AIDS Walk 2019

The short version is:

I’m participating in the Raleigh AIDS Walk and 5K Run again, and I need your help to reach my fundraising goal. I’m looking for small donations from friends and family. If everyone who reads this gives at least $5, we should hit the mark.

Click here to donate.

Click here to learn more about the event.

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When I’m Depressed, I Don’t Vent — I Heap

“It could well be said that we all live pretty well in one great heap, all of us, differentiated as we otherwise are by the countless and profound variations that have developed over time. All in one heap! Something urgent drives us together, and nothing can prevent us from satisfying its urging. All our laws and institutions, the few I still remember and the countless I have forgotten, go back to the greatest joy that we are capable of, the warmth of togetherness.”

Kafka, Investigations of a Dog

When I’m depressed, it helps me to write things down. While I’m thinking in scattershot, I can take notes, get them on paper, and then rearrange them to make more sense in a better moment. The act of writing brings clarity. It shines light. It provides exposure.

It’s a catch-22, though.

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Over the Wall

Manchester ruins wall

I’m getting rid of my Facebook.

I made my profile back in 2008 about a week after I almost missed a birthday party because the invitations were sent via Facebook event. By that point I was already a creature of the internet, and there were things about the platform that made me bristle.

I was a denizen of video game message boards, so The Social Network was alien to me in a lot of ways. It annihilated topicality. Its forces of moderation were opaque and incorporeal. And its very purpose was to reject anonymity.

But interacting with real names on the internet has never been the same as interacting with real people. Absent anonymity, authenticity doesn’t take over. And despite its stated mission, Facebook has never made me feel closer to anyone.

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I went on a run today.

I went on a run today.

I got up and did my seven-minute workout to warm up, and then I walked out to the street and started running.

It was a short loop, just through the neighborhood, around the nearby Catholic school. I closed the loop out with a short stint on the Greenway access right by my apartment. I ran, carrying my keys and my phone.

When I hit the parking lot again, I slowed to a walk and got control of my breathing.

Back in my apartment, I did another seven-minute workout, the one I unlocked that focuses on stretching.

I showered.

It was more of a jog than a run.

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Things Heard While Playing Destiny 2

Destiny 2 Dawnblade Warlock daybreak.jpg

The most important thing to know about Destiny 2 is that, if you play it, you play it with other people. Even if you start out on your own, you will meet others and link up with them on an inexorable journey. If you don’t, you’ll stop playing altogether.

For that reason, Destiny 2 is a game you experience through dialogue. Not with characters (you play as a silent protagonist), but with your companions, whomever they may be.

These are some of the conversations you should expect to have.

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Neighbors, Numbers

John McCain walks onto the Senate floor Tom Williams CQ Roll Call Getty.jpg
Photo: Tom Williams / CQ Roll Call / Getty

My neighbor introduced himself to me a few weeks ago.

He told me that he frequents McAlister’s Deli at North Hills, and that he likes to read crime novels. His favorite author is Patricia Cornwell.

(I also know from living in the apartment below him that he watches a lot of Law & Order. The “bong-bong” carries through the floor.)

He has amblyopia, and there’s a slight hesitation before he speaks. He volunteered a lot of this information without my asking.

At one point, he had a job working with computers, but he no longer works. He said he stopped after he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

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Muddle

The election party I went to felt wrong from the moment I walked in.

There was a band playing music that sounded like nothing, and there was popcorn with the character of styrofoam. The beer was good at least, but the TV screens felt small for the crowd.

Some friends and I walked up shortly after the polls closed in NC (except for Durham county), and there was already a hint of bad news. It didn’t look good for Deborah Ross in the US Senate race.

The biggest cheer came when they called the Wake county transit referendum in favor of the For vote. Others were false alarms as we saw the percents and compared them to the number of ballots counted.

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Heap (Politics Edition)

Vote Raleigh Sticker Jedidiah Gant.jpg
Image: Jedidiah Gant / New Raleigh

Early voting ended on Saturday. The election takes place on Tuesday. My mother called me the other day and told me that she went and cast her ballot. These are the circumstances in which I’m finally writing down my thoughts on the election, the campaign, the state of things. You know, stuff I should have written down weeks ago when it meant something.

This is going to be disjointed, but I think that’s the only way to get it done at this point.

Inhale.

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