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Longreads 2015 #1

The Agency is a NY Times Magazine piece by Adrian Chen on the hunt for a Russian-run "Troll Farm". It is interesting. Brew some coffee and take a rather long read. When you finish (or decide you want to skip to the end), read below (which begins by quoting the end of the piece):







I had practice, after all, from my months spent on the trail of the Internet Research Agency. I Googled the various Russian spellings of my name every hour to catch the latest posts as soon as they surfaced on LiveJournal and VKontakte. I searched Twitter for the URL of the YouTube video to catch every post.A few days later, Soshnikov chatted with me on Skype. “Did you see an article about you on FAN?” he asked. “They know you are going to publish a loud article, so they are trying to make you look stupid in front of the Russian audience.”

I explained the setup, and as I did I began to feel a nagging paranoia. The more I explained, the more absurd my own words seemed — the more they seemed like exactly the sort of elaborate alibi a C.I.A. agent might concoct once his cover was blown. The trolls had done the only thing they knew how to do, but this time they had done it well. They had gotten into my head."

This is just adding another node on the network requesting the same information.
Making it higher-ranking.  More searched.
You cannot observe the thing without changing it.

You're not just part of the solution, you're also part of the problem.

The things is that as we go forward and stop making sense, you won't find the ability to tell the difference so clear as that old saying.  That's the thing about old sayings-- often they are as much about the contemplation as they are about the direct conclusion.

Then again, so too with all things, yes?

I'm back at home with my own coffee.
Thanks again to those who've hosted me over the holidays, but my coffee is better.
For me.
Your coffee is thin and bitter by thirds or too noisy by half or too metal or too dark or too light or too mixed up and blue.
Just the way all other beds are too hard or too light or too dark or too light or too shaped not at all right by the other occasional guests in the house.

When we all look for the same thing it becomes easy to find, though the things we might look harder for offer more reward.
Or at least a different way on through to nowhere so unique that we can't leave the details up to each reading mind.
To mine is the thing while sitting while walking while reading again.  While writing and seeing and believing in self
Whether or not it can be explained as an individual or a piece of a manifestation of a bigger thing like an iceberg
Or a different thing like a will-o'-the-wisp or an anglerfish.

How is what we each see choreographed around us?
How is it pre-/self-selected/curated/managed/edited/sorted/remembered?

And then what does it say if we all do it the same way or if we come to different conclusions about what is around us?
What is more likely and which is more true?

Perhaps the reason it is on the list is due to how many times it was read... or some rather than no relation to it being on this list.
Perhaps this means something rather than nothing.  But by virtue of it being on this list, it is now more of either nothing or something.

It's a cold world out there...

But then again as we walk we release heat.  We burn fuel.  We move we eat.
Are we making it warmer or colder?  We breed we create more of us to do more of "us".
Are we making it warmer or colder?
Are we asking the right question?
Are there wrong questions to ask?

Heavens, hell we go again on our own.
2016 A New Year.
I will read more things from 2015.
Aka "The Past."
With apologies to Mitch Hedberg:
"Every[thing you read] is from the past".

Which means everything you write is
A message for the future.

We all knew time-traveling was possible.
So possible we'd forgotten we'd already done it.
That we do it whenever we read and write and discuss.
Our past selves so near that the person we're with remembers too.
But by the end we're not ever even the same persons we began as.
So to with the meaning of all things, no?

We try and we try to do our best or our worst and then we're all revealed to have failed or succeeded by the standards of others as/after we pass from this life.
We each could as easily be an elaborate ruse as a truthful direct representation of self.
We then again must return to "What is self" and here we.

A belated toast to all the best we are and were and hope to be.
Whether we ever understand it, it is all we ever mean.

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"He's just this guy, you know?"