Have the machine elves abducted me and made me their slave? Not exactly...
Since TAM 2014, I have been essentially living out of a suitcase, with little in the way of internet access outside of my phone. In September, I outright bought a similar car to my previous one, and in November I got my belongings out of storage and into an office -- only to find that they were not all there.
` Still, life is slowly improving, as I've actually been paid for some of my writing, and I look forward to being paid for more. Even both of my cats have a place to live! I, still, do not have my own place, although I no longer live with six messed-up roommates, and keep well away from my abusive ex as much as I can.
Although there are many varied posts in 'draft' form on this blog, I've mostly been publishing ones about psychedelics for a while, for various reasons:
Shortly after TAM 2012, I started learning how the mind and brain can be warped with hypnosis and psychedelics, and also their relationship to woo and religion. Fascinating stuff.
` I also learned how people in this culture have been purposely brainwashed by the government to dismiss psychedelics, as well as marijuana, in spite of scientific findings.
It's like a skeptical smorgasboard!
At TAM 2013, I actually talked about writing about psychedelics with Michael Shermer, who said it would be a great topic for me to write about for Skeptic Magazine. Although other articles about psychedelics and 'the war on drugs' have appeared in Skeptic, none of them have been by me.
That's mostly because my life was becoming more and more of a living hell as the person I was living with and taking care of became more paranoid, narcissistic, gaslighting, frightening -- well, he almost killed me with his utter neediness and crazy-making.
` I'm almost ashamed to admit, but he convinced me into thinking that my desire to write meant that there was something wrong with me, and that I had some kind of 'glued to the screen' addiction because of it.
` (If that is so, then Dr. Karl has such an addiction far worse than I, and he told me this at TAM 2014!)
I've written about my situation a few times on my blog during this time, just to tell people that I'm still interested in writing about intellectually-challenging topics, but was under the sleep deprived spell of a dying control freak who was being denied the healthcare that he desperately needed.
` Instead, it was my job to take care of him and drive him to the ER a lot, and take the blame for problems of his that I did not cause. And if I didn't like it, then I was just 'trying to kill him', and no, don't tell anyone else because they don't know the truth, blah blah blah...
I knew it was wrong to stay, especially since it kept tearing away all the progress I was making in breaking out of three decades of PTSD-causing narcissistic and institutional abuse, torture, etc., but I didn't want to let him die.
` Since it's resulted in permanent nerve damage in my face, and another couple of years of my life wasted, I actually regret not just walking out the door and letting him die of starvation. Or at least dumping him at a hospital before leaving and telling them that he will die if they kick him out.
During the same time span since 2012, I was listening to back-episodes of the Geologic Podcast, which I found to be inspirational to my own podcast -- yes, it is possible to attract an audience with entertainment, music, shlock and silliness! I like. It was a welcome distraction of sanity while I was trying to keep my brain functioning at least slightly.
In many of these episodes, I was shocked at the condescending nature of Geo's comments about all 'drugs', including psychedelics. He even essentially said that LSD made the Beatles' Sargent Pepper album, and other psychedelically inspired works, worse than they could have been.
` This is someone who should know better than to spread propaganda -- on his skeptical podcast!! -- although I didn't think it was worth telling him unless I knew just what to say.
Starting about a year ago, during a particularly rough time, I felt the need to write on my blog, but didn't have the brainpower or internet power to write blog posts that required frontal lobes to understand. So, I wrote emails to people, including Geo, which I've described a while back.
It wasn't until last spring and summer that for whatever reason I became so offended by Geo's misguided and inaccurate remarks that I sought to educate him on the subject. After all, he is misinforming his audience.
So, I wrote him some emails about psychedelics. It doesn't seem as though he's read them, but I thought they were good enough to fix up and post on my blog, and that's what became Parts 1-3 of The Ultimate Skeptic's Head trip (starting here).
` Based on the responses I've gotten, it's apparently possible for some skeptics to appreciate what I've written and become interested in the subject themselves. It was only then that I revealed who the emails were to.
I've also added a Part 4, which was a conglomeration of material from various sources that all sort of fit into the same blog post -- although it was a tight squeeze. I figured that was enough psychedelic material for now, but have since changed my mind:
Last month, Geo made some dismissive comments about ayahuasca on his show, which inspired me to finally write that article I've been meaning to write for Skeptic Magazine. I think I understand my angle now.
Without my own internet access, this is difficult, but in order to help myself break out of the rut I'm in, I set out to develop my inspiration by writing him another email. Then I realized that this was probably a mistake, so I figured it would be better-received if I posted it straight to my blog.
That will be my next post -- which you can now read here. And the one after that will, mercifully, be on another topic -- this time, the facts and fallacies of hypnosis.