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Monday, September 24, 2007

Crisis in Morale: The Grass is Always Greener Syndrome

I've recently read about a study that concluded we all have a natural equilibrium level of happiness, that can be temporarily tipped for the better or worse, but we always gravitate back toward our natural happiness sweet spot.

I've also noticed that people, myself included, are grand optimists about the unknown. My personal happiness is strongly connected to the quantity and/or quality of opportunities I perceive I have in any situation. Which naturally leads me to be very happy at the beginning of things - friendships, jobs, etc. But that happiness fades as I learn many unknown areas that I thought might be doors to utopia are really just brick walls. As this occurs, my instinct is to jump the fence into the next pasture kicks in.

Is this just immaturity? Does a wiser person than me know that "opportunity is where you are" and that greener pastures are just an illusion? Does it matter at all if we all just end up at our equilibrium level of happiness anyway?

The point of all this that I have what many perceive to be a dream job that I think I want to leave. My job is really super fun about 1/5th of the time, however, most of the time I'm pretty bored, and occasionally (and seemingly more frequently) I'm really miserable. I'm getting the itch to move on to something else but is it stupid to leave? Its like the turning point on a game show when you have to decide to take your $100,000 and run or go for the $1 Million. I really want the million...

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Minneapolis Tornado

I think there was a Tornado on my block tonight. Here are some photos:

north neighbor.jpg
A tree fell in in the yard of our the neighbor on the north

across street.jpg
A tree fell across the street

south neighbor.jpg
A tree fell on our south neighbors house

our house.jpg
Our house (in the middle on the right) unscathed - probably because the tree in front of our house had dutch elm disease and was cut down a couple years ago.

tree on truck.jpg
Just a couples house north of us next to the park; a guy was sitting in the cab of this truck when the tree fell on it. He was waiting out the storm to play a football game in the park. He's OK. They interviewed him on the news.

Dramatic, eh? Everyones OK. They didn't officially say there was a tornado, but only the one block to the east of us also had trees down, everywhere else is just wet.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Pirate Jesus Wants YOU!

To Come to the 2007 Minneapolis Pirate Pub Crawl on Oct. 6th!

I can't even say how fun last year was so here are some photos:

There were massive pirate migrations:

With rum specials at every bar:

Topped off with a drunken raunchy zombie vs. pirate dance off!

Does it get any better? Check out the website for more photos, a movie of last years zombie vs. pirate pub crawl, and details for the 2007 event. RSVP on the site!

See you there!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Cedar Lake

I'll be an idiot if I ever move away from Minneapolis. There are lakes, parks, streams, and rivers that can whisk you away all within the city limits. Here are a couple shots from today's excursion to Cedar Lake. These photos were taken with a Lensbaby 2.0.




Saturday, September 08, 2007

Random Portraits

My husband at our favorite restaurant

"Movie Star" me on Lake Minnetonka Today

and this picture just makes me laugh. I didn't take it, I found it somewhere on the internet.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Charles C. Mann

I heard Charles C. Mann speak at the George Wright Society Conference this spring and it completely changed the way I think about human history.

The pre-european western-hemisphere population size, sophistication, and magnitude of landscape alteration were all much more massive than I ever fathomed.

There are a couple interviews with him here and here. At the least the first link does a good job highlighting some of the interesting points he conveys in his book 1491.

This concurs with a recent discovery of mine: history is actually interesting and relevant! Its not all about dry names and dates and arbitrary discoveries and founding fathers; it's about hate and fear and sex and manipulation and lust and luck and power. Not exactly components of traditional public school curricula.

Image is from National Geographic

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Saturday, September 01, 2007

Creatures of the Deep

I've been toying with the idea of getting a deep-sea creature tattoo and ordered the book Creatures of the Deep for inspiration.

Its wonderful book chucked full of bizarre sciencey-goodness. Here's an excerpt:

In some anglerfish species, the male becomes a lifelong "parasite" of its prospective mate. The males jaws and skin around its mouth fuse with the female's body, leaving only a small space at the sides of the mouth for gas exchange. In time, the male's circulatory system becomes connected to the females and his internal organs and eyes degenerate. The female becomes the sole bread-winner, and the male, in essence, becomes a sort of non-retractable penis. It may not seem much of a life for the male either-but it neatly solves the problem of find one's mate in the dark depths.

Image from Raffles Museum News website