I have a usable Christmas list for my family now, but I still have a few things to research. One question is how to add non-Amazon products to my list, since the Amazon Assistant browser extension is defunct. I’ll try to finish the list this week so I can move on to updating my productivity system.
I flew to Texas for Kimberly’s memorial gathering, which went well. We held it at a family favorite barbecue restaurant, where I caught up with some old friends and met some new people from her life. And through the heartfelt sharing and the display of memorabilia I learned more about who she was. I learned that she double majored in college and still graduated early, which felt very typical of her. I learned she had dreams of going to law school before life took her in the direction of education. And I got a stronger sense of the chosen family she worked so hard to build.
Being there with the trappings of a memorial in the company of people who were close to her showed me why it matters that people gather to remember. It really does help move you toward closure, validating your feelings of loss and giving your loved one their due.
On Halloween I took a side trip from SCP readings through liminal spaces and the Backrooms. Liminal spaces are transitional places, such as hallways and waiting rooms. If you remove the people from them and treat them as a place to linger, they often gain an unsettling quality, although some of them can be comforting if you like to be alone. The Backrooms are a fictional world that has grown up around this concept.
For Halloween week, I set my Windows background to a slideshow of liminal space images, mostly from this article. I also watched some investigations into the original Backrooms photo and other popular liminal spaces, a playthrough of the game The Complex: Found Footage, and the impressively produced Backrooms series by Kane Pixels.
I also learned that unsettling yourself is a questionable idea when you’re already feeling stressed. It tends to raise your general level of anxiety.
You don’t even need to noclip through reality to get to an unending liminal space. If you walk the wrong way in a conference center, you can get there in real life.