Serenity Now!

One of my stitches came out today.  It grossed me out, but I’m glad I didn’t swallow it.  The pain is tolerable without pain medication now.  The swelling has also gone down quite a bit.  I’m proud of my body for healing so well.  I feel like a healing ninja.  I’m re-reading the Stormlight Archive books in anticipation of a new installment being published.  But I found out that the next book by Brandon Sanderson will be in a different series.  Oh well, It’s another one I’ll enjoy reading in a week or so.  He does very well with releasing new novels.  Most of my other favorite authors have a much longer time scale between releases.  I’m fine with waiting.  I just hope they don’t die before they finish.  But even when that happened with the epic series by Robert Jordan, it was finished using his notes by Brandon Sanderson.  I really like the Wheel of Time series, so I’m glad it was completed.

I enjoyed re-reading The Pickwick Papers recently.  It’s one of my favorites by Dickens.  He was like the Bernie Sanders of that era through his novels.  I wish Ayn Rand would have studied Dickens’ books, not only for their messages, but also for a good example of how to deliver it without being painfully redundant.  I think she could have been a much better writer if she put as much effort into her story telling as she did into her propaganda.  I still read The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged every so often.  Objectivism is exaggerated far beyond what reality can support, but it still has a few valid points.  I deeply regret that her emotional intelligence was overshadowed so much by her intellect.  That lack of balance held back her true potential.  When I see people living today who still regard Objectivism as a viable philosophy, I shake my head in sadness.  It’s become a magnet for insecure pseudo-intellectuals.  I always hope they outgrow it.

The characters in the Stormlight Archive challenge me in ways I haven’t clearly defined yet.  The child within me wants my hero to be clear and pure.  The older, more sophisticated part of me wants to have to think in order to recognize them.  To see through the layers of believable shortcomings and flaws, and discover the hero inside.  Brandon Sanderson presents neither.  His heroes are different.  They may seem flawed, but after more data and thought, I find myself adjusting my assumptions and definitions of what makes a hero.  It’s an enlightening process.  It’s probably why I love his novels so much.  They require a bit of personal growth in order to get from them all that you can.  I suspect this is part of why Charles Dickens was and is so beloved as a novelist.  It’s also where Ayn Rand failed.  I wanted John Galt to be a hero.  Instead, he turned out to be a prick.  Howard Roark was an asshole.  We admired their accomplishments and talents, but that’s not enough.  A hero has to be more.  A hero has to inspire us to be better human beings.  John Galt and Howard Roark inspired us to be self absorbed assholes.  Pseudo-intellectuals embrace this because it was intelligently presented, and they think it makes them elite, when in reality, it exposes them as pathetic.

I see it as a filter.  I don’t put forth effort in relating to people who are pro-objectivists.  It allows me to pay attention to those who aren’t driven by fear.  Life is too short to bother with converting assholes.  Plenty of fish, and all that.