Feb 03 2020

The wonder of a human mind

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 0:24

When I started my new job I joined a few IT official channels, one from Dublin and one from New Zealand. I must confess I cannot keep up with all the produced content, but sometimes there are memes and discussions that attract my attention. On Friday on the Dublin channel the topic of aphantasia kept the members quite occupied. If you do not know what aphantasia is, you might want to read this entry. It is exactly what you think it is, the lack of fantasy. Reading Blake Ross’ entry I realized I have no idea what it means to lack fantasy. He says in that entry he cannot see pictures in his mind, and this baffles me, because pictures and movies is all I see. I cannot imagine how it is not to do so. Let me tell you how my brain works.

I think I owe my imagination to my mom. I do not remember my dad spending too much time with me, but my mom is the one that taught me how to read to keep me busy and to allow her time to read. And because I was a child and it was difficult for me to just read without the reality of the events and characters I read about, I started being creative. Really creative.

When I read a book, I make up a movie in my mind. I’ve been doing this since my mother taught me to read when I was four. Back then, in all my fairy tales, I was always the central character, people I did not like were the villains, and friends and family, naturally were the friends and family of the character. As I grew older I started getting very creative with my movies. I’ve “seen” the whole Game of Thrones movie after the first season, because I read the books. That first season did help me put faces to most of the characters though. The same happened with Hunger Games and Divergent.

50 Shades of Grey, well… I did that from scratch, because the movie was not out yet. The main female character looked a lot like Jessica Alba and the male character looked a lot like Jonathan Brandis, an older version of him, anyway.

Actually, the problem I have is the opposite of the one described by Blake Ross. I slip way too easy into fantasyland. I make too much use of it. I have trouble sometimes staying in the present and seeing what is in front of me because my mind just wanders off and creates its own things. My past is a dramatised version influenced by a few tragic events. It might sound weird, but sometimes I have doubts about what I remember and what really happened.

And when it comes to dreams… I dream in colour and I dream intricate scenarios, sometimes spanning over decades. Sometimes my dreams involve scenarios so real I wake up in the morning and have difficulties discerning between a dream and a real event. I dreamed I enrolled on another master class after thinking about it for a while in real life. Only in my dream, my job got a little strenuous and I kept skipping classes. So I woke up terrified that I would fail my exams.

When it comes to romantic relationships, being a fantasist is pain in the ass. It’s bad. It’s so bad I stopped dating and I am doing my best to stay away from persons I am attracted to. Because the persons I am attracted to are just a seed for my out-of-control imagination. When I am attracted to somebody, I fall in love with an idealized version of them. Every interaction is perceived through a distorted lens, that amplifies everything. There are so many scenarios I go through, how should I act, where I could meet them accidentally, how our interactions would go, what I could say to flatter them and deepen their affection. Sometimes when I interact with somebody, if the universe is in my favour, everything goes according to one of the scripts I already reviewed. Usually the interactions leaves them feel great about themselves, but for me… it’s just not as magical. I am just happy that it went as planned.

Example: I once told a guy I had a one night stand with that he had an Adonis body. This left him thinking about that night for over two years. He was a beautiful creature, I give him that and my metaphor was not a lie, but he did not have the effect on me that he thought he did.

Also, my first true love had perfect white skin, and he was tall and slender, with square shoulders, strong arms that have held me in my dreams so many times it still feels real.

The problem with loving an idealized version of somebody, is that they will probably never raise up to that ideal standard. And when they make mistakes and disappoint, they taint that image so much it’s … heartbreaking.

My heart was broken so many times and I come to the realization that they did not break it. My own fantasy and expectation for them to meet it did. I know now I did it to myself. They were just human and so different from that polished, sanctified version of them I fell in love with.

When I was younger I used to get lost in my reveries in the middle of classes. As an adult I’ve gotten better of controlling them. They do not affect my work and thank the universe they do not hinder my driving. :)

What is the conclusion of all this? Well, it seems I am very creative and I have a vivid imagination. One day I might have the time to start writing novels, and the world will be richer because of it.

Stay safe, stay happy!


Feb 02 2020

January Beer

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 22:57

It has been a month since the beer button was added to this site. And the harvest is upon us.

Thank you for the beer, Juan!

Jan 20 2020

The bad one

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 12:15

As a social animal I am programmed to be longing and actively looking for companionship. But at the same time it angers me that it is frowned upon being totally inert and doing whatever the hell you want with your life without involving another.

As a bonus I’m in my late thirty’s which makes dating terrifying, because I know to much. I know about the billion ways in which relationships can go wrong. Also I am not worried only about me getting hurt, but I am also worried about hurting someone, because I do not want to feel guilty about it. Because felling guilty, feeling ashamed of the consequences of my actions keeps me up at night. And I need my sleep to keep functioning normally in this society.

I “fell in love”-or-whatever-that-means the previous year and it was like getting out in front of my house to pick up a package and having a piano dropped on me. Yes. Just like in a cartoon, but the pain was real.

I think I “fell in love” or “got infatuated” or just had a crush, no idea how to name it in 2016. It felt as falling in the shower. Here you are being comfortable, in a cozy familiar place and then bam, you are down on the floor in an uncomfortable position and some things sorta hurt. I felt like I was losing control of my life, making decisions that I wouldn’t have done under normal circumstances. Like now, then I was writing one of my technical books. I lost entire nights chatting with him on facebook messenger, going on late night drives and I’ve even designed the itinerary of my US vacation so I could see him. And I did not mind doing all that, but you know what hurt the most? He wasn’t making the same effort for me. At some point, after other sleepless nights asking myself where was that going, the rational part of me won and I stopped making decisions as to favour my relationship with him. Because he obviously wasn’t doing it. It takes two knowledgeable and in sync partners to tango. We were none of those things.

I was wondering whether some people simply were meant to be completely alone, to be actual islands unto themselves.

Most look for the partner that completes them, we even have a legend about people being wonderful creatures with 2 heads, 4 arms and legs and how they were split in two by an evil envious god and now they spend their life looking for their half.

But I do not consider myself a half-person; actually this idea terrifies me. Because if I’m missing something, I’ll be using another person to get what I need. And what if I cannot offer them what they need? I do not want to be the bad one. The one that took advantage of the feelings of another person. I do not want the guilt that comes it it. Because guilt leads to insomnia. Insomnia leads to bad decision making.

Stay safe, stay happy!

Jan 16 2020

Time for atonement

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 0:45

Although I am proud of myself for finally being able to keep my assumptions to my self, this doesn’t apply to the internet. Or at least not to this blog. I still have to learn when to wait and digest things before posting a reply to a comment.

On this blog I am the author. I speak to my readers and I use the second tense. When I read my own posts my perspective is that of the author. And because I am the author and those are my opinions I don’t feel offended by them. How could I be, I am subjective right?

When reading the comments my perspective changes. I am the reader and my comments are directed to me.

Just look at this exchange:

This is a series of comments at my previous entry. It took me more than twenty four hours to realize that my reader Cip indeed did not meant what I thought he did. Because his perspective was that of an author too. My perspective was that of the reader of his comment and I felt like the target of that “you”.  And because of my own frustration of not having enough time to read as much as I wish, I felt attacked and reacted like that.

Please notice my reply full of malice. I am fully ashamed of that reply, but I will leave it there as a reminder to do better. So dear Cip, I am truly sorry for snapping at you.

I’ve always believed that we view the world the way we are, not the way it is. And on a smaller scale, most times, we treat people the way we are, not the way they are. And yesterday I’ve been an asshole. But there is something that is important in my comment.

You shouldn’t give a fuck about people assumptions. Thier assumptions are rooted into who they are, not into who you are. Assumptions are conclusions drawn with a lot of missing context. So do not let them affect you too much.

Stay safe, stay happy!

Jan 14 2020

On being able to shut up

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 23:47

Depending on how we are raised, some of us are talkers, some of us are taciturn, some seem to ability to recognize perfectly the moment when they should talk, or they should shut up.

I’ve struggled all my life with my  inability to shut up. I’m not even sure how I became like this. Maybe I was thirsty for attention, maybe I just hated that people kept think and lied around me all the time when I was a kid during the communist time and my mother and father never bother to explain to me why. They just told me to shut up and threaten to bet the shit out of me if I didn’t. So I guess never keeping things to myself was an act of rebellion.

The most difficult part for me was when I started to be interested in people romantically. Because when it is not reciprocated, the normal outcome is to shut up and move on. That was not me, and being motivated by all romantic movies and books I read about love, it’s better to be sorry for what you said, than for you did not said, right?  WRONG.

A while ago I made an assumption about somebody. I was so convinced I was right and so enraged and almost blew up and trashed that person. But for some reasons I kept my mouth shut. And recently, through some turn of events, my assumption was proven wrong. I don’t think I’ve even been so relieved and happy about keeping my mouth shut and keeping my assumptions to myself.

There are moment when we must react, we must say something, spat out mean things trying to defend ourselves. But words hurt too, and they have long term consequences. You have no idea how happy I am for finally being slapped in the face for the shit my brains comes up with. And I am so happy that I was bitch-slapped and the fucked up assumption and the bitch-slap are only mine to know and to learn from.

So, welcome to 2020, the year when I’ve started being able to keep my mouth shut. You have no idea for how long I’ve tried to become this person, and how many times I’ve failed. This is good start of the year for me. I wish the same for you.

Stay safe, stay happy!

Jan 10 2020

On being environmentally friendly

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 0:35

I mean, if you really want to be environmentally friendly this is the secret: limit your consumption. Because if you consume, somebody will see a way to make money out of it and they will produce. And to produce what you need, they will consume in turn from this environment, sometimes cutting corners, polluting and who knows what else.

For years in Romania I’ve listened about jokes about Scottish people being stingy, but after moving here I’ve realized that we were so wrong about this people. Scottish people are not stingy, they are efficient. If something can be repaired, they repair it. If something can be reused, they do so. They donate things when they no longer need them and most times are still in the best shape and you can buy them at reduced prices in second-hand shops that donate a high percent of their profits to charities. The Scottish people are very environmentally friendly. Well, most of them anyway.

I’m not bragging. I am not the best when it comes to being environmentally friendly. I eat meat usually once a month. I am doing intermittent fasting so I’m down to two meals per day. It would be nice to get to one meal per day, but … force of habit. I changed my car because I had to in the past, but the one that I have now, I will take care of it and I will give it up only if they outlaw this type of  car. I stopped buying clothes and shoes. I mean, it’s not like I need more clothes, or shoes. I am trying to keep my carbon footprint as small as possible by keeping my consumption as low as I can.

And another thing, you really want to save the planet? Stop multiplying. Seriously, one kid per family is enough. And some of us shouldn’t have kids anyway. Just ask your psychologists how many of us are actually able to take care and guide a small human to become a functional adult.  You would be surprised by the answer.  This planet is dying because we are eating it like termites. Just have one kid and raise him or her well. I admire the adults that have managed to afford to make more than one and if all of them get to be proper adults, kudos to them. But unless you know what you are doing and you have that village to help you raise them right, just settle to one if you want to save the planet.

But these are my not so humble opinions. And who knows what the future holds? I might come back and read this in two or three years while my beautiful twins sleep next to me and I might laugh of the silly human I was now. But following the rule of the universe, where nothing is lost because everything transforms. If you want to slow down the transformation, reduce your consumption and reduce the production of consumers. :P

Stay safe, stay happy!

Jan 08 2020

The disaster question

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 23:52

I’ve been bombarded  with news from the Australia fire  just like all of you. I had no intention to write about it because this is atragedy of a level that I cannot even begin to comprehend. Humans, being humans, they tried to place blame. Climate change is the main cause. Politicians that pretend it doesn’t exists and keep facilitating the burning of fossil fuels were blamed. Politicians that tried to prevent climate change and promotes laws that protected national parks from human intereference were blamed as well. But putting blame on somebody does not put out that fire.

What is happening now in Australia is terrifying also because we are helpless to stop it. Somebody working as a fireman can tell you how difficult is to put out small fires in the city, where water is accessible easily from hidrants around the neighbrohood. Imagine a fire in the wild, where there are no hidrants and no access routes. A lot of humans are suffering and will continue to suffer because of that fire, but the most unfortune victims of this fire are the animals. Poor things had no saying in the laws of humans that lead to this tragedy. They do not know why it is happening or the direction that is safe to run from it. Call me cold hearted, I think humans on some level did this to themselves, but those poor animals are collateral damage.

Since those fires were not started directly from a human hand, we can think of them as a natural disaster. And if you are wondering how prepared we are for a natural disaster… well, we aren’t. Because we got comfy, we got lazy. Most of us live comfortable lives and have no training for dealing with a natural disaster of any kind.

Let’s do a small imagination exercise: what would happen to your life if electricity would just stop in your city? You do not know for how long. It just stops and you have no way of finding out how long it will be gone for, because there is no way to read the news and there is nobody to produce the news.

Here’s my answer: It’s winter now in Scotland, so the first thing that would happen to me … my ass would freeze, because my house is only kept warm by an electric boiler. I’d lose my job, because without electricity there’s no computers. I would be unable to buy food, because cards cannot be read without electricity or internet. And I don’t usually keep much cash in the house or in my wallet. Because I imagine the Edinburgh airport needs electricity too(sic!), there would be no plane landing or departing from Edinburgh. So I’d be stuck here, away from friends and family without any hope of ever seeing or talking to them again. But also, knowing myself, if things don’t get sorted in a week, probably I’d get my most valuable things in a backpack, take my cat on my shoulder and walk all the way home.

What would you do?