Monday, July 02, 2007


Thinking out loud about what I'm doing here. The blog started as a way to get some stuff out of my system. To take some dark stuff out of my head and let other people poke at it for awhile. It hasn't been able to be all dark stuff, though, because my life is beautiful and fun and that needs to be shared as well.

Sometimes you have to look at yourself from outside and one way to do that is to read old journals, diaries and blogs. Not for the words or what seemed important at the time. Look for the things that pop up again and again. Those are the themes that are important to you over time.

CRIMINALS- is a big theme here. Not crime so much- I rarely deal with crime scenes or criminal investigations- but how criminals think, how they see themselves, how they do what they do both physically/tactically and emotionally/cognitively.

VIOLENCE- goes hand in hand with criminals and it plays off of another theme, martial arts. Violence fascinates me because it is such a huge part of our culture and our identity and yet so few people know anything about it.

COP STUFF- This ties in, too. Like violence, everyone thinks that they know something about it, but generally their sources have been nothing but entertainment. When this comes up it is almost always because someone publicly (often on the news) made a statement that is brain dead in the reality of the job. For some reason I feel compelled to explain because, if this was the world of TV cop-dramas, fiction and Dr. Phil, the statement might work. Too many people feel that this world is 'pretty much like' TV. They would never say that and deny it on direct question... but it shows in who they listen to and what they choose to believe.

MARTIAL ARTS- It started with Judo over twenty-five years ago and it has been an obsession, and an addiction for almost all of that time. For the last fifteen years, it's been interacting with violence and leaving me wondering- what is martial arts? What does it try to be? What does that mean? Is it about the student in the class or the same student in an ambush? Or is it about the instructor and the revenues? Or the lineage? How much do the skills apply to violence? The tactics? The mindset(s)? The world view?

TEACHING- and this feeds off of MA: is there a better way to teach violence? What to keep and discard from a MA curriculum (and the always very real possibility that if I discard something it is not because of its failures but maybe because I don't understand it yet). How do you get things into someone else's head? The amazing things you learn in the process of teaching.

FUNNY STORIES- I can't put them all here. Many cool things happen almost every day. Hmmm, a clue. Humor is on the board but a low value item for Rory.

TRUE LOVE- I could put much more here than I do. This isn't a low priority as much as I am a selfish and private creature. With both love and friends my life often feels like a work of juvenile fiction. It's that good. Move along citizens, nothing to see here.

HOW DIFFERENT...These are some of the things I puzzle over the most. I'm aware that I don't think like everyone else. My lovely wife says, "You need to understand, Rory was raised by coyotes." A deputy I worked with for a long time used to tell rookies, "Sarge is what happens when you raise a kid without television." How much is experience? How much a probable Asberger's Syndrome? When I see the world one way and the rest of the world doesn't, who is right? (Me, of course. Duh.) Can I explain precisely where the differences arose and what they mean? Would it help if I did?

Is there more? Could be, there are many things I'm interested in: herbal medicine, emergency medicine, small farming, history, hiking, climbing, diving, caving, paragliding, writing, fatherhood, animals... on and on.

Any big themes I've missed here, things so obvious that I can't see them?


Anonymous said...

"How much a probable Asberger's Syndrome?"

Had to look it up, of course..
From Wikipedia -- "... lacked nonverbal communication skills, failed to demonstrate empathy with their peers, and were physically clumsy."

Don't think so...


Kai Jones said...

I wish I could get even more people reading your blog, because that first one alone is incredibly valuable. Just recognizing that criminals really don't think the way you and I do (for you and I equal to so many of my more liberal friends and acquaintances) might help them understand my positions better. It's probably too much to hope that it would change theirs, though!

Anonymous said...

Just a thought on the violence theme - as much as we all talk about love, peace, harmony, what humans really want is intense emotionality, and there is no more intense emotion that the fear/love/joy/sadness of combat, of aggressive interactions. I think humans need it to evolve and when the conflict/challenges requiring violent interactions are not there, we turn the need inward. Thus, child abuse, suicide bombers, war, Darfur. Deep meditation over many years doesn't change this need, it just lets you understand it better and perhaps redirect the energy. Criminals exhibit this energy naturally and unashamedly - burglaries, robberies, murder is really not only no big deal to them, but actually fun (to them). Because humans only do things because, a) they are forced to do it or b) because it's fun (to them).

Jorvik said...

good stuff

Matt Withers said...

I do think you missed out on the biggest theme in your writing. To me the thread that runs through it all is the concept of Reality vs. Perception. No matter what you are writing about, it seems it is done with the intent to remove as many filters as possible. To strip things down, clarify what is unassailable vs. what we've simply fallen into the habit of telling ourselves; and thus in a very real sense try to find what are the real, simple truths behind a world we are inclined to view as breathlessly complex.

Rory said...

Thanks, Matt. I was hoping someone could point out my big blindspot.