I guess I should start this with a health and doings report, like that Elizabethan woman’s diary. I bought it (It’s something something, the diary of an Elizabethan gentlewoman) because I was working the Shakespeare times, and I wanted a sense for how people lived day to day. In a less individualistic time there are very few autobiographies and those might not be representative. So I bought this book. And then I read half of it in disbelief and skimmed the rest.
I can’t remember who the woman was. (I have different “tapes” for the different time periods and universes I work in. (DVDs I should say and even that outdated, but I think of them as tapes, which shows my age.) When I’m not working in them, I remember nothing, except fuzzy details. Before I dive back in, I do a skim and reacquaint myself, and then I have names, dates, details at my fingertips. Part of what disturbed me, back when the thyroid was very bad is that the skim wouldn’t stick. Never mind, that’s getting better, though not back to normal.) Anyway, whoever the woman is, she lost something like two husbands and three sons to treason, was in danger herself, but most of her diary is the same entry “Prayed, wrought.”
Most of my life is about the same, except I’m not so good about praying.
Anyway, the health — after that extended preamble — and this itself is a preamble to my real point, but since this is a blog and not an editorial, I sort of assume you mugs want to know. Because you’re family.
I said when I fell it was just my body being my body and I was vaguely annoyed at being dragged to emergency. I was right. Yes, there were several anomalies caught in the hours right after the sincope, (sp?) but it didn’t last. Everything smoothed out, and when I went to my pcp on Wednesday for a follow up and to book the MRI everything was text book. I now have an appointment with the cardiologist for the week before Christmas, which rather baffles me, since the conclusion of every exam done is that my heart is perhaps too normal.
Then again, this is not my first rodeo. When I said “this is just my body, being my body” I as talking from a deep experience of something weird happening and then going to doctors’ offices to be told “you’ll never die from this.” All sorts of specialists, from heart to blood have told me “Well, we don’t know what happened, but your xyz is so normal/on the good end of the curve, you’ll never die from this.” Let’s call them appointments to confirm my immortality. I’ll never die from any of these things.
And yet my body throws weird wobblies, before it rights itself. The thing is it rights itself. You have to understand, through my childhood, being born too premature and then catching everything, and with the auto-immune ever present (I mentioned to my husband that I wonder if I would be the same person if my eczema throughout all of my childhood didn’t present on the face (eyelids, and around the mouth. Also my neck.) I was a not-ugly child and I naturally like people, but having them recoil from you as if you were a horror-show freak (which is what I looked like) pushed me to both introversion and suspicion of others) anyway — no one could have predicted I would live. And no one fully understands how. So “It’s just my body being my body” will have to cover a lot of this.
I’m now waiting on results from the MRI. The good news is I have a brain, which you guys will laugh at, but the thing is, given the early birth, several episodes of low blood ox because asthma and other stuff, and at least to major concussions mean I thought my brain as a shriveled little thing the size of a walnut. BUT we have to wait to know more. Of course I hope the delay means it’s nothing much, but that didn’t apply to the growth in my uterus, the biopsy also done around this time. It’s just Christmas being Christmas and people being on vacation. So. We wait. But we really don’t expect anything earth-shattering. This is just one of those things. Partly they feel given the horror that is my auto-immune (Though between the thyroid and the prednisone — which damn it made me gain weight I can’t afford to gain — This is the first time my arms are sore-free in… 15 years?) they want to check for stuff like MS, which I have no symptoms of.
Meanwhile I have new glasses and this was the first time, and I mean FIRST including the first pair of glasses I had, that I put them on and went “Oh,” in sheer relief. That double vision up and down which I was not conscious of, until the exams forced me to notice it, must really have been wearing. I felt like my eye muscles unclenched for the first time in probably a year. The upshot is I can see the screen, which had become a matter of guesswork, and I don’t feel exhausted after writing for an hour. So that’s the good news.
After this extended prologue, let’s get into “emergent.”
This morning I was thinking how, except for minor details, my brother and I divided our genetic inheritance according to the two families we “come from.” Alvarim takes after mom’s family and has heart trouble hyper tension and the other physical issues of the family, including early baldness. Mom’s family has other stuff like paranoia and epilepsy, and bi-polar. (He might or might not have the last — treated — as mom does. We don’t delve deeply on that stuff on the phone.) And I take after dad’s side. I’m darker too, as they are, (following the idea that Marques comes from a word meaning Moor, though I doubt they actually were. The genealogical poking I’ve done points at Sephardic Jews. Of course, the appearance is much the same.) And I have low blood pressure, low heart rate, a tendency to hypotension, and stomach trouble, and the endemic depression of that family line.
The exception seems to be the way our minds work. My brother is smarter than I, and certainly conventionally smarter than I. He had an eidetic memory once, when mine was only ever “near eidetic” and he could muster an understanding of fields I couldn’t attempt. OTOH my brain moves by “erratic brilliance” like mom’s side. He’s way smarter than I, but he’s predictable. I’m not. I will be dumb as rocks until suddenly a blinding insight hits, and then I will outpace experts in some field I’ve just been poking at.
It’s not quantifiable or predictable, which makes it difficult for employers. It is however okay for someone who works for herself in a pseudo-artistic field. And sometimes it serves me very well by wielding up something a regular brain could not have come up with in years of patient and sane plodding.
I was thinking of this this morning, and from my erratic mind I jumped to the culture and what is happening in the world.
I follow Richard Fernandez on facebook. If I never did anything else on facebook, that would be worth it. He is not just an enormously smart man, but one whose head makes sense to me. There are people I can tell are very smart, and even right, but my mind can’t bend the way theirs does, and I have to get to the same place by different routes. He’s not one of those. He will think of things I never thought of, and then I read it and go “Oh, I should have seen.”
Lately he’s been on a …. not a tear, a mental pathway about black swans and the meaning of what is going on in the world right now, and whether it means a rejection of the progressive project.
I think it does, though not consciously. People haven’t thought things through yet. They just know what they know, and what their gut tells them is that all this stuff that’s been pushed on us from above is wrong. Just wrong. IOW the pendulum swings and having swung…
It remains to be seen whether they throw the baby out with the bathwater, or if they take bathwater and baby and make something so new, so different that none of us thought about it before. I’m starting to get a feeling that’s it.
Part of what Richard has been saying is that you can’t predict “emergent.” The black swan will fly suddenly, when you least expect it.
You can predict emergent even less if you’ve blinded yourself by taking over news and replacing real reporting with “narrative.” You’re not getting what you need to to predict what is happening.
Thing is, none of us are, because you need to read the western press by ignoring the type and reading the lacunae between the lines to get even a sense of what is really there. In a way the reporters, taught in schools pushing Marxist theory, aren’t even SEEING what’s really there. They never remove the narrative glasses to see the world or attempt to see the world at it is.
And yet, Marx is dead. Marx was always a cult, and cults only withstand so many rounds of disconfirmation before they fall apart (read When Prophecy Fails.) Though on the way there, the proselytizing fervor becomes greater, as we saw after the fall of the USSR.
And yet, Marx is still dead. And we as a culture (which means much longer than individuals) will deal with it over the next few decades maybe even to the end of this century and past the end of my life (immortal or not, I’m fairly sure I don’t last anohter 80 years.)
What emerges next we don’t know, and our information organs having been corrupted by Marxism, can’t help. All we can do is work towards a better future.
Which brings me to a comment on one of Richard’s FB posts in which a man, I presume well intentioned, wailed that we need to figure out what we’re going to do when automation replaces 90% of the jobs.
I gave a snippy reply, because I’m still me, and you guys know my opinion (if not look back through posts. Yes, I probably should label them, but if you use the search string “With folded hands” you’ll get hits.) I don’t think automation can or will replace 90% of the jobs AS WE KNOW THEM NOW. Sorry, left, you can’t blame the unemployment on automation. It didn’t advance that much in 8 years.
But beyond that, automation can’t replace 90% — or really much — of the jobs as we will know them, as they EMERGE in the new world.
One of the things that never ceases to amaze me about the left is what I’d call “Sh*t sentimentality” and a crazy desire for the past. Growing up, they made me read jobs about how bad some jobs were: cleaning lady, assembly line, miner, server. BUT now they’re wailing that those jobs will vanish.
There are two keys to this: first, they are truly contemptuous of their fellow men. The modern leftist is not a worker, nor a man of the people, he is an intellectual, someone who did very well in the indoctrination factories we call schools. This encourages him to think anyone who doesn’t think like him is stupid, but more importantly, it encourages him to think anyone who doesn’t do well and mind-and-pen tasks is stupid. I know. I would have succumbed to that temptation if I hadn’t grown up in a village, where there weren’t enough people to insulate me from contact with people in manual professions who, sure, thought I was nuts reading as much as I did, but who could think faster and better than I in non-intellectual/abstract subjects.
And the second is that the left, thinking they’re smarter, think they have an obligation to “look after” the less intellectually fortunate. Which is why they are all bent out of shape about these sh*t jobs disappearing. I mean, yeah, they suck, but how can the left/bureaucrats come up with new jobs to replace the lost ones? How will they look after the unemployed? And how can we not care that technology is killing jobs???? How can we not want to beef up the welfare state to look after these poor people too stupid to do anything else? We’re monsters, I tell you, monsters.
Their anguish is real, even if truly bizarre. It is a result of their personality type and their education, and it would be unkind to laugh. You also have to have a heart of stone not to laugh like an hyena.
The thing is the government/bureaucrats/intellectuals have never created jobs. Humans are clever apes, even those who aren’t into juggling abstract concepts (some are cleverer than those who do juggle abstract concepts. You can get lost in the pretty pictures in your head.) We’ve survived changing environments before, even environments WE changed. We survived the discovery of fire, we’ve survived metal weapons (will no one think of the plight of the flint chippers? They didn’t even have an all-wise government to tell them what to do next or give them mammoth-meat welfare.) We’ve survived the industrial revolution and the replacement of jobs, wholesale.
My bet is on humans. We’ll continue to survive. We do not need wise bureaucrats to look after 90% of us or hold our hands in the transition. We ask only one thing of those who think they need to invent the future: LET GO. Remove your “caring hands” from the throat of the future. You’re killing it. Leave it alone and it will emerge, on its own.
And it might very well be better than anything you can imagine. Sure, it can be worse too, though by and large, human civilization can be defined as “things get better for the common man” despite some truly horrible interludes.
Let go. Things might come out better or worse. The only thing I can promise you is that they’ll be weirder than you can imagine. Which is the point.
No one made you the gods of humanity, and now I think about it our antropomorphic gods were continuously surprised by us, too.
Let go your fear, your anxiety, your sense of superiority over the common man. Let people be and do in their own self-interest.
We’ll be all right.