April 4, 2020

No reason to die all tensed up.
Robert "Hoot" Gibson, Space Shuttle Atlantis commander, encouraging a casual stoicism (even as an unknown number of heat tiles had been knocked off)
via astronaut Mike Mullane's book "Riding Rockets"... I think this is a great attitude to have these days. Maybe I'm too blasé, and if I felt more immediately threatened, I'd behave all too emotionally myself. Or maybe it's that weird religiosity I grew up with that enhanced my ability to weed out feelings while they were still young sprouts. But overall, whatever is going to happen is going to happen whether you go forth singing and laughing when you can or making yourself sick with worry about things that may or may not happen, or swamped by empathy for things you can't control, and that weren't your fault.

Anger and fear are only useful insofar as they help us make smarter tactical decisions and wiser strategic ones. To the extent we can make the same decisions without them (admittedly, an uncertain proposition) the more we can live our lives fully, despite our circumstances.

Another quote comes to mind:
Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms--to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way.
Viktor Frankl
Also his thought "When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves."

UDPATE: former dorm-mate Mike Maines said this reminds me of one his favorite quotes which I found as:
Call on God, but row away from the rocks.
Hunter S. Thompson
(Mike cited it as "Trust in" but the core message is there)
On my devblog The Dumbness of Smartquotes - realized the smartquotes were breaking my phrase search on my blog, and then some further thoughts on autocorrect in general
Bad News Wrapped in Protein: Inside the Coronavirus Genome - deep dive into this f***er. The article reminds me of computer program analysis/disassembly I've seen. Bums me out that despite all our great technology, we can't simulate a cell well enough to get the answer to some of those questions...