Thursday, September 27, 2007

Cat & mouse: interview edition

Juggling Cat's most recent cat & mouse "meme" is a good one.

1. give us the story behind the name of your blog.

My very first post was all about that. The shorter version is that I looked at this blog as an experiment, a way to fling some words at whoever passed by and to see if they'd catch some interest. I actually find the name kind of pretentious now, and I've thought about changing it, but inertia has always been a powerful force in my life.

2. how have your views on god and religion changed from what you were taught as a child to what you believe as an adult?

Hmm. Well, my mom was really into New Age-y kind of stuff -- reincarnation, Edgar Cayce, astrology, parapsychology, and stuff like that -- when I was a kid, so I kind of went along with that. I wasn't really that into it, though, and by my mid-teens I decided that it was mostly nonsense.

Along the way, my mom sent me to a Baptist-run junior high school. (She wanted me to learn the Bible, which I did.) So I got "saved" and all when I was going-on-12. But it only took a couple of years for me to decide that all that born-again stuff was nonsense too. Seemed to me that there was no way that God could be so unfair as to let people be born where there wasn't even access to Christianity and then send them to hell forever for not accepting Christ. And the born-again Christians that I knew were no different from anyone else, anyway, except maybe some of them were more smug about their salvation than most people are. So I decided that maybe what was happening was that we all get reincarnated over and over until we're just about ready for enlightenment, and then Jesus takes us the rest of the way, and that's how he's our Savior.

Damn, this is getting long. Anyway, when I was 20 I became a Mormon. I've also blogged about that, in verse. I was a true believer for a long time. Now I think I'm kind of a Buddhist philosophically, an atheist intellectually, and a Mormon religiously. In other words, I'm not sure what the hell I believe anymore. lol

3. what was the single most important influence in each decade of your life?

60s: Parents, obviously.
70s: Still my parents, I guess.
80s: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It gave my life direction and structure. It led me towards marriage and children and indirectly towards a career.
90s: Wife and kids were number one, of course. Church was still a big, big influence. Also grad school taught me how to think systematically. I already did that instinctively to a large extent, but grad school really grounded me intellectually. And the internet eventually forced me to confront ideas that I'd sometimes hidden from.
00s: Still wife and kids. The internet for letting me work at home. In the last year or so, for making me healthier than I've been for a long, long time.

4. what was your single most significant achievement in each decade of your life?

60s: I dunno -- I was 7 when the decade ended so I guess I didn't "accomplish" all that much?
70s: Getting through childhood/high school alive and sane. Nobody back then knew that childhood depression and Asperger syndrome (which I don't have, but I'm awfully close in several ways) even existed, so getting through my first 17 years without professional help and not killing myself was a good accomplishment for me.
80s: Marrying my wife. I got the girl that every guy wanted. As she said once, if I pursued my career as aggressively as I pursued her, I'd be a rich man. As I said to her, I'm already a rich man for having her.
90s: Fatherhood. Breaking the cycle of poor fathering in my and my wife's families.
00s: Still fatherhood. Seeing that my children are growing up to be reasonably decent and accomplished human beings.

5. you can take a 2 week, all expenses paid fantasy vacation. where are you going & who are you taking?

That's easy. I'd take the family on a safari in Africa.

1 comment:

  1. well said.

    though i would argue that changing the name of your blog would be nothing short of tragic.

    pretentious? maybe. using the actual japanese word for the phrase would be pretentious. but the phrase is eye catching, attention getting, and that is paramount in good blogging.

    unless you are one of those rare jakes who doesn't give a root about readership and recognition, in which case, carry on.


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