2021 NBA Finals word

July 22nd, 2021 by harold

Same with 2021 life brother, same.

Tech Progress

July 19th, 2021 by harold

I don’t know why those Boston Dynamics robots invaded the innanet last week, but yeah. It’s amazing.

The most absurd progress to me is energy: ten years ago, those robots had giant power cables attached to them. The fact that we achieved autonomy on what looks like heavy machines, while making them do 180 jumps and dance, is insane. My brain was like the Leonardo meme, pointing at the screen and screaming “CGI!!” from time to time. It’s real though.

The absolute creepiest accuracy to me is AI voices. I guess you’ve heard of Bourdain’s documentary using his voice without him being alive. I believe it’s worse than anything. It’s the T2 nightmare that we couldn’t possibly think would be doable like that and yet, here we are. Voices are ingrained in our souls like no picture ever will. A familiar, loved voice is the truest trust. It’s the most unfalsifiable thing ever. It was.

The voice of someone you adore is one of the most sacred thing ever. Knowing that technology can be abused —and will be— to sell us some stuff by puppeteering our emotions on a whole other level, I’m not feeling it at all. Leave us alone.

“but what about the people who could use this to mourn, having lost someone early or in an accident?” Sure, but we’re entering some ethical seas that we will have to manage on top of others. Mourning would never stop, you would listen to your dead folks and have conversation with them? It’s probably really not healthy at all.

FLOWers

July 18th, 2021 by harold

I love those fluffy ones.

The Stone ones. Can’t stop looking at them.

Bucks 5

July 18th, 2021 by harold

You’re a little obligated to root for the Western team when you live in the West. The Phoenix Suns have had a great playoff run, impressively winning games as you should, sharing the ball, shooting lights out. The problem they could have with the Bucks in the finals was their length, and Jrue Holiday.

The Suns just got a good taste of both and lost a crucial game 5.

Jrue is amazing, we’ve known that for years. When he turns it on and starts knowing you, it’s fucking over. He’s an outstanding defender and his steals were key last night. Versatile as hell, which means that sometimes he underperforms because it’s hard to do everything well but the added value of a Swiss army knife is never to be forgotten.

Giannis Antetokoumpo. My Euro bro. Mister I Play On Baby Hoop In The NBA. Rubber band ass MF, I’m sick seeing you destroy everyone, but I enjoy it too. Your poise is fantastic, your mental is strong and no one can physically do anything against you. After such an emotional rollercoaster —bad injury a few games ago— this looks like you’re on the verge of writing a beautiful chapter in your life.

Devin Booker! It’s not over. You believed, stayed in Phoenix and now you’re in the finals, albeit close to elimination. But you’re a beast, bro. Your team, when finding the open man, is like a bunch of water that you’re trying to catch with your fingers. Find your open man and let’s go to game 7!

GREEN ROOFS 4EVER

July 17th, 2021 by harold

Look, I know that I sound insane with my green roof obsession. Understand that I have fixed roofs not my whole life, but almost. They’re complicated, costly, not efficient and with climate change and its stormy weather, weak.

ENTERS THE GREEN ROOF

Check this one out:

Try to tell me that you wouldn’t love to climb a bunch of stairs and relax on your roof after watering the roof plants. It doesn’t matter where: city, countryside. it will be beautiful, useful, sustainable, I can’t wait at-all.

Now look at this one:

Climbing in the evening to have some tea and edibles looking at the sky I mean you must be nuts to say hell no to that, I’m sorry.

So it looks like it’s trending. I dislike the black walls in all architecture these days —33% more heat absorption with black paint, no thank you—but those two are solid representations of what I envision us having as “modern” or more accurately, “up to date with current events and trends, respectful” housing. Small, comfortable, sustainable. Yessir.

Steam Deck

July 16th, 2021 by harold

Interesting move from Valve.

I see a big issue in terms of market.

Two categories here: broke people, and not broke people. There is pretty much nothing else.

Broke people already have their portable game device and probably will not buy a new one at that price.

Not broke people probably own most of all the current portable game device options. They can afford to try a $400 portable console that allows them to play the games they’ve been already playing on big monitors or powerful laptops but the truth is, it’s not necessary for them. They might become Steam Deck ambassadors.

Steam Deck is a luxury gaming accessory. In this economy, in this uncertainty, in this panny? Bold move.

Then there’s of course the issues with software compatibility, fixing a machine that has built-in controllers and storage upgrades.

Good luck.

*rings bell*

July 16th, 2021 by harold

To my brothers in their late 20s early 30s who are like “look some grey hair in my hair/beard, so dope!”

Bro you are dying rapider, that’s not cute.

Stay solid tho.

Manny

July 16th, 2021 by harold

This is a gif of Chris Roberts, a legendary skateboarder doing a switch flip to switch manny on a high curb in west LA. This is of course a damn hard combo to pull off (you should subscribe to his podcast, it’s basically Dope Skateboard History with all the detail and stuff).

Because not having insurance is my thing, I’m mostly doing the part where you roll on two wheels and not on a high curb but on sidewalks, okay? That said, the manny I’ve been practicing is about 4 times longer without a smooth surface, okay Chris? It’s a block down the street. An intersection, two houses before hitting the back alley.


Myself, Le Manny  for No Name Skateboards, December 2020 (video)

I clear it everyday now. Usually in four or five tries but sometimes straight out of the house. Landing just like that gif, with a little knee bend. Man, it feels SO GOOD.

It’s so much about confidence. You have to control your speed, your balance, your breath. You have to stay focused. You have to execute well. And that’s achieved with confidence. But sometimes you fail because you’re over confident: almost at the end, you get giddy, lose your balance, it’s over. Tenacity is important: so many times, after failing four or five times (I only ride for 30mn before going back to this machine) I want to give up. But then, a last one where I know Imma do it, where I forget everything else in life for the 10 seconds of perfection needed to land that stupid trick and… I land it. That battle against yourself. You can do it. And then you do. You challenge gravity and laws of physics, just on the edge of what’s possible.

That feeling is the purest, self-produced crack. Defying odds with consistency is a hard drug.

I love how one second it truly seems impossible or really hard to do –my body is aching or there’s a lot of wind– and ten minutes later it feels like the problem doesn’t even exist because I just solved it. One second, you fail miserably. Next second, you master completely. There’s just something magical. I love it.

The soundtrack to motivate myself? I cleared that sidewalk with Paramore, Mobb Deep, my own music, Chloe & Halle, obscure 80s boogie funk, deep house, Urban Dance Squad, Justice, H.E.R. and more.

Everything works when riding a board confidently.

Book quotes

July 16th, 2021 by harold

Goethe felt that the purpose of living was to enrich life and that human beings are endowed with a special appreciation of life —a heightened consciousness—so that we might steward all that is alive.

I mean, he’s not wrong. We’re scared and spend a lot of time NOT enriching our lives by buying something that is supposed to make us “happy” right here right now, whatever that means in the 2020s.

The Romantics therefore reveled in a human nature that was deeply embedded in nature, and rather than repudiating nature, as the Protestant ascetics and Enlightenment philosophers chose to do, they embraced it with zeal. While the Protestant theologians thought of nature as fallen and the Enlightenment philosophers viewed it in utilitarian terms as useful resources, the Romantics viewed it as good and the basis of all creativity.

I might be a romantic like, a lot.

For the Romantics, individuality was of a different kind. They believed that each person is a unique being endowed with creative potential and that the truly liberated life is the one that optimizes opportunities to be self-fulfilled.

I mean, what’s not to like here? I read this, think about Felipe Nunes and nod heavily. Felipe skates better than I do, by far, and has no legs. Nurtured Individuals are extremely powerful and enjoying life at its fullest. Instead of creating a world that leans toward nepotism with other rigid schools of thought, the Romantics balance it all out by making each individual a special and not special person at the same time. Because that’s what we are, a paradox. I dig.

Even Karl Marx, who was anything but naïve, was seduced by the misguided Romantic fervor that equated the good old days of Paleolithic, Neolithic, and even feudal life with a certain sensibility that needed to be recaptured. His referencing of an idealized past, like others at the time, reflected a growing sense of alienation felt by millions of Europeans caught up in the throes of a fast-industrializing society that was reducing all of life to self-serving material ends.

The idea here is that Romantics were thinking too much of nature being everything. The thing is, nature is always what we need at some point. Always. We need nature to get away from cities. We need nature NOT to burn down because we’re living in the middle of it? It is our freaking ecosystem and we need to preserve it because it sustained us very well. We’re lucky it happened. We should care about it, which means consuming less stuff. That doesn’t mean going back to living like we’re in 1115 Europe, obviously.

The Romantics, like the Enlightenment rationalists, believed in progress, but for them it had nothing to do with accumulation of wealth but, rather, the accumulation of natural wisdom.

Yes and what’s today’s natural wisdom telling us? Share this gigantic amount of wealth created by all of us adequately, without creating casts, layers or pyramids within society. Nurture a simple and healthy communal life. Communities with different vibes sharing common resources. Why the fuck is this hard?

Commercial exchange in the Trobriand Islands was always preceded by social exchange, again confirming the ancient wisdom that cultural capital precedes commercial capital and that commerce is an extension of cultural relations and, therefore, not a primary institution in the affairs of humankind.

Super key fact. Which connects with another one: culture first, then commerce, then politics. Basically Culture, Economics and Politics are inseparable (Harold Cruse wrote about that). You can’t change one without modifying the others. That fact has so many ramifications I can’t even.

The relationship between empathic and commercial bonds is complicated and fragile. That’s because, as previously mentioned, empathic extension is always a non-conditional gift, freely given, without consideration of reciprocity on behalf of the other, either in the moment or in the future. While commercial exchange would be impossible without empathic extension first establishing bonds of social trust, its utilitarian, instrumental, and exploitative nature can and often does deplete the social capital that makes its very operations possible.

Which is why we need UBI so badly. There’s been enough slavery, free work done to this day around the world and for centuries for us to be honest and fair and stop making most of us suffer for no reason. The empathic extension has to rise dramatically right now.

A flood of new sociological, psychological, and  cognitive studies have begun to challenge the basic proposition equating increased wealth with greater happiness. What we are beginning to discover is something relatively apparent but largely overlooked in the public dialogue. Studies show that if people are very poor and unable to muster up the bare essentials for their physical survival, they are unhappy. The interesting twist is that the same studies show that once people have reached a minimum level of economic well-being that allows them to adequately survive and prosper, additional accumulations of wealth do not increase their happiness but, rather, make them less happy, more prone to depression, anxiety, and other mental and physical illnesses, and less content with their lot.

Yup. It’s extremely clear in my life: most people I know well above the survive and prosper line, are depressed. The ones on the line or being in and out of survive and prosper are the most likeable and “human”. They show compassion while working hard, know how to calmly indulge and be thankful simultaneously. Wasn’t Chrissy Teigen, a model and TV personality complaining about being depressed while on vacation in Italy in a pandemic? We have proof left and right that accumulation of wealth as a pure focus in life leads you to not enjoy why you exist. Subtleness is not punchy, sadly. People miss the point of money.

The American dream puts a premium on individual autonomy and opportunity and emphasizes material self-interest as a means to secure both personal freedom and happiness. While the European dream doesn’t discount personal initiative and economic opportunity, it tends to put equal weight on advancing the quality of life of the entire society. The dream is an acknowledgement that one doesn’t thrive alone in autonomous isolation but, rather, in deep relationship to others in a shared social space.

This is a big cliché to me. Europeans are as materialistic as Americans or rather, joined the club in the past 20 years. People got bored and started to buy SUVs to go to the supermarket. Also advancing the quality of life of the entire society doesn’t mean much for Muslim women in Europe. Nor does it for all of its cannabis users. The wealthiest escape taxes just fine. Europe is bad at serving its citizens and America is as well. Different reasons, different cultures but same lack of empathy so same results. States all over the world could do a much better job to be honest. There’s room for improvement.

The problem is that when so many young people feel they are special and more important than other people, they become less tolerant of others and less willing to brook criticism; they also are less able to manage failures that are inevitable part of life and less able to express empathy to others.

And then you give them devices that supercharge this whole vibe and you end up with young adults on TikTok spitting out their age-bound lack of understanding and comprehension of the world really loud, and being rewarded for it. I don’t know, man.

Anyway, The Empathic Civilization by Jeremy Rifkin. Pretty good, pick it up at your local store or library.

Twitter convos lol

July 14th, 2021 by harold

> Although we built Fleets to address some of the anxieties that hold people back from Tweeting, Fleets are mostly used by people who are already Tweeting to amplify their own Tweets

this is exactly my problem with Twitter. It’s an even bigger echo chamber than FB. As much as I try, I can’t seem to escape the oversaturated bubble of a handful of extremely loud mouthed tweeters and their ardent followers. Mix in the toxic conversations, and it’s definitely not a place I feel comfortable discussing anything.

Twitter the Service was designed to allow you to spit a few words out there, that’s it. It was never, ever meant to be a conversation tool.

And yet Twitter the Company has been force-feeding the idea that tweets are conversational. They are not: actual conversations go nowhere or straight to DM/email. Because good conversations are mostly private, digital world or not. Replies and quote tweets are like comments on blogs, they’re not a conversation, they’re a comment. And that’s fine! But that’s not a conversation, which means it’s optional, which means Twitter the Company can’t make money off of that.

Twitter’s value is in its real-time commentary core, and the only way to monetize this is with a subscription model but that virtually kills the ad model too. I wouldn’t mind that at all but subscriptions are probably way less lucrative. Oh well.