1. lets talk about aliens. More specifically lets talk about all the “science” networks non-stop marathon of shows about UFOs and ancient aliens. Put aside, for a second, the ridiculousness of putting these programs on a “science” channel and lets just look at some basic facts.
a) the nearest star to us is Proxima Centauri, which so far has shown no signs of planets orbiting it, but lets just be generous and say that an advanced alien civilization lives in orbit around Proxima. This planet would be 4.2 light years away from us (about 93 Million miles!) Since we know, thanks to Albert Einstein, that you cannot travel as fast (or even nearly as fast) as light , lets give a hypothetical alien craft the speed of the Voyager probe (38,200 miles per hour!) and if they left tomorrow how long would it take them to reach the Earth?
2434 years. two thousand and thirty four years!
Even if we double their speed to 76,400 miles per hour (in deference to their hypothetical advanced technology) it would still take an alien craft traveling from the very nearest star to earth over one thousand years to reach us. Do we really believe that an alien race would expend the manpower (not to mention the generations of astronauts) to come to our little dinky planet? Really, a THOUSAND years to look at our monkey faces?
b) If they decided to help the Egyptians build the pyramids (more on this later) then they would have had to have left Proxima when the Egyptian empire consisted of some few primitive traveling tribes. Which leads to some questions, like why the fuck would they bother coming here? How did they know our planet existed since they would have had to find it without radio waves which we have only been emitting for 100 or so years? We can barely identify gaseous giant planets which are millions of times the size of our Earth (and only in the last couple years) so our planet would be almost impossible to find visually.
c) Before we talk about the “ancient aliens” let me ask you this, who built the Coliseum ? the Romans, right? who built the Parthenon? the Greeks right?So, who built the pyramids? Aliens? Why is that? Why? Because we live in a culture that is so suffused with racism that we sometimes don’t even realize how racist we are! We have no problem believing that “white” races built all sorts of amazing things like castles, cathedrals, and discovered electricity but apparently all the “brown” races required alien assistance to do the same thing!
The Mayans? Brown people who needed alien help. The Egyptians? Brown people who needed alien help. The Macedonians? white folks who could scale mountains with fucking elephants unaided by aliens. No one thinks Ben Franklin had alien help, but lots of otherwise smart people believe that ancient people of color couldn’t invent anything without outside help.
d)The fact is that ancient alien belief is racist and based on nothing more than our inability to imagine that anyone who came before us had the brainpower to invent and innovate. The fucked up thing is that we know how all these ancient people built their great works using manpower, math, and planning, its all there in the archeological record, no aliens required. It is also the rather egocentric belief that we are so fascinating that an alien race would sacrifice the tremendous amounts of resources to come to Earth. I do believe that in a universe as vast as ours that there are other planets with life and some with life as advanced or more than us, I just can’t see any evidence or logic for how or why they would come here.
e) Why do I care? Because one of the most destructive things is delusion, in this case the delusion robs certain people of their true history and accomplishments, it reinforces the self-centered idea that we are the most important thing in the universe, and it distracts otherwise great minds with looking for a fiction when they could be curing cancer or looking for real phenomena that could help the very real and present problems we are actually dealing with on this tiny planet. Sorry, true believers, I don’t accept that it’s just a harmless diversion.
2. The instagram app has shown me once again that the world of tattooing is more amazing than ever! Time and again a name I have never heard of is putting out work so amazing and so beautiful and every time I open the app my mind is blown. There are many things that I and others would prefer were different about the world of tattooing these days, but if the main measure is the overall quality of work then I would have to declare right now the glory days of tattooing without question.
3. Do you know what this is?
That is an ultrasound picture of Cara and my little baby at about 18 weeks! You can’t tell much by an ultrasound of the personality or actual appearance, but you can know, with startling clarity, that there is a wee human inside my wife’s body and that 50% of the little boogers genes are from me! He or she (we don’t know and wont find out til he/she is born) was going bananas inside there, kung fu kicks, spinning, back-flips and its teeny tiny heart banging away like a demon. This baby looks like its going to be cah-ray-zee active!
Cara and I also took a couples prenatal yoga class, this was my first yoga class of any sort and it definitely reminded me of zazen in some ways, the further we get into this pregnancy the more grateful I am for the stability and sanity that Zazen has brought into, I can’t imagine being ready to be a dad without having my own shit at least a little bit together. I can’t pretend to know that I’m “ready’ to be a parent but i can say without hesitation that I’m at my very best mentally and spiritually these days and that’s got to help at least a little I hope!