So this one has really nothing to do with Astronomy or camping, but it has a lot to do with my current mental funk.
So Friday I blew off the Paxon High School Band Boosters to go to the Meeting with the North East Florida Astronomical Society. My daughter was sick and couldn’t go to the game so I took advantage of that opening in my schedule to go hang out with my fellows.
It was an outstanding meeting. The major topic of discussion was the misconceptions surrounding astronomy. In the end the question was asked, “Why are these misconceptions there?” My answer was because most people just are no into astronomy. This goes back to the entire outreach issue. How can anyone expect to know the answer when they don’t even know the question to ask?
Saturday I re-plumbed a house. I was helping someone out and it was quite the learning experience but I was so smoked from laying pipe in the attic on a traditionally hot Florida fall day that I blew of the public observing session at Hannah Park. Some say I was justified at this but I woke up after sleeping for about 12 hours feeling like a dismal failure.
So I blew off band for astronomy. I blew off astronomy for human weakness. Last week I totally blew a good time at the beach with my Steampunk crew because I was pissed more people didn’t show up.
I am not liking this trend. Dammit… I should have said screw it and we should have had the Victorian Beach party even though there were only two of us there. I should have honored my commitment to the marching band. I should have gone to the park and shared with the public what little I know about the heavens above.
I think this shows just how petulant and self-absorbed I am. These are traits I loathe in other people, but here I am... exhibiting the same behavior.
I have been told I am dull and distant. I understand that now.
Now, to remind myself that not all in the world has fallen to my own waste, there have been good things going on too.
My daughter and I set up the PS2 in my room, and I have been playing copious amounts of Star Wars: Battlegrounds. I joke about how I think Star Wars is a documentary and being a 46 year-old parachute rigger in North Florida is my LARP character. After playing SW:B the last couple days I have really started to immerse myself into it! I wish there was a sightseer mode where I could just walk around the joint and not worry about getting killed. I should write the powers that be to come up with Star Wars: Tourist.
In the end his reminds me of someone else I have been blowing off. The 501st Imperial Legion. It is an imperative that I reconnect and aid in their good works. Especially since I blew off a gig with them a couple months ago.
I have a Big Book of Geek. It is pretty much a legal sized journal I have been keeping track of all of the various projects I have going on. It also gets me out of my head and reminds me of what a full life I really do have, and being grateful for that. When reading it doesn’t pull my head out of my ass I can use it to beat my skull in.
The other day when I was on my ritualistic 30 mile bike ride I wished I had my camera. Even though it is a road bike and I am supposed to be riding my ass off I do a lot of sightseeing. I took a turn at the Baldwin Trail Depot Park and actually rode into the Town of Baldwin and found the High School where my daughter was playing last week!
But nature also unfurled her wonders to me and allowed me a passing opportunity to see her wildlife. I saw wild turkeys, squirrels, snakes, raccoons, and most majestic of them all a red fox. The fox was beautiful! I have never seen a fox up close but there she was!
But there are a couple of things I learned from this. One, Bees will sting a moving target. Two, if you can not avoid running over a snake, aim for the head. You ride over its tail and it is going to rear up on you. The latter is theoretical as the last time I almost hit one I wrecked the bike dodging it. The former… oh that truly sucked.
I like sports. I don’t understand the ins and outs of football, basketball, baseball or hockey, but I do enjoy watching them. Truth be told I enjoyed watching the Tour de France, the World Swimming Championships, the World Track and Field Championships, Women’s Pro Beach Volleyball, and Formula One Racing more.
Still. The other day we were all at Dicks Wings and the final quarters of three different NFL games were on and my daughter and her mother sat there talking about the plays. I grew up a Browns fan, and even though I had long since moved from Ohio, I was crushed when the Browns moved their franchise to Baltimore. I am so eternally glad the Cleveland fought and won the right to keep the Browns name in Cleveland.
So naturally they were busting on Cleveland, and I am in the position to defend them when the score of that game came on… they 34-3…. They lost Baltimore. Here I am anthropologically fascinated by the experience of American tribalism. Most of the patrons are wearing their jerseys of their team. To say they chose their tribe would be a disservice to their loyalty. No, they chose not to leave their tribe, even though they sit in the middle of another’s territory.
This caused me to reflect on where my loyalties and my tribe are. In the end, I am a Cleveland Brown. I am a Cleveland Indian. I am a Cavalier. These are my tribes. For better or for worst they my kin.
I got the new Campmor catalog in the mail yesterday! I totally drooled over it and have a budding wish list going. DROOL!!!! This Saturday is a Full Moon hike down by Camp Blanding. I had tentatively signed up to go on it, but that day is also National Astronomy Day, and NEFAS is hosting a wonderful fair at the Florida State College Kent Campus.
So here I am trying to decide if I should go on a hike with a group I am not even a paid member of based on a provisional RSVP, or volunteer at the astronomy gig where they have already put the call out for help.
We all know that I am going to do the NEFAS event.
It’s not like I am blowing off the hike right? Or maybe! Just maybe... I can do both.
Oh boy… this is going to be a learning experience.