I Am Neither the Archives nor an Embedded Journalist

I’m packing to move, but taking a little break. Tomorrow we’ll be renting a U-Haul 5×8 trailer, like this one:

It’s not big enough for most furniture, but hopefully it’ll fit our personal effects. I still need to clean up my computer desk and put it up for sale if it can be disassembled.

Of course some things will have to be gotten rid of, and I find it hard to let go of things. Even the boxes things came in. I have to be really choosy about that – only collectors would care, and if the item isn’t all that collectible, the box should go and simply the item come with. Boxes take up precious volume, and as you can probably see, we don’t have a lot.

Schematic of U-Haul’s 5×8 trailer

I just have to keep telling myself, “yes, maybe these things have value in some circumstance, maybe this will be forgotten if I let go of it, but I am not the archives.” Not that I want to be an archivist by any means. There’s always something more that should be archived, and having to prioritize isn’t my idea of fun, although life isn’t just fun and games either.

I really feel for this guy. I think his obsession with Elvis is theoretically legitimate. Unfortunately, it exceeded his awareness of practical considerations.

It would be nice if homes in real life were like those in Minecraft. Need more space? Just build more! I typically expand underground, so as to preserve the aesthetic of the starter house, which is typically my girlfriend’s department anyway.

Here she is in our most recent world trying to walk past me while I was fishing:

A fine catch

I’m a hoarder in Minecraft, too – I save everything that drops, including netherrack. But in Minecraft, I can always add more storage. And it may come as a news flash to some, but life isn’t Minecraft. It’s not even Minecraft Earth.

Okay, break over. And I won’t play Minecraft. I’ve also had to block Twitter on my Pi-hole – I’m obsessed with what’s happening in Ukraine, and having a good amount of unstructured time yesterday I spent way too much of it as a subject of their alrogitihm.

But I am not actually an important conduit of information. Social media simply facilitates the illusion that I am. It’s the power equivalent of a parasocial relationship, like that seen between independent creators and their fans, with the creators being sometimes reachable (especially if you give them money) but also out of reach when it comes to that actual friendship part. And similar to how a parasocial relationship primarily and literally enriches the creator, my parapower relationship with social media does the same for the platform owners. That’s one reason why I desire to own my own means of expression, although I am renting the virtual machine behind all this for a nominal fee.

As people who’ve known me for a long time IRL would likely know, I once spent six months in Ukraine as part of a Canada World Youth special pilot project. The year was 2005. I had a lot to say about it then, but almost 17 years have passed, and the little knowledge I had of it then is almost nothing now. Still, I might venture some opinions at some point. One very encouraging thing is that Russophone Ukrainians and Ukrainian-speaking Ukrainians seem to be on the same page – neither want to live under Russian-style rule by thieves and gangsters. 1(Check out Kamil Galeev’s Twitter if you want the details on how Russia really works. It has the outward form of a democracy but virtually none of the substance.)

When I was in Ukraine, there was palpable animosity between the two groups – you could get beat up for speaking Ukrainian in Kharkiv (so I heard from a student at the university in which I was placed as a volunteer), and in Odesa you would get bad service, as I and my travelling companion personally experienced. I wouldn’t expect the latter to have changed much, but hopefully the former did.

And as for Russia and Belarus, I look forward to the day when our rivalries are once again strictly on the ice.

Okay, break actually over.

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