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LOOPY - Anchoring Bias


... LOOPY how-to-develop-a-model summary from yesterday's (!) MIT Sloan School article by Meredith Somers "This Sri Lankan jewelry enterprise is a study in systems thinking" at :

  1. State the problem
  2. Map how things are connected
  3. Understand multipliers, lags, limiters, and accumulations

^z - 2022-01-27



(sketch thanks to LOOPY2, an ultralight tool for systems thinking ©2021 MITRE Corporation ...) - ^z - 2022-03-??

think about LOOPYs for Strategic Deterrence (or "strategic detergents") such as: LOOPY diagram of male vs female demographic challenges in education & economy? - starter sketch ...

LOOPY projects & meta-projects?

Good Notation

Graphical Languages for Thinking Better

... one method to rule them all? or separate languages? linkages? zoom in? zoom out?

types of nodes

types of links:


Methods to Depict:

-- z 2021-03-16 14:14 UTC

[1] -- summarize/listify "Life skills that help inside and outside of schools - By Rifka Schonfeld"

In their book, “Executive Skills in Children and Adolescents,” Peg Dawson and Richard Guare explain:

Executive skills allow us to organize our behavior over time and override immediate demands in favor of longer-term goals. Through the use of these skills, we can plan and organize activities, sustain attention, and persist to complete a task. Executive skills enable us to manage our emotions and monitor our thoughts to work more efficiently and effectively. Simply stated, these skills help us to regulate our behavior.

Among the individual skills that allow people to self-regulate are:

• Planning: the ability to create a roadmap to reach a goal. This also includes the ability to focus only on what is important.

• Organization: the ability to keep track of multiple sets of information and materials.

Time management: the ability to understand how much time one has, and to figure out how to divide it in order to meet a goal.

• Working memory: the ability to hold information in mind even while performing other tasks.

Metacognition: the ability to self-monitor and recognize when you are doing something poorly or well.

• Response inhibition: the ability to think before you speak or act.

Sustained attention: the ability to attend to a situation or task despite distraction, fatigue or boredom.

Ms. Galinksy further elucidates that executive functions effectively pull together our feelings and thinking so that we can reflect, analyze, plan, and evaluate. These executive functions are performed by the prefrontal cortex of the brain: an area devoted to higher level thinking and problem solving.

and "Seven Essential Life Skills"

Focus and self-control

This life skill allows you to focus on the “right” information in a world full of distractions. It also helps you to curb impulsive behavior and control yourself.

Tips for parents: Parents of younger children can play games that require that children pay attention to rules and follow directions such as “Red Light, Green Light” and “Simon Says.” Parents of older children should encourage their children to pursue their passions. The more motivated they are, they more they will pay attention to what they are learning.

Perspective taking

This skill involves figuring out what others think and feel and creates a foundation for children to understand other people's intentions. When children understand other people's perspectives, they are less likely to be involved in fights and conflicts.

Tips for parents: Parents of younger children can help a child understand they that he or she is “heard” by imitating the sounds infants make, repeating words toddlers make, or helping children express themselves. Parents of older children can help them understand the actions of others by discussing their motivations. They can also use fights as an opportunity to discuss the two sides of a story.


Once you are able to understand other people's perspectives, the skill of communicating involves understanding how your communication is going to be understood by others.

Tips for parents: Ask questions that go beyond the “here and now,” such as, “If you do that, what do you think will happen next?” You can also read with children in ways that use books as a platform for conversations. Ask questions about the reasons characters acted or what they think the characters are going to do on the next page.

Making connections

This skill requires putting information into different categories and understanding what is the same and what is different. The ability to make unusual connections is the heart of creativity.

Tips for parents: Parents of younger children can play matching games which will help with making connections. Parents of older children can talk about math when in the supermarket or famous artists when drawing at home.

Critical thinking

When we think critically, we think about “what causes what” to happen. Galinsky explains that is it the “ongoing search for valid and reliable knowledge to guide beliefs, decisions, and actions.”

Tips for parents: Help children think critically by allowing them to resolve issues on their own without jumping in too quickly. Help them learn the resources available to them to learn and check facts on their own.

Taking on challenges

Since the world we live in involves challenges, children who are willing to proactively take on a challenge will do better in school and in life. This skill also involves resilience in the face of adversity.

Tips for parents: Praise your child's efforts (not their successes). Children will be more likely to try new, hard things if they know that is a virtue in and of itself. Get support for yourself as a parent. If you are not able to face challenges, you won't be able to teach your child to face them.

Self-directed, engaged learning

This skill involves continued engagement in learning and knowledge.

Tips for parents: Provide first-hand learning experiences. Continue learning yourself as a model for your children. Create a community of learners with those around you.

-- z 2021-12-24 11:23 UTC

update "Think Better" cards to put a mini-poem on each?

Poem series on words in The Matrix?

Mindfulness -Attention -Meta -Here -Now -Be
Nonattachment -Acceptance -Open -Soft -May -If
Oneness -Affirmation -Love -Kind -Yes -Do

tiny thinking sermonettes on each?

Just three things:

... with initials M N O , the letters on a telephone keypad for "6", the first perfect number in mathematics. (Pure coincidence!) Mindfulness, Nonattachment, Oneness are three dimensions of awareness, distinct yet overlapping, three steps of a journey. The rest is commentary. Take what is helpful, ignore what is not. And be patient – the irrelevant now may be crucial later, and vice versa.

The Matrix

Mindfulness Attention Meta Here Now Be
Nonattachment Acceptance Open Soft May If
Oneness Affirmation Love Kind Yes Do

Patterns are practical. They help organize knowledge, they make meaning memorable – ... and they're fun! "The Matrix" has three rows, one each for Mindfulness, Nonattachment, and Oneness. Its columns carry letter patterns ...

Causal Loop Modeling ideas

look into CARDS THAT HAVE EDGE MATCHES to build Causal Loop Diagrams?! (see and and and perhaps)

simulate a LOOPY model by sliding pennies along edges? -- see for doing that to simulate Regular Expression parsing and pattern recognition!

'Systems Thinking: The Cards'
DDI cube-mnemonics (3D printed) badge lanyard toys - 'Define - Develop - Implement'
DIY make your own paper cubes to explore dimensions via "box" facets

... hmmmm, maybe HEXAGONAL brick-like grid, with HOLES? ..


"Real Endurance" site - ^z results

59 results found since 2004. 53 UltraRunnings.

  1. Distance PR Age Year PR at Event
    2 100m 27:53:08 64 2017 C&O Canal 100
    1 100k 19:27:45 65 2017 Devil Dog Ultras
    18 50m 10:04:19 62 2014 Stone Mill 50
    28 50k 06:50:12 56 2009 Seneca Creek Trail
#Distance PR Age Year PR at Event
2100m 27:53:08642017C&O Canal 100
1100k 19:27:45652017Devil Dog Ultras
1850m 10:04:19622014Stone Mill 50
2850k 06:50:12562009Seneca Creek Trail

-- z 2020-10-07 10:56 UTC

14 search results (14 Events, 1099.961 km).

2019 3 Events, 148.28 km
19.-20.10.2019 Ghost Train Rail Trail Race 30 Mile (USA) 30mi
8:05:06 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 74 M: 35 Cat M65: 1
01.06.2019 Run it with Janet 50k Race (USA) 50km
7:37:25 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 29 M: 15 Cat M65: 1
13.04.2019 Runamuck 50K (USA) 50km
7:25:32 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 74 M: 47 Cat M65: 1
2018 3 Events, 196.56 km
20.-21.10.2018 Ghost Train Rail Trail Race 60 Mile (USA) 60mi
17:15:18 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 35 M: 20 Cat M65: 1
02.06.2018 Run it with Janet 50k Race (USA) 50km
8:04:35 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 22 M: 13 Cat M65: 1
24.02.2018 Hashawha Hills 50 km Trail Run (USA) 50km
8:29:25 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 98 M: 69 Cat M65: 2
2017 6 Events, 652.335 km
02.-03.12.2017 Devil Dog Ultra 100 Km Race (USA) 100km
19:27:45 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 79 M: 51 Cat M60: 6
29.-30.09.2017 The Yeti 100 Mile Endurance Run (USA) 100mi
29:00:59 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 126 M: 72 Cat M60: 3
03.06.2017 Run it with Janet 50k Race (USA) 50km
7:16:30 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 25 M: 14 Cat M60: 1
29.-30.04.2017 C&O Canal 100 Mile (USA) 100mi
27:53:08 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 41 M: 33 Cat M60: 2
08.04.2017 Bull Run Run 50 Miler (USA) 50mi
12:38:28 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 264 M: 197 Cat M60: 12
11.03.2017 Crazy Desert Trail Race 100k (USA) 100km
17:06:58 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 27 M: 23 Cat M60: 2
2016 1 Event, 50 km
04.06.2016 Run it with Janet 50k Race (USA) 50km
7:28:00 h Zimmermann, Mark Overall: 16 M: 7 Cat M60: 2
2013 1 Event, 52.786 km
27.10.2013 Fire on the Mountain 50k Ultra Marathon (USA) 32.8mi
8:13:33 h Zimmermann, Mark *Kensington, MD Overall: 91 M: 71 Cat M60: 2


[2] and [3]

-- z 2021-01-25 13:54 UTC = "Physicists"

interview with David Roberts (Category theorist)

see also and many good things there!

-- z 2021-06-03 14:54 UTC
Alice's Adventures in Equilibrium
John P. Hussman

-- z 2021-06-16 14:25 UTC

reread "Simple Art of Murder" by Raymond Chandler? -

-- z 2021-06-17 10:52 UTC

"Tiny Love Stories" - NYT series, 100 words or less, reader-submitted - like poems, cropped images, walk/run reports ... and etc

-- z 2021-06-18 11:23 UTC

Oblique Strategies

to do: look at the qualities of solutions to the simplest system-dynamic archetypes – pairs of loops {"++", "+-", "--"} – and investigate their qualitative properties ... e.g, "++" archetype is an exponential growth race between the two loops, "+-" is ...

-- z 2021-06-22 00:05 UTC

Genuine, Gallant, Generous, Great-spirited (( re opposites of cynical, scared, selfish, small, … )) — maybe add Grateful … following the “Think Better” card eh?!

-- z 2021-07-14 11:14 UTC


Some paths lead to beautiful overviews, lush valleys, awesome mountain peaks, or peaceful forest glades. Other paths head into thickets of thorn bushes, mucky bogs, or other dead ends. The difference often isn't obvious at the start. But there are often signs, and sometimes maps that can help.

Thinking is a lot like that. Some patterns of reasoning tend toward good results that "click" – conclusions that fit together and make sense. Other modes of thought bring contradictions and muddles. The difference isn't obvious at the start.


-- z 2021-07-27 11:10 UTC

Maurine Stuart ("Subtle Sound" collection of short talks -

Charlotte Joko Beck ("Everyday Zen" collection of talks)

Stephen Batchelor ("Buddhism without Beliefs")

Shunryu Suzuki ("Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind" and "Not Always So" collections of talks)

Guy Claxton ("The Heart of Buddhism" -

Jon Kabat-Zinn (almost anything he wrote!)

-- z 2021-07-29 15:55 UTC

[4] = "You Are Not Lazy or Undisciplined. You Have Internal Resistance" -- interesting thread about mental work vs physical work, competition, exhaustion, depression, etc.

-- z 2021-08-03 10:08 UTC

page turner poem?! (turning pages for a concert musician)

-- z 2021-10-06 17:15 UTC

"venery" -- and other ambiguous words with diverse meanings!

-- z 2021-10-09 11:29 UTC and neat graphical summary

-- z 2021-10-12 00:13 UTC and This

-- z 2021-11-06 10:19 UTC

-- z 2021-12-09 22:22 UTC

model mass emotional-irrational phenomena? - like:

... things that have significant elements of the higher-order need to estimate what OTHER people think ... so there are elements like "momentum", first-order forecasts based on what-just-happened-will-continue ...

-- z 2021-12-11 11:10 UTC

"How does a whip break the sound barrier? (Slow Motion Shockwave formation) - Smarter Every Day 207" -- from link at

"To see how the bullwhip effect works, think about how a whip cracks. A jerk of the handle sends a wave down the length of the whip. Because momentum is conserved and the mass of the part of the whip as you get toward the tip approaches zero, the velocity at the tip becomes extreme, exceeding the speed of sound. (I recommend this totally cool YouTube video of some whip experiments by Smarter Every Day.)"

-- z 2021-12-16 12:43 UTC

Peter Senge's 11 "Laws of the Fifth Discipline":

1. Today's problems come from yesterday's solutions.
2. The harder you push, the harder the system pushes back.
3. Behavior grows better before it grows worse.
4. The easy way out leads back in.
5. The cure can be worse than the disease.
6. Faster is slower.
7. Cause and effect are not always closely related in time and space.
8. Small changes can produce big results -- but the areas of highest leverage are often the least obvious.
9. You can have your cake and eat it too -- but not all at once.
10. Dividing an elephant in half does not produce two small elephants.
11. There is no blame.

-- z 2021-12-19 10:54 UTC

make a MANTRA out of Less I and Less Me ...

-- z 2021-12-22 11:48 UTC

décolletage as FRAMING DEVICE (^_^)

-- z 2021-12-24 11:25 UTC

Japanese loan-words "donmai" (from "don't mind" but more of "it's ok") and "faito" from "fight" but more of "good luck")

and [5] for:

and "kokoro" for heart-mind-spirit ...

and see for a list with explanations!

ガラス (garasu)
グルメ (gurume)
ホイール (hoiiru)
スマホ (sumaho)
ファイト (faito)
セーター (seetaa)
ネック (nekku)
ドンマイ (donmai)
キャリア (kyaria)
アバウト (abauto)
シール (shiiru)
プッシュ (pusshu)
アップ (appu)
ダウン (daun)
フォロー (foroo)
スマート (sumaato)

and for "faito" maybe meaning Deadpool-like "maximum effort"? --

This “faito" comes from the English word “fight."
In English, it corresponds to “Hang in there", “Keep doing it," or “Go for it."
Used in casual conversations, obviously, it doesn’t mean that someone goes to a fight or duel somewhere.

It may include the meaning of “fight yourself" so that the person can exert more strength next time.

2022 Aspirations:

-- z 2021-12-24 21:29 UTC

somebody writing on the Internet ( about Austin history mention TV ad slogans that I recall from my childhood!!

“… The two old commercials that stand out in my mind are Oscar Snowden's (the Big O-If you didn't buy it from the big O, I know you paid too much) and Willie Kocurek (You don't need money; just a little bit a month.) …”

-- z 2021-12-28 13:05 UTC

LOOPY diagram for the forces (flatness, frictionlessness, efficiency, ...) in

"... seek out friction and thorniness, hunt for complexity and delight in unpredictability ... and improvisation and adventure and lots and lots of creative waste. ..."

-- z 2021-12-31 13:54 UTC

careTAKER -- paid to TAKE CARE of somebody, a transaction

careGIVER -- choosing to GIVE CARE, freely and voluntarily and lovingly

-- z 2022-01-03 11:11 UTC

-- z 2022-01-03 11:14 UTC

Galatians 5:22

"... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control ...

-- z 2022-01-03 12:57 UTC

from Happiness Is (2015)

Happiness is not a product of something,
but just a state of being.
It just is.
So it is always there.


Notes From the End of a Very Long Life

With the death of Ruth Willig at 98, a Times series on a set of the oldest New Yorkers — chronicled over seven years in 21 articles — offers their lessons on living with loss.

For those who make it to old old age, there remains the challenge: How do you make a full and meaningful life when you can’t do so many of the things you once did? At the end of life, what turns out to really matter, and what is just noise?

For as long as I knew Ruth, she valued time with her children above all, leveraging the anticipation of the next visit to sustain her through the gaps in between. At the end, this time together was all there was.

In a 24-hour span in December, she had visits from her four children and three of her four grandchildren. They looked through old photo albums together, remembering happy moments, with Ruth identifying faces in the pictures for her children.

On a phone call during one family visit, she told me, “I’m blessed,” as she always did about her children’s attentions. Then she added something new: “I deserve it.”

and from which the above led to, an earlier article in the series:

New York’s ‘85 and Up’: Update

Fred was a complicated man. He wanted to live to 110, but he continued to eat a diet rich in ice cream and Pringles, even as he lost two toes to diabetes. He was outgoing and loved to tell stories, but he was also protective of his privacy and rarely let people into his apartment, which had gone to seed as his health weakened. His conversation, often ribald, was equal parts God and sex. He could sing like Billy Eckstine. He wanted to get back to church, to go to Red Lobster, to hang out on the street and make conversation with the women who passed by. He was never again able to do any of these things. His favorite part of every day, he said, was waking up and thanking God for another day.

I once asked him about the happiest time of his life. It was after a long conversation about his mother and his grandmother (the true loves of his life); about earning small tips as a teenager, during the early days of World War II in Norfolk, Va., by helping servicemen find willing women; about being the first one in his family who went to college.

The happiest time of his life was “right now,” he said without hesitation. “I have health problems, but it’s been going on a long time, so it’s secondary.” he said. “But I think happiness really is what’s going on at a particular time. I used to think happiness was something that somebody brought to you. But happiness, as opposed to enjoyment, is when you are doing something and you are elated.”

-- z 2022-01-06 12:44 UTC

think about fundamental patterns made by systems of differential equations -- static, linear, exponential, oscillatory -- how to draw them and how to explain them

-- z 2022-01-08 02:30 UTC

Partner Change and Changing

best bits:

-- z 2022-01-09 18:07 UTC

draw more LOOPY cartoons!

the world is full of books and of people lecturing and of posts on social media ...

the world is NOT full of good, honest, useful summaries of important concepts and their relationships and their implications ...

maybe graphical languages can help mend that -- for situations of causality, chance, and conflict ...

-- z 2022-01-11 11:36 UTC

pause at every period

-- z 2022-01-13 11:48 UTC

Travel Light

-- z 2022-01-17 22:15 UTC

"My Power Wheelchair Makes Me a Better Mom: Because I can walk short distances, strangers judge me for using a wheelchair. But it allows me to be the parent my active toddler needs."

"... My disabilities — Ehlers-Danlos syndrome and a secondary neurological condition, dysautonomia — make sitting upright for more than a few minutes, or standing still for more than 30 seconds, impossible. ... In “Anne of Green Gables,” after Anne realizes that her options may be more limited than she had hoped, the narrator explains, “But if the path set before her feet was to be narrow, she knew that flowers of quiet happiness would bloom along it.” ..."


"... Bodies are more complex than I realized: some bodies can always walk, some bodies can sometimes walk and some bodies can never walk. If I see another person using a wheelchair, the only thing that I can know is that they need it at that moment. Maybe the chair enables them to show up for someone who needs them. ..."

-- z 2022-01-24 11:16 UTC

Wikipedia:Brian_Andreas and

-- z 2022-02-11 12:30 UTC

notes from "Should I Stay or Should I Go?" (2011) by Lundy Bancroft and Judith Patrissi

Relationship Repair

Life and Worth


Immaturity ... doesn't do their share ... falls apart instead of taking on responsibilities ... needs to be the center of attention ... can't manage the "basics of adult life" ... talks on and on about themself, and can't listen very well to others ... has little insight into themself ... says that other people's feelings are wrong ... "has curiously strong opinions on subjects that they actually knows very little about (and that sometimes are things that you, on the other hand, do know something about)" ... "stays upset for an inordinately long time" if they have to make a sacrifice .. is "difficult to get moving; spends a lot of time sitting around doing nothing, and complains about having to make any effort" ... messes things up for themself (as opposed to hurting others) ...

"Living with an adult who refuses to grow up is exhausting."

... and signs of and differences among and appropriate responses to the four categories: immaturity, addiction, mental health, abusiveness ...

-- z 2022-03-02 03:04 UTC


Addiction -- to alcohol, other drugs, pornography, gambling ...


Mental health problems -- post-traumatic, personality disorders, depression ...

-- Anonymous 2022-03-03 01:41 UTC

draw LOOPY cartoons for Confirmation Bias, and for Premature-Need-for-Closure-Urge-to-Converge, and for Anchoring, and for other cognitive fallacies ...

-- z 2022-03-04 11:29 UTC


One of the cruxes of this book, then, is the following tension:

On the one hand, people who aren’t willing to stick with a relationship through some hard times end up with no lasting relationships, and they miss some chances to be with a person who had potential.

On the other hand, many women end up feeling that they poured precious years of their lives into struggling to get a man to change, only to have to accept eventually that he simply wasn’t going to.

We want to see you avoid both of these pitfalls and find a course down the middle of these two risks.

-- z 2022-03-06 11:31 UTC

CHAPTER 14: the Pros and Cons of giving a partner more time

"Stay and Move Forward" includes:

the chapter (and section) concludes:

Expanding your own horizons also helps you to heal. As we will examine in detail in Chapter 21, recovering from the harm done by a destructive partner involves a combination of internal and external work, an interplay between emotional healing and concrete action. By leaping forward with your development, you feed the “action” side of the equation in a way that can make a large contribution to easing the pain of what you have endured. (And we’ll be teaching some techniques for the internal healing side, to help keep the recovery process in balance, which we find brings the fastest path to well-being.)

And even though your partner may resent your growth and perceive it as a threat, the reality is that he stands to benefit, too. By holding you back, he also holds himself back. When you start to fly, he can catch the stream behind you—if he chooses to.

You are going to shine. Full speed ahead.

-- z 2022-03-09 03:01 UTC

bits from Lundy Bancroft Why Does He Do That?


-- z 2022-03-16 01:14 UTC

Chapter 1:

We will explore answers to these questions on three levels. The first level is the abuser’s thinking—his attitudes and beliefs—in daily interactions. The second is his learning process, through which his thinking began to develop early in his life. And the third involves the rewards he reaps from controlling his partner, which encourage him to use abusive behavior over and over again. As we clear away the abusive man’s smoke screen with these understandings, you will find that abusiveness turns out to be far less mysterious than it appears at first.

Inside the abuser’s mind, there is a world of beliefs, perceptions, and responses that fits together in a surprisingly logical way. His behavior does make sense. Underneath the facade of irrationality and explosiveness, there is a human being with a comprehensible—and solvable—problem. But he doesn’t want you to figure him out.

The abuser creates confusion because he has to. He can’t control and intimidate you, he can’t recruit people around him to take his side, he can’t keep escaping the consequences of his actions, unless he can throw everyone off the track. When the world catches on to the abuser, his power begins to melt away. So we are going to travel behind the abuser’s mask to the heart of his problem. This journey is critical to the health and healing of abused women and their children, for once you grasp how your partner’s mind works, you can begin reclaiming control of your own life. Unmasking the abuser also does him a favor, because he will not confront—and overcome—his highly destructive problem as long as he can remain hidden.

The better we understand abusers, the more we can create homes and relationships that are havens of love and safety, as they should be. Peace really does begin at home.

-- z 2022-03-16 02:07 UTC

from "The Mathematics of Doodling" by Ravi Vakil [7]:

Let me tell you about a doodle I did when I was very small, and the mathematics that flows inevitably from it. It looks like play, but in my mind this is what mathematics is really about: finding patterns in nature, explaining them, and extending them. Mathematics is about asking the right questions, and that's what we will do here, finding interesting questions, and then finding questions behind the questions. These ideas will lead to rather deep mathematics, in lots of fields. I am not an expert in these fields, and you needn't be an expert in a part of mathematics to let your curiosity pull you in. On a related note: in this article, I will ask a lot of questions, and give relatively few answers. And there are many questions that you will think should be asked, that I don't–I encourage you to follow up on them, because they may lead you somewhere interesting and unexpected. This article is intended for readers with widely different mathematical backgrounds, so if you come across a notion you have seen, or one you find trivial, please keep reading.

see [8]

-- z 2022-03-16 10:04 UTC

"How to Maintain Friendships" - Anna Goldfarb, Jan. 18, 2018

-- z 2022-03-20 18:20 UTC

Metacognitive Experiences

Lundy Why Does He Do That? Chap 5, suggests that "... the two most important concepts regarding abusive men ..." are:

-- z 2022-03-23 00:42 UTC

and later in chapter 5:



The good news is that remorse is often genuine; the bad news is that it rarely helps. To make sense out of this contradiction, we need to look first at a crucial aspect of what is going on inside an abuser: Abusers have numerous contradictory attitudes and beliefs operating simultaneously in their minds.

-- z 2022-03-23 01:27 UTC and

One time, years ago, he showed me a poem called “Confessions of a Steeplejack,” which later appeared in his collection, Light for the Orphans. Far down in the poem was this magical line: “the men who built old churches all have died.” I got goose bumps when he read that line aloud. I told him he had to make that line the opening of the poem. He argued with me, of course—that was Wil’s nature. He was stubborn, ornery, hard-headed to a fault. He claimed I didn’t understand what he was trying to do in the poem. I told him he was full of himself, that a reader encountering that line first would hear more deeply the heart of the poem. The change would require a lot of revision, a lot of hard work—the entire poem would have to be rebuilt from the ground up. “Maybe you’re not up for it,” I teased him. Then I told him that I’d beat the living crap out of him if he didn’t take my advice. He was taller, had a longer reach, but I warned him that I was scrappy. We both laughed. Sometime later, he rewrote the poem, starting with that magical line. It’s one of the gems in that collection, but then all of them are gems. Or “keepers,” as Wil would say.

Earlier this year, before we knew of Wil’s diagnosis, I sent him an email of encouragement about our writing. I often joked about how we had to help each other rebuild our shattered egos. Though we both have finished books that are yet unpublished, and though lack of recognition seems to be our mutual fate, I wanted to hold up between us an idea I had never really been able to form completely:

God’s really our only reader, the only one that matters anyway. I just think of writing as one of the ways I can follow what Phillipians 4:8 says: “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

All the rest of it—the recognition, my spot on the stage, the next book publication—would be nice, but in the end, thinking on “these things” really is an astounding source of joy. It may have to be enough. Well, it is enough.

Wil wrote back with an enthusiastic “Amen!” I think he was finding that joy to be deeper and deeper the older he got. Selfishly, I wish he could have written forty more years’ worth of poems. Perhaps he would have moved from the Proverbs and Lamentations his poems often were to something like his own brand of Psalms. I don’t want to be selfish, though. I want to stand in awe of the words he wrote. Like him, once upon a time, they never existed. Now they do, inexplicably present in a fullness that didn’t exist before.

-- z 2022-04-02 12:44 UTC

notes on the book Resilient: How to Grow an Unshakable Core of Calm, Strength, and Happiness by Rick Hanson and Forrest Hanson ...


three basic human needs: Safety, Satisfaction, and Connection
four major ways to meet those needs: "... by recognizing what’s true, resourcing ourselves, regulating thoughts, feelings, and actions, and relating skillfully to others and the wider world ..."

that makes a "matrix of twelve primary inner strengths":

Safety Compassion Grit Calm Courage
Satisfaction Mindfulness Gratitude Motivation Aspiration
Connection Learning Confidence Intimacy Generosity

-- z 2022-04-29 01:08 UTC

How Are Your Camels

from the New Yorker -- "The Grothendieck Mystery" [9]

Mazur suggests that it’s possible to glimpse the essence of Grothendieck’s approach to mathematics by looking at two concepts—categories and functors. A category can be thought of almost as a grammar: take triangles, perhaps, and understand them in terms of their relationship to all other triangles. The category consists of objects, and relationships between objects. The objects are nouns and the relationships are verbs, and the category is all the ways in which they can interact. Grothendieck’s discoveries opened up mathematics in a way that was analogous to how Wittgenstein (and Saussure) changed our views of language.

A functor is a kind of translation machine that lets you go from one category to another, while bringing along all the relevant tools. This is more astonishing than it sounds. Imagine if math could be translated into poetry, and somehow it made sense to take the square root of a stanza.

The mathematician Angela Gibney describes Grothendieck’s vantage point in a way that I find particularly approachable: if you want to know about people, you don’t just look at them individually—you look at them at a family reunion. Ravi Vakil, a mathematician at Stanford, said, “He also named things, and there’s a lot of power in naming.” In the forbiddingly complex world of math, sometimes something as simple as new language leads you to discoveries. Vakil said, “It’s like when Newton defined weight and mass. They had not been distinguished before. And suddenly you could understand what was previously muddled.”

-- z 2022-05-12 23:48 UTC

[10] "The Rich Are Not Who We Think They Are. And Happiness Is Not What We Think It Is, Either." by Seth Stephens-Davidowitz leads to [11] "Are You Happy While You Work?" by Alex Bryson and George MacKerron with Abstract:

Using a new data source permitting individuals to record their wellbeing via a smartphone, we explore within-person variance in individuals' wellbeing measured momentarily at random points in time. We find paid work is ranked lower than any of the other 39 activities individuals can report engaging in, with the exception of being sick in bed. Precisely how unhappy one is while working varies significantly with where you work; whether you are combining work with other activities; whether you are alone or with others; and the time of day or night you are working.

and with fun table on pages 20-21:
Table 3. Happiness in Different Activities (fixed effects regression model)
Happy (0 – 100)
Activities (in rank order) coeff t
Intimacy, making love 14.20 (44.4)
Theatre, dance, concert 9.29 (29.6)
Exhibition, museum, library 8.77 (25.0)
Sports, running, exercise 8.12 (45.5)
Gardening, allotment 7.83 (22.8)
Singing, performing 6.95 (17.5)
Talking, chatting, socialising 6.38 (75.2)
Birdwatching, nature watching 6.28 (11.4)
Walking, hiking 6.18 (37.0)
Hunting, fishing 5.82 (3.98)
Drinking alcohol 5.73 (54.0)
Hobbies, arts, crafts 5.53 (22.5)
Meditating, religious activities 4.95 (11.2)
Match, sporting event 4.39 (15.2)
Childcare, playing with children 4.10 (19.4)
Pet care, playing with pets 3.63 (17.1)
Listening to music 3.56 (27.6)
Other games, puzzles 3.07 (11.1)
Shopping, errands 2.74 (25.1)
Gambling, betting 2.62 (2.82)
Watching TV, film 2.55 (36.3)
Computer games, iPhone games 2.39 (18.4)
Eating, snacking 2.38 (37.1)
Cooking, preparing food 2.14 (22.0)
Drinking tea/coffee 1.83 (18.4)
Reading 1.47 (13.3)
Listening to speech/podcast 1.41 (9.62)
Washing, dressing, grooming 1.18 (11.5)
Sleeping, resting, relaxing 1.08 (11.4)
Smoking 0.69 (3.16)
Browsing the Internet 0.59 (6.13)
Texting, email, social media 0.56 (5.64)
Housework, chores, DIY -0.65 (-6.59)
Travelling, commuting -1.47 (-16.2)
In a meeting, seminar, class -1.50 (-9.01)
Admin, finances, organising -2.45 (-14.2)
Waiting, queueing -3.51 (-22.7)
Care or help for adults -4.30 (-7.75)
Working, studying -5.43 (-44.0)
Sick in bed -20.4 (-67.9)

Something else (version < 1.0.2) -1.00 (-5.43)
Something else (version >= 1.0.2) -2.31 (-13.6)

Person fixed effects Yes
Constant 65.6 (978)

Observations 1,321,279
Number of groups 20,946

-- z 2022-05-16 10:23 UTC

comments for above table:

In Table 3 we see how working compares to the correlations with other activities. The most pleasurable experience for individuals is love-making and intimacy, which raises individuals’ happiness by roughly 14% (relative to not doing this activity). This is followed by leisure activities such as going to the theatre, going to a museum and playing sport. Paid work comes very close to the bottom of the happiness ranking. It is the second worst activity for happiness after being sick in bed, although being sick in bed has a much larger effect, reducing happiness scores by just over 20%.

-- z 2022-05-16 10:25 UTC

"peer-reviewed version" 2016 [12] - looks the same

-- z 2022-05-16 10:29 UTC

-- Anonymous 2022-05-24 15:40 UTC

Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics

Marvin Minsky Society of Mind full text ... re-read!

-- z 2022-06-06 10:40 UTC

Charles Blow Career Advice
Tish Harrison Warren
"11 Small Ways You Can Help Mend the World"
June 12, 2022

  1. Have more in-person conversations.
  2. Get outside.
  3. Eschew mobs – online and in real life.
  4. Read books.
  5. Give money away.
  6. Invest in institutions more than personal brands.
  7. Invest in children.
  8. Observe the Sabbath.
  9. Make a steel man of others' arguments.
  10. Practice patience.
  11. Pray.

-- z 2022-06-13 10:28 UTC

runners can always train a little harder, race a little faster, push through pain a little farther -- at the cost of increasing the odds of a game-changing injury, exhaustion, and later failure ...

likewise, one can always work a little harder ...

-- z 2022-06-13 11:03 UTC

Memory Improvement

speculate that the category theoretic approach – considering verbs not nouns – arrows not nodes – relationships not entities – may prove useful as one gets older – and perhaps it could be related to the Zen of considering not self but rather the constellation of all selves (like Indra's Net) ...

-- z 2022-07-14 19:58 UTC

-- z 2022-07-19 01:11 UTC