Sunday, February 3, 2013

Over One Hundred Thousand Visits to this Blog

Thank you all for reading, especially for your comments, and feedback. I really do appreciate it and feel very blessed.

There's apparently been over a hundred thousand visits to this blog with something like 130,000 page views.

When I started this blog three years ago I was so excited when someone read my first post. Then I was really really joyful when friends began to join. I think I was moved at ten thousand views. I didn't quite understand it. I have this read out that said people from all over the world were reading my blog. I thought that was incredible. I would look at this map for a bit comparing what I wrote with whether more East Europeans were interested or not.

I added the advertising at some point. I have over many years done pro bono work and given my time freely wherever there was a need. As I've got older and with the economic times as they've been I've tried very hard to be more of a grown up. So the advertising was that sort of thing. As it turned out my blog was 'used' and 'violated' by countless advertisers but I never received a 'cent'. There were a whole slough of conditions. People had to actually buy something or click on an ad or something small printish, beastial and clever.It was interesting. I liked that some machine out there could figure that when I wrote something about pillows people who read it might want a mattress.

I mostly struggle these days to find ways to reduce the incredible tax burden I've been under all my life. The government patronage and free hand outs to their 'favourites' have over time got to me as I've no say in this 'favouritism' yet am indeed the benefactor of all these folk whether they are corporate leaders or streetside bums. All of them treat me with disdain as a kind of 'mark' and at times the 'vote' my taxes gives endorsing government has me wanting to not work. But I love work and mostly what the government does is satisfactory. So I think if I'm trying to make this blog a 'business' and my writing has over the years been a source of income and a 'business'. Perhaps, I think trying to think cleverly like business and government peopole,  I'll be able to 'write off' something. Years back an accountant told me about this 'write off' thing.  I've been very impressed at how rich people rarely pay taxes because so much of what they do or have is a 'write off'.  Similiarly I've been so impressed that government workers can 'hide' the true value of their incredible wealth in indexed pensions, health and dental care, travel allowances and all manner of freebies that added together make them millionaires.  I've thought about it a lot but mostly it's not reduced my tax burden anymore than any one else not writing.  I just do  so much pro bono work in all aspects of my life.   "Smart" people "take' and 'stupid' people give when it comes to business and money.  The fact is I'm 'envious' of these 'smooth operators' and 'cannabalistic' clever folk. I forget to ask what's in it for me at the bottom line of money and wealth and prestige.  I usually am satisfied that what I've done is 'good' and the 'right thing'.  Yet I learn such considerations rarely hamper the actions of so many I know.

I also thought about the 'freeware' idea and sharing ideas like we do as scientists so I thought my blog would contribute to 'truth' with my ideas honed from experience having some validity and being valuable for that. It seems that has been the case though I did find that very 'clever' colleagues were using my writing and quotes and such and including them in their cleverly orchestrated books for profit and self promotion. Several have over the years phoned or emailed me and asked for my permission to use material I've shared freely for which they'll profit but that's only told me how many are indeed doing this without acknowledgement. When I look for my material on the internet it's literally everywhere, sometimes in free journalism, with it's own advertising revenue or for profit enterprises.  I find that interesting.  I've had this happen hundreds of times to date and seen my 'ideas' and even my medical reports as the basis of others very expensive medical legal reports. The fact is I myself am using the 'ideas' of C.S. Lewis, Einstein, Montague, Thatcher and Clinton without consideration of source on a regular basis. Ideas are part of what Jung called the 'collective unconscious'.

The creative copy write is a difficult process given the common ground. I think there's merit in this because 'artists' . mystics, writers and all those other creative people are commonly 'used' by more business minded folk with the agenda of seeking money rather than beauty or truth.   The starving artist motif doesn't bother them one bit just so long as they get theirs.

I realize  that in the eyes of some of my colleagues in different fields, I'm like an amateur sexaholic taking business away from the street prostitutes who rely on their trade for their income.

I thought about the advertising a lot and procrastinated about doing anything about it. Here were these people putting billboards up all over my various lawns and promising to pay me, and wanting me to work for them.  Since then never paid on their first promise I became somewhat skeptical about who was profitting. Somewhere along the chain there were fat cats and I was probably a 'mouse' in their jargon. Now I think they owe me $20 or a $120 but I don't have their industry or machines to go after that at this moment. I've more important things to do like writing this.

The fact is I like writing. I've loved editors and publishers. I've done both but haven't particularly liked it. I 'm apparently good at it. When I've done this stuff for others it's been incredibly well received.  As an editor I apparently can kill half formed babies with the best of them leaving only the healthy bits for the reader.  I haven't had much of the same desire to do this to my writing runts.

What I like is writing. For decades before it was fashionable I kept journals that no one read.  I've thousands of pages in boxes and lost thousands of pages in divorces where the ex's destroyed my writing as so much junk.  I've an artist friend whose ex wife burnt dozens of  his canvas.  The courts put no value on creativity in this way or register the violence that one does to dreams.  Only some violence makes public record.

I like sharing ideas too. I like recording events. I like playing with words. I love all the creative 'stuff", stuff of writing and I like other writers. So blogging has been a marvellous 'journal' which I've shared with other. I've been concerned at times about the 'transparency' but then as I got older I found that there were a lot of 'lies' being told about me. Indeed one of my enemies (or friends for all I know) said I was dead and had a city I'd lived in with a whole lot of friends believing it.  I found a blog was a way of maintaining at least the appearance of life and challenging the individual who would kill me as an idea, if anything.

The greatest risk of the media today is that it will quote out of context, cherry pick or show selectively biased bits to work their 'story' whatever their story will be.  I like that there's this deeper more extensive record of my life that shows it's rather unlikely I've been devoted my time to the end of the world.  Like most people I have a rather ordinary life with it's own peculiarities.  Working as a psychiatrist I've seen that most people have mostly ordinary lives but it's the spin that they or others put on their lives that make them individually extraordinary. So many people do lead 'lives of quiet desperation' and often people are stumbling about in 'survivor mode' from one chaos or other.  When people share they find that they're not so alone and often that many others share the same views. By sharing my thoughts I've shared that yes I may be crazy or no I'm not crazy or whatever. When I was younger I was much more concerned about my 'thoughts'.  Masturbation was an especially concerning thought.  And thoughts of wanting to run through the halls of the school.  I was thankful when I heard that line in a song.  Oh I thought I'm not alone. Like the book "little prince' so much of what we do is to get beyond the alienation.  Often all we do is say hello.  I'm learning from Jared Daimond's work on tribalism and the development of civilization why people are so afraid of strangers.

 My work has had me confronting disease in individuals, schools, universities, and governments. In time I've always been 'vindicated' and invariably some 'bully' falls but I'm never rewarded. Indeed bullies have friends and the corruption seems often to just morph into another corruption so as I've got older if anything I've regretted any fighting I've done. Even now I'm condemned for 'advocating' for my patients 'too much'. Sins of commission are highly frowned on in Canada but sins of omission are rewarded, hence the gross negligence that permeates our health care system. Those who question it are called any number of names. Everyone is vulnerable. These days 'racist' is a common term. I caught a thief and sociopath only to be called 'sexually harassing'. The sociopath thief went free and was rewarded whereas I was punished severely even though I'd sexually harrassed no one.  My crime as it turned out was my very existence.

I don't understand the morality or ethics of this but have found it all helps my prayer life and my relationship with God. Often I want to go home rather than go to work and face the dangers the bureaucracy has put up to perpetuate sickness and to take advantage of the already ill. I actually was told by a senior bureaucrat 'the patient is the enemy, you're do better when you understand that."

 I have tended to see God in strangers and asked myself how would I want to be treated or how would I want a family member treated. This is not at all 'clever' or 'profitable' thinking. Business models are adversarial to a large extent and the 'client' is the 'enemy' except in some enlightened realms. The idea is how to get the most for the least and now as I look around at those 'clever' colleagues I once thought less of I see them taking early retirement or living in fine homes and I frankly can't say my 'sacrifice' and 'holier than thou' thinking or 'rewards in heaven' was particularly wise. I'm happy and content but I don't know things like I once knew things. My certainty has gone with experience and knowledge. When I encounter any fanatic I tend to think 'ignorance'. Only in ignorance can we be truly passionate unless it's on behalf of love. I like Leonard Cohen.  In so many ways my life has been coloured by Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell and Gordon Lightfoot.   They're all  passionate for love. That's the artist.

The joke goes that when bankers get together they talk about art and when artists get together they talk about money. The grass is always greener over the fence. We want what we don't have. Even now I'm thinking about breakfast whereas I was a moment ago thinking about writing. Blogging has been fun. One kind person said I should separate my blogs into 5 blogs. There's the serious one. Then there's the sexy one. Then there's the personal one etc. They were big on organization and I admired that their blog and their life was separate like that. But I was like that as a family physician. I told people about their weight and didn't think that I should exercise as well. Now I'm not a walking image of health and as I compare an obese gym teacher with a non obese gym teacher, if both are saying the same thing, then frankly I'd like the model of health. I think the philosophers of ancient greece and most of the history of the world except a small hundred years of the age of 'intellectualism' asked that there be some coherence between what people said and what they did.

Interestingly I wrote 'fiction' , some erotic stories, only to have these used legally against me as 'evidence' of my wanting to have oral sex with a woman. So there I was being 'tried' on the basis of my 'fiction' and frankly it wasn't anything that Harlequin Romance hadn't published 25 years ago. However  there was this powerful and pompous 'censor' condemning me based on her lack of boundaries between separating reality and fiction.  Just because I wrote in a fictional account about cunnilingus didn't mean I thought about cunnilingus in another setting. Yet Jesus did say what we thought was important. So the 'Secret' as evidenced by "Oprah" would clearly suggest that Steven King and Tarantino should at least be hung in the public square for their negative contributions to our collective thought. I love that Little Sisters has fought these vainglorious 'censors' for years.  I just wish that Little Sisters could get on with the job of selling books to adults and not have to deal with the sorts of people who hide behind courts and committees to get priority exposure to pornography to be disgusted by it and insist others don't see it. I frankly don't care but I've studied history and know even today the Bible is still censored around the world. That's the problem with 'censorship'. Just look at a list of what communist countries have censored and you'll see why I don't trust even the Canadian government to know good literature and new ideas from the limits of their own IQ. Einstein and Gandhi and Jesus would all have been censored by Ottawa or Victoria. There's a need as Jefferson saw for 'separation' of powers. That doesn't mean I should 'separate' my blog. I've been told by wiser minds I should use a pseudonym too but haven't.

This mars edit no longer maintains the 'formatting'. So when I press publish I have to then go through and create paragraphs. It defeats the 'first draft' joy of blogging. I liked that my blog was 'uncensored' and reflected the stream  of consciousness. I figure someday I might go and edit them and create a tidy liftle bit of 'second draft' or 'thirties draft' writing but the idea of a 'blog' is its immediacy. It's not a 'grand work' It's to me like the 'artist's' journal. I know that to others its something else but the idea of a blog is. if they want that sort of thing, then they can go to the trouble of making that themselves. Also because there's billions of blogs out there you can find one you want to read. That's why I'm thankful and a bit surprised by all those who've read whatever it is I've written.  Or maybe they've just liked the pictures. Whatever, it's touching and appreciated.

I was told no one wants to read something so long and convoluteed. Clearly today's style of writing is 'brief'. Friends are back to writing haikus. The scottish 'rant' or the 'English' rave are no longer relevant to the fast times. I like the executive summaries BBC gives the the news but I do sometimes read a friends three page epistle. Mostly no one reads these ends of these blogs. I don't feel like I've cheated when I just read the opening paragraphs of a blog and never get to the end. I'd feel this way with a book. Sometimes I do scroll to the end of a blog to see if theres been an about face or the things remained consistent. It's odd though to consider over a hundred thousand have looked at  the ramblinggs or even looked at the picture.

Today though a thing can go 'viral' and suddenly a million people are looking at your picture of your cat. Humans are odd. I don't know if Shakespeare would go 'viral' as quickly as 'Cheech and Chung'. I still love the symphony but know that it's not funded nearly as well as most rock bands. The same as the income of ballet dancers versus strippers. There's no doubt that the ballet dancers, the males at least, and the women with breast implants, would make far more if they were dancing and stripping but they are ballet dancers and not strippers for a reason. That seems to show the limits of the our present monetary system. It appeals to the base and raises the question of why?

I learned that because I didn't value my writing and gave it away for free it wasn't considered as 'valuable' as another person who put a very high price tag on their writing. I loved therefore hearing Ian Weir say he was writing a book for one reader.  I thought of Narnia being written for his children and the Lord of the Rings being written for the family. My best love poem was written for my lover. I shared if after we broke up because then it wasn't ours alone. Our love had been dragged through the courts and reduced to the shit of passage that it had become. I wanted to keep the memory of the flowers we ate that first day instead.

Time to go. Gilbert wants a walk. I'm as confused as ever. My certainties lies elsewhere. Lord, I love you. Thank you for all, the alpha and omega and all the alphabet of existence, the symbols and signs and all that is behind, before and around everything and nothing. Guide me in all my actions. Be with me always and let me know your presence and show me what it is I can do to be the best I can be and serve you and my community as best I can.

And thank you for all who still read and particularly those who are kind enough to read my blog or at least look at the pictures.

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