Diary Notes

https://www.fujichia.com/house/posts/2020-06-16/index.html

sandwich list / format struggles / fake blog idea / crypt comparison / screencaps / i didn't share it / links / a few weird lists / did you ever just like, look at your hands?
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Do you guys keep a diary? I do. It's good to write down your thoughts and feelings somewhere, and when you can't do that, it's still good to just write down what sandwiches you ate and what movies you watched. It's good to keep track! If you're a social media person, you might be tempted to do a diary that way, posting everything. But I'm telling you, it's good to have a place somewhere for the thoughts that you're not done thinking, and the data you're accumulating without concern-- the dreams, the daydreams, the lists of sandwiches. It's good for your mind to have this place to process, and quite frankly it's probably better for the timeline.

I struggled with the diary format for most of my life, I just couldn't get into it. Writing in a hard-bound book seemed too precious, and just writing into a text file on my computer seemed way too ephemeral. Anyway I finally got it pinned down now, I have a fake blog.

My fake blog is a group of folders and files on my computer desktop, unconnected to the internet. Every day or every other day I run a little script I wrote (workbook.sh), which opens up index.html and writes the date at the top. Then, under the date, and above the previous entries, I write whatever's on my mind. I write directly in html, which after years of writing a blog is my native format. Writing in html is great, and it allows me to paste in images and decorate the page, as I would a hardbound book, or dollhouse. As with this website (Fujichia.com) I am very particular about the display style. The diary is also in white monospaced font on a black background, with headers in Cooper Black. I write it in a text file and view it on a browser, and again, it is not connected to the internet, it’s only on my computer. If the website is my castle, the diary is my crypt, a warm dull cavern, benthic and sessile.


The diary has a lot of pictures, because I take a lot of screengrabs during the day, and I've set the program to automatically include the recent batch of screengrabs in the new post. In this way I always have something to start writing about-- when I start the diary program the recent pics are sitting right there. Some are things I wanted to remember, some are just "here's a nice vibe" tumblr-style image blogging. It's practical but also fun, which is a kind of practical, when you're doing a task in which a good mood is a great asset.

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I started taking screencaps of every time I look up a word in the dictionary, for no real reason, I just thought that was data I might want to have at some point. That goes in the diary.

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I know I could just copy the text from the website and paste it into the file as text, but there's something nice and playful about saving it as a picture-- it reinforces that scrapbook feeling, and also lets the text retain its original style, and to some degree, its context.

I'm tempted to share the script that runs the diary but I think that's too much minutia for the moment, and my point here isn't "run this program" or "elegant code", it's just "keep a diary in a way that works for you". Get a notebook or open up a text file and go for it. Being alive is a dizzying dance on a razor's edge between annihilation and infinite embrace-- personally I find it very helpful to take notes.

As with a sketchbook, the less stuff there is in the diary the stupider you're going to feel about it, so push through those first awkward pages by just writing dumb shit, or whatever comes to mind. Don't think about the writing being "good" (as a piece of writing) or even useful. Just grind away at first. This will also function as a security feature-- if the first part is extra boring or nonsensical, no one who picks up your diary will want to follow through to the more sublime moments.


links / misc

  • RI Solidarity Fund - donate to support RI grassroots orgs [link]

  • consolidated donation page for groups that specifically cater to trans black women: [link]

  • find a police protest near you: [link]

  • reading material for a Brown University Critical Race Studies class [link]

  • reading material about prison abolition via aworldwithoutpolice.org [link]

  • archive.org is a utopic website that I use constantly, and is currently under attack by a group of moneyed publishers seeking to shut down the lending library aspect of the site. [link]

  • last week I posted about Ramsey Orta's homecoming fund, this week I wanted to add the fundraiser for his former partner, who is looking to move on with her life and raise her daughter away from him. Violence and trauma really just bounces around to everyone in your life and it takes special care to stop it. [link]

  • I started a page in the library for all the words I look up, it's a funny set of words. I look up words all the time! [link]

  • While I was making that dictionary page I realized that I made it really easy for myself to list all the movies I watched last year, alongside whatever I had to say at the time. I'm posting this in the hopes of making this website more like Ulillillia-- more lists! If anyone reads this and wants to watch Tora-San, drop me a line and I'll send a link. And people who already love Tora-san MUST reach out, even if you never wrote to me before. Mandatory! [link]

  • The first of what was to be many episodes of Funeral Cone TV was finally completed a few weeks ago, I forgot to post it. It was filmed last summer and stars the members of the band as themselves and me and Sakiko as terrifying horrible stabbers. CW: stabbing and blood and scary faces looking menacingly at the camera. Filmed in the basement of the News Cafe on a Sunday morning, just me in face paint drinking a strawberry beer with the sunday morning regulars, who have all seen crazier things. [link]

  • I was trying to remember who made those cool scrapbook-like boxes, remember these? It was Joseph Cornell (on the left). But a "Cornell box" is also the thing on the right, it's a physical setting used to test and calibrate computer visual recognition systems. They are technically unrelated (the box on the right is named after Cornell the university). But both of these are like a diary kind of? Or anyway both are valid diary styles-- accumulating tidbits and vision calibration.

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OK thanks for reading! Send me a note if you feel like it, would love to hear a hey from the void. Also send links you're donating to, help me keep the ball rolling. You can send me an email or leave me a message on the contact page: [link]. If you want these posts delivered to your email you can sign up for the substack, which is here: [link].

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