Hristo's FI Journal

Where are you and where are you going?
Alphaville
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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Alphaville »

Hristo Botev wrote:
Mon Sep 21, 2020 10:58 am

That's exactly my point, "they" (i.e., the folks working at Spotify trying to get Joe Rogan "cancelled" for having someone(s) on his show questioning the trans thing) are NOT snowflakes. It's a power struggle, and they are very effectively using the tools at their disposal. "We" (i.e., the idiots who haven't yet realized we are living in a post-ideological world) are getting played as we laugh at the "snowflakes" and say stupid shit like "the facts don't care about your feelings" (B. Shapiro); the facts are in reality totally irrelevant in this Marcusian power struggle. Equate words and other non-violent conduct with aggression, "micro" or otherwise; and then you've justified responding to non-violent behavior with violence. It's a smart strategy; and it's scary because it is working so effectively.
i don’t know how you’re defining snowflake but didn’t it mean people whose feelings got easily hurt and didn’t tolerate debate/dissent?

if so, these people would qualify as such, except that now they have a little bit of power, unlike, say, when they were in college.

but... maybe that’s a good thing? this is their time anyway, and i see boomers vs millenials clashing for the public sphere.

genxers are just caught in the crossfire, and their morality is also caught between both eras. louis ck, while he asked for permission after all, learned his sexual politics from his elders, but found out the hard way that times had changed.

if the new millenial puritanism feels like the rules changed mid-game, it’s because they did. but the rules had to change at some point, and the boomers were sitting on the rulebook for way too long. so now millenials are attempting to shake the fleas hahaha.

the thing is though, i wouldn’t worry so much about left wing snowflakes with a little power, when right wing snowflakes are the ones with the real political power. and their cancellations are so pervasive and commonplace we no longer notice them.

today’s newsletter by paul krugman makes that very point—right wing snowflakes don’t tolerate discussions of science, climate change, the pandemic, evolution, the legacy of slavery, and now they’re “cancelling” three major cities by declaring them “anarchist jurisdictions” and cutting off federal funds. lolwut.

pseudointellectual bro joe rogan and a hunk of bronze, as casualties... a mere mote in the eye of the left. the beam is clearly elsewhere, and we shouldn’t miss it. the result of right wing cancellations are mishandled pandemics, the perpetuation of structural racism and sexism, accelerated climate change... life-or-death problems, not aesthetic ones, and the kids are right to use whatever tools are at their disposal, even if they’re just shooting flies with cannons right now. ooo, spotify!

-

and in latest news: the right wing snowflakes are trying to cancel voting in pennsylvania because they can’t tolerate the thought of people doing their civic duty :lol:

*keep an eye on the beam*

Hristo Botev
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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Hristo Botev »

Alphaville wrote:
Tue Sep 22, 2020 7:23 pm
i don’t know how you’re defining snowflake but didn’t it mean people whose feelings got easily hurt and didn’t tolerate debate/dissent?

if so, these people would qualify as such, except that now they have a little bit of power, unlike, say, when they were in college.
I think perhaps we're speaking past each other here. The folks that my side of the aisle have been laughingly branding as "snowflakes" for the past decade or so (with the safe spaces, trigger warnings, micro aggressions, etc.), from their days in high school and college to their entry into the workplace: (a) DON'T ACTUALLY HAVE EASILY HURT FEELINGS, but also (b) DON'T TOLERATE DEBATE/DISSENT. "We" have been viewing these folks as products of the silly helicopter parenting, everyone gets a trophy, everyone is special, etc. trope--AS IF these folks are delicate little pushovers that can't handle the slightest bit of conflict without crawling into a corner in the fetal position to drown in their own tears.

My point is that this view is WRONG. The reality appears to me to be that this is all a very effective and well thought-out strategy to gain power, at the expense of a constitutional framework that is meant to protect the minority from the will and potential tyranny of the majority. See, e.g., Marcuse's essay "Repressive Tolerance":

Liberating tolerance, then, would mean intolerance against movements from the Right and toleration of movements from the Left. Surely, no government can be expected to foster its own subversion, but in a democracy such a right is vested in the people (i.e. in the majority of the people). This means that the ways should not be blocked on which a subversive majority could develop, and if they are blocked by organized repression and indoctrination, their reopening may require apparently undemocratic means. They would include the withdrawal of toleration of speech and assembly from groups and movements that promote aggressive policies, armament, chauvinism, discrimination on the grounds of race and religion, or that oppose the extension of public services, social security, medical care, etc.

The problem, of course, is who gets to define what constitutes "repression," and how? And what's to stop this "subversive majority" from redefining repression--and discrimination, chauvinism, and aggressive policies, or, to use a couple of your terms, "structural racism and sexism," anti science, or fostering climate change--tomorrow, and then the day after, and so on, in whatever manner is necessary to effectuate your grasp for power. It's brilliant, really: just label anyone or anything that stands in the way to your path to obtaining more power as racist, or sexist, or repressive--and when that doesn't work, label them/it as "structurally" or "systemically" so--and Voila!, you've effectively removed that person or thing or idea from the public square.

ETA: I feel compelled to make gratuitous use of ALL CAPS to compensate for your seeming reluctance to use CAPS at all! :D Are capital letters systemically racist?

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Alphaville »

Hristo Botev wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 8:54 am
It's brilliant, really: just label anyone or anything that stands in the way to your path to obtaining more power as racist, or sexist, or repressive--and when that doesn't work, label them/it as "structurally" or "systemically" so--and Voila!, you've effectively removed that person or thing or idea from the public square.
but don’t the wingnuts do the same (or worse) when they brand things and people they disagree with “terrorist” “godless” “unamerican” “unpatriotic” and then cut federal funds, delegitimize intelligence agencies, block corruption probes, hide the truth about plagues, suppress voting, etc? :lol:

anyway, i’m keeping my response short as i don’t know if you want to continue this here in your journal or in the politics threads. certainly don’t want to hijack, or trigger anyone with my lowercase lines.

but seriously, i’ll gladly discuss as long as it’s a productive exchange. none of us has time to waste in pissing contests, yeah?

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by AxelHeyst »

I disagree. I think snowflakes *do* have easily hurt feelings, but the assumption that their hurt feelings result in crippling crying fits in the corner is what is incorrect. Their feelings get hurt, and then they get mad, and then they get organized, and then they start doing stuff.

And "their feelings get hurt" is sort of wrong too. They tend to be people who are very sensitive to perceived injustice and unfairness. It's not so much personal attacks *on they themselves* that pisses them off, it's perceived injustices against people(s) who are disadvantaged already. It's basically a "wtf! that dude just kicked a defenseless puppy" reaction. Ever watched a video of teenagers beating a stray puppy with a skateboard? That's the "feels" the snowflakes are dealing with. And then imagine how they feel when other teenage boys laugh at them for caring about a defenseless puppy.

Eta: Some notes for clarity after Jacobs post:
-I tend to be in the snowflake camp, or at least poking around the fringes of their camp around mealtime before retiring to my own tent out in the woods.
-the point of my post was to somewhat agree with Hristos two points, but perhaps add some nuance from my perspective which is probably a little closer to the inner sanctums of snowflake discourse.
-the puppy analogy is a good one I think, because it makes a point about perception. Where snowflakes go wrong is when they perceive a puppy getting beaten, when no such thing is happening, but they react that way nonetheless and paint the “puppy beaters” as monsters, when of course they are no such thing. The enormous depth of feeling where everything is black and white (and red for blood) shuts down all discourse, and morally justifies actions like vigilantism, overstepping PC culture, imposing editorial oversight on podcasts, etc. Until snowflakes can chill a bit, there is no hope for a civil conversation about how to move forward as a people theoretically united under a certain flag.
Last edited by AxelHeyst on Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:41 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by jacob »

Regardless of where it/this goes and before it goes further, I recommend against "fighting" words or "fighting" emojis when making a point. This generally means avoiding words that the opposition wouldn't use about themselves. Such taunts, whether explicit or implicit, accomplish nothing but hardening up positions. In addition, some simultaneous acknowledgement of the shenanigans played by one's own side insofar they're happening gets serious brownie points in my book---this does not imply or demand accepting false equivalences as much as taking some responsibility and demonstrating self-awareness for the rules of the game. I suppose I say this partly as moderator and partly as someone with a disdain for sportsfan politics.

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Hristo Botev »

No one person or institution should brand anyone or anything
Alphaville wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:41 am
[a] “terrorist” “godless” “unamerican” [or] “unpatriotic”
just because that person/institution disagrees with that other person/thing. And they also shouldn't
Alphaville wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:41 am
cut federal funds, delegitimize intelligence agencies, block corruption probes, hide the truth about plagues, suppress voting, etc
merely because they/it disagree with the other. Ditto for branding people racist, sexist, bigot, and so forth, even if you think that person's opinion/viewpoint is repressive in some way. Doing so shuts down the ability to have reasoned argument.

My point is that it's naïve (and wrong-headed) for conservatives to dismiss someone as being a spineless "snowflake" when they attempt to cancel someone or something as racist, sexist, whatever, rather than engage with and address the differing position/worldview head on. Ditto when a liberal dismisses a conservative as being a wingnut or as retreating to their retro-world safe space, if that conservative is attempting to cancel someone/thing as "unamerican," "godless," or a "terrorist." From whatever side, it's not someone being overly sensitive or having their feelings hurt, it's someone using a cheap and short-sighted tactic to silence the other and avoid substantive argument.

THAT MEANS, if a conservative calls Kapernick or whoever "unamerican" or "unpatriotic" for not standing for the National Anthem; what's really going on is that the conservative is using a cheap tactic to silence Kapernick and dismiss his opinion/position on police brutality or whatever, as opposed to dealing with that opinion/position head on, to identify where/why it's right, wrong, and where there's common ground. Ditto for a liberal branding someone a bigot, etc. because that person doesn't think boys should compete with girls in girls sports, or because they advocate for children being raised by a mom and a dad, and so forth.

Also, what is a "fighting" emoji? In my old man Internet obliviousness did I miss an opportunity to be triggered? Or did I send someone a triggering "fighting" emoji without even realizing it?

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Hristo Botev »

Alphaville wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:41 am
anyway, i’m keeping my response short as i don’t know if you want to continue this here in your journal or in the politics threads. certainly don’t want to hijack, or trigger anyone with my lowercase lines.

but seriously, i’ll gladly discuss as long as it’s a productive exchange. none of us has time to waste in pissing contests, yeah?
As I've told you before, you're always welcome to hijack my journal (insert emoji intended to relay my genuine sincerity, really, truly and honestly)--I appreciate that you're always there waiting in the wings to tell me where and how I'm being wrong-headed whenever I use my journal to vent my retro-world safe space frustrations, in order to maintain my sanity IRL. Also, you should know by now I live in a constant state of triggered-ness; if it wasn't you it'd be someone or something else that would be triggering me.

Also also, I have nothing but time to waste in pissing contests.

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by jennypenny »

As an older GenXer, I grew up in an era where the general attitude of don't-give-a-shit-about-anything was de rigueur. I find today's hypersensitivity to everything puzzling and amusing. Well, I used to find it amusing. Now with most people's sensitivity meter dialed up to eleven, there's a growing cohort of perpetually aggrieved (on *both* sides), making discussion and compromise impossible. Covid has made this worse. Who could think clearly if they hyperventilate over tweets and news stories daily, and mentally frame everything as the most important/egregious thing ever? DEFCON1 is no way to go through life.

Sorry for interjecting in your journal, HB ... can you tell I'm sick of everyone? :lol:

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Hristo Botev »

jennypenny wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:09 pm
Sorry for interjecting in your journal, HB ... can you tell I'm sick of everyone? :lol:
You are also of course always welcome to interject in my journal; and certainly don't need to apologize (unless of course that's a "fighting" emoji!).
jennypenny wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:09 pm
Now with most people's sensitivity meter dialed up to eleven, there's a growing cohort of perpetually aggrieved (on *both* sides), making discussion and compromise impossible. Covid has made this worse. Who could think clearly if they hyperventilate over tweets and news stories daily, and mentally frame everything as the most important/egregious thing ever? DEFCON1 is no way to go through life.
Some good advice I need to take: stop listening to podcasts on my walks into work, stop reading online news while at work, and stop watching YouTube. Thanks to the algorithms (I'm guessing; I'm no computer guy), those things seem to be custom tailored to make me think some Antifa rioter is waiting around the corner to smack me in the head with a brick so that he can take my guns, my books, my control over my kids' education, and my ability to worship as I choose. I'm sure it's not really THAT bad, right?.

I need to just stick with books, music, and my morning newspaper (and of course reruns of Tim Allen sitcoms on my digital antenna; ha!).

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by jacob »

So yeah WRT "fighting emojis" and trying to steer this [forum] ship through these troubling/divisive/disinformation/pre-election waters, lemmesplain ...

I'm trying to retain this forum in frozen state of internet culture during the very early 1990s or late 1980s. Back then, there were only 3-4 emojis in common use(*). Namely

Code: Select all

:-) :-( ;-) :-P 
meant to take the edge off of statements that could often sound harsher on the screen than they were intended. In the past 5ish years, emojis have practically exploded into a hieroglyphic language of their own spoken fluently only by GenZ. Other generations speak more of a kind of hieroglyphic pidgin depending on how much time they spend on facebook, twitter, or the comment tracks on various online media. Obviously some have adopted their use more than others.

On social media and especially in political discussions of the trollish kind emojis are often used the other way around than originally intended, specifically to add an extra edge to a statement. Therein lies the problem. Commonly observed ones are the eyeroll ( :roll: ), the laugh out loud ( :lol: or LOL), the triple laugh ( :lol: :lol: :lol: or lololol... or lmao), and the idk/idc shrug (which fortunately is not available here). These don't perform well in online politics because an issue/controversy that one considers hysterically funny might be very serious (always "too soon") to another; something that's really important to some might be irrelevant to others.

In other words, using them in those contexts is not helping to keep things civilized.

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by jennypenny »

jennypenny wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 4:09 pm
Sorry for interjecting in your journal, HB ... can you tell I'm sick of everyone? :lol:
Sorry jacob, didn't know I was using a fighting emoji. In my defense, I was directing it at the world outside of the forum (that's who I meant by 'everyone'). I'm more tempted than before to go full-on Mark Boyle, but (ashamedly) for the quiet first, planet second.

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Alphaville »

Hristo Botev wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 1:08 pm
I appreciate that you're always there waiting in the wings to tell me where and how I'm being wrong-headed whenever I use my journal to vent my retro-world safe space frustrations, in order to maintain my sanity IRL.
ha ha ha ha, i don't know how to read that. i can read it both ways: "thanks, i welcome the feedback" or "sure, you're welcome to stay around. now fuck off" :lol:

maybe i'm a little autistic. maybe i overthink things. i don't know.

in any case, i really believe i'm trying to make reasonable points here. i guess my bias is that i see this board as a problem-solving collective. i'm not saying this is the right way to see it, nor am i saying that this must be this way. it's just how i approach what i read here. i have problems dealing with venting-- i always reply with a solution or question or something. maybe i should learn to just listen when people vent. tall order...

i'm not wholly "on the other side" of your position btw. i'm more against categorical RIGHT and WRONG. the world is complex and full of nuance. maybe i'm jesuitic.

a bit on my background, perhaps to explain.

being sandwiched in the same irrelevant generation as you (i mean we're stuck between two large groups of people that control the culture), i have shared some of the same frustrations as you with the changing mores and what is considered tolerable and intolerable in the public sphere, and well as changes in the ideological makeup of social classes.

e.g., i left a career in academia tired of the dogmatic leftist politics of humanities departments. and i went into the small business world in search of liberty. i don’t know if i found liberty, but i did learn practical capitalism and economics.

i also left a city that was being transformed by hordes of latte-sipping "liberal" hipsters with trust funds and i went "back to the land" (retro-world) for space and freedom and self-determination. (today those hipsters are probably the parents at the schools your kids left, ha ha ha.)

from the problem-solving approach (not the venting approach, i don't know how to deal with venting, im an insensitive nerd) i can see clearly that such exits were not all they're cracked up to be, and the things i rejected maybe were not so horrid after all, and that big corporations also have their good sides, and that in the countryside you often trade wokeness for pig ignorance, and that maybe--maybe--making an effort at adaptation to change can save one a long detour to nowhere or beating one’s head against a brick wall. or not. everyone lives their own lives after all.

but e.g., corporate work life may be stultifying, but small businesses can be hell. i've seen small business owners use their female employees as their private harem, with no hr department and no recourse for grievance. maybe those workers would have been better off in a big corporation with all kinds of wokeness rules? it sure beats sexual coercion (was it really voluntary?). i stopped doing business with those people, who were otherwise nice people with a weakness for sexual conquest (and boomer morality, see below), but the employees need a paycheck to survive. can they really say no? (again see below). mom and dad businesses are great? sure they can be. but maybe mom and dad are assholes too. there's no clearcut rule.

regarding the change of morality where we're sandwiched, i'll use sexual politics as oversimplification and example of changing times:

boomers: no means yes! try harder / don't be uptight (weinstein)
gen-xers: no means no! she didn't say no so i kept going (louis ck)
millennials: affirmative consent or gtfo

mores are always changing and the future will bring something else. millennials and gen-z kids will be condemned by the future as well. the ball keeps rolling. who knows where to.

so, while i found the oversensitive kids annoying at first, i can see that what they're doing is what every generation does, which is changing the world in their own image (but us genxers were outnumbered so we didn’t really get the chance). and while their approach is far from perfect, maybe it's not that wrong in the large scheme of things. i see a lot of well-meaning, kind, earnest, well socialized kids making an effort to make things better. if they all got medals maybe they lreaned something of value in there about leaving nobody behind. and maybe the excesses you see (rogan, statues) are an expression of their actual powerlessness to change "real" things like rising oceans or police brutality. we'll find out, eventually, once they get elected to office in large numbers. but the future is theirs. we’re already over the hill.

anyway, similar changes are happening in other spheres of morality, and the people who didn't get the memo will have to learn the new rules. the kids don't have time for the gerontocracy to catch up with the changing morality, whether it's about sex or race or something else. i'm more curious than opinionated about that these days. life is a carnival.

and i'm sure one day i'll be publicly berated for eating meat. in the meantime, please pass the bacon. but maybe the kids are right that we need to eat less meat? me me me me me vs the public good? life is a negotiation but the terms are always changing. i'm open to whatever will come.

this was all to say, from the problem solving perspective, that i may agree or disagree with some assessments or some solutions, but categorical assessments and absolute solutions have their dangerous blind spots, and confirmation bias can lead to disaster. one has to always consider that maybe we're the baddies. and so maybe i'm the baddie right here right now, trying to do the right thing but failing.

anyway here's the paul krugman newsletter on "cancel culture" from this week: https://static.nytimes.com/email-content/PK_sample.html

(the sample changes each tuesday).

ok see you🖖

--

oh, a lot was added since then...

ps that laughing emoji up there is no mockery, i'm laughing at my own absurdity. k.

Hristo Botev
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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Hristo Botev »

Alphaville: I want to give your post the thoughtful response it deserves, but it’s too late and my day tomorrow is too busy. So, in the meantime, I’ll drop a quick note from my phone to say: (1) I really appreciated your post, and it means a lot that you took so much time and put so much thought into writing it; (2) I always appreciate your posts on my journal, and you can always assume that when I say you can hijack my journal anytime, I’m being sincere (and I reserve my “fuck offs” for Bezos and Zuckerberg); (3) I really wish you’d start a journal, you’ve been a bit of an enigma and it’d be a bit easier to engage with you if I knew more about where you’re coming from (I’ve been kind of an open book), like what you’ve provided in the post above; and (4) you can rest assured that there is no way in Hell I’m going to waste a second reading anything written by Krugman.

I’d end with an emoji but I really had no idea those things could be such minefields. FWIW, I’ve always interpreted your use of them as a way of letting me know your comments are good natured and meant to be taken as light hearted.

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Hristo Botev »

Alphaville wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 5:48 pm
one has to always consider that maybe we're the baddies. and so maybe i'm the baddie right here right now, trying to do the right thing but failing.
Also wanted to add, in response to this, that you really can understand a lot about my worldview by my Catholic faith; I really am that Catholic, and so I take it as a given of human nature that we are all the baddies, me most of all, and AT OUR BEST we are trying to do the right thing but failing.

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Alphaville »

Hristo Botev wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 8:42 pm
(4) you can rest assured that there is no way in Hell I’m going to waste a second reading anything written by Krugman.
haha but why!? agree or disagree with him he’s a serious intellect worthy of one’s attention... unlike joe f. rogan :lol:

anyway good to know about the rest, although at some point i felt things were going sideways. productive problem solving is where energy is worth spending.

for that reason too i have little motivation to create the narrative of a self in a journal—i’m not interested in “me” and it doesn’t help (“me”) solve problems. rather, i start threads in the form of questions that need answers (or add to existing ones).

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Hristo Botev »

Fun with bartering:
Image
1 Liter of good bourbon from a musician acquaintance in exchange for some "free" music licensing legal advice; I think I got the better end of this bargain, as copyright law really isn't that mysterious. That said, he thinks he got the better end of the bargain. That's win-win.

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Hristo Botev »

Alphaville wrote:
Thu Sep 24, 2020 8:20 am
haha but why!? agree or disagree with him he’s a serious intellect worthy of one’s attention... unlike joe f. rogan :lol:

anyway good to know about the rest, although at some point i felt things were going sideways. productive problem solving is where energy is worth spending.

for that reason too i have little motivation to create the narrative of a self in a journal—i’m not interested in “me” and it doesn’t help (“me”) solve problems. rather, i start threads in the form of questions that need answers (or add to existing ones).
This is starting to get a bit exhausting. I really am trying to close the loop on this.

A typical (or perhaps stereotypical) anecdote: DW used to (and sometimes still does) get annoyed when, at the end of the day, she downloads on me all her frustrations from the day, over a cocktail, and I immediately jump to trying to solve all the problems I've spotted from her download, or to "challenge" her reactions to certain perceived affronts. You see, that's not the point of her download, as I've learned in 15 years of marriage. Even though I think that I'm "willing the good of the other" by helping solve problems and challenging assumptions, reactions, etc., I'm not. DW is of course perfectly capable of solving her own problems (she's several WLs ahead of me, in that regard), and when she's not, she makes it clear that she's asking for advice/help from me. That's kind of the point of my journal, as IRL, I'm not really one to burden others with my frustrations and vents; this journal is my own forum for downloading where I'm at and where I'm going on my ERE journey, including my frustrations of all sorts. In my journal I'm not looking for problems to be solved; I post topics elsewhere in this forum when I'm looking for that (e.g., is cast iron worth it?). And I definitely think it's "worth spending" energy on things other than "productive problem solving." I don't view life as a series of problems that need to be solved, and questions that need answers. I've no objection to you feeling the need to "challenge" the frustrations I vent on my journal--by asking your devil's advocate "who're really the baddies" questions--but when you do, don't be surprised if things sometimes go "sideways." And if that sideways makes you uncomfortable, well, no one is forcing you to read and comment on my journal; it's a really big forum, with lots of topics and lots of journals.

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Alphaville »

Hristo Botev wrote:
Thu Sep 24, 2020 10:38 am
This is starting to get a bit exhausting. I really am trying to close the loop on this.

[...]
I don't view life as a series of problems that need to be solved, and questions that need answers. I've no objection to you feeling the need to "challenge" the frustrations I vent on my journal--by asking your devil's advocate "who're really the baddies" questions--but when you do, don't be surprised if things sometimes go "sideways." And if that sideways makes you uncomfortable, well, no one is forcing you to read and comment on my journal; it's a really big forum, with lots of topics and lots of journals.
aaaaaaaah ha ha ok, i finally understand it did actually mean “fuck off” :D

and i appreciate the clarity now, thanks. we were indeed talking at cross purposes. i don’t see life as problems to be solved either—it’s just how i use a public forum. my “life” and personal issues are elsewhere.

and no worries, it’s not about discomfort, but rather good use of time and keeping a good climate for others, that i prefer not to engage with that sort of emotional situation. i’ll cease & desist from reading & interjecting now.

be well/take care!

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Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by Hristo Botev »

Something I need to keep in mind as we try and keep our spending down and move away from a consumerism mindset: There's a lot of stuff that I think of as "cheap thrills" that are no longer (and perhaps never were) either cheap or particularly thrilling. Example: Monday after work/school the family opted to enjoy this fantastic fall weather we've been having by taking a long, after-dinner walk to the downtown square and back. It was really wonderful--we saw lots of folks we know along the way, and we had some truly quality family time, catching up on everyone's lives. Once we made it to the square, the kids asked if we could grab some ice cream, which seemed like a really perfect idea. We've got several ice cream shops downtown, and of course we chose the locally-owned independent one that hires local high school kids to work the counter. DW and DD masked up and went into the shop, while me and DS and the dog waited on a bench outside on the sidewalk. The ice cream was of course good, but you know, it's just ice cream. Tuesday morning I checked the credit card balance online, and it turned out that little stop at the ice cream shop cost $30!; for 4 ice creams and a tip (B/c of course we have to now tip the kid 20% or whatever for scooping the ice cream.) Anyway, my point is that ice cream is a nice treat; but it seems like a side-effect of this whole craft/artisan foods/drinks movement is that stuff that used to be pretty cheap (I mean, how much was an ice cream sandwich from the ice cream truck, back in the day?), is now far from being so. E.g., we've got these competing "artisan" popsicle outfits that sell their popsicles at the square for $3+; for a popsicle! And of course a 6-pack of beer can now cost well over $10 (which prompted my entry into homebrewing). The realization that DW and I came to? We'll always pay a premium to purchase things we need/want from local retail, when that's an option; but we're limiting those "things" to durable goods, like books, records, jewelry (for those special occasions); or to things like non-"treat" grocery items. We can make ice cream at home (DS had that realization on his own, unprompted, because he's enjoyed brewing beer with me but of course doesn't like that he can't try it.) And I'm now long past the headspace of thinking that going to a restaurant is at all enjoyable.

anesde
Posts: 165
Joined: Wed Jan 09, 2019 8:32 am

Re: Hristo's FI Journal

Post by anesde »

I felt the same thing over the past few years - I think it’s the disconnect between the value you assign something vs. the price, along with what you were really searching for vs. what you got.

What you really were after was some nice fun quality time with the family enjoying a delicious treat. You’ve done it enough times at a much reduced cost/free (at home, at a family members home, etc) that it just feels “off” to pay for it, especially when that same $30 could be used for something else that’s better aligned to personal value/price.

For me what’s interesting is it’s such a stark way of looking at things that after I started, it became really hard for me to understand when others don’t do this. I don’t “get” paying obscene amounts of money for things that are inherently really inexpensive. I guess others put more value on the appearance or ambiance of whatever is selling the product but I personally don’t ascribe any value to that at all so it’s hard to understand.

That happened to me a lot when I was younger and tried to enjoy nightlife in NYC. I couldn’t fathom paying crazy amounts of money to get bottle service, or even slightly less crazy amounts of money to get into the clubs in general. I used to ask my friends what they were really after that they couldn’t get elsewhere at much more reasonable prices. We clearly didn’t align in this :-D

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