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Lakeshore
An author of no particular popularity

Jay Lake
Date: 2010-11-18 04:31
Subject: [links] Link salad coins a phrase
Security: Public
Tags:audio, books, culture, language, links, media, musc, personal, politics, religion, science, stories
Cascade Writers Workshop is now open for registration [ jlake.com | LiveJournal ] — If you're interested in working with me, David Levine and Beth Meacham next summer, here's your chance. Plus, how can you go wrong with a long weekend out on Washington's Olympic Peninsula?

Language Log with more on the recent Jane Austen arguments

The B-side of Steve Jobs — Apple and the Beatles.

Other generations growing weary of Baby Boomers — Speaking as someone too young for Boomerhood and too old for Gen X, I'm weary of this whole generational dialectic.

How do you really know what time it is?io.9 on the brain and time. I found this fascinating, because some of the assertions cited from neuroscience researchers don't seem to apply to me. For example, the idea that the human brain is poor at assessing the objective passage of time. If I'm rested and not ill (ie, not on chemo), I almost always know what time it is to within 15 minutes, whether or not I have recent access to a clock. I can also tell myself when to wake up, and this will work almost all the time, again, even if I cannot see a clock from where I am sleeping. Interesting read.

Louisiana Citizens Horrified that there's Evolution in Science Books — And yet somehow we have survived into the 21st century as an industrialized democracy. Why are we as a nation even having these conversations? We might as well be horrified that the Earth is not the center of the solar system.

That's the Story? — Sigh. Anatomy of another of the endless parade of Republican lies that are reported without analysis or rebuttal in Your Liberal Media. With, you know, actual cites and facts and stuff, in case you think this is just more liberal bias.

?otD: Heads or tails?




11/18/2010
Writing time yesterday: 3.0 hours (7,800 new words on Kalimpura, to 77,400)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Hours slept: 5.5 hours (interrupted)
This morning's weigh-in: 248.2 (!)
Yesterday's chemo/post-op stress index: 2/10 (fatigue, peripheral neuropathy, emotional distress)
Currently reading: Act of Will by A.J. Hartley

Post A Comment | 17 Comments | | Flag | Link






dionysus1999
User: dionysus1999
Date: 2010-11-18 13:47 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Underestimating our President seems to come easy to the Republican leadership. Guess they were used to G.W, the president with terminal "foot in mouth" disease.

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S-47/19-J
User: shsilver
Date: 2010-11-18 13:55 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
We might as well be horrified that the Earth is not the center of the solar system.

Funny you should say this...Just two weeks ago in South Bend, Indiana, the Galileo Was Wrong conference was held in which some of the greatest thinkers of the fourteenth century gathered to discuss why Galileo was wrong about the Earth not being the center of the universe. (Not sure why they didn't call it "Copernicus Was Wrong").
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(no subject) - (Anonymous)
S-47/19-J
User: shsilver
Date: 2010-11-18 18:36 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Giordano Bruni might beg to differ.
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Nathan
User: mastadge
Date: 2010-11-18 14:18 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Heads!

Is Act of Will good?
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2010-11-18 14:54 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I'm enjoying Act of Will quite a bit, but I'm not yet sure if I like it. If that makes any sense at all.

In an odd way, it has a lot in common with the movie Shakespeare In Love - modern characters doing modern things with modern dialog in a fairly intensive (faux-)Elizabethan setting.

I think I shall have to post a review when I am done.
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cathshaffer
User: cathshaffer
Date: 2010-11-18 14:19 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
The generation dialectic certainly breaks down and even seems done as used in an article like that one. Are Baby Boomers "self-centered?" "Altruistic?" "Selfish?" All of that is stupid because you are talking about individual people with individual personalities. As a group, they do not have any one personality.

However, you can talk about the effect of the baby boom on subsequent generations, and in that sense, I think it is very true that baby boomers have "sucked up a lot of cultural oxygen." With the recession, having an excess of people between 50 and 65 is very stultifying on the job market and in the work place. Companies have downsized, and the senior-level, leadership-type jobs that people that age are looking for don't exist. And yet you are not going to hire someone for an entry-level or junior position who is seven years from retirement. So Boomers are competing hard for those upper-level jobs, and it completely squeezes out someone who is, say, forty, and really ready to move up. This may be one reason why promotion within an organization is nonexistent. There is simply too much competition from all sides. I remember being told there would be a lot of jobs for people my age because there were relatively few babies born at that time. But that metric forgot to take into account the effect of all of those millions of baby boomers holding on until the last gasp of retirement. We won't see that bump until 2015. Then things are going to get really weird.

I also agree that Boomers are working from an older rulebook. I think people born in the 60's and later have a different culture--much more egalitarian, less sexist, less racist, more fair, more casual, and much more sexually open than the free-est of the free-love hippies could have imagined. The Boomers helped to make that happen. They raised us that way. But ultimately they are bound by the culture *they* came up in, which is very much old-boys' network, more formal, class-based, and with a great deal of unexamined sexism and racism (in spite of activism to the contrary).
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2010-11-18 14:55 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I think people born in the 60's and later have a different culture

Yes, this. And I feel like a straddler here between those cultures.
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scarlettina
User: scarlettina
Date: 2010-11-18 15:49 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
You're describing Generation Jones. We're here. No one's paying attention, though.
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Jim Hetley
User: jhetley
Date: 2010-11-18 15:16 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Heads. Heads. Heads . . .
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scarlettina: Are we there yet?
User: scarlettina
Date: 2010-11-18 15:47 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Are we there yet?
...too young for Boomerhood and too old for Gen X...: That's because like me, you're Generation Jones, the generation nobody talks about. It's irritating.
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Kenneth Mark Hoover
User: kmarkhoover
Date: 2010-11-18 15:49 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I can't help but wonder if the RepubliKan Zombies and RNC echo-chamber MSM stenographers would say a white president "crashed" a political retreat.

Methinks not.

Hey, let's be grateful the sonsofbitches didn't describe it as a "drive by."
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russ: lyles constant
User: goulo
Date: 2010-11-18 16:17 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:lyles constant
I liked this comment at the article about the creationists:

"If we are going to teach 'creation science' as an alternative to evolution, then we should also teach the stork theory as an alternative to biological reproduction" - Judith Hayes

---

Re: Beatles on iTunes, this article makes a good point about the iTunes "buy an individual song" model being inappropriate for the Beatles (and many other groups):

http://www.theatlantic.com/culture/archive/2010/11/the-beatles-on-itunes-means-your-kids-may-never-hear-her-majesty/66647/

Edited at 2010-11-18 04:27 pm (UTC)
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Keffy
User: kehrli
Date: 2010-11-18 18:17 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
My experience with the generation thing is that I'm either 5 years or "just barely" to young to count as Gen X, but too old to count as whatever the next group is*. No matter what the "marker" is, I straddle the line. I am also annoyed when people tell me that the first "important political event" in my life is supposed to be 9-11... I vaguely remember the Berlin Wall coming down and I definitely remember the Gulf War.

As far as I can tell, the generation myth exists so that old people can tell young people that they suck for (insert reason here) and that nobody will ever be as inherently awesome as the "greatest" generation, since they managed to not starve during the Great Depression and fought Nazis, which clearly means they had no flaws whatsoever.
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User: mmegaera
Date: 2010-11-19 01:22 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:reading
Speaking as someone too young for Boomerhood and too old for Gen X, I'm weary of this whole generational dialectic.

A-MEN.

[born in 1959]
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jetse
User: jetse
Date: 2010-11-19 20:54 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
As to the Baby-Boomer, Gen-Jones, Gen-X division:

Born in 1963, I never felt like a baby boomer, but not like a Gen-Xer either. Not even sure about the Generation Jones.

Possibly a European perspective counts: to me, the Fall of the Berlin Wall was a major, major event.

I grew up in the late 70s, early 80s when the Cold War was -- again, since the Cuban crisis during my birth year -- threatening to turn hot.

Living in The Netherlands -- within a few hundred miles of the Iron Curtain -- my nightmares were about Nuclear War. I vividly remember thinking that if World War 3 broke loose in Europe, I'd prefer to be hit by a nuclear warhead *directly* rather than suffer through the inevitable nuclear winter after it (a more humane death: there's a reason we Dutch are -- or at least used to be -- in favour of euthanasia: in some cases a quick death is preferable over pointless suffering).

My father died, unexpectedly, in Moscow, from an aneurism, on April 1985. Apart from the fact that his death affected me deeply, some things made it even more frustrating in the following years.

1) I graduated from my Master's (which I think is the American equivalent) in Engineering just two months after his death. My father worked very hard to make sure his children could both do the education they wanted (and which matched their interest and intelligence), and do so debt-free.

So while I did finish my Master's in Engineering (with an average score of 9: In Holland the scale is from 0 to 10: this would be exactly between B+ and A- if I understand the American system correctly), the second best of that year of the complete school.

I sincerely regretted my father not being able to see this: it was just two months after his death (don't ask me how I went through these exams just after his death: sheer persistence).

2) The Fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989: my father had worked in countries across the world, including those behind the Iron Curtain. While he didn't believe in capitalism, he also thought communism -- which he had experienced in several Eastern European countries and in the Soviet Union itself, where he died -- wasn't the answer. He hated, hated, hated the Cold War. I got science fiction through my father: he let me read *everything*, as a young teenager, never limiting my reading in any way.

Especially Philip K Dick made a huge impression, and when the Wall came down the relief I felt was so immense, so wonderful: it was liberating to the extreme.

The world was *not* going to end in total nuclear war: those tens of thousands of nuclear warheads were not going to be launched. And that possibly defines my generation: compared to the threat of imminent nuclear annihilation, Global Warming feels like a tea time distration. Not that it's not a huge problem, but much less imminently threatening than nuclear Armageddon. Something we can tackle, something we can turn around (Alert: SHINE editor speaking...;-).

I was immensely relieved when the Iron Curtain fell, but also deeply saddened that my father hadn't lived to see the day (he would have only been 53!).

3) The end of Apartheid: my father had worked in South Africa, as well. He had experienced apartheid up close and personal. Obviously, like me, he was a white man. But he was immensely appalled by the treatment black people received in South Africa in those days. So much that he became *physically* ill. He literally couldn't stand it. Our family were staunch anti-Apartheid ('apartheid': the most famous Dutch word in the world: I am still ashamed of that) ever since. A typical pointer of the late 80s in Holland being Ruud Gullit -- world-famous football player -- dedicating his 1987 "European Footballer of the Year" award to Nelson Mandela.

So when Madela was freed in 1991, and Apartheid ended, I was both happy and sad: happy for the end of apartheid, sad that my father wasn't there to experience it (he would have been only 55!).

(CUT OFF BECAUSE OF MAXIMUM COMMENT LENGTH: SEE NEXT COMMENT)

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jetse
User: jetse
Date: 2010-11-19 20:55 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
(CONTINUED FROM COMMENT ABOVE)

Maybe that's also a different point: I didn't hate my parents (my mother is still alive and well), I didn't need to rebel against them, like probably a lot of baby boomers did.

I grew up on a cultural diet of science fiction and heavy metal: heavy metal helped you *cope* with those horrible Reagan/Thatcher years, it got the frustrations out of your system. Bands like Judas Priest and (early) Metallica both understood your frustration and your thoughts of suicide, but then told you *not* to do it (and, by implication, pave your won future). Science fiction -- the good stuff -- was like tha, as well: it understood your frustrations, depicted them, but also tried to show you the way *out* of your problems, tried to inspire you.

So when people see my long-haired face, they often wonder if I'm an old hippie. I tell them I'm an old metalhead that wants to live forever in a science-fictional golden age. Those who don't understand must buy me beer...;-)
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jetse
User: jetse
Date: 2010-11-19 20:57 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I meant "pave your *own* future", above.

And "was like *that*".

And "must buy *me* a beer."

Typos, typos: I probably need beer...;-)
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