A creative post

I cannot move in the studio at the moment, as four Victorian bannisters that I have been working on for about three months are sitting there, dominating the workspace and sitting on wool boxes that I cannot open as a result.

 

The enlightenment project is also taking up a lot of messy space and money, as it is another resin related project.  This is likely to continue for weeks to come.

 

It is amazingly annoying, not being able to move around your own studio.  Amazingly annoying, and amazingly messy when the reason for it is dripping chemical pus all over the floor.

 

Tomorrow I will spend about two hours sanding off some of the resin that I have added today. This is annoying also, since it costs around £40 per litre, and cheaper casting resin will not do.  The enlightenment project involves an awful lot of resin, so it is taking a very long time.

 

Meanwhile, in my bedroom, which I half-heartedly attempted to declutter last night, I have half a dozen boxes of shades of green, as I am working on a coral reef for Wolfish, and a large selection of leaves and butterflies for another piece or two.  Folie a Versailles, meanwhile, languishes elsewhere as it is too big to put anywhere unless I am actually working on it.  It is too hot to work on during the summer, so I have to wait until the weather gets colder.

 

Wolfish himself is staring at me, with his so far dead eyes from the other side of the room.  The cats enjoy cuddling him, since he is bigger than them, but until I make up my mind whether to stuff him and how many friends I plan to make for him he has nowhere to go, as his tank is in the box room awaiting tiles and paint.

 

What’s the time Mr Wolfe? is keeping company with Perfect Posterior elsewhere in the room, as I have a little job to do on both of these.  I still have a computer to finish also, so I will probably put that together today, in the computer room, alongside the other computers I have completed in the last couple of months.

 

In the meantime, Kira is starting to invade me a little, since my economics posts this week.  She is still back at last year so far, but I suspect that it is coming up for time to finish the book.  I have a good idea what is coming for the next one now, so it is probably time to finish this one.  I also feel a bit more like going through my depressingly abandoned academic notes, so you can probably look forward to more careless fact dropping in the next book.

 

Feeling slightly better today, although my mother apparently thinks we are at a grand ball on a so-far unnamed Scottish island. This side of things is very tiring, so I try to avoid talking or thinking about it.

 

For those readers who wonder why I am talking about all these things in one post, this is how you have to learn to pace yourself.  Life is messy.  Probably the most important thing I learned, from all the things I learned in the course of my intensive exploration of life, is that it is perfectly fine to do 30 things slowly, and you get a much better result than doing one thing fast. You only learn to have the confidence to put things aside by doing it.  Yes, you will finish the job later, and it will be much better, so do not be afraid.

 

 

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Ina Disguise Q and A

I have had some challengers this week, although they do not choose to actually discuss anything, I am going to answer their fascinating questions anyway.

Objectification

There are many videos on this available on Youtube.  The questioner asked me about this blog post, or rather made an attempt to say I was talking nonsense without actually reading it all the way through:

 

Social Conditioning is a bitch, ain’t it?

 

The questioner was a young American goth, who did not realise that even questioning it meant that his masculinity was a bit shaky.

 

I am not the kind of chick that has ever really required feminism.  As I have previously mentioned, I was so obsessed with work that the question of my out-working the guys never arose.  The mistake people make with objectification is mistaking it for seriousness.  Whilst some uses of young men and women, in particular, are a bit OTT, we are past the point at which it becomes some subliminal form of making you feel bad.  Everyone is aware what it is for.  Please now watch the entire video below.

 

As you can see, objectification is here reduced to a matter of levity.  Men like looking at women.  Women are not to be encouraged to look at men in a societal set-up that favours them, since women are to be rendered dependent on them, hence our young man’s objection to my statement.  The recent growth in male stripping etc indicates that America is developing a system of dual intimidation rather than relaxing gender roles as Europe has made some effort to do.  This is for commercial reasons.  They have also introduced a new concept of ‘ugly sex,’ which is what everybody else has been doing for years.

 

I do not come from a culture in which this is particularly relevant.  I will do a post at some point on Scottish flirting, which I am sure will enlighten poor confused Wolfe no end.

 

When I say that men like to be objectified, they enjoy the humour and attention involved.  I do not mean they necessarily like being treated as toys any more than a relatively serious woman does.  In some cases, entire careers have been set up purely to get the kind of attention they crave in the case of men who really do like being treated as toys.

 

A great many men have openly commended Best Romance Ever which is a book very much centred on Kira’s peculiar anti-objectification of Sam.  She maintains distance to achieve intimacy, in a way.  This tells me that men are a lot more flexible than many women give them credit for, although the cover does indicate that it is a unisex book.

 

2.  Conservatism

 

Some tiresome American Ayn Rand fan tells me that conservatism is about personal responsibility.  No, conservatism is about having a life so easy that you cannot imagine it all falling apart and needing any help.  The idea of something happening to you is unthinkable, and you refuse to imagine it.  You do not care about other people in society, whether they live or die, or whether they ever get the chance to thrive.  There’s no two ways about it, there is nothing moral about conservatism, American or British.  Society is about the survival of all, not how much you have managed to get for yourself.

 

Ayn Rand was a darkly humorous psychotic narcissist who had the naive American media around her little finger.  This doesn’t make you look very smart.  Why not buy another gun and shoot some poor people, and cut out all the middle men?  What do you mean no?  Are you afraid you might be put into a private prison and subjected to capital labour for the rest of your life along with the massive proportion of your population you choose to incarcerate? Land of liberty, my fat ass. Land of free speech, spending your time and money suing each other for saying what you think. No thank you, America.

 

 

 

3.  Brexit

 

America does not want us to leave the EU, because they are waiting for the EU to sign TTIP and TISA.  This is a good argument for leaving.  Cameron does not want us to leave the EU, because there is a fat job waiting for him if he keeps us in it.  He is also waiting for the EU to sign us up to TTIP, as he knows perfectly well if we choose to leave, he will be doing it, and then he will have even bigger riots on his hands as we all object to TTIP.  You can look forward to yet another spurious war to distract us.

 

It depends really on who you trust less, the faceless people in Europe, or the absolute scum the English voted into government.  Leaving the single market on the promise of finding new markets outside seems like a spurious argument on one hand, on the other, will Britain get the chance to leave ever again?  I do not trust either side of the argument, going by the people making the arguments, so it is important to examine the facts.  In the absence of hang-ups about immigration, there is still something to be said for exit.

 

Having said this, I would have preferred the European experiment to have worked, but the fact Europe is even prepared to entertain TTIP or anything like it makes me think we would be better off without it.  It is far easier to stop a small machine than a large one, as I have discussed in previous posts.

 

4. Twisty

 

Someone asked after Twisty.  We are on an off period at the moment, as I am avoiding confronting an issue neither of us can do anything about.  This is not a romantic issue, Twisty is an old friend who is very helpful, or very hateful, depending on mood.  He will be annoyed that I referred to him as a finisher, but I will explain this in a different creativity post.  To make up for this, here is Twisty’s film, much acclaimed and which, like his others, is all his own work.

 

 

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Tired and Lonely

It strikes me that one of my cats and I have a lot in common.  She doesn’t really go out much, as she bothers the hunting cat by clinging to him, and she checks in with me every hour or so to verify that she is still alive.  I now check hits on things to verify that I still exist.

 

This is an improvement on ten years ago.  Ten years ago I was having to accept that my life was over, after having done nothing but work for years, since that was all I really cared about.

 

Ten years ago, I imagine Harry was still coming here, although he had probably starting seeing someone else at the time.  Our relationship ended about two years before we actually split up, which is the opposite of Twisty and I.  When we were together, fifteen years or so ago, we split up long before our friendship ended.  He was so stressed that I felt I would have been killing him otherwise.

 

Not being able to talk about your actual skill is a very unhappy state to be in.  It was not until a week or two ago that I finally lost my tolerance for small talk. Small talk is great fun, but when your mind is actually working on something much bigger, it eventually causes you to become extremely stressed. Even if you do get them on topic, they tend to run off with a different ball, and you lose interest in redirecting them.

 

I became intolerant of my sisters at around ten years old, whereupon it was decided that I was weird and not one of them.  My mother did not help at all with this, as she is highly suspicious of anybody who is not like her.  It was not until she had her stroke that she exclaimed that I was more like her mother.  Us creative intellectual types don’t have much interest in making other people do things for us, or dressing snappily.  We are busy doing something else, so it is wise to either get us to actually do something, or leave us alone.  My mother was fortunate to have her mother, my father and then me in her life, as we were/are all pretty much the same, grumpy, positive introverts that apparently exist to do things for her.

 

Still, it gets very lonely when you have nobody to talk to about the subject that interests you.  I have had to listen to years of ranting about immigration, and as a former ethnic minority specialist, I have quite a lot of counter argument to people who rant about immigration.  Nobody has noticed that I have not bothered to respond to this.

 

The most intense egomaniac I was with, the chef, only learned what music I liked about two and a half years after I met him.  Either I am a very quiet partner, or I have picked people that swither between self interest and not being particularly interested in me.  I think I deserved better, on reflection.

 

Maybe we should be less tolerant.  Make way for the optimists, and shed our skin more often when it comes to people.  Maybe we should all be more like Wolfe, and ignore everything that does not instantly gratify.  I have coped with too much, most of it for other people, and now I am left thinking that I will never get to discuss anything real with anybody.

 

This could be a good thing.  It might lead to some interesting work.

 

I’m tired, and I do not see an end to being alone.

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I’m right, quite a lot of the time

The entire story of this blog can be summed up in one word.  Confidence.  From the day I went from a disparaging stranger to first commenting to Wolfe in an effort to initiate the conversation we never had, almost six years ago now, the entire episode was all about confidence.  Why would a keen thinker even bother trying to explain herself to a promiscuous dude selling health food in the first place?  It all comes down to confidence, and in my case familial abuse.  I thought for a long time before I even tried talking about my ideas to him, and then a lot of emotional upheaval took place which has led me to where we are now.

 

There are good elements and bad, in terms of consequences.  I offer up a far more well rounded and arguably useful package now, since I have always been reasonably good at breaking down complex subjects into terms that even my not-particularly-interested friends could understand.  I am less inclined to be flashy for a small audience, rather than down to earth and faintly comedic for a slightly larger one.  You may not listen, and you may choose to block it out, but at least I now get a hearing in the first place.

 

There are several things which came to my attention have assured me that I was right and David Wolfe is/was wrong to ignore me:

A report, possibly two relevant reports, have indicated that GMO has failed to do anything at all for world hunger, as predicted in the writing he did not care to discuss with me.
Yanis’ view indicates that I am right in my thinking in relation to the ethics of allowing corporations to legally challenge governments. We have been at the mercy of false information via discreet lobbying for years, and now we are to get less than discreet legal challenges to force us to live according to profit makers’ wishes. Also as predicted in the original book.
The information on the European Union, provided for the referendum, indicates that the US encirclement policy against Putin is indeed at the heart of these not-particularly-nice trade deals we are being told we have to negotiate.  (ditto) We are all supposed to form a giant trading circle around Russia.  This is unhelpful, childish and stupid, and frankly I have more respect for Russia as a result.
The Asean nations may be quite happy to go along with this, but the Asean nations have a host of different costs and benefits to Europe.  I always previously thought of Europe as being the responsible continental bloc, with less pressure in terms of suffering populations and being more fussy about food in particular, I imagined that the EU would save the world from the mortgage on life that GM has been turned into by American corporatism. As the German chemical companies are also rather keen on modifying genes to accommodate chemical profit-making, this is not going to be the case.

I am sorry Wolfe.  I am sorry that I am not also 22, blonde, wearing a bikini or whatever your limited criteria is for speaking to people without messing about like a squirming five year old for several years.  I am sorry that I am not a confident person.  I am sorry that I thought that you would understand anything that I had to say.

 

It is a shame that I was going through so much at the time that I did not just dismiss him as an idiot instead of putting myself through all this in order to come back to the point where I appreciate my own mind. I could have lived without the food related self torture too.  That side of things isn’t his fault, if I hadn’t bothered actually speaking to him at all, I could have avoided any of it. Discovering that he is even more insecure than I am in some respects, clouded my vision even further.

 

For the benefit of the rather stupid science ‘experts’ I frequently come across online – here is a short, concise description of what GMO actually does.

Patenting a seed, and then suing landowners if that seed is blown onto their land is a bit like granting the company doing it ‘God-like’ powers for the purposes of profit.  It would have been very easy for a supposedly ‘God-fearing’ nation like America to simply spot the ethical problem with this and make an ethical decision that life is not patentable.  They did not.
As with the Green revolution, where the USA sent chemical-treated seeds in an effort to feed the starving, instead of paying a blind bit of attention to local foodstuffs and issues with land, profit is at the heart of American altruism.  All that happened was that small landowners were put out of business in favour of larger landowners who could afford equipment and chemical supplies to support the growing of unsuitable and unsustainable crops which did not provide year round food availability.  This led in one notable case to a poorer village having to feed the next village, the next village having been stupid enough to agree to accept American donations.  GM simply took the Green Revolution a step further.  According to America, the entire world should pay them for growing food.  This is what TTIP will lead to. It is a social and capitalist revolution, not one of altruism or concern for others.
Nature is extremely good at coping with interference.  The only thing GM actually does in terms of reducing pesticide or herbicide use, is ensure that ecosystems develop systems for defence against man-made chemicals. This means that the aforementioned chemical company gets to invent another chemical, and stays in business indefinitely, passing the costs of development on to the idiots that agreed to this moronic system in the first place.  It is only a matter of time before, like the movie, the Americans produce a crop which can be watered only with Coca Cola.
GM may have saved the papaya, but it kills thousands of suicidal Indian farmers every year.  Yes, of course these people matter.
TTIP, TTP etc means that the very very large chemical companies will have the right to challenge any government objecting to feeding the population with GM food.  They have already sneaked in a few without telling us, and now they will insist on the same non-labelling policy in Europe that they have inflicted on the American population.  This will ultimately lead to a global disaster of mammoth proportions, with the double whammy of chemical resistance and no labelling.  Who cares, right?
In addition, TISA can still allow American health companies to lobby for the right to invade our health services.  You can look forward to lots of not very tempting bad food advertisements, in tandem with solutions for health problems you need never have had.  That is how America works, and they would like us to share their bad management for fun and profit.

Do you want to exist in corporate slavery, to please a few lobbyists and politicians too stupid and irresponsible to see the consequences of their actions?

 

Do you want to live in a world where you are effectively forced to spend a large part of your life ill, in order to pay someone to make sure you do not become even more ill?

 

Do you want a world of opportunity, or do you prefer to live in a world where you have to toe the corporate line, whether that is about what you eat or what you do for a living?

 

Do you want to put up a barrier to your own entry to a market, whether that be by being a small landowner, growing whatever you want rather than being told, as many Americans are, that you cannot grow food on your own land because it doesn’t fit in with the fascist regime? Or by starting a business in an impossibly regulated market?

 

Do you want private prisons and capital labour?

 

Do you want armed police turning up if you milk your own cow? (yes, this has already happened in the US of A.)

 

Do you want an inferior, uncritical corporate education to enable you too to cheer people like Trump?

 

Do you want to be denounced by a faceless PR company or even your own doctor if you speak out against any of this?

 

If this is what you want, keep going as you are, because that is the future we are looking at.  Sit and play some more Candy Crush Saga, and see if that helps.  Make sure that you rid yourself of conscience, self directed thought or any feeling that you can do anything about it.  Look forward to corporate militia, because once the stupid politicians and corrupt individuals willing to agree to this retire to their tax haven, this is what you are left with.

 

 

 

Right, Mr Superhero, read it and weep.  Move your ass, if you know how

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Hypocrisy

It is amazing how hurt and confused you get when somebody steals your book.  I was not terribly bothered when Best Scandal Ever was pirated, as they were giving it away and I appreciated the distribution, but last night I found out someone has been selling Best Romance Ever on Amazon.
I have no idea how much money they have made from it, I do not imagine that it is much, but the fact they put a hideous cover on it and had the audacity to put it up there annoys me intensely. It is a bit like handing out leaflets for something you believe in, only for a mugger to come along, take your leaflets and then stand next to you selling them.
The only reason that there is money involved with Amazon purchases, is because Amazon won’t let me put the books on there free of charge.  I have a policy of not charging for the best…ever books because they were intended for one person, and that person happens to have no respect for giving things like books away. (you would understand if you knew the lengthy story, but it is not something I care to go into here) In any case, since I do not really publicise them, they do not move on Amazon, so I rarely check it.
To add to this mystery, someone who clearly knows me put themselves on Amazon as ‘Little Minx,’ and reviewed both books.  Anyone meeting me in person would drop the little part, so I am not sure who this could be.  The person knows me well enough to remember my birthday, and even my closest friends would know that my birthday is something I usually try to avoid, so I am more confused than ever.
The good thing is that there is not likely to be money involved.  The great thing about starting out with a bunch of free books, is that you take the whole thing for what it is – a hobby, until someone either tells you that you are too good to be giving away books, or you have amassed sufficient readers and books to make it worthwhile to sell them at all.  Money kind of sullies everything, in terms of fun, so I think given that we have now had four bestselling authors try to claim the book, (turned out to be a software error causing their angst from other books) another book has been pirated, and now someone has actually tried to steal Best Romance ever, I am rather glad I chose this slow and lazy route.  I am learning not to hit the roof when something stressful happens, because nobody else is all that bothered.
Anyway, you can see why someone who put a lot of work and money into marketing would absolutely freak out if something like this would happen. That is not to say that us paupers take it much better.  If it is your book, it is your book.
On a lighter note, I now know what stumbleupon is for. It doesn’t tell you much on the site, but basically it is a kind of swapsite for websites that want to expand, so there are a lot of people who sit and click through tons of them in order to add theirs.  It adds a lot of traffic, but most of that traffic is utterly useless.  I am also in the process of adding myself to a few other sites from the ‘shameless’ post.  This takes a long time to get up and running, so do not think that it is something you can do in one day.  Try two a day or so, as the form filling and information adding gets really boring.  Then you wonder how you could possibly have ignored all the fiddly bits that they ask for and not kept a record of all your website addresses.  Such a waste of time.  Sigh.

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Ina Disguise Statistics Update

Ina Disguise Statistics update

For those who are interested, here is my statistics update.

 

More than a million readership hits per year does not translate into actual readers, so do not be deceived if somebody tells you they have X million hits.  It probably includes some bots, some accidental hits etc.

 

Overall, Ina Disguise attracts about 5,000 people per year via the artwork, from all over the world, although I seem to be particularly popular in the Far East, Eastern Europe and the USA.

 

Ina Disguise has about 25,000 readers, the blog is set to overtake the books this year unless I put out the unfinished works I have on the go, which depends on how I feel.  Like the pervert I am, I am having a sewing moment in the course of designing the game so I have not felt like writing for a while.  I have also been building computers for the last month or so, and I have other commitments apart from this project.

 

95 people have so far this month come to the website looking for information on Wolfe, which is a bit bizarre as statistically speaking, he only gets about 20 percent of the posts.  He is one of many threads, and if you take a look at the tag cloud, ironically not the most significant one.  I have just let it happen, rather than concentrating on one thing or another, so I guess I am a bit inattentive. Some posts were strategic, and I see that my subversive PR is extremely effective. (no, I am not going further into that, but David would not be displeased at the level of naughtiness that goes into this blog)

 

300 people have got to the products page so far this month, which is good considering that I almost never plug it.  I am the laziest marketer in the world so I figure this is OK.  The website is actually doing slightly better than Etsy in terms of the artwork, so I guess spreading myself around a bit in the form of article writing is the next step.

 

I figure this is not bad for a part-time entity.  I need to get the game nailed down and the books and stories out, and I need to work on some articles whilst I get some more artwork done.  The sooner I have the non-Ina Disguise work out of the way the better.

 

Again, if you are reading this because you plan to do something similar, take the slow approach where possible.  You can waste a lot of money if you try to rush it, and the personal approach ALWAYS wins.  It is also considerably cheaper to put hours in than money in the early months.

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The Future of Capitalism

The Future of Capitalism

Listening to the delectable Yanis Varoufakis this evening, (he moves beautifully) it struck me what a marvellous idealist he is.  His ideas about society and capitalism are charming, but they will not work, sadly.  The future for the Eurozone and for the USA is extremely bleak for the general population, and there is very little chance of turning back.

 

Why?  Yanis’ take on the relationship between capital and state is based on the idea that:

businesses appropriate research from society, which is governable
society has responsibility for the people in it

What we have seen from our government in the UK, is that a large proportion of society feels no responsibility for the people in it, and that governments cannot be trusted to function effectively or responsibly when there is a possibility of personal profit.  As a thinking and feeling individual, Yanis is adorable, but as a realist, he falls down on a number of counts.

 

TTIP will give business the right to challenge governments on issues of regulation.  In the UK and the rest of Europe, regulation is currently dictated from Brussels, by faceless people who debate in private and are seemingly unchallengeable by the well paid MEPs who sit in the European Parliament. What we have found out about TTIP has been either leaked, or interpreted by people who have limited time to look at the documents, and who are prevented from making notes, taking the time they need to study it, or fully evaluating the information they are provided with.  This will not do, for a number of reasons which the public appear to be choosing not to understand.

 

Yanis’ view of society as being something which falls within governable boundaries has disintegrated thanks to the internet.  Intellectual property now has to be seen as individual in nature, rather than as something produced by a collective will.  This makes it far easier to exploit, and far more difficult to regulate.  In addition, enforcing taxation on business effectively has become impossible, in the event that we do not have tax haven income, we will simply be undercut by systems in place in countries such as Switzerland, the villages of Zug and Pfaffikon being cases in point.

 

We are all about to be crushed under a capitalist jackboot which is not going to be under anyone’s control, and if there is a suspicion that it is, the person concerned will simply be presented with a self interest situation that they cannot, and probably will not, resist.  Responsible idealists such as Yanis and I are a dying, almost dead breed.

 

Add to this the massive proportion of the UK and USA population who appear to believe that nothing unfortunate will ever happen to them, and that as long as they support the mighty they will be protected, which is not only untrue but a vicious state of existence, and you have a storm which ends in disaster.

 

As Yanis says, the future mechanisation of deskilled work means that the very people baying for the blood of the less fortunate will very soon be suffering alongside them.  As Yanis says, it only takes a small development for AI to pass the Turing test, meaning that human labour will cease to be relevant at all in a massive proportion of cases.

 

The only good thing about this is that the businesses still need someone to sell to.  If we cannot tax businesses effectively, and businesses require nothing but customers, what are we left with but resource hogging consumers with no income?  Then nation states truly do become irrelevant, since inevitably anyone functioning internationally will simply choose to base themselves wherever corporation tax is lowest.

 

The good news here is that individuals can only consume so much.  As I have said in previous posts, you have to trickle up, otherwise you cease to function at all.  There is no point in continuously benefitting the haves at the expense of the have-nots, because the haves have limited wants.  Otherwise you end up with very dirty luxury, since nobody can afford to do the cleaning.

 

So, what is the answer?  My proposal, in my extensive paper for Wolfe, was that the answer is to create maximum income limitations, return to anti trust legislation, and break up large companies.  Genetic modification for example, should not be in the hands of chemical companies, and companies such as Walmart should be restricted to one line of retail trade.  This keeps companies as competitive instead of domineering forces, and it creates new opportunities for the general population. We certainly do not want TTIP or TISA, which are inherently corrupt deals designed to confuse those being courted to sign them.  We allowed them to get too big, and now we have a major and urgent problem with companies bigger than nation states.

 

If we cannot persuade the public to vote with their wallets, we have to persuade governments to join together to prevent the unlimited growth of individual businesses.  Capitalism is lovely, but it is no respecter of human suffering.  Since there is no way of making a global decision to do this, we also have to take into account that a less altruistic country is always going to allow the existing giants to function without restriction, and we have to be prepared to punish them accordingly.  Otherwise the future involves destruction beyond our current imagination, as we return to a dark age of clearing the starving bodies from the street, whilst others hide in their rooms, eking a living from underselling their ideas to unfettered corporate monsters.

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Self Imposed Aging

Self imposed aging

I read an article this morning with a title along the lines of ‘Millennials have the key to future business development, as only they have an idea how to innovate for future customers.’  It was not much catchier than this, but I am a bit unwilling to bother finding the link.  These are the same millennials who graduated at the same time as me, who were denounced as incapable of knowing when to agree to make other people a cup of tea or do the photocopying rather than impressing everyone with their vast knowledge of nothing.

 

Personally, since at a whopping ten years older than them I was discounted entirely as a colleague, and was asked by Rothschild’s why I would even want to work with such people, I have limited experience of them, but I do not think they have exclusive knowledge that anyone else fails to grasp.

 

One of the things the article touched on was our unwillingness to think like children as we get older.  We lose our curiosity about the world, and prefer to develop intensive knowledge streams.  Well duh, you can’t follow every path, otherwise everyone would look a whole lot more like me, and a lot less like someone with a mortgage and children.  At some point you have to use the principle of opportunity cost to decide what you want out of life.

 

Having said this, there is no reason why you cannot devote some of your time to being aware of what you are turning down.  I, for example, cannot be bothered getting a smartphone in order to know all about apps, instagram or snapchat.  I detest mobile phones, and had to be forced twice by an employer to accept one.  I do not see why I should be forced to be on the end of a connective string all the time, and I do think that there is value in maintaining your hand/eye coordination in the form of physically making 3 dimensional objects.  In the same way that a great chef creates something with colour, texture, flavour, overall design, an artist balances much the same principles with whatever medium they use.  I happen to be very good at 3d modelling, so I dabbled a bit with that online in the course of messing about, and as it turns out this is what I should probably be concentrating on if I want to make any money.

 

So, instead of playing computer games, all someone older than a Millennial has to do to maintain their current managerial and innovative capacity is learn a few computing science skills, app development, programming, game design etc.  It is not a hard overall concept to get your teeth into, everything works pretty much like your average, common or garden tree.  Millennials are not the only people to have seen a tree.  Whilst I do not see the value in endless photo sharing apps, so I am unlikely to come up with the next billion dollar format, I can just about manage to figure out how to take my ideas to a new generation, thanks all the same.

 

I had a friend years ago who despite being younger than me, said that I did not act the way a 32 year old (at the time) woman should act.  This is understandable, since my life has consisted of creative focus on seemingly random dudes, percolated with appalling long term relationships with people I shouldn’t have bothered either trusting or wasting time with.  On the other hand, who made the rules on how a 32 year old woman should act?  Do they hand out slippers and a cardigan on your 30th?  My family tend to peak very late in life, so I have always had my peak to look forward to, maybe this is making the difference?

 

At this point in my life, I notice that even one bad meal makes a difference to how I look, so I am aware that I am getting older, but apart from the now screaming urgency in terms of having a child, I do not feel in the slightest bit older in terms of my curiosity.  Am I really that unusual?

 

It certainly seems so, since most of my male friends seem to have settled into a disgruntled state of dissatisfaction with their lot and a kind of grumpy complacency that means they actually need to be shaken into thinking about changing anything.  It is most dispiriting.

 

Maybe my obsessive focus on work has helped me avoid this.  The lengthy concentration on a task, to the point where you are thinking you might get finished in the next five years or so, rather than constantly looking back and thinking things were better when you were 28.  They weren’t better at all.  Men aren’t really worth bothering with before 35 or so, and you have to actually save money to get anything done when you are that age because there is always someone waiting to charge you for learning the things you later find out are available free. You have more patience when you are older too, so the driven quality that seems to be admirable calms down to a more steadfast and skillful plod.  That is a good thing, not something that should be undervalued or maligned.

 

Perhaps I am lucky that my life has gone in a different direction to the one I actually worked for.  Perhaps a career and a family would have made me miserable, old and defensive.  Perhaps the people that seem so happy are hiding behind the thought that they did what was expected of them, and now don’t have to think at all.  This seems to me to be like a slow death.  Maybe being lonely and trapped at home is actually freedom, from conventional worry, loss of self and inflexible aging.

 

I can say for certain that deciding to effectively marry myself to a person that I do not know was the best decision I ever made in terms of endless self-doubt, so perhaps it is a case of making a decision outwith reality to prevent the crippling stiffness of age.  I can say with equal certainty that willingness to learn and change is a major factor in the aging process.

 

If you do not tweak the product, the product becomes obsolete, which is as relevant to yourself as it is to any product.

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Perfection is for failures

There is an intense strength about the creative mind that transcends reality in order to achieve something better.

 

I did not realise this, when I still spent time with Aldous and Harry, and wondered why I was not completely discouraged from doing anything, since they did not appear to either understand what I was doing, nor want to understand when it was explained to them.

 

Twisty, who is a finisher rather than a creator, is more encouraging as a rule, but I have detected the familiar sneer of contempt even as he sits watching me make a piece for weeks knowing perfectly well that everything I make looks as if a five year old is working on it until it gets to completion.  I have a very low failure rate, some would say too low, but I do tend to get the job done, even when the items I work on tend to be experimental in nature. Better this than not trying at all.

 

artwork 024meme2

 

Honey, I made you an icon, for example, is a form of orgonite, which I discovered in the course of experimenting with coloured grout and a vague idea I had about glorifying Wolfe in precious metals and gemstones.  It was only after I started the work that it occurred to me that all the gemstones had reiki meanings, and so I simply went for the relevant stones to create a message within a rather flashy and childlike rendering of Wolfe’s face. (I do love this picture of him, but I suspect it is because I see the genetic pointers that my father imprinted on me, so I guess it is a little vain of me.   He also looks a bit tired, which is very cute indeed if you happen to be a chick.)

 

Twisty has some amusing pictures of the making of the icon, which he takes great delight in showing me now and again.  I am reasonably pleased with the glorious kitsch imperfection and quasi-medieval effect.  I was very surprised that it was so popular in Russia.  I was afraid that they would be slightly offended that I had borrowed some Russian Orthodox imagery, but they passed the blog post around Russia for weeks.

 

I am now working on a cameo and 3d rendering of a statue which I found at Versailles, which has been slightly modified to look suspiciously like him, so I am getting more representative as I develop my creative stamina.  I do not want to go too far down this route, however, as my work is really about emotional imprinting.  The point is to allow the hands to do what you are feeling, rather than muck around with yet more new mediums.

 

Anyway, to return to the actual point.  Perfection is not something that successful creators or innovative thinkers really care to address.  It is up to a finisher like Twisty to worry about perfection and adding additional details to further egg your pudding, so to speak.  To someone like me, innovation involves mess, mistakes, and lots of them.  Fear of mistakes is therefore, fear of working at all.

 

Wolfe’s unwillingness to waste even a bad day at work, littered across youtube, was extremely useful in unlocking this tendency.  I am less likely to put things on the back burner until I have subconciously figured out a way of getting it just right.  This could be a wasteful new trait, but so far it has worked out well.  I do, of course have a lot of experience of how to get out of trouble these days, but I still retain the roughness that I crave in terms of the finished product.

 

I was the same as a chef.  Some chefs want their items to look mass produced or ‘perfect.’  I always wanted things to look as if your mother had slaved over the stove all day, and not quite managed to copy the picture.  Strangely, I have found most people, like me, associate this imperfection with love.  I was ‘denounced’ as the ‘flavour queen’ by a disparaging former chef at one point in my career.  To refer to something that tastes unusually good as not so proficient as something which looks perfect may seem churlish, but this is the nature of cooking at the higher levels.  They need to find something wrong with your work, otherwise there is something wrong with them.

 

And here is the key to those people who seek to discourage you by saying that your early efforts in terms of learning an instrument, learning to draw, learning to cook etc are worthless.  They are the sort of people who do nothing, learn nothing and pay for someone else’s efforts in terms of years of mistakes to achieve something new.  They are not the world’s innovators, and they fear their own mistakes.  There is an entire culture of admiring expertise which involves an abdication of personal responsibility.  It occurs to me that I too am guilty of this, since I am unwilling to spend more than two or three minutes on recording a blog post in case I do it well and annoy Wolfe.  Oratory is his thing, and I am unwilling to rain on his parade.

 

This is a terrible attitude.  I should want to make it better.  I just don’t want to.  I want to get the job done, and move onto the next, considerably more worthwhile task.  I have tried to explain this to Twisty many times, but he would rather spend four weeks on getting one thing perfect, in one memorable case missing the boat entirely in terms of topicality, than put out a rough product on the basis of building up an audience.  This is the trade off you have to make.  One of the many things I got from my ponderings on Wolfe, was that you are never going to be ready.  Something is always going to be wrong, so you might as well put your ‘better than most’ effort out and work on perfection later.

 

Perfection is for failures and people who don’t try.  A master of an art is someone who has learned to accept a margin of error that probably only he/she can see.  It doesn’t matter how hard you work on a creative concept, you will always see the problems.  Michelangelo would probably point at all the rough parts if you asked him about his work too.

 

So, my thought for the day is – Learn to love your mistakes, and you will learn to love you.  Forget everyone else, forget the negative voice and blunder away.  Smile at your errors, believe in your mistakes and don’t ever stop trying, because if you do, the only thing you will learn is how to be a perfect failure.

 

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Are you agreeing to be a nobody?

Are you agreeing to be a nobody?

The good thing about having a temper is that you get things cleared up now and again.  I tend to have a long fuse and nuclear sized blast, personally, which means that my relationships go through a lot of interruptions, unless I am in a particularly unusual situation.  Wolfe may be surprised to learn that I have actually been quite subdued in my response to our various misunderstandings and mishaps, since it is usually unclear whether he is doing it himself, or delegating it to a minion.

 

If you have a look at the welcome page, you will see that Ina Disguise is a lengthy response to a rather rude, arrogant and complacent individual, who felt quite safe to assume that it was OK to insult a stranger.  Your staff reflect you.

 

The fact that this stranger had already devoted a lot of time to something relatively important was entirely meaningless, and as a side product it wasted a lot of my emotional energy and time.  This is not his fault,  however, that much I do agree with.  I come from a fairly narcissistic family, so I am used to the ‘what do you mean I upset her, it is her fault for being upset’ response.

 

So I was left with a pile of emotional rubble, no family, nobody to look up to, which is out of character anyway as I am not in the habit of investing emotionally in fame whores.  People choose fame for a variety of reasons, and until I came across Wolfe, I did not have much respect for any of them.  There are several reasons for his particular love of being well known.  Pretty girls, money and providing people with health information, probably in that order.

 

So I was left with a number of alternatives:

I choose to accept that I do not deserve any common courtesy and am a nobody.
I choose to believe that I did something wrong by bothering to do a lot of intense academic work with the intention of offering it to a stranger who probably does not deserve it.
I choose to believe that I did something wrong by trying to give somebody a present.
I choose to believe Wolfe, my friend in London, or in fact Aldous, that I am way too ugly to be seen by anybody, and that women like me should crawl under a stone and die.
I choose to accept that by belief in any alternative hypothesis means that there is something wrong with me, and the evidence points to my having some sort of disorder, despite there being far less talented individuals out there promoting inferior values and work.
I rebel against a life history of being suppressed and do what the hell I feel like doing for a change.

It took several months to figure out the best course of action.  I settled on Ina Disguise.  There are a number of branches to the project, seen or unseen.  The main theme is, that I refuse to accept that I am either one of thousands of ‘fans,’ (there are many aspects of his work that I utterly hate, and I do wish that he had a completely different life, so I do not think that this is relevant at all) or sufficiently inferior to the rest of the human race that I am not entitled to say what I feel, when I feel like saying it. In the unlikely event that he does any more than check in now and again and read everything at once, which is what he has been doing since I made initial contact with him, then it is his look out.  He certainly didn’t care about upsetting me.

 

It would have been extremely unhealthy of me to agree to be a nothing, in order to do nothing, feel unhappy, and agree to be less than I actually am.  I have, in many respects met my match, and it is likely that I will spend the rest of my life alone as a result, presenting a further range of responses.  My personal choice is to enjoy the work and ignore everything else, and it benefits at least two people, never mind the thousands that have been entertained by my work so far.  I am astonished at the number of young people and men, in particular, who have been touched by my alternative take on love, life and work.

 

Whatever your approach to life, next time you self-evaluate, think about what I have just said.  Are you agreeing to be less than you are?  Are you agreeing to be second rate, in order to please someone that did not really know or like you in the first place?  Do you accept that everyone else is always right, and you are always wrong?  If the answer is yes, then you are the equivalent of a battered partner.  You are agreeing to be life’s punchbag.  Just say no.

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