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I've been preparing for this blog for a long time, years, gathering topics and constructing essays that have never seen the light. This transcontinental reporting is just a dry run and gives me an opportunity to practice working with the Wix site creation software and polish my writing skills. But I've got a metric shit ton of material in the wings. Science, education, art, history, sex, religion, politics, marriage, culture; if you think some of the stuff I've posted so far might be skating near the edge...  well the worst is yet to come.   

At its most fundamental level, a blogger is no different than some poor schlep who scribbles graffiti on a wall.  We all want to be noticed and we all think we have something to say.  The only difference being that I don't force people to read this blog.  

My perspective on things is often colored by the same personality traits that lead me to become a programmer. Many, if not most, programmers exist somewhere on the autism scale. It is the perfect profession for those strong in logic and weak in empathy and other social skills. Nerds do not have the reputation, that they do have, for no reason. As such, I often make observations that some might find offensive or judgmental or in poor taste. I will plead that this is not my fault. It is only recently that I have realized that for most people, the ability to "get along" comes naturally, and is not something established by trial and error and analysis as is the case with me. Many of my social skills are simply "clever tricks" that I have learned instead, as is the case with most people, unconscious natural reactions to social situations.  

This ability to exclude emotions from analysis can be both a blessing and a curse.  It can be very helpful in an academic settings.  In law school, many students did not perform as well as I did in exams because they were unable to divorce their feelings from their answer.  They answered the exam question not coldly and dispassionately, based on the law as it was, but rather on the law as they thought it should be.  

Nevertheless, I hesitate and cringe almost every time before hitting the post button because I know that people will jump to the wrong conclusion about what I am saying and assume that I feel a certain way about a topic when I don't feel that way at all. Still... I push the button.

So, when reading the posts, please understand that, unless I am explicitly judgmental in a blog post, no judgement is being made, but instead, like Oliver Sach's Anthropologist on Mars, I am making an observation about people as if they were an alien species. In fact, I toyed with the idea of naming the blog, People as Meercats, in order to emphasize that, for the most part, I am trying to be an observer of social behavior and not a judge of behavior or attitudes.  This whole problem is exacerbated by the fact (and here I am being very judgmental) that today certain groups in society enjoy an extraordinary privilege, in that not only is it taboo for one outside that group to criticize it, it is considered very bad manners to make any comment about that group whatsoever.   In my opinion, this portends an ultimately tragic outcome for the future of American society because it closes the door against any open and honest discussion about the problems which face us, and consequently, against any solutions. 

Finally, love, hate, faith and hope and all the other emotions are special in that they are, simultaneously, both figments of our imagination and as real as the chair on which I am sitting.  The behavior of people is the most fascinating thing in the world and I intend to write about it.





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