Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Pierwalker Log: May 28, 2019

Writing start: 10:03 A.M.
Finish: 2:17 P.M.
Total new words (est.): 900
Edited (est.): 4000

1. Failure: Off

2. Book Three Melody: Off till 6/3

3. Angel: Book Three: 600 new words
Notes: Searching for an ending to this chapter.

4. Random Chance Book Two: Off till 6/10

5. Port Story: Read-through of chapter two

6. Hidden Bookmarks: Off

7. Rumpel: 300 new words
Notes: Slow-going. I want to get the details right the first go here.

8. Zelena (Secondary Edit One): First secondary edit of part five

Special Projects: None today

Extra notes: A nice Memorial Day yesterday. It was gray and cool all day, which completely dampened the drunkenness, the loutishness, the parties, the noise, the smoke, and the ... well, the suburbanness of it all.

All it took was a gray, cool day. Not even drizzle. Just gray. Just cool. Temperatures in the high 50s or low 60s. Very comfortable.

Today, bright and sunny, and out come the people and their noisemakers--their leaf blowers; their mowers; their hedge trimmers; and, yes, their booze and parties. The temperature is almost the exact same as yesterday. Nothing is different save for the sun.

I wonder if people ever realize just how completely unconscious they are. With rare exceptions, I don't think they do. I've called them "Brownian motion machines" in the past, and I stick with that label. Another good one: billiard balls. Pinballs. Mindless electrons in a herd soup. They are at the very beck and call of completely minor things like sunlight.

When I worked in a gas station, which I did for eleven years back in the 80s and early 90s, I came up with a term to describe something I could never get a handle on: "monkey see, monkey do." It's the phenomenon whereby the station will be quiet and empty for a long period, followed by a sudden flurry of activity as customers come in. No business: and then lots of business. Only infrequently is the business steady.

Rinse and repeat.

Monkey see, monkey do.

But ... why?

After many years thinking of it, I've concluded that people are so herdified, they are so unconscious, that herd movements fairly close to their location actually sways them on an unconscious level. Oh, some of my fellow sheep are getting gas. I think I will too.

Why do some things "go viral" and others don't? No one really knows; but I'm betting monkey see, monkey do has a lot to do with it.

Of course, this phenomenon extends far beyond gas stations and the Internet. I'm sure you can think of some examples.

One of the great challenges of my life has been de-herdifying myself from herdmanity. I strive to be conscious. Not the white-lighty "consciousness" espoused by the Brownian motion machines of the self-help positivity industry, but the real deal, the kind that requires letting go of the platitudes and the "ten easy steps to enlightenment" bullshit; the kind that takes real work and a difficult lifetime to achieve, if it's achieved at all.

I'm off now to run errands, including getting gas.

Monkey see, monkey do?

We'll see.