March 4th, 2003


Images of me.

I have no idea why, but a number of my online friends have asked for pictures of me lately. I guess it has something to do with my telling them about the beard that has made its way onto my face. This seems to be born out by the explanation that they couldn't picture me with facefuzz, although how many of them have seen pictures of me in the last two years is anybody's guess.

Well, now their imaginations can rest easy, because I've got two photographs for them to look at.

I'll give warning that these are not the most flattering pictures -- mostly because I was hamming it up for captain18 when he was pointing the camera at me. And let's face it, a Network Operations Center is not exactly one of the most photogenic places known to man. Yes, that is a Psi-Corps pin. Yes, to the left of it is the Cthulhu Coffee logo on my polo.

Cap has already posted one of the pictures, but I've got both of them here so you can get the general idea.

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It's 2110..

... I've been sitting in my bedroom these last 4 hours, just sort of keeping to myself. For the most part I have been passing the time just chatting away on FurryMUCK and #wt with a few friends from my various social circles. I know a lot of good people, and it's sort of disappointing that so many of them are part of these "virtual" circles, because I know I'd be relaxed around them and able to enjoy their companionship and I'd like to meet them face-to-face sometime. With regards to the idle chatter with friends, it's been an interesting evening in that regard: on one hand I've been getting various amounts of feedback about the pictures I posted. The general consensus is that "evil Feren" looks a lot like the character of Private Pyle portrayed by Vince D'Onofrio in the movie Full Metal Jacket. I'm not sure if I should be flattered by this comparison or taken aback by the number of people who said I look creepy and disturbing. Maybe I should take a little from column A and a little from column B.

The other interesting item for the evening involves Liin, whom I've mentioned only once before in this journal (She is the panthress next to me in the picture I posted last Friday). She was one of the people asking for pictures of me since I'd mentioned the beard to her, so when she logged on to Furry tonight I figured I'd lob the URL over her way. I also invited her to dig into my LJ. I figured that since it gives a little insight into my thoughts and daily life it would be a way for her to, I dunno, catch up on my life or something. That sounds horribly egotistical, doesn't it? Bah, I need to take myself down a notch or two or the next thing you'll know I will be posting here about how people suck and I have the cure for all these cell-phone using SUV-driving twinks... oh, shit. Maybe it's too late.

I kid, of course.

Anyway... Liin was perusing my LJ she and I were chatting online. She's a remarkably sweet gal and I'm very lucky to know her. Maybe someday I'll be lucky enough to receive the honor of meeting her in person and treating her to a dinner at a nice restaurant, although I have no idea what she likes to eat. If I might indulge myself a little, I mentioned that a number of my friends are "virtual" in the sense of I know them online and haven't had the pleasure of actually shaking their hand. She's a fine example of that... she lives on an entirely different continent, heck, she lives in an entirely different hemisphere. But she's still a trusted friend who I miss greatly when she's not around. She's creative, pleasant, well-spoken and very intelligent. She's also had an upbringing that leaves me slightly envious... she's gotten to travel to a number of different places in her country as well as abroad. I've only really ever gone as far as Canada. When I hear about the places she's been to and the things she's done I'm sort of overwhelmed and a little intimidated. On the down side it does remind me of just how limited a scope I've got despite the efforts of my parents (who were by no means substandard in their efforts to raise me and educate me beyond the trifling "lessons" our public school district tried to instill in me). I think about how Liin has gotten all this exposure to other places and cultures, how Deinha has done the same thing, and I feel very small by comparison. I question the direction I'm plotting for my life, and wonder if the idea of settling down and thus rooting myself to one place is really what I want to do. There are a lot of questions that get raised in moments of doubt like this, but unsurprisingly there are very few answers.

The weird part is Liin almost feels compelled to apologize for the life experiences she's had. I can't begin to wrap my head around that! I've always been of the opinion that you should never apologize for who and what you are as a person. Why feel bad for being more worldly than somebody else? It doesn't make her elitest by any means that she was a bit more privledged than others around her, it's just a part of how she grew up. I especially give a lot of credit to her parents for making sure their children got this sort of education, for making certain that they'd know there is more to the world around them than the corner grocery store and the town a few miles away via highway. To me this goes a long way towards explaining why she's the person she is and how come I enjoy sharing her company so much, even if it is only letters on a screen. We can spend hours talking and it feels like only a few minutes. Tonight is a fine example of that, really. Our topics ranged from travel (as I'm sure you guessed based on this entry) to awareness of the world around us, privacy and how some people seek it more than others (which lead to us touching on exhibitionism and some of our experiences with it) and a lot of other things. We usually end up talking a lot because I'm not much of one for roleplaying these days, but she doesn't seem to mind too much. She never seems to hesitate to say something kind to me, and that always catches me by surprise. I can only hope that I am doing sufficiently well in trying to return the favor.

Random observation of the night: Natalie Merchant singing Neil Young's "After The Gold Rush" is one of the most tender, lovingly-rendered covers I've heard in a long, long time.

Thinking about what a friend had said, I was hoping it was a lie
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