Something’s Changed – I’m Not the Same

One of the most difficult things for me to accept was an offhand remark from, I think it was my occupational therapist about two months after my injury: the person you were is gone.

I suppose I became rather defensive.

I think my response was something along the lines of, “I have all of the memories of self from a full lifetime, how can he be gone?! I’m right effing here!”

Now, looking back after two and a half years, I don’t think that she or any of the other therapists, nurses, neurologists, or physicians were quite as clear about how true and profound that statement was.

Yes, it hurt emotionally to hear it as if she was speaking of me as if I were dead. But thinking back, it was, for me, exactly what I needed to hear.

It should have been repeated.

Hidden Files on Mac?

The short-short version, thankfully:


Command + Shift + Period

You’re welcome.

Shows hidden files. Then the same thing to hide them again.

Only throwing it out here because I keep forgetting.

Why Hidden Files?

One of the questions might be: why do I have hidden files all over? Well, we know that they’re there, but extremely rarely need them to contribute to the visual clutter that inhibits the usability of the interface itself.

In some cases, certain things are important for your own local account to function properly. So, we simply hide them from view. The difference between Unix and Windows is that in Unix, it was decided long ago that you could simply hide an object by starting its name with a period.

In Windows? If I recall, it was a matter of going to the file’s Properties dialog, then ticking Hide. Oh, and then clicking OK.

Some real-world examples that you probably have on your own system now are things like .bashrc, .bash_profile (or .zprofile in the current age), maybe a directory called .ssh. There’s might also be a .Trash folder, which, as the name may suggest, is part of your user account’s Trash (wastebasket, Trash can, Recycle Bin, etc).

There could certainly be many, many more.

In several cases, mucking about with them can have unexpected consequences. So, leave them be unless you clearly understand what you’re doing — and have a back-up plan for when the unexpected occurs.

Presently, I need to go tweak a few configurations and would rather have visibility to them through the Finder instead of typing things into the Terminal.

Historic Methods

It’s far-easier with three-key trigram shortcut than it used to be!

Older OS X Versions

In previous versions of OS X, it could have been as “simple” as digging into the View Options pane of Finder (not Preferences!) then enabling the Show Hidden Files selector.

Legacy OS X

Or even much worse: pasting some guru-level commands into the terminal window:

defaults write AppleShowAllFiles TRUE

Then updating the running Finder process:

killall Finder

And an equally-complex process to disable it:

defaults write AppleShowAllFiles FALSE

And don’t forget to restart Finder:

killall Finder

Dark times, they were.

God, I miss the screaming.

Mainstream Academia?

The position that many in the mainstream tend to have is a belief that the Missoula Floods were a series of events that occurred over a period of millions of years.

The story goes something like this:

  • during an ice-age
  • the Northern ice cap on the planet — about a mile or two thick
  • part of the glacier melted
  • the meltwater was restrained by the same glacier
  • sufficient water was released to wear-away basalt
  • 150 coulees were washed out of the basalt bedrock
  • So the glacier was warmed enough to melt

Actually, from the current incarnation of the wiki article on the topic:

After each ice dam rupture, the waters of the lake would rush down the Clark Fork and the Columbia River, flooding much of eastern Washington and the Willamette Valley in western Oregon. After the rupture, the ice would reform, creating Glacial Lake Missoula again

No argument from me about the very broad time-frame; during the ice age. And, there’s no argument about the concept of ice melting… but that’s very much the limit of plausible.

Because “physics”.

How so?

How does a glacier exist in both a solid and liquid state? …for sufficient time for that much water to accumulate? …without re-freezing? …without the glacier itself simply melting away beneath it?

How would that much water exist in a state of thermal equilibrium for water to exist as both a liquid (in a reservoir) and solid (forming an ice-dam) simultaneously?

How much water would be needed to wear away basalt? That would most certainly need to be liquid. I get that, but it would be surrounded by ice?

The concept of the “Missoula Floods” would also tend to suggest that all of the coulees tended to originate from a single point (okay, an area) in the Northern Rocky Mountain range — through which all of the water passed.

I do wonder, what proxies have we collected that may corroborate the Missoula Floods hypothesis?

Srand Prix?

Haven’t seen this movie in about forty-two years. And I never noticed this back then, but, I gotta ask: what the heck is a “Srand Prix”?

“No! It says ‘Grand Prix’! Duh!”

It’s presented in Fraktur script, which was incredibly common in Germany until it was verboten by the Nazi party in 1941.

Anyway, that first letter that you may readily and quite erroneously interpret as a G is really an S.

In printed (not hand-script) Fraktur, for reference, here are the letters E-F-G-H-I:

And Q-R-S-T-U:

Context matters, of course. Yes, it’s just a movie. Yes, it’s just a musical. And, yes, it’s just entertainment.

Honestly, people readily understood what was intended.

And that’s what matters.

On Driving

Never draw attention to your dash cam. And never make absurd feigned threats about “this is being recorded!”. Ignore it. Also, saying so only demonstrates that you’re an arsehole. And, as I’ve said before, your dash cam is as much a witness of you as it is of someone else.

Use the brakes. Seriously. There is no situation where adding more energy is going to be better or safer.

Never swerve. Also, see above on brakes. When you swerve, you actually take your focus off of where you’re going. You can absolutely swerve into another vehicle. Also, when you swerve, you take away traction from braking. I know what you’re saying, “but what about the car behind me?!? he’s not going to stop!” Uh-huh… it’s not your responsibility to control the vehicle behind you… that’s its driver’s responsibility. Because…

Remember, it’s a minimum of “two-second following distance”. It’s not “two car-lengths” nor “one car length for every ten miles an hour”. It’s not any length of cars — Smart car? Ford LTD? What length of car?

It’s two seconds.

Why? Because that’s how long it will take to recognize and react while maintaining control of your own vehicle.

On dry roads, not in a curve, it’s two seconds.

And if you’ve “better reflexes than everyone else” — you haven’t.

It’s still two seconds.

It takes about half a second (½) to recognize and react to something; then it takes another half to a full second for the application of the brakes. It’ll also require about another half to a full second for the vehicle mass to shift forward (yes, really) and for the suspension to compress to then apply maximum braking.

If you’re doing the math, that’s 1½ to 2½ seconds. Call it about two seconds. And that two seconds passes much faster than you think. The old adage about counting “One-thousand one, one-thousand two” Still pretty effective at judging following distance.

If you’re guesstimating the distance to the car ahead of you (which you’re guessing wrong) you will still need two full seconds to respond to the unexpected.

Wet roads? Add another second.

Poor visibility? Another second.

Snow? Add another two seconds.

The accelerator can never get you out of trouble. See above on the topic of brakes. More energy doesn’t equal more safer.

A roundabout is not a race track or a competition. Driver-Ed and the testing process badly needs to incorporate roundabouts into their methods and expose people to them. The first time many new drivers encounter them is in the real world only after they’ve earned a license.

The horn is to alert other drivers, it’s not to be used a signaling device or, worse, to blast every road user and pedestrian within 500ft for ten effing seconds after the real or perceived threat has passed.

Also, the throttle on a motorcycle is not a signaling device. Great, you can twist a throttle and bounce the motor off of its rev-limiter. Engine noise is ubiquitous and quite easily ignored — we hear it all the time. If only there was something that had a unique sound that could draw attention to a threat?

Oh! I know! We could use a horn! And make it readily accessible within hands reach to the vehicle operator!

Never pull over to the inside (left) shoulder. Work your way over to the outside (right) shoulder. Obviously, opposite in lefthand drive countries. Move to the outside lane.

If you’ve been hit or bumped, do not get out and immediately inspect the damage. Show some compassion. Check first on the driver and passengers of the other car to see if they’re injured.

Never run to an accident. I can’t stress this enough. Look around for risks. Yes, move with intent and purpose. But never run. While you’re busy running across a three-lane interstate, other vehicles who didn’t see the incident are most certainly not expecting to see a person darting into traffic.

If there’s snow or ice visible on the road, slow down.

Never chase down somebody who ran from a collision. You have a dash cam — yes, I know they’re not ideal for capturing license plates at night — but only follow enough to improve the odds that the camera is going to capture sufficient video of the incident. Put another way, unless you are a police officer, do not chase down an offender. You’ve captured the video on camera. Stop and notify law enforcement and your insurance company and give them a completely unedited copy of the video.