Jon is not a hermit

by Jon Sullivan - 2023-06-05 - Status

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Let's try again, for the 23rd time, to write a blog post.

Allergy update - This continues to catch me off guard with how debilitating it is. My life here for the last two months has been constant low-grade exhaustion and brain fog. It doesn't keep me too wiped out to do things. But it does make it very easy to just be lazy, as working up the energy to get out the door now takes real effort. I do get out. There have been photo adventures. There have been concerts. There have been new foodie excursions. But I'm really tired and low energy. I did find a good solution but it involves running two air purifiers 24/7 and never letting outside air in. This has gotten me back to 80%, but that missing 20% is largely not being able to sleep. It doesn't matter. Too much to do.

The next month will have more stuff packed into it than I've attempted in a long time. Which is sort of the point in moving here. So none of it will be put off. There's three "gathering" events - Party weekend with James and Marilee, the regular Solstice gathering at Sharon's, and a big tribe get together at Drew's. Several concerts. Oregon Country fair. Sharon's Oregon road trip. Some board game nights. We're going to be putting about 300 miles on the car, which is now set up for car camping. Lots of cooking prep. I also need to get fishing and camping. How I'll get all this done during allergy season is the main question.

But to be sure..... "running two air purifiers 24/7 and never letting outside air in" isn't going to be an option that is open to me during this month. As if it ever was. The hobbit hole is a constant temptation of comfort and ease. But I've lived that life. Not going back to it. My bags are packed and ready to roll.

Fish & chips update - I had this crazy idea of making an "Oregon's best fish & chips" list. Sort of like the San Diego best tacos thing I did years ago. Tacos are basic, fish & chips is basic. And with so many places here getting fish fresh off the boat, this would be the place to find some damn good F&Cs. There is a problem however. In San Diego great taco shops are everywhere, and the food is dirt cheap. But even in magical Oregon, places actually making an honest effort are sort of hard to find, and it's all expensive (which is fine, I'll pay for quality). There are lots of upmarket seafood restaurants, and most places will have it on the menu. But too often it's a foodie sort of place that needs to redefine fish & chips. Or it's just a poor vegetarian option made with pre-battered frozen shite. Or it's just not proper at all, with panko breading and McDonald's style french fries. Even worse, the best I've found is in Portland rather than the coast. I guess I'm a snob since I prefer my F&Cs coming from little crab shacks off the freeway, within smelling distance of the ocean. Research continues. For anyone wondering, my definition of great proper F&Cs is what you'd get in a good pub in London or Ireland. With the non Maris Piper potatoes we have in the US, that's tough to find honestly. Or..... Just watch this recipe. That would be a 9.5/10 for me.

Stoicism update - I'm not as all in as I was a year ago. I'd say I've cherry picked what works for me and moved on. So I continue to not waste energy over things outside my control. I think about the 4 virtues now and then. I embrace the idea that we, as humans, are all one with the universe across all space and time. I still choose to reject the notion that we are naturally divided into winners and losers who must fight for food and shelter and sex. I choose to believe that each of us are the best we can be when we live in harmony. So...... maybe more atheist Jesus and less Epictetus. Love your neighbor as yourself, forgive others who have wronged you, don't be hypocritical, don't judge others, it's not the rich and powerful - but the weak and poor - who are allowed to have grace.

I like the idea of Atheist Jesus. "Seriously. What did I say? Stop clinging to the Old Testament. That God literally despised and condemned you. That's over. Just be a genuine good person. I died in pain so you didn't have to be a hateful, bigoted asshole. You've had a new covenant now for 2000 years. Fucking love your neighbor already. Don't make me come down there again."

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