November 19, 2012

Why 2012 Doomsday Theories Are Bullshit

By now I'm sure you know that the Mayan calendar ends on December 21st, 2012, and that this means the ancient civilization had mystical knowledge that the world would end on that date. There's even a movie about it. You should also know that this is complete bullshit, just like all of the apocalyptic prophecies of 1999 (and every other year ever). I'm sorry to inform you that the world is not ending. It probably should, but it isn't.

And now, in case you were clinging to a far-fetched belief that the Mayans knew something that we don't, there is proof that even the Mayans didn't believe the world would end in 2012. Newly discovered calendars show that the Mayans expected the world to keep turning for a very, very long time.

"The Mayan calendar is going to keep going for billions, trillions, octillions of years into the future," says David Stuart, an archaeologist from the University of Texas, who worked to decipher glyphs discovered two years ago. "Numbers we can't even wrap our heads around."

The newly discovered calendars date back to a few hundred years before the Dresden Codex, the 11th or 12th century book from which came our previous understanding of the Mayan calendar. They're painted on the wall of a room that had been filled in and was only discovered because looters tried to ransack it. Usually paint doesn't last long in the Guatemalan rain forest's tropical climate, but preserved on this room's walls were colorful murals and the calendar.

The calendar seemed to be on the wall to help scholars get the info they needed without going through books. "It's kind of like having a whiteboard in your office where you're writing down formulas that you want to remember," Stuart said.

The 2012 doomsday predictions were based on previous calendars, which ended after 13 baktuns (periods of about 400 years). This one has 17 baktuns, and notations for larger calculations of time beyond that.

Like most superstitious beliefs, this was a result of lack of information.

The city of Xultan, where the murals and calendars were found, was discovered in 1915, but only a small fraction of it has been explored. Imagine what other secrets (and myth-busting information) the ruins may house.

November 14, 2012

This Week Has Been A Nightmare

I have had a terrible cold the last few days. It started on Monday with a light cough, but by yesterday morning I was bed ridden. Last night I was too sick to even sleep, and just wanted someone to put me out of my misery. Today was bad as well, so I hope tomorrow will be better.

This is my first sickness of the year, but I was ill probably four or five times last winter. Before that, I don't think I got sick five times in a decade. My lifestyle must need some work.

November 9, 2012

Contentment

There is nothing more peaceful and relaxing than watching my lovely lady as she sleeps next to me.

The Beatles and Drugs

One of the more interesting interviews of the Beatles about drug use.

November 8, 2012

Shopping Time

It's that time of year again. Time to start making Christmas shopping lists and getting ready for the holidays.

We're working on our third annual Holiday Gift Guide on VentureBreak, where we recommend various gift-worthy products throughout the holiday season. Check it out if you need some inspiration or advice for making your list this year.

I'll probably put up my tree this weekend or next, and I think I'll decorate the front of my house for the first time in a good five years.

Here it comes, everybody, ready or not.

November 5, 2012

Is Sex Dying?

Our culture is sexually confused.

Anal sex is more popular than ever, sex shops are reporting massive increases in the sale of nipple clamps, and the average age a boy is exposed to pornography is 14. Sexy stuff, huh? On the other hand, a 2011 article published by Psychology Today concluded that the use of Internet pornography is breeding a generation of men who cannout be aroused by their actual, real-life partners, and that "many are becoming convinced that [erectile dysfunction] at twenty-something is normal." Not so sexy.

We're talking more and more openly about sex, and we're happily exposed to every sexy part of the human body that can be used to sell us beer, cars, and deodorant—but sex itself seems to be becoming less and less fun. Only 64% of women report having an orgasm in their last sexual encounter (despite 85% of men thinking their partner had an orgasm), and a recent survey showed that 63% of women would rather "do something else" than have sex with their husbands, with watching a movie being the most popular alternative.

As a society, we can't make up our minds between getting our freak on and collapsing in bed, bored and dissatisfied.

Is sex dying?

November 1, 2012

Why No One Shuts Up

Perhaps this is why we have the fanatic urge to post every emotional experience we have on Facebook, to instagram every sunset, to tweet every meaningful quote, to constantly avoid simply being, simply experiencing things, but forever outsourcing life to a realm in which in can be validated by others, and — most importantly — talked about, for in our heart of modern hearts we are not certain that our lives have value in and of themselves.
A great quote from Marc, a young Catholic blogger for the blog "Bad Catholic." It's from a very interesting explanation of why we strive for connection in all areas of life, even intimacy.

Read the rest here.