Month: June 2003

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The inner and the outer are complimentary aspects of the very same thing which exist in order to keep each other in balance.

According to Jung, each of us entertains essentially two personalities. The first and most obvious is the persona which is the commonly known personality that we project outwards and by which everyone knows us. The second and less known (and even less obvious) is the anima (for a man) and animus (for a woman). The inner and the outer personalities are complimentary. Men entertain an aggressive, macho, daring attitude which is balanced by the softer more emotional feminine attitude. Woman seem to be softer and effeminate on the outside, but more often than not they are solid and perseverance attitudes which keep them going in an insane world. Men like to act tough but cry on the inside, and women seem to get all emotional and teary while becoming stronger on the inside because of their ability to release inner tensions.

[Soul as anima]
"As to the character of the anima, my experience confirms the rule that is is, by and large, complementary to the character of the persona. The anima usually contains all those common human qualities which the conscious attitude lacks."
-- Carl Jung.

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This is the poor tooth that got yanked out... This is a picture of the poor unwanted tooth that Marlies got yanked out recently. It was necessary to remove this (bizarre-shaped) tooth because it was deformed and cramped the rest of her teeth too much, making them crooked. You see, this tooth never formed into a proper shape. Instead, its growth hesitated and then stopped half way as a spindly cone-shaped thingy. It looked like a miniature shark-tooth for some reason, kind of scary to look at, if you looked really closely. So it was good to have this fluke of nature extracted and removed from her life forever. But being the boringly sentimental person that I am, I felt a need to record the event and give the poor tooth some form of everlasting life on my web log. The tooth extraction episode took place a week ago now. Since then, her ever-tightening braces have shifted her teeth and moved them closer together. You can barely see (a slit) anymore that there used to be a tooth in there at all. Life goes on.

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Now if you click on the random image up on the top left-hand corner of this web page, you will be shown a list of the images directory.

I found this little jewel of a Perl script via the CGI Resource Newsletter which advertised the free script called WebImageLister.

Give it a try and find out for yourself.

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(Thanks alot to Kathleen for the following excerpt. I think it makes alot of sense)

"If you are spending your life struggling at work that has no meaning to you, and justifying it by saying that you must do it because it gives you the money you need to pay bills, then you are opting for some personal dishonesty with yourself. You have made money more important than your sense of purpose, and as long as you keep the priority in that order, you will always be lacking in purpose and total self-honesty!" -- DR. WAYNE DYER

DHARMA IS YOUR UNIQUE SPIRITUAL PURPOSE FOR LIVING
There are no accidents in a perfectly evolving Universe.
Everyone has a purpose in life, a unique talent, skill, or ability. Deepak Chopra states the following about dharma, "When you blend your unique talent with service to others, you experience the ecstasy and exultation of your own spirit, which is the ultimate goal of all goals!"

It's a real challenge to find your unique purpose for living. Unfortunately, most people spend over seventy percent of their life "making a living" doing work that they dislike. This can make life seem more like a "prison sentence" than an "adventure in living."

Factoring in the Law of Karma to this metaphysical scenario, many people are sowing and reaping what they don't want because "what you resist persists!" The key to living a happy life is to find what you love and do it!

As Buddha said, "When you do the work you love, you'll never have to work another day in your life!"

John Caple shares with us in his book, Finding The Hat That Fits, that there are three reasons why finding the work that fulfills your purpose for living is so important.

They are: (1) To live on purpose is to discover your power, your capacity to add value to your every experience and to the lives of those around you. (2) Finding and living your life's mission adds meaning and dignity to your life, because living on purpose is a noble adventure. (3) When you have a sense of purpose, you stop worrying about life and you find joy in each moment. You laugh more and lighten up because you love what you are doing.

FINDING YOUR DHARMIC PURPOSE FOR LIVING
What would you do for a living if you had one billion dollars? What would you do for a living after you have bought everything that you always wanted and traveled to every place you ever wanted to see? Take a moment and contemplate what fascinates you. What are your hobbies interests, and talents? Allow yourself to imagine what it would be like to have the freedom to do anything that you wanted to do, absolutely anything!

A HU NOTE
One way that you can tell when you are working at your dharmic purpose for living is that time flies! When I am writing, five hours feels like five minutes! Another sign that you're working on purpose is that you feel that what you are doing is servicing mankind. Pay attention to any persistent impulse to do or try something new. Pay attention to new people who come into your life who seem to call you into a new direction. There are no accidents in a perfectly evolving Universe. Therefore, any person that comes into your life you have attracted there for a reason!

(This has been quoted from some book by a well-known spiritual teacher called HU something or other)

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The way I see it is that I have been granted this unique opportunity to prove myself in dealing with insecurity and an unknown future full of hidden risks. Kind of like a gift from heaven you might say. Maybe I will end up in the dog house or perhaps I will somehow pull things off. And then again, maybe I just need to live day by day and remain confident that things are going according to the ultimate plan.

Running on empty with only one fourth of your previous salary as so-called government compensation is not my idea of fun. Time seems to be running out and it is time to do something about it. But what?

Life consists of a number of phases, and the purpose of each phase is to struggle by overcoming certain obstacles in order to learn and improve yourself. Sounds trite, and alot of people try to make themselves feel better by thinking this way, you might say. Fine, everyone is entitled to their own beliefs. So let me have my own, I would say.

Life would have been pretty boring (and useless) had I been enslaved in a predictable routine of working at a desk answering the telephone all day even if I was assured of a good pension when I grew old. But then I would turn sixty-five and it would be too late, wouldn't it? I would look back on my life and feel pretty bad that I had not done more.

Things are improving, aren't they?

More and more often, I am sitting in the car or just reading a book outside. All of a sudden I am struck by this peacefulness, and I feel totally relaxed and positive for a barely noticeable moment of time. It goes as quickly as it comes, and I do not have much control over the coming and the going. This feeling is nice, but then I wake up to reality and get all nervous and worried again. What I need to do is actively create those mindful moments and prolong them as much as possible.

Alright, let's go now.

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Yesterday afternoon a box from Amazon arrived, and it was my long awaited for copy of Designing with Web Standards by Jeffrey Zeldman. Right now I am just sawing through the book and absorbing everything I can. Highly recommended for anyone wanting to know more about using web standards in a world lacking structure and common sense.

What he says makes perfect sense. By designing and implementing web sites using a standard and structured way, one can work cost-effectively and more efficiently, and enjoy it all at the same time.

Unfortunately, due to a number of factors (like the mad race a few years back to get as much as possible as much as quickly on the Internet -- thanks to the good old blinded greediness called commercialism), this has not happened.

The ironic thing is that it makes sense in a logical way, but who cares? Try to sell quality and usability to your average manager and he will more than likely scoff and spit in your face.

That is why this book offers a convincing set of arguments to help visionaries like myself get things going like they were always meant to be. And make money at the same time.

Here are a number of other sites you might be interested in:

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Discovered this great web site called ikwilwerken.nl (which means "I want to work" in Dutch) where anyone who is unemployed can interact and exchange ideas. The mission is to help anyone without work by bringing common souls together as a group, which is stronger and more hopeful.

This evening they are having a meeting at the Hotel New York in Rotterdam. After exercising some and then sweating in the good old sauna, I'll drive down there and check it out. I am very curious.

It never hurts becoming more social and getting to know other people. In order to recognize other poor souls there, people will be wearing t-shirts with the text "ikwilwerken.nl" on the the front.

Crazy world we live in, isn't it?

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When it comes to organizing things I guess you could say that I am boringly predictable. For example, our summer vacation has been researched in depth and finally arranged. The times, places and accommodations. This is where we will be headed:

A nice well-balanced vacation of mountains, beach and countryside.

This is a pretty loosely made schedule with a resolution of one week at most. In the past, I had it down to the day with a daily itinerary up and running one year in advance. Even certain days were subdivided into hourly activities.

Times have changed. After all, a vacation is supposed to be fun and relaxing, isn't it?

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You might find it a strange concept to contemplate. Recent research has indicated that water can remember things. So perhaps homeopathy has some substance of truth afterall, e.g. the idea that solutions diluted millions of times to leave just one last molecule in place might not be that crazy an idea at all.

The New Scientist magazine article called Icy claim that water has memory gives more details for those interested to learn more.

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For our wedding anniversary, Thea and I spent the weekend spoiling ourselves in the south of Holland at a health retreat called Thermae 2000.

Just floating around in luke-warm water, inhaling all the super-healthy fumes and other scents, soaking in the afternoon rays, running around naked from one sauna to the other, savoring a fancy five coarse dinner of French cuisine, etc. All the while far away from the noise of the kids and society.

Hard to believe that we have been married now for exactly 18 years, and that we have known each other exactly 23 years. That is exactly half my life time ago.

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Fresh from the press the latest exciting news.

GishTeq partners with Mondosoft as a recognized reseller and consultant for the state-of-the-art MondoSearch product line. This advanced search technology provides integrated site search, reporting and optimization for all web environments."

More information can be found at the MondoSearch Product page.

Check out the other historical events in the news archive.

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In order to learn even more about the ins and outs of Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), I purchased a great book Eric Meyer On CSS, part of the New Riders series called Mastering the Language of Web Design. I already know alot about CSS, but a good overview like this never hurts. In fact, you even pick up a couple jewels of information here and there.

Imagine the huge difference a one line change in the style sheet can make, and you will be happy beyond belief. At least that is my experience. Take my GishTeq web site for example. I admit that it looked pretty filled and the text was crammed together.

div#content p {
    text-align: justify;
    margin-top: 0px;
    line-height: 1.33em; /* I added this line */
}

All I did was change the line height, e.g. so that one-third of the current font size opens up between the lines. The added white space between the lines makes the act of reading easier and more enjoyable. The user's experience is improved, making my web site contents more accessible in the process.

So, you are asking yourself, how can this small change make so much difference? I will attempt to illustrate the effect by comparing two layouts.

Here is a paragraph with the default line-height equal to 1.0em:Here is a paragraph with the new-and-improved line-height equal to 1.33em:
Here is a bunch of text which is pretty much readable you could say but also at the same time gives the impression of being crammed up together and perhaps more difficult to peruse than should be absolutely necessary.
This is an example of a bunch of text which is a bit more readable because I have increased the white space appearing between the lines freeing up the text slightly thereby making the process of reading easier and more enjoyable.

Can you see the difference? Sometimes a very little bit makes all the difference in the world.

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This entry may seem like it describes some recent nightmare of mine, but it has nothing to do with any dream I have had. Believe it or not, it really happened. It could only happen in Holland of all places.

For the last couple of years, I have been having an aggravating tooth-ache which has been getting progressively worse and worse. In a previous entry called Like a teacup, I describe a visit to the dentist in which he lectures me about the reason for this pain and then claims that it has been fixed. At the time, he replaced an old filling in a molar way at the back of my lower jaw, exclaimed that yes he had drilled out the minuscule crack which had been causing the pain, and in triumph said that I would no longer feel any pain. Hurray! When I told him that I was not quite so sure that that was where the pain was coming from, that while I could not pinpoint the exact source of the pain I had this feeling that the aggravation was coming from a spot closer to the front of my molars not the back, he simply shook his head and said I was wrong. Couldn't be, impossible. Why listen to an ignorant patient with a tooth-ache when during one swift drilling bout the dentist can take care of it on his own. Afterall, that's what he has been trained to do. Who cares about what the boring patients have to say anyway -- they don;t know anything about the true art of masterpiece dentistry.

Okay, so it is a couple of months later. The pain is still there, and it is still getting worse and worse. I cannot even bite any more on that side of my mouth. Build up some courage and go to that crazy dentist again. Or is it I who am getting crazy? We will have to wait and see.

Hmm, the dentist has to think about all that I have told him. You can see by the expression on his face that he does not like the idea at all that he might have made a misjudgment earlier that year. A blemish on his professionalism, oh dear. I point to the spot with the tip of my tongue and then press the area with my forefinger. That's about the area, I tell him. Think, think, but he is running late and he has to think quickly! Okay, he mumbles after making a quick and definite decision, I'm going to have to go in there right now and take care of it. Let's go.

Without telling me what he is going to do, he grabs the drill and pushes my jaw open. He is pressing down on my chest with his right elbow, so hard in fact that I cannot raise my arms to resist. Is he doing this on purpose? He starts to drill, deeper and deeper, smoke is rising from my mouth and I can smell that awful smell of burning whatever. The pain is unbelievably excruciating. I am flailing my legs, sweating profusely and my heart is racing at an ever accelerating rate ready to explode. I can feel the tip of the drill hovering ever so precariously above some nerve at the base of the evil tooth. Hurry, hurry before it is too late. I feel trapped and I am panicking beyond my wildest dreams.

Finally, there is a slight pause, and with a forceful push of my arms upwards I break the dentists hold. I scream out loud, Jesus Christ aren't you going to give me any $%@! Novocaine! I start cussing, Jeez!

[An aside: you see, in Holland it is not uncommon to undergo minor dental work without any Novocaine, including simple cavities which need to be filled. In this country there is a common hesitation when using medication unnecessarily, like penicillin, aspirins and sleeping pills. Normally however, the dentist usually gives you the choice of whether or not he should numb you. I guess my dentist was then too much in a hurry and did not feel like becoming entwined in a discussion of the merits and/or disadvantages of using and/or abusing Novocaine. Back to the story.]

Oh yeah, some Novocaine. Guess that would help. Inject three squirts, jab jab and jab, wait half a second and then continue. Can you feel anything now? Yes, I can still feel it, he does not want to wait before the numbing takes place. No you can't feel anything, he tells me loudly. Yes, I can! Wait another split second. With his thumb he massages the area impatiently and then starts drilling, deeper and deeper. The pain is getting less, finally, but it is still unnerving me (sorry about the pun). In no time he has finished, put in the filling, and it is time to go. I am pretty shaken up.

When I stand up I am poised precariously atop two trembling legs which barely hold me up. Although he has injected me with Novocaine, I can still feel the nerve throbbing. I hope that the pain will get less and disappear completely. The dentist thinks that he has gotten it for sure this time around. He assures me with the very same grimace he gave me the first time. Yeah, sure. I might feel it a very tiny bit, but it should almost be gone by now. Be patient and give it a couple days.

It has now been two days, and I can still feel it. The pain is slight, it has gotten less, but I can still feel it. No not really, I am not so sure the pain is getting any less at all. I still cannot bite on that side of my mouth, but it could be a subconscious fear that I might accidentally break off the whole tooth if I am not careful. Can you imagine? Wouldn't that be a waste of all that suffering and pain: the tooth just breaking off in the end for nothing. Ironic.

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There must be some significant reason why I always choose locker number sixty-nine as my storage area of choice at the fitness center. When I step downstairs and enter the long hall, I spot it to the right exactly at eye level. The tip of my nose nearly brushes up against the door which is slightly ajar. The locker is smack dab in the middle of the big chest of lockers, exactly in the middle, and interestingly enough it is never occupied. Just waiting for me to use it, and that is what I do. Why sixty-nine then?

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This is the house in Asheville, North Carolina where my hero Kiffin Yates Rockwell grew up.


The house that Kiffin Yates Rockwell grew up

Now if it weren't for Asheville, and if this house had never been built, and if the Rockwell family had never moved here, and if that garden had been planted a slightly different way, would I still be here? What about that tree in the front yard? The one that Kiffin had more than likely climbed alot during his childhood, slowly but surely collecting enough courage as he grew to adolescence, just the beginning of his brave and dauntless adventure at even higher altitudes where shooting down those Germans during WWI was such an important endeavor?

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Let's get rid of all that dust once and for all. It is never too late for a good old-fashioned Spring cleaning. All the books and shelves and lights and anything else I could find around the house has been freed of dust, vacuumed, rearranged and put back together again. Much work and sweating, but today was Sunday -- I was supposed to relax. Whatever, at least it is all done until the next year comes around. I hope that the dust does not come back too quickly, but you know how dust can be.

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Trying to find decent baseball shoes in The Netherlands has become quite a quest. Baseball is not what you would call a very popular sport here, and the very few sport stores that offer baseball stuff are few and far between, and far away also. Once you get there, the selection is minimal and they just do not happen to have the shoe size you need. Next season (meaning next year) the following shipment will arrive from Taiwan -- of all places. I promised Lennart a good pair of cleats for his birthday, which has been almost a month ago. We finally found a place in the Rotterdam area using the good old Internet. A bit more expensive (125 euros a pair, can you believe it?!) but at least they have the right size as well as a half-decent selection.

Off we go.

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Today marked yet another important milestone in the wonderful and unpredictable history of GishTeq.

This is what I did. I sent off my very first official offer for a web site rebuild and analysis prospect, and all for a really good deal (don't forget that my share remains a mere twenty-percent margin). I think I have been busy full-time the last couple of days just to produce two carefully thought out A4-pages of convincing text and prices in the most attractive form I could think up. Alot of work that's for sure. The quotation was higher than I had hoped and I am sure what the potential customer had expected. It does not compare well with the offers from the other competitors, but it is the best I could do -- without running around aimlessly and working hard for crumbs or for nothing or maybe even coming out in the red (shame on me).

I cannot compete with cheap solutions made by companies that hire Russian students when my unique added value is the quality and the reliability of the solution I stand by in an honest and down-to-earth way.

But will this attitude eventually sell and produce any money?

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My so-called luxurious office suite is located in the bedroom, up in the attic and a little off to the side. It is an ideal spot to work alone, think and concentrate, and prepare myself for the future. However, it is very hot outside and that makes things different in here. Very very hot, which means that due to the natural laws of physics hot air rises and collects here in my luxurious office suite. I am sweating profusely and trying to type the keys without dripping too much or letting my fingers slip and slide over the keyboard. Boy is it hot up here, but business calls.

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When the young man invited me up to his room, I never expected that it would be so difficult to reach. From one floor to the next it was a labyrinth of hallways, small doors, and holes in the wall that I had to squeeze through, often while crawling on my belly. Each story was reached via a new and challenging way, namely wooden planks on the side upon which to pull myself up, an old rope hanging from the ceiling, and piles of bricks which had been broken out of the walls in order to be able barely to squeeze through to the adjacent chamber. Finally upon almost reaching the very top, I realized I had forgotten some important item required for the meeting and had to make it back all the way down to the bottom floor. Upon which the whole process of struggling, squeezing my body through impossible holes, and maneuvering the bizarre stairwells climbing along the walls started all over again. I must have had to climb up and down about ten times, and the dream probably lasted a good portion of the night, or so it seemed.

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Information

This personal weblog was started way back on July 21, 2001 which means that it is 7-21-2001 old.

So far this blog contains no less than 2291 entries and as many as 1876 comments.

Important events

Graduated from Stanford 6-5-1979 ago.

Kiffin Rockwell was shot down and killed 9-23-1916 ago.

Believe it or not but I am 10-11-1957 young.

Began well-balanced and healthy life style 1-8-2013 ago.

My father passed away 10-20-2000 ago.

First met Thea in Balestrand, Norway 6-14-1980 ago.