An Addendum to the Introduction

Hello WordPress! It’s been a few weeks.

I don’t honestly remember if I’ve mentioned that I’m a graduate student; I don’t honestly remember if I updated the blog with the fact that I have a job now. I do know that I never did set a specific schedule of updates for this blog.

That was by design.

I find myself going through spurts of creativity, productivity and absolute mind-rending numbness.

From what I’m told, this is normal for a master’s student. That’s comforting, but not exactly the most useful thing in the world to know.

I currently have drafts with the following working titles:

On Reading, Passing, and Modern Day Transgender Experience
The Mystical Quality of “Author”
Education is My Job Not Your Privilege
The Oppressed Oppressing Fallacy
Ouch! My Privilege Hurts! A User’s Guide to Checking Privilege
On being Othered By Your Friends (Or, Why I Hurt Myself)
The Intersection of Gender Identity, Sexual Orientation and Romantic Configuration

Yeah, I’m totally a sex-positive gender-anarchy feminist. Uhm. Well, just judging from my other posts you know about how long these each will be. These posts take hours upon hours of work for me to do; I usually can finish the first draft in about 3 sittings of 3-6 hours each. I then edit them extensively, checking for privilege, bias and inappropriate outburst of emotion, trying to incorporate brevity into my naturally bombastic style.

Lately I’ve been very taken with the ideals of Aristotle rhetoric: Logos, Ethos and Pathos. I find that in order to cultivate a true base of Ethos, I need to prove that I will not inappropriately apply Pathos. To put these in laymen’s terms, if I want to be seen as a truthful and objective source, I need to keep emotional arguments (both arguments that use personal emotion to sway my audience and arguments intended to sway my audience’s emotions) sparingly.

In my graduate program we’re learning a lot about the psychological processing of diversity; where “isms” come from, how to diagnose and identify privilege and intolerance, the process of creation for our stereotypes, assessing ourselves and our learning styles using various techniques, accessing the Self as a tool of change, achieving a state of “being” instead of “doing” etc…. we’ve even talked a little bit about the conversational spectrum of argument to dialogue.

But we haven’t talked a lot about how to operate within that spectrum. Being who I am, I’ve been reading about rhetoric and oration (instead of schoolwork, oops!). The more I read, the more I’m making connections with writing style and the more difficult writing is becoming.

Because I see where I’m failing as a persuasive didact. As a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to my writing, this often causes idea paralysis.

I suppose what I’m saying is: writing is hard. Stick with me, folks, I’ll get there eventually, but I’m in a writing and self-reflection heavy master’s program, an intense position at my university that is really stretching the realms of my experience, and I’m in the process of achieving greater fiscal independence. I’ve got a full plate and, honestly, all of the different slices of life are drawing heavily on the skills and energy it takes to blog. In essence I’m getting the benefits of blogging without the need to write in a public forum.

I’m going to try to update this blog regularly, but the entire concept of “regular updating” usually relies on a comparison of time between posts. Instead, dear readers, I’m going to ask that we all step out of our comfort zone of time and space, and into a focus on “being” instead of “doing” for once; I will post only when that post is well crafted and READY to be seen. That’s what I will mean by regular. The time between posts will be variable, but the quality, reader, is what I’m aiming for when I say that I’m updating this blog regularly.

If you’re willing to take that leap with me, I can assure you, at the very least we’re going to have a pretty fun journey of self-discovery that will only end when our selves no longer exist or we decide to get off the train ride to stagnate. It’s the journey, not the destination, that defines us as the colloquialism goes.

Let’s make sure it’s a journey that spurs stories worth telling.

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About Michael Robinson

An eclectic person living in a world rife with binaries, opposition, anger and pain and trying to find the spectra, love, happiness and catharsis within.
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