A small rant, sort of…

For long time readers, this may come as a shock because I’m going to try and briefly set aside my usual “if you don’t have something positive to say, don’t say anything at all” point of view.

I’m feeling a little bad already and I haven’t even written anything yet. It’s because I’ve been thrilled with almost every new addition to TSTO. It’s almost like EA have been reading my mind (or something like that).

Yeah, then there’s the fact that lots of Tappers don’t have the donuts to spare and it really was thoughtful for those folks to receive a free premium item.

Plus it’s also sends out a nice message that good things do come to those who are patient. “Patience Grasshopper”, has always been my motto!

So what was I going to rant about, oh yeah – I paid donuts for the Wailing Wall! Now I have two. My town’s design theme is like me and is reflected clearly in this blog’s tag line ‘Nothing Special…’ I only want one of everything ~ not two! Except maybe for items that I use for fun… for instance, over at Tapped-Out UK some of us hide rabbit hedges around our towns for our neighbor-eenos to find in a game called SUBS.

So okay, now I feel completely petty and selfish but that’s not a bad thing IMHO. Because it shows me that I’m grown-up enough be able recognize the nature of these (or almost any other) feelings

Thank you Zen!
😦 😐 🙂 😀

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The Simpsons Tapped Out and Epistemology

Does EA read fan-sites? Who knows. Moving right along… Professor Frink’s ‘Have an Epistemological Argument with Ghosts’ task speaks directly to me though, so-to-speak.

DrewDabble has been around the ‘TSTO Online Block’  (and only as DD BTW*) more than a few times 😉  Been striving to participate in friendly blogging and commentary around the TSTO Global Community for a long time now (at least in Internet viral terms) before a certain TSTO mega-blog ‘changed directions’. Enough said (maybe**) about that bygone era.

Okay, now back on-topic: I’m into Epistemology. No really… Sez-so right here. Since May 9, 2013. Don’t see it? Then ‘Look Closer’ whatever that means. 

TSTO and Epistemologyand DreDabble

So okay, when I went to grab the above screenshot before starting my #1 TSTO Hero – Professor Frink (my discoverer – not avatar***) on a most auspicious task – this scene was pretty much right there. No waiting. No editing. Just cropped it. Honest. Please draw & appreciate your own meanings (to yourselves) and know they are ALL precious to DrewDabble 😐 🙂 😀

*  **  *** will be add here ASAP. Not teasing just gotta get ready because Treehouse of Horror XXIV. It’s airing in 40 minutes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Zen and the Art of Growing Perfection

This blog was originated to share insight from a decade of studying Zen. Then I got hooked on The Simpsons Tapped Out. Months have gone by and it may seem as though I’ve abandoned this topic. Not at all; in fact TSTO has noticeably deepened my Zen practice.

And now that the Halloween 2013 event has arrived, it’s also given me flashbacks to the chaotic state of my mind before the study & practice of Zen. It was not unlike (metaphorically) what I find when I open my game after being away for a few hours. What I’m trying to express is just how constantly ‘busy’ (and on so many levels) our human minds are. Meditation is a valuable tool that can help one gain insight into this ‘ceaseless mental busy-ness’.

There are many types of meditation with varying goals. My goal is not to achieve a blissful place which to escape. That’s a long, long way off for me 😉 The best I can claim, after ten years, is I can sometimes slow my mind down enough to unemotionally ‘see’ my thoughts as they originate, or soon thereafter… no matter what’s occurring around my physical being.

TSTO actually contains a wonderful mediation tool and it’s been enhanced by the Halloween event… How long is 45 seconds? How many thoughts does a human mind generate in that time? A good way to find out for yourself is to stay totally focused while Growing Perfection at Cletus’ Farm. Really try to concentrate your mind and not think about anything else (at all) for those 45 seconds; no matter how many ghosts, gremlins or favorite game characters come into view. Or real-world noises around you from people, phones, music TVs, birds chirping  – no distractions whatsoever.

Now do that 10 times in a row staying totally focused without letting a single crop rot… Congratulations Tappers 🙂 you just meditated for seven and a half minutes!
Zen and The Art of Growing Perfection

What are geeks and what do they have to do with icy couches?

Please note (as if anybody besides me will ever read this)…  At least until I’ve explored this topic to my satisfaction, everything I write in this blog is (more or less) striving towards a deeper understanding of this “icy couch” notion that I’ve been trying to get my head around for over a decade, thanks in large part to insightful books by Hubert Benoit and CJ Beck.

What is a geek? Over the past couple of decades, it’s a word that’s become generically associated with people that are good at working with computers (aka information technology). Actually that’s the best possible connotation of the word. Other meanings (depending on one’s point of view) are somewhat less flattering.

A quick Google search yields two definitions for “geek”:

  1. An unfashionable or socially inept person.
  2. A person with an eccentric devotion to a particular interest: “a computer geek”.

Big surprise, I work in information technology. When my clients call me “their computer geek”, I wear it like a badge of pride. This is not resting on the icy couch. Most things involving positive feelings of pride are warm and fuzzy… the very opposite of icy couch.

Here comes some icy couch… I’m so socially “awkward” (“inept” is a bit of an overstatement in my particular case) it’s amazing I even have any clients. It seems the very thing that makes me good at my profession also turns out to be a fairly serious character flaw. Yeah, how’s this for a professional tagline: “If you can tolerate being around me, I can most definitely help you with your IT needs”.  Not a warm and fuzzy thought to have about one’s self.  In fact, it’s cold and hard like (drumroll please) an icy couch.

Icy couch is not morbid or fatalistic. It’s not grim or negative, at all. It is simply accepting that the human mind generates an endless stream of both comfortable and unconformable thoughts (emotions, feelings, whatever you call them). Most contemporary western mindsets try to minimize (if not, completely eliminate) the unconformable aspect. Maybe it’s just human nature. I, personally, have spent several insight-less decades trying my best to ignore anything that takes me outside of my psychological comfort-zone.

I consider it most fortunate to have become aware of the benefits of being able to restfully “stay with” thoughts that would otherwise leave my mind very agitated and upset.

This is a good place to stop. Maybe in the next post I’ll pick up with what I mean by “stay with”.

UPDATE – 8/12/2013: The third post on blog this was going to be about the notion of  ‘stay with’. In the mean time The Simpsons Tapped Out game blissfully ruined my life. I will be posting a lot more on what I call ‘Geek/Zen’.