Taking the Subway

I took the subway to work this morning for the first time since moving to San Francisco a year and a half ago. A budget crisis prompted the experiment, which I plan to do for 2 weeks. I figure I can save about $500-$550/month by dumping my car, and that kind of chump change is exactly what I need right now. My options were to move into a less expensive apartment and/or downgrade/get rid of my car. So far, I’m feeling pretty comfortable with public transportation from where I currently live. It feels great to get some fresh air in the morning and a morning walk!

Inflated Sense of Entitlement

I was born in 1980. Check out this quote, I think it describes me well:

“Rightly or wrongly, the millennial generation — those born after 1980 who are now entering the workforce — has gained a reputation for being difficult to manage. They want to be coddled on the job, resist direction and generally have an inflated sense of entitlement, the critics say.”


Well, at least I’m not the only one! Yesterday, I dropped my supervisor off at the airport. I was waiting for the car ahead of us to pull out, as they had just dropped someone off. The police next to us motioned me to pull up closer, but that didn’t make sense to me, so I waited, much to my supervisor’s chagrin. I learned that I definitely do resist direction (i.e. “direct orders”), and have no inclination whatsoever toward the military “Yes, sir, no sir” mentality. My supervisor definitely had the “just do what they say” attitude, but I found that extremely difficult.

Unrelated….I’ve been told that my feelings of “entitlement” (which I’ve had since youth) may stem from the fact that I have always been taller than my peers. Could be…

I’m About to Marry a Cat, and other insights

I’ve had 2 great insights today…I’ll start with the hypothesis that is most easy to prove:
#1: I’m dating a cat.

For starters, he meows at the front door to be let in. Okay, not actually meows, but he calls my cell phone when he is ready to come in, and it has the same effect. When he does come in, he makes a beeline for the nearest sofa or bed, and asks for a massage. He purrs. He treats my furniture and belongings like they are all his. If you have a cat, you will understand this phenomenon: For example, my genetic cat will hop onto my roommate’s bed and will actually get mad and hiss when my roommate tries to move the cat or sit on her own bed. Once a cat sits on something, it is hers. My boyfriend does the same thing…he walks into MY room, sits on MY bed, and claims one side of the bed for himself. Once he has touched the remote control, don’t even THINK about it! HELLO, it’s MY remote control!

Then when he is done getting petted and having all the attention he wants, he leaves. He might make small talk with others on his way out the door, but only if he feels like it. He doesn’t get along with other cats, in fact he hates other cats. He actually hisses at my cat sometimes. He claims to be allergic, but I think its just territorial! He doesn’t particularly like dogs, especially ones that jump on you, but he tolerates them.

He is obsessed with being clean…he showers and grooms himself more than anyone I know, and always smells good. He is extremely independent unless he needs something. Need I say more. Well, I say don’t get a cat unless you can take care of a cat, and what can I say, I love cats!

35 – The Magic Number

#2: 35 Years is a Magic Number: They don’t let you run for president of the U.S.A. unless you are age 35 or older. I’m sure there’s some historical significance to this, but I’m going to posture that it does actually take that long to have enough experience under your belt to be able to see the bigger picture and how everything relates.

Sometimes I feel like I should just shut up until I’m 35, and quite often I do, especially when I’m around those much older, or younger, than me. I’m 27 now, almost 28, but I feel like I still have so much to learn sometimes. If you are really introspective and honest with yourself, you will see just how many things you are wrong about in a typical day. On top of that, I feel like I am full of hypotheses, but short on solid theories. I think that is where experience comes in. So I keep relatively quiet, at least in person!

To relate this “magic” number 35 to other things, I think about how long it takes a human to really get something right. For example, take prescription drugs. I would be wary about taking any prescription drug that hasn’t been in the market for 30 years. Just look at all the drugs that recalled within 10 years of being invented & sold, with tragic consequences for the people that took a chance on them. I’m okay with Penicillin, for example, and I almost trust aspirin and ibuprofen, and I’m becoming okay with birth control medications (remember it took at least 10 years to get the dosage to a safe level when it first came out, though they still haven’t resolved the ecological effects of excess hormones being peed into our water treatment plants, NOR has anyone really given serious thought to how they will affect future generations born to mothers with sustained higher levels of female horomones than natural).

But extend the hypothesis to other of man’s inventions. I bet it took a good 35 years to come out with a decent automobile, for example, or an airplane that resembles what we have today. My guess is it will be at least 35 years before the great invention of Internet becomes stable and well-rounded, for example on things like privacy issues and copyright infringement issues. I’d love it if someone with more time on their hands than me would look into this magic number 35 and tell me what is the basis for our needing 35 years (or longer) to get things right.

Americans declared their independence in 1776. Five years later, we had a constitution. Within 15 years, we had a Bill of Rights. Of course it wasn’t until 1865 that we abolished slavery, so that took much more than the magic 35 years to figure out…It took about 27 years total to get through the 12th Amendment ot the Constitution, (the next string of Amendments took place later, around the Civil war, involving citizenship rights). So not quite 35 years, but still in the ballpark…

Banana Slug

I was thrilled to see my first 3 Banana Slugs this weekend while on a hike to Buzzard Ridge, near Santa Cruz. They look just like the one in this picture, and they are very cold and slimy.

So disgusting yet captivating! I can see why A Perfect Circle used them for an album cover…

Actual sighting/photo by me below (on the trail)!
Rayvn & Me - Hike 00017

Legally Blind

And there are stars in the sky tonight
but i can't see them,
So instead i go within
The inner galaxy unknown
Know Thyself
I know a man almost as crazy as the astrophysicists
But he dives within, where the mysteries
And workings
Are just as deep and mysterious
The mysteries of our chemistry, our neurology, and our psyche
I can't go out there
Not with my naked blind eyes
But i can go within, and practice honesty
And bring back the treasures of the universe
One song, within and throughout

Theory of Mind

Watching the Science channel tonight, a show called “What makes us human?” shed some light on my previous post about what pets teach us about relationships. I said that I tend to infer my own reactions & judgements onto other people; that is, I expect them to react the way I would react to things. Apparently, this is an easily observed human evolutionary trait that causes us to socialize better. We have to infer something about what others are thinking to anticipate how to interact with them. It would be interesting to learn how it is we do this…by watching their body language, for example, and comparing it subconsciously to our database of past experiences.

Theory of Mind: The idea that one person can calculate the thoughts and ideas of another.

They gave a great example of Shakespearean relationships, how the stories are built around characaters understanding or MISunderstanding others.

When you throw this theory in with the statistic I heard in yoga training, that approximately 80% of our thoughts are misconceptions, you see just how (un)evolved we are!

If you observe your thoughts, and actually learn to admit when you’ve made a wrong assumption (for example, you honk at the car ahead of you to move, assuming they are not paying attention, and later learn they were actually waiting for a pedestrian to pass, or, when a person close to you says something, and you interpret it incorrectly, which causes you unnecessary sadness), you will understand how true that statistic is.

Great Light

In athletic competition, one thing you learn is there is always someone better than you. Even if you are the best in the world at what you do, there is probably someone out there right now who would be better than you, but they didn't have the inclination, or the opportunity.

Therefore, when observing those greater than you, it's best to have the attitude of a moth drawn to a light. As I heard Deepak Chopra say tonight, when there is light, you see your shadow. Only when there is darkness do you see no shadow. Great athletes are like bright lights, and around them, you see your shadow, or the realities of your shortcomings, distinctly.

But rather than be stuck staring at your own shadow, allow your competition to be your inspiration–your illumination. Study the light, follow the light, become a light, and darkness and shadows will always be behind you.

Clinton Pointing Finger In Wrong Place

I was thinking tonight about the ridiculous finger-wagging Senator Clinton has been doing at Barack Obama, and I can only think of one good reason for the gusto that she puts beind her matronly “you’ve been a bad, bad boy” routine. Pent up aggression, perhaps?

Ha, ha, sorry, couldn’t help it.