My apologies . . .

My wife has pointed out that not only did I miss making a post last Saturday, but that it has been a while since I’ve posted anything other than Saturday posts.  Here is why.

I’m still holding on – waiting for the chance to place the order for the last device I’m willing to try to change the conditions living in this body is forcing me to cope with.  My wife said that we should be able to order it by the end of June – and that means before the end of this month now that the calendar says it is June.  I’ve been bouncing from one storm to the next, and one migraine headache to the next.  Sometimes they overlap, sometimes the migraine fills the gaps between the storms, but it is indeed rare that I don’t have to put up with how my body deals with either.  Sadly – I vaguely remember writing a similar statement during the spring a year ago.  Or was it 2 years ago.  Oh well – the heavy storm cycle won’t last forever, and I’m still hopeful that the migraines can be altered as well.

My sleep, when I get it, doesn’t leave me feeling rested or rejuvenated.  I walk about with a mental fog so thick that even things I know need doing get forgotten.  I have a “brilliant idea” for a blog – and by the time I get to my computer I either forget the idea or how I was going to make the point.  It happens to other things as well – I once boiled a pot of coffee almost dry by forgetting to reduce the burner temperature after it started perking.

Anyhow, before I get up from the computer, I’ll be selecting the post for tomorrow, and getting it scheduled to post.

Problem solved . . .

I wrote a few weeks ago that I had received an email from WordPress saying that I had 90 days to set up the 2-step verification, or I’d loose access to my blog. I opened up the Help FAQ on the 2-step verification, and it was even worse than my worst nightmare. They didn’t just want to send me a text message when I lost my password or something – they were going to send me a NEW text message EVERY TIME I LOG IN!

After weeks of searching for an alternate site, and frantically hand-wringing over how much this world seems to be rejecting participation from people like me (individualists, loners, people who value privacy) – – –

I sent an email to Customer Support (WordPress calls them “Happiness Engineers”) asking if I had any options. Today I got a reply. Here is the text:

Hi there!

A while back an errant email was sent out telling users they had to set up second factor authentication. The email was an error, and you are not required to do so, you won’t lose access to your site.

Please let me know if you have any other questions.

Have a great week 🙂

So, I’m going nowhere, and this blog will continue exactly where it is.

Interesting weekend . . .

Weird.

Well, first off, we had a bitterly cold Canadian air mass move through the area starting Friday afternoon, which dropped the local temperatures to sub-freezing. Naturally, the extra strain caused the central heating unit to finally quit – completely.

We’re fine, though. The fireplace insert we put in last fall took over with no trouble, aside from a bit of extra bundling up to keep the setting lower.

Anyway, Sunday afternoon proved to be quite the adventure. It started just after lunch, when my wife took a bag of trash out to our dumpster. As she opened the lid, she discovered about a dozen (used? not sure) syringes in the bottom of the bin. She came running back in and told me – I went out and confirmed it, and then called the local police. They were amazed that someone would go to the trouble to put them in OUR dumpster – there are several houses around where they’d have been less likely to be seen. See, our dumpster sits direcly under that brand-new super-bright LED security light we just had installed about a week ago, making it a very visible location even in the middle of the night. Anyhow, they cheerfully removed the syringes, and said they would do some extra patrols through the neighborhood to see if they can find who put them there.

As soon as the officer left, I went to the kitchen and put a cup of coffee in the microwave to warm up. I’d just sat down at my computer to read the news when *BANG* – I heard something loud right out front that sounded sort of like a head-on collision. That turned out to be pretty close to describing what did happen. Somone’s vehicle jumped the curb just north of our driveway, and destroyed a traffic sign (on a metal pole!) which landed in the street. By the time I got out there, and I tried to respond pretty quickly, the vehicle that hit the sign was gone, but a pickup had stopped in traffic and was keeping other vehicles from hitting the sign. I had my phone in hand, and called the police again. There wasn’t much they could do about it, aside from filling out an accident report. None of the potential wittnesses waited around for the police, and all I could tell them was that I heard it happen and called right away.

Not working out . . .

Yesterday I posted that I have just under 90 days to do something different with my blogging, because WordPress is changing the rules here and I’ll no longer be able to play on their field.  It wasn’t very long before a good friend pointed out that she couldn’t find a way to subscribe to my original blog the way WordPress is set up to do.

She’s right.  I’ve looked it over, and even talked to the help desk.  Livejournal doesn’t have that capacity at all.  Neither does my preferred alternate idea – Dreamwidth Studios.

Which is leaving me pretty much between a rock and a hard place with WordPress.  They are going to require 2-step verification in less than 3 months, but I do not have a cell phone for them to send text messages to.  My house landline won’t work.  So, in less than 90 days, I loose this blog even if I pay the fee for the URL listing.

I don’t know what to do.

Shutting down . . .

Well, having accomplished what I set out to do with this blog, I think it is time to shut it down.

The reason I’m doing this now it simple:  I had 90 days to renew my domain registration when they informed me that WordPress has decided to force a 2-stage authentication process that requires a form of verification that I literally can’t provide – a cell phone number.  Since I do not have a cell phone, and wouldn’t tie it to my blog even if I did, it is time to quit WordPress.  Besides, I’ve done what I set out to do with  this blog, by laying personal claim to ideas that were hugely influential in the outcome of the 2016 election for the USA.  Everything else was gravy.

So, I’m transferring all of my files and blog posts to my original blog at:  http://mr-spock.livejournal.com/ and asking that if you want to continue to follow my journey of self discovery, you’ll bookmark that page or subscribe to it.  I’ve been blogging on that page since 2004.

Thank you, one and all, for making this page feel like a resounding success.

Thinking about dreaming…

I know – I have way too much time on my hands if I have time to waste thinking about what goes on in our heads while we sleep.  Still, I am in a rather unique position to do so, and motivated by one particular dream that I have so often it has become a welcome friend.  I’ve blogged about this friend before – the “Superman” dream where I fly, have perfect health, and no disability.  Between that and my reading of spiritual self-help guides like Joseph Campbell, I think I’m getting some insight.

First, let me be the first to tell you that there is no “mystical” component to dreams.  The fact of dreaming something does not mean that the event is likely to happen.  It is my considered opinion – at this time, at least – that dreams are ONLY useful for getting to know ourselves better.  What makes us tick, so to speak.

With that in mind, let me tell you what a dream really is.  There are three types of dreams: wishes, fears, and solutions.  Solutions are VERY rare.  Most dreams are our subconscious mind trying to express our deepest fears or wishes in ways that we can relate to.  Take my “Superman” dream – in the first 16 years of my life, I was a fairly normal kid.  I played outside, got sprained ankles and bruises.  I gathered some unhealthy and unwanted negative attention because I did not fit in with my peers – my spiritual leanings were much stronger and more focused than theirs.  I’d venture to guess they still are.  However, just before I turned 18, I had my first real, personal, brush with mortality, in the form of the bone tumor in my left leg.  I was on active duty in the US Army, and progressing through a development regimen that was contracted to culminate in Special Forces training.  On the day of the surgery, I went from being as close to an ideal man as I could hope to be, to being someone who would never again be physically exceptional in any way.  I’ve struggled long and hard with that, and still do.  This is expressed by the frequent dream of being Superman – it is my innermost greatest dream to reclaim what was lost in the surgery suite that day.

Let me share something from Joseph Campbell’s book “The Power of Myth”.  This book is a running transcript of an interview between Bill Moyers and Joseph Campbell, and I wholeheartedly recommend reading it – again if you’ve read it before.  I’m on my 4th reading.

Moyers:  A man once told me that he didn’t remember dreaming until he retired.  Suddenly, having no place to focus his energy, he began to dream, and dream, and dream.  Do you think that we tend to overlook the significance of dreaming in our modern society?

Campbell:  Ever since Freud’s Interpretation of Dreams was published, there has been a recognition of the importance of dreams. But even before that there were dream interpretations.  People had superstitious notions about dreams – for example, “Something is going to happen because I dreamed it is going to happen.”

Moyers:  Why is myth different from a dream?

Campbell: Oh, because a dream is a personal experience of that deep, dark ground that is the support of our conscious lives, and a myth is the society’s dream.  The myth is the public dream and the dream is the private myth.  If your private myth, your dream, happens to coincide with that of the society, you are in good accord with your group.  If it isn’t, you’ve got an adventure in the dark forest ahead of you.

Moyers:  So if my private dreams are in accord with the public mythology, I’m more likely to live healthily in that society.  But if my private dreams are out of step with the public –

Campbell:  — you’ll be in trouble.  If you’re forced to live in that system, you’ll be a neurotic.

Moyers:  But aren’t many visionaries and even leaders close to the edge of neuroticism?

Campbell:  Yes, they are.

Moyers:  How do you explain that?

Campbell:  They’ve moved out of the society that would have protected them, and into the dark forest, into the world of fire, of original experience.  Original experience has not been interpreted for you, and so you’ve to work out your life for yourself.  Either you can take it or you can’t.  You don’t have to go far off the interpreted path to find yourself in very difficult situations.  The courage to face the trials and to bring a whole new body of possibilities into the field of interpreted experience for other people to experience —- that is the hero’s deed.

I’m not trying to say that I’m some sort of hero, just because I’m out of step with mainstream society.  Nor am I saying that I should be a leader.  But, mainstream society is not built out of leaders and heroes – it is built out of sheep.  Followers.  People who prefer conformity to adventure because it is safe.

Incidentally, that is why Hollywood makes hundreds of millions of dollars for mass producing epic adventure stories on film.  It gives the sheep the experience of adventure without the risk or the societal estrangement.  For sheep, it is the perfect escape.

Saturday Posts . . .

vote for trumpI still say that the one thing the United States of America needs to change, from a legal standpoint, is the exemption politicians enjoy from being sued for libel or slander, or even having to worry about getting the facts straight.  This one change, by itself, would completely change the face of American politics.

While I still can . . .

I have a confession to make.  The reason I haven’t been posting much the last few months is that I am having a rough time with this arthritis in my left hip.

Remember a while back when I posted the story about how the bone tumor in my left leg was found?  It was caught VERY early because I am so tuned in to how my body feels that the onset of the tumor was enough to trigger severe pain and keep me from walking on the leg.

So, imagine being that sensitive, and living with actual problems that have shown up on x-ray and MRI tests for a couple of years.  Ok, those problems wouldn’t normally bother even me so much, but for the last 3 months we’ve had rain or storms in this area every day – except 4.  I’ve counted.  Sometimes they are east of us, as far away as Springfield, Missouri.  Sometimes they are south of us as far as Tulsa, Oklahoma.  Well, you get the idea.  Keep drawing a circle – Broken Arrow, OK, Chanute, KS, Ft. Scott, KS, Nevada, MO.  Any storm that has yellow and red coloring on the Weather.com radar image and is as close as any of those places will cause me enough discomfort that I can’t sleep.

Here is what the VA said about my hip when I (finally!) got the results of an MRI that was done at the beginning of this month:

1. Mild degenerative changes in the left hip joint.  
        
       2. Minimal inflammation involving the proximal vastus lateralis
       and gluteus maximus muscles adjacent to the greater trochanter.  
        
       3. Mild cellulitis in the subcutaneous fat overlying the lateral
       hip.  
        
       4. Subcortical lesion in the posterior left femoral head is
       stable in size back to May 2012 CT with signal characteristics
       suggestive of a small enchondroma. Consider followup MRI in one
       year to insure stability.

See – according to them, even though there are 4 problems going on in the same hip, they are all mild and merit only being monitored.  But, as I said before – my sensitivity is such that these are interfering with my sleep.

And that is my real problem.  I’m down to only sleeping about 1.5 to 3 hours at a time.  Add to that this – I absolutely can’t sleep at night because the heat has been so bad during the day that I am forced to do laundry at night, and only 1 or 2 loads per night.  As I’m writing this, it is just past 0500 (5:00 am) here – and the temperature is 79F degrees with a heat index of 83F.  The sun hasn’t even started to come up yet.

I don’t know how much longer I’m going to be thinking clearly enough to do these blogs, so this is a head’s up.  I’m going to pre-schedule as many Saturday Posts as my WordPress account will let me, and then hope for the best.  But, to keep from sounding like a broken record, I won’t keep updating you all the time about how bad the weather is or how my arthritis feels.