The Nine Faces of Dave
2003-11-02 07:19:13 (UTC)

if CS is wrong, then i don't want to be right

So once again, my primary activities this weekend have been
movies and CS work. I spent a good four hours in the lab on
Thursday night, two hours yesterday, and I'm planning to hit
the lab after I get done here. Movie-wise, I've seen Ringu,
Shaolin Soccer, and Man on the Train. Ringu was scary in a
George Romero way; minimal atmospheric spookiness, downright
camp in parts (though I'm not sure that was intentional). I
frankly though the remake was much scarier. Shaolin Soccer
was a travesty, but a beautiful one. And L'Homme du Train,
in the original French, was excellent. I'm glad to see that
most of my French comprehension has remained intact.

Yesterday really got me down, even more than most Fridays; I
guess the laundry/radio combo is especially depressing when
it happens on Halloween. Of course, I'm not a party kind of
guy, but it's still depressing when everyone is having more
fun than you are. The nice weather actually brought people
out, so there wasn't the usual comfort of "Well, I may just
be chilling in my room, but so is everyone else."

Today was better though. I slept a good 11 hours, so I was
feeling all right. And I was actually hanging out with some
friends most of the day, so the feeling of solitude couldn't
really get me.

Socially, things are still the same. Though I have noticed
that my take on stuff seems to be very sensitive both to my
own experiences and those of others. It makes life a little
complicated when my outlook is inconsistent.

On one hand, I'd like to have a more active social life and
pursue relationships with women and all. On the other hand,
I'm very averse to the sort of drama that seems to accompany
that sort of life. Now maybe it's more related to the sort
of people I associate with than the nature of those sorts of
relationships, but it seems like everybody I know who is in
one has some hassle associated with it.

So how do I avoid that sort of thing? Assuming it's at all
possible, the key would probably lie in finding someone who
is open about stuff and isn't emotionally stuck in some high
school mode. It's one thing if stuff bugs you sometimes or
gets you down, and it's another thing entirely if you seethe
instead of venting in some innocuous manner and then moving
on with your life (good thing we have journals, eh?).

Then again, it's possible that drama comes with pretty much
any relationship, at least at this stage of the game. Maybe
there is no escape. After all, even if both people have an
aversion to that sort of shit, chances are one or both know
people still operating at a high school level, and only very
careful and talented people can truly separate the different
parts of their personal lives. Of course, we all know that
friends can easily fuck up shop on other stuff in your life,
especially your love life (I hate that phrase).

I don't claim to know the optimal solution. And chances are
it varies from one person to another. Much as it seems like
a game theory problem, I don't think we can formally express
this sort of thing, since it introduces irrational elements.

Maybe the key is to just let it be for now, and worry about
it later. That is, focus on my other shit during my college
years, and work on that after I graduate. Then, of course,
the question becomes "Will I miss out on valuable experience
by not dating during college?" I don't know the answer. My
guess would be probably so, but it's debatable whether it's
something you can recover from. I don't know who all is on
par with me in terms of dating experience, though I might be
able to venture some reasonably accurate guesses. I'd have
to figure they're probably either people like me or possibly
theory guys in CS (note: that wasn't sarcasm).

That said, I do know a few women I would probably have some
chance with were they either single or not coming down off a
bad relationship and thus adamantly single. And to me, that
suggests not so much that I'm doing something really wrong,
but that I just don't know enough of the women who would go
for someone like me (or that they're all taken).

Now you could say "Well, but if the women who would dig you
is such a small set that they're all unavailable, then maybe
you ARE doing something wrong." And I won't argue with you
on that point. The question is whether I want to be right.
If the other women are like, say, my neighbors, then forget
them. I have no use for superficial people who for whatever
reason refuse to acknowledge their neighbors. I've got news
for you, babe: it's kind of rude to not say hello to someone
you've lived next door to for two months.

I guess what I'm saying is that not only do I not know where
I stand, I also don't know where I want to be. And until I
figure that out, I don't expect much success.

And now, I'm off to the lab for some late-night coding. Who
says CS majors don't have fun?

This is Dave, signing off.