Monday, November 24, 2008

Giving Thanks in Grand Rapids

(Bush and Turkey. Turkey is happy. Bush is happy.)

We are off to Grand Rapids for our annual Thanksgiving visit to our old stomppin' grounds. Much eating and making of conversation is sure to be had. We are landing late afternoon on Wednesday the 26th and leaving on 30th mid afternoon. As much as we've tried, we've been unable to keep our schedule as open and flexible as we would have liked. If you're going to be in town and would like to hook up, give us a call or write us an email and we'll see if we can make our schedules cross yours.

We are going to be able to spend some quality time with the clan Forton, which is great, as we haven't been able to hang for an extended period in, well, years. Time seems to get away from us, especially living 18 hours driving distance (or spening $1,400 on airline tickets), and we never have enough time to spend with everyone as we'd like. Many people have taken us up on our offer to fly anyone out to visit (frequent-flier miles allowing). Mandy's parent's have visited twice, my Dad and Jan came out, Chad, Mandy, Jess and Mike, then Jess by herself, and Mandy's aunt, uncle, and cousins. It's good thing we invested in an apartment with a spare bedroom!

As much as we're geeked to be back in town, we are quite happy to not be there for Thanksgiving. It seems the holidays bring out the best and worst in people. Even with a conscious effort to avoid family drama this time around, it seems unavoidable. Maybe that is the problem; we spend so much time trying to avoid it, we lose sight of the fact that when you get all of the members of an extended family together, there is going to be some amount of friction, no matter what. I think my ability to disengage myself from the drama is hightened skill, but even with that I can't help but feel my blood pressure surge when I have to deal with people who are so stubbornly adicted to generating pointless drama.

As I said, it will be great to see everyone, but it will just as nice to not have to deal with the drama come Christmas.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Body Builders - Body Modification: Here it Comes!

(Holy God Almighty: Click her muscles for an image gallery of these beauties)

Can anyone make a good argument for how this isn't the most extreme form of body modification? In my humble opinion, Tatoos and branding don't even come close to this.

On the other hand, being an adherent to the principles and doctrine of the transhumanist movement (if you could call it that) I openly welcome extreme body modification. It's not like the ability to remake yourself in increasingly bizarre and Kafkaesque ways will get more difficult with time. So, it's not really a matter of being able to stop it, it's more a matter of being a happy or unhappy person when it arrives and others want to do it.

We don't all live in a vacuum, remember? Most people don't think exactly like you because, well, they're not you.

(The future US President: c. 2050)