Caveat: Poem #956

the brutalist trees
like dead monumental arms
of recumbent gods

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Caveat: Tree #70

Wow, I found another tree.

picture

[daily log: walking, 4km]

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Caveat: Poem #955

a truck trundles by
along that pothole-pocked road
smashing through the slush

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Caveat: Tree #69

A tree growing.

picture

[daily log: walking, 3km]

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Caveat: not all creativity needs to be bonded by wage

AOC was talking at the SXSW conference. An excerpt:

We should not be haunted by the specter of being automated out of work. We should not feel nervous about the toll booth collector not having to collect tolls anymore. We should be excited by that. But the reason we’re not excited by it is because we live in a society where if you don’t have a job, you are left to die. And that is, at its core, our problem.

[…]
We should be excited about automation, because what it could potentially mean is more time educating ourselves, more time creating art, more time investing in and investigating the sciences, more time focused on invention, more time going to space, more time enjoying the world that we live in. Because not all creativity needs to be bonded by wage.

[…]
Capitalism is based on scarcity. What happens when there is enough for everyone to eat? What happens when there is enough for everyone to be clothed? Then you have to make scarcity artificial. And that is what has happened.- AOC

Then the moderator said: that’s “Full Star Trek Socialism.” AOC just smiled.

The concept of the “post-scarcity society” has been around for a long time. And now we find that AOC is fluent in this thinking – that was not a prepared speech, but rather a response to an audience question. I’m interested.

Posted in Philosophy & Cultural Criticism, Politics, Economics & Current Affairs, Quotable | Leave a comment

Caveat: Poem #954

the sounds of raindrops
stabbing at the pale windows
caressing the trees

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Caveat: Tree #68

Here is a tree.

picture

[daily log: walking, 3km]

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Caveat: Treehouse update

As some of you might know, I have this project going on: I want to build a treehouse. Not a full-scale house by any means, but not a tiny, kid-treehouse either. Just a kind of Arcata pumphouse-style outbuilding, I suppose.

I had originally meant for it to be down by the water. But I lost my confidence in the reliability of the trees near the water – although they are big and fat old-growth trees, they are old and their root-systems are precarious. I felt that putting a treehouse among those trees was likely to be fraught with the risk of one of those trees going down in a storm.

So I chose a spot among the third-growth trees up on the hillside, near the southern property line. Most of these third-growth western hemlocks and sitka spruce are about 8 inches in diameter – that’s enough to support a well-engineered treehouse, in my estimation.

When my brother Andrew was here, I consulted with him, because I know he has actual experience engineering and building treehouses. And he asked me for an update on progress, recently. I decided to post it here because other people might be curious too.

Progress is slow. I’ve cleared the spot where I intend for it go. It’s a rough quadrilateral with three 8-inch trees and one 6-inch tree. The 6-inch tree seems a bit small to support the treehouse, but it’s one corner out of four, and it’s attached to a hefty old stump, so if I rely somewhat on that, structurally, I think it will be OK.

I accepted Andrew’s recommendation to supplement my fat brackets that I bought specially for this project with cables to suspend the corners. So I bought the hardware for that.

I haven’t made much progress mostly because of the weather. Firstly, it’s been sunny and just below freezing, mostly, since Andrew left. That’s actually not good weather for working on this – the hillside has become very slippery, with old snow, repeatedly melted and frozen, turning into sheets of ice. Good old Prince-of-Wales rain would be better – that would make things muddy but manageable. This is a problem on the road, too, and so I’ve also decided to wait on going into town with the trailer to buy the additional lumber I need for this.

So meanwhile, all I do is go up periodically and judge the quality of my path up there, and clear spots of nearby brush.

I’ll hopefully make more effort once Art and I are back from our Australian venture, to start next week. We’ll see.

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Caveat: Poem #953

I set aside my thoughts, just walking.
The alien along the road
appeared and gave me pause, his talking –
his soulless pleadings – like a code
made up of tangled verbs and meanings
from which I got the barest gleanings.
I followed through an open gate,
his gestures seemed to show we’re late,
how could I know, could he be trusted?
In dark and looming halls we roamed,
his pointless words spilled out and foamed.
We stopped beside machines, all rusted.
And he explained what he had planned,
but still I didn’t understand.

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Caveat: Tree #67

This tree wants to fly.

picture

[daily log: walking, 1km]

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Caveat: Messy desk, messy mind…

…I don’t really believe that.

But I figured with a clean, fresh operating system on my computer, I also needed a clean, fresh desk. So I cleaned it. I don’t do that very often, so I’m happy. I got a “two monitor” setup working, too. Actually I never saw the appeal of that (it’s popular with a lot of programmers and gamers), but I thought I’d give it a try.

picture

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Caveat: Poem #952

With parsimony,
the sky brightened an hour late:
I saved some daylight

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Caveat: Tree #66

The sixty-sixth tree.

picture

[daily log: walking, 4km; tromping, 300m]

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Caveat: A linux-flavored bullet

I have bitten the bullet.

I installed Ubuntu Linux on my lemon HP laptop, in hopes that at least some portion of its lemonosity is derived from the Windows 10 operating system.

So far… well, it works, at least the basics. I’m updating my blog from the new operating system.

It will take a while to get it all working smoothly. I’m a bit rusty on the linux desktop, since I haven’t used it since I left my desktop behind in Korea, last July.

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Caveat: Poem #951

some clouds came along
and they set up battlements
on the hills’ ridges

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Caveat: Tree #65

This is a tree.

picture

Arthur said, “didn’t you already take a picture of that tree?”

I said, “No, it was that other tree.”

Actually, I wasn’t sure. Anyway, at least this one’s from a different angle.

[daily log: walking, 4km]

Posted in A Daily Tree, Banalities & Journaling, My Photos | Leave a comment

Caveat: Backend changes

I’ve been a bit anti-social lately – more so than usual. I’m struggling with the feeling that my life is “on hold.”

So I’ve retreated into some computer stuff I probably could have done quite a while ago.

I’ve created a new host-space for my blog-photos, which doesn’t affect the blog’s appearance but which solves a problem that I’ve had since last fall, when I was forced to migrate from my prior blog hosting provider (Typepad) to my own wordpress platform, due to the former’s technical intransigence and poor support.

So all new photos are at my new host-space (also self-hosted on my own server, now). Unfortunately, there is no fast way (that I’ve figured out, yet), to update all the old photos. So that will be a slow migration. There are 1000s of photos on this blog, given its more than 6000 entries. They are about 60-70% on the new host-space, but most of the “URL pointers” still point to the old host-space. So I need a fast find-replace for those URLs. I’m working on that. And for the third or so that are still in limbo on the Typepad version of the blog, it’ll be an even slower slog – they need to be “rescued” from there, hopefully before I’m forced to pay another year’s membership to prevent them from being lost forever. Typepad, being a for-profit business, provides no easy way to get these photos in bulk – you must open each one and save it, one-by-one.

I’m also working on learning (re-learning? did I ever know it?) some basics of Ruby on Rails programming, so that I can move forward on some web platforms I’d been messing with before leaving with Korea, and that have been on hold for the last year or so. I’m trying to get Eclipse IDE to work with the remote server, but it seems very buggy. I need to maybe find a different IDE.


What I’m listening to right now.

Joan Baez, “Silver Dagger.”

Lyrics

Don’t sing love songs, you’ll wake my mother
She’s sleeping here right by my side
And in her right hand a silver dagger
She says that I can’t be your bride

“All men are false”, says my mother
“They’ll tell you wicked, lovin’ lies
The very next evening, they’ll court another
Leave you alone to pine and sigh”

My daddy is a handsome devil
He’s got a chain five miles long
And on every link a heart does dangle
Of another maid he’s loved and wronged

Go court another tender maiden
And hope that she will be your wife
For I’ve been warned, and I’ve decided
To sleep alone all of my life

Posted in Background Noise, Banalities & Journaling, Databases & Computers | Leave a comment

Caveat: Poem #950

When people annoy
I turn to my computer
and program something.

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Caveat: Tree #64

It’s a small cedar.

picture

[daily log: walking, 1km]

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Caveat: Poem #949

Outside my window, western hemlocks
tower and confront the clear air
while stale snow begins to melt.
But in shadows it’s cool;
amid broad blue skies
there are all these
disturbing,
brooding
doubts.

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