Justin Hall's personal site growing & breaking down since 1994

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16 january

bernie sahlins dropped by, he's old friend of george's. some time ago, he was one of the founders of second city. and, at some point, he taught a comedy class at university of chicago. now, he's george's age and he does performance consulting in the area.

i was cooking dinner for mom and george, he came over to eat as well.

i cooked salmon on the grill, portobello mushrooms sauteed with onions and garlic and white wine, and beans and greens.

gosh does my neck hurt.

we argued over the world-class-citiness of san francisco; he stated that a dearth of entertainment options left it cultureless, i countered that while the city might be lacking in theatre in the traditional sense, its surrounding areas were burgeoning with contemporary youth/hispanic/asian/african american/queer culture. there's loads of experimental work being done there.

inevitable inquiry into my soon-developing life resulted in an extended conversation on my thesis and schoolwork. he recommends william james - varieties of religious experience.

(i ask him for some advice on being a professional storyteller. we talk about performance, i thought i was telling stories, perhaps entertaining.

i wasn't entertaining, he sez, i was showing them a vision of how to lead life. i was showing them what the choices are. people learn by identifying with you.

that happens online perhaps i argue. he argues not. [insert more nuanced version of the kurt vonnegut argument here - bias against the internet medium based some on distaste for screen reading, bernie based his in part on the web's lacking narrative structure

bernie sez:
often art, like standup comedy, serves the self,
or improv: ask someone who just performed improv comedy and they'll say "i had fun."
art is an invitation to an idea.
comedy is conservative. pointing to an ideal, the difference between now and then.

we move to this medium, the web, proust, i say: people create worlds in literature, and that's possible online. people are finding each other, themselves out there. maybe not so much in individual works, but in the whole they, reader, wrings? works online are part of a larger story that's the same human story, only here, connections between disparate pieces are made apparent.

meaning, the sacred, community can not be found online he maintains.
his definition is in part determined by durkheim - community requires the sacred. something transcendant to which people pay homage.
modern day sports don't cut it. people congratulate each other on touchdowns and then cut each other off in the parking lot.

think iran - religion without walls.

is tech or popular culture fulfilling previously religous roles? i ask
i mean, if religion or community is something we need and now is dispersed or gone or something, have we replaced it? can we do without?

well he exists without a community, he says, and not all communities are good, he observes: serbia is a community.

so everything's a mixed bag, technology is more of the same. that's what i'm basically going to write my thesis about.

for equally timeless conclusions about the supposedly shifted now, he recommends me marshall sahlins, his brother the world famous anthropologist. he's thinking similar stuff (too bad he left for bejing today), read his culture and practical reason.

then, parents and bernie watching the bulls game, and faith calls. from nevada:

what're you doin' these days?
i'm a ho. really. i just distance myself from it and i'm fine.
are you safe?
yeah. it's a bordello, so it's like professional.

she's moved from mobile, she's a journalism/sociology student in austin. before she starts school, she's working in nevada to raise a little money for herself. no shit. god damn. that's something.

i met this girl once, for one day, and since then recieved one email from her. i had her address but hadn't mailed her yet. she called cuz she found a note i wrote her that day in taco bell. so, you gotta come to austin she sez.

she's gonna work, then this summer, go to europe, with a eurail pass - "i got to see them pyramids first man. i'm gonna see every fuckin' country."

i searched up may 28th (1996) in my handwritten notebook, looking for her last name - "hello. this is faith the efferdescent aries + your kindred love child. your hair is like macrame, and i'm glad we met. write to me vagabond ubermensch!"

talk about projection - that girl. i'm sitting here with a powerbook watching late night charles bronson and robert duvall in "the breakout" it's nearly four am and i'm typing. she's hustling to finance seeing the pyramids in europe.

you go girl.

justin of the jungle
updated iglesias with links, ecotourism with a photo

met with my mom's financial advisor today, to talk about how i can provide financial structure for myself as a freelancer.

he recommends
two bank accounts - one personal, one business
two credit cards, charge things to have itemized expense lists

in two different categories, for tax purposes.

save every piece of paper. if i feel inclined, use quicken or quickbooks.

(i feel inclined)

what about deductions? i write about clothes, food, books, music, so everything is research.

nope. like he told the newscaster, if you use that 100$ haircut in the off hours, it's a non-deducatable personal expense.

hmm, a tricky situation. almost makes me feel in favour of some kind of flat tax (which george and bernie later lament as a bread and milk tax on the poor). anyways, i'm going to have a full time job after college managing myself so i figure running my books is a good way to get my shit together.

maybe someday i'll use a financial advisor and maybe become a non-profit. i mean this web page is an educational endeavor, supported by donations; those donations and the guy who uses them should be tax free - justin's links is a public good, right? uh huh.

the next morning, i hear that my grandfather called the police during the night. after he had a small stroke over a week ago he was transferred to a rest home with grandma in stuart. there they won't let him take any pills that they haven't approved, and he wanted to get into his apartment nearby to get his vitamins and medicines. they wouldn't let him, so he called the police.

unruly boys     you go grampa.

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