Monday, October 31, 2011
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Sunday, October 23, 2011
Friday, October 21, 2011
The Process of Buying a Gun in Las Vegas, and Other Assorted Musings: 30 Days of Blogging... Day 12-ish
Monday, October 17, 2011
Sunday, October 16, 2011
Saturday, October 15, 2011
The Alchemist picked up a book that someone in the caravan had brought. Leafing through the pages, he found a story about Narcissus.
The alchemist knew the legend of Narcissus, a youth who daily knelt beside a lake to contemplate his own beauty. He was so fascinated by himself that, one morning, he fell into the lake and drowned. At the spot where he fell, a flower was born, which was called the narcissus.
But this was not how the author of the book ended the story.
He said that when Narcissus died, the Goddesses of the Forest appeared and found the lake, which had been fresh water, transformed into a lake of salty tears.
"Why do you weep?" the Goddesses asked.
"I weep for Narcissus," the lake replied.
"Ah, it is no surprise that you weep for Narcissus," they said, "for though we always pursued him in the forest, you alone could contemplate his beauty close at hand."
"But..... was Narcissus beautiful?" the lake asked.
"Who better than you to know that?" the Goddesses said in wonder, "After all, it was by your banks that he knelt each day to contemplate himself!!"
The lake was silent for some time.
Finally it said:
"I weep for Narcissus, but I never noticed that Narcissus was beautiful. I weep because, each time he knelt beside my banks, I could see, in the depths of his eyes, my own beauty reflected."
"What a lovely story," the alchemist thought.
Thursday, October 13, 2011
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Today was a perfect example of this. I was getting my haircut at a place near my house, and the woman cutting my hair was making small talk. She commented that I look like a college student, to which I explained that I'd just graduated from ISU. She asked if I was looking for a job, and I told her how I was intending on going to China and all that. The conversation from there went like so:
Monday, October 10, 2011
This is not to say I was having second thoughts about going. I'm quite sure that China is where I want to be for the long-term, not to mention where there will be economic opportunities in greater abundance during my lifetime. It simply dawned on me that this would probably be a bit more complicated of a move than I'd previously thought. However, very shortly after realizing this, I got a pretty surprising phone call, from a +86 number. For those who aren't familiar, +86 is the country code for China. That is, at noon on a Monday in Chicago, Illinois, I was getting a call from someone in China, where it was 1:00am on Tuesday morning. Needless to say I was intrigued, and answered the phone so enthusiastically that I'd imagine the guy on the other line was more startled than a rural Chinese person seeing a 6'1" white guy. Or something like that.
Sunday, October 9, 2011
Saturday, October 8, 2011
Friday, October 7, 2011
"In Belgium, the relatively well-established Moroccan-Belgian community has a birthrate two and a half times higher than the native Belgian one. In Brussels, where a quarter of the residents are foreign citizens, the seven most common given boy's names were Mohamed, Adam, Rayan, Ayoub, Mehdi, Amine, and Hamza"
Thursday, October 6, 2011
"these hills, with neither roads nor navigable rivers, detached the village from the world at large. Even as late as the early twentieth century an event as momentous as the death of the emperor in 1908 did not percolate this far, and Mao found out only two years afterwards when he left Shaoshan."