Non-Sequitur: Dog Friends vs. Dog Owners

Someone once walked into my office with a basket of Chihuahua puppies. "Here, you want to hold one?" "Eww, no." "What, you don't like dogs?" "No, I LOVE dogs!" I threw up my hands and walked away. There was no way I was going to be able to explain why "loving dogs" and "feeling creeped out by Chihuahua puppies" could coexist in one person.I've realized that most people, even supposed dog lovers, don't really have a feel for the fact that there's somebody THERE in a dog's head, a being with … [Read more...]

Gender Asymmetry, Again

I had a post a bit more than a year ago titled A Third Approach to Gender Equality.The heart of the post was the assertion that male and female humans have certain distinct characteristics separate from each other, and that taking those differences into account -- through an overview that admits of something I call "gender asymmetry" -- is necessary to develop approaches to equality.Men have advantages over women. For instance, men's naturally greater strength and athletic ability. Which … [Read more...]

Annoying Thoughts on the Verge of Christmas

The world around us – through holiday stories, songs, animated movies, TV shows, sweet little homilies delivered to us daily in every medium -- teaches us about automatic happy endings, happily-ever-afters, free gifts delivered for the price of being “good,” all sorts of magical happy inevitabilities, all of which will come to us as we relax and live our lives.But it never teaches us those things AREN’T automatically true. We’re left to figure out on our own that there’s no Santa, no Care Bea … [Read more...]

Starbucks, Part Deux: Chasing the Red Dot

Watch the video.The cats are you and I. The guy holding the laser is the media. The red dot is the Starbucks coffee cup story.I'm going to call them Red Dot Stories from now on.They don't mean anything. They're not significant in any way. And yet we still leap excitedly to follow and talk about them. Just like cats, we allow ourselves to be jerked around by that irresistible fascination with the red dot. … [Read more...]

Beta Culture: Beyond Veterans Day

I confess to mixed feelings about November 11.I have a number of fairly conservative friends, and you can count on Veterans Day to kick off a massed booming v0lley of flag-wavery -- heartfelt prayers, cheers, and best wishes for the men and women in uniform, those gallant, selfless warriors willing to give their lives for our freedom.I can never join in with such fervent abandon. I mean, I GET Veterans Day. But still, considering some of the things the U.S. military has done ... mixed … [Read more...]

Beta Culture: The Poison of Stories

I'm having this idea. Haven't worked it out completely, but … here's the main part.First, let's go back to earlier in the year and look at this post: Beta Culture: Seeing the Brackets. (Its illo is just to the right here.)This is a sister post to that one, and to me clarifies and expands what I was really getting at back then. So:A great deal of what we humans do in day-to-day living is creating stories to live by.Some of them might be stories of personal identity – Faithful Bel … [Read more...]


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