Archive for January, 2015

In Canon

I am moving out. After 4 years living near Dampoort station, a place unique in the world, I’ll be moving to the other station, on the other side of town. The area isn’t half as awesome as where I’m coming from, but, you know, it doesn’t need to be.

One roommate is coming with (actually it would be more accurate to say, I’m going with her) and one is joining us so I’ll be living together with 2 women in an apartment by St. Pieters station and since you ask, yes, I do think that is going to end well.

So in the middle of getting my papers in order in anticipation of my son, I am also moving all my stuff. I just got down from a recon mission in the attic, nearly breaking my legs, trying to collect everything that I own after it has been moved 6 times by different people and buried under years of about 10 roommates worth of stuff.

I’m finding things I thought long gone, and not finding things I want to find. My old ‘Ghent University’ sweater seems to have gone up in smoke, but it would appear that those millions of empty CD boxes, I decided to keep after the CDs themselves got stolen.

Among this gigantic pile of shit that I may or may not care about, I just found my old photos. A little box from my very first cell phone (the Philips Savvy) stuffed with analog photographs that I forgot existed. Mostly pictures of me, because those are the ones people used to give. And what a sight it is. (more…)

Matter Over Mind

After a monthly visit to the depths of Wikipedia, I learned that I am a materialist. Not in the classical sense, but in the sense that I strongly believe that a human being’s mind is the result of the structure inside their brain, coupled with things like hormones and oxygen intake, and nothing else. That every decision we make can be traced back to its roots and no matter how deeply we dig, we will never encounter the holy grail of countless religious and philosophical claims called, “The Soul”. Because it does not exist. (more…)

Uncomfortable Silence

I am in Lustenice, Czech Republic right now. It is actually spelled differently but my keyboard, like my mind, can’t handle the local language very well.
I’m trying to learn, and it might be a bit early to judge but I think one can state that my progress, if at all existent, is slow. With only a very faint connection to both Germanic and Latin languages, it is quite different from the 3-4 that I am acquainted with (I am counting my knowledge of German, Norwegian and Japanese together into 0.65 of a language). I have to start from scratch.

Czech is also a ‘synthetic’ language, as opposed to English, which is ‘analytic’ in nature. The context of a sentence influences its content, not by adding words like I am used to, but by changing them. There is, for example, no word for ‘not’. There is, or there isn’t.
So no basic words can be freely translated. Every time I ask the locals what a certain something is, I get a sigh and the start of a lecture on grammar. It’s quite frustrating.