Thursday, June 26, 2014

Regulus the Brilliant Multiple Star System and the Tired, Solo Human Blogger


For this entry, I just don't have that many pictures, and I'm not even going to try to find additional ones tonight. I might update this entry with additional ones I have the time and find some suitable images.

To be clear, it's quite immaterial to me whether anybody reads this entry, much less will only do so because it has pictures, pretty or otherwise, to break up the text.

If that's somebody's criteria for reading this blog (or anything), then I can't help them.

As it is, I'm feeling very chagrined over and tired with this blog. I've kept it for over 6 years now including the 4 years during which I've had my now-shaky Federal contracting job; the 3-1/2 years since that Cobalt incident that was really the farcical coda to the pointless "tragedy" of a seminal but ultimately meaningless event now over 10 years ago; and the 2 years since I rejoined the gym and lost the 42 pounds.

My blog namesake star, Regulus, and the Leo I Dwarf Galaxy (below in this image). Leo I Dwarf is a member of the Local Group and possibly one of the outlying satellite galaxies of the Milky Way Galaxy. Regulus ("Alpha Leonis") is actually a multiple (four) star system about 79 light years from Earth in the constellation Leo with Regulus A consisting of the really bright one -- a RAPIDLY spinning and hence very elongated blue-white giant -- and a nearbly invisible white dwarf plus a more distant quite dim binary pair called Regulus B and Regulus C.

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In that time, I posted a seemingly endless parade of vitriolic and ridiculously long and convoluted blog entries that have centered on the twin idiocies of America's brain-dead Manichean media-entertainment complex-inflamed politics and my own neuroses.

Among those neuroses have included aforementioned dumbass fixation; the period when I was a doughy marshmallow; and whenever the weather in the Washington, D.C., area was not to my liking, which is pretty much three-quarters of the time.

Above: A size and shape comparison of Regulus A to the Sun. The rapid spin of Regulus A causes the massive oblate-shaped distortion, not to mention gravity darkening in the equatorial region because the photosphere is cooler there than at the star's poles.  If Regulus A rotated about 16 percent faster, its centripetal acceleration would tear it apart.

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All of this was not just a massive waste of time, but it is now taking me an interminably time trying to "undo" by removed content.

Yes, I'm noting in those entries the removed and/or altered content. However, I'm no where near done, although I got the worst of the overheated and hateful late spring and summer of 2011 entries "edited" (i.e., May, June, July), but with so many more to go.

Aurora borealis display over Great Slave Lake as seen from Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, Oct. 2008. Photo by Matt Kawei, source here.

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As for the politics, trying to follow and comment on that is a soul-draining experience because America is fundamentally a ridiculous and low-information, high-fructose corn-syrup entertainment, hysterical nation presently splitting into two reality camps (with a bunch of even lower-information "swing" voters in between) that probably presages some early-to-mid 21st Century version of another Civil War (almost certainly far less bloody and barbaric than the 19th Century version but potentially more enduring in terms of enduring regional breakups and confederations since America itself just doesn't make much sense as a coherent country by the late 21st / early 22nd Centuries, though I could be wrong).

The skyline of Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, June 2, 2005. Picture by Trevor MacInnis.

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To be clear, I don't see "both sides" as equally blameworthy -- I'm NOT of a Fred Hiatt / Ron Fournier / Washington Consensus Mindset, or as Paul Krugman so brilliantly put it, the "views differ on shape of Earth" mainstream corporate media narrative for even basic factual and/or morally right-versus-wrong questions -- and instead clearly see a tremendous imbalance tilted toward the demographically challenged and racially and culturally panicked but overly powerful right.

Anyway, putting that aside, the point is that I don't like having such an extensive online written record of miserable and vitriolic ramblings that serve no point -- and in fact could prove adverse in certain ways.

This blog has become the equivalent of the obsessive written journal I kept for nearly 15 years before it abruptly stopped. Eventually, I thrashed all but two large folders (binders) of what at one time had been scores of them. (I recall my father screaming -- shrieking -- at me when I was writing in it crazily on a car trip:

"WRITTEN IN WIND!! WRITTEN IN WIND!!"

It wasn't that he was wrong -- he was, in fact, correct. Rather, it's the fact that he was then and is now such a screaming lunatic -- in between living as a wanton hedonist who has always done whatever he wants whenever. (My mom wouldn't have screamed that -- just thrown it out when I wasn't around.)

Oh, yes, I also had numerous folders that contained a weird "fictitious stock market" that I meticulously kept for years. I trashed that as well.

A glass of wine at the bar at the Lincoln restaurant, Washington, D.C., 6:42PM June 22, 2014.

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I went to the gym earlier tonight and while I got in a full 6-mile / hour-long treadmill jog, my weightlifting was not nearly as good as on Monday night. I also skipped the pool outright. On Monday, I only had about 10 minutes in the pool because I had to meet Jim, who has since returned to Milwaukee. Naturally, failed to communicate in a meaningful way about where to meet -- I said at the Anthony Bowen YMCA and THEN we'd go somewhere, but he went to Marvin by the corner of 14th and U Streets NW for a few drinks, which Jim bought (I was flat broke until Wednesday). I only knew that because I happened to ask the front desk guy at the gym, who recognized the description I gave of gym.

I won't see Jim now for quite some time -- either the end of August or not until December.

It was at Marvin that this fellow I met there last time told me about the two quasi-speakeasies that I mentioned in my previous entry.

My favorite (and spooky) "Zion Building" -- still basically abandoned after all these years -- at 1017 12th Street NW, Washington, D.C., 6:46PM June 24, 2014.

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Oh, yes, on Tuesday evening, I walked from L'Enfant Plaza back toward home (since I didn't want to spend my last few dollars until I got paid on Metro fare). (The picture directly above was taken on that walk.) I walked past my place (well, a few blocks over) and up the hill of 13th Street to Wendy's place in Columbia Heights. I did so in order to walk Tacoma, since Wendy still cannot really do it.

Wendy and I then had a nice conservation even as she made some light dinner and I had two beers before I walked home. Of note, her sprained ankle appears to be slowly mending but it's still going to be 3 to 5 days, I guestimate, before she can really start to get around and go back to work (she's been allowed to telework during this time). I think Gary and I are taking her grocery shopping over the weekend -- at least that's the plan. Gary looked in on her and Tacoma tonight; she has a friend doing it tomorrow night; and I'll do it Friday evening.

Returning to tonight, I should have went into the pool but once again my stomach / nether regions were a bit perturbed and I wanted to get home. So I walked the short way home in a showery semi-downpour as a line of thunderstorms quickly swept through the D.C. area.

NWS radar mosaic for the northeastern quadrant of the U.S., 0218UTC June 26, 2014.

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The line actually extended up toward Baltimore and then in a wider band across eastern Pennsylvania, northwestern New Jersey, and southern New York into New England (see above radar mosaic image). It was basically just a warm, showery spell with some vivid cloud-to-cloud lightning and reverberating thunder. I can't imagine more than 0.1 inch fell in most places (and the usual 0.01" or perhaps the signature "Trace" officially was recorded at KDCA).

Updated 9:36AM 6/26/2014: So it turns out KDCA had 0.45" of rain and KBWI had 0.79" while KIAD had Trace; KDMH had 0.52" of rain. End of update.

I'm home now, having had a late dinner and "watching" -- or rather, listening -- to The Golden Girls reruns on Hallmark Channel. As I've mentioned, my TV is on the fritz. I got paid today but I will not buy a new frickin' TV when I have the very real prospect of being laid off / rendered "hourly, as needed" in the next few weeks.

I am even considering just getting rid of cable TV -- it's a flippin' waste of money considering I watch all of four channels, at least one of which (Me-TV) is digital over-the-air (and perhaps the second one, too, Antenna TV). I'd keep just my internet through RCN.

As for Thursday, well, there is an after work offsite company meeting at a bar -- Laughing Man Tavern -- by Metro Center.

Lastly, but probably most importantly, I want to discuss my work situation. At this point, nothing has been decided and no real resolution is forthcoming. Though I have done a fair amount of client-requested work, my own billability issues are dire this pay period owing to lack of sufficient work and, for the work I have, no permission to charge anything (the person who would do that is, NATURALLY, out all this week).

I also realize that even if this is "resolved," there really is no larger resolution for the longer haul -- just a series of maybes that never come to fruition, which is basically life, at least mine. The point is, I'm on my own, and if I am rendered "hourly, as needed," the only one who could or would help me is me. I'm just alone in this world.

But to do this, I would need to get a different job, even though that is something I don't want to do because I like my current one, including the work I do, my coworkers, and the office environment itself.

I would also need to do it in a hurry, but the configuration of the job market and larger American economy in the 2010s makes a mockery of that possibility.

This isn't 1975.

Oh, and hitting the "send" button on emailed job applications sends those emails and their contents across an event horizon into a black hole. In the case of USA Jobs, it's a supermassive black hole with an impressively expansive event horizon.

(This is the point that crappy, little robot Wall-P, who has NO CLUE what it's like to NOT have some six-figure salary as a legal tool of the corporate oligarchical elite, would start in with that monotonic rapid fire, "Dude. Dude. Eh. Eh. Ehehehe. Ya gotta' keep looking. It's all failure until it's success. Is what it is. Eh. Eh. Ehehe.")

I kinda hate it when someone with easy millions and a total lack of real human empathy or understanding on, well, anything beyond just money and power -- having spent his entire life in service to the ultra-rich (i.e., the 0.01% and/or corporate oligarchical paymasters) -- and whose spiritual depth consists of Friday night Miller Lites and depraved human cocking UFC fighting, deigns in their arrogance to pontificate about how I should live my life and should react to situations. It's kind of a jackass thing to do.

Truly in the middle of nowhere: The short of Great Slave Lake in Canada's Northwest Territories.

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Now I am fairly confident that I could be a writer with some success, but getting to that point in one's adult life has always been a very hard slog -- and in our bogus techno-glibertarian future-present, it is well nigh impossible.

Anyway, if and when my job does end, it will be passed down quickly from on high because of a lack of billable work (I'll just be a company liability), and it will last an interminable time or -- based on how things turn out for the company in the next 6 months -- potentially permanently.

Yours truly by the Spanish Steps at the dead-end of 22nd Street NW by S Street NW, Washington, D.C., 4:55PM June 22, 2014.

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As for my familial and financial support, well, there is none.

For the latter, I have a paltry 401k that would not be available for months (and who knows how much would be taken in middle men-skimming "fees" before I saw the "funds" touch my account.

For the former, well, let's be honest: I could die and my mother would be upset at having to take the time off from work, not to mention deeply worried at potentially having to incur funeral expenses; meanwhile, my father is so far into his own altered reality; that the fact of my death wouldn't even penetrate. That is the reality of a 70-something lunatic living in a trailer by the sea in unincorporated Flagler County, Florida with his even more girlfriend in a life that consists of nighttime drunken karaoke, daytime knock-off Oxycontin, and anytime episodic 911 calls.

Neither have the slightest clue or -- from different angles -- interest in what I do or how I live my life. Oh, and there is no one else -- no wife or "significant other" -- and never will be.

That's my world.

And no one is going to help me. No friends, no nobody. I'm on my own. I finally realize that.

Looking south down 14th Street NW from W Street NW on a showery, warm night, Washington, D.C., 10:06PM June 25, 2014.

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OK, I think that's all for now.

I was going to write more including the first of my planned "Wall-P and Me" installments (including introducing the cast of characters, each one worse than the previous one). However, all of the proposed short stories are dark and weird -- indeed, too weird in the context of this entry. So instead I'll just say "Life sucks" as a conclusion to this entry.

Wall-P marries enters a legally-binding contract with The Staff.

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My next planned update will be either Friday night or, more likely, Saturday. I'm exhausted now and need to sleep.

--Regulus

2 comments:

к.нео.физ.де.му said...

dude,

sorry to hear about your job situation.

hope it improves with the beginning of the new fiscal year.

Regulus said...

Thank you, Mike.

I had a short-term reprieve this week with a full two weeks of work that should carry me into mid-July, by which point other things might start to come into focus.

I had a strange dream involving you the other night. I'll relate it when I see you.

To that end, we should meet up at some point.