Posted by: David | November 29, 2010

Geekin’ Out

It’s been a slightly weird Thanksgiving this year. Grateful as ever, don’t get me wrong, but as always, events conspired. Somehow I picked up an intestinal bug on or around Thanksgiving day. Thanksgiving day itself at the kids’ new home was great. We got home by 7:00. I took apart the turkey carcass the kids gave us and got the broth cooking. Then we relaxed into our backlog of DVR’d episodes of Lie to Me. After 3 episodes, I went to bed. But first I put the turkey broth pot out in our cold pantry to cool overnight. It would need to cook more tomorrow.

At about 2 in the morning I awoke in a cold sweat, nauseous, wondering if I’d be needing, or even be able, to haul my dizzy ass to the toilet to puke, vomit, yak, upchuck … you know how your mind rolls these things around while you’re frozen there in bed in the wee hours. And if you don’t, then you’re lucky. But there is such a wonderful collection of synonyms for ‘regurgitate’! One can only suppose that must be due to the amount of toilet hugging time spent by so many brilliant revelers and their hair-holding-back friends over the years, whilst waiting to de-food, gack, ralph, hurl, bark at the ants, or, finally, my favorite, throw a map. Well I just lay there, taking one short shallow breath after another, and eventually fell back to sleep.

Don’t remember much of anything about Friday. Slept through most of it. Managed to get the turkey broth back to cooking. May have done some reading, but I hope not, cause I won’t be remembering any of it. Had no appetite whatsoever, but did have a slight headache. So I was unable to do my customary Black Friday shopping trips. All my friends know how much I love to get out there into the fray bright and early, slashing away at the crowds with my machete and stamping their residue with my steel-toed boots so that I may get that precious gift for that special someone at the best possible price. That is the object of the game. No matter how many must die. Still though, I managed not to puke. And the house reeked of turkey broth, which I finally filtered and decanted, all achy and stuff. Didn’t wash any dishes. Slept all through Friday night too.

Saturday brought a stiff wind and the first accumulating snow.

Saturday continued the rest campaign. With more reading. Finished Jeremy Cabbage (lovely ending and would make a fun movie with Steve Buscemi as Jeriah Wirm, and Alan Rickman as the Baron, not sure who should play Jeremy and Polly, but I’ll keep thinking) and also did a bit of cooking. Made some turkey soup. Rather plain, with chick peas, onions, garlic, and parsley. We had it for dinner. With crackers. My wife wasn’t feeling all that well either.

Continued reading What Technology Wants. This is a hefty tome, as I mentioned before, and is the reason for the title of this post. The author’s prose is intellectually a bit stilted, but not so dense as to make it unreadable (like this sentence). It reads pretty well and at the halfway point I keep wondering whether it’s ever going to get to the point, or whether it already has a number of times and I’ve missed all of them. Which usually means that the point has some subtlety to it and really does need 359 pages to illuminate it fully. Or I’m just too dim. But I’m gonna stick it out, because I think I’m starting to get it. The title conveys the notion of technology as an cognizant entity, right? How else could it “want”? It could want in the same way that planet Earth wanted to create life forms. It’s not the kind of want we humans feel when dying for a Snickers bar, but rather the potential for something to crystallize given all the ambient conditions. The author called it “ordained becoming”. How humanity and technology have coexisted and grown through history is fascinating and meaningful in these times, where we’re now like a pair of whirling dervishes. Kevin Kelly (the author) is an enigmatic figure in many respects, and seems to me to be the perfect person to tackle this topic. Plus as a 20 something he went all ascetic, ditched his stuff, and rode all around the country on a bicycle. I think I may have more to say about this after I’ve finished reading it. It’s due at the library next Wednesday. Stay tuned.

Sunday was a nice day for the most part. Continued to rest. Still a bit achy and, uh, well I hate to say it, but … constipated and gassy. Just not right. But it was sunny so I got out into the greenhouse for a bit of reading and solar exposure. That was nice. For dinner we had more leftover turkey soup. Ug. There’s still some in the fridge. Didn’t sleep too well Sunday night, still very gassy. Apparently I’d turned our bedroom into a gas chamber. By 3 am my wife recommended I take some milk of magnesia. Which I did. It helped, but I decided I was not feeling up to work, so I emailed in sick. One more day to sun for an hour in the greenhouse and read. Hopefully Tuesday morning I’ll be right as rain.


  1. I’m sorry about the gas.

    Thanks Maleesha, that makes 3 of us. The pets sleeping in our room seemed undisturbed. Of course, the cat has been sleeping in our dirty laundry baskets lately. And the dog, well, he eats cat crap so human gas is probably like Eau de Toilette to him. What else can I say?

  2. Awwww….I’m so sorry you were sick. Hope your prediction was correct, and that you’re right as rain today. Your recuperation period sounds pretty relaxing and nice, but I’m sure it wasn’t quite as pleasant as it sounds. Stomach stuff is horrendous.

    The snowstorm video was lovely, and l learned many new terms for retching. Your blog is entertaining and educational, as always. Which of course, is why I read it.

    Hope you’re well!

    Thanks Moonbeam. It wasn’t too bad really, except for that initial cold sweat. And I never did hurl, so that’s a plus. Today I was back up to 99.9% and even scored the ‘best’ parking space at work. That never happens.

    Thanks for visiting. Hope you’re well too!

  3. I just keep imagining some sort of Mother Earth figure going “Damn, I really want a Snickers bar!” Hysterical! … even if I am totally ignoring your points about technology.

    I always enjoy your blog, David! I feel less out-of-touch with you than anyone else from CSC because of your bloggy updates. Always a pleasure! And always nice to actually see you, too.

    Thanks Abby, what a nice comment. I wasn’t doing a very good job making the tech point anyway, cause I don’t really get it yet. But the book is due in a week so I better get crackin. It’s nice to hear that this silly blog helps you feel less out of touch, and was really nice to see you too over the holiday break.

  4. I “threw the map” last night – too many cadillac margaritas.

    And I love the video – it’s like a Russian movie with no subtitles.

    Oh, and the blog is snowing. That’s awesome. How’d you make it do that?

    Hope you’re back to 100% soon.

    Hi VAGB. Sorry you threw a map. Did it look like France? That’s how I picture it. It must suck barfing when you’re a crippled.

    Thanks for liking the video, the music is Erik Satie, who wasn’t Russian. Maybe it’s the snow that makes you think of your comrades. WordPress has a “snow” feature you can turn on from Dec. 1 to Jan 4. It’s under Appearance, Extras in the dashboard.

    I declared myself back to 99.9% today, having scored the closest parking space to my office, which almost never happens.

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