I’m My Own Best Fluffer

“Who the heck do you think you are, mister?!”

— virtual townsperson

Well, this blogging seems as though it will continue and although I don’t seem to blog in the daily news mode, I appreciate the efforts of those who do. My Island Notes blog is more of the e-zine type — where I just sort of post something when a critical mass of self-interest compels me to do so.

Anyway, it amounts to an arbitrary posting schedule but I figure readers would be put off by excess blog-filler-fluff. Well… ‘cept for my mom. She sort of told me to give that edu-rant-thing a rest — maybe lighten up a bit, you know?

Dear Mom, I hope you like this. Fluffy sure does. Love, Darren
Dear Mom, I hope you like this. Fluffy sure does. Love, Darren

Still, I do find faults in the status quo of our society and the older I get, the more I observe that we might just want to step up to the plate and offer our own take on some of this stuff — couldn’t be much worse than what the other douche bags come up with: probably better. Not to sound corny, but in that sense, the ability to blog — perhaps articulate a useful idea stemming from one’s unique experience — is a gift that sort of obligates us to do it.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t add that our highest challenge is to get the ideas, recordings, etc. off of the blog and somehow enhance our non-computing lives in our community. I suppose that’s where my attempts at unmasking technology’s darker side come from.

While in one sense gadgetry is mesmerizing and amazingly powerful, it can also be very addictive, deadening, and manipulative of our essential living humanity. (Read: The Gadget Lover : Narcissus as Narcosis by Marshall McLuhan sometime.) Not to go too metaphysical, but these things strike me as conflicting forces that must be reconciled — balanced — for optimal health.

Add to this, writing and editing is just fun. I say fun; I should maybe say, challenging work — low-paying for sure (actually pay to work, but good work). Putting it all together is like some puzzle or lump of clay that you just want to tweak one more time — for meaning’s sake. You can’t buy that at any price.

I’ve recently realized that my fellow bloggers tend to write a little bio-thingy, so…

I live in the upper Puna district on the island of Hawai’i where I homestead. My “professional” (i.e. paying) work has been, and is currently, teaching English as a Second Language. I’ve lived in Japan for six years — sort of get by all right in Japanese — I quite like (most) things Japanese. Nonetheless, I also enjoy the western ways. My story is one of growing up in northern Minnesota — living and working from Miami to California — and points in between — moving to Hilo on a whim some twenty years ago — digging in at this very end of this western frontier, smashing ingrained Christianity headlong into Buddhism (and the rest of the eastern frontier). It’s the kind of ride that this experiment called America has maybe facilitated — for good or for bad.

So fluff? Ya, it’s a little fluffy. But I think I’ve come to understand why we include the bio-thing.

9 thoughts on “I’m My Own Best Fluffer

  1. Thanks for the bio Darren-san. Now I know we’ve got 3 things in common:

    1) Educators who have a big problem with the current system
    2) Love Japan (but we’re “cherry-pickers”)
    3) Love Live Music.

    I look forward to talking story, you can practice your Japanese with Kurumi. I’m pretty flexible until, and after, next week (Off to the mainland on Sunday for business.) But hey, can’t wait to break out the guitars. You lead; I follow and learn…how about we start with some 3 chord blues and see what happens? :-)

    Cool looking cat! Wait’ll you hear a song I wrote about my wife’s old (deceased) cat. It started out as a short musical play that I wrote with a friend years ago when I taught English at a juku in Fujisawa. A few years back I tinkered with it, and my warped mind managed to turn this innocent children’s fable into a decadent, r-rated rockabilly tune…hmm, maybe I’ll post it…


  2. Hey Tim, thanks for the comments. Looking forward to an offline meeting. Didn’t get as far as Pahoa for St. Patty’s..just Kea’au, and that’s considered a BIG time out. That new steakhouse place seemed okay..they could groove out their ambience a bit more.. And yes! Bluesin’ we should. (However, if I am determined as exalted ‘blues leader’, I insist on 17 chords–no more, no less! ..nah.) I do dig the rockabilly so bust that song out. Me, I wrote this country tune in Japan called, “Lonely Haircut”–between going to the cheap-ass hair-mangle shop by the station, and not having great Japanese vocabulary with which to minimize the nervous hacking (run! It’s a gaijin wanting a haircut!)–well, those were sometimes lonely haircuts. Lastly, I don’t know that ‘kawaiso’ (pathetic) kitty. Just saved that pic from internet-land, thinking it might be useful someday, and lo and behold. We have very non-antler-wearing outside cats (Estrus, Steuben, and Dilrod) up here.

    Have a good trip! (What’s the equivalent of ‘break a leg’ in your line of work? “Fulminate an international incident!” ya, that must be it.)

  3. Nice cat. I think her[or his] eyes really convey the bio-pic essence of this posting for those who might be more inclined to visual learning.

    But seriously folks…if only one could edit all the time!

    I am currently editing resumes and old poems. The former suxxxxx and the latter is great. I intend to send a poem book your way soon-ish. Very -ish, not as soon as one might hope.

  4. Krishna,

    “If I Could Only Edit All The Time” by Krishna ..Brilliant!

    A poem entitled as such is sure to practically write itself..

    I await your response to this literary challenge. ..Actually, I await anybody’s response..PEN THIS POEM, PEOPLE! ..type it! I don’t care. Just GET IT IN!

    ..or any response. I’ll be right here. awaiting..
    ..mm..Haagen-Daaz..’if i could eat ice-cream all the time’.. That’s it! ..er, no. That’s the SECOND brilliant unwritten poem today! ..dang, all this rain nourishes genius!

  5. Darren dude- finally getting around to exploring more of your site and having a great time with the headphones on, and prodding the twins to get their homework done with sharp, head-piercing stink-eye glances. Well done so far, and keep it coming. We’ll have to get together and talk about northern Minnesota some day- one of my favorite places in the world, developed by annual summer fishing trips from my childhood home in northwest Iowa. My dad ended up buying a cabin from the resort we always went to and lives there now, on Round Lake, near Ponsford. As a child, I picked a spot on the map up there that looked to be the most remote wilderness I could find and swore I would walk up there with my survival books and live the life of the most happy hermit in the world. Took a wrong turn early on and ended up in Volcano…

  6. Heya Shawn,

    Thanks for checking it out. Actually, I was just checking out your fine-looking Driftingson site as well. My first building down here was a pole-house and so your post about siding a pole-barn naturally resonated with me. I guess my dear gf also took an English class from your partner which she quite enjoyed. (This means that I actually helped edit her papers as..ghost-editor.) You betcha, we gots to compare notes on the north of Minnesota. Had no idea that you’d traversed the ol’ country. It has been a pleasure participating in the sustainability forum with your good inputs. Stop on down here sometime. Aloha and Mahalo!

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