Getting “In-Shape,” and MSM Letting Us Down Bigtime

Diary 8/12 to 8/14/22: Cognitive fatigue; sex education; Hunter Killer DVD; dreams; Hemlock Club; Camus; Chris Hedges and the collapse of civilization; signing up for tour of a gym.

Copyright 2022 (text only) by Alan Carl Nicoll
All Rights Reserved

Daily workout?

[Late addition: “Chris Hayes Explains Why MSNBC IGNORES Important Issues–They’re Ratings Killers!” As opposed to climate change, which is a people killer… Link to article]

Chris Hayes of MSNBC…old news

{8/13/22} continued.

From Neuroscience News today:  “Extended intense cognitive work causes potentially toxic byproducts to build up in the prefrontal cortex. This alters control over decision-making, causing a shift toward low-cost actions that require less effort as cognitive fatigue sets in.”

Also:  “While more commonly associated with promoting aggressive behaviors, testosterone can also promote social affection and prosocial behaviors in males, a new study on gerbils finds.”  Look out for those aggressive gerbils!

Something from Jessica Valenti:  “And an op-ed in the Los Angeles Times argues that we need better sex education now more than ever. That goes without saying, obviously, but had to include a link to the piece for this fact alone: ‘Only 16 states require that the information taught in sex education be medically accurate.’”  The website offers news exclusively about abortion in America.

How sad is it that such laws are required?  How sad is it that there are (I’d guess) even fewer laws requiring schools to not lie about the history of slavery in America?

Watched Hunter Killer (2018), a submarine/Navy Seal action movie starring Gerard Butler and Gary Oldman.  I thought it was quite good, only occasionally stupid.  Rotten Tomatoes scores 37% and 68% from critics and audiences, respectively.  As usual, the audiences have it right as far as I’m concerned.


A dream from 3:00 am.  I’m in a school classroom, standing facing a very tall young woman.  She towers over me by a head.  I say that I like how tall she is.  She’s attractive and somewhat awkward.  Somehow I am moving in and hugging her.  She does not react.  I feel her bony back, the shoulder blades, the vertebrae, gently all over.  The hug becomes warmer and more intimate, and the woman is murmuring appreciatively, she is practically clinging to me.  That’s it.


Before getting up this morning, after six, another brief dream:  someone placing dark bat stars in a kind of rack as is used to hold folders in an office.  The rack then is gone and there is a round colony of sea worms, or so it looks to me, and the bat stars are pushed into this writhing mass.  They disappear, reappear, and it becomes apparent eventually that they are being consumed—what I had taken for worms turns out to be camouflage, possibly, of three or four large brown and beige crustaceans who are chomping on the starfish.

Hemlock Club today.  Also Sam’s last day at work.  She said she would attend next week and I’m looking forward to that.

An interesting bit of information about Neil came to light at the HC: although he knew that Sam did not want it known that she’s a psychologist, Neil told Eric about it.  I was at Panera Bread at 8:10 for the meeting. Nobody showed up or even called me until 10:00.  Neil and Eric were picking up trash at a park. Would have been nice to be informed about this, say, last night?  Despite these lapses, I am not mad at Neil, though I can’t claim to understand him.  I ate too many cinnamon rolls.

“Exhausted” Photo by cottonbro on

And I watched too many episodes of Family Guy this evening, though I was somewhat ruined for “work” by six and a half hours of sitting in Panera Bread.  Now I’m sorta ready for work; I’m thinking that I’ll focus on getting the quotes from Camus down on (electronic) paper, since the book has to go back and I’ll be going to the library Monday to pick up an item on hold.  One hopes I can squeeze in a visit to In-Shape, the gym that is easiest for me to get to on the bus; since the library doesn’t open until 11:00, this should not be difficult.

Spent an hour on notes from Camus’s Notebooks 1942-1951.  I’m ready for a trashy movie, then bed.


Chris Hedges this morning concludes a column, “We Are Not the First Civilization to Collapse, But We Will Probably Be the Last,” thusly:  “The historian Arnold Toynbee, who singled out unchecked militarism as the fatal blow to past empires, argued that civilizations are not murdered, but commit suicide. They fail to adapt to a crisis, ensuring their own obliteration. Our civilization’s collapse will be unique in size, magnified by the destructive force of our fossil fuel-driven industrial society. But it will replicate the familiar patterns of collapse that toppled civilizations of the past. The difference will be in scale, and  this time there will be no exit.”  The whole column is worth reading regarding this crisis of all crises.

An email this morning from Planned Parenthood requests that I join them in canvassing for their preferred politicians.  What could I do, go to two neighbors’ houses to blunder through an interview, get tired, and quit?  I’m not cut out for this kind of job, for so many reasons.

Watched Russell Brand on YouTube a day or two ago.  He said, “What creates conspiracy theory?  Lack of transparency.”  This seems obvious, yet who says it?  The mainstream media is seriously letting us down.

Finished with the Camus Notebooks quotes.  I have a 260-page file of Collected Quotations that needs some editing; that’s my next major word processing task.  There are many books that I’d like to collect quotes from, but that’s not really a priority—definitely second after getting my Prison Diary dictated (i.e., into the computer).

Scheduled an appointment for tomorrow for In-Shape, a gym, at 10:00 am, at the White Lane facility.  Their website offers a 50% discount on the first month’s membership, and free sign-up or annual fee, if you enter the discount code.  There’s also a senior discount of 20%, presumably not in addition.  We’ll see what they offer tomorrow.

I haven’t visited Planet Fitness yet because it requires two bus rides to get there; In-Shape only one.  If the connection is good, it wouldn’t matter too much until, sooner or later, I miss the connection—then it’s often a half hour wait.

Copyright 2022 (text only) by Alan Carl Nicoll
All Rights Reserved

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