December 20th, 2004


Why do you tease me?

Every so often, I get dead-tree spam in my mailbox at the Evil Banking Neighbor reminding me that credit lines, personal loans, home equity loans, and other such instruments of debt are available to me at below-market Team Member rates. These never fail to irritate me, even though I realize full well that they're just doing shotgun marketing on the employees in the hope of hitting someone who isn't leveraged to the eyebrows already.

In my case, not only am I leveraged to the eyebrows but I have the kind of credit rating usually associated with deadbeat Third World countries. Homeless alcoholics have better credit. So these offers for credit packages I couldn't possibly qualify for are more even more annoying than they otherwise would be. Yeah, I know, whimper whimper whine whine, suck it up and pay the damn bills. I'm doin' it. Still, I can't help wishing they'd fine-tune the damn lists and leave me out for once.
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The death of Socrates

I'm not done reading the Great Dialogues of Plato yet, nor have I finished wading through the Phaedrus, but I get the impression that the morals charge against Socrates was just window dressing. What the Athenians were really trying to do was get rid of an irritating smartass.

12/23 Update: Finished the Phaedrus, which doesn't bear much resemblance to its description in Zen And The Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance. The preceding statement stands, only more so.

Failure to communicate

That's basically what the underlying problem is with autism, whether the person is at the high-functioning end (Asperger's syndrome) or the low-functioning end. Ann Althouse, a law professor at UW Madison who I don't link to nearly enough, has an interesting little post with a good link to a NY Times article about some autistics and their parents who think that the world needs to be more accepting rather than that the people with autism need help. Well...maybe.

You see a lot of people with Asperger's in fandom and the IT field, which shouldn't surprise anyone who's spent much time in either subculture. Not all fans or IT people have Asperger's, of course. Personally, I think the parents who want the world to change rather than for their kids to get better at coping with their communication problem are missing an opportunity to help socialize their children, but part of the problem with Asperger's is that one tends to get excessively focused and driven, so...