Friday, May 22, 2015

They still can't predict Illinois weather


So I got up last Sunday determined to go for a run since I hadn't run in about a week. It was overcast as I was getting ready so I checked the weather online. A big red warning bar greeted me.  Eighty percent change of strong thunderstorms with heavy rain. It was claimed they would hit later in the morning. I clicked on the radar and only saw a tiny shower hundreds of miles away.  It's not like I was running a marathon. I'd be back in a half hour. I ran then did the post run stuff: shower, eat a bit.  It was about the time the storms were supposed to hit so I checked the weather again.  The heavy storm warning was gone. It now claimed a hundred percent chance of rain that should come about noon. So noon rolled around and there still wasn't any rain. Now the weather site listed a fifty percent change of rain about two pm.  Two pm came around an I had to go somewhere so I checked again.  Now it said a twenty percent chance of some showers around eight pm.

It never did rain. Not a drop.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

More examples of "loser" attitude

On the very tails of writing Two Kinds of People, I found a blog post  that re-enforced some of the things I wrote about. I am not going to give a link or name a name since I don't want to embarrass that person.

LOSERS by flickr user Herbalizer

We can be both kinds of people

I would describe the blogs author as a winner.  A person who has made their own life. I've followed them online for years.  Over ten years ago they decided to make a new life.  They changed careers and found happiness and fulfillment through willful choice.  And yet here was this person that I saw as an inspiration writing a whiny loser post. So even a person who has been the model of living with intention can wallow in self pity and defeatism. I am convinced that if they were to continue in this attitude it would drag them down to more negativity. Knowing them I assume that they will begin being positive again.

Luck is a loser word

I tweeted out recently "Luck" A loser word, losers use when other people win. Luck is a word I almost never read in this person's vocabulary, and yet here it was four times in one post. Luck seems to rarely be a word used by "winners"  (Note: as you can tell I am struggling with what terminology to use to describe these two types of people) even when talking about things not within their control. You are not lucky or unlucky as to who your parents were. "I am glad I had such good parents", or "my upbringing wasn't the best but I have gotten to were I am." Winners don't view life circumstances as lucky or unlucky. Things you can't control are seen simply as the things that are. If it's positive it is seen as an opportunity to be taken advantage of. If it's negative it is seen as a circumstance to overcome. There is quite a bit of wisdom in the common American sports phrase "It is what it is." A ref makes a bad call that affects the game?  It is what it is.  You deal and move on.

Losers are self obsessed and see other people's success as an indictment

I touched on this in the previous posts.  I think the best way to explain it is with an example. You are single and you see a happy couple. Seeing that couple makes you feel miserable. You might even see their existence as a commentary on your own failures. As if someone else's happiness is about you. What are they suddenly supposed to be miserable so your self obsessed self can feel marginally better.  Which you wouldn't because it is not about them. It is about you. If they didn't even exist you would feel the shame or the guilt because that is within you. I see this often. The idea that someone else's success is a commentary on you as a failure. Trust me that person succeeding isn't even thinking about you.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Why my Mom is perfect

Roses for Mom


By some external measures of perfection my Mom would not fit the bill.  She did not stay at home all the time in an apron cooking brownies. We didn't live in a mansion or have everything we wanted. What I did have was love.  Through good and bad times, and even the time I mighty have been annoyed, I knew she loved me. I knew that she wanted the best for me. Without her being how she was I would not be who I am. Therefore she was perfect.



Sunday, May 03, 2015

Doing the windows update dance

You would probably think I would post something techy on my tech blog: www.tech-surge.com, but after reading this I am sure most people will understand. On that blog, I am pretending I know things about technology  This makes me look like a dunderhead. I should be the head of the IT department for Reynholm Industries.

 

I built my desktop computer three or so years ago.  Since I planned to use it to play games I put 8 Gigs of memory in it thinking that would be better than four. About a year or so ago I started having random crashes and problems. I tracked it down to one of the sticks of ram being bad so I took it out.  Now I was running on only 4 gigs. I noticed some slowness, but put up with it since I didn't want to spend any money.

Recently I got the whim to stream some of my gaming over the internet. Twitch.tv,  the site I am streaming through, recommends 8 gigs of memory minimal to stream.  I tried it with only 4 and it sorta worked but the game lagged a lot.  I bit the bullet went online and ordered 8 more gigs of memory.

A few days later it showed up and I installed it.  I didn't notice any increased performance from my computer.  It seemed exactly the same.  I started checking things and my computer said it had 12 gigs installed but only 2.9 usable.  SCREEECH  Now anybody who knows anything about computers knows exactly what is going on here. I instantly assumed what the problem was but I thought there was no way I could be that stupid. I spent about 15 minutes trouble shooting things and then realized I had to check the obvious problem.  With a shaking hand I clicked on the start menu and then right clicked on the Computer link in the menu.  I clicked properties and  up popped a very helpful list of basic information about my computer. Obviously it said System Type:  32-bit Operating System.  Yes I was that stupid.  For the non technical people reading this(the technical people are too busy laughing) a 32 bit operating system can use a maximum of 4 gigs of memory. Those two years I had 8 gigs of memory I wasn't using half of it. Somehow I screwed up and installed the 32 bit version.

So I've spent yesterday installing a 64 bit version of windows and spending hours installing updates and rebooting.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

There are two types of people

Finally posting this incoherent post because I am tired of looking at it in my drafts

Recently, I sat through a meeting I didn't really want to be at. I noticed that the person who required me to be there wasn't attending the meeting. When I asked where they were I was told they were on a skiing vacation in Europe. I thought, "that's a nice life if you can get it."  There are two different roads I could go down after that comment.  And two different types of people that will take one of those two roads. I could be resentful of their life and think about how lucky they were, or I could take a positive attitude and see their life as an accomplishment.  I could have given blame or praise to external things and not individual agency. If I thought this way I would not be taking personal responsibility for my life while not giving them personal credit for theirs.

We encounter these two types of people often: those who think life happens to them and those who think they create the life they have.  From my experience the later tend to be more successful and happier. There are all sorts of platitudes about this phenomenon.  You can make complaints or you can make changes. Is the glass half empty or half full? People who let themselves be defined by their circumstances and people who make the best of every situation.

Telling the two apart

We can tell a lot about the attitude a person has by they language they use and their reactions to events. Do they complain a lot? Do they consider other people's success as a threat or a commentary on their own failures. They use entitled language and talk about how they deserve things. For example: If a friend wins something the response will be one of negativity that good things only happen to other people. A positive person would genuinely celebrate the other persons success even if it was unearned. Positive people talk about opportunities not obstacles. 

Life is complicated

Obviously, life is a mix of both things you control and those you don't. We have all heard the serenity prayer.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference.
Many things in life we cannot control: from the qualities of our birth to perhaps a freak accident. But what we can control is our reaction.

Is it a choice

I can't speak for anybody else but I can tell you in my life it is a choice. There have been times when I have let life drive me and times when I have ruled my life.  As I've gotten old, I've realized the only real way to be happy and accomplish things is to live with intention.  To own your life. That is a lot of what the Slackers Guide to Life is about. It's someone who has often let the flow of life lead him will it would finally taking the rudder and trying to steer the ship.