Efficient Learning: Diary, 2/3 to 2/6/21

Even a schedule isn’t necessary; just a bookshelf. Each morning—mornings are best for this kind of work—take the book at the left, sit down with it, and go through it, either page-by-page or marker-by-marker (tape flags for target pages).

Diary, 1/24 to 1/28/2021

[Maslow's Motivation and Personality] provoked a lot of thought, though not necessarily anything earthshaking; I’ll have more to say when I type the quotes. It seemed to take a very long time. On 1/1/21 above I mention plodding through it, including having finished the first two chapters, so it took somewhat longer than three weeks.

Diary, 2/28 to 12/25/20, My Return to Civilization

Sometimes when I ponder events of my childhood or youth, I feel a twinge of rage against that stupid boy, wanting, sorta, to choke or punch him. Is this guilt, or shame, or what? Shopped at Barnes & Noble yesterday and spent about $120.00, coming home with three books...

Diary, 1/22 to 1/31/20

Yesterday was unforgettable.  In the morning I ate at Lorene’s, not wanting to take the time to go to Macdonald’s, and not wanting to get that much sodium after yesterday’s high dose.  Then, walking towards Dagny’s for Shut Up and Write, I saw a well-built black man running along 20th Street in my direction.  I paused to let him pass, but he didn’t run past—instead, he punched me in the face while speaking loudly to me, words that made little impression.  I turned away...

Diary, 8/18 to 8/25/19

Well, I started a Pathfinder Meetup and acquired a group member within the first hour. I doubt that J or Pablo will be interested. If I can get just two enthusiastic members, well, that’s two potential friends. I’ve also discovered just a ton of stuff on the Internet, no surprise. I haven’t found any online play yet, but surely it’s out there. I’m not sure that I want that, because I’d then want home Internet…well, I wouldn’t necessarily fall into the same black hole that I discovered previously, i.e., something like “all Twitter, all the time.” But the real point of Pathfinder is, as always, new potential friends. I wonder ...

Diary, 8/11 to 8/17/19

Morita Therapy advises, “do what needs doing.” In my case, that would be housework. Is housework self-actualizing? Is housework flying high? Do I have any excuse for not doing housework? Yes, it’s called “housework be damned.” Housework is not my goal, it’s other people’s goal. It’s society’s goal for me. I say this even though I value accomplished ...

Diary, 7/31 to 8/4/19

Colin McGinn: The Making of a Philosopher: My Journey Through Twentieth-Century Philosophy is regrettably tedious because it labors over some pragmatically useless, thus very dull, points of analytic philosophy (via Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Investigations and Kripke’s interpretation thereof). There’s only ninety pages to go, but I’m thinking that I’ll skim the rest, to see if it gets into anything I’ll find useful to my own thoughts. I was thinking early on that this would be a great introduction to philosophy for beginners...

Diary, 7/24 to 7/31/19

I’ve been reading Richard Rorty: Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature, which I think of as “my next step in philosophy.” I read this once before with the feeling that it was rather over my head, and have occasionally reviewed my typed quotes. But the “Introduction” by Michael Williams seems very comprehensible and persuasive—if I can keep its lessons in mind, probably by periodic reviews, I can pretty much let the sticky parts go.

Diary, 7/15 to 7/23/19

I’m thinking that the reading I do, which I called “sifting” a while back, mostly doesn’t stick except in the form of externalized memory. That is, I highlight in books and/or type out quotes in my Collected Quotations book, but I don’t often review these products. So I sift out the gems, but don’t make much use of them. I need to make more use of them. Then I won’t be feeling like I’m just wasting time. In fact, the process, which grew by itself, seems efficient...

Diary, 6/23 to 6/27/19

Even as I think of saying, “The world doesn’t need more contenders,” etc., another voice pipes up: “So you’re content to waste your gifts.” No, I guess I’m not content, it’s probably accurate to say that I’ve never been content, with the possible exception of the time after I had decided that I wanted to be a novelist. I quickly discovered that what I really wanted was to have the perks without doing the work.

Diary, 6/19 to 6/22/19

So, am I going to commit to writing, or not? Turning Pro? I think that I must—I think I’m at a “make or break” point in my life, and must make something lest I break something. It seems most natural to start each day with diary writing, unless some day I wake with an urgent need to work on another project. Of course, it would be a mistake to allow myself to be distracted by the diary to the point that I never work on anything else.