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The Bloated Corpse of Seattle

Ask any Seattle native if they’ve noticed these things, and I guarantee you the answer will be yes.

I still remember the days when the Seattle skyline only had the Space Needle towering above it. Now it’s barely visible from anywhere. The explosion of tech companies here led to mass construction of downtown high-rises and skyscrapers. People moved in from all over the world to get a piece of the pie, and Seattle suffered for it. Now it barely resembles what I remember it to be.

Corporate growth has expanded to the neighboring cities as well: obviously, Bellevue expands as Microsoft and other tech mega-corps grow. Renton, Lynnwood, Kirkland, Everett, and even Kent feel the effects of this bloat.

With this explosive growth comes rising costs of living, and consequently, the ejection of citizens who live on normal wages. Those with enough margin are pushed out of the city into the suburbs. The less fortunate ones end up on the streets. The old Seattle — the lively, calm, clean one — is no more.

Instead what we have is a massive change in culture. The Seattle freeze is dying out, there’s litter in the streets like never before, and drivers are more aggressive than they used to be. But more importantly, Seattle looks less White and more Asian.

And I’m really conflicted on that point. For one, I’m excited that I get to see more people who look, sound, and smell like me. But on the other, I’m saddened and frustrated by the fact that these new residents won’t have to learn to navigate living as a super minority. It’s selfish, I know. It’s messed up, I know. But it’s something I lived through, and something that can’t be removed from my memories.

Anyway, there have been two images I like to use to metaphorize (yes, it’s a word, I just checked) the growth of Seattle. They’re quite morbid, so be warned.

One is that of the pregnant woman, complete with stretch marks, whose baby has grown so big and so quickly that the mother has died. The baby continues to grow, however, consuming the flesh of the body surrounding it, and with no sign of release.

The second is similar, except it’s a cadaver with all its holes plugged up and nowhere for the inside gas to go. It’s ready to burst at any second, but there’s no telling when.

My last thought on this is that I’ve personally met a ridiculous number of people who have moved here in the past two years. It might sound like I’m blaming you for these changes. I’m not. I’m not blaming anyone, really. I’m not blaming capitalism, either. Rather, I see this as a stepping stone in the imminent and inevitable end of society as we know it.

On that note, have a good day/night/whatever! Tune in next month when I discuss my thoughts on why that is. I’ve been promising it for a while. I should probably get it out there before it actually happens.

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=>

I’m at a crossroads in my life, one that is not uncommon for most people to reach. I notice that many people have talked about their experiences before here and after here, and sometimes the process of getting through here, but not about how they felt while here. Or about any crossroads, really.

Three major changes are (or might be) happening in my life, and for the sake of brevity and some privacy, I won’t be sharing them here.

It also feels strange now, wishing I could have insight not only on peoples’ insight, but their feelings during these transitions. I’ve never been a feelings type of person. I was always one of those robotic emotionless types. But maybe that’s why it makes sense: I don’t know how to react emotionally so I want to see what other people do.

The most important takeaway from this period is that I’m moving out of stagnation and into new, exciting, and scary things. I don’t like change and I never have, but I wasn’t happy with the way things were before. It was a combination of laziness, insecurity, and stubbornness that kept me there for so long.

Anyway, if any of these come to fruition, I’ll write about them here. But for now, the benefit of obscuring details outweighs the difficulty of writing about them with ambiguity.

See y’all on the flip side.

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End Year 1

There was something profoundly sad about Christmas this year, and I can’t quite put my finger on it.

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that there are as many COVID cases this year as there were this time last year, but the difference is that business are open, parties are raging, and family gatherings are more accepted. The world moves on. Carolers are back on the streets, Santa’s taking pictures again. Social media is ablaze with holiday festivities, and the people who are forced to quarantine are feeling more lonely than they would have last year.

Maybe it’s sad because the numbers this year are close to the same numbers last year, despite the fact that there are effective vaccines that are being administered for free in the United States. People are getting careless about masking and handwashing.

With each passing day, it creeps closer and closer to my circle. I now know people who have gotten it and others who have passed away from it. I’m a pessimist. I’m counting down the days until I get it, and hopefully I won’t pass it onto my elderly relatives. Knock on wood.

Every year during the holidays I think about the homeless. We get to spend our time with family and friends, and all they have are each other. I can’t empathize with how they must feel, watching society’s celebration while being cast aside, unwanted. We don’t really even see them this time of year. I think some part of them knows people don’t want to see them, and the situation with COVID makes things even worse.

Although maybe it’s sad because we believe in an omnipresent, omniscient, omnipotent God who seems to be letting all of this happen. He’s got a plan, I guess. Maybe our time is up, and this is where the end begins.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all, a good night.

P.S. I thought I already made a post on my prediction of the imminent end of civilization, but I must have written it somewhere else. I’ll post it up next month, if we’re still around then.

Sources:
https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#trends_dailycases

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Numbers Go Up

The older I get, the more people I meet who need help.

Maybe it’s arrogant of me even to say it. But in my years, I’ve come to notice patterns in peoples’ behavior and speech that point to some underlying issues, or important turning points in their pasts.

I wish I wasn’t able to spot these clues. I’ve always been the type of person to help others before helping myself. I’d rather starve than let my friend go hungry. It’s also in my personality to endlessly analyze and dissect things until I understand them to their core. These two are dangerous together.

I have taught myself to tone down these two aspects of my personality. Or rather, I have taught myself to stop acting on these urges, because they were harming my relationships and my own health. Still, I find it easier to “diagnose” a complete stranger than a close friend or family member.

Because of that, I get the feeling I shouldn’t take my first impression of a person too seriously. This is especially true if I’m not able to find something “wrong” with that person in the first impression. Some are able to hide it well; others have deeper issues that don’t affect their personalities in a strong way; others yet may just have no issues at all.

When I was younger, an older friend of mine pointed out: “As you get older, you will start to see patterns in people. There are only a small number of the types of people in the world, and you can quickly make accurate judgements about them.” That was 2014. I never thought I’d see the day. It’s also not what I expected to happen while becoming wiser in my age. I’m also not quite sure what to do with these superpowers.

If I’ve met you recently, hello! Also, I may have made some mental judgements about you. I’m sorry.

In other news, I’m finding myself becoming more comfortable in social situations (I guess a year and a half of studying social things in quarantine has been helpful), and thus becoming more confident in myself. Is that good or bad? I don’t know. I still hate small talk, though. Get that away from me.

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Adulting

There aren’t enough hours in the day to do the things I want / need to do. And that’s just part of being an adult. Or so I hear.

This blog post is probably going to be real boring.

Between juggling studying different things, practicing music, catching up with friends, and the numerous projects I’m working on, I have to choose between sacrificing sleep, social life, or relaxing. I’m sure everyone’s seen the Venn diagrams before.

Purpose Venn Diagram - Human Business
Not exactly this one, but I stumbled across it and it fits one of my previous posts surprisingly well.
And, well, this post I guess.
I found it. Took me all of 10 minutes.
I mean 10 seconds.

heh.

As an adult, a few changes are made: “Good Grades” is replaced with “Performing well at work,” and another circle (“good parenting”) is added if you have kids. Yet another circle is added if you have other projects to work on. And it kinda gets hard to represent it in a 2D image.

It’s difficult to decide what to sacrifice, but it’s imperative that sacrifices be made, because there aren’t enough hours in the day.

Something that can help you decide what to sacrifice is that first Venn diagram–Figure g (for green). If you have something in your life that doesn’t fit into any of those circles, you can cut it out. It’s especially important to consider that top circle–“What I Love,” is not “What I Like.” If it doesn’t bring you immense joy, and doesn’t fit into the other circles, cut it out from your life.

It occurs to me that something like raising children might not fall into any of these circles, but you might not know whether you like raising kids until you have ’em. Use your best judgment.

My problem is that most of the things I do right now fit into these circles, but not the bottom one. And I’m realizing that I can probably cut video gaming out of my life. It only fits into the top circle.

I’m glad this blog post changed from me complaining about not having time… to reassessing my life choices.

Maybe I’ll start drinking coffee.

See the source image
Another Venn diagram. Just for you.