Psycho-Babble Social Thread 1045365

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Re: this community

Posted by alexandra_k on August 6, 2013, at 23:18:33

In reply to Re: this community, posted by alexandra_k on August 6, 2013, at 5:20:31

the letter to the ministry was a great idea. things are sorted now. nobody seemed offended by my swearing... they seemed genuinely empathetic... they are going to forward pay / back pay so there is no gap in the transition. i think i might even have a slight increase which will help me get to the library.

everything is going to be okay.

:-)

 

Re: :-) (nm) alexandra_k

Posted by Dr. Bob on August 8, 2013, at 11:22:14

In reply to Re: this community, posted by alexandra_k on August 6, 2013, at 23:18:33

 

Re: :-)

Posted by alexandra_k on August 15, 2013, at 23:34:29

In reply to Re: :-) (nm) alexandra_k, posted by Dr. Bob on August 8, 2013, at 11:22:14

you are still here - right?

i'm not going to idealize you, because i'm not going to devalue you, either.
at least... i'm going to try very hard. sigh.

this idea of 'better or worse' people is hard for me... i'm not entirely sure why. maybe because there are many examples of judgements we have made in the past that we think of as unfair now.

I've been reading Wilson's 'Sociobiology'. 1975. He is talking about ants. I need to read it again... But he talks about how some of the individuals just do move faster and are more productive generally. You can track objective pay-offs. These individuals seem to have a social facilitation effect. The other ants kick up their performance another notch when they are around that ant.

Then of course the idea is that the same thing applies to people.

I"m not sure what it is... But some people seem to have something... An ability to make fine grained discriminations that other cannot? An ability to focus their attention to notice things that others do not? An ability to kick others into gear? Something... Some things...

An exuberance?
An energy?

Apparently it is a view that mental disorder is one of the things that makes us distinctively human. That it is something about the kinds of minds we have that makes us prone to the kinds of disorders we have. This is controversial, I suppose. Especially for those people studying animal (e.g., mouse, rat) models of this or that or the next thing...

Someone... I forget... Reckoned that the thing about gifted individuals was something to do with their emotions. Emotional excitability. It gave them motivation. Drive. Obsession. Enthusiasms. Then you have the 10,000 hours to expertise idea (pop culture, but whatever). Not as sufficient, but as necessary.

But this kind of excitability... Can go horribly wrong, it seems to me.

Reactivity...

Something.

I have no idea what I'm talking about.

I never thought of different anti-depressants targeting different niches (symptoms, I suppose) of depression... I guess I thought there was a flurry of excitement as each new one came out... But the idea that things then settled into some kind of awareness of a niche is new to me... I don't know anything about medication. Or about biochemistry. I don't know. It is a shame, really, but there it is.

Economics gives us objective pay-off structures. That is nice. It is hard to translate pay-off structures to fitness benefits. Or seems that way to me. Problematic...

To be valued most within a group you need to demonstrate committment to the group. You can't be luke warm. Gang members who get 'Mongrel Mob Forever' tattooed across their face and trusted by the gang. Because their fate is bound to the fate of the gang. They have inherited the gangs enemies and without the support of the gang they will surely suffer. They can't defect. They have demonstrated committment.

Choosing to do a PhD in philosophy isn't quite as bad as that... But close. Too... Arrogant? Too... Senior? To begin anything again from the ground up. Too... Specialist for other people to have any idea what the f*ck you can do and what the f*ck you can offer.

And I have no way of telling them. Because every single day... I'm f*ck*ng astounded at how most people seem to have an inability to do things that are EASY for me. And of course the converse is sometimes the case... But it makes communication hard.

I can fix the internet though, of yes I can. It isn't acceptable that it has been dodgey for a month... Down since Sunday. I don't understand how poeple can piss about and do nothing... Spend so much time sorting things out which involves nothing being done... How are people so f*ck*ng effective at wasting time???

YOu do need to go around with an 'I'm cranky and don't piss me off or I'll f*ck*ng snap at you' expression - or people will bog you down and suffocate you in their nothingness. Their idle pratter about... Nothing. You need to show people that things need to move - chop chop or people will revert to their usual state of comatose sluggishness...

Irritability at the world is simply a necessary precondition for anything getting done at all. Most people are... Inert. HOly f*ck*ng crap people.

I...

Need to get out of here...

 

Re: :-)

Posted by alexandra_k on August 15, 2013, at 23:41:26

In reply to Re: :-), posted by alexandra_k on August 15, 2013, at 23:34:29

and then of course i think about my supervisor... and how to his eyes i'm just as lethargic and complacent and dull-witted.

which helps with the appropriate sense of compassion, i think.

i don't know what to say.

 

Re: still here

Posted by Dr. Bob on August 16, 2013, at 2:15:54

In reply to Re: :-), posted by alexandra_k on August 15, 2013, at 23:34:29

> you are still here - right?
>
> i'm not going to idealize you, because i'm not going to devalue you, either.
> at least... i'm going to try very hard. sigh.

I'm still here. But I wasn't here for a few days, so you can't idealize me. But I'm here now, so you can't devalue me, either. :-)

Bob

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on August 16, 2013, at 2:25:40

In reply to Re: still here, posted by Dr. Bob on August 16, 2013, at 2:15:54

sigh.

yes, i suppose you are allowed to walk away sometimes.

as long as you come back.

eventually.

ty.

 

Re: still here alexandra_k

Posted by SLS on August 17, 2013, at 5:07:44

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on August 16, 2013, at 2:25:40

> sigh.
>
> yes, i suppose you are allowed to walk away sometimes.
>
> as long as you come back.
>
> eventually.
>
> ty.

A_K, I would like to express to you the same sentiments. You have added a richness to these forums that cannot be replaced. It is my hope that you don't walk away - except for an occasional sabbatical.


- Scott

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on August 17, 2013, at 21:10:53

In reply to Re: still here alexandra_k, posted by SLS on August 17, 2013, at 5:07:44

> > sigh.
> >
> > yes, i suppose you are allowed to walk away sometimes.
> >
> > as long as you come back.
> >
> > eventually.
> >
> > ty.
>
> A_K, I would like to express to you the same sentiments. You have added a richness to these forums that cannot be replaced. It is my hope that you don't walk away - except for an occasional sabbatical.
>
>
> - Scott

I don't know what to say... Thank you, Scott, that is very kind of you. I am really glad that I've been given the opportunity to get to know you better. You have been around for longer than me, I see. Sometimes I miss out on getting to know people who are known well. Because I hardly ever frequent the meds board, I suppose.

And then...

I suppose I did to my last t what I was afraid he would do to me. Just kind of ambled off... And disappeared. I don't suppose it is fair of me to ask Bob not to do that but keep that option open for myself. I suppose. Hmm. I feel sheepish. But of course I'd still rather he didn't.

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on August 20, 2013, at 18:25:39

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on August 17, 2013, at 21:10:53

https://mediastore.auckland.ac.nz/library/public/2013/Winter-2013-07-23-L1-MargaretABrimble.mp3.low.preview

lecture starts around 8 minutes in.

her enthusiasm is catchy. i am going to have to study science next year, after all, i think. i mean... i'll focus on my thesis for now and whatever will be will be... but i'll make sure i meet application etc deadlines.

i went to one yesterday... it was on hydroponic people. at least, that is how i'm going to think about it. people who had intestinal failure so needed to be fed via iv. a lot of metabolism happens between mouth and bloodstream.... out mouth and gut / gut and bloodstream (nasal feeing). i guess that can be measured by seeing how people respond to iv feedings. and nasal feedings. wow. pretty. f*ck*ng. cool. (sad for them, obviously).

(i have no idea why i'm thinking of them as 'hydroponic'. i guess it is just the notion of precise quantities, whereas actual food (e.g., fruits and veges) have so many unknowns going on with pesticides and seasonal variation in sugars etc).

i think i might have some scientist in me, after all.

apparently the notion of group selection is problematic... goodie.

stuff to be doing...

spending time at uni helps me feel... human. getting excited about hydroponic people or beautiful biomolecules and seeing theorists recognize the excitement... is the most wonderful kind of catchy feeling in the world. it is rare... i didn't realise? forgot? just how rare that was...

life... for me... is about doing what i can to maximise time spent with people who have that similar excitement... who are part of the project of maximising that in the world... hoping people catch more of it...

rather than setting out to prove how smart one is / how stupid others are... or whatever... i don't know.

happy.

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on August 20, 2013, at 20:48:43

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on August 20, 2013, at 18:25:39

it is about the pursuit of excellence.

whatever the activity. i said that to people at the tech i was at in a different part of the country... i said (to the management people) that i didn't understand why it wasn't about the pursuit of excellence. why people weren't being encouraged to be the best x they could be. they said 'not everyone can be the best'. i said - i didn't say that everyone could. but i don't understand why everyone can't be taught to / take up the task of being the best *they can be*.

the best kitchen hand. the best chef. the best mechanic. the best engineer. the best... whatever. it doesn't freaking matter what.

and then: your conscience is clear. and you can pat yourself on the back for doing the best you could. and really, nobody could ask any more of you. you can be proud of youself.

what more is there to life?

figuring out what is preventing you from being the best you can be. and of course figuring out what is preventing you pursuing the aspects that you feel passionately about. or that you used to feel passionately about before other people killed it - or before you (in internalizing those messages from other people) killed it.

i will never get to the olympics... but i take much pleasure from the *pursuit* of perfection in olympic lifting. not just my own performance... but my own performance opens up a beauty in others performances that i wouldn't appreciate if i wasn't on my own path. all of us... as a species... the pursuit of perfection... we can all take part / be a part of that... just by doing our best. not everybody can be the best. being the best is largely determined by factors outside our control, though (so one can't appropriately be praised or blamed for that). one has rather more responsibility for whether one takes up the *pursuit*, however.

what is the meaning of life: engaging in activities that are meaningful. what makes them meaningful? well...

some things are intrinsically valuable (valuable for their own sake). we do have this idea of losing perfectly... and losing badly... losing perfectly is fighting right up until the end and losing because of factors... outside ones own control. photographs of defeat in the olympics (for example) are beautiful when we see the person really striving and giving it their all. there is something beautiful in the striving... when one side has an easy win and opponants gave up.. it spoils the game, rather.

what prevents people from this?

how do we fix it?

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on August 20, 2013, at 21:22:19

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on August 17, 2013, at 21:10:53

> I don't suppose it is fair of me to ask Bob not to do that but keep that option open for myself. I suppose. Hmm. I feel sheepish.

And that is, perhaps, the story of my life. My father did that. Or, at least, that is indeed how I felt about my Father leaving for quite a number of years.

And most of my social relationships... Sort of peter out. I don't tend to keep in touch with people when I don't simply run into them. I thought maybe there was something problematic about my ability to properly hold people in mind when they weren't there or... I don't know what it is. But I know I am really very bad at keeping in touch. And there simply isn't an excuse these days with Skype and email etc.

The people I feel the closest to are the ones who put up with that tendency in me. And when we do meet again we just kind of pick things up how they left off.

But I... Do amble off rather a lot. ANd I opt out of a bunch of in-person interactions, too. Social anxiety... Things seem too hard to me... So I don't do them. Like how people get together and spend all day getting all dressed up for a theme party (for instance) but the only way I can bear to go at all is if people don't give me a hard time for not really thinking about it... Then just showing up. Otherwise... I can't do it at all. Too much... Social pressure? I got a hard time to start with for not making more of an effort to dress up etc... Till I put my foot down on 'quit it -- or I won't come at all'. I just... Can't.

Can't.

I don't know what it is.

I suspect the latter is a different problem.

Thesis is story of my life. I hope it isn't too late.

I think... I feel sad that my future is probably going to be one of me being considered a crazy person on welfare... If all goes well... Mentally disordered so I can't work so on sickness... I...

I cant' survive outside the university.

Philosophy is...

Well... There isn't another home.

That is what it is.

The love of learning for learnings sake.

The opportunity to learn...

Everything.

(in as much as possible within the limited amount of time I have on this earth)

I don't understand people saying that life would cease to have value / meaning if it didn't end. That doesn't make sense to me. People who think they would be bored... Need to get out more. If my life lasted forever... There would be forever + 1 bits of information for me to learn. That equation doesn't make sense - but I'm sure the idea is clear... SOmething about provable things that can't be proven... Something somtehing.

devil is in the details of cousre.

sigh.

I wish there was a lecture like the one I posted... For every field. So I could get a sense of all the fields there are.

Problem is that every research group probably has their own story...

Then my job... Is to use the information they have learned... To attempt to answer some of the big qeustions. The big questions that are thoght to be intractable to science. That can't be directly tested. That involve integrating information from a diverse range of fields / research groups where those people aren't even aware of each others existence...

Before alzheimers or dementia. Preferably.

 

Re: still here SLS

Posted by alexandra_k on August 24, 2013, at 18:19:28

In reply to Re: still here alexandra_k, posted by SLS on August 17, 2013, at 5:07:44

well, where did you go, then?

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on September 4, 2013, at 23:45:04

In reply to Re: still here SLS, posted by alexandra_k on August 24, 2013, at 18:19:28

well... i gave (2 weeks) notice of where i am living. it needed to be done. it is the last of the cutting ties with the whole physiotherapy thing that didn't work out. with the whole... failure to respect (no - f*ck that, failure to *admire and actively encourage and support*) my decision to prioritize study.

i was ambivalent about whether i had done the right thing. but the internet is still down and they are like 'we've let the provider know, we can't do any more about it' - which isn't alright for me. and... there is a 17 and a 19 year old girl across the hall and... they like to chatter and giggle and play their music... and i'm not in the position to be a role model for them right now (i just need my space to do my thing). and the commute into the city costs a lot... and the time taken to travel... and it makes food hard, as well... and then the drain got backed up - i thought it was the storm water. but then the toilets were out of action so, no, more serious problem with the sewerage. which reassured me i'd made the right decision. things did end up getting put right within 2 days... but i honestly didn't know whether that would go the way of the internet and i can't live like that...

haven't heard back from accom about halls yet (my undergrad uni)... i have a couple places here, in the city to look at. insofar as they are a quick walk to uni library they might be feasible even if they are utter dumps. the library here is turning out to be a wonderful place to work. this is the time of year where the students either knuckle down or vanish... i am... getting into the swing of things here... though food is hard... i need to spend significantly more time sorting out shopping and cooking to bring lunch and dinner...

i got f*ck*ng waitlisted for bio-medical science major. which of course means... that i want to do that. for sure. 200 places for the best of the high school science kids is the idea of that... then i think there are around 120 places for medicine, so the odds actually look quite good. except 1/3 of places are reserved for grad entry applicants so looking harder again. and now there is the other undergrad health science pathway so things don't look so good (though apparently not many have come from the latter pathway - i'm guessing because they don't make the grade cut on the 'overlapping 4') we will see... if i don't get a place in that then i have to enroll in a bachelor of health science (demography / social psych). i suppose they will make that decision for me. i might ask them why i got waitlisted since the high school kids haven't even sat their end of year exams yet. how are they planning on comparing my MA and university GPA for philosophy / psychology / education / english with the high school kids physics, chemistry, biology (etc) exam results? it is too early for them to have processed my application, i would have thought (my applications for other majors and other degrees haven't been processed yet). how dare they process me so quickly onto a f*ck*ng waitlist!!!!! what does it mean?

there are quite a lot of self contained studio rooms "just over the fence" (one of the many) from my old uni. lots of spaces as the kids get overwhelmed and drop out... so... i'm not panicking that i have to move... i guess it might be nice to stay here in the city after all (with the library turning out to be so nice)... student advisory here gave me 2 places to check out... otherwise... temporary stay with mother while I find something 'just over the fence' I guess...

either way... life is good. the toilets are working again. thank f*ck*ng god.

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on September 10, 2013, at 21:25:56

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on September 4, 2013, at 23:45:04

so yesterday i made a stew... and instead of thinking that i'd sorted out my food for the next 2 days as i planned... i asked my flatmates if they wanted some (for reals). and then i kind of hung out with them in the living area fiddling with references while they played cards and sung and chatted and stuff...

and it was actually kinda pleasant.

i asked if i could stay, today. and they said i can. and that is good.

i looked into studio apartments a little more and anything i can afford would be a sideways move that would use up all of my grading 'bonus' (i think of it as a bonus because it isn't a regular income and i never know when the next will come or how much it will be).

i think that taking seriously the possibility of moving got me more properly looking into it which made me realize that there are a number of very good things indeed about what i've got going on here.

sure i need to commute into the city... and that costs money... but i have a fast commute compared to most and the noises here are happy noises. not road rage or anger or drunkenness. i need to develop better routines around preparing large amounts of food and taking a couple meals in with me... i'm starting to develop better routines around working in the library space... there can be a social facilitation aspect to it...

it would of course be *more ideal* if i can get into student accommodation in the city next year (since i'll have 8am lectures 4 days a week and won't be finishing till around 5 with labs...) there is something special about being surrounded by students and basically living on campus... but things actually are pretty good here. anywhere else... is only likely to be noisier, truth be told.

i heard back from my undergrad uni and they said they didn't really have anything... i guess... universities know that PhD students in the final stages of writing up are moody and hermited. why would you want one? here... well... they do get some of me. i guess i need to make a bit more of an effort sometimes. like last night. it makes them feel a lot happier (since mostly they simply catch my anxiety, i think). and... i feel a lot happier today, too. i feel a lot happier today, too... why can't i hold onto that and remember it and use it to inspire me to make more of an effort?

i do have a lot of social anxiety... i had forgotten... that is partly why it often doesn't seem worthwhile... and here... no alcohol... it *is* hard. but i suppose it is good for me. and, well, it was what i wanted. to get out of the research silo / ivory tower for a bit and to see how things are with the world. i cry myself to sleep... wake up crying... terrified that i'm going to not get my thesis done... that i'll be stuck on unemployment with no respite because of the whole 'i'm doing my PhD thing'... seeing how the people live who don't have the whole 'i'm doing my PhD thing'... which makes a lot of this... feel... time limited... hence manageable... i'm starting to freak out that i'm going to be stuck here. that there isn't a way up.

i guess that is the point. that is supposed to be kicking in right now. to motivate me to finish.

then i freak out that no matter what i do it is too late for me... even if i finish now nobody will consider funding me in future because i was so late with the work...

but of course a lot of people *are* late with things... my supervisor is trying to hook me up with someone who just finished his book... i think it was due around the time i started my PhD... so... only around 6 years late... it is (of course) a really very good book now, though, however. i... well... i pissed about. i did. because i was sick. but sick = unproductive...

it is a miserable time for most... hang in there... get it done...

 

Re: still here alexandra_k

Posted by Phillipa on September 10, 2013, at 23:01:34

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on September 10, 2013, at 21:25:56

I see progress. Lots of it!!!! Phillipa

 

Re: still here Dr. Bob

Posted by alexandra_k on October 16, 2016, at 23:40:26

In reply to Re: still here, posted by Dr. Bob on August 16, 2013, at 2:15:54


?

please.


> > you are still here - right?
> >
> > i'm not going to idealize you, because i'm not going to devalue you, either.
> > at least... i'm going to try very hard. sigh.
>
> I'm still here. But I wasn't here for a few days, so you can't idealize me. But I'm here now, so you can't devalue me, either. :-)
>
> Bob

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on November 6, 2016, at 0:16:54

In reply to Re: still here Dr. Bob, posted by alexandra_k on October 16, 2016, at 23:40:26

I have to find a new place to live and it's unsettling me, rather. It is good that I have to find a new place, I suppose. I'm not particularly happy here. It was workable. With a part time workload. It would be less workable with a full time workload, though. Being forced into using the kitchen / washing machine during peak hours instead of having more flexibility to use such things during the day while others were occupied with their full time workload.

Having the kitchen just outside of my door. I suppose it is possible I'm imagining it... But I get this feeling sometimes that people are listening out... Trying to make a 'we'. So if they hear me make a noise (close a drawer, or something) then they will make a noise in response. And things are supposed to go on like that... And then they will come bang on my door to ask to borrow some sugar, or whatever...

And the trouble is that I want solitude. Because I'm often doing something and want to keep on with it. Or whatever. Just relaxing. But just relaxing by myself.

I find... I am kinder to myself than most people are to me. I find... I am more sensitive to and responsive to myself than other people are to me. I don't know how other people are supposed to figure out what is best for me, anyway. My experience is that other people are much better than me at knowing what is best for them and trying to convince me that that is what is best for me. So I feel I mostly need to be on guard with other people... Assessing whether their interests really are aligned with my interests... Assessing whether I'm doing them a favor and whether they might have done me favors and the value of those favors with respect to how hard it was for each of us... I feel I'm not particularly able to trust their assessment (divergence of interests, again)... And so when it comes down to it I'd mostly prefer to be alone... So I can relax... Instead of feeling guilty for not looking after other people better...

I thought... I always thought the idea of a studio was the idea of having a place where one could work uninterrupted. So... Writers block or the equivalent... Struggling... Wrestling... And then you get your sh*t together and you get started in on a chunk of work. And you might want to paint for 2 days straight, or whatever. And a studio was a place where you could sleep or not sleep whenever you saw fit. You didn't have flatmates who thought it was okay to play their stereo prior to 10pm... You didn't have flatmates putting their mothers nagging and guilt feelings on to you that it is sleep time... You were free from all the expectations and judgements and rules of other people.

We call rooms in boarding houses 'studios' here.

I need to get my drivers licence and live further out. That is stressing me. Need to get on a bus and head out to the driving school. See what bike they can hire me to teach me to pass the basic skills test. I guess it makes sense to learn on something similar to what you will get... They aren't allowed to loan you automatic for the basic skills test, though. I'm stressed about that... Doing that... How much it will cost...

For a while there I was actually getting a reasonable amount of money each week. I mean, enough to eat well and enjoy coffee and... Actually enough for me to be putting aside a bit each week and thinking that if I saved for a few weeks I could buy this or that... I was starting to feel like a human being. Who could start to replace aspects of my wardrobe etc... And then of course that stopped. I needed to reapply and it wouldn't be backdated, or whatever. And that threw me... And I've managed to revert to poverty mode, again. A whole different mindset. I hope nobody is trying to teach me a lesson because I already know. I suspect people are learning about me here. Assessing me here. Getting to know me here.

I think things will come through for me here... But there is an aspect of 'eventually'. Sometimes I start to feel old. All those years I wasted in Auckland... Being called illiterate by illiterate people... And so on... I'm mostly okay, I suppose. Just having a bad day today in particular. Fireworks last night. Etc.

Seminars here have been good. And have continued now after undergrad classes have stopped. That has been great. That the whole thing hasn't shut down. I've been getting to a lot of seminars that have been publicly advertised... Realising that of course I can go to those. And ask questions. The chair / speaker decide whether they will take your question or not... I think people are starting to get to know me. I'm perhaps not as diplomatic with my questions as I could? should? be... I don't know. They haven't blocked me, at any rate. I think the time they didn't take my question they thought it would lead to a more sustained conversation after... But I wasn't in the mood... Will see whether they take my question in future... Questions are for the speaker not for the person who asks the question...

I hate feeling like I don't have a safe place. I don't feel that I have that here. :( I mean I'm not physically fearful (maybe a little of not having security latches on open windows at night)... Maybe a little of knowing that a bunch of people have our door access code and have keys to my room... But I don't think it is entirely reasonable for me to feel physically unsafe... But psychologically... I feel psychologically invaded. I don't feel that I have my solitary... I just don't.

I suppose I heard before I moved in here that the staff / grad students mostly lived further out... So it isn't convenient to walk... That here was mixed... I was hopeful... But, yeah, I think mostly people do know... Here isn't workable. Of course, lots of people think here is workable. Lots of people focus in on the real ghetto further down the hill and think here is wonderful... But it's not. It's not for me. I don't fit here.

My peers are academics, really. I'm not a grad student anymore. I mean... PhD students... They seem like kids, mostly. They aren't peers anymore. And grad students here are different from grad students where I went to grad school, anyway...

I feel really very uncomfortable. I have an appointment with a social worker from a church tomorrow. Can only find social workers with church organisations, apparently. See if I can get her to help me with the social housing thing, again, or with the private alternative... Which will be more expensive...

It's all discretion and their rationale... They've given up even trying to make it make sense...

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on November 6, 2016, at 0:53:22

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on November 6, 2016, at 0:16:54

I think things are getting worse in this country. I think things got worse during my time away. It was hard to say... Since I moved to different places so a direct comparison was hard... But I think things have gotten worse.

I think things are better here than they are in Auckland partly because here is further away. Further behind. When things are heading in a bad direction then it is better to be further behind.

But the same elements are here. The building construction is going on. The building construction that was finished in Auckland. The 'Dental' building they are calling it here. Because here nobody talks about 'Medical' ever - people use 'Dental' as a code word for 'Medical' and 'Medical is code word for allied health. People who have 3 year degrees in Occupational Therapy who write prescriptions for old people to put higher wattage bulbs in their reading lights. That kind of thing...

Once the buildings have been constructed... My guess is that enrolments will skyrocket. Residential high rises... We will see... They will follow along, yes. And you'll have a plywood partition student ghetto.
_______________

'Culturally appropriate' and 'equity' are code words for 'nobody gets anything'. It would be 'racist' if you were to suggest that this wasn't the best strategy. For example, to keep a prisoner in a cell by themself would be inhumane solitary confinement. On the other hand, to keep a bunch of prisoners together in an open floor plan where they can freely hit an punch etc each other would be 'culturally appropriate'. They are talking about 'culturally appropriate' education... One can only suppose they mean 'education' that doesn't involve... Reading, writing, arithmetic. 'Education' that doesn't get people skilled so as to design, build, maintain infrastructure like clean drinking water, sewer systems, electric and telecommunications etc etc etc. None of those things are culturally appropriate, I bet. We would rather nobody had them. IN the name of equity

_________________

Infant mortality went down.

You can't exactly take that back. Well, you can... But I don't see that happening. I don't understand how people would prefer to forgo aged care... Would prefer to keep starting over and over and over and over and over. Keep ignoring the wisdom that has accumulated... Keep trying to reinvent the wheel. Or the axel. Or the ballbearing. Or whatever...

Politics. It's best to stay the hell away from indigenous politics. I think that is probably it. I mean, it isn't like non-indigenous politics is fearing so very much better...

_________________

I keep thinking about those locusts. How they thought the swarming ones and the non swarming ones were different species because their morphology was so different. I mean, one was green and the other was black. And the behavior was different... Some would swarm and devastate crops. An immense pest. The other were solitary. Just hung out by themselves and didn't cause such harm with their foraging.

And then it was discovered that they were the same species... And which developmental trajectory they went down depended on their early life experiences. If they got their little hindlegs stroked by paintbrushes then they would grow up to swarm. If they were crowded by things that moved they would grow up to swarm.

I think people might be a bit like that.

I don't know.

I'm tired of having to justify myself to... Of having to explain myself to... Of having to beg for what I need... I'm tired of people putting me with the wrong group of people... I'm tired of people trying to make me feel guilty for not fitting in well with the wrong group of people...

I wish I were rich enough to have my own space. It would be a 'mansion'. The idea would be to have a house... Where I could open the windows and have trees and happy birds. Where I didn't see or hear other people. Where I could invite people over if I was lonely or go out and meet with people if I was lonely.. But where I never had to interact with people. Then you go from your private garage out your bolted gates to your private parking building. So you don't have people taking photos of you and tagging you on face book without your permission etc, you see.

And I would like to help people. I would like to learn... I mean... I'm on disability... The funds I get don't depend on my studying or working... But I choose to voluntarily... Because I have a genuine desire to learn... To help people, even... (Not to write them lighting prescriptions or to be 'we' on demand to be swamped...)

Public spaces...

It's all gone private here. I really do think... Most everything... Has gone private. The public spaces of the world...

People take photographs of hospital food and upload to facebook. People take photos in gym public change rooms...

Decimated desert ...

surveillance children...

giving all their keychain access to every passing van...

We have been taken over. WHoever controls the infrastructure is in control. Of course that's got something to do with the 'culturally appropriate' education. If I say this I'm going to sound like a horrible human being... But US exchange students and junior lecturers I've met... WEre not the brightest... Community college kids... Of wealthy parents. If you had a not very bright kid it might well make sense to send them here... When you choose between psychopathic or stupid plausible deniability... Positions of leadership... They'll fit right on in...

It doesn't feel like we have control of this country any more... If we ever did. I don't know. I see Australia receeding and that scares me. Perhaps because Australia is doing so well... England is receeding too... Bye bye laws... Laws for the benefit of the citizens. I'm trying to think of when we have passed those... Rather than for the interests of business. Probably written by the businesses lawyers. Probably to help disguise the fact that nobody in this country is capable of writing law...

My heart sinks...

I don't feel very happy here. Not today. I don't feel safe here... The noisiest bullies always win.

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on November 6, 2016, at 1:09:06

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on November 6, 2016, at 0:53:22

I think it is because we were right there on the boundary of 'developed' and 'developing' (insofar as it is possible to talk of such things without being racist). And I think that we have been sliding towards the developing and the developed is receeding...

I think that people are focused on the wrong things... People think that we are developing because now everyone had the internet.

But here's the thing: Here's a problem: What are people up to? Wouldn't it be terrific if we could electronically track every single member of the population. How on earth will we get them to submit to being tagged and who will pay for it all? Here's the solution: Get them to pay for mobile devices. Get them to pay for online access.

Here's the thing: You don't have to pay for online access. If you don't set it up to automatically take funds then once your access expires... After a couple days of 'reminders'... Eventually... Access will be miraculously restored. Free wifi connection or whatever. Because whose interests is mobile connectivity serving, again.

?

If you want to see a photo of what 'developed' looks like... They show you pics of how these nations are doing well because... Because the kids have Nike shoes and i-pads.

Only... It's the poor kids who have Nike shoes and i-pads.

That's the thing... It's the poor kids who are constantly streaming their surroundings to facebook and voluntarily providing tag information to help google better identify faces...

It's the poor kids. But they think it's a symbol of wealth.

I feel upset... That we can't do a bunch of things here, ourselves. And I wonder sometimes how much there is intent behind undermining them... I wonder sometimes if this really is the toilet of the developed world... If getting out of this country really is the thing because nothing here is allowed to work... If something is discovered to work then it will be undermined... Or if there are unfortunate by-products... Such that people could genuinely make a difference...

I guess you ask yourself about where people send their kids... And I guess the answer is... Cambridge curriculum. And... Wherever they can get a scholarship to go to.

And there it is.

Really not having a good day, today.

Maybe things will feel brighter tomorrow?

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on November 6, 2016, at 1:47:33

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on November 6, 2016, at 1:09:06

...And the ethernet cable seems to work. Which is terrific. And does get me feeling a little badly about my flatmates...

Who are terrific people.

But things aren't working because...

I need to live by myself.

...I am getting a feeling of 'project'. Like... People might have been trying to teach me that it would be fun to live with flatmates.

...Only... I'm 37ish... And I'm pretty sure I have a good handle on what is best for me. My problem... For the longest time... Has been that I haven't had the means to do what is best for me.

I think I have been given more freedom... Gradually... The transition to disability was a big one. They saw that I don't spend all my money on 2 minute noodles and cheap alcohol... I feel like it has been a bit of a... Trust building exercise... Over the last however long. It just feels like it is taking too freaking long an awful lot of the time... Wasting a whole year in Petone then a whole other year at AUT and then 2 years at Auckland... I suppose it was nearly 3 to be fair... And if I get a 1 bedroom place for next year then it was a productive 6 months down here, indeed.

It's hard because I don't have class. I coped really well with finding a place etc when I moved down here. Things held together for class. Now things feel kind of aimless and floaty. A 4 month block of... Whatever. I have stuff to be doing... Am making good anatomy progress etc... Still have seminars to get to...

Have licence to be studying for. Flats to be viewing etc. But it's not the same...

They are getting to know me... Trust... I think it will be okay. I'll be okay in a 1 bedroom place... I'm feeling excited about it, honestly. Thinking about all the stupid things that I've not had for so very long. My own cheap vaccum cleaner. I mean, my very own. My own dishcloth in the sink. Stupid things... Dehumanising... To not have basic self sufficiency.

Only... Most people don't seem to feel that way. So... I don't know what to say.

I suppose I've had institutionalised moments.

To be fair.

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on November 28, 2016, at 2:45:31

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on November 6, 2016, at 1:47:33

well... after months of contemplation... the academic powers that be decide to give her a B+. whether that's what the department recommended... or whether it's what the academic board adjusted it to be... i suppose that is probably about the best you are allowed to do when you weren't coming in on full scholarship living in one of the residential colleges...

and there it is.

i'll get my script and take a look...

without seeing other scripts i don't have any thing to go off. i suspect it is probably the last chunk of the course where they expected us to regurgitate a bunch of stuff back that was learned last year / was learned concurrently in other classes.

maybe i messed things up more than i supposed...

i don't expect so.

the last guy things oddly. he asked us to draw in the hippocampus in a midsaggital view and i pointed out that the hippocampus isn't visible in midsaggital view. for no marks out of four. then he asked us to come up with a novel experiment for something... which was impossible for me... i mean... do you know how hard it is for people to come up with workable experiments for their PhD? i wouldn't know where to begin coming up with a hair brained idea at undergraduate level. or perhaps i was supposed to regurgitate an idea from somewhere? f*ck knows what he wanted...

then we were asked to draw a picture of... and the only way i could see to parse the question was to draw 8 pictures. like wtf?

i guess some people did well.

everyone, actually. everyone did better in his section than the sections before... except for me. huh.

i don't feel so good about this, anymore.

i think 3rd year is going to be impossible.

all of it, to be honest.

there really isn't much in the way of university left in the university anymore.

and i think i'm kidding myself to think that there is anything at all in the way of excellence... arete... worth... in healthcare.

this really is b*llsh*t.

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on November 28, 2016, at 3:04:05

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on November 28, 2016, at 2:45:31

oh. i think i did mess up the multiple guess. because it really did feel like multiple guess. it felt like they had... gone fishing.

we got asked about x.

and i said 'in the lecture you said this about x'.
'but then in the lab you said that people weren't thinking that about x anymore, instead they were thinking this other thing'.
'so it isn't clear to me what to think about x'.

and you can say that in essay.
though i don't know that you get any marks for it.

when people were bickering about getting certain multi guess questions wrong at Auckland she was like 'well that question was a high end distinguisher because only whatever percentage of people got it right'. but the problem was that people were complaining because while one was obviously false and while two were fairly obviously false to most the problem was that nobody could come up with a reason why one rather than the other was considered correct. not the people who got it right and not the people who got it wrong. the question didn't seem to distinguish between a random element.

the questions felt like they were fishing, again, between two. i know when all goes well with a question that it should be a high end distinguisher between 2... but what you want is for people to go 'aha!' once it has been explained... and for someone who got it right to be able to explain it. here... questions are withheld... so... that's exactly what you don't have.

but you do get to see which students are predictive of... 'high end consensus' or something equally meaningless. i don't know... perhaps the students from st freaking somewhere all get told 'when you can't distinguish then choose the sequentially first' or something so that all their scholarship kids agree...

i don't think things bode particularly well for me here, anymore. there isn't much university left in university. i walk into the building... this lovely historic building... with this huge flatscreen on the wall flickering advertising at me... i walk up one flight and there are two huge flatscreens on the wall flickering advertising at me... the whole campus is just a huge billboard advertisement... it's dirty and filled with too many noisy students... keeping them busy with busywork of click click clicking their surveillance devices and tagging each others faces for the software programs... all the things we learned about the addictive aspect of gambling... the modern day assembly line of click and paste and copy and paste and check connection and type password and click and paste and wait and update... and it's better for our health than working in the factory... except people become obese and have feet problems and back problems and ankle problems and knee problems and cancer problems...

it's really rather nasty here.

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on December 11, 2016, at 3:29:37

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on November 28, 2016, at 3:04:05

my mother is really a rather nasty piece of work.
the more distance between us, the better.
the less people assume i'm just like her, the better.
the less i have to worry about being just like her, the better.

i had a conversation with a work and income worker the other day...
recent thing they've started... redirecting rent payments. so, i don't pay my rent, rather they redirect my rent out of my disability so i never see it.
only it is getting close to time to me to move... so i ask them to stop the redirects...
and i get a work and income worker... just like my mother.
she starts up about how i need a letter from my landlord before they'll stop the redirects (b*llsh*t)
about how if the redirects over-pay my rent i'm liable and not them (i'm not)
and so on
and on
and on
and on
and on.

eventually i give myself a short sharp punch to the side of the head.
WHACK
and say (in a cool, clear voice) 'that hurt me less than listening to you talk'
and indeed it did
story of my life, really
she upped and walked away
(thank god)
only problem being: i need the redirects to stop

i'd rather my bank do my redirects
because when i go in to my bank to get the redirects to stop:
nobody talks to me like that
the bank doesn't hire all variety of stupid
the bank doesn't hire all variety of talking a bunch of b*llsh*t for no other reason than to upset you
the bank doesn't give me this 'i'm just like your mother' f*ck*ng b*llsh*t
which is all so very Exciting and Dramatic for people like my mother
with nothing f*ck*ng better to be doing with their lives
with nothing f*ck*ng better to be doing with their time
with nothing f*ck*ng better
who never wanted to be
who only revelled in the cheapest and nastiest sh*t
precisely because it was the cheapest and nastiest sh*t
because seeking and obtaining the cheapest and nastiest sh*t was only self promotion or advertising
for the people to come out of the woodworks...
the people only looking for people...
who they could treat the cheapest and nastiest

this is f*ck*ng b*llsh*t

i'm so f*ck*ng tired of it

so tired of it

i'm sick of here

because they never will let me escape that rubbish
because:

people simply aren't capable of assessing anything on it's merits

and anything that used to be an indicator of that... has been totally undermined.
see, we used to be more of a meritocracy
so then those people ran the f*ck away
so now we've introduced this randomisation element...
worked really hard at promoting the stupid and nasty
worked really hard at undermining anything that isn't stupid and nasty

and somehow...

a bunch of people are left feeling a whole heap better.

makes me want to heave

it's not me... it really is this place

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on December 11, 2016, at 3:41:14

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on December 11, 2016, at 3:29:37

and i just don't understand why it is that people want this place to be a reservoir for the stupid and nasty. a haven for all that is stupid and nasty in this world.

i sort of understand that a bunch of rich people want to send their stupid kids here... the kids who can't get into more than community colleges in the US (despite heavy parental investment)... they think if they send them to university here they'll be hailed as leaders...

and i suppose they'd be right. if they are stupid enough, it just might be so.

and that's about it, really.

aside from that...

there isn't anything here.

my last class... the first 1/3 involved their actually teaching us and assessing us on what we'd been taught. but that's about it. the other teaching staff expected to free-load off what OTHER people had taught people in OTHER classes. my major... it's a b*llsh*t major. doesn't have teaching staff assigned... doesn't have course outlines... people aren't of the perspective that it would be a good idea to have people really take onboard the standard stuff of the field (e.g., really internalise Kandel for neuroscience or Boron for physiology)... instead... it's about trying to get and keep the kids with the best stats... because nobody can afford a proper bio-statistician. so 3rd year physiology is all about who can make the prettiest graphs (something they don't teach you) and so on...

it's a crock, in other words. just enough rubbish to squeak by... nothing much in the way of intellectual honesty...

i don't know why i got it into my head that civilisation was further along...

i grieve for the loss of human potential

i feel... i waste my life here. i grieve for my loss of human potential. you get people who want to work... and they aren't allowed. somehow or other people have convinced people that they must ignore those who want to, they must ignore those who are motivated, they must instead try and get something for nothing (bio-staticians out of thin air) or must instead pick and invest in the stupid and ill motivated somehow or other in the name of 'equity' most typically...

and people just collect data... like astronomical data prior to the copernican revolution. like behaviorist data on hen pecking etc prior to the cognitive revolution. think that somehow stats will sort things out and lead to revolutionary advances in the field? The only kind of progress we care about / understand...

there isn't really anything left of 'university' in the university. it's just a glorified tech. worse than... not turning out competent anything. just... idling by a few years of childhood... getting people deeper into debt...

i'm really rather sick of here.

i made a bad decision in coming back / starting over. i thought things were a meritocracy and they aren't. working hard... being smart... just makes the kids of rich people look bad and nobody wants that. nobody with any power. that's how pro-social / concerned with humanity / homo sapiens people are... about that...

i don't know that i particularly want to live in that kind of world. the way that world is. plenty of people seem happy enough with it... good luck to them. i didn't ask to be here... not like this.

 

Re: still here

Posted by alexandra_k on December 11, 2016, at 4:10:06

In reply to Re: still here, posted by alexandra_k on December 11, 2016, at 3:41:14

sigh.

and it's probably alright.

in the time since i've moved down here...

i got through a semester...

i may have student accommodation sorted for next year (still working on that)
i may have a motorcycle (progress is being made, very probable, indeed)

which is more than i managed to sort in a couple years in auckland.

i'm just sick to death of... idling about the swamp. which is how things have felt, rather, since returning. like people are happy for me to waste my life yakking to work and income workers about how they can't stop automatic payments without letters from my landlord and about how i can't move on to more suitable accommodation without eviction letters from my landlord...

why do we hire them?

when there are so very many smart and hardworking and willing kids about the place?
why can't we seek out and reward all that is good?
because it will only go on to move up and out and away?
maybe it wouldn't be so determined to do that...
if we stopped treating it like sh*t
if we stopped insisting that only the stupidist and nastiest was fitting for here...
she'd never have gotten a job in the private sector, i understand that
but why we aren't happier with a higher turnover of capable people in the public sector, i don't understand

couldn't be doing a better job of undermining the public sector than if that was the specific intention

couldn't be doing a better job of exterminating maaori than they are doing with nominating the particular (selfishly interested) leaders they are nominating

(though somehow it's racist to say that)

i don't understand why we have to be the trashheap of th eworld


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