Multivariate Escapism

I just got back from a 24-hours-of-driving-for-60-hours-of-chilling trip to Portland. Things were crazy when I left Portland, and California was going to be a nice relaxing alternative. It has, instead, also been crazy. So to escape this I, of course, went back to Portland–to cure my California crazy (to swallow the fly). And OMFG DUSTY GUESS WHAT??!!11 It was still crazy in Portland. Maybe it was crazier. But I got to see some good people that I won’t see for a while and I got to make sure that the school knew that I was gone for a while and I got to get some of my motorcycle shit from my friend’s garage in Portland. Here are some more picture elements to illustrate this story and others.

If you’re ever 50 and going to craft stores too often, you might want to get checked out.

A fly on a post in my front yard.

It ain’t hip hop if no one’s getting a vanity license plate.

My brother’s cat, doing its best impression of him.

My mom hit the Royal–4000 pennies mother fuckers.

I got to hang out with Genevieve before I went to Portland. Super sweet.

View from her porch in Oakland.


My friend Gabby lived in a place called Millerama. I don’t know if this photo captures how amazing Millerama is. Wild turkeys walk through this little clearing every day.

When I got to Portland I went to buy fish with the xgf, Serene. Not pictured is the Albino Rainbow Shark they bought. Picture in your mind what an albino rainbow would look like. That’s what this shark looked like.

Elliot, Layla and Gabby (respectively), moved into a really nice new place within a few hours of being in town. The walls are red.

When you read lovebryan all day, you don’t have to worry about avalanches of books falling when you want one near the bottom–because you don’t read books, you only read lovebryan. Layla, on the other hand, has no gag reflex, no time to read lovebryan and I guess has something worked out with friction to keep Ender in the cubby while she’s pulling Nabokov.

New Bicycle

Quantum Nostalgia

A while back a famous writer/poker player/mathematician posed a query about an intuitive reason for quantum randomness. I thought this was funny, coming from a poker player, due in large part to the fact that correctly playing poker involves a lot of playing odds–betting money on a random event due to the mathematically calculated probable outcome. The crux is this: though there is absolutely no way to know exactly which card is coming (barring cheating), we can easily calculate how likely the cards we want to come will come, and by the size of the pot judge whether, over a large enough sample set, it is profitable to call, raise or fold. Given enough of these theoretically correct plays, the good poker player makes money off of independently random events. I just assume that on the quantum level, there are a bazillion little card games going on at any instant, enough that on the large scale we can easily calculate the trajectory of falling objects. But on the small scale we’re left with an uneasiness and frustration much like that of going to Oaks, playing perfectly, and leaving broke.

But I don’t really want to talk about poker, that’s just what brought it up. I was thinking about nostalgia, based on some of the pictures below, and for whatever reason I started thinking about the uneasiness of randomness again. Sometimes people have a hard time getting lost in the moment, having a truly good time with the friends/significant others/family/job they have, opting instead to idolize their crystaline pasts, which contain, inevitably, a string of friends/significant others/family/jobs that at the time they did not whole-heartedly appreciate. It’s easy to write this off as neurotic behavior, ambition, or the fact that the friends they have now really aren’t as great as the friends they had in high school. All of this is true some of the time, but I think more often than not it might have to do with the uneasiness of randomness. The present is always pretty random. Apprehension reigns over the perception of our friends dedication, our upward mobility at work, the prospect of dating someone you may not even like. The odds are very likely in our favor. The chance that falling uncontrollably into the moment will yield a large payoff is high, but the chance of deceit or waste is high enough to keep us at a safe distance. Only in the past is anything certain, and if the human brain is good at one thing, it is good at trying to stay safe by avoiding uncertainty. If it is avoiding uncertainty, maybe it has a death-grip on certainty, and maybe the only certainty is that you had a good time throwing rocks at the beach.

Josh doesn’t get nostalgic when he thinks about his brother opting to avoid the wash and paddling instead into his new epoxy.

Sam often opts to take the high road.

The surf was flat, so we did other shit.

We made large piles or rocks–

And then we knocked them down.