August 19, 2002

recommended reading

Recommended reading: first, the sensible ones.

  • href="">Bastion, to read about how a marriage is
    still an ongoing work (replete with the imperfections of a living organism) even
    after 60 (?) years.
  • href="">Thistledown, on how to classify
    prioritize life-sucking activities.
  • href="">AK, to read about how even the best of us fall
    down sometimes, on even the things that are most important to us.
    • Then it's on to someone who needs to work a bit more on her
      logic skills. Someone recently wrote to href="
      55/225kg.html">Ann Landers
      about the increasing prevalence of self-destructive
      behaviors among Americans: "As we descend further and further down the slippery
      slope of addictions (which include not only alcohol, drugs and cigarettes, but
      shopping, gambling, overeating, sexual obsessions, and more), we are becoming a
      nation so harmful to itself that terrorists need only sit back and watch us self-
      destruct. How can we be truly strong and healthy as a nation when we are comprised
      of individuals who are not strong and healthy?" Interesting opint, though I tend
      to think it's not entirely that simple an equation.

      Ann's answer
      included this: "People usually engage in self-destructive behaviors because they
      are trying to avoid dealing with unpleasant emotions or situations -- so they
      comfort themselves with substances or behaviors that when used to excess can be
      damaging." Valid so far, but that's where her logic falls short. That paragraph is
      crying out for further analysis. If, for the sake of argument, you assume Ann's
      right, and her correspondent is also, then those two propositions lead irrovocably
      to the conclusion that Americans are experiencing an epidemic of 'unpleasant
      emotions or situations'. I don't know. Maybe we're not -- maybe one or both of
      those premises is untrue. But if we are, then that's a problem worth some serious
      study and it might be more profitable to go to work on the root cause than to try
      to treat each manifestation of symptom individually, as we have been

      Sports report:

      I rowed 10,500 meters
      today, That's not quite 2 full laps so I'm still a weenie compared to my husband,
      who's been trying to row 4 laps once a week. Ick. I have no desire to do that,
      ever. The city program and the juniors were back out on the water today after
      their summer hiatuses (what's the correct plural of that?) so the boatyard was
      unpleasantly crowded. I've gotten spoiled lately, having to share the lake with
      just a few other scullers. If I don't watch it, I'll be slacking off again, or
      going to rowing on only two days. I'm going to tentatively plan to do the race in
      Newport, CA, this year, just to give myself a training objective.

      Slightly disappointing: when I went to check out href="">Mer's report that MSN
      is cataloging online diaries, with blurbs about each one, I found, regrettably,
      that it's true but that all Diaryland diaries are lumped together as "A community
      of writers who keep online diaries." Well, I suppose.

      Posted by dichroic at August 19, 2002 11:21 AM
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