Re: Happy New Year

Eliezer S. Yudkowsky (
Sat, 26 Dec 1998 19:04:40 -0600

Damien Broderick wrote:
> At 03:04 PM 12/25/98 -0600, Eliezer Yudkowsky, Adept of Despair, wrote:
> >It's a time when
> >carols of love and hope deny our true loneliness and despair. It's a
> >time when false smiles and ostentatious declarations of friendship hide
> >the dark pits of fear and hatred that lurk in our souls.
> Aw, don't be like that, Eli. *We're* very fond of you.

So what's wrong with bleak? I _like_ bleak. Nobody does bleak like a Countersphexist, and I'm proud of that. If you choose the right style of literature it's even a marketable job skill. You can take Dynamic Optimism and stuff it into the infinite nothingness that underlies the maze of sorrows you call life.

Incidentally, I should note for the benefit of the humor-impaired people on this list that, no, I am not a nihilist. I can't imagine how a Singularitarian could be. I know exactly why I get up in the morning, thank you. Romanticizing meaninglessness is inconsistent, I wear white, and I don't confuse my neurologically imposed keen with a personal philosophy.

> On a personal note, even though you and I have never met and probably never
> will, and despite the (current) gruesome gap in our ages, I regard you more
> genuinely as a friend than I do most of the people I've been thrown
> together with in the, ahem, real world over the decades.

Isn't it amazing how whatever age we happen to be is "grown-up"? My parents invest a great deal of emotion in the fact that THEY are now adults. My grandparents disagree, of course; only they are really old. Sadly all my great-grandparents passed away a few years ago, but I assume they suffered from the same delusion. My fellow teenagers are all ready to do whatever the hell they feel like and my little sister is a big girl now. If we could understand an infant's gurgles, they would translate to "I'm not an embryo any more and I can spit up on whatever I please."

Humans don't live long enough to grow up. I quite agree with _Deception Well_ that 100 years is minimum voting age.

--         Eliezer S. Yudkowsky

Disclaimer:  Unless otherwise specified, I'm not telling you
everything I think I know.