The ‘Lancer has been on hiatus since mid-summer. It now takes tentative steps to leave that status behind.
Those that have read regularly for some time may wish to know why. Honestly, I would rather not say; however, I feel that the owed courtesy of an answer outweighs my enormous reluctance, and I am well aware that my silence is not the expected behavior for handling distress. Most people would have hosed the whole blow-by-blow onto Facebook all along, in the modern trend of forcing the emotional finger down one’s throat in the most public possible way (being sure to take selfies). If that works for them, very well.
The more bothered I am, the more silent I grow and the fewer people I tell. This is because talking about it harms rather than helps me, and also harms those to whom I talk, none of whom deserve to hurt. It would hurt them because–as seems obvious to me–it would further harm me, and thus their reward for honest caring and kind intentions would be to see me feel worse. In some cases, they might compound that disappointment by faulting themselves for what is simply a personality quirk of mine. I care enough about my friends not to put them in a position where we both hurt more.
Basic principles: don’t ask for help you don’t want, and don’t lead people on to try and help you if your personality won’t let them succeed. Simple humanity, at least by my lights.
But just to reassure everyone, there is no terminal illness, no sudden death or disability in my world, no horrific physical injury, no marital disaster, nothing like that. Suffice to say: I have just spent this time dealing with some issues. I now begin to feel like talking once more. I hope this will suffice, and will be received with the same compassionate acceptance you all have generously shown. And for all those who follow, and did not unfollow, thank you.
What this also means is that I find myself thinking about posting on Facepalm again. For months, I have not felt like engaging the world on any but my own terms. That ruled out online forums; simple logic says if you don’t want the reactions, don’t say the things. And I then began to delete my Facebook wall postings. It felt kind of good, and I decided to keep going. In fact, I decided not to start posting new ones until I had wiped out the accumulated mass of, what, nine years of posts. I’m only done back to 2013, so I see completion as some way off, but within reach. I don’t regret it. I regret some photos and images I removed rather than hid from the timeline, but that’s it.
Onward to actual content.
A side effect of this process has been to realize that it’s time to split the sheets with Firefox. It has become turtle-slow, and bringing my outdated version current will break most of the extensions that make it worthwhile to me. Safari and Chrome are out of the question, as is Irrelevant Explorer (or whatever it now calls itself), so I settled on Opera.
This is not a simple process. Opera works differently, and in some ways I much dislike. I’m sure some of the speed improvement has to do with using fewer extensions and blockers, but maybe I didn’t need that many. The big privacy discovery was PrivacyBadger, a nifty tool that lets you block a lot of the crap they throw at you, then add them back one by one until you find the one key item that un-breaks the site just enough to get what you want. Between that, Ghostery, Disconnect, UnTrackMe, and Privacy Protector Plus, I think I’ve got this aspect where it needs to be.
I’m not sure what could possibly pierce the anti-junk armor of five different add-ins, but each one seems to catch a number of intrusions, so unless they are reporting redundantly, they’re all doing some good. The downside to Opera is that fewer add-ins exist for it. There will be compromise.
What Opera still needs in order for me to uninstall Firefox: a good weather add-in, a good reminder add-in, an easier way to block cookies from certain sites, a better bookmark menuing system, and for me to figure out the RSS feed. I guess it’ll be a long goodbye to Firefox, but not an unhappy one. One wonders if its open-sourceness and popularity led to a critical mess of clunky code. I don’t know. It and I are done now.
Now, if I can figure out how to block Google’s geolocation, that would be ideal. Right now that seems like herpes: no cure, and evidently no one even trying or wanting to try. But we’ll see.