Its the end of November, I have to go to work soon, but I need to make one final daylog for Iron Noder. I have completed it without daylogs, but my daylogs bring me up to a total of 33 writeups. Pretty good deal.
The last time I completed Iron Noder was 2014. After that, my life got a lot more complicated. I was no longer living unemployed in Montana with endless time to read science-fiction novels and obsessively detail them here. My 2015 and 2016 were...very busy years, and ones that I grew a lot, and ones where I had to move out of my shell and abandon my habit of viewing life as something to be recorded instead of lived.
Earlier this year, back in June, I realized that with everything going on in my life, even after living in a foreign country and working as a business English teacher, that I had a lot of things I wanted to say. And enough time to say them. Compared to some of my other activities, making a writeup on E2 does not really take that much time and effort. And, surprisingly, in a world where everyone has an opinion and desperately wants to share it, there are still not many channels for doing so. Facebook, GPlus, Livejournal, Medium, Twitter, Instagram...the parade of social media sites that are either deeply lacking, or that I actively avoid for various reasons. Its still surprising to me that in a world where everyone is screaming out their opinion on any topic, the idea of spending 15 minutes to write a paragraph on here seems to many ex-users or potential users to be a terrible burden, and an archaic way to communicate. This is doubly so in light of recent investigations that have shown that Facebook and Twitter, among others, were used as propaganda arms by Russian intelligence. Luckily, no one thinks us worthy of use as a propaganda outlet.
My writeups in the past few months, and especially during this year's Iron Noder, have been around a theme. Far from the United States, I've become obsessed with the geography of the United States, how it has changed over time, and how the perception differs from reality: Onett, Bitter Root Town, Pre-war and Post-war Architecture, at a Glance, The Strange Shifting of Time and Space in Outdoor Areas, The Green Thing, Classic Rock, Out of Context and my review for Stranger Things are all about me looking back at the landscape that formed me in the United States. The platform of E2 is a great way to be able to tie seemingly disparate thoughts and ideas together, showing patterns like this. The Price is Right Rules of Courtship and The Inoculation of the Zine Years (and, in a way, The Awakening) have a similar purpose, although it is
in time instead of space. I wanted to talk about how the customs and beliefs that I grew up with have grown increasingly obsolete, just as the physical world I grew up in is gone. And the writeups about the protagonists of Homestuck, rather than being a way for me to pad my numbers, was done to connect these things together: Homestuck is a story about how our development is shaped by Time and Space, and so that was a way to tie these things together, although the reference was probably obscure.
Finally, E2 is not an encylopedia. It is a game. Often my writeups are short. I like to use the format of E2 for good effect: rather than trying to write an encyclopedia entry that explains everything, I try to explain the most salient feature (to me) of something, and leave people to connect the dots by following links. That was the original idea of E2, the ability to connect concepts, and it still remains the selling point to me. Not that this is a frivolous game, because the ability to realize that we are creating our own connections, and that information can be viewed in many different ways, is one of the key skills of critical thinking.
Hopefully I will continue to write through December, but probably not at quite this pace! And now I have to pay my rent, go to class, and go to work!