Coded green.

Sunday 6 August 2000


Pic of the day: Looking out from the shadows to the land of light.

Holy Martians

Slept till 10:30 this morning, but not all at once. I woke up at 6:30 because I dreamt of a plate-sized spider with extra many legs who was specifically going for me. I woke up and it was waiting for me in the dreamworld, so I waited till the next dream came a few minutes later before I dived back in. Woke up around 8 and listened to some music before I fell back to sleep. Dreamt about a less than nuclear family: Adam, Eve, Michael, Kenn and Z, the visitor from Mars, which was me. Needless to say it was all horribly complicated.

The access to the castle was through the sea, a rather rough gray piece of water and a long swim. I noticed this in particular when Eve was arriving, and we did worry about her. But she was a big, rough, muscled woman who could certainly stand up to heavy work. Adam even more so, and to be honest I did not hear him say anything more advanced than a grunt the whole time - he gave a distinct caveman impression. The other two were more the normal type. Except that Kenn was bi, for the occasion. And I was a Martian called Z (Zed). I had some quasi magical abilities, which I eventually used to make a copy of my sleeping bag because the original had been appropriated by one of Eve's daugthers. Ahem. There was a whole lot of these, but I never saw them except at the end of the dream when they were sleeping.

It is a safe bet that the Martian was included because of Edgar Rice Burroughs A Princess of Mars, which I recently read in e-text. Though Z the Martian did not look or act like those Martians, but more like the boy who had grown up with Martians in Heinlein's Stranger in a Strange Land. And when I woke up, there was also the association to the book Men are from Mars, women are from Venus (or some such - I never actually read that one).

Perhaps all men are strangers in a strange land.


The browser war continues: Yesterday, my computer helpfully asked me if I wanted to upgrade to the newer version of Internet Explorer, 5.5. I use IE mainly for Internet banking and to upload my archives to Crosswinds. But since I have heard there was a security hole in IE5, I wanted the upgrade. It took about an hour, as can be expected from a bloatware browser, and then it didn't work. After various attempts at repair, I gave up and rolled back to the previous version. Except that it rolled back to version 4.0, erasing my certificates for 5.0 in the process. Gee. 50 points from Slytherin. [1]

So I decided that I would try Opera for netbanking, now that it is up to version 4 and with better Java integration. Of course I had to get new certificates, but I needed that anyway. It almost worked. Except that at various random points during my work with the netbank, the program suddenly asked for the password of the certificate. I gave that, and sometimes it worked. Then it suddenly didn't, and Opera crashed. (At least the operating system kept running this time.) 50 points from Gryffindor. [1]

(On the bright side, I actually managed to upload the July archive with Opera this time. Oh, it did give warnings, but it worked, so now my July entries are all available from the Diary Farm.)


Since it is Sunday, the holy day of most Christians, I have given a bit of thought to this whole concept of holy things. It seems that the holy, or sacred, is always something that is special, something different, something set aside. So there are holy days, which are not like other days. There are holy houses, which are not like other houses. There is even a holy language, quite often. Not just like in the middle ages, when the priests spoke in Latin. Even now, people tend to change their language when in religious situations.

I see that this thing happens in all religions that I know of, and it was rather explicit in the Old Testament. But Jesus did not seem too concerned about it. He got in some scrapes with the local pietists because he healed people on the Sabbath, and his disciples picked grain on the Sabbath. He was not impressed with the Temple and said that in the future people would not worship in special places, but in their hearts. Yet he would be there quite a bit himself, and chased out the capitalists on one occasion. So I am not quite sure.

But I do think there is a danger in separating the holy from the worldly too much. People may end up living two different lives. I know this from my own life. It's really a form of hypocricy. You are this holy person one place and this worldly person another place. I am a bit worried over that. Shouldn't we always be the same person, regardless of time, place and company? Or can we really be that? Are we so diverse, our span so wide, that we need a rift inside to reach it all?

[1] "Points" refer to the Harry Potter books, in which there is a keen rivalry between the "houses" (somewhat like fraternities) of Gryffindor and Slytherin, and to a lesser extent Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw. If you don't have the Harry Potter books, ask a friend. They are almost everywhere, and most readers are a bit on the evangelical side when it comes to Harry Potter.

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