New Favorite Youtube Channel

I really did not have time to waste watching an hour and a half of these videos.

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Keep your nose out of where it doesn’t belong

I’m looking at YOU NaNoWriMo.

What we stand for, what we stand against.

As a creative writing nonprofit, we’re not a political organization. We don’t endorse candidates or support any particular party. In an ideal world, we would focus only on empowering people to write.

Yet we find ourselves in a time where people’s ability to tell their stories—and even to safely exist—is at stake.

NaNoWriMo strives to be a gateway and sanctuary for people’s voices. Our guiding belief is that every person’s story matters, and we celebrate the inclusion of all religions, races, genders, sexualities, and countries of origin. We help people find a safe space to be who they are—creators, storytellers, and world changers.

Because of this core organizational value, we join the many voices standing against the presidential executive order that bans refugees and people from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States.

For over 15 years, we’ve had the privilege of writing alongside a community from over 200 countries, including Iran, Iraq, Libya, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. We don’t build walls. We strive to dissolve borders through stories, the vital human narratives that expand our worlds.

So while we are not a political organization, we feel moved to take action.
In response to the executive order, as well as any future government efforts that threaten people’s basic freedoms, we will:

  • Celebrate creativity over apathy, diversity over fear, and productivity over despair.
  • Welcome all stories and continue to make NaNoWriMo a safe space for all writers.
  • Advocate for the transformative power of storytelling to connect people and build a better world.

If you have concrete ideas for how we can work toward these goals (or if you have feedback about anything in this message), please share your thoughts.

Thank you for being part of NaNoWriMo. We are all individuals of different beliefs and backgrounds, but we come together through a shared passion. We pledge to remember that, and to look to our community as a model and inspiration, as we get to the work ahead.
With gratitude and optimism,
Grant Faulkner
Executive Director

Welp, there goes any chance I’ll ever do NaNoWriMo again.  “While we’re not a political organization, we’re going to be blatantly political.”  NaNoWriMo is a way for writers to get together and have fun.  If you’ve inserted politics into this, then you’ve destroyed the purpose.  I can tell from the drivel about “diversity” and “safe spaces” that the thing about “different beliefs” is just crap.  You don’t want anyone involved who might make others feel “unsafe.” You don’t want anyone who isn’t an SJW bootlicking liberal.  So screw you, NaNoWriMo, I don’t need you to be able to write.

This house is haunted

Either that or someone is messing with me.

I couldn’t find the HDMI cable to use with my Raspberry Pi.  It was just gone.  Swiped one of Isambard’s (an extra he wasn’t using) and I put that back before he got home from work anyway.

The next day I trip over the missing cable which is lying in the middle of the floor in my room.  I did not mention losing it to either roommate.  It wasn’t near something it could have fallen off of.  How the hell did it get there?

It’s all over but we can skip the crying

I thought that I was going to escape the election without losing any friends.  Alas, it was not to be.  Doubly sad since I only have (had) two friends.

I made a terrible mistake.  For various reason you need not be bored with, I didn’t talk to Bob much during 2016 and not all about politics.  After the election, however, I saw him posting on social media that he was “upset” about Trump winning.  Well, that doesn’t sound right, I thought, Bob wouldn’t vote for Hillary.  So I asked him why.

By the end of the conversation he was yelling at me.  Bob voted third party since Trump is a horrible evil monster.  Almost every argument he gave against Trump was ad hominem and the more I objected, the angrier he got.

I’m never going to talk to him again.

That sounds petty but the issue isn’t that I voted for Trump and he didn’t.  My other friend didn’t vote for Trump either.  We talked about it.  Nobody yelled about anything.  The issue isn’t Trump.  The issue isn’t disagreeing about something.  The issue is that Bob threw a fit when I responded to his arguments.  The issue is that he started shouting when the conversation didn’t go his way.  Trump isn’t the cause of lost friendship but it’s more that he acted as the impetus to show that there wasn’t a friendship left.  My relationship with Bob had been deteriorating for years; I simply didn’t want to admit it.

I thought that my friends were more logical than emotional, but hindsight being 20/20, it’s clear now that Bob’s overreactions on certain subjects should have been a give away.  The discussions I’d had with him on the subject of politics and religion clearly had been the sort that didn’t touch him personally so that he could look at it more objectively.  Something about Trump triggered him–what I’ll never know.

In a way this came at an opportune time.  The friendship was dead.  I was in denial on this count.  Bob had been my friend for more than ten years; he was my friend during a very trying time.  I would expect some serious amount of pain from realizing the end has come but it was so gradual, slipping away by years instead of by days or weeks, that when there was no denying it any longer, I feel nothing.  It’s better to be rid of deadweight than to cling onto something simply because of an historical emotion attachment.

2016 Reading List

Fiction
Life, Universe, and Everything — Douglas Adams
Ordinary Jack — Helen Cresswell
The Zero Stone — Andre Norton
Warbound — Larry Correia
The Ocean at the End of the Lane — Neil Gaiman
Pines — Blake Crouch
Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians — Brandon Sanderson
The Fellowship of the Ring — JRR Tolkien
Please Look After Mom — Shin Kyung-Sook
Alas, Babylon — Pat Frank
All She was Worth — Miyuke Miyabe
The Tattoo Murder Case — Akimitsu Takagi
Wrong Side of Hell — Sonya Bateman
The Doorbell Rang — Rex Stout
A Wild Sheep Chase — Haruki Murakami
Rebecca — Daphne du Maurier

Nonfiction
Eugenics and Other Evils — G. K. Chesterton
Compost Everything — David the Good
A Prisoner of the Khaleef: Twelve Years Captivity at Omdurman — Charles Neufelf
The Return of the Great Depression — Vox Day
The Story of the Malakand Field Force — Winston Churchill
Something Terrible Has Happened — Peter Van Slingerland

I had the goal of reading 24 novels in 2016 and clearly didn’t come close.  Last semester was a disaster on so many levels.  I read one book in September and one in December and nothing in between.  I did read more nonfiction than the prior year though.

Out of 16 novels, 11 were ones I’d never read before and of those only two were from authors whom I had read something else of theirs before.  I’m usually really bad about refusing to try new authors.  (Why waste time reading stuff that’s likely to be crap?)  I went on kind of an Asian binge which was very interesting because I’d only ever read one Asian novel before.

All nonfiction books were ones I’d never read before. Only two authors were not new to me (Chesterton, Vox).

Novels were kind of mixed for enjoyment but nonfiction was uniformly great.  David the Good is undoubtedly the best in that regard though because who on earth would ever expect a book on compost to be funny?  (Plus after you read it, you can shout “compost it!” every time someone tries to throw something away.)

As for 2017: goal is 24 novels again.  I can’t decide when it comes to nonfiction if I want to try to become an expert on communism in America or on the British Empire.  Maybe both.