To me, the meaning and charm of life is the chance for possibilities to exist, and the expression of beauty. The most difficult and transformative part is learning to cope.
I'm somewhat of an optimist, although much of that comes from realizing how much we can survive and grow from.
If you write stories or play music, talk to me--I'd love to discuss and maybe even collaborate.
I've learned that creativity is a needed part of my life, for my own mental health. When I make art, a part of me feels a little like I'm communing with the cosmos, and if I neglect that need for too long, it leads to an existential despair.
When making art, it's a give-and-take process; where I'm at in a project informs how I approach the rest of it. I feel like most of life is that way, but practicing any creative art will teach you that. I like limiting my options through structured work (e.g., the villanelle or fugue) because it both challenges and directs me.
I think what people do and say informs the rest of who they are as a persona. As consequence, I listen very closely to myself and others. I also like looking through people's profiles: it's a little like people-watching (I mean that in as not a creepy way as possible!).
I've learned that I'm not my thoughts, I'm what's left when my mind is no longer thinking--just the thing directing mental perception. Saying this probably commits me to an awkward position as far as the contemporary views on mind go, but I think there's still some sense to it.
I love everybody and everything, and really appreciate all of them, even if at times they make me sort of sad. This isn't to say that I am in love with everybody; this is an agape sort of relation, not an eros kind of thing, if you will. There isn't enough love and honesty in the world, so I guess I try to make up for it some.
I think that you understand people best through inquiry, so I'll play some "would you rather questions" with myself:
1. Would I rather be a dream or a fantasy?
I'd rather be a dream because dreams are honest, even when they're deceptive. They are unique, and even when they're terrifying, they're something beautiful, and more like life than waking moments.
2. Would I rather be a chair or a table?
I say chair, because while they can function as a table if you really need them to, they're moreso intended to support people, not things. Likewise, I see people as important, and stuff as merely transient matter.
3. Would I rather, when I die, reincarnate into a new form of life, be stranded as a ghost, or enter into something like heaven?
I think I'd rather be a ghost because I like my mind, my individuality. However, I think the truth of this is that I will cease to exist in this form, and be reabsorbed into a singular perception and experiences of itself and everything; I am a wave, and I will slowly fall back to the same level as the rest of the sea and become part of the ocean again.
4. Would I rather be a magnet that pushes things away or one that pulls things close (physics aside)?
One that pushes things away. I like space.
Either way, hopefully this gave you a bit of insight into my character. I may or may not expand on this later (as of 6/14/09).
If I could just indulge in my hobbies and be paid for it, that would be wonderful, but I'm somewhat doubtful that would ever happen. If you're curious what those are, see below...
That said, I'm currently working as a Financial Aid Advisor within the DCCCD. I just started recently, and while it's not the love-of-my-life kind of job, it lets me support myself.
I'm starting an online master's program in the Fall of '13. I guess that's new. :D (6/29/2013).
... aaaand I'm finished. (7/24/2015)
OK, more seriously: I don't really consider myself to be "good" at anything; I have high standards for myself, less so for others. I've spent a lot of time learning and loving different crafts, though. To name a few...
Music: I've been playing piano off and on since about third grade, and for a while I was tossing around the idea of actually going into music performance. Then, due to some rather odd realizations (I will explain if you ask), I decided for about half a year that musicians were weak individuals, and I gave up on it for a time. Even still, I minored in music and have started playing piano again, working on a Busoni transcription of Bach's Tocatta and Fugue in D minor and my favorite parts of Pictures at an Exhibition (by Mussorgsky). It's a shame that you can't play metal on the piano. :(
Here's a link to something I recorded for my niece and nephew a while ago: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GA3c860WcSI
Writing: I write poetry and prose (but mostly poetry). Storytelling is beautiful. I like subverting form, yet keeping archetypes intact, and drawing out meaningful second-subjects in the process. That said, I'm still learning, but I'll probably continue doing this all of my life.
Here's a super short poem I wrote several years back (because I like sharing):
A sickle voice cuts slowest
-- I tumble like grain;
as the leaves that hang lowest
when summer dies to fall.
Conceptual Analysis: I'm pretty good at swimming through ideas and seeing how things link together. (1/28/2011)
Patience and Listening: I have a lot of patience, especially for people I don't really know. I actively listen to them, draw them out, ask them questions, and really investigate into what they're thinking and feeling. People are fascinating.
Typing: I can type between 100-110 words per minute without error. I realize that there are a lot of people that type faster than this, but I think that it's still pretty quick.
Well, a while ago, I shaved only the right half of my face, so I would've figured that they would've noticed that -- interestingly, though, people didn't usually make any signs that they noticed my quasi-beard. Maybe they just didn't accept it as part of their reality.
I'm somewhat tall, and will dwarf a fair number of people. But, when compared to my friend Justin, who is 6'8" and also graduated from UTA with a philosophy degree, I'm merely bigger than fun-size. Whenever he and I hang out, we talk philosophy, and with our combined philosophical jargon and towering physiques, we make people feel reaaaaaaaally tiny and inconsequential in the grand scheme of things.
That being the case, I'm afraid that I come across as intimidating and creepy, so I overcompensate; I try to compact myself and make myself look smaller than I actually am, shift my voice and stance so I'm more inviting.
Books: The Road (Cormac McCarthy), The Count of Monte Cristo (Dumas), King Rat (Mieville), Philosophical Investigations (Wittgenstein), The Sandman Series (Gaiman), The Hobbit (NOT Lord of the Rings) (Tolkein), Tao Te Ching (Lao Tzu, particularly the Ron Hogan translation--which is hilarious), Ishmael (Quinn).
Movies: The Dark Knight, Unforgiven, The Good the Bad and the Ugly, The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra, Old Boy, Pontypool.
Anime: Full Metal Alchemist, Mushi-shi, Gankutsuou, Cowboy Bebop.
Games: Metal Gear Solid I, II, and III; Smash Bros. Brawl; Final Fantasy VII; Chrono Trigger; League of Legends, Smite.
Music: Baroque, Classical (as in the catch-all phrase; basically neo-classical, post-modern, and everything before that -- such a misunderstood genre) Metal, stuff from OCRemix, Electronic, Bebop, Post-bop (a la, Miles Davis).
Composers and Artists: Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Scriabin, Heidevolk, Mastodon, Iron Maiden, Tool, The Wingless, Children of the Monkey Machine, ziwtra, rushjet1, Game Over, The Protomen, Plaid, Miles Davis, Bud Powell, John Doyle. And more recently: MF Doom (AKA DOOM), Danger Mouse, Aesop Rock, Cunninlynguists.
Writers: Leonard Cohen, Anton Chekhov, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, ee cummings, Dylan Thomas (really, I just like his villanelle), Sherman Alexie, Plato, Cormac McCarthy.
Artists: Magritte, Dave McKean, Frida Kahlo.
Food: Curries, soups, and stews; good spinach; spicy things; sweet things; non-salad-y type items.
See? Even with an incomplete list, common ground is definitely a possibility between myself and others!
I ask myself this question over and over again.
I spend a lot of time being self-aware and mindful; I observe myself constantly. I listen closely and carefully.
Recently (9/26/09), I've been thinking about how I don't let people in because I don't trust them, how I'm alone even when I'm with other people (and am okay with that), and how at times (if I'm not careful), I can come off as a cold, insensitive, unemotional bastard. However, the assessment of me being unemotional is untrue; I'm very emotional, and while I look to how I feel for guidance, I always meet it with an equal measure of reason. However, the only thing I share with people is the reason part of things.
I can assure you that I am not an octopus on any Friday, nor am I a prickly pear, a system of beliefs, nor the set of all sets that do not contain themselves.
I am also not you because if I were you, your perspective would become my perspective, and I would simply be a different me. Not that I'm saying we should try that or anything--I like me.
edited: for grammar 1/8/2013, although I suppose grammar is option.
I get hit by moods of anti-humanism, once in a great while. In one such mood, I've (maybe twice at most) fantasized cuddling and being in love with an oversized iguana lizard. I was safe and comfortable, and I felt like our agapic (if you will) love was more sincere than could ever occur between two humans.
While that is true, I think it's important that we're clear about something: I am sexually interested in people, not lizards. I figure you guys know this, but it's worth stating.
I secretly think I say some pretty clever things, although I think they're usually only funny to me. However, I say 'em anyway because I like enjoying my own company.
Edit, 11/23/2010: Also, my mind has a tendency to wander while I'm making out--it does not shut off.
Do note, if you're interested in anything physical with me, you must be okay with an open relationship. This isn't because I want copious amounts of sex with multiple men or women; it's because I like to love others freely and act however makes sense with them. I feel like I can't be honest with others when I'm in monogamous relationships. I'm just happier. Please respect that.