happiness vs freedom.

I've been thinking a lot about death lately. Sorry for the morbid theme, I know it's not the greatest start to a blog post. The way that I understand it is that death is just the time you spent before you were born. It's just nothing. You have no recollection of it, because you were nothing before you were born. And so you will be nothing after you die. That part I've pretty much grasped and am okay with. But the part that I'm not okay with, is that life is so short. I know people say that all the time, but it hasn't really hit me until now. Because my life, in comparison to the time span of the earth's existence, is basically non-existent. Like, my life, means nothing. Seriously. It means jack shit. The earth is 4.5 billion years old, and I'm probably going to live until I'm 90 (because I'm part Asian and those Asian genes are strong). My life will have contributed to 0.0000002% of the earth's existence. It's sort of humbling. Humbling and depressing. It makes you want to live longer. I get anxious over the fact that I don't think I have enough time to do everything. Like, I need to stay in one of those glass igloos in Finland and see the Aurora Borealis, meet a shaman in Peru and do an Ayahuasca ceremony, eat beignets in New Orleans (and see all of the live jazz), drive across America, plus I have to live in Hawaii at some point. And do a trip around Australia. And I need to start my own business. And put a BRILLIANT idea I have on Kickstarter (shout out to any electrical engineers - I need halp). When I say "I" I mean "we" by the way. For the most part. I think Wade would sit out of the Ayahuasca ceremony. And the live jazz.

Seriously though, how is this place even real.

But then again Alan Watts said, "What you do is what the whole universe is doing at the place you call here and now. You are something the whole universe is doing, in the same way that a wave is something the whole ocean is doing... The real deep down you, is the whole universe." So maybe everything I just said about how little an impact my life has on the entire universe, is actually false. I mean, Alan Watts was pretty smart. And that's coming from someone who was in Advanced English at school.

I miss my year 11 English Literature class with Mr Brown. Or was it Browne? I can't remember now. There were only 7 people in that class. It was brilliant. I remember I pretended to read Pride & Prejudice because FUCK THAT BOOK. I was not entertained. At all. Apart from the sections with Mr Darcy in it. I literally just flicked through the pages until I saw the word Darcy and then kept reading. I remember we had to do an assignment where we wrote in the Jane Austen style. He was like, "You used way too many thous." I basically know two ways of writing. Old timey writing, and contemporary writing. No in between. And my old timey writing isn't good. And my this timey writing is just good enough for blogging. I would like to write a book someday. But I'm terrible at creative writing. I basically can only write non-fiction. And it has to directly involve things that have happened to me. Man I sound so narcissistic.

Now that I don't work in hospitality I don't have any good stories to tell about the seriously alarming number of retards that are out in this world. I haven't written about my new job yet either. Apparently I'm qualified to be a "Marketing Manager". I started back in January. It's good to be back in an office. I spent almost a year in hospitality, and I'm pretty sure I never want to spend any of my life ever again working in that god forsaken industry. It really makes you hate people. And also appreciate nice people. And also get comfortable with sexual harassment. Like that time I was petting a dude's puppy, and then his friend said to me, "I wish I were a dog so you would pet me."

What.

The guy was probably in his late 30's to early 40's. I guess that worked on some poor woman and now he's forever relying on the "pet me" pick up line to impress the ladies. Honestly. What in the actual fuck. Why would you say that to someone? How could you think that would come off as genuine and charming? I just awkwardly laughed and then said how dogs are better than humans. Hint hint mother fucker.

The other thing that's nice about not working in hospitality is not having to put up with people's bullshit orders. Like skinny milkshakes. When people ordered skinny milkshakes, I actually wanted to smash my head against the wall just to put myself out of the misery that was dealing with people who thought it was socially acceptable to order a milkshake with skinny milk. It's a milkshake. There's chocolate syrup in it, and there's sugary, fatty ice cream in it. The skinny milk does nothing, apart from make yourself feel better about the fact that you're a grown woman ordering a milkshake. I have nothing against adults drinking milkshakes. I love milkshakes. But just accept the fact that it's a fucking milkshake. Who gives a shit. The whole point of being an adult is so you can do whatever you want. Like eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for dinner.

A friend got me on to the Sam Harris podcast and I am totally hooked. I think Sam Harris is fascinating. The dude got a Ph.D. in cognitive neuroscience at the age of 42. That's cool. I'd like to go back to school at some point. If I didn't need to make money, I would totally be doing Religious Studies or Games Design right now. Another thing I got out of the Sam Harris podcast was an episode I listened to called 'Being Good and Doing Good: A Conversation with William MacAskill'. MacAskill proposed a question on morality that I found very interesting and sort of confronting. I'll propose it to you and you can tell me what you think. You're in a burning house. There's a child in one room (not your child, just a random child - but you can see the child in the room) and in the other room is a Picasso piece worth millions of dollars. Those millions of dollars will directly save 100 children from dying in Africa. FYI I'm paraphrasing the question to make it easier. You can only save one. Which do you save? It's an interesting question about our idea of morality, how we are far less impacted by what occurs on the other side of the world, than what occurs right in front of us, and what a life is worth. I for one, believe I would save the child. But the smarter and more heroic choice would be to save the painting. 1 child's life for 100 children is not a good trade. No one would ever agree that sacrificing 100 children to save 1 is the smart move. But I honestly don't think I would be able to just leave the child and be like, "Yeah I made the right choice." Anyway, I would be interested to know what other people's responses are to this. I do suggest you listen to the episode though to really grasp the concept as it is so eloquently explained by MacAskill.

I also recommend listening to 'What Do Jihadists Really Want?'

Wade does this thing where if I'm home alone, he thinks it's okay to try and be as stealthy as possible so that I don't know he's home, until he's directly behind me breathing down my neck. I've explained to him multiple times why I don't find this funny, however he doesn't really care. And then the other day he came home while I was doing laundry and singing offensively loud. And not just singing loud, but singing like, Mariah Carey style. You know the type of singing that you do when you know that nobody else can hear you. And that you'd rather die, than let someone else hear you sing like that. Well yeah, he came home and sneaked up on me in the middle of doing that. We're divorced now.

What's the deal with handling fees? I know that sounded like the beginning of an 80's stand up bit. But I'm looking at buying tickets to see Hannibal Buress in December and Ticketmaster want to charge an $8.25 handling fee per transaction. Hey, how about go fuck yourself. What is involved in this handling fee, when I'm booking the tickets ONLINE. Nobody handles them. It's done digitally. A computer does it. It's like when you're booking flights and then all of a sudden you're getting charged for a booking fee, online transaction fee, plane tax, luggage handling fee, tarmac maintenance tax and fucking ebola virus gst.

Alright, I'm going to weigh in on the 18C controversy. If you read my blog, you can probably assume where I stand on it already - but here we go just for fun. My problem with 18C is that we're saying it's illegal to offend someone, based on their appearance. Now, before you get your panties in a bunch about the fact that repealing 18C means you support racism (which I obviously don't), my opposition to 18C stems from a few things. Firstly, here's what is actually stated:

Offensive behaviour because of race, colour or national or ethnic origin
             (1)  It is unlawful for a person to do an act, otherwise than in private, if:
                     (a)  the act is reasonably likely, in all the circumstances, to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate another person or a group of people; and
                     (b)  the act is done because of the race, colour or national or ethnic origin of the other person or of some or all of the people in the group.

I immediately see problems here because of the word "offend". What is offensive? Who decides this? What may be offensive to you, may not be to me. My point is, "offensive" is way too ambiguous. Secondly, if it is illegal to offend someone based on their race, colour or national or ethnic origin, why isn't it illegal for someone to offend me because I'm a woman? Does this mean that white males can take legal action towards people that harass them because of their white male privilege? Or are we only talking about dark skinned people? Are there double standards in place? And listen, just because I think that it shouldn't be illegal to be racist, doesn't mean I support racism. And if you don't believe me, well then stop reading my blog because you're just hearing what you want to hear. I've seen first hand the impact of racism on my own family. My Dad and my Pop both dealt with horrible acts of racism in their lifetimes. My Dad within the last 10 years has still experienced racism. So yes, although I myself haven't experienced racism (although I have experienced sexual harassment so I think I have some grounds to know what it's like to be harassed because of your appearance), I can tell you that I have felt the pain of discrimination. And even then, I still don't want it to be illegal. It's a very slippery slope when Governments start making it illegal to say words, or draw pictures. 18C already infringes on my own right to freedom of speech, and the implied freedom of political communication. What laws will be put in place next? Bill Leak's cartoon caused controversy over the fact that it was offensive to Indigenous people. Will we condemn every single person that offends us and demand that they be removed from the public eye, that they be fired or publicly shamed because they expressed a controversial view point? What about Charlie Hebdo? Should it be illegal to draw a picture of a religious figure? Did they have it coming because how dare they express a viewpoint different to another group of people? A group of people that they knew would take it more offensively than the rest of the world - they should've known not to kick the hornet's nest right? Free thought grants me the ability to say, "Two plus two equals five." And it allows you to say to me, "No, it equals four," or "No, you're dumb," or "Yes! I agree with you!" Where do we draw the line on what we can and can't say? When we are told, "Actually you can't say that two plus two equals five, that's offensive to mathematicians," well what authority are you to tell me that? When we give up our right to free speech to a very powerful group of people, what's left? If we can't even say what we think, does that mean we'll be banning all forms of journalism, or the right to religion, or the right to dress how you want to dress? George Orwell once wrote, "The choice for mankind lies between freedom and happiness and for the great bulk of mankind, happiness is better."

So what do you choose? That no one ever be offended, and we all live in a censored land full of happiness (perceived happiness however), or a world of free thought, free expression and free speech? I know which one I choose. I'm exercising my right through this blog. My blog is offensive (to some). Should I be condemned? Should I lose my job because of what I say? Those carrying the pitchforks and leading the witch hunts, are also exercising their right to free expression. But when we can no longer exercise that right, what's left? There can only be disagreement, if there is agreement. There can only be good, if there is bad. There can only be offensiveness, if there is pleasantness. And how can their be real happiness, without the freedom to be happy?
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