The Liebster Awards!

Thank you and Introduction

I am so proud and humbled to be nominated for this lovely award! Thank you so much, Vulture. It is very affirming to know that someone has found my crying out in the wilderness to be worth some attention. This nomination has challenged me to grow as a blogger and to search out my inner purpose. I greatly appreciate the opportunity and the perspective that this event has brought, and I hope to share that experience with future generations of Liebsters.

Here is the award.


Thank you for the applause. 🙂

In execution of my duties as a recipient of this prestigious award, I present to you the following: Answers to Questions, Arbitrary Facts, 5-11 Nominees, Questions for the Nominees, and the Rules. The nominees will be notified of their nominations forthwith.

Answers to Questions

1. Imagine the following scenario: Someone, somewhere inside the United states government has decided to kill you before you can talk. Why did they make that decision? How many killers get sent? What weapons do they plan to use? What is your planned response?

Following reception of the Liebster award, my blog went viral. Growing numbers of people began to disengage from the dominant economic paradigm and engage their communities and society according to the 5 principles of Global Weirding. One governmental agency or another approached me with the idea to use my blog to disinform the public in exchange for considerable benefits. I refused.

“So I turned around and forty thousand headmen hit the dirt
Firing twenty shotguns each and man, it really hurt
But luckily for me they had to stop and then reload
And by the time they’d done all that I was heading down the road”

Forty Thousand Headmen, Traffic

2. Do you have one or more declared “favorite” things that you don’t make time to include in your life? E.g. this applies if you say classical music is your “favorite” type of music, but you rarely (or never) listen to it.

I have a very hard time to pronouncing anything favorite, at least to the exclusion of other things (which is pretty much the definition of favorite). Strangely, I often forget to list the Beatles in my collection of favorite bands. But none of this really gets at the substantive issue. Until recently, urban agriculture is something that I had claimed as a favorite thing, but I was not actively engaged in its practice. There are likely other, similar examples…

3. There is some topic of which you have considerable knowledge, but it is inconvenient for you to teach this topic to other people. What makes it inconvenient?

My career is somewhat inaccessible to many people. As a civil engineer, some aspects of my daily work experience require a great amount of technical background that is difficult to communicate within a charming anecdote.

4. Of the various reports of paranormal phenomena you have heard, what makes the least credible different from the most credible?

In my view, the more credible paranormal phenomena are those I have witnessed. The least credible are squarely categorized among those I have not witnessed.

5. What is the most impressive depiction of the game of chess in a work of fine art? Does this remind you of other pieces of fine art?

I lack the experience to do this question justice.

6. How much experience do you have with computer games?

Not a great deal, especially in recent years. In my youth I spent hours playing Myst, SimCity 2000, SimAnt, SimEarth, SimTower, Civilization, and Master of Orion. If I may stretch the genre to include the previous generation of gaming consoles, I immensely enjoyed Red Dead Redemption and the Undead Nightmare expansion, as well as BioShock, BioShock Infinite, LA Noire, The Simpsons, The Walking Dead and Plants vs. Zombies.

7. What is an indulgence that you genuinely don’t enjoy, but other people always think that you do enjoy?

Conventional vacations/tourism. When I get some time off work, the last thing I want to do is bind myself to a rigid itinerary in an unfamiliar environment. Often, I’ll take vacation and just stay at home with my wife and kids. Maybe go to the park or something. When I do travel, I rarely visit the popular sites. I prefer to just BE in a novel city or landscape rather than touring it. I want to experience the life of the locality, not look at it from the outside.

8. How many years do you think will pass before the USA has a major currency crisis?


9. Have you ever experienced a truth so deep that you feel you shouldn’t try to explain it?

My answer to this question is so deep that I feel I should not try to explain it. Not out of fear that the gray-faced goons of the Corporatocratic State of Oceania will declare me an enemy combatant and attempt to silence me before I succeed in publishing this post. No. rather, I lack the articulation, nay, the eloquence to properly communicate the experience of this truth. I will sound foolish and so undermine the truth whose beauty I seek to share.

10. What is it that makes furry animals cute?

I protest that furry animals are not necessarily cute.

One night as I walked alone in the night returning home from a friend’s house, I heard a rustling some dozens of feet away that stopped me in my tracks. I turned to see a rat enchanted with gigantic growth. Its red eyes glowed brightly from the shadows as it sat upon its haunches, forepaws held near its gnarly-toothed muzzle. Seized with fear, I groped vainly at my irrational brain to generate a phantastic explanation. Then I realized it was an opossum. Opossums (or is it Opossa?) are furry, but not cute.!

Furthermore, and beside the point, cute animals are not necessarily furry. Have you ever seen a young maiasaura? No? Me neither. But I have seen forensic reconstructions and they are cute, but may not be furry. I find it fascinating that cute features are somewhat universal among the youth of charismatic macro-fauna and is quite possibly a form of self-defence.

11. What is the truest ghost story you know about?

See responses to #4 and #9.

11 Arbitrary Facts

I have learned more about dinosaurs in the last 3 years than I knew by the age of 11. This is directly related to my oldest son, who is –well, I don’t want to say obsessed – but, he’s – let’s just say – interested in dinosaurs. Incidentally, he is 3 years old. While he was watching Dinosaur Train, I’d be over here on Wikipedia reading further into whatever the topic of the episode was. Now, he pretends that he mainly prefers the more sophisticated documentary-style dinosaur shows, and the teenage Dino Squad, but we both know there is a special place in our hearts for Dinosaur Train.

I understand paradox to be the keystone of existential experience.

I have a strong inclination to eat spicy foods. I probably eat something spicy every day. I have decided to take a break from capsaicin for a little while. It hasn’t been easy, but I must say I have enjoyed some flavors I would otherwise have missed. The break is only temporary and this weekend I am planting several nightshades, including a few varieties of pepper. Mmmm… Peppers…

I think it’s good when my middle son, 18 months, gives his older brother a hard time.

I enjoy vaping. I had quit smoking for some 7 months or so when a whole bunch of heavy $#¡+ went down. I started smoking again. One day, faced with a $#¡t or get off the pot scenario I pulled into a smoke shop and dropped $50 on a vaporizer and some liquid. That was over a year ago. I had one cigarette late last September while drunk outside (couldn’t smoke inside) a bar in San Lorenzo de El Escorial. I did not enjoy it (the cigarette, of course, drinking at a bar in San Lorenzo de El Escorial was a blast!)

I just went out on my patio like an old man to see what all the hootin’n’hollerin’s about: bunch a young whipper-snappers up to some foolishness, I reckon.

I really appreciate my children providing me cover to act childishly in public.

I sometimes realize that labor, though a consequence of original sin, is not only a punishment, but a mercy which may keep us safe from sin.

I like to leave quotations from books, songs and movies in places where they are likely to be encountered unexpectedly.

I look forward to being an eccentric old man.

I am waiting in anticipation to meet my third son in a few months!

5-11 New Nominees

Goddess, Guitar, Government

Obsidian Oblique

Notes on Liberty

Melanie’s Life Online

Appalachian Son

Data Distributist

11 Questions

What is one concrete action you can take to live with more integrity?

Have you ever communicated with someone outside your native language?

Have you ever left behind everything familiar on a challenging adventure of personal growth?

What would you think if I told you that Machiavellian types are more likely to believe conspiracy theories?

Do you see the fnords?

Is there a game that you would love to play if only you could find others who wanted to play it too?

What is your experience with public speaking? That is to say, literally speaking, in front of a large group of people, many of whom you do not know well personally.

Do you regret more things that you have or have not done?

What is the Answer?

What is the Question?

Which was more difficult: 11 facts or 11 questions?


Here are the rules of the Liebster Award:

If you have been nominated for The Liebster Award AND YOU CHOOSE TO ACCEPT IT, write a blog post about the Liebster award in which you:

1. thank the person who nominated you, and post a link to their blog on your blog.

2. display the award on your blog — by including it in your post and/or displaying it using a “widget” or a “gadget”. (Note that the best way to do this is to save the image to your own computer and then upload it to your blog post.)

3. answer 11 questions about yourself, which will be provided to you by the person who nominated you.

4. provide 11 random facts about yourself.

5. nominate 5 – 11 blogs that you feel deserve the award, who have a less than 1000 followers. (Note that you can always ask the blog owner this since not all blogs display a widget that lets the readers know this information!)

6. create a new list of questions for the blogger to answer.

7. list these rules in your post (You can copy and paste from here.) Once you have written and published it, you then have to:

8. Inform the people/blogs that you nominated that they have been nominated for the Liebster award and provide a link for them to your post so that they can learn about it (they might not have ever heard of it!)