Register Wednesday | June 19 | 2019

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A list of things I learned.

Some things I learned in 2004:

1. Marriage is complicated.
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2. If pursuing your dream means working insane hours to just nudge over the poverty line, you'd probably better roll over and start dreaming something else. Business school, maybe.
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3. There is no leader so stupid, foul and corrupt that he cannot be re-elected.
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4. The internet ain't what it used to be. Why, I remember, back in the day, when you could post whatever you wanted in a blog, secure in the knowledge that your friends, family, colleagues, and potential future employers could largely not be bothered to read it. A blog, back in say '97 before they were called blogs, was somewhere between a sketchpad and a confessional. Doot-dee-doot-dee-doo, you could go in your blog; blah, blah, blah. And even if your confessional was miked, even if your blahs were broadcast on speakers throughout the town square, it hardly mattered, because there were maybe three people out there in the square, or a dozen, or, say, fifty at most, and they were mostly geeks like you and pretty sympathetic, and it was kind of salutary, a very low-stakes form of publishing where you could be an ass or funny or boring or overwrought...it was like a semi-public place to mess around, a studio where you could post your rough drafts for the throwaway amusement of a few intimates and, at most, a handful of bored, disinterested strangers.

Whereas now...NOW, writing a blog is more like standing, blindfolded, on a soapbox in the middle of a huge conference hall swarming with EVERYBODY IN THE WORLD, and they're ALL ANGRY. Okay, no, they're not all angry. But you don't know if they are or not. The thing is, you can't just blather, you can't risk saying stupid shit, because suddenly people care. The internet is no longer your pants-optional rec-room; it's now a classy lounge with a twenty-dollar minimum and a no-sneakers rule. Like what happened to College Street in the late nineties.

This isn't necessarily bad, I guess. It's just that it's a totally different medium - it's more like journalism than cut'n'paste, and the conventions are more rigid - I mean, there *are* conventions. And I guess that one of the good things about this new culture is that there are more people involved, and they are more engaged, so you can have lengthy, heated discussions, and that's actually a pretty cool development.
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5. Winter in Winnipeg isn't as bad as everybody says. It's cold, but very sunny; it's got nothing on Quebec City, which is, without question, hell frozen over.
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6. I don't think I want to live past ninety-eight (my grandmother has, which is part of the reason I learned about winter in Winnipeg). Unless some of my friends live that long too, and they find some way in the next sixty-odd years to make old age easier on your body.
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7. I'm not sure I'm capable of adapting to this new internet, but then again, maybe I should try to finish what I've started. Then again, I don't have a lot of time to write, or much to say, really. Then again, maybe the point isn't so much to have Something to Say as just to provide another peephole into the hive-mind, and another little structure for people to fill in with their own ideas. And also, figuring out different ways of using a new medium is always kind of fun.
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8. I've started wearing t-shirts supplemented by leg-warmers on my arms. Is this a terrible idea, or is it (in Kristin's phrase) fashion evangelism?
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9. I haven't mentioned the tsunami because I don't know what to say. But if anyone else wants to talk about it, feel free.
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