I used to cite the simple math of calories in<calories out=weight loss as an argument for the ease of weight loss. I’ll be the first one to admit that I’ve believed and said some extraordinarily stupid stuff. It sometimes takes me a while, and I may never learn, but I have to get over my insecurity of admitting I was wrong and admit that this claim about weight loss was fundamentally naive. Continue reading Weight loss isn’t simply a math problem
Tag Archives: psychology
Operant Conditioning: Reshaping the world’s worst dog
My family’s Ruby is a monster bitch. And I don’t mean this is some cutesy, “I secretly love her,” kind of way. I actually really don’t like her. I know this sounds crazy, how could someone not like their cute dog. It’s simple. Ruby’s not cute. She’s not fluffy or cuddly. She has nearly no redeeming qualities beyond being a biological vacuum cleaner for food scraps. So harsh, I know. Let me explain where this blunt frustration stems from. She stares at me while I am eating or watching a movie or hanging out with friends or family and if I don’t tend to her within her designated time frame, she moves closer, proceeding closer and closer until eventually her nose is inches from my face. If at that moment I still do not give her the attention she demands, she lets loose a roaring, deep, menacing rottweiler-mutt bark, threatening to pierce right through my ear drum with her blaring decibels. If then I continue to hold my increasingly forlorn ground, she will not resign and admit defeat. Instead she whips out her third line of attack: untrimmed claws that Lucifer himself would fear.
Continue reading Operant Conditioning: Reshaping the world’s worst dog
“The Universe manifested into self recognition”
“Seeing as we are the Universe manifested into self recognition we have the right to explore itself. Stop thinking of us as earthlings but rather, as how Carl Sagan put it, hydrogen given 15 billion years of evolution”
This was a comment posted on a facebook picture about the question of how to manage our space travels and interactions with alien lifeforms. This is amazing statement, and one that with adequate knowledge is not hard to recognize, but is seemingly impossible to grasp. We are exactly that; we are atoms trying to understand themselves. We are the universe trying to understand itself. That is a mind boggling realization and makes me soooo happy to acknowledge it. Continue reading “The Universe manifested into self recognition”
I am a brute
My body has no concept of anything. It is a machine. Actin sliding over myosin, ATP shuffling through my cells. I race to show the power of the body and of nothing more. I love my machine. I respect my machine. I want to show the capacity of my machine. That’s a powerful goal, one that I can grasp, one that I can massage, one that I can tweak and train and nourish and stress.
I race to show the power of selection. My mom, in the deepest part of her subconscious chose my dad at least partially for the seemingly superficial reason of his muscles and ability at sport. She may not know it, but she did. My dad, maybe more willing to admit to his desires chose my mom partially based off her physique. She’s strong, fit, and capable. Less superficial, they both saw each other’s drive, the work ethic that underlined and highlighted their personalities. It was a process of selection. They wanted strong children and as little as they may have consciously considered this result, in the deepest well of their subconscious it was ingrained: to choose a mate based on strength. Continue reading I am a brute
Treating the problem
I have tried many times now to comprehend the Connecticut shooting and understand it well enough to put those thoughts into words. Frustration has prevented me from doing so. I will try my hardest to refrain from metaphors in this post but please excuse me if I slip. We have been trained our entire lives to tie so much emotion to everything that it makes it damn near impossible to actually comprehend the actual event in a logical manner. My frustration following the shooting was mostly due to people’s reactions to the incident. It was yet another thing that I watched tear my country apart. Everyone had an opinion. Everyone thought they knew what was best. And when it came to the actual shooter, words such as “evil” and “crazy” were thrown around without any authority. We dehumanize these killers and therefore make it impossible to see the potential for murder among ourselves. Continue reading Treating the problem
Who is better off: the paraplegic or the lottery winner?
I wrote a couple posts about lightweight backpacking last week to summarize my preparation for a sweep to finish hiking the entire Appalachian Trail. Having just graduated, I was stoked about my trip. I was waiting for a rain jacket to come in the mail so that I could peace out and get moving. In my restlessness, on the first day of the new year I asked my friend Scott if he wanted to go climb a mountain. Paris mountain sat just across the valley from my home. It stared at me every time I commuted home. Since I moved in I declared my intentions of standing on top of it and with a snowy peak, it was luring me in stronger than ever before. Continue reading Who is better off: the paraplegic or the lottery winner?
Nature versus nurture
I have been studying genetic abnormalities in depth recently and the fear of such destructive preventable diseases instigated my curiosity to find the ideal age range to have a child. This is kind of deviating from my usual rant but something I have been thinking about a lot recently. Obviously there is no perfect age for everyone but I figured I’d at least try to quantify the balance between nature and nurture.