I have a pattern of breaking myself

I just received a text from a fellow trying to leverage the courses his paid for to become a real estate investor. He’s been attempting to break free from the 9-5 life for almost a decade and he asked me a question.

“What I don’t understand, is why don’t we always do the things that are in our best interest, and none of the things that don’t serve us.”

-Future millionaire friend post the year of our lord 2019

The answer is simple… well simply complicated. This is a broad question and their are very specific answers for very specific patterns of behavior or unserving bad habits. Generalizations are not going to help here.

But that’s not what I wanted to talk about in the first place.

I first asked this when I was maybe thirteen. I thought at the time I was clever and I could figure it out. I was after all a smart boy, educationally bored and problems like this I could dwell on til I had an answer I deemed suitable.

First I made the question simpler

“Why am I doing things that I don’t 100% want to do because I know aspects of them are bad?”

Things like

Why am I teasing my friend for his failed attempt to draw ghastly? Why don’t I answer all the questions on the quiz? Why don’t I like eating vegetables? Why did I steal that thing? Why do I occasionally drop everything and focus everything on one specific aspect of a task like an annual retentive accountant? Why am I thinking dirty thoughts instead of focusing the math homework?

What I understood then was that each of these things that I was doing was in service to a need that I had but not all my needs as a person. Stealing got me the object of my desire but left me with guilt becuase god says it’s wrong so now I feel bad. Bee tea dubs stealing is wrong unless its inspiration or art or method.

So this is when I broke myself apart to figure out why half of me could be fore something and half could be against it. Or in some cases how twenty percent could take control and do it anyways.

I took the general motivations I as best as I understood them and created a council room within my mind for them to meet and discuss the business of life. I sit as always at the head to my left sits the first chair but all chairs are equal. (This bugs me that even as a child with no knowledge of military seating etiquette. I managed to solve the problem of having a rectangular board room table but distance from the head of the table did not create an implicit rank between the board members. By leaving the chair on my right side empty for guests every member present was equally separated and not therefore equal in voice, votes, and authority though a standard meeting starts from left and ends on the empty or guest chair.)

Well, the first chair sits myself in a leather jacket, long rebellious hair, and a quite curt demeanor. He is in change with aspects of myself that pertain to image, social influence, status, reputation. Basically the Fonz of my brain letting me know how a given course of action will affect me socially. The public relations officer if you will.

Then to his left sits myself rather thinner wearing glasses, a lab coat, a short unkempt but regularly trimmed haircut. His role is to simply tell me the odds of success, cost benefit analysis, and general inquiries needed to raise the quality of data available for future decisions or more accurate predictions. This is the head of my R&D division.

To his left, and at the tail of the table, sits myself bearded in robes with a funny hat and fluctuating religious adornments. Sometimes deacon-like color schemes or wearing a Buddhistic piety cut. His appearance is never static. His role is guide me morally, ethically, and righteously through life as any spiritual advisor would. His arguments come largely from christian teachings but he will incorporate all other available religious teachings as well. Unfortunate Corporations don’t have souls and therefore moral guidance does not have a seat or position within a company’s board room. So there is no corporate equivalent job title but as far as a military command he would literally by the Chaplin.

To his left, now ascending the right hand side of the table. Sits myself in full military regalia, a five star general, military fade cut weekly, the most muscular build of myself, as well as the rudest. He speaks for authority, discipline, and how to concisely achieve victory. The chief of operations or COO would be the corporate equivalent. General Order is about stratagem, resources, and whether or not a course of action is lawful.

To his left is my penis, an unimaginative representation of myself wearing a mushroom capped flesh toned German M35 steel helmet. Yeah I was going through puberty at the time and providing representation to the hormonal screams of my body was and still is important. Otherwise ignoring his thought process leads to unexpected outcomes when shareholders vote over a given course of action. Because he is a strong shareholder within the boardroom of my brain. Suffice it to say his advice will often be “Fuck it!” or “Fuck it hard!” or “Fuck it gently.” or the classic “I don’t give a fuck.”

Then there sits an empty chair and beyond that at the head of the table sits myself, without body.

This helped me discover a few of the reasons why I did things that I shouldn’t be.

Why did I steal that?

Because now you have another item that adds to your social status. It’s what’s cool

It was very likely to succeed. I saw no cause to raise the alarm.

I was out voted. Don’t steal.

While success was likely the consequences of a failed attempt would have been disaster. Don’t do that again without first consulting us.

Nice. Fuck that guy am I right.

Well there you have it a peak behind the framework that I use to deliberate future courses of action when I have time to internally debate whether or not any idea is a good idea or bad one.

Did this solve the ever present problem of long-term self destructive behavior. NO, each behavior must be analyzed and dealt with individuality. There is not blanket cure-all one pill solution to apply.

Much Love,

HngyHngyHppo

Never accept Responsibility without Authority!

I learned this lesson ages ago. I was a lifeguard for a popular water park. I held a position of responsibility for the safety of guest, was a face that represented the park and helped shape the guests experience.

It was a great responsibility. During my two summers I “rescued” a small child and an elderly man whose panic had kept them under water and in danger. But the average day was entirely uneventful and that was a blessing.

However, their existed a class of guests referred to as “season passers”. Some parents rather than have their kids be bored for summer or send them away to camp purchased season passes for their kids who would come to the park once or twice a week, more if the children wanted to master the wave machine (a boogeyboard surf jet). Since the life guards and other staff saw these faces so often, we knew amongst ourselves who was trouble and who wasn’t.

But we only had the illusion of authority.

If the rules were broken, exiting a tube early, cutting in lines, raft stashing, or harassing/taunting life guards who can’t leave their station. Our only course of action would be to blow our whistles and hope that they stopped. But doing so raises awareness of the other guests who are busy enjoying their day at the park. If we wanted to eject someone from the park, the offense must have been bad but also and most importantly the offending party must be 100% compliant and freely agreed to standby the lifeguards station ’til our roving position could come to the station and escort the guests to leave. But if they ran… then they were gone forever. Stories were common they waited for ten minutes then just walked away and I couldn’t leave my station so UGH!.

This is responsibility without authority.

As a lifeguard we had the authority to execute the primary responsibility of guest safety. “No, I’m sorry your to short to ride this buddy.” “Excuse me I’m going to have to ask that you gentlemen leave before I have security escort you out.” or we could jump into the water and “rescue” a 4 foot tall child who doesn’t realize the water is 3 feet deep. We had that authority.

We also had the responsibility to enforce the rules. The rules ain’t there to ruin peoples fun, some of the rides can be dangerous if you are out of your tube and you could hurt yourself or others. Most injuries result from breaking the rules or running carelessly. Climbing and diving from a feature that was aesthetic and not for diving.

Which is why in my second year I taught the new generation, to recognize the season passers and to turn a blind eye to their antics. Because rules or broken in inches, every time a season passer gets away with breaking a rule because the life guard didn’t see it. They assume that if they had been called out it would have meant trouble.

BUT what was important to teach the lifeguards was that if a season passer was called out on a minor rule violation and they realized that “hey the lifeguard can’t leave. I’ll be out of the park and back tomorrow they won’t even remember what I did if they are here too.” leads to major rules violations because now they know for certain their is no penalty for breaking the rules. It’s better to let them think they are getting away with something rather than to expose the truth that they could get away with everything.

Because eventually the summer would end and if they were breaking the rules by inches then hopefully they won’t have caused harm to themselves or others. But if they broke the rules by miles, someone would get hurt.

I knew then that I could not in the future accept a responsibility without the authority to make sure it happens.

Ask yourself do you have the authority to enforce the responsibilities you’ve taken.

Are you responsible for hiring candidates? Do you have the authority to negotiate pay scales?

Are you responsible for meeting the overnight’s production schedule? Do you have the authority to hire staff and use company resources?

Are you responsible for leading a team of sailors through an extended maintenance period on the ship’s diesel engine? Is it within your authority to use command resources to incentivize complaince or dole out reprimands for non compliance? No, the answer is almost always no. The military does have the threat of Non-Judaical punishment but that is extremely rare. No, the military gets things done in a similar fashion to the free world, based on the illusion of authority not it’s actual existence.

It is America’s respect for the illusion of authority that is the root answer as to why drivers in America follow the rules of the road and stop at red lights. I hope we never lose that respect. But I hope you go into the future with the knowledge that if you accept a responsibility without the authority than your as effective as a goat being lead to the alter tasked with making the rain. Either you get lucky and it rains before your burnt or you don’t and are offered up as an appeasement sacrifice.

Much love,

HngyHngyHppo

How to do a Lyrical Breakdown

What is “Bad Guy” by Billie Eilish about?

That is what the thorn I was going to remove from my brain today but..

But while crafting that analysis and researching if anyone else has already created such a work, the reality that no one one the first three pages of google has anywhere near a decent analysis is a far greater thorn.

If you don’t understand the language of a song

then you are listening to this song

and if that is the case all you should concern yourself with is the mathematical patterns in the harmonics… the deviations in the scale and the chords used… phonetically you can ignore the lyrics

but if you think in the same language as the song be it Thai, Portuguese, Pigeon, or Engrish

then listening to that song whether you are actively paying attention or passively distracted is almost the same as having those lyrics as your own thoughts.

This is why lyrical analysis’s are important. If you don’t think in the language of the music then the song is gibberish

But if you do…

And you want to ask someone what these thoughts mean…

That is not an unreasonable request.

As with any Art there will always be at least three meanings.

The first is the Author’s intent

This song is about taking power in a relationship

The second is the Listener’s personal interpretation (in this case mine)

This is a song about sexual abuse and the victim trying to take control of their victimization by trying to convince themselves that they wanted it. While struggling with the shame of being both a victim of the abuse and being socially punished for attracting such abuse.

Then there is the general interpretation

using as much data as is possible what does this song mean to a typical Gen Z, Millennial, or the population at large. What culturally relevant shared experiences do these demographics have that would frame the piece of music in question?

This is the type of breakdown I was going to do…

I’m not because it bothers me more that either no one knows how to do this type of breakdown

and no one even bothered to even give out there own personal interpretation.

Because if I had a few Gen Z’er’s personal interpretation and a few Millennial interpretations plus the Artist’s intent then a general interpretation would be relatively easy for me to triangulate.

SO FINALLY

here is how you analysis a song with your personal interpretation

First let the audience know what the Artist’s intent was. This will build credibility for the argument that your personal interpretation is the correct one.

Now present your interpretation

“Bad Guy” is about the singer pretending to be meek and girly in order to attract strong men who have fragile ego’s and can’t handle a real powerful woman.

Then using the lyric’s provide evidence for your position.

If you are actually and objectively trying to answer the Question

What is “Bad Guy” by Billie Eilish about?

Then you will need to provide as many frames of reference as possible.

Gen X will see this song very differently than Gen Z

and then explain what it would mean to them and why

Gen X many of them might remember listening to Aqua’s “barbie girl” for the first time at their child’s birthday party and being horrified to hear their child singing along.

Baby Boomer’s haven’t heard this song

Millennial’s have an awkward position

and Gen Z likely knows about the Artist’s other works and how her process is not just herself but she comes from a musical family… which has impacted the shaping of her lyrics significantly. Billie Eilish is a master of her vocal craft but the source of her lyrics is highly collaborative.

that is the type of analysis I wanted to write but limited on the resource of time.

This is all I can offer at this point.

I tell you what though

If this post gets 100 likes before the end of August 2019

I will carve out the estimated 8-10 hours to do a proper analysis on

What is “Bad Guy” by Billie Eilish about?

Or leave a comment asking for an analysis of any song in the Engrish language and the first to get 10 likes I will give my personal interpretation on.

With Love,

Hngyhngyhppo

Why I’m using Acts instead of Chapters

A typical 300 page or 80k+word novel will have anywhere between 30 and 60 chapters that cover the typical beats of a 3 act story structure.

Now there is nothing wrong with this. This is fine and I’m sure plotters get a lot of use out of it. But I’m a pantser and I’m writing pulp

My novellas follow a 5 act structure to cover the 40k word count or 150 pages.

Each act should be a self contained pulp fantasy western story

Conflict introduced – Conflict resolved

Act 1

The Duke and The Dragon

Mouse is a hired gun for the Duke’s hunting party

The hunt is Dangerous

Mouse fights wolves

The Duke hunts falcons from inside the safety his hired and loyal men create

Conflict introduced

Mouse and the men risk there lives to protect the duke who doesn’t come close to danger. But the duke’s personal bard sings of the duke’s heroism and skill in hunting and the men who haven’t faced danger cheer the story

Conflict resolved

Mouse and the men have a private meeting with the duke where he learns more about them and their pasts, their families, and shows that he actually cares about the men under his command both the temporary hired and the loyal men from the kingdom

Act 2

Conflict introduced

Mouse and the men need a plan to hunt a specific bull of the duke’s choosing but they don’t know which bull the duke will want to hunt

Conflict resolved

They “red team” each others plans and come up with a plan for each of the wild herds prize bulls

and the hunt starts

Act 3

Conflict introduced

The duke has trouble with ladies and Mouse offers him bad advice (get really drunk)

Conflict resolved

The duke becomes so drunk that he almost challenges Mouse to a duel. Which if he lost Mouse would become the Duke of Rose-Scent…

So the duke’s tutor casts a magic spell to distract the duke.

She creates an illusion in the sky to make a thunder cloud look like a dragon. The duke passes out before he can finish his challenge.

Act 4

Conflict introduced

The duke says he had a prophetic dream last night that they will meet a dragon in less than three weeks and he offers extra gold to any of the hired guns willing to stay. After testing the duke’s memory of last night, Mouse thinks that this is clearly the duke misunderstanding the magic from last night and there is no dragon.

Conflict resolved

As they march north it becomes clear that there is a strong magic caster killing virgins. They are attacked by a flame avatar of a dragon. There might be a dragon involved…

Act 5

Conflict introduced

Yes there is a dragon

Conflict resolved

Yes they fight a dragon

In the Duke and the Dragon

This final climax is the hunting of a dragon. But it is not the focus of the any Act except Act 5. Act 1 is an introduction to the dangers of the Freeland and the Duke’s hunt. Act 2 shows how Mouse navigates as a scout and a ladies man. Act 3 is where the story turns from Mouse being competent to Mouse losing and the final conflict is spelled out for the reader. Act 4 is resolution of logistics necessary for the final conflict as well as a minor conflict that feeds into the climax. Act 5 uses as many tools from the previous acts to bring about a satisfying resolution to the novella.

Each act consists of as many scenes either written in traditional format or in vignettes as is necessary to give a successful resolution to the introduced conflict.

Because this is a western I do not linger on descriptions or world-building. If a scene does not contain conflict-resolution then it will be rather short.

The best part about this structure it’s really easy for me as a pantser to use and create a constant quality novella. Each Act is roughly 8k words of minor conflicts and resolutions one major.

Act 1 introduction

Act 2 Rising confidence (the readers confidence in Mouse)

Act 3 The Turn (The Final conflict is revealed)

Act 4 Regaining competence (Mouse adapts and prepares to face the conflict)

Act 5 Climax conclusion

If this was a wonder women comic

Act 1

This is wonder woman (introduction)

Act 2

See how she beats up a bad guy (readers gain confidence)

Act 3

Oh No! She has been tied up (readers worry)

Act 4

She hears the evil plan (readers regain confidence and are excited about the resolution)

Act 5

She could have escaped the whole time.. She saves the day (hurray)

that’s what I have to say about that,

With love,

Hngyhngyhppo

How to make something quotable…

The worst thorns are the ones that spring from my imagination and the roses.

-Hppo

I, and you, need a quick guide to creating quotes. But that resource didn’t exist. So I’ll make it myself.

This article will be laid out as follows. First the types of quotes and how they are used for social credit. Second getting your quote properly attributed to you because “anonymous” is not going to drive any traffic your way.

Types of quotes

  1. Asides

  2. Heart strings

  3. Pith/wit

  4. Truism

  5. Guiding

  6. Intelligence

  7. Context

Asides – are the “family guy” type quotes.

Come on. Let’s go. Fox is running one of those new reality shows at 8:00. Fast animals, Slow children.”

  • Peter Griffen

or one of the many

“That reminds me of the time ____” type format

Asides are typically self contained jokes or references that require no context or attribution. The users of these quotes have a handful of these loaded in their brains like bullets to fire whenever the situation is primed for it. The quoter is attempting to score social points by whipping on of these out because if the audience does not no the source material then the quoter gets credit for wit. If the audience knows and enjoys the source material then the quoter gets points for being “hip”, “fleek”, “relevant”, or whatever jargon best describes being “in on it”.

For quoters – Their is a danger of use these types of quotes to often, one quote to many times, or one source of these quotes. Like yesteryear’s fashion you need to stay up to date and keep changing out your handful of quotes to stay relevant.

For writers – These quotes have a short shelf life and by nature they will not drive traffic to you. Because the quoter is not trying to make an “appeal to authority” but instead gain social currency.

Heart Strings- are quick to hit the emotional core of a person

“Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?”

  • Shakespeare (Sonnet 18)

“Every puppy should have a boy.”

  • Erma Bombeck

“You shall not pass!”

-Gandolf the grey

Heart string quotes do not need to be self contained like asides. These quotes are best received when the source reference is understood and the more points if the source reference was enjoyed. These types of can be repurposed for humor, wit, or a show of intelligence but the reason they have stuck in the mind of a quoter and his audience’s mind is because they pull at the heart strings.

For quoters – these types of quotes will be good in all seasons. You’ll get double points for using the quote for the scenario it was originally intended. But re-purposing the quote for humor or for helping an argument through an appeal to authority will still gain social currency.

For writers – These quotes need a lot of space, time, and care in creating. In LOTR there are very few lines of dialogue surrounding. In sonnet 18 this line sums up the whole poem. And the Erma quote can perform in a vacuum but plays more on the memories and feelings that the audience brings into the work … rather than having to craft an original emotional arc for the audience to experience.

Pith/wit quotes are just that a display by the quoter that they are witty.

“To be or not to be…”

Hamlet

“And now for something completely different”

-John Cleese

“The internet is just a world passing notes in a classroom.”

-Jon Stewart

These like Asides are self contained but the are based in a higher form of humor than brass and self-evident jokes. The quoters are using these for the purpose of making a joke but also to gain intelligence points on their social score card.

For quoters – If you find that your pith quotes are not landing because the audience does not have the same background experience to enjoy a python or daily show reference. Then attribution before the quote will help it land.

For writers – These quotes typically become quotable because they have been repeated so many times. For instance the Hamlet quote is Pith and not Intelligence because it is well understood that the quoter has not read, watched, or understood the play from which it is pulled. The same may be true for the python-ism.

Truisms – are true enough and sum up complex situations into something short and concise.

“Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.”

-Mike Tyson

“Against logic there is no armor like ignorance.”

-Laurence J. Peter

“You don’t get to choose not to pay a price, you only get to choose which price you pay.”

-Jordan B. Peterson

A good truism is concise and does not need any context surrounding it other than the audiences own life experience. These are supported by empirical evidence alone.

For quoters – These quotes will help in gaining “wisdom” points.

For writers – These quotes are often stolen, repurposed or wrongly attributed. So in your journey I hope you can be content with your truism being blatantly stolen because someone else has far more social credit or fame or authority than you. But if you have to steal a truism, go ahead you have my permission, for no one person can own the truth.

Guiding quotes

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I —

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.”

-Robert Frost

“Ours is not to question why, ours is to do and die.”

-Alfred Lord Tennyson

“What would Jesus do?”

-Charles Spurgeon

“WWJD” modernized

“Write like a Mother Fucker.”
Cheryl Strayed

I’ve provided three examples all in a similar vain as to guiding one’s actions. These quotes can also be labeled “Inspirational”,”Motivational”, etc, etc. They exist because they help people make decisions or take action. People remember these quotes not because they are well written self contained but because it is a piece of advice that they would like to give themselves or others in the future.

For quoters – These quotes are great to short hand the decision process behind making a choice. Knowing your audience is important to have these quotes land. Don’t need to ask an atheist what would Jesus do or tell a rebel not to ask why. These quotes when used properly will can you the “wisdom” perk among you social crowd. And they are useful for giving advice while distancing yourself from both the impact of the advice itself and ire from if the advice is received poorly.

-If you are using these quotes but you are no longer finding that they actually have an impact on decisions you make you need to scuttle them and replace them with qoutes that do. Or you may find that you’ve become a Preacher who does not Practice.

For writers – These stay in your audiences mind because they are concise, they contain truism, and they have found them useful.

Intelligence quotes are for blowing your own horn. Making an argument from authority or for demonstrating that you are well read, well informed, and thus intelligent.

“The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read.”

-Mark Twain

“If men learn this, it will implant forgetfulness in their souls…”

-Socrates on the written word

These quotes become quotes because the source of the quote is considered intelligent and therefore the quoter is correlating their own intelligence to the intelligence of the source.

For quoters – These quotes only gain social credit during small talk. Any conversation or relationship longer than thirty minutes these quotes can actually detract from your intelligence score in the mind of your audience. Because the audience knows what your intelligence level is and over use of these types of quotes only shows that you have not made your own decisions but instead are only swayed by authorities.

For writers – Once you have gained fame associated with intelligence than your words will be taken as quotes of intelligence.

Context- carry the full weight of the source behind the quote.

“One does not simply walk into Mordor.”

-Lord of the Rings

“We’re not in Kansas anymore”

-Wizard of Oz

“D’oh”

-The Simpsons

These quotes are a concise summary of the source material and are applicable in many situations to score social credits.

For quoters – These are great as long as the reference is shared and the situation calls for the quote.

For writers – These are chosen by the audience and any attempt to craft one of these as a quote will make it bland/blunt and without the nuance that it needs to have a life cycle as a quote.

Now that you understand some of the types of quotes here are some tips for getting your quotes properly attributed.

First repetition. “As I’ve said before … [quote]”, “I’ve remarked … [quote]”, “I’ve always thought … [quote]”

Second using them for promotional taglines.

“In a world…”

-Movie trailer guy

Third false attribution these will make you seem humble as well. Say someone else with greater credentials or expertise came up with the quote. If your called out then take credit.

“Well I guess it’s mine now..”

Last understand the audience that is likely to quote you. You need to first be an authority so when they make the argument with an appeal to authority that you are cited. Second be really famous then attribution is not required as the quoter and their audience both know you are the source.