jc blog - tales of a modern-day nomadic hunter-gatherer

Follow jcomeau_ictx on Twitter This is the weblog of Intrepid Wanderer. You never know what you might find here; graphic descriptions of bodily functions, computer programming secrets, proselytizing for the antichrist, miscellaneous ranting and kvetching, valuable information on living off the land... if you don't share my rather weird interests you may want to try slashdot instead.

You can consider my Del.icio.us links an extension to my blog, as are my LifeTango goals and my other to-do items. My to-buy list is also public, but only for sharing any useful ideas that might be there; I'm not requesting charity, neither do I offer it.

You can find me easily in google searches, as jcomeau, jcomeau_ictx, or jcomeauictx. There are lots of other jcomeaus, but AFAIK I'm the only jcomeau_ictx out there so far.

If you want to comment on anything you see here, try the new Facebook comments, reachable by clicking the "[comment]" link at the end of each post. If for some reason that isn't working, go ahead and email me, jc.unternet.net. You know what to do with the first dot. Make the 'subject' line something reasonably intelligent-looking or it goes plunk! into the spambasket unread.

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MrCreditRepair.biz will fix your credit rating!

2005-07-30-1614Z

Last night I invited myself to a party with some female friends, made a complete ass of myself, and they're still my friends! New Mexico has some wonderful people.

After enough beer and Jim Beam, I got naked and started dancing around the fire. I was hoping to get the others to do the same but nawwww... oh well, it was worth a shot. This morning after breakfast I relearned not to mix whiskey and beer. Ugh. Hope I don't need to spell out the details for you... I bought a comforter at the second-hand store yesterday afternoon and used it as a bed. Much better than sleeping on the hard dirt where my tent is planted. One of these days I might even get someone to cuddle in there with me...

This morning my Free Wireless Initiative kicked off with its first installation, at the Patio Cafe in beautiful downtown Columbus, NM. Bring your wireless laptop or PDA and check your email while munching down one of their famous $1.99 breakfast burritos. [comment]

2005-07-29-1429Z

Was I ever wrong. Not only was I still stuck in the Mexico City timezone, an hour ahead of NM, nothing opens till 8AM here, even though Pancho Villa's sign says 7:30. But finally I've got a breakfast burrito down my gullet, and am working on my 2nd refill of coffee. Great to be alive.

The ratio of men to women interested in polyamorous relationships in any given area, based upon very unscientific browsing of aff, seems to be somewhere between 30 to 1, to around 10 to 1. That would make things similar to the situation on Luna in Heinlein's The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. But maybe, once one woman in town has amassed her army of 20 lovers, others would get jealous and want to get in on the action. Women in general seem to be more sensitive to slurs such as "slut" and "whore" than men are; it will take a strong, independent woman to ignore the gossip and do what she wants for herself regardless of public opinion. I know I'm a slut. I revel in it. [comment]

2005-07-29-1040Z

I'm pretty sure I've been up for at least an hour, and it's still another hour and a quarter, or so, till the first restaurant opens. Hungry. Didn't bother to eat supper last night, unless you count a quart bottle of Tecate, so I'm paying for it now. Sure, I could have foraged some cactus, but I've been getting very lazy in that respect. Also, I don't have a knife nor gloves, and it is hard enough with them.

So anyway, here I am in the park in downtown Columbus, trying to keep my mind off food until some becomes available. As long as I have income, I'm not all that pissed off about the food being "locked up", but goddammit, why can't someone put a snack machine somewhere in town? I know why I don't: fucking government wants me to license it, i.e., they want a portion of my revenue, even before I get the first goddamn cent. Fuck 'em. If I do get some vending machines, I'll put 'em in my underground space and only my friends will know about it. [comment]

2005-07-28-0411Z

Sitting outside my tent, running down my laptop battery listening to my song collection with Windows Media Player. Uneventful afternoon catching up on email and chatting online with two women that I love. Then I went over to the Tumbleweed, late, and still was able to get a spaghetti dinner and listen to Willie, Mary, and July improvise some blues. Drank too much coffee, however, and had that particular type of bowel movement I call an "oil change". Not sure if it was caused by the coffee or by some of that Mexican food of dubious origin I ate on the way.

Oh, come to think of it, I did have an interesting incident walking home in the dark. 2 or 3 kids in a pickup truck drove past me and one yelled "Faggot!". I yelled back, "Eat shit, motherfuckerrrrrr!" So they turned around and came back... one yelled, less loudly, "Bitch!" and another mumbled something else. Then they pulled into the side street where City of the Sun's entrance also is. They stopped there, 20 or 30 feet away, turned towards the main road where I was, and waited. Apparently they were going to try and scare me by gunning the engine towards me when I crossed the side street.

But of course, I didn't cross the side street, I turned straight up it, towards them, my face with my best Clint Eastwood scowl and taking long strides even though the diarrhea was beginning to hit me again, making me a little weak in the stomach right when I needed to be very strong. But it didn't matter. I must have scared the living shit out of them -- they weren't expecting a challenge. They jammed the pickup in reverse, turned down another side street opposite the COS entrance and got the hell out of there as fast as they could. Ha! Probably thought I was carrying. Lucky for me. It sometimes helps that my hatred of being a coward is usually stronger than my fear of death.

Time to get some sleep, I guess, since Dissolved Girl is playing, the same one Neo was sleeping to in one of my all-time favorite movies. [comment]

2005-07-27-1712Z

OK, here's how to use netsh to set your interface back to DHCP:

C:\WINNT\system32>netsh interface ip set address local dhcp

C:\WINNT\system32>ipconfig

Windows 2000 IP Configuration

Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection:

Connection-specific DNS Suffix . : IP Address. . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.0.19 Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 255.255.255.0 Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.0.1

[comment]

2005-07-27-1632Z

Black guy in an SUV gave me a lift into Columbus, saving me another half hour of walking. It's been constant trains and buses since about 0500 Tuesday morning; Monday night I'd gotten an email from a friend in need, and though I'm often not much of a friend indeed, I think she saved me from a few wasted days in D.F., because I was going to hang around till the weekend for no particular reason. I'd already met, twice, the friend I'd gone to visit, and based on the 2nd conversation it seems pointless to hang around. I'll maybe come back when I have something more to offer.

This time I was wiser, and took the metro (2 pesos) to the bus station, and took the Omnibus de México all the way to Ciudad Juarez for MX$1256, then a Chihuahuenses bus to Crucero Palomas for MX$73, and one of those old schoolbuses into Palomas for another 25 pesos. Ate a couple of burritos there, bought some dental floss, crossed the border, and walked a mile and a half or so before I got the lift.

Sex isn't an even exchange, so it seems. It's not just penis for vagina. There's a lot more complexity of life matters that needs to be addressed before the act can be performed. Well, I'm beginning to see that. And when I see that, I want to run, run like hell, to a place where that doesn't exist. Where did John Galt hide his goddamned valley for christsakes? But then, I'm no peer of John Galt, am I? We shall see.

Anyway, if I'm going to take care of my sexual needs through promiscuity, as I've already more or less decided, I'd better stick with women my own age, who've been around the block a few times. Otherwise I can repress myself through working, as I did for years and don't really want to do again, or continue being a puñetero. Young, beautiful, successful women are apparently going to treat me more as a curiosity than as a viable sexual partner. Which is fine. In 5 years or so, they and I may grow closer together, as long as we remain in communication. Or not. I've got to live for today, goddammit. Nobody can promise me any tomorrows. [comment]

2005-07-25-2336Z

Found my Geox breathable shoes today, and threw away those that I had found at the bus stop in North County San Diego some months ago... they served me well, but I'm tired of hot, sweaty, stinking feet. Let's see if this NASA technology actually works the way it's supposed to. You can find them, for MX$575, at the Flexi store on Calle de Tacuba right next to Allende station. Anyway, now I'm pimped out head-to-toe. Bring on the babes!

Blew away another 10 bucks or more at the internet café again today. But that's OK, I got some work done, and my customer's web site is about ready to launch. I don't expect to get rich from this, but it's the best shot I've had so far in my life.

Also, met a nice German lady on aff. She's not looking for a fling though, she wants a stable partner. Ah, well. That ain't me, babe. [comment]

2005-07-25-1646Z

Still no cheap beds at Hostal Moneda. Guess I'll stay on at Cactus for the rest of the visit.

I have an online acquaintance, rapidly becoming an online friend, whose blog reveals a mind and a heart very deep, beautiful, and flowing with powerful emotional currents. I'm thinking about giving up chasing blindly after sex, which isn't working anyway, and instead building relationships with people like this, people I can respect and can communicate with openly and honestly.

And yet, there's that nagging sex drive always getting in the way of my hifalutin ideals. It's this condition that drives people into the sex contract called marriage, which then begins to destroy them. If love is going to last, it will last with or without the contract. If it doesn't last, of if it turns into a nonsexual love, that contract becomes a ball and chain to both parties. Maybe we were meant to experience this misery. Well, I've been there, done that, got the scars. Bring on the new age. Let's all get naked, physically and verbally, and quit playing these mindgames. While it may be true that sexual frustration has been the stimulus for a lot of beautiful art, sexual release allows me to focus on my creative work, such as programming and permaculture experiments.

Meanwhile, until I find or found such a paradise, I'm going to strut my stuff in my Matrix suit. I'll be the cock of the walk. No more begging for female companionship: I'll be myself, and the right women will find me, talk to me, fall in love with me, and gladly share their bodies with mine. Yeah, right. Dream on, brother. Well, it's a nice fantasy anyway. I got a hard-on just thinking about it. [comment]

2005-07-25-0321Z

Again, didn't waste much money today but no luck either. Spent all afternoon at that internet place downtown in the Mexico chatroom of aff consistently striking out with my lame attempts to hook up with the local chicks. About 7 bucks and 5 hours wasted. That website really isn't all that great. Without paying for premium membership, you can't initiate contact by email with anybody. Basically everything you attempt to do redirects you to the page to upgrade your membership. Fucked up. So the only place I can see to initiate contact is in the chatrooms, and those are pretty vicious -- girls making fun of the guys because of their age or their pictures, and the guys calling the girls whores. Basically a battle of the sexes. Then there are those women who just say how horny they are and inviting everyone to their house. I don't want to waste a trip to find out I have to pay US$100 or more for the pleasure of their company. And there are others who say they just want to chat. Some of them have video chatrooms that you have to pay for. Couldn't find anybody just willing to go out on a date with a 49-year-old gringo.

Then I went to Hostal Moneda near the Zócalo station to try to reserve a room for Tuesday. There's apparently only one person running the place at night, and he took an hour or so break, leaving 10 people or so waiting for him to come back to the front desk. When he finally showed up, he took those with reservations first, so my being 2nd in line didn't count for shit. Then these 2 British girls who had made, and prepaid, reservations, and had copies of emails and a receipt to prove it, were refused a room. He flat-out denied that they had made reservations because it wasn't in his computer. He was even sarcastic, as if they were trying to hoodwink him or something. I was very unimpressed with the way they treat customers. Another guy who had reserved online but did not get a confirmation email was also told he hadn't reserved. Word to the wise: don't prepay rooms online at Moneda, and don't count on your reservation getting into their computer system. So anyway, then he told me I'd have to come back tomorrow to reserve for Tuesday. Don't know if I should or not. Doesn't look too promising. Yet, they have free internet, which Cactus doesn't have. Plus a lot more chicks, because the place is much bigger. Guess I'll make up my mind tomorrow. At least I know how to get there now. And there's some good streetfood vendors outside the subway station at the far north end of the plaza, one block from the hostel, where I tried one each of their 3 taco varieties at MX$7 pesos each. Had to eat them standing up, but no tip was expected, so for 2 bucks I got a very filling meal. [comment]

2005-07-24-1911Z

Hard to find any restaurants open on Sunday. I finally found one next to Etiopia station, called California, with high-priced and low-quality food. Got the ham and cheese omelet with coffee and OJ for MX$71. The cheese was that nasty pasteurized processed chemical-ridden stuff. I could have gotten a better breakfast uptown for MX$22 and bought better OJ from a street vendor for 6 to 10 pesos. Oh, well. Water over the waterfall, as B used to say. He wouldn't say "dam" because it sounds like a curse word. Yet if he got mad, he could curse with the best of us... it's always taken more seriously from someone who reserves his cursing for rare outbursts. Fucking guys who say "motherfucker" every other goddamn word have a fucking hard time making emphasis when they want to. As someone asked me once, "What do these guys do when they're really mad then? Just use the same words, but louder?" Anyway (wow, what a digression), getting back to the restaurant... they have a buffet where you can supposedly eat and drink all you want, including Corona beer. That I might want to check out some evening. [comment]

2005-07-24-1815Z

Struck out again last night, but at least I didn't waste any money... there was a party at the hostel, and I was grooving with a hottie who likes Frank Herbert's Dune books and Tolkien too. And she knows Linux. Apparently I didn't rate, though. Well, maybe another time.

I pissed off another female there earlier yesterday or the night before; I had told her, casually as I could, that if she wanted to cuddle or have sex that I was more than willing. She said "Thanks but no", and now she avoids me like a dead skunk. Maybe I need to fine-tune the wording of my offer. Or possibly I should just put a sign on my bunk "Horny Gringo stress-relief service, free for females, satisfaction guaranteed". There hasn't been one ugly woman there yet, so I'm not too worried about having to turn anybody down.

Yes, I'm aware I'm spending far too much time and money attempting to obtain sexual partners. But once I get a base of, say, 3 willing females in each town I frequent, I can move on to other pursuits and just slowly grow the base. Despite my lack of success so far, I know there have to be women out there who want sex every day and don't want a committed relationship. [comment]

2005-07-23-2045Z

The taco prices are very low on Diagonal de San Antonio walking easterly from the Etiopia station: 3 pesos each for tacos al pastor, also called adobada, the marinated pork that's cooked on a vertical spit just like what the Gyro places use in the states. Then up the street at Los Amistosos, they have full-sized tacos de bistek (carne asada, thinly-sliced beef steak) for only MX$6 pesos each. Plus they give you a basket of bread and a pitcher of agua de papaya, the latter of which I took a small taste but otherwise didn't partake -- chances are they used unfiltered tapwater to make it.

I'm looking for a place that teaches dance lessons. If I want to meet young women, or practically any Mexican women outside of the strip bars, I'm going to have to learn to bailar. A knowledgeable guy at the hostel told me if I'm going to learn just one dance, make it Salsa -- he said that's the most popular all over Latin America. [comment]

2005-07-23-1648Z

Last night, ugh, what a waste. Went to that club on Morena near the hostel but it was already closing, only a little after midnight. So I walked to Cuauhtemoc and turned North; after a while I ran across a stripjoint I'd never noticed before and don't care if I ever do again...

They offered table dances for MX$150 which were actually more of a lapdance; you are allowed to touch and kiss the girls, which I did... at one point I had my mouth full of tit and my hand full of pussy. But I never made it once. Every time I'd get close to orgasm, she'd pull away, sabotaging my attempt. Never got my rocks off, after sinking over US$60 into that rathole. Then the doorman wanted a goddamn tip for sucking me in there. Fuck that. No way, man.

So I continued uptown, back to Las Cardenales 2 where I had been last Sunday. I didn't recognize the tall chick who had danced so close to me the previous time, but one called America told me she was the same one. Hmm. But it wasn't her that got me off last night (rather, this morning)... it was the small one, Alison, that brought me to orgasm both of her dances (naturally, with a little help from my hand). She was hot. But I sank another $30 or thereabouts there, so altogether US$90 down the drain. $45 per orgasm. Not good. I've got to find a woman who will do the deed with me just for her own pleasure. Alternatively, I'd better learn how to fantasize better and just get a goddamned magazine. [comment]

2005-07-22-1736Z

Bought a cellphone yesterday. MX$460 plus MX$100 for 2 months worth of calls, no bills, no bullshit. No idea how to get more minutes when these run out, but I've seen these "Amigo" stores everywhere so it shouldn't be too difficult. It's supposed to work in Baja too but that remains to be seen.

Ate a very acid breakfast this morning at Churreria El Moro on Lazaro Cardenas #42. I decided to walk uptown today instead of taking the Metro, and this was the first open place I hit that looked inviting -- but the breakfasts looked overpriced (MX$36 or so) so I just got the coffee and churros, a pastry made of a corn dough squeezed out into stellated cylinders with a machine, then fried, probably in some nasty oil like Canola. To top off the toxins they drown them in sugar. They do taste good, though, I have to admit. You'd think a place like that would be full of gordos but actually there were plenty of slim people there, including some very lovely females of the species.

Hate to say it, but I spent MX$200 this morning on a black turtleneck sweater. I'd been looking for one in the thrift shops for ages with no luck, so there you go. That's all I needed to complete my gothic outfit. Black felt hat, black turtleneck, black leather trenchcoat, black exercise pants which reach all the way to my shoes which were tinted black by an excellent shoeshine man who goes bar to bar in El Centro. The only thing I'm really unhappy with now is the shoes. They don't breathe -- at all. They stink like hell, and after one day a pair of clean socks has a horrible raunch. That didn't happen with my Crocs -- maybe it's time to break down and buy another pair.

I've been thinking about the vanity that drives me (infrequently, but surely) to make myself look good. It's natural. It's genetic. Consider the peacock, for example. To attract a mate, one needs to stand out from the crowd. Well, I'm ready. Bring on the babes. [comment]

2005-07-21-1838Z

OK, the beard is gone. I hope that improves my chances with the muchachas. You hear me, Z? The baby-butt-face kid is back.

I'm in a place in Centro, at Bolivar 58, called el huequito. They have excellent, though small, tacos de pastor for 7 pesos each. 4 to 6 of them make a pretty good lunch, plus they have Modelo brand beers. I've decided, since my diarrhea this morning after a liter of Indio last night, to forego all beers by Moctezuma Cuauhtemoc, even though Bohemia never, to my knowledge, bothered me. I suspect these Indios have genetically engineered something that produces GI problems only in Gringos and added it to their beers. I can't blame them, but I won't subject myself to that punishment either. I'm sticking to Modelo's brands and Tecate.

I noticed Las Cardinales 2 again last night. It's only half a block north of Antrax on the opposite side of the street, but unless the neon lights are on (which they weren't Monday night) it's almost impossible to see. I was there an hour before the first show, so I skipped it and went "home" to the Cactus. A little almond oil and fantasizing about R was enough to take care of my problem for one night. Looks like I'll be alone in the 8-bed dorm for another few nights, affording me enough privacy for my autoeroticism. There's a cute little French girl, there at the hostel, staying, I assume, in one of the 4-bed rooms, but she doesn't seem to take much interest in me. I get the idea she's hooked up with one of the other guys, but that's just a guess.

I'm signing on to various websites, one of them AdultFriendFinder.com, hoping to find other people interested in polyamorous relationships. I think there would be lots more except for the pernicious, pervasive influence of various religions, but I can't do anything about that. Public nudity is hard enough to find, public sex all but nonexistent. My tribe, living underground out of sight of the authoritarians, will permit, if not encourage, both. We humans are both cursed and blessed with being in "constant kemmer", as Le Guin calls it in her book, and we might as well enjoy it in the short lifespan allotted to us. [comment]

2005-07-21-0025Z

Finally found it, after about 6 or 7 bookstores and a few street vendors. Ojos de perro azul por Gabriel García Marquéz. It's a collection of short stories, and I skimmed the first one, La Tercera Resignación and the "title track". The first reminded me somewhat of Poe. Something about an emaciated 18-year-old dying for "the second time". I need a better Spanish-English dictionary in order to comprehend it better. My vocabulary is still too limited. The story Ojos de Perro Azul is a sensual, intimate snapshot of a man and a woman. Again, I need to improve my vocabulary before I can tell you exactly what's going on. As it is, I rejoice at the few sentences of idiomatic Spanish that I can translate perfectly without resorting to the dictionary.

Either I misunderstood the waiter, or he was mistaken. El Salvador, the street he told me the bookstores were on, was about 7 blocks north of the restaurant, not one; and I only found one bookstore there, and they didn't have it. However, the lady there told me there were more bookstores on Cinco de Mayo, another few blocks north. Turns out it was just one block north of Madero, where I met up with the young beauty yesterday. I'm beginning to learn my way around Centro. It could take years to become familiar with all of this city. [comment]

2005-07-20-1929Z

I got lost again wandering around Centro looking for a bookstore. According to my mesero, Fernando Jimenez, I'm only a block away from the bookstores de la cultura Mexicana, so after (if!) I finish eating this Molcajete Mixto, a huge bowl carved of volcanic rock and filled with all kinds of meat, plus nopales and cebollas, I'll go looking for the book my new friend wants me to read. I can't remember exactly the name of the book or the author, but it's something like Ojos del Perro Azul (blue eyes of the dog) by a guy named Marquez. Anyway, if you stray into Colonia Obrera as I did, look for Los Molcajetes at 160 Isabel la Catolica. Don't order for just one person unless you have a huge appetite. There's enough food for 3 or 4 people for MX$90; it's about the same amount of food as 20 of the 7 peso tacos, so for a group it can be a big money saver. And the service is friendly and fast. [comment]

2005-07-20-1713Z

Got lost walking out of Hidalgo station this morning, went the wrong way on Reforma and ended up in La Zona Rosa. No sweat, eventually I ran into Cuauhtemoc station and realized my mistake.

Traffic here in D.F. is the craziest I've ever experienced. Never assume you're safe to cross, even when you have the green "walk" light... something can come at you from either side, even on a one-way street: a car, a bus, a modified bicycle carrying a few hundred pounds of cargo... the drivers don't give a shit, so you have to watch your ass. At least the lights have a "grace period" like in the U.S., and unlike Ecuador where when one direction gets "red" the other gets "green" instantly.

The street vendors aren't just crowding the sidewalk on weekends, it's every goddamn day. They give you so little room to walk, that when I accidentally knocked a bunch of stuff off someone's cart with my laptop bag today I didn't feel guilty at all and just continued on. Fuck 'em. You practically have to walk in the roadway because there's so little sidewalk left, and the buses and trolleys are just itching to run you down. On the other hand, some of them have some good stuff. I saw a nice thick all-wool sweater yesterday for MX$100, which I would have bought had it been the right style and color. Music and video bootlegging is big business here. They buy a blank for MX$2.50, burn some songs, and sell it for MX$10.00. Just one sale, and they can get a taco on the street for 6 or 7 pesos. [comment]

2005-07-20-1231Z

Slept like a log last night at Hostal Cactus. All this time I've avoided spending money at hotels/hostels thinking I was saving, and it the U.S. it was certainly true most of the time, but here just the opposite. Yesterday I spent the least money in a day since I got here. Sanborn's café gives free refills for as long as you want, for MX$12 pesos. And we must have been there for close to 3 hours, because by the time I got back to Hidalgo station for the ride to the hostel it was already close to 10PM.

Man, do I love falling in love. Don't know if I'd want to do it every day just because of the intensity, but it wouldn't happen anyway because girls like this are few and far between. What's not to love about someone young, tall, slim, classy, outrageously beautiful, educated, traveled, understanding, accepting, ...? Anyway, if the age difference or any other reason prevents this from going beyond coffeehouse chats, so be it, I'm very glad I made the trip. OK, enough about the lady, I don't want to jinx my chances.

The dorm was empty last night. I don't know if people just stayed out partying, or they all left, or they just think I'm a freak and slept somewhere else, but this place is dead.

I think I'm going to lose the beard for now. There's a razor in my snakebite kit, don't know if it's up to the job or not, but what the hell. If I'm serious about meeting young women I'm going to have to give a little. Shaving once every few months isn't going to kill me. Didn't want to do it before the meeting, though; a beard is as good a shallow-woman filter as anything you're likely to find. [comment]

2005-07-19-2026Z

What a waste last night was. The strippers were very genial, and I enjoyed talking with them and buying them beers at $50 pesos a pop, especially the 18-year-old, but at the end of the night I was out about US$50 and hadn't seen more than a nipple flash. Hell, you can get that watching football on American TV. But the little one gave me some good advice. She said there were hotels for MX$100... I figured for 10 bucks and some privacy I could jack off by myself and save myself the all-night partying costs. Besides, it's probably going to rain all week here, so sleeping in the park will be iffy.

So I websearched and found Hostal Cactus, and that's where I went, near Etiopia Station on the green line. I'm in the 8-bed dorm with both guys and girls sleeping in the same room. Nice. But the showers unfortunately are segregated, so probably it won't be the sex fiesta my evil mind envisioned at first. It's $110 pesos a night, close enough to my target price. Maybe a nice place to meet sexually liberated, intelligent, world-traveled females.

Anyway, I washed myself and my clothes, gotta give myself half a chance with the female I came to meet. Showtime in about 2 hours. Wish me luck, OK? [comment]

2005-07-19-0239Z

Couldn't find Las Cardenales tonight. Maybe it never existed, and I made it up. Or it's just open on weekends. Or I just walked past it without noticing it. Anyway, I ended up at a little place further up Lazaro Cardenas called Tin Tan. Beers are only $2.50 at the moment, maybe it'll go up after the strippers start at 10PM, a few minutes from now. [comment]

2005-07-18-2218Z

Oh, getting off the topics of sex and other bodily functions for a while... if you want to set a static IP on your Windows box and you're logged in as a non-Administrator user, use administer.bat and type:

C:\WINNT\system32>netsh interface ip set address local static 10.0.0.45 255.0.0.0 10.0.0.138 1

C:\WINNT\system32>netsh interface ip set dns local static 200.33.146.194

Of course, use the correct values for your system IP, netmask, router, and DNS, unless you're at KeepInTouch in el Centro del D.F., in which case those values might work! Now, I don't know yet how to set it back to DHCP for when I get back to Kinko's-land... [comment]

2005-07-18-2144Z

Solved most of my problems. Early this afternoon I found people sleeping in the park, so maybe I was wrong about the cops or they just decided to ease up. I lay down and got some rest, and after some time woke up to the sound of rain. A heavy, cold rain hit the city and most people were scrambling for cover, except for a few who had the foresight to bring an umbrella or raingear on this previously hot, sunny day. I hope all those who were leering and jeering at me earlier today got caught cold. Bwahahahahahahaha. Yes, I sweat a lot in this leather trenchcoat when it's hot, but I take like a duck to water, and can easily endure what cold there is at night.

So anyway, I took my coat off for a couple of minutes, washed the top of my body and my sweater in the rain, and applied my baking soda/borax solution. Nobody's watching in the rain, so as I walked along the park I also clipped my fingernails and flossed my teeth. Meeting my friend tomorrow afternoon at a famous café. I'm feeling good, no matter what happens or doesn't happen. And no, I won't be telling you either way... nobody's going to get intimate with me knowing I'll broadcast the play-by-play all over the web. Well, I shouldn't say "nobody", but in any case unless someone wants me to do so, it would be wise to keep my cards close to my chest. It's enough I expose myself naked to the world (in words so far... if anybody wants pictures that can be arranged) without dragging all my acquaintances along with me. I've probably let too much slip already in some cases.

Still, after 3 months, have to spit up phlegm many times during the day, though my coughing has all but stopped. Whatever it was really did a number on me. I'm beginning to wonder if I'll ever be completely cured, or if my immune system has gone to shit. I'd better look into doing a kidney cleanse and a liver cleanse when I get back to New Mexico. Time to start overhauling my body for the next 50 years in case I outlive my dad's truncated lifespan. But remember when I lost the feeling in my fingertips? It finally came back completely over the course of a year or so. Some insults take longer to heal, I guess. [comment]

2005-07-18-1620Z

Obviously, I got my laptop configured correctly, finally. It had to be a fixed IP, not a guessed one, and the router was on 10.0.0.138 not .1 as I had guessed. So I had it all fubared. And the DNS wasn't being proxied by the router either, so that was another glitch.

In my tribe, I want everybody to have enough sexual partners that nobody has to go a night without an orgasm, or at least a warm body to cuddle. Life without orgasms sucks, and some women (men too, I imagine, but less commonly) need a lot more intercourse before reaching orgasm than one partner can readily provide. I'm a little worried about the potential birth rate, though. I'll mostly use condoms but I can't count on everybody doing so. Haven't decided yet whether to raise the kids communally, as in Walden II and Conversations With God, or the old-fashioned way. I'm leaning towards communal, with a non-school as in My Ishmael and a goal of having a kid more or less self-sufficient by age 7 or so, and having older children as mentors for any areas still lacking. It should be a self-sustaining system once started, but of course that remains to be seen. [comment]

2005-07-18-1537Z

Last log got cut short when nature called... at an internet cafe now with my laptop plugged in but no DHCP server so still no working connection. I ran windump and saw it's using the 10/8 network so gave myself an IP but don't have a DNS server to use so I'm still SOL. Speaking of which, I think it was the "Sol" cerveza I had last night that caused the urgent bowel movement. Another one to stay away from, made or at least owned by the same company, Moctezuma Whats-his-name brewery. Hmm, Moctezuma's revenge? I'm waiting for the place's resident geek to give me a DNS IP.

Meanwhile, the park at the Bellas Artes metro stop has cops on horses harrassing people, so doesn't look good for a sleeping place. Gonna have to get what little sleep I can sitting down on benches here and there, or maybe in Starbuck's if I can get away with it. No idea where I can wash my clothes, either; haven't seen a lavamatica downtown and even if I did, this place seems so uptight I don't know if I could peel off a layer of clothing without getting arrested. Maybe I'll have to meet my online friend with all my travelstink intact though slightly obscured by the leather topcoat. [comment]

2005-07-18-1255Z

Nope, I was wrong, it was still the Central district. I hadn't yet reached Lazaro Cardenas, and there were a number of bars on that same street, some of which I went to later on this night of barhopping that has now ended with me in Starbucks recharging my laptop.

In keeping with my sexual liberation, I went to titty bars for the first time in my life as far as I remember... I might have gone into them while fundraising for the Moonies, but if so I probably averted my eyes from all the action so it didn't count. Last night I was as crass as I could get, ogling every square inch of skin I could see. They have the same trick here with the beer for the girls costing about twice as much, but luckily I was prepared for that since Palomas and didn't fall for it... that meant $US7.00 at Las Cardenales across from Garibaldi Plaza, and even more at the first one I went to, I think it was Antrax but not sure. I ended up leaving the first place after two beers, and being charged $120 pesos after being promised $50 pesos per beer including the tip, so I was a little less than pleased with those mentirosos and told them such. The bouncer at Las Cardenales told me $39 per, and he kept his word, so I gave him a US$2 tip when I left.

The girls there were nice, but they wanted $MX1000 pesos for a handjob/blowjob plus (I think) the price of a hotel room. I just wanted a handjob there under the table. The third stripper, whose name I don't remember, a tall chick made even taller with her Elton John-style elevator heels, gave me enough close-up views of tits and pussy that I was able to jerk myself off quite nicely, more or less discreetly with my hand hidden under my coat, so I gave her a $US5 tip. None of the others got jack out of me (heh).

In between bars I went to a restaurant north of Garibaldi that had $MX22 peso breakfast specials: for example, a pork chop, 1 egg, salad, beans, and coffee. What a deal! And a clean restroom for no extra charge, too, which is often difficult to find even in the U.S., doubly so here.

Sunday in central Mexico City reminded me a lot of Guayaquil, Ecuador: street vendors everywhere and the smell of urine, excrement, and rotten fruit all over. It's a wild place. And there was a huge plaza a few blocks north of Pino Suarez that had an outdoor concert and was packed with literally thousands, maybe tens of thousands, of people. It was a sea of humanity bobbing and swelling between the old buildings on all sides. [comment]

2005-07-18-0008Z

Made it to Mexico City without anyone asking for my visa. Amazing. I'm presently camped out in a bar called La Mascota somewhere just west of the Central district. Battery almost dead, stay tuned... [comment]

2005-07-16-2246Z

Good thing I stopped in Chihuahua. Rested my poor back a little before the 18-hour leg to D.F. Changing to Omnibus de Mexico from the Chihuahuense line even though they're both the same price, $1002 pesos. Hoping the seats will be more comfortable. Checked my email here, also there's a bank ATM.

I was right about the Carta Blanca, it seems. Yesterday afternoon I had a quart of Tecate, and last night a sixpack of MGD. No GI problems whatsoever today, a good thing because most of the time I've been on buses. [comment]

2005-07-16-1853Z

Walked to Palomas at daybreak, changed some money for pesos, ate breakfast at San Something-or-other, then waited for the bus just up the street at San Something-else pharmacy. A little schoolbus took me and a few other viejos to the Palomas Trunk station for $2.60, from where I caught a bus to Cd. Juarez for $70 pesos. Had to stand up the whole way, but saved over $10, since the Columbus to El Paso bus is $20. Now I'm partway towards Chihuahua City on a $251 peso ticket on the third leg of the trip. Lots of pretty girls on this bus, and as horny as I am, I'm afraid I'm giving them a little too much attention... [comment]

2005-07-15-1445Z

Gotta watch my expenses, went way overboard last night. After getting a ride back to COS after some drinks at The Pink House with a friend, I rode the bike back to Palomas and went into Lucky 7, the bar next to the one I'd been going to previously. Much better: younger barchicks, Maná on the jukebox, the pooltable only 25 cents a game and it wasn't in use at the time. They also sell Tecate, but only in the can, so after one of those I went back to Carta Blanca, though I'd noticed for the first time the previous day a rusty flavor in my first bottle; the same as I tasted in bottles of Dos Equis in Baja. I'm thinking it's the Carta Blanca that's causing my daily diarrhea lately; I don't remember it occurring until I started going to the Palomas bars. Anyway, getting back to the point: I bought a beer for one of the younger chicks who were hanging around the bar, and was surprised to be charged $3 for a half-sized bottle of Sol. Then the bartender asked me to buy her a beer too, and the same thing. WTF? She tried to explain it to me but I didn't understand. Anyway, that ate into her tip, I only left $1.50 when I left. And I probably won't go back, despite liking it much better than El Central next door, and their beer being only $1.25 instead of $1.50, and their shots of Presidente brandy for a dollar something.

I'm finding general acceptance here of my radical new (to me) views on love, friendship, and sexuality. This will probably be an excellent area in which to build my tribe. [comment]

2005-07-14-1820Z

Walked to the bar in Palomas the last two nights, Tuesday with Alex and last night by myself. An old, ugly, fat whore sat down next to me last night and started feeling me up, putting my hat on her head and asking for beers and cigarettes. I bought her a few beers, nice guy that I am, but when she wanted money as I was leaving I said "nada mas". I had already told her I preferred younger women, and at that she had gotten pouty and handed me back my hat. What does she think, I'm that desperate? Getting there, but not yet, babe, not yet. Still looks good for a Saturday departure to D.F. Stay tuned... [comment]

2005-07-13-2015Z

Oftentimes people sabotage the legitimacy of a program they're trying to promote by misrepresenting statistics and other "facts". For example, the Ciudad Juarez femicide. The linked page would have you believe the rate of murders of females is alarmingly high, when in fact, compared to similarly-sized U.S. cities, it's probably only "about average", if the FBI's estimate of 22% of murder victims being female is applicable to both U.S. and Mexico. For example, Dallas, Texas and Ciudad Juarez both had 1.2 million or so citizens at the turn of the century, and with about 200 murders each year, roughly 40 of those ought to have been females. But the SaveJuarez site claims far less than that. So where's the story? Maybe here. When you get past the raw statistics and see some of the gruesome details that make these killings unique, you begin to see why so many activists are stoked about making changes in Juarez City. I think what happens is that, when there's a groundswell of support for anything, opportunists come along who try to make a profit from it. And in so doing, they can taint the program and make its supporters look like fools.

I rarely lend my name to programs, regardless of their apparent urgency or obvious need, not only because I agree with Daniel Quinn's "if the world is saved, it will be saved not by old minds with new programs, but by new minds with no programs at all", but because things like the Juarez problem, no matter how worked up people get and no matter how many dollars are poured into it, just aren't going to go away as long as this world of nation-states, governments, and laws continues as it has been. It's time to try something that works, and tribalism seems to be a working model. It served us well for millions of years. I'm forming my tribe now, a tribe of intellectual, earth-friendly, free-loving libertarians. Tribes are small and non-hierarchical, and the members take care of one another. No courts, police, laws, corruption. Murder? Maybe, but with no more than a few hundred people in the tribe, the murderer isn't going to remain anonymous long. [comment]

2005-07-13-1914Z

Finally, finally, figured out how to use java.lang.Object.wait() and java.lang.Object.notify(). This crap is so nonintuitive to me. "Owner of the object's monitor" indeed. Almost guaranteed I won't remember what I learned today, I'll have to learn it all over again the next time I need it. In case anyone else is having the same problem, here's the way I grok it:

Each thread can own the object's monitor for a short time by synchronizing on that object. For example synchronized(stack) {doSomething();}. One thread's doSomething() will call notify() or notifyAll(), while the other's will call wait() or wait(millis). I used it to show a splash screen within a midlet for either 3 seconds or until a key is pressed or the stylus presses against the screen. Of course, I could have schlocked something together by pointerPressed() setting a variable, and chopping up my sleep() into 50ms or so, checking variables each loop, but I wanted to do this one correctly, interrupt- or event-driven all the way. I'm tired of writing shitty code just to get a product out the door. [comment]

2005-07-12-2315Z

Finished The Left Hand of Darkness. Anticlimactic ending, but not unsatisfactory, and overall I'm very impressed. Got to find some more books by Le Guin, she's good.

Got some work done today, for a change, but nothing that can be called programming. My mind still isn't quite in gear yet.

I'm chewing on yet another variation on my wind travel idea... a small sailboat, of sorts, with two bicycle wheels in front and a smaller wheel in back for steering; hopefully amphibious, but optimized for land travel. If I build it, it won't be until I get back from Mexico City, though. [comment]

2005-07-12-2024Z

Got horribly drunk last night, had diarrhea this morning. Beer, margarita, beer, another margarita, and several shots of tequila. But I'll survive, and will probably indulge, hopefully less, tonight as well.

Foreshadowings of Ishmael on page 233 of The Left Hand of Darkness, during a philosophical conversation between Genly Ai and Therem Harth:

"The Yomeshta would say that man's singularity is his divinity."

"Lords of the Earth, yes. Other cults on other worlds have come to the same conclusion. They tend to be the cults of dynamic, aggressive, ecology-breaking cultures. Orgoreyn is in the pattern, in its way; at least they seem bent on pushing things around..."

Like Daniel Quinn, Le Guin's character agrees that it's not human nature to be, as Agent Smith says, "a virus". It's just one cult among thousands, a cult that began roughly ten thousand years ago in Mesopotamia and China and quite quickly destroyed, conquered, or subsumed most other cults as it spread over the globe. [comment]

2005-07-11-1937Z

Got discouraged during the night when I woke up surrounded by 20 or 30 huge cattle, who were eating everything they could find and trampling the rest underfoot. How the fuck is anything going to grow here? So I didn't wait for G that morning, just started out to COS as soon as I could get my ass off the ground and got my stuff planted and watered. It's probably dying already because it hasn't rained a bit. Anyway, my feet and back started complaining after the first couple of miles; by the time I reached the General Store and added another gallon to my 5-gallon bucket I was already hurting pretty bad. I'd forgotten than in this climate I sweat all over and develop a rash on my butt, which hurts like hell after walking a while. Plus my feet itch and blister being trapped inside shoes with no ventilation.

While still on the dirt part of Sunshine Road, the black cop from Columbus stopped and chatted with me (I don't know his name, but due to the demographics out here, "the black cop" is sufficient to uniquely identify someone). It turns out that the place where my land is located is considered open grazing area; the farmers don't have to fence in their cattle, instead I as landowner have to fence them out if I don't want them there. Wonderful. And nothing grows there because the land was being farmed year after year, depleting the soil until it wasn't worth shit. That's when they started selling it for housing.

By the 8th mile I could only walk a few hundred feet at a time, at most, between rests. Not that there's any place to sit down except on the edge of the breakdown lane, which isn't very safe. So at this point, mile marker 24, I lay down in some straw which had been spilled all along that stretch of Highway 11, at the bottom of the ditch that runs along the road. After maybe an hour, some Mexican-American ladies stopped and asked me if I needed help; I said I could use a ride into Columbus. They said to hop in the back, which I gladly did. They stopped a couple of times along the way and changed drivers, and when I got out at the gas station in Columbus it was all guys in the cab. I thanked them profusely but didn't offer any money because I had only a little cash left and wouldn't be able to get more until Monday morning. I felt a little bad about that, but not enough to lose any sleep over...

The library was open late that day, as they're showing movies in the computer room on Saturday afternoon and evening. Halle Berry is hot as Catwoman. Watching her strut was the only worthwhile thing about the movie, however. So I saw some of my old buddies and spent some time catching up on local gossip. And this afternoon I'm going to start catching up on my work, which I've been neglecting during the travel time. Looks like I'm heading to D.F. on Saturday. Rereading what I just typed, it looks so disjointed and scattered, which matches my thought patterns at the moment. Dunno if it's the heat, the change in diet, or the continued lack of sex, but something is messing up my brain. [comment]

2005-07-09-1113Z

The first 10 miles or so were almost effortless, with my handtruck near-perfectly balanced. I set out much earlier than I'd planned, and after a brief but intense rain, the sun came out and I might have made it to my lot with evening twilight still in the sky... except. Damn my adventurousness. I just had to see if Hermanas Grade south of Coyote Road went through to Hermanas Road near Sunshine. It was somewhat overgrown, but there was evidence of recent vehicular traffic, and I figured there had to be a right-of-way where the telephone/power poles ran through. I figured wrong. After at least a half-mile in, the fucking rancheros had run a fence, blocking the rest of the way. By the time I got back to Coyote, I had at least one flat tire from the thorns, and daylight was fading fast. As more and more air went out of the tires (it turns out both had gotten thorns in them), the hand truck was harder and harder to pull. I slowed from about 3 MPH to .2 MPH. With 2.5 miles left to go, I'd be most of the night getting to my lot. And a couple of old guys in an SUV had already stopped to see what I was doing.

An hour or so later, one of the old guys came back: this time in a Homeland Security pickup truck. But he was friendly enough, since I wasn't no goddamn furriner: he gave me a ride the rest of the way, and offered to come back in the morning to refill my 5-gallon water bottle, since a gallon or so had leaked out due to the way I had the handtruck loaded into the back of the pickup. Nice guy, name is Gary or Gerry (hard 'G'). He lives at a quaint movie set up the road which I've passed many times, wondering what the heck goes on there.

I spent the night alternately sleeping, freezing, and working. It never got really cold at all, but while sleeping, of course, the body's vital processes all slow down and hypothermia occurs much easier. It's morning twilight as I type. Soon I'll try to get my Carpobrotus cuttings planted with at least one berm started, and be on my way to City of the Sun. Hoping the general store is open on Sunshine at Hwy. 11 so I can get water in a small bottle for the trip; I lost the water bottle I had before, probably on the bus. More later... [comment]

2005-07-08-2110Z

Yesterday afternoon I went to Tom's Tavern in downtown Phoenix for a couple of pints and a burger, and when it came time to pay, it turns out some dude named Brent had paid my tab before he left. Cool. Left Jerry, the bartender, a $5 tip and still had money to burn for the day... caught the bus back to Greyhound, but kept going past it to see where it led. Got out at terminal 3 of the airport, and found the Chili's upstairs. Had a 20 oz. Guinness for $8, and that was the end of my draft beer allowance for that day. Switched to a bottle of Heineken and a special $2 shot of Jack. At first ordered the chips and salsa, but they were terrible. Chips too salty and I felt I could taste the bitterness from aflatoxins. Never noticed that in the totopas in Mexico. So then I got a bowl of the chili, which was good. Found out today they overcharged my card by about $7 though.

Then I found out I'd lost my bus pass. Didn't want to buy another, so tried to find my way out of the airport on foot. Bad idea. After wandering for an hour or two, the cops came and gave me the usual harrassment, but finally after I came up clean on their warrant check one of them gave me a ride to the Greyhound.

I was first in line for last night's bus, except for some smartmouthed viejo who thought his cane entitled him to butt in front of everybody else. It was looking the same as the night before; each bus was almost full, and only let a few passengers on. The first was an express, and didn't stop in Deming, but I got onto the next bus. Sat next to a pastor from Honduras (IIRC) named Ralfiel. Nice guy, gave me an apple and didn't preach to me. Slept in the park on Spruce Street, went to the new library and checked my email, and bought some stuff I need for cultivating my lot from Wal-Mart. Typing this in at the Wendy's, and will probably begin the 14-mile walk after dark. [comment]

2005-07-07-2125Z

Alcohol functions, to me at least, as a disinhibitor. A temporary lobotomy. Unlike some, I don't get violent, nor any more depressed than usual (and usually happier); I get loquacious. Both with my tongue and my keyboard; I had to really edit a lot of that last entry when I got up the following morning, and may still live to regret what I left. Oh, well.

What point am I trying to prove, for example, by all my talk about being friendly with lesbians and gays? Am I saying "I'm cool, I treat perverts the same as normal people"? I hope not. I'd rather the reason be that at one time, under the influence of religion, I did hate and discriminate against gays (never had a problem with lesbians -- my reading of the scriptures never revealed anything criticizing them -- even that evil God of the bible wouldn't, it seems, deprive Solomon's many wives and concubines some comfort in their lives). And after abandoning God, and finding genetics, I can see that there is good reason to believe that sexual orientation has genetic components. So who am I to criticize what nature might have ordained? What still irks me is that some gays, particularly in Mexico, are overly aggressive in their flirting, even after I've made my preference clear. But J wasn't like that at all, so even if my hunch is correct, he's still good peoples as far as I'm concerned.

I'm in Phoenix for a 24-hour layover. It was only supposed to be an hour or so, but they overbooked, and by 5-something local time, 3 hours after my bus was supposed to have left, I confirmed with the ticket counter that I could catch the next night's bus, and left the station. It was already daybreak by the time I walked from the Greyhound station to Central and Broadway where I bought a day pass for $1.80. Along the way I passed a Palo Verde tree, cut by a fence, and oozing sap like taffy, some hard and some chewy, sweet-smelling. I didn't try tasting it though, no idea if it's comestible or not. Those bitter oranges that I mentioned last time I passed through are out of season, only hardened brown golf-ball-sized fruits on the branches. I went to the library for the internet and restrooms, then to the park behind for some sleep. Now I'm in one of the downtown Kinko's using their free laptop workstation. Ah, the life of the rich and famous.

[comment]

2005-07-06-1032Z

Tonight I played billiards with a Mexican dude, J. I suspect he's at least halfway gay, but that's cool with me. He told me he'd pay for the game if I won 3 out of 5. I won the first 2, then he said he'd pay for the beer for the winner of the next game. I won the next one, even according to his rules, that you need to sink the 8-ball into the same pocket in which you sunk the last of your balls, a rule which I'd never known before. So he wanted to play still more, and I won 4 out of 5, at which he decided to call it quits. But he tried to get me to pay for part of the expense, which of course I denied. He had given his word to pay for the games, and I told him as much: "Un hombre vale solo su palabra. Si el palabra vale nada, el hombre vale nada." He understood, and he quit pretending, and paid for the games. And he even thanked me for telling him that.

I got quite a sendoff. The owner of the bar, who by rights should hate me because (I'm quite sure) he knows I'm crazy about his wife (as are most other hetero males in Rosarito -- she is an absolute babe), said thanks to me before I left, and some of the other regular clients, whom I regarded highly but didn't have any idea it was reciprocal, came and shook my hand and/or hugged me. The girls crafted a missive in english: "As of today we're going to miss you a lot. We hope you come back soon. The ladies in Barandas. Sincerely, Carina". I hugged and kissed a couple of the girls -- what a joy it is to have these young beauties pressing against my body. Overcome with alcohol and emotion, I asked one of them to spend the night with me; when she declined, for which I don't blame her, I didn't bother asking any of the others. I think I spoiled the moment as it was, at least for her.

Another thing which really made my night: there was this Canadian dude in there, tossing his head as he spoke, and making all these generalities about Mexican women and men. After a particularly scathing generality, I told him I thought he was a racist and a fool, and I didn't want to talk with him any more. At that point he vigourously denied it, and lit into me with venomous invective like you wouldn't believe, accusing me of all kinds of social irresponsibility of which I'm not remotely guilty. He then spent an hour or more talking with some Mexican dude, presumably to show me what a wonderful citizen of the earth he really is. When he finally left, I asked Mari, the girl behind the bar, if she thought he is a racist or not. "El es racista", she said without hesitation. I felt so wonderfully vindicated.

The Molotov song Frijolero has stirred up, over recent years, a lot of hateful discourse from neocons like Allan Wall, but to me it's just a confirmation of what I've already experienced: that there is plenty of racism on both sides of the border. The coup de grace comes from the one Gringo member of the band, who raps: "I wish I had a dime... for every single time... I've been stared down for bein' on the wrong side of town...". He knows: he's the fucking gringo puñetero. He's seen the racismo from both sides of the fence, and it's making him sick, as it's making me. Nation-states have reached the end of whatever useful life they might have had, as I was trying to explain to the Canuck tonight, if he'd been willing to listen. It's over, dudes. Love each other, or kill one another for food, it's all cool to me, just don't try to justify your foolishness with any kind of racial, political or religious bullshit, because I'm not buying. [comment]

2005-07-06-0116Z

By tomorrow evening I'll be partway towards Deming on the big gray dog. Finished The Apprentice a couple days ago, but Macy's was closed yesterday for the 4th so couldn't pick up any new reading material... rectified that today and picked up Hesse's Siddhartha, which I just finished reading about an hour ago, and Ursula K. Le Guin's The Left Hand of Darkness, which looks like an interesting read.

Gerritsen's book was of course excellent as usual, and I'm kicking myself for not having read Siddhartha earlier in life. I guess we all have to make those same mistakes anyway, though, if Siddhartha's understanding is correct. Hesse's background, from the short biography at the end of the paperback, is a lot like Daniel Quinn's from Providence, anybody notice that before?

Must control myself at the bar tonight and not drink too many Tecates. Diarrhea on the bus is particularly unpleasant. [comment]

2005-07-03-2156Z

Forgot to mention, sometime in the past few days the shit creek running past Smart and Final dried up. Gone without a trace. I have no idea how they pulled it off, unless that tubing they were recently installing on the west side of the road was actually a continuation of a much longer line that already existed east, going towards the mountains, and the sewage now sneaks underground into the ocean, or even (gasp!) receives some processing beforehand. Or, it could be that somewhere upstream, the flow was diverted to run into the stream that crosses Benito Juarez between the Rosarito Beach Hotel and Rene's restaurant. In whatever case, it's going to be nicer to walk that stretch of road without the smell of the sewage combined with that nasty perfumed detergent that the Mexicans seem to think is so goddamned wonderful. I just had to leave the cafeteria at the hotel because they started swabbing the floor with that disgusting chemical.

I'm going to start working on a book, tentatively titled Starving the Machine, subtitled Preparing For and Kickstarting the Postconsumer Economy, here in this blog. Here and there will appear paragraphs as they bubble up to my consciousness, and later I'll organize them into chapters. So here goes...

Showers and baths: in a large part of the so-called civilized world, people frown upon those who smell of sweat, not to mention urine or excrement. Women in general avoid such men, and men crack jokes about smelly women. Taking daily showers and wearing after-shave or some other perfume is practically a requirement for getting laid. I have lived long enough in the desert to see this as the bourgeois fantasy that it is, a huge waste of water and source of a constant flow of soap into the lakes, rivers and oceans of the world. When you see soap suds washing up on the shore, you are witnessing the result of all those clean bodies of people and cars that fill the streets of your city.

In the first place, soap is unnecessary. You can get clean enough with borax, which contains no surfactants nor perfumes. Perfume is unnecessary, and makes many people sick (not to mention the poor fish). The strongest deodorant I've ever used is pure baking soda. It lasts up to two days, and then you can simply rinse under your arms and your genital area, and reapply (actually, I don't use the baking soda on my balls -- if anyone gets close enough to them, too bad). In fact, I think these are the only two consumables, besides dental floss and food, that I ever buy. I mix them 50/50 and keep them in a cloth or plastic bag. Though one does not contribute to the cleaning power, and the other doesn't contribute to the deodorant effect, it's easier just keeping one bag. I've mentioned before how a container of white powder freaks out law enforcement officials, and don't need to double their suspicion.

About the dental floss: this is the only thing you need to keep your teeth and gums healthy. No toothbrush nor toothpaste is necessary. Mouthwash? Forget it. Use your fingertips and scrape the top of your tongue, then spit. Between that and the removal of rotting food particles with the floss will eliminate about 90% of your halitosis; drinking a cup of coffee or, better, mint tea will mask whatever's left. Slosh the liquid around and force it between your teeth. Of course, it's better to floss at night also, so the acids generated during the breakdown of the food don't have as much chance to wear down the teeth, but sometimes I forget, and in any case a single flossing never seems to get everything.

Use the borax/baking soda solution to wash your clothes. Add clorox if absolutely necessary. In the city you can use a laundromat; in the desert a bucket will suffice: let them soak in the solution for a while, then wring them out and hang up to dry. It probably won't hurt to leave the solution in the clothes as they dry, but I usually use another bucketful of water to rinse them; at the same time I'm aware that this is an unnecessary waste. It's like when driving, everyone going faster than I is a reckless maniac, everyone driving slower is a brain-damaged fool causing collisions. We are all part of the problem, only at different levels, and we need to keep working at minimizing the damage we do to the earth. Worrying less about how people smell is a step in the right direction.

This is part of what I teach, for $1000 per day, in my Red Pill course. My blog audience will receive it for free. Most people will scoff and insist that I pay them to read my drivel; that's OK. It's here for those who are ready for it. [comment]

2005-07-01-1904Z

OK, so we pissed away the first half of the year. Let's have another round to start off the downhill half.

Daniel Thomas, author of the famous tijuanagringo website, is every bit as fascinating in person as he is in print. He has an excellent command of both English and Spanish, which powers his poetic knack for distilling his observations into neatly handcrafted wordworks. I, on the other hand, shamelessly mix metaphors with a plum.

Found another Tess Gerritsen book at Macy's: The Apprentice. Maybe it'll last me till I get to Deming if I can focus more on my programming than on reading and drinking and playing billares with the muchachas. [comment]

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