Snowy Owl Barrow AlaskaWorlds O Wisdom (WOW) provides unique information on meaningful action: what to do, why, how, when and where, how much, and above all: who. (Or, as Wally Wowl would say: Hoo!)
What is WOW? It is a community of people who care about experience, and who want to explore values. What should one do? Why? In which conditions? We get together in order to answer these and other questions. Current WOWs include CodeWOW and LifeWOW and TaleWOW.

Pushing Ahead!

Submitted by eagle on Thu, 10/07/2021 - 13:51

That coffee look! :)

Positive, alert, maybe a little crazy! :)

Human systems. Wanting; having or not having what we want.

I guess we can go out there to make what we want, instead of expecting it.

Supposedly they're going to cut the water to the town for two weeks to a month. As if it weren't annoying enough not to have water every other day or so. I'm not sure that I have enough water reserves for even a few days!

Exciting to work on some new projects! :)

Also looking for more! :)

Eagle Gamma

Annoyances & Notes

Submitted by eagle on Mon, 09/27/2021 - 15:24

See the injuries as part of the adventures! :)

Other mishaps, too.

The failures, disappointments, mistakes… scars to remember the lessons!

Just remember to survive! :)


Why are all my coffee and chocolate photos so blurry? :)

Goals are within reach, if you stretch! :)

We are all phosphates. The green revolution has made people bigger.

Relying on our moral instincts is like asking a caveman what to do.

Received a letter from one of the French banks I applied to. They refused to open the bank account, due to lack of the proper documents in France, which I already knew from e-mail. The letter however indicated that people residing in France have a right to an account. Even if banks refuse to open an account, apparently you can have the refusing bank go to their national bank to open an account. I asked that they do so, we'll see how this goes.

We probably have some dinosaur DNA in us! :)

We're sort of like advanced bacterial colonies.

We have powerful genes within us, which make us have certain feelings, thoughts, beliefs, desires.

We can succumb to social pressures, or we can live up to who we are.

I think we should notice more of our underlying mechanical selves and environments.

To achieve our goals, we have to know our goals. We can choose some of our goals. We also have considerable goals programmed within us, deeply.

Respecting our bodies.

It's also important to find a society and a geography that matches with one's body.

We're just finding out what our bodies can do through DNA and other science!

The ideas evolve in our heads.

Weird & funny that we can fit so much capacity to travel or do cool things in a few feet of flesh and bone.

The stresses are part of the path. Manage!

Go out there, get uncomfortable to go for your goals! :)

It would be interesting to see a time-lapse video of the human skin pealing off while regrowing.

The bank that refused me called back, after I'd emailed them to go through with a process they outlined in their refusal letter, where they'd open an account through the national bank. This bank said that they can't do it, for some reason that the employee calling didn't know. I'd have to go myself to the Bank of France, or maybe call or email.

I'm aiming to become more adaptable. To do what I value even if it's not immediately what I want. Also to what I immediately want if I value it.

BTW coffee seems to stimulate the entire body and mind! :)

Get high off of caffeine and exercise! :)

Life: the desperate quest for double-bonds.

Things generally "go wrong" in the sense of not going as expected. So it's only a matter of how to right things! :)

We're just a bunch of cells. Moving around! :)

I'm gonna eventually get out of here! :)

Use your motivations! :)

There are generally hassles. If you want it, go for it! :)

There are smooth people, sharp people, balanced people. Some are like rectangles, some like triangles or blades. Others are like spheres. Which are you? I think I'm somewhat balanced in that regard.

In this apartment building, I've had a microwave, two air conditioners, a fan, and two lights fail. I think the electricity's not up to snuff! :)

I guess things break! Adapt!

Word of the day: bathmotropic, excitability of the heart.

Things generally look different from the outside than from the inside.

You know you've been working hard when your blood is 50% coffee…

Feeling down? Coffee!

Having trouble concentrating? Coffee!

Coffee and toothpaste. Copy and paste. :)

How much coffee do you need to drink to make doing X interesting? :)

As we use tools, technologies, culture, we hang out with people from the past who left these relics behind.

Life has its risks. Make it an adventure!

Whatever you do there are annoyances. At least when you select and execute well there are rewards!

Just dealing with a bunch of headaches, I guess. :)

Go ahead! :)


The Psychological Toll of Coronavirus

Submitted by eagle on Tue, 08/24/2021 - 19:57

While island-hopping around the Caribbean, I went to Guadeloupe. Spending a short while there, recuperating from some of my recent escapades on other islands, one day I noticed someone wearing a surgical mask. Little did I know how much that would affect me over the subsequent year.

Coronavirus. SARS-CoV-2

As the days progressed, more people took to wearing the masks. Coronavirus had arrived. Stores shut down, public places emptied. The government closed the roads and the towns. Transportation to and from the island shut down, leaving me stuck in Guadeloupe.

The longer I stayed on the island, the more I witnessed psychological turmoil: in the local residents, in other non-locals stuck on the island, and in myself. Scientists have studied the psychological tolls of COVID-19, finding these as severe as post-traumatic stress disorder. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0240146) People feel the events, then develop mental illness.

Capesterre Belle-Eau, Guadeloupe during the Coronavirus

Coronavirus causes increases in anxiety, depression, and stress, a finding consistent in many different countries. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246824) These represent some of the more common mental health problems anyways, so the pandemic exasperates underlying issues. Approximately 80% of people in a study suffered panic after the Coronavirus epidemic hit, while nearly half exhibited generalized anxiety. (https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0165032720324460) Many people are suffering psychologically as a result of their fears, isolation, and loss of income. (https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/6/42/eabd5390.full)

The main sources of stress falling out of COVID include worries over finances, the ability to purchase basic supplies, and the infliction of social harms against others (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246894). The worry over harming others occurs in a relatively collectivist culture, so worries over individual harms may have more relevance in other countries. Stress stems from anger at society, which in men has to do with financial difficulties, but for women with adjustments to routines. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246894) Negative feelings have spewed forth from the pandemic, including anxiety, anger, and vulnerability. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246894)

COVID-19 has had unprecedentedly immense effects on people's health, finances, and psychology. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246894) The effects are more severe for females and people with perceived financial difficulty, sedentary lifestyle, underlying medical conditions, or other aggravating factors. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0248916) Females have more sensitive cognitive and emotional lives, and are more medically susceptible to the Coronavirus. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0237626) People in medical school, who have more knowledge of the situation, perceive less risk than do those in college. Those studying in Wuhan, Hubei province, China, where the virus started, have more worries, understandably.

While the virus has had psychological effects on people in different countries, these effects have been far from equal. For instance, Thailand, whose economy relies on tourism, has had drastically more depression, anxiety, and stress than other Asian countries — even though it has had far fewer fatal or non-fatal cases of Coronavirus. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246824) Thailand lost around 6.7% of its GDP in 2020, more than any other Asian country. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246824) In other countries, like Pakistan, psychological problems resulted more from poor medical and sanitary conditions, rather than from economic costs. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246824) Some Pakistani health workers even considered quitting for lack of safety equipment. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246824)

Misinformation about Coronavirus increases people's susceptibility to mental woes. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246824) Demographically, young adults suffer more from the psychological symptoms of Coronavirus than do middle-aged adults. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0248916) Having multiple children in one's household serves as a protective factor. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246824)

The COVID-19 pandemic has even affected life-and-death statistics. The National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) took the unusual step of producing mortality data outside of its annual schedule. The report indicates that 17.7% more people died in 2020 than in 2019. That's half a million extra corpses. Well over half of these were caused by Coronavirus, ranking as the third leading cause of death, after only heart disease and cancer. (https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2778234) Hundreds of thousands of additional Coronavirus deaths are occurring in 2021, in the US alone.

Suicides have increased during the pandemic. Scientists argue that depression is the facet that explains this. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0248916) In addition to the dire problems that people face from the virus itself, they also struggle with indirect effects like the lockdowns. (https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0240146) The psychological effects of COVID-19 will last long after the pandemic ends.

People in Guadeloupe, as well as other nearby islands, have suffered immensely from the Coronavirus. I met a woman from Dominica working in Guadeloupe, who could not return to her country. Frustration has spread throughout the Caribbean. Many of these islands depend on tourism. With borders closed, hotels and restaurants and much of the economy of these islands have ground to a halt.

Residents in Guadeloupe face isolation and crime, in addition to the stress and financial difficulties. Personally I have become a victim of multiple crimes, including the theft of a laptop and various electronics, as well as witnessing and hearing about other crimes. Many of these islands remain closed or practically closed to visitors, the lifeblood of the islands.

Over a year after the onset of Coronavirus, I remain in Guadeloupe. I had only expected to stay for a few weeks or so. In some sense, the mental problems have become even more serious as the pandemic has developed. Nonetheless, I and the other islanders — I've started thinking of myself as a resident, for now — adjust to a different life.

Capesterre Belle-Eau, Guadeloupe during Coronavirus

Idle Thoughts

Submitted by eagle on Sun, 08/15/2021 - 18:12

Eagle Gamma

They should have instructions for new students:

What should you study? Ask yourself what you're interested in.

Drugs and bombs: chemistry
Sex and drugs: psychology
Sex: biology

A somewhat strange time, with the Coronavirus, for everyone and for me, and as usual for me. :)

Somewhat frustrating not to travel, as well as multiple frustrations with work, banks, mail, and other usual areas of frustration. Also somewhat of a relief not to travel, which can add quite a bit of pressure.

Blood Runs Thicker than Water: A Drink Recipe Book for Mosquitoes :)

The weather is a powerful mind-control device.

And body control, for those who make the distinction.

Many people live in the stones ages but with imported smart phones. :)

Most people have most things wrong. :)

I tend to overly worry over many things. Probably a common human failing.

Idea: Ramen soup but with rice instead of noodles.

After seemingly months on end of rain, a few hours of sun, then some more rain. :)

Feeling fine! :)

Maybe back out there again soon?!?!?! :)

Holding On!

Submitted by eagle on Mon, 07/26/2021 - 20:35

What if your hair grew faster than you could cut it?

Idea: hot pepper spray. Like pepper spray for attackers, but to put on your food. I'm guessing it's been done.

I now feel confident that I can more consistently rent!

For a while, I'd been riding/touring. Hadn't stayed in one place for a while. When I started renting recently in Guadeloupe, it felt tenuous. Now I'm feeling more firm. Also more confident in general!

Eagle Gamma

I still can't believe you can travel to different countries by bike! :)

You know it's time to go shopping when you're eating rice with vegetable oil and hot sauce, the mosquitoes are biting cuz you're out of repellent, and you're out of other basic supplies. :)

(It's been rainy so I haven't felt like going.)

(I did go shopping, also they opened a new restaurant right next door where I've gone nearly each day!)

Now Guyana may seem more appealing to me than Venezuela. Not that exciting for me, but safer anyways. I don't necessarily plan to spend more than a few weeks in either, but we all know how plans turn out. :)

Seems like much of Venezuela is mired in poverty. I don't know that I'd want to go, that it would be safe or polite to go. They may not even have drinking water.

Venezuela: the bad guys are winning.

Becoming overly comfortable. :)

Also overly uncomfortable at times.

I want to ride again soon!

I think I have enough motivations to go that I can overcome the comforts, when it comes time to go.

It's a ton more interesting to ride around different countries than to remain in a small agricultural town. :)

Eagle Gamma

The environment (in the broader sense) is already "used" rather than "new". There are threats and opportunities anywhere.

We should take advantage of the opportunities, manage the threats!

After around a year in Guadeloupe, I think this country has around my least favorite weather that I've had in the Caribbean! It seems cloudy and rainy nearly non-stop!

Idea: science fiction about if humans had three or more chromosomes. I'm guessing it's been done.

Countries evolve slowly. By traveling, you can speed up the rate of cultural evolution that you experience.

Evolutionary psychotherapy: Don't expect everything to be how you want, then feel disappointed. Expect things to have developed from nothing, then feel better.

A funny way to see things: the world as a bicycle park. Each country is a different area you can ride. :)

Exercise works as a digestif as well as a drug.

Going through some tight activities. Even the ordinary can seem extraordinary. Readying to leave, whenever! :)

Ahead! :)


Travel Plans Post-Coronavirus!

Submitted by eagle on Sun, 07/04/2021 - 14:35

I'm now having more of a wait-and-see approach for travel. Whenever the Coronavirus is over, I plan to go. It looks like it's starting to clear up, but remains an issue. I may route around Venezuela, if the situation there remains iffy.

There are generally multiple choices in life.

I'd been deciding where to go after the Caribbean islands. Mainly with Latin America. I'd considered Meso-America, Venezuela, and Guyana. Had somewhat settled on Venezuela, in part as there is supposedly a ferry from Trinidad & Tobago (the last part of the string of islands I'd planned to see) to Venezuela.

Venezuela has an unstable political situation. It's looked like it may remain unstable, or become more dictatorial, or fix itself somewhat. As the situation seems to have deteriorated somewhat. I'm now more considering Guyana again. It's right nearby. Would probably be a cheap flight instead of a ferry. It would gain me three small countries (English and French Guyana, Suriname) instead of Venezuela.

I'd wanted to do all four of those countries. From what I've seen, however, even if Venezuela does seem worth going to, it doesn't look like there's a practical method to go from Venezuela to the adjacent Guyana, due to the intervening mountain range. It seems that there's a lack of roads, and a border dispute.

Oh well.

I'm maintaining an open mind. It's probably months or well over a year until I'm ready to leave Trinidad & Tobago, if that's even where I go. So, I'm not making that decision now. We'll see how Venezuela looks when I'm closer. Also, how the transportation options are, how I feel, and any other considerations that aren't even available now.

A lot of what we learn is irrelevant or wrong.

I'm now thinking of defaulting to Guyana/Suriname/Guyane, instead of Venezuela, after Trinidad & Tobago. Open to either route, or any other I choose. A matter of what seems better at the time.

I don't necessarily wanna go into an unstable military dictatorship, where three million people have recently fled.

There may not be electricity or wifi in Venezuela for work, or for an ebike. It may be unsafe. There may not be food or toilet paper.

Not sure that I'd wanna cross the border into Venezuela. Let alone a few times, if I visit some of the offshore islands that belong to other countries.

Also, can go through with some more of the non-Spanish language before spending a while in Spanish-speaking countries. That would give Venezuela a few more years to sort itself out.

I'm excited for maybe going soon to Guyane! :)

I think my decision would be to go to Guyana/Suriname if Venezuela seems unsafe, or to go to Venezuela.

They're advertising reopenings. I'm speculating vaguely that maybe around August? I've been wrong so many times before.

Maybe I'll do the Guyanas after the island Caribbean. Would remain within the Caribbean, which I guess Venezuela would too. May make it easier to see all the countries of South America, which I can probably do anyways (and which I want to do). I think either way would probably work about as well. Often there are competing options that can each work out. We'll see! :)

Instead of worry or angry, hurry! Find practical alternatives! :)

Do you want to go to the middle of nowhere (Guyanas), or the middle of a failed socialist state (Venezuela)? I'm leaning Guyanas.

Travel is like being a kid again.

Science is like being a kid again.

Dreaming or using drugs (altering your state of consciousness) is like being a kid again.

Everything seems so new!

Going to Guyana instead of Venezuela is like clicking with the trackpad instead of the button.

Probably figuring out bank cards is comparable, too.

Conserved mentality: As we have some genes conserved for e.g. digestion/metabolism, we should also have some genes conserved for mentality. E.g. liking potatoes same as an australopithecine (ape-man) would like yams or whatever.

It's funny to see on the French products that they have (in the French Caribbean) the proudly made in France signs. I guess each country feels defensive/proud of its nationality.

Some of the restrictions in different countries seem increasingly quaint in this age of globalization. It no longer matters as much which country you're in, but I guess the laws and habits remain.

Going through my planning notes for leaving Guadeloupe, which I haven't done several months later, it seems kind of funny how excitedly I had planned to leave soon. Now I'm asking myself whether it'll even be this year!

I think it doesn’t matter too much exactly when I leave. I'm confident it'll be fine anyways. In the meantime, I've had a chance to do some work, take care of even a few more long-term chores, and adjust my plans. It may work out even better to have this extension.

I got into a "work camp" mentality while waiting out the Coronavirus. There isn't that much of interest in this location that I'd wanted to do other than work. Now it seems again like things may be reopening? Also my work situation adjusted (several times, but again recently) such that I'm now in moderate rather than heavy work mode. Feels somewhat like returning to travel mode, but different than before. Also, with remaining uncertainty over whether this is another false alarm, or whether Coronavirus is finishing.

Heavy weather. Sleeping, working. Wouldn't travel much anyways.

Even a year or so after arriving, finding new products. I guess with access to the European and Caribbean markets, I shouldn't be too surprised that there are so many products available.

Things often go surprisingly, no surprise there. :)

Go ahead!!!!! :)

Eagle Gamma


Caribbean Jottings

Submitted by eagle on Sat, 06/19/2021 - 16:34

Idea: decaffeinated chocolate. :)

Chocolate has some caffeine in it. When I eat a ton of dark chocolate, I can feel it. I suppose I can just eat non-chocolate sweets.

The taste of breadfruit is elusive. Hard to describe. Sweet, smooth, sour, soft.

Somewhat citric.  Somewhat tropical.

Somewhat like artichoke. Somewhat grassy. Somewhat like guanabana.

Seems like there's a local election going on. Trucks are driving around with music and speakers. I heard one talking about growing more bananas. This is a highly agricultural area, one of the main banana-growing regions in the country.

They have some catchy music. I think it would be funny, if not practical, to have catchy jingles during math lectures. :)

Looking at the map again, I'm becoming excited to get back out there on the road!

I've appreciated having a pause. Also, I may not have appreciated travel as much anyways with things closed due to Coronavirus. Maybe soon things will reopen!

Things normally become fucked up, for anyone. It's normal. :)

Go on!!!!! :)

Eagle Gamma

Left Brain vs. Right Brain at SimplyPsychology

Submitted by eagle on Mon, 05/31/2021 - 21:47

My latest piece is out!

Left Brain vs. Right Brain at SimplyPsychology:

The brain consists of twin halves, a left hemisphere alongside a nearly symmetrical right hemisphere.

Hemispheric lateralization is the idea that both hemispheres are functionally different and that certain mental processes and behaviours are mainly controlled by one hemisphere rather than the other.

Read it now!

Eagle Gamma at SimplyPsychology