putting the trans in transhumanism

baz, 19, they/he.

Last update
2022-08-12 03:05:14

    [Video description: A video of a person talking into the camera, sounding somewhat harried and breathless. Text at the top says "1 min 45 sec." They monologue as follows:

    "Ok, so, [sighs], I just--oh, what is this? What is, what is this? [bats some hanging cloths out of the way of the shot] I just got home from the craft store, right? And--hold on. This is all the yarn I bought, [puts a large, stuffed tote bag on the ground], but I had to buy--hold on. [takes another tote from their shoulder and drops it on the ground] I had to buy a yardstick, right? [shows yardstick] A yardstick, for a sewing project that I'm working on, and immediately two things became very apparent to me, along the lines of, humans are not good at conceptualizing...[pause]...metrics.

    Ok, so...this--a yard is 3 feet, 36 inches, about 92 centimeters, right? My D&D character is 3 feet tall. My D&D character would come up...[stands the yardstick up next to them; the top doesn't even reach their hip] to about yea high on me. I'm not a tall person! I'm 5 foot 5! I'm not a tall person. Here!

    This changes everything about how I've been RPing various conversations I've been having with people, because, what? Am I looking up at them like--like this the entire time? Why don't they get down to my level? Rude!

    Second thing! Second thing that becomes apparent to me: see this? [points at the 12-inch mark on the yardstick] That's 12 inches. Do you see how big 12 inches is?! That is like...[shows that 12 inches is approximately the length of their lower arm] Do you understand? If somebody...has a dick...like...[long pause] Like... [holds yardstick in front of their crotch, looking aghast] Absolutely no!

    ...These two things are not...related. Thank you.]


    [Additional ID : A TikTok video by user @madzoffmain]


    I don’t remember if this was in the book or if I heard her tell a story in an interview, but I learned somewhere years ago that when Allison Bechdel sent her mother a draft copy of Are You My Mother? (Bechdel’s frankly very exposing graphic memoir about her relationship with her mother), asking for, I don’t know? Feedback? Permission? Absolution? her mother’s whole and entire response was “It coheres.” Two words and a period. And it’s absolutely true about that book and the most impressive thing about it, actually. The book collages an enormous amount of time and space and thought into a coherent piece of art. It could so easily have failed to do so, but it succeeded. I think about this all the time both because of the efficiency of Bechdel’s mother’s commentary and the myriad conclusions I find myself itching to leap to about her personality based on that single anecdote, but also because it got my thinking about coherence as an artistic value. As perhaps the final artistic value. So, you had something to say. Did you say it?


    If I remember correctly it was an email, too, without a greeting or salutation, which is so white christian northeasterner it makes me want to scream. Not the point.


    Like. Ms Helen Bechdel did not choose to share whether she considered her daughter’s work truthful, or necessary, or kind. She did not corroborate or contradict Allison Bechdel’s story about her. She only acknowledged that the story cohered. Which like, point one, master stroke, because it means she’s interacting with the work as a reader rather than as a character, but point two, maybe a story doesn’t actually have to be truthful or necessary or kind. Maybe that isn’t what storytelling is. Maybe a story just has to cohere. Certainly someone being told a story from the outside doesn’t have the tools to know if a story was honest. When you’re told a story you only know if it coheres. How much of what we think of as honesty and courage in storytelling is really just coherence. I’ve been a little crazy about this anecdote since I was roughly fifteen.


    My random unsubstantiated hypothesis of the day: the popularity of "stim" videos, fidget toys, and other things like that is a warning sign that something's Deeply Wrong with our world.

    Don't freak out. I am autistic. These things are not bad. However, can we just...take a second to notice how weird it is that there are entire social media accounts full of 10-second videos of things making crunching noises, people squishing slime in their hands, and objects clacking together, and that enjoying them is mainstream and normal?

    It seems that nowadays, almost everyone exhibits sensory-seeking behavior, when just a decade ago, the idea of anyone having "sensory needs" was mostly obscure. It is a mainstream Thing to "crave" certain textures or repetitive sounds.

    What's even weirder, is that it's not just that "stim" content is mainstream; the way everything on the internet is filmed seems to look more like "stim" content. TikToks frequently have a sensory-detail-oriented style that is highly unusual in older online content, honing in on the tactile, visual and auditory characteristics of whatever it's showing, whether that's an eye shadow palette or a cabin in a forest.

    When an "influencer" markets their makeup brand, they film videos that almost...highlight that it's a physical substance that can be smudged and smeared around. Online models don't just wear clothes they're advertising, they run their hands over them and make the fabric swish and ripple.

    I think this can be seen as a symptom of something wrong with the physical world we live in. I think that almost everyone is chronically understimulated.

    Spending time alone in the forest has convinced me of this. The sensory world of a forest is not only much richer than any indoor environment, it is abundant with the sorts of sensations that people seem to "crave" chronically, and the more I've noticed and specifically focused on this, the more I've noticed that the "modern" human's surroundings are incredibly flat in what they offer to the senses.

    First of all, forests are constantly permeated with a very soft wash of background noise that is now often absent in the indoor world. The sound of wind through trees has a physiological effect you can FEEL. It's always been a Thing that people are relaxed by white noise, which leads to us being put at ease by the ambient hum of air conditioning units, refrigerators and fans. But now, technology has become much more silent, and it's not at all out of place to hypothesize that environments without "ambient" white noise are detrimental to us.

    Furthermore, a forest's ambience is full of rhythmic and melodic elements, whereas "indoor" sounds are often harsh, flat and irregular.

    Secondly: the crunch. This is actually one of the most notably missing aspects of the indoor sensory world. Humans, when given access to crunchable things, will crunch them. And in a forest, crunchy things are everywhere. Bark, twigs and dry leaves have crisp and brittle qualities that only a few man-made objects have, and they are different with every type of plant and tree.

    Most humans aren't in a lot of contact with things that are "destroyable" either, things you can toy with and tear to little bits in your hands. I think virtually everyone has restlessly torn up a scrap of paper or split a blade of grass with their thumbnail; it's a cliche. And since fidget toys in classrooms are becoming a subject of debate, I think it pays to remember that the vast majority of your ancestors learned everything they knew with a thousand "fidget toys" within arm's reach.

    And there is of course mud, and clay, and dirt, and wet sand. I'm 100% serious, squishing mud and clay is vital to the human brain. Why do you think Play-Doh is such a staple elementary school toy. Why do you think mud is the universal cliche thing kids play in for fun. It's such a common "stim" category for a reason.

    I could go on and on. It's insane how unstimulating most environments humans spend time in are. And this definitely contributes to ecological illiteracy, because people aren't prepared to comprehend how detailed the natural world is. There are dozens of species of fireflies in the United States, and thousands of species of moths. If you don't put herbicides on your lawn, there are likely at least 20 species of plant in a single square meter of it. I've counted at least 15 species of grass alone in my yard.

    Would it be overreach to suggest that some vital perceptive abilities are just not fully developing in today's human? Like. I had to TEACH myself to be able, literally able, to perceive details of living things that were below a certain size, even though my eyes could detect those details, because I just wasn't accustomed to paying attention to things that small. I think something...happens when almost all the objects you interact with daily are human-made.

    The people that think ADHD is caused by kids' brains being exposed to "too much stuff" by Electronic Devices...do not go outside, because spending a few minutes in a natural environment has more stimuli in it than a few hours of That Damn Phone.

    A patch of tree bark the size of my phone's screen has more going on than my phone can display. When you start photographing lots of living organisms, you run into the strange and brain-shifting reality that your electronic device literally cannot create and store images big enough to show everything you, in real life, may notice about that organism.


    This is fascinating! I used to be a big consumer of ASMR videos but I've noticed my desire for them decrease immensely since January.

    Prior to 2022 I was living in a basement apartment, in a suburb, in a large town. In September I moved to the coast, in January I moved into my current apartment with 4 large windows and less than a mile from the ocean.

    In front of my house is a grass patch I've let go and fill up with wild flowers, behind the property I live on it is wooded and generally speaking the weather here is far more tempestuous than it was in my old home.

    Wind is a daily reality and creates so much sensation and noise. Not to mention I go to the beach weekly. Rarely for long and in winter it's too cold to leave my car but the roar of the ocean, the smell of it, the sight, these are all stimulating in a way that no slime or fidget spinner could ever even approach.

    I think op is on to something here and I'd love to see it studied


    robots are no different than cops, don't talk to either.


    if you see stuff like this:

    do NOT answer it!

    questions like these are meant to train the AI to parse the nuance of indirect human speech. i'll spare you the speculative conclusions as to exactly why that's bad but this is just yet more surveillance, do not train their machines


    may I lie to them tho?

    I want to be a bad influence to the robots.


    all information is valuable, even misinformation. it's better to deny them anything tbh


    ^^^ lying on an obvious question will give the AI data on how many people answer wrongly and/or are lying on purpose, which can be used to set tolerances for future AI data collection


    [ID: a tweet by Matt Watson that reads "Feminist women love Eminem". A banner below it asks "Is this a tweet about Eminem?". One button reads "No" and another reads "Yes". end ID]

    The thing about fascists is that they will not only forgive but actively celebrate their leaders for doing any heinous thing; but the moment that one of their leaders appears weak, they will drop him like a hot potato.

    Richard Spencer was a big deal in far right circles right up until he got publicly punched in the face and now he’s nobody. Rush Limbaugh broke down crying on his radio show in the face of his impending death from cancer and he got to spend his last days being called a pussy by people who wouldn’t have careers without him. And all of the people who spent the last 15 years scrawling the URL for InfoWars on every surface are mysteriously MIA now that Alex Jones looks like a fucking clown.

    These people will absolutely turn on each other the moment they catch the slightest whiff of blood in the water, so by all means, make them bleed.