, OR IT'S DRIVER. HUMAN LIFE SHOIULD HAVE MORE VALUE TO YOU. WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO PROVE? THAT YOU CAN KILL? GOOD FOR YOU. WAS IT WORTH IT? SLOW DOWN, PAY ATTENTION, TREAT HUMAN LIVES WITH MORE RESPECT. OH, AND SLOW DOWN. LIFE IS SHORT ENOUGH WITHOUT HURRYING THROUGH IT AS FAST AS WE CAN.

Posted by carl1236 at 11:16 PM

November 7, 2006

I voted

A friend asked me if I was going to go vote today and I jokingly said, "Yes, someone has to." I voted but seriously, why do so few people vote relative to our voting population? Do so few people care about the result?

Posted by carl1236 at 7:25 PM

November 6, 2006

What would Leonardo do?

First of all, have a desire to uncover and discover. Today was a Leonardo day for me. It was a good day for learning new things. I think because it was interesting to me. Therefore a key to learning is to make myself desire to know.

Posted by carl1236 at 8:48 PM

November 4, 2006

The disturbing news about being "Liberal"

It's sad how political ads are using the term "Liberal" as a smear word. As if it's bad to be "Liberal." It's sad that people think it's bad to give to others, even if it's expensive and it hurts our accumulation of wealth. We have some serious problems in our society and the answer is not to give less. We should be giving until it hurts. Until there is no human being left behind. Anywhere on the planet. The answer is not to cut the funding from social programs for the cause of putting more money in the pockets of the wealthy. It doesn't make a very compelling argument to do that and say at the same time how compassionate we are. But then again, compassion is a sign of weakness when it comes to wealthbuilding. It's so easy to not be compassionate for others in less fortunate situations when we are the ones who have. Try going without, putting yourself in their shoes for a week, month, year, a lifetime and see how you fare. Most people who have everything would not give it all up to do such a thing, because well, they have, and don't want to give it up. Yes, it's important to give to the less fortunate. Even if it hurts. It's the compassionate thing to do. If that makes a person bad I'd hate to be the alternative.

Posted by carl1236 at 9:45 PM