What matters to me most? Feeling loved.
After that? Saving Earth-based lifeforms from being doomed to the same planet forever.
Otherwise, there’s a lot of life to live between those two statements.
In fact, I love every person/animal I meet in the moment as if it’s the last moment I live and the only person/animal I’ll ever know.
I understand I won’t always be loved, that fear of rejection gets in the way of giving/feeling love sometimes.
We have our personality traits…sigh…
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In 1984, I took off in my parents’ station wagon and drove across the North American continent, covering the distance between Nashville to Seattle, Seattle to Los Angeles, Los Angeles to Kingsport, Tennessee, in about 8 to 10 days.
Like a yo-yo or animal on a leash, I returned “home” after running away.
What is home?
On that short trip, I had time to think to myself.
I was running away from a life I had started to establish with a woman who was mentally well outside the bounds that my subcultural training had prepared me for.
Her name, believe it or not, was Amy Easter.
I have written a book with her in it, a book whose title I can’t remember right now but it covered a period of my life when I was a smalltime drug dealer who hung out with Amy and her/my friends.
I was in my early 20s, wanting something more than what my upbringing had provided.
I had achieved many goals under the guidance/shadow of my father — Eagle Boy Scout, recipient of a U.S. Navy four-year college scholarship at Georgia Tech.
Did my parents, teachers, etc., know who I really was?
They probably had a hint because of my tendency to rebel in humorous ways.
Dad once said he was glad I wasn’t a child of the 1960s because I might/could have died in a student protest.
I’m not the student protest kind of guy.
My argument was not with the”Establishment” itself.
My argument was with me.
Who am I?
I don’t know that I’ve ever changed internally.
My thought processes still are true to the self I was as a conscious/conscientious/precocious five-year old.
I get jealous when people behave the way I behave and appear better at doing something I am trying to do.
My jealousy causes me to “act out,” to move tangentially into a behaviour I can call my own and “win,” if you will.
I’m pretty sure this behaviour is related to having a younger sister who took away my parents’ full attention to me. At least it makes logical sense to believe such a formative behaviour could belong to the set of states of energy that is me.
So, who am I?
For starters, I am this arrangement of electronic bits.
As far as I know no one else, not even a computer algorithm, could put this exact sequence of characters in a row.
So I am these words as evidence of my behaviour.
But a computer algorithm can assemble an approximate sequence of such words together that would closely resemble a human typing a blog entry, believable enough for another human to align mimic circuitry with this imaginary human and feel connected/compassion.
Therefore, although I feel kinship with and ownership of these words, because I believe I wrote them, they are no more a part of me than this keyboard I type on or the air I breathe.
These words are evidence of a planet’s progression, a planet with liquid water that fostered chemical reactions which led to me/us here.
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Words are words, symbols, labels, representations only. The cat in the house and the bacteria on the back of my hand have no comprehension of words as I see/think them.
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To get from here to there (Earth-based lifeforms on the Moon, Mars and elsewhere), I want a concrete plan for myself to get there with them.
Pie-in-the-sky dreams are well and good because they inspire people to do great things in the name of dreams.
Meanwhile, organisations containing organisms we shall for convenience call humans are down in the nitty, gritty details of off-Earth exploration.
I believe many of them are on the right track but still see humans in our present form as the explorers.
I disagree wholeheartedly.
Humans evolved on Planet Earth. Although it’s well and good to imagine people like us bouncing around on Mars, it’s not our current species’ destination.
We have sent electromechanical surrogates to scout out the solar system for us, testing the air and soil, the cosmic radiation, mapping out new territory.
But it is not for us that the scouts are exploring new territory.
They explore for our descendants, descendants not born naturally from our groin/womb.
= = = = =
How strongly do I see this future?
Clear as the dinner bell my parents rang to call us back to our suburban home when my sister and I were playing with friends in the neighbourhood.
There are no excuses for not hearing that bell.
Do I want to see myself on Mars staring back at Earth?
Of course I do but I know it’s not going to happen.
Not myself as I am right now, or even a scaled-down version of myself (i.e., losing a lot of weight).
No, the version of myself that will live/thrive on Mars is wholly me yet not me, beyond an approximation, much better at some tasks than me, and totally out of the realm of the human I am.
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To get there requires a reassessment of what I call “home.”
And to get there requires concrete steps, practically set in stone, mortared with tears of sorrow as I leave the life I’ve known behind.
[Cue next blog entry]