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Lakeshore
An author of no particular popularity

Jay Lake
Date: 2008-01-24 06:58
Subject: [links] Link salad for a Thursday
Security: Public
Location:Nuevo Rancho Lake
Mood:busy
Music:not much
Tags:funny, links, personal, science, work
The lab route to out of body experiences — I've had two full blown OBEs in my life, under different circumstances. One was an obvious case of self-hypnosis, the other was in connection with a traumatic closed head injury. I've had one "touched by God" moment, which is pretty weird since that happened long after I'd abandoned any pretense of faith. I wrote it off at the time as a sort of emotional fit. Them temporal lobes are pretty interesting things. (Thanks to chriswjohnson.)

NASA Administrator Mike Griffin's Remarks to the Space Transportation Association (with audio) — As chriswjohnson said when he sent me the link, "[This] strikes me as a remarkably detailed and substantive public presentation for the head of a government agency. (Ordinarily, I'd expect sound-bite-oriented material and maximum vagueness from the public statements of someone in such a position.)"

Dilbert on assigning blame — I've actually had almost this exact conversation, at a job years ago. I had argued strongly against a course of action, was finally told point blank to shut up or I'd be fired. The problems I predicted came through in spades. I was called in to management and grilled about why I hadn't tried harder to show them why the project was going to fail so badly.

The meaning of 0 and 100 on the Fahrenheit scale
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biomekanic
User: biomekanic
Date: 2008-01-24 15:38 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
re Dilbert:
Yeah, in spades. "If we don't do X, Y will happen in six month, and we'll wind up paying three times as much."
Six months later...
"Why wasn't this dealt with before?!?"

Some days, it's really, really hard to be a Quaker.
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(no subject) - (Anonymous)
User: joycemocha
Date: 2008-01-25 03:06 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
My OBE times have come either when I was playing around with meditative techniques without guidance, or experiencing a toxic reaction to allergy meds. In both cases, I did a number on my brain for a while in junior high and high school--and this was all with perfectly legal stuff, man. At least with mind-altering substances you can always tell yourself it's the drugs. But when you've been playing with meditation techniques--um, well, not so easy.

OTOH, if I want out of body experiences, all I need to do is take some Afrin, or 4-Way Cold Spray, Chlorotrimton or Actifed. Not fun, though. Quite unpleasant, to be honest.
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(no subject) - (Anonymous)
Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2008-01-25 03:13 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
That's pretty much what happened to me on my other OBE. I fell into a white wall during 11th grade trig class, and subjectively felt like I damned near didn't make it back out again. Fascinating, and profoundly frightening -- opened a door in my head I didn't know was there.
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Renee Babcock: Star doily
User: renegade500
Date: 2008-01-24 16:22 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Star doily
I don't care what number you give it, it's still really cold out!
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russ: watchmen
User: goulo
Date: 2008-01-24 17:06 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:watchmen
My old comic on assigning blame:
http://www.kofightclub.com/d/20010716.html
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Elf M. Sternberg
User: elfs
Date: 2008-01-24 17:07 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Regarding Dilbert (who I normally assume is a tool of management and I'd much rather read XKCD), I have completely and utterly been there. "It'll take nine months." "I can have the graphics done in six, but the underlying infrastructure will take nine." "Great, then you've got six months."

Six months later: "The graphics look great, but the networking layer doesn't do anything." "It's not done." "But you said you could get it done in six." "It is done, but the infrastructure's not." "Why didn't you say it wouldn't actually work by deadline?" "I did!"
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daveraines
User: daveraines
Date: 2008-01-25 00:10 (UTC)
Subject: Touched by God moment
Okay, at the risk of being a pain: what's a "touched by God moment"?
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2008-01-25 02:00 (UTC)
Subject: Re: Touched by God moment
Not being a pain, sir. Not at all.

I was on top of a mountain in northern Arizona, somewhere outside Flagstaff. I was almost 19 years old. It was early in the morning on one of those days when the air is so clear that from an altitude it seems as if you can see to the curve of the planet. A great vista of high desert in the spring, cold and magnificent.

In that moment I was overtaken by a profound sense of awe, of connectedness, of being part of the world and the world being part of me. It was like being enveloped in a loving hand the size of all of life.

I took the moment for what it was — a blivet in my temporal lobes — and went on with my day, but if I were of a more spiritual framework, it would have been very tempting to interpret that moment as the touch of the divine.
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daveraines
User: daveraines
Date: 2008-01-25 06:24 (UTC)
Subject: Re: Touched by God moment
a blivet in my temporal lobes ... the touch of the divine....

Or both simultaneously. One of the things that fascinates me about faith and, well, unfaith is that we can share similar experiences but name them very differently.
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2008-01-25 13:11 (UTC)
Subject: Re: Touched by God moment
It's all about the framework, the internal narrative.
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