I think my brain was still on vacation last week. Life outside of work was very disorganized and procrastinatory. It seems like all I did was shop online and research and sleep.
New Year’s Eve
I spent New Year’s Eve hanging out in three Twitch streams at once and chatting on Discord while listening to this countdown podcast from NerdSync.
My coat arrived, but I didn’t like the velcro or its tubelike fit, so I’m returning it. I’ll stick with my old coat for now.
This year I want to study various aspects of thinking.
Right now on the theme of analysis and modeling, I’m reading Domain-Driven Design, Learning UML 2.0 and various UML-related specs, and Structured Analytic Techniques for Intelligence Analysis.
Last week on rationality I listened to Thinking, Fast and Slow, a look at how our conscious reasoning and unconscious intuition work and how they go wrong. I recommend it. This week I’m on Theory and Reality, an introduction to the philosophy of science.
Inspired by our visit to the Episcopal church on Christmas Eve, I researched liturgical churches in the area to try out over the next couple of months in case I feel the need for one in the future. I visited the first one New Year’s Eve and was surprised by the amount of Spanish in their service. It wasn’t really what I was looking for.
Looking at liturgical churches has gotten me reading about Orthodoxy again, mostly from the website of CJS Hayward, an old college acquaintance of mine.
Another book I’m reading off and on is Labyrinths, a collection of short stories and essays by Jorge Luis Borges. Last week while reading it, I realized he’s become one of my very favorite authors. When I’m looking for creative, philosophical fiction writers to read, I’m really looking for more Borgeses. Ted Chiang is one.
Borges was Argentinian, but his stories make me think of Eastern Europe, so I’ve been listening to Arvo Pärt while reading, and looking for more music like his led me to a new genre to explore, holy minimalism.
For Christmas I got the CD version of Aphex Twin’s Selected Ambient Works, Vol. II, an important album in the genre. I knew the CD was incomplete, and I’d bought one missing track, but I found out I was still missing a couple. Fortunately, I learned Aphex Twin now has the whole digital album for purchase at his online store. A combination of that and iTunes got me the rest of the tracks, and now I’ll be familiarizing myself with the completed album. It’s all fairly strange, but it has more variety than I expected.