September 9th, 2009


No shit, Sherlock!

Back when I was in the process of switching over from Yahoo Mail to Google Mail, I made a couple mistakes on the Arcamax site, which is a site that emails cartoons, jokes, and newsletters that people subscribe to. I was trying to switch all my Arcamax things to Gmail, but two things I thought were New Yorker cartoons ended up being:
1. A parenting newsletter.
2. A newsletter for people who own cats and/or dogs.
I got the New Yorker cartoons all added on, once I realized the mistake, but I decided to keep these two things on as well because they sometimes yield interesting things. For example, I've forwarded several of the cat things to Lilla, since she owns a cat.

Well today I got the parenting one and the headline is "Kids Can Be Cruel To Overweight Children." Well no shit Sherlock! Next you'll be telling me the Pope has converted to Catholicism, that bears have been observed pooping in the woods, and that studies show water is wet! I know better than most. But I don't blame the kids, I blame the parents. Children aren't born with any prejudices, they learn them from adults. And what adults so often fail to realize is that, with children, every waking moment is a learning experience. Kids don't just learn when you want them to learn, they learn ALL THE FUCKING TIME. And they exaggerate everything they learn, too. So all it takes is one snide remark or even one bit of significant body language for children to pick up a prejudice from an adult. And since small children have usually not yet figured out that the adults in their lives are not infallible Deities who are absolutely right about everything, anything adults do is gospel to them.

Which, that's something else adults tend to forget about children: children don't learn as well from words as they do from experience. Adults tend to ignore their own personal experiences of things and go for what others tell them that they should believe and behave, while kids tend to be the opposite of that.

The worst part of all this is, there really is very little difference between children and adults. The only differences, really, is that adults are more set in their ways, are less likely to listen to their experiences, are more likely to be conformists, and tend to develop this undeserved superiority complex. It's appalling how children are treated these days. Oh sure, they're bundled up and kept "safe" - safe from experiencing the world as they should. Locked indoors, made to live in fear of everyone who isn't family, stuck in front of the boob tube. And all the while the adults tend to think themselves so superior, when it's completely undeserved. Sure, they've been around longer, and have more experience (I wonder how much "more experience" really means when most adults tend to ignore their experience), but children go from pretty much blank slates to being able to walk and talk in less than two years, even being able to learn more than one language as easily as their first. I find that incredibly impressive.

EDIT: Back to bullying, since another of the parenting newsletters talked about bullying. There was one of those advice column things in it, where these people said their 11 year old was being bullied by two different people in her school, and they were confused that the principal or whatever was asking the girl for witnesses to the bullying.

You know what? I think bullying in school should be treated the same as it's treated in real life. Someone bullies you verbally, they get charged with harassment. Someone bullies you physically, the cops come in and arrest them for assault. I seriously believe those kinds of steps should be taken; should cut the bullying down to a minimum if the kids know they'll get arrested for assault. I am not joking in the slightest about this. I really wish I could have been taken seriously - I mean really seriously, not the "oh we'll see what we can do about it" 'seriously' that I got - when I was being bullied. Which was all the way from kindergarten until graduation day of high school.

Of course, something else needs to change about the education system, too, in order to end shit like this. Schools as they are now, are propaganda-driven institutions. Know what else is an institution? Prisons. And "prison" isn't far from the truth of what a school is these days, especially with all the locker checks, security checkpoints, metal detectors and crap. Schools have always been vaguely like prisons. These days, they ARE prisons.

Well, I'm going to end this rant here.

Writer's Block: Finders keepers?

If you found a $100 at the library, would you pocket it or turn it in? What about at a diner or pub? Confess!
Let's see, cash in a library book. Cash being untraceable, hmm... I'm torn. Part of me says "Pocket it! Finders keepers, losers weepers! It's no different from finding a $1 or a fiver on the ground." Another part of me would ask the librarian who checked out the book last. Then the first part says "Well if the librarians called them to ask them if they left cash in their book, of COURSE they'll say say it's theirs, whether it is or not! Come on, take the cash! If they're fool enough to put their money in a library book, then they deserve to never see it again!" And then that side would probably win.

Will write funny stuff for food

Okay, people. So far, you've enjoyed a few free issues and articles of Ye Olde Goldyn Appyl Presse, my Discordian newspaper with news from another universe much weirder than ours (for samples, click the YOGAP tag). And I've occasionally put free "breaking news" headlines without stories attached to them on my Twitter. But now I'm thinking YOGAP could be my best option for going into cyberfunded creativity.

Basically what that means is, if you like what you've seen of YOGAP so far, and want to see more, I will only do updates for money now. The way it works on my friend ysabetwordsmith's LJ is she defines monetary goals for each project, the cost based on length and type. For example, she has $5, $10, and $15 poems (among others). People donate to her PayPal account and specify which project they're helping to fund. When a project reaches its goal, the project is released on her LJ for all to read, even if they didn't contribute monetarily (one can contribute by spreading the word, for example).

Since I'm just starting on this, I welcome suggestions for projects and suggestions for a project- or size-to-cost system for these. Unfortunately LoudTwitter is down, so any of these breaking news headlines I get from now on I will have to import manually from Twitter, but it's worth it.

EDIT: These prices are subject to changes at my whim, but most likely in a "lower" direction.

I figure, since my brain often comes up with weird YOGAP stuff, what better project than it?

Now I just have to define some goals/projects. Hmm... okay (prices based on size and difficulty to do):

1. "Breaking news" articles: This category of projects expands on the previous "breaking news" headlines, so they'll finally have articles attached. I figure, I can tease y'all with these headlines and make you beg for an article to go with it. :-D This will be $3.

2. "Opinion column" - I think I'll take votes for which character should do the opinion column each time it comes out (I like mixing it up), and I'm always open to suggestions for topics. I and my characters have lots of opinions, but sometimes its very hard thinking of a good topic for an opinion column. I think I'll go with $6 for one of these, as they're a little harder to write.

3. "Weather forecasts" for the week (funny, of course) - $3

4. "Interesting People Around The World" - Always a laugh. Hard to think of ideas for though. I'm going to say $8.

5. "Crime Report" - Amusing fictional crimes and criminals from around the world. $5. Those who contribute to this project can have their home city show up in the reports. If one contributes to this project and also an additional amount (no matter how much or how little) to the general fund, you can have someone you don't like (first name and/or same initials only) be named a criminal in the reports, doing something incredibly stupid.

6. "Dischordian Horrorscopes." - Horoscopes that don't pull any punches. Your life is about to take a serious turn for the worst if you don't listen to our warnings. This feature might just save your life. Is $10 $6 too much to ask for such a worthwhile feature?

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1. Use my PayPal donate button located here. Or, alternatively, you can send cash or checks. (Ask me for my address if you want to do that.) But PayPal is free and fairly easy to sign up for, so it's preferred. Plus, I believe one can pay money to someone's PayPal with a credit card.

2. Put in the notes/message to me section whether you're donating to a specific project (please specify which one) or to the general cyberfunded creativity fund (any donations not specified to either will go to the general cyberfunded creativity fund.)

3. Whether or not you can contribute monetarily, you can always spread the word. If there are projects you want to hurry up and get funded, post to your LJ about it. Post to Twitter! Tell your Facebook! Any and all social networks you're on, feel free to tell people!