Total Orderings

26 June 2002

Scott (the one who doesn't go with Michelle) and I have been talking about how he worries about disturbing the neighbors. I never worry about disturbing the neighbors. Why? Because the neighbors never worry about disturbing me. We are the good neighbors, us and Omyra and her family. Last night, there was a teenaged girl screaming out her life story and literally shrieking with laughter, starting maybe half an hour after I started settling in to sleep. So I was in that stage of tired where I couldn't get up, throw on a pair of shorts, and go outside to ask her to quiet down, or even shout "Shut up!" out the window. (I know, Mom, I know, we don't tell people to shut up. But we don't shriek under other people's windows late at night, either.) She and her friends eventually moved around the building, and I could hear them as they walked past each of our windows, even with a bedroom door between us and most of said windows. I could hear when she had reached the other side of my building, the length of the entire bedroom, kitchen, and dining room away.

Ahh, apartment dwelling.

On the up side, it's warmed up here, pretty much to shorts/short skirt weather. Also, I have plumicots, hurrah.

And the Weekly World News had this fabulous cover: "Robot Priests: Pope's Secret Plan to Stop Sex Scandals By Using Mechanical Holy Men." The drawing of the robopadre was even more fabulous than the headline, if that is possible.

Sometimes this is just a good world to live in.

And the traffic report on the radio was brought to us by the INS! The Immigration and Naturalization Service paid for our traffic report. That amused me muchly. It would have amused me more if we lived near a border, but still.

You hear a lot about prioritizing and focusing on the important stuff. Sometimes I think it's good to focus on the unimportant stuff. Strawberries, for example. In the historical scheme of things, it is much more important what happens in the politics of the Middle East today than whether I have strawberries for lunch. But I have control over whether I have strawberries, and they'll make me happy. So I really think it's a better use of my time to clean the strawberries right now.

I think what bothers me about commands to prioritize is that they imply a total ordering, and I'm not very much into total orderings. I like partial orderings. They make much more sense to me, and I think my life will be much better if I use them, if it is sometimes important to clean strawberries and sometimes important to read up on world politics. I get myself in trouble with total orderings, because then I don't get around to the "eat and sleep" stuff unless it's at the level of "deeply necessary bodily maintenance!!!" and jumps to where it's ahead of other things in the total ordering.

Pssst, hey. My birthday is a month from today. In case you're the sort of person who sometimes forgets to send cards or e-mails or what have you. I'm reminding you early and often so that you have no excuse. I Like Birthdays.

Well, working on the book has felt normal, comfortable, doable, in the last few days. That's a good feeling. It comes together a piece at a time, and I'm constantly making notes for things to put in other scenes, related to things I've just written, symmetry issues, continuity issues, social questions, notes notes notes. It occurs to me that I've had the Not The Moose Book percolating before writing it for less time than any other book, and it's my biggest one so far. That may explain why I'm still overawed by it. Or it may just be the nature of the Moose.

Back to Morphism.

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