A Puff of Absurdity: On Anxiety

I just finished John Green’s Turtles All the Way Down, which I read because he claimed it was his way of trying to put words around what it’s like to live with profound anxiety, and then I saw this article asking “Why are more American teens than ever suffering from severe anxiety?”. I was raised ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On the Absurdist Victory: All is Well

A while back I wrote about a video comparing Stoicism and Existentialism. The video also touched on different psychology principles developed from each philosophy. Stoicism is easily seen in CBT and REBT, which start with the premise that when we’re upset it’s because of our perception of things, not the things in themselves, and we often ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Comparing Existentialism and Stoicism

This summer, I went on one camping trip with a book on Stoicism, then another camping trip with a book on Existentialism, and I was intrigued by the many similarities. Then I came across this video that has some overlap with what I had noticed. As they say in the video, Massimo Pigliucci (MP) on Stoicism ...

mark a rayner: The Procedure

Grounding the team had been difficult, but not impossible. Dr. Hansrik assured them there would be no danger, once the patient was unconscious. Prior to sedation, the patient was capable of anything. (Just ask the good folk of Peoria, Illinois, who’d made the terrible mistake of not taking the patient’s demands for “unlimited chicken wings and non-stop ...

mark a rayner: Camusic of the Spheres 

The dreams had returned, again, and no amount of coffee and cigarettes could keep their influence at bay. The ennui was crushing at times, and even talking with an outrageous French accent would not help. He thought of his days in the theatre. Oh, the crazy antics they’d get up to behind the proscenium. His ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On Childhood Angst

Can children be existentialists? What I’m asking isn’t so much whether or not it’s possible, but should we allow it?  If I dare to claim to define some central ideas here, the part about living authentically and embracing the freedom that comes with taking responsibility for all our choices with no excuses, that side of it ...

mark a rayner: Did I Miss Anything?

Question frequently asked by students after missing a class by Tom Wayman The Astonishing Weight of the Dead. Vancouver: Polestar, 1994. Nothing. When we realized you weren’t here we sat with our hands folded on our desks in silence, for the full two hours Everything. I gave an exam worth 40 per cent of the grade ...

A Puff of Absurdity: On the Titanic and Tolstoy

I’ve heard this before somewhere, but I can’t find it to give due credit:  Coping with climate change is like coping with being a passenger on the Titanic. Some won’t notice anything’s amiss until they’re well into the water. Some will notice it’s going down and decide we should continue playing until the bitter end. ...

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: Explaining video games

This helps me to understand why my character in Skyrim keeps picking up crap to sell, even though he has more money than he’ll ever be able to spend. Also, snowberries. Alltop tastes delicious with existential berries.

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: Clown Apocalypse: The Clownnui

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: Tell Me About Your Mother

You awake each morning screaming, your mouth dry and your eyes red from the tears that bath your Pillow of Ennui. You had the dream again. Of falling. Of dogs tearing at your carcass, broken on the dirty pavement of … Continue reading →

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: Paging Dr. Godhead

“…whoever wishes to become a philosopher must learn not to be frightened by absurdities.” –Bertrand Russell “The satirist is prevented by repulsion from gaining a better knowledge of the world he is attracted to, yet he is forced by attraction … Continue reading →

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: Time robots!

Time Robot would be a great name for a band. It would also be a horribly misleading title for a French film based on this premise. (Though it would be fun to hear Arnold Schwarzenegger try to say “ennui” and … Continue reading →

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: La dolce vita

It wasn’t always so easy. There used to be an anger in him. An emptiness that nothing could fill … nothing material anyway. He fell through time and space, and into a kind of dream. And it seemed as though … Continue reading →

A Puff of Absurdity: The Not-So-Awful Truth About Being Single

“If you’re lonely when you’re alone, you’re in bad company.”  Jean-Paul Sartre In yesterday’s Globe & Mail, Margaret Wente claims that people can get to a much greater depth of understanding and “perfection” of self through a married relationship than they can possibly do if they remain single. “…the road to self-actualization isn’t through perfection ...

350 or bust: Saturday At The Movies

We met Henri a few weeks ago. Here’s the first video in which he explores his angst:

350 or bust: Saturday At The Movies

Cat ennui – clever and funny! Thanks to Emma for passing it on.

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: The Stranger (The Outsider)

I read this originally in French class, sometime during my high school career. (Where I was a music nerd, and a hard-core nerd, long before that was remotely cool.) Most of this famous existential work was read aloud in class, … Continue reading →

Politics and its Discontents: The Unbearable Pain of Being

For those who have never been quite certain of the true meaning of existential angst, may I recommend the following? And for your further discernment, Henri 2 Paw de Deux: Recommend this Post

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: Sad Spaceman reads too much Camus

Alltop enjoys a good void.

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: Why Dr. McCoy was not a whiny bitch

McCoy, Kirk and Spock are all about to die as their bodies are de-atomized over a period of several agonizing seconds. Everyone in the original Star Trek was quite condescending to Bones whenever he got fretful about using the transporter. … Continue reading →

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: Torpor, Ennui, the End of the Universe

That kid just bummed me out. Alltop would love a new bike.