Perception

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Everything you see or hear or experience in any way at all is specific to you. You create a universe by perceiving it, so everything in the universe you perceive is specific to you.

Status: good, although I was up way too early this morning. sitting here now fussing over photos for IG and then staring at a blank page trying to decide what to write. Anxiety levels: moderate. I may just bin it and go to the gym.

Nikon D3400
1/500 sec
f/9
18mm
ISO 100

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Street Photography

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My alone feels so good, I’ll only have you if you’re sweeter than my solitude.

Status: grotty. awake at 3:30am. couldn’t get back to sleep, so got up around 4:30am. sitting here in a pool of fever induced clammy sweat agonising over photos and accompanying captions. Should I just take the day off so I can rest up and get better? Yes. Am I actually going to do that? Nope. I have stuff to do; actually I have a full day and want to squeeze in some writing and photo editing on top of that. I have zero interest in sitting around feeling ill; I’d rather just prop myself up with some aspirin and then get on with It.

Photography.

I’ve had a few good days; actually I was able to take pictures every day over the weekend – Friday to Sunday. Now spending time on the pictures from the 31st, with the 5th, 6th and 7th to follow. Cognisant that time is growing short and I need to consider timing around disposing of the entry level kit before I leave; prefer not to take it back with me, but will keep that option open as a last resort.

The models that I booked for this week have flaked on me, and I think I’ve lost interest in ticking that box. May work on organising that for next week, but I think I’ll be okay with it if I can’t get it done before I leave. I’ll have another bite at that particular apple at some point in the future, but right now I’m enjoying the street photography, so maybe it’s best to stick with that, especially since the weather is getting better.

Date.

M and I are getting together again tomorrow evening for dinner and festivities (or is it me and M? Remember being taught the former in school, but I’ve been seeing people use the latter?). Looking forward to seeing her, but not interested in the partying that will ensue. Don’t get me wrong, I love a debaucherous evening, but not all the time and I’m at that stage of the week when I’m mostly interested in working on my creative projects. Plus I’m clearly sick, so there’s that…….

Writing.

Not much to say on this front other than the photography has taken over. I don’t even have enough energy at the moment to self-flagellate over the lack of writing, which is not a bad thing. As long as I’m being productive with the photography and am not wasting my free time with YT videos and other such time wasters, I’m okay. Will need to revisit this goal because clearly it’s not holding my attention…….

Ok, let’s get on with it.

Nikon D3400
1/200 sec
f/9
55mm
ISO 100

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The Monkey Mind

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I’m always soft for you, that’s the problem. You could come knocking on my door five years from now and I would open my arms wider and say ‘come here, it’s been too long, it felt like home with you.

Status: good. kinda. Didn’t get enough sleep last night and the monkey mind is riding me hard today. It took me three tries to spell the word “night” properly. Now I know I’m tired.

Distracted by the need to get out and take photos of the new snowfall after the winter storm last nihgt, fuck, night and hesitating because it’s pretty cold outside, and the wind is still quite strong, so essentially it’s a maelstrom of snow being blown off the buildings into these swirling winds which adds to the unpleasantness of being outside.

I think I just need to suck it up and do it. (I think that might make a catchy slogan)

Negligence and a lackadaisical Chairman. The condo association failed to bill the shareholders/lease owners for the use of AirCon over the course of 2018. System failures, I’m told. It took a year to resolve. Coincidently it ran for an exact calendar year. Suspicious. Even though they new this was an issue at the mid-mark of last year, they waited until a full year had passed before informing us and, oh by the way, here’s your bill for the 2018 AirCon.

I hate surprises.

Spoke to my tenant and they are going to cover the bill, thankfully. That’s one less thing I need to worry about and I’m very thankful that I don’t have to cover the bill. As for the Chairman, I think I need to have a word with him about this. Actually, debating over whether I should or not. I doubt I’m going to get the response I want, it may just frustrate and annoy me. I suspect I want to reach and out inflict a little damage for the pain he caused. If that’s the only intent then maybe it’s best to let sleeping dogs lie. The tenant has agreed to pay the bill, I should maybe just call it good enough.

I’ll mull this over some more…..

Nikon D3400
1/60 sec
f/5.6
18mm
ISO 800

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Buddhism and Meditation

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Be content to seem what you really are.

Status: good. really good. still. But, a little uncomfortable. I’ve been booted from my comfortable working space due to some upgrades and such. This will take about a week to complete. So, I’ve ensconced myself in an Indigo for today, tomorrow will be the Library, maybe. Want to do some reading on Buddhism and Meditation, so I think that will be the best place spend the day .

Burning through a book by Dan Harris called 10% Happier which is about his journey to discover peace of mind/focus through meditation. I started meditating in April of last year, and while I’ve found it useful I think I need to take the next step in order to optimise it for my purposes. He also talks a lot about Buddhism, which is where the meditation comes from, and the whole philosophy around it. I’m intrigued. Not interested in the more mystical aspects, but embracing change and the impermanence of life seems like a good approach. And as a bonus it compliments my interest in minimalism.

My date yesterday texted me 10 minutes before we were due to meet, which was after I left the house, and said that she was running late. No problem, I responded, what’s your ETA? She said, 30 minutes-ish later than our original meeting time. I’m standing in the hallway outside my unit and the elevator has just arrived. I pause. The elevator leaves. I tell her that I have a limited amount of time. She asks if we should reschedule, to which I agree. She then apologises, which I appreciated.

I have to admit: I have zero tolerance for people who are cavalier with my time. I’m trying to be a bit more forgiving and a bit more “zen” about these things, however from past experience this has never been a good sign. If she’s late on the very first date, then this is going to be an ongoing trend. The issue with this is that I’m basically being told that she is the most important person in this interaction, and that my time is not valuable. In other words, she has no respect for my time and therefore has no respect for me. If she has no respect then making a good impression on the first date becomes irrelevant. It’s incidental to the process.

I don’t want to devote time and energy to this situation and this kind of behaviour. So, I accepted the apology and left it at that. If she’s really interested in meeting and it really was an accident then I think she should be the one to initiate a conversation around making arrangements to try and meet again. If she reaches out to me then I’ll agree to meet with her. If not, then I’ll take it as disinterest and therefore will not devote any more time to this. After all, I can make better use of my time with the other options on the table………….

Nikon D3400
1/60 sec
f/3.8
22mm
ISO 1600

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Excuses

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Never make excuses. Your friends don’t need them and your foes won’t believe them. 

Status: good. still good. no excuses to get things done. Trying a new routine this morning. Want to see if this will make it easier to focus on the writing. I mean honestly, I’m my own worst enemy and I’m doing a disservice to myself by not trying to create an optimal framework which is conducive to being creative.

There are of course other things going on here. Stubbornly holding onto the idea that it needs to be perfect (there is only one person reading it), and letting the challenge of the task intimidate me into not starting (just start, accomplishing something will build encouragement and momentum). My initial efforts are not going to be great and that’s okay. The purpose of the exercise is to learn the lessons I need to learn so that I can improve and become more competent as time goes on.

Ok.

Date yesterday cancelled. Actually, I cancelled it. Texted me at the time we were due to meet and said that she’d be there in 20 minutes. I have zero tolerance for people who are cavalier with my time. She told me some excuse about taking someone to the hospital. That’s a new one, I thought, I’ll give her points for originality. I’m about to leave the café,  but instead decided to order an espresso and chill. I mean, I was already there and you know, that rack tho. The espresso went down like liquid awesomeness. Turns out that she ran over someone’s foot with her car and had to take this person to the hospital. I stop to admire her creativity for a second….and then inform her that I’m leaving. She responds with it’s probably best if she stays at the hospital with her victim. (Probably?) I agree with her, that’s actually the right choice in this situation.

So, let’s take stock of what we’ve learned about my date so far. Cons: poor timekeeper, bad driver. Pros: creative, does the right thing, nice rack. Okay, so the Pros have it 3 to 2. All joking aside, she did apologise profusely during the back-and-forth texting and I accepted the apology, so we’re going to try again on Friday.

Gillette. Feel the need to address this in a blog post which no-one is going to read. Full disclosure: I haven’t seen the new Gillette commercial and I don’t use their products. I’m not the target audience/demographic for this ad, which means they’re not trying to sell me their products. I’ve seen people on one side of the issue getting annoyed/upset at the content of the commercial, and on the other side defending it. My take on it is this: they’re trying to sell more product by appealing to a new and/or underserved demographic. The primary purposes of a company is to maximise profit and increase shareholder value. If they think that this marketing effort will achieve those things then that’s good business. It is, as we used to say back in the day, “just business” (alluding to it not being personal, we’re just acting in the best interest of the company). It’s not the first time that a company has put profits ahead of a morally ambiguous decision, and it won’t be the last. That said, my question is this: what happens when the target audience for the commercial realises that they’re victims of salesmanship? That the company is just telling them what they want to hear in order to sell them (more) stuff?

Nikon D3400
1/640 sec
f/9
55mm
ISO 100

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Imperfections

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Imperfections are attractive when their owners are happy with them. 

Status: good. still good. Typically this is the first day that I’m starting to feel like myself after partying on Saturday night. Three days to catch up on sleep and completely recover. That’s too much.

I’m not writing. Other than this blog I haven’t been writing. Thinking that maybe I should stop beating my head against this wall and do something else. It’s getting underfoot. I’m sitting here waiting to start and then never starting. That’s time which could be spent doing something else. I still feel like I have it in me, but maybe I should focus on something else in the meantime.

Updated offer came through from the Insurance company. It’s good. It’s real good. I’m still going to try and drag this out a little bit so that I can enjoy some more freedom from the corporate grind. Aim to accept the offer on Friday. That’ll also give me extra time to field an offer from my network contact which has been a little slow in materialising. At this stage I’m mostly just curious about the contents of the offer. It would have to be materially better than what the Insurance company has offered for me to backtrack.

Date yesterday went okay. She’s definitely a very Earthy hippy. We vibed well, but she is definitely not my type. Pleasantly surprised to find out that she isn’t a hardcore partier, but she is definitely one of these Lost Girls. Having been a Lost Boy myself it’s a case of the Devil recognising one of His own. Not really interested in seeing her again, but she has just texted me to say, “you have nice energy!”. Dead surprised that she’s interested at all.

In the meantime, I have another date this evening. She seems normal. We’ll see.

Nikon D3400
1/30 sec
f/3.5
18mm
ISO 100

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Self-love

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Try to love yourself as much as you want someone else to.

 Status: good. procrastinating. Actually, I’m not procrastinating, it’s pain avoidance. I’m not sure where to start, so I lean on the default. It’s a new thing, so it’s difficult. It’s a new thing, which means I’m not very good at it. Combine all of those things together and the end result is something that I’m not enjoying very much. I’m focusing on the immediate when I should be playing the long game and focusing on completing the task, which includes learning the lessons I need to learn in order to be more competent on subsequent attempts. I think enjoyment will come from these iterative attempts, and increase as I get better at it.

I think I just had a bit of a lucid moment there. Don’t worry, it won’t happen again.

Ok, date this evening with the tattooed lady. Do I want to do this? Nope. Part of me hope she cancels. Spider sense tingling. I’ve said, “Fuck it” and just done it more times than I can count over the course of my life. I think I’ve reached my upper threshold of ‘Fuck its’. But, maybe just this last one……..

Nikon D3400
1/30 sec
f/3.5
18mm
ISO 400

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