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Friday, 27 October 2006
Still Alive . . . I Think

'Lo there Fred 

Just a short note--I am still here.  I have some more poetry to post, eventually, and a few more paragraphs for my novel in progress.  Perhapps someday I will get around to posting these.  Though, probably not until after the holiday season (and, no, I haven't changed my feelings about this time of year).  'Til then.

Yours, Jeff

Posted by woodjeff at 8:31 PM MDT
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Wednesday, 3 December 2003
On It Goes

Happy Hollidays to you Fred.

Yes, what a time of year. It's December now, so feel free to sing Christmas songs, and put up decorations, and pay attention to the store advertisements. I won't mock. No sarcasm. The November casualties of the over commercialization of Christmas have faded away into the past. Veterans Day has gone by unnoticed and Thanksgiving was remembered for a day, if only due to our over-gorged stomachs that were still complaining the next morning.

You can now pull out your Christmas list without fearing my ridicule. And by all means, when someone explains that they don't want anything for Christmas, don't believe them. Pester and cajole them until they finally break down and explain that socks are always nice, there's always a need for socks. And when this doesn't sound materialistic enough, when you're afraid that if you get them socks they'll be disappointed in you, then keep right on probing for more until they turn around and ask you what you want for Christmas. Then you can pull out your list and begin at the top, with little asides about who you think will get you what.

When they sigh, and roll their eyes, and walk away, remember that their just humbugs. They haven't gotten into the spirit of Christmas yet. Maybe once they hear "White Christmas" for the hundredth time in half as many hours, they'll realize the folly of their ways and sing along. Maybe, just maybe, it has nothing to do with an (albeit idealistic) sense of what Christmas is really all about. I'm sure that they just hate Christmas because of all the sappy, goody two-shoes, gift giving. I'm sure they don't believe that the symbolism of Christmas has been corrupted on such a large scale that it's actually a bit depressing. I'm certain that they are just embittered by some horrible Christmas memory. Maybe "Santa Clause" didn't give them what they wanted one year.

It couldn't possibly be that they are just so tired of stores starting their Christmas campaigns in October. They couldn't possibly prefer solitude during the Hollidays. They couldn't possibly not want anything of any monetary value.

Ah, but who am I kidding. I don't actually know how I feel about Christmas. I understand what it means and agree with that aspect of it. I see what's happened to society on a whole and despise that aspect of it. Yet, I don't know how I feel about it. Don't know that I ever will. Christmas will remain one big ambiguity in my mind. I guess that's just the way it goes. So when I don't tell you what I want . . . well, it might just be that I don't know what I want.

Yours, Jeff

Posted by woodjeff at 2:04 PM MST
Updated: Friday, 27 October 2006 8:34 PM MDT
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Wednesday, 5 November 2003
Not Today, Thank You
'Lo there Fred,

Ah, the wonderful month of November. The "holiday" (and, yes, I'm using quotes exactly the way I want) Halloween is finally past and gone, and Thanksgiving is well on its way. It's the start of winter around here--no matter what the calendar says. We've had a small snow storm, temperatures have dropped, and the snow will start to stay on the ground in a matter of weeks--assuming all goes well.

Of course, on the other hand, Christmas Items have been on the store shelves for almost three weeks now. November also mark a certain yearly occurrence that I'm not always very eager to greet. With the changing seasons comes a weakened immune system, and consequently, sickness in the form of the flu and cold bugs. Did I mention the whole commercialization of Christmas thing?

Ah, yes . . . I just "love" November. 'Til next time.

Yours, Jeff

Posted by woodjeff at 1:14 PM MST
Updated: Wednesday, 5 November 2003 1:18 PM MST
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Tuesday, 28 October 2003
Dreams . . . and Things . . . Part II
'Lo again, Fred.

I've read the last entry and find that I do still agree with the main points that I was trying to make. It would appear, therefore, that I was at least reasonably lucid at the time I wrote it. This fixes the whole circular logic problem. As mentioned in the previous entry, this does not imply the complete lack of flaws in my logic; it simply corrects the possibility of that particular circular flaw.

Now, with that said, let me get back to the main point. How much does the dream reveal about a person? (Notice the fine italics, eh? The wonders of Html code . . . what a pain.) Once again, I'm using my special definitions both of the word dream and the word person. And, once again, I'm proposing that it doesn't reveal very much.

Here's the logic behind this idea. First, the main part of a person is this concept of the mind. Not the brain. Second, dreams (these falling into the first category of dreams--or, simply dreams--and not the second, unnamed category) are mainly the effect of the brain unwinding, sorting, and reviewing, etc. the information gathered since the last sleep cycle. This is not to say that the mind does not influence the brain, simply that it does not have a significant influence.

Ah, so this brings us to the next question. How can I possibly say that the mind (yeah, yeah, time to quit using italics) has such little influence over the brain at the times of these dreams? Well, I cannot assert this with any certainty. I currently have no evidence that would support such a claim, and I do not foresee ever having such evidence.

This of course leave's the initial question unanswered. "How much does a dream reveal about a person? I have to assume that some is revealed, if for no other reason than the fact that we recognize elements of the dream. We often recognize people, places, or emotions, etc. that come from our past experience.

Now, if you weren't aware that this entry is in my "Random Thoughts and Vague References" section of my site, then you might question why I would even bring up this question, if I had no way of actually answering it. Well, guess what. Random thoughts. I have no obligation to explain myself.

But, I will. I had this dream not too long ago. In this dream, I was being blamed for something for which, in my waking moments, I know I'm not responsible. I was also accepting this blame, in my dream. Part of my sub-conscience still blames me for this occurrence. But I know that I'm not to blame. The part that is me knows that I am not to blame. Therefore, while this dream reveals information about . . . well about my fears, really, it doesn't say anything about me.

That's my main point. A dream can reveal things about a person's fears or desires, etc. that the person is able to overcome or repress. But, because these are part of the limitations of the flesh, part of the brain and not the mind, then the dream will reveal very little about that mind, about that person.

Well, there we have it. My skewed logic. If you have any comments, feel free to post them, as always. 'Til next time.

Yours, Jeff

Posted by woodjeff at 9:33 PM MST
Updated: Tuesday, 28 October 2003 9:47 PM MST
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Thursday, 16 October 2003
Dreams . . . and Things
'Lo again, Fred.

Well, I've still got that stupid cold/flu thing. Now, however, it's abated to just a wretched cough. No, no sympathy, no pity . . . really--I'm okay; *cough cough* I'll be fine. *hehehe*

Oh, right--the title. All of a sudden I'm debating whether I want to write what I set out to write. Hmm . . . it's never a good idea to write while in delirium. Then again, that's kind of the point I was going for. See, dreams are the stories you tell yourself when you're delirious. Okay, when you're asleep, but who's keeping track. After all, sleep is simply the end result of delirium. I know, I know. That's not what's at question here. I'm getting off topic.

Which, of course, brings up the valid point: What is the topic? Ah, if only I knew. Okay, okay, already. Dreams. That's the topic. Dreams.

It's a topic with a question. A question that gets at the heart of my earlier insecurity of writing while delirious. How much does the dream reveal about a person? Or, subsequently, how much would I reveal about myself if writing while delirious?

Now I've written myself into a corner. At the heart of these "revelations" is truth. Yes, I'm using quotes. I want to distance myself from the very idea of the word in quotes and every context it would imply as well as every implication derived from any such or any other context. Hence the corner. Okay, I know, delirium fully evident, now.

Allow me to rephrase. First--I propose that very little can be learned about a person from a dream. I'd visually emphasize the words person and dream if I wanted to take the time and write this whole thing in Html (which I'm not going to do). This is because I have very specific ideas of simply dreams, and the definition of a person. For the latter, refer to my essay on the "Eternal Nature Of Humankind," linked on the left as "My Essay On The Eternal Nature Of Man." For the prior, all that needs to be known is that I place dreams into two different categories: dreams--or simply dreams, or other such diminutive references--and another category that I'll not name (the second category does not, in my mind, fall under the strict definition of a dream, even though it would seem to occur while the body is asleep, even though the event occurs in a dream-like state). I'm speaking here of dreams, not the other.

Moving along. The rephrase-al. First, very little can be learned about a person from a dream (or while delirious). Second, the first point is due to the lack of truth about the person suffering from the dream or delirium. Third, and here's the corner, if the first two points are true, then very little truth can be learned from this delirious entry.

Follow that to its logical conclusion, and you end up negating the premises for the lack of truth in dreams and delirium. This would imply that you can learn a lot about someone from that person's dreams and delirious ramblings because there is truth in these. This means, and here is the part where I've painted myself into that corner previously mentioned, that my previous points are actually true. I think you can follow the never ending cycle on your own from here.

There is of course a very simple resolution to this conundrum. It's directly related to my level of lucidity. If I read this while I'm certain I'm lucid, and still agree with my original line of logic, then the whole circular thing is negated. My logic may still have flaws, but it won't be the circular flaw.

With that in mind, I'm going to post this entry, as is, and examine it sometime when I'm not half asleep, and actually complete the idea I set out on. 'Till then.

Yours, Jeff

Posted by woodjeff at 12:51 AM MDT
Updated: Tuesday, 28 October 2003 9:33 PM MST
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Thursday, 2 October 2003
. . . Blechh . . .
Hey there Fred.

Just wanted to let you know that I'm not entirely neglecting you. It's just that I'm struggling through some sort of cold/flu thing. So, I got nothin' . . . for now, at least. Be patient. 'Till next time.

Yours, Jeff

Posted by woodjeff at 11:43 PM MDT
Updated: Thursday, 2 October 2003 11:43 PM MDT
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Tuesday, 23 September 2003
Competition. Yes? No? Plus? Delta?
'Lo there, Fred.

Now, as I already mentioned at an earlier time, I am not a very consistent writer. Therefore, I make no excuses for not having written in . . . well, however long it's been. Nor do I plan to make any excuses if, and when I don't write twice (or more) the amount since the last time I wrote. I may explain this little tidbit over and over again, but I will not make excuses. This is simply the way it is.

With that out of the way, let me continue on with this entry. Competition. I don't understand it. I never have, and chances are I never will. However, I know it exists. It can--and let me specify that this is very rarely for me--be entertaining to witness.

First, let me explain why I don't like competition. One, I have found that--in general--competition tends to bring out the worst in the participants of the sport. Two--and again, I have found this generally to be the case, as I have with all of the points I'm making--competition tends to bring out the worst in the spectators. At this point I could stop and demonstrate why this is true using specific proofs and examples such as a certain hockey game or a specific Olympian who was murdered because it was perceived that this Olympian lost the game for the country and so on. I could take time to go through these specifics and more, but I shan't. Three, it is the general bad feelings caused by points one and two that make it un-enjoyable for me not only to participate in, but also to spectate (is that even a word?) at an event.

That being said, let me just make mention that I know there are good points to competition, positive goals. I even agree with those goals. Competition gives you a ruler by which you can measure your own progress. It motivates you to improve yourself. There are several more. Just ask any PE teacher (or coach) to justify the need for physical education in secondary schools, and they'll give you a list that would be very comparable to the positive reasons for competition.

However, I have found that in spite of the justifiable causes for "friendly" competition, there quickly comes into existence such a feeling of bad blood, that those desired outcomes are often ignored. Spectators and participators alike focus so much energy onto the sentiment of "me good, you bad," that those altruistic termini are discarded by the wayside and exchanged for the fodder that is the insult, the put-down, the come-back, the trash-talk, the fight, the arguments over rules and plays and goals, and so on, and so on, and so on.

As a result, I do not like, do not participate in, do not spectate (there's that non?-word again) at competitions. And yet. . . . I'm being trained to a new program with the company with which I am employed. The training will last for five to six weeks. There are two other classes that will be doing the same training at the same time. Already, the teachers of these classes are instigating a general spirit of competition between said classes. While I cannot even begin to communicate to you how much I absolutely loath any form of competition, I found myself enjoying it. Specifically, I found myself enjoying one certain exchange between my teacher and the teacher of another class. This exchange was playfully humiliating (that brings to mind similar phrases that seem to contradict themselves that I could discuss for several entries, or at least one). Part of me abhorred the display. Yet, another, darker part of me enjoyed it. Of course, because I recognized that I enjoyed something that I also loathed, this recognition made me loath the display--and, consequently, competition--that much more.

Well, I'll have to look at this more in depth when I'm not falling asleep. I could also spend several more entries on my own contradictory self nature, and I probably will. Until next time.

Yours, Jeff

Posted by woodjeff at 1:14 AM MDT
Updated: Thursday, 25 September 2003 1:00 AM MDT
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Friday, 19 September 2003
Houston, we are a go . . . I think
Well, well, well. My disjointed little world is a little less so, now. More or less, at least. There are links on all of my pages to all of the other pages. Of course, my real world only continues to become more and more disjointed. Such is life.

Quite frankly though, I'm not quite sure why I do this. I mean, I'm not sure why I want to keep up four seperate pages, seperate sites, with seperate agendas. I'm a horrible writter. And, by horrible I mean inconsistent. I'm also a horrible speller. And, by horrible I mean incredibly dreadful.

Ok, so it's mostly my inconsistencies that get me down. I've been meaning to update my essay page for so long I think that I've forgotten what it actually says. I haven't written on my novel page for so long I think I've forgotten the plot (not to worry, I realy haven't forgotten, but . . . you know what I mean). I am at such a writers block with these poems that I'm working on that I'm not sure I'll ever finish them to my satisfaction. And then there's this. My online Fred.

So yes, Fred, Random Thoughts and Vague References is up and running interlinked with the rest of my disjointed little world. Ready to be viewed by the public, the victims of happenstance who stumble across it's entries. Yes, Houston, we are a go . . . I think. Until next time.

Yours, Jeff

Posted by woodjeff at 3:45 PM MDT
Updated: Friday, 19 September 2003 3:48 PM MDT
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Tuesday, 16 September 2003
Connecting in 3 . . . 2 . . . 1 . . .
Ok, ok. Here's the deal. I thought about it last night, and I've come to the conclusion that there's no sense in keeping this web log if I don't interconnect it with the rest of my disjointed little world. Consequently, since my other pages do occasionaly receive attention, there is the remote chance that someone might actually stumble across this . . . this . . . thing, for lack of a better word.

Which brings me to my next point. The editor that is provided by Tripod is pretty basic. If I were comfortable with HTML, I could post these entries as such. Even then, though, there is still no spell checker. Since I'm too lazy to to use an editor like Front Page and then copy over the HTML code to this editor, not only do you not get nicely formatted text with bold and everything, but you also have to put up with my horrible spelling. So please, if you're going to leave a comment, no pointing out spelling errors.

Next, this weblog falls directly under an abstract concept that I like to refer to as Fred. When You see me address an entry as such, I am addressing this abstract concept; or rather, I am speaking to this abstract concept. Which brings me to you--any and all who may happen to read these entries. If you feel more comfortable with the idea that I am writing with the thought that you are among my audience of readers (and therefore, that I am addressing you), then the easiest way to go about doing that is to consider yourself part of Fred, or, that is to say, think of Fred as being the audience that I am addressing.

On the other hand, if you would prefer the darker side, and want to believe that you have somehow gotten access to some secret hidden part of me, without my knowledge, then simply think of Fred as an actual person, and these entries are actual corespondences to him (or her), and you're reading them without my consent.

Not that this little asside actually means anything. If you prefer the one view, you will automaticaly approach the entries as such, and visa-versa (or however it happens to be spelled).

The main points to this whole entry are first, to let you know that I'm connecting it with the rest of my disjointed world. The links will be modified shortly on all of my pages. Seconod, if you see me address Fred, this is not an actual person, but if you would rather think of Fred as such, then by all means.

Yours, Jeff

Posted by woodjeff at 10:28 AM MDT
Updated: Tuesday, 16 September 2003 5:26 PM MDT
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Monday, 15 September 2003
Anyone Out There?
My greetings to anyone who's happened to stumble upon this. Also, my appologies. The title of this blog (not the individual entry) sums up the subject matter to which I intend to stick: none.

Along the same lines, I have no intention of writing regular entries (come on people, I can't even write regularly in my own journal). I'll let you decide whether that is good or bad news. I'm not even sure that I'll keep this blog running. It is here for purely experimental purposes. Consequently, I have yet to link this blog to my disjointed little world of other pages to which I do not regularly attend.

With that, I'll close this entry. Best of luck to all.

Yours, Jeff

Posted by woodjeff at 6:42 PM MDT
Updated: Monday, 15 September 2003 6:42 PM MDT
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