Collab with @clayboyn: Photography and Philosophy

8 days ago
68 in blog

Yesterday I read a post by @clayboyn, a guy who has been, for the most part, using steemit as a journal of self-actualization and a documentation of self-improvement. In this particular post he posed seventeen questions and as I began to answer them I realized that my answers could make up their own post. So make my own post is what I decided to do.



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In the interest of encouraging others to read his post I'm not listing his questions, only my answers. Also I've decided to choose only eight of them, and I think they would make a good challenge for others, so here's what I propose:

Go to @clayboyn's post and choose at least five questions to answer, make your own post of these answers, and an answer to mine, and at the end, pose a question of your own.

Also, to add further value to this post I'm including photos of sunsets over Seneca Lake that I took over the span of three evenings last week. The first set was at the end of a beautiful day, the second was in the midst of a thunderstorm (I really hoped to capture a lightning bolt, alas it eluded me) and the third was after the sun had already gone down, the rest of the sky darkening into night as the colors hung on. Answers to the questions I selected will be under each picture.



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I do hope you enjoy both the mental and visual stimulation provided by the words and images below.



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Could the only way to be sane in an insane world actually require being crazy enough to do what everyone else thinks is impossible?

The word impossible is tied with the word I dislike the most- can't. For me they are the real curse words. Whether doing things deemed impossible makes you crazy in the eyes of the world but sane in actuality I couldn't say with certainty, but it sounds reasonable to me.



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What if people need attention because they are scared to pay attention to themselves?

I've thought about this only with slightly different wording, in fact I've even had a recent conversation about this with a good friend. It does seem as though people who can't stand to be alone tend to be those whose lives are ruled by fear. Of outside forces yes, but in my opinion that's not the root of their terror. It's more an inability to face what is on the inside because they know they won't like what they see. The biggest problem with that is they will never have the opportunity to better themselves because without introspection, without looking in that mirror, they'll never know what would be needed to improve.

Most of these types tend to have the finger pointing victim mentality as well. Everything is someone else's fault and the whole world is against them "whoa is me". To be honest as much as I love people, those with a victim mentality I find very difficult to deal with.



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What if every single one of us is just a fractured thought in the mind of one being and we call it God?

Again, I've definitely thought of this but also in a slightly different way. I imagine the possibility that we are all characters in an elaborate and epic series of novels that were brought to life on a grand stage made up of water and rock and soil. There are certain things I was taught in Sunday School that have always stuck with me, and one of them was about King David. The guy was a bit of a screw up. He coveted his neighbor's wife so he sent the man to the front lines of a battle for fuck sake.

And yet we get the impression he was the kind of guy you'd like to hang out with, he danced and sang and had a blast at the parties he threw. And God loved his arse (not his literal arse...well he could have, in fact @therealpaul might argue that point ) but really, there are a number of verses to make it clear that David was one of God's favorites, calling him "a man after His own heart". In fact if you google it, you'll find countless pages of people attempting to explain why God loved this 'sinful, imperfect' man so much.

And I get it. Because I've written quite a few characters like David, and they're my favorites too. In fact being a novel writer gives me a unique perspective in this, because the characters are very real to me, every aspect of the stories I write are real to me.

Unlike my novels however, we aren't fictional but rather spirit beings, each spirit a piece of the ultimate spirit that is God or Source.



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What if greed is just a lack of self worth?

I've certainly known people who seem to need material things to prove they are 'somebody'. Who define themselves by their expensive cars, houses, the elaborate vacations they take. And they are never satisfied, they always want the more expensive car, house, etc. And they are generally never more than momentarily or superficially happy.

I find that those who are content with little are far more satisfied and happy with life overall.

That isn't to say that there are no wealthy people who are happy and that all people who have little are content, it's more about what you actually need to be happy. If you can be satisfied in all of the circumstances you find yourself in, you're more likely to have a pretty solid sense of self-worth.



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Is any one person greater than any other person?

This is interesting because I am currently going through some readjustments on my feelings about this. I think in the overall grand scheme of things, looking at people from the perspective of a God for instance, the differences between us, for the most part, would be so minuscule that the answer would definitely be no. Much like the way we would view an ant colony. There might be that one ant in a million who is so advanced that they stand out, but other than that exception they all appear the same.

From a much smaller and egotistical perspective, and leaving myself out of the equation, I have to admit that my answer to that would be yes. What I mean by leaving myself out is that even if I didn't think that I was greater or better, I would definitely find myself thinking that 'fric' is greater or better than 'frac'. And for many different reasons, such as I might think that fric is more enlightened or makes better choices or is just simply more likable than frac. But I've put myself in a conundrum because I'm not actually taking myself from the equation, am I? As it is myself that has determined that one individual's qualities is greater than another's.



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Does it bother you to not know the answer to something?

Absolutely. While I've accepted that there are some things I may never learn the answer to while I'm in this material realm inhabiting this physical body, I will always be on a quest for knowledge, seeking the answers to things great and small, right up until I take my last breath.



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Is it more or less bothersome to be wrong about what you thought the answer was?

Well that would depend on the question, wouldn't it? Are you trying to determine whether being wrong in general is bothersome to someone or being wrong about something specific?

If, for example, I was wrong about the date of a distant acquaintance's birthday and I missed it, likely they wouldn't notice I missed it therefore it wouldn't bother me. If I were wrong about the date of a close friend's birthday and I missed it, I would be bothered because I might have hurt their feelings in doing so.

And that might be a silly example, but it's one out of thousands from silly to serious that could be taken from this question.



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What if an empath is just the universal balance to a psychopath?

I definitely lean toward this being the case. I believe this particular realm of existence is all about balance, such as there must be an Adolf Hitler to be a Mother Theresa. (I'm using Hitler in the way of 'common knowledge', whether he was different than what the history books tell us is a question for another day)



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And here's my question:

There are many words in the English language that sound the same though they have been given different meanings. Do you think this is coincidence or intentional? If intentional, for what purpose?

(examples: world and whirled; I and eye)



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Okay everyone, that concludes my collab with clayboyn. If you decide to join in the fun and make a post of your own, feel free to link it in this comment section. Hope to see you here!



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65
  ·  8 days ago

Awesome!!! Resteemed

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68
  ·  8 days ago

Sweet! I love inspiring the word awesome (and resteemed haha)

64
  ·  8 days ago

I think multiple meaning of words exist mainly due to the perspective of people that originally spoke other languages adapting to the English language and carrying over some of their old spellings/meanings. I would also consider that the English language is, to my knowledge, considered the hardest language to learn due to this and I wonder if it was kept confusing intentionally for some to take advantage of other's lack of understanding or to provide "loopholes" to their own shifting ideals and perspectives. Perhaps having the ability to always try to convince someone they took what you said out of context due to the multiple definitions and spelling of words provides a layer of "safety" to those that don't speak honestly. On the contrary, it can allow for some profound knowledge to be wrapped in a subtle package that reveals itself over time. I for one love wordplay and perhaps if English wasn't my birth language I wouldn't have had as many tools to use to convey meaning.

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68
  ·  8 days ago

Interesting possibilities. Also more optimistic than I tend to be about such things, though I scorn labels and would not accept such things as Conspiracy Theorist, a bit of research on the subject leads me to something similar to what you said about confusion, only for a more insidious and tyrannical reasoning. First there is law, and there is an entirely other language devoted to that. When Bill Clinton said at his famous trial, it depends on which definition of "is" is being used, well the reason for that is there are nine different definitions of the word is in law. Also the word must in law means may or may not...not quite what we were taught.
Also I tend to think about how once upon a time the Bible wasn't allowed into the hands of the common man, only priests and scribes could read it. The Bible is a book of law itself that's still used in that way to this day. (Hell is a debtor's prison under the court of eschequer according to Black's Law dictionary-- not an esoteric afterlife but a physical place where they once threw people in jail for unfulfillment of debts) Now of course everyone can own a bible, so what changed? They now deem us fit to read the book? Or perhaps they altered the meaning of the words, made doctrines out of it, that distorted it so much that it no longer matters whether we have it or not, since we don't comprehend a word of it.

Of course when you're not talking in an official capacity, say amongst friends, then words mean exactly what you agree on them to mean. But think about this one- spell. Spelling. Isn't it interesting that the same word used for casting magical incantations is used in how we put letters together? Letters which are really just symbols.

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64
  ·  8 days ago

With some good spelling we can weave illusions and control narratives and perspectives eh? :) Makes you wonder.

68
  ·  8 days ago

Love this whole idea... did read @clayboyn's post yesterday and found myself inspired to write about each question raised... then got sidetracked by... "oh, shiny!" but now I am reminded again.

Seems like there were more "deep thoughts" types of posts when I first joined, six months ago...

Oh... on "English" and words... what I find interesting is how many words there are in the English language. I'm Danish by birth, and English is not my native tongue although it has been my primary writing language for 30+ years. English seems to create "new" words for many concepts; in Danish "new" words are typically compound words created out of existing words... a bit hard to explain... but for example, we might have had a blanket ("tæppe"), then somebody put a similar piece of textile on the floor and in English we call it a "rug," while in Danish they took the existing words for "floor" and "blanket" and made a rug a "floor blanket" ("gulvtæppe").

So if you extract all Danish words to their "root form" there's only about 1/4 as many words as in English. The many "similar sounds" in the English language is part of what gave rise to the truism (among non-native speakers, I suppose) that "English is easy to learn, but hard to master."

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68
  ·  8 days ago

To take the word blanket and add floor to it creating gulvtæppe makes so much more logical sense then to make up a whole new word. I homeschool my children and by far the most difficult time was in teaching them how to read. There are so many exceptions, basically so many words you simply have to memorize because they follow no reasoning.

I've been fascinated by the concept of words ever since my husband pointed out just a couple of simple things to me. The word spell. Why would they use a word that means incantation for stringing letters together to make words. Or really, letters are symbols, so stringing symbols together. We spell or are spelling words. That struck me. Also, a television term- programming. Stay tuned for your regular programming. Thought of in a certain way that's rather creepy :)

71
  ·  8 days ago

I, eye and AYE!

Aye to the above!

I think being content within yourself is the ultimate key to happiness. To many people look to the outside when it all comes from that wee bit inside.

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68
  ·  8 days ago

And I most certainly agree with that :)

Did you watch Louie's bit on being broke? Haha, I really laughed over the minus ten dollars bit, having less than no money hahaha!
Do your banks also charge a 'poor tax'? That's what we call it. Because if you overdraft on your account, or write a check that there are 'insufficient funds' to cover, they will most definitely charge you for it here :)

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71
  ·  8 days ago

I watched it yeah. Its so true.

Our banks are exactly like that, the more you have the nicer they treat you and the less you have the worse it gets. Here the charges can mount up ridiculously quickly. I had such an argument when I was ypounger over there not being enough funds in my account for a debit payment. They refused to pay it, charged me £35 quid for the pleasure of not paying it then charge me 5% daily until there was enough to pay it. I was very cross!

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68
  ·  8 days ago

Yep, that's exactly the way it goes here too, only not at a percentage I think it's a flat rate of something insane like 35 for the first overdraft and 25 bucks a day until you pay it, meanwhile if you were already struggling to the point you overdrafted how are you coming up with that kind of accumulation? It's nuts. I quit using a bank for years because of a scenario like that one, stuck with pre paid visas and cash, now a bitpay card (love). Though I am going to have to cave and get another account sadly. Did I tell you I published a book? Not one I've put on steemit. Anyway, it needs to be put up on amazon but alas the account must come first. My mom insists "Hon, you are much older and wiser, I'm sure you will not have any trouble with overdrafting at this stage in your life". Ha! The only reason that's true is because I will only use it for direct deposit and cash withdrawal, no automatic billpays or I'm bound to forget about one and think I have more in there then I do.

Okay, gotta get off that depressing annoying subject, haha! Talk about @jedau's suggested response to spammers instead (video below), and how I have the ghostbusters theme playing in my head for spambusters. When my brain is working more optimally maybe I'll make up a jingle :)

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71
  ·  8 days ago

Hahahahha. Unacceptable!!

Thats ace. Iwill have to use it.

Yeah its horrible. If you end up in a situation where you dont have much its like they conspire you to be ground down further!

That is fab news! As soon as it is out on Amazon I shall gladly buy it. I might even review it with a colourful review. I used to do such things on amazon :O)

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68
  ·  8 days ago

I must warn you, that the particular book I published is...well in general I would say it caters to women. My brother and hubby read it and enjoyed it however, but it is definitely not something they would ever read if it weren't mine. But my bro assures me that while it may tailor to the female crowd, my characters and story are entertaining enough for anyone-- butttt, lots of sex, lots and lots of it, much worse than reborn and renewal. I initially wrote it as an experiment intended to submit to Harlequin romance. They were promoting new authors at the time and looking for steamy. Problem is that they wanted two hundred pages or less, and initially I did accomplish this, but the story was shit. Wasn't developed enough to be a good story. So I gave up on that and decided on a challenge for myself- can I turn this into a book I'd like to read. I accomplished that, several of my girlfriends have read and loved it, in fact two of them have read it twice so that was a nice compliment, and they want me to write a sequel of some kind :)

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71
  ·  8 days ago

Steamy..... or steemy!!! hehe.

That is a fair warning but I would buy it anyway. I might even read it through snorting nostrils and harrumphing noises of disdain at this sex nonsense. And lots of it you say. Goodness me. Perhaps I shall form a protest group at such perfidy!!! :OD

68
  ·  8 days ago

haha I don't know what those two do, the Bible God and his boy David, but in that piece that you nicely linked, I depicted God as a sort of sexually-omnipresent (a complete slut) heterosexual hermaphrodite, so she/he might like some David butt-- none of my business though!

I figured out and matched some of the questions from @clayboyn's post that you answered, I think, and then I thought that some of the questions rather neatly answered themselves, while provoking some quick introspection at the same time. I liked your way of answering these, your answers sound like mine might sound, and I'm the one in your choir exclaiming loudly "that's right!" and "praise be!" while you sort it all here. Those other questions will take more thought, though.

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68
  ·  8 days ago

lol, well in the lessons from church God is portrayed as a 'perfect' being, and their definition of perfect excludes sex of any kind. Same went for Jesus, a completely celibate man says they. In particular since they consider it a sin for a man and woman to have sex outside of the construct of marriage, (and for men to be with men and women to be with women etc. etc.)and since Jesus was never married and he was without sin, well you get the picture. No, what I was taught was God loved David because he was constantly apologizing to or praising God, depending on the circumstance. But even when I had the language all wrong I still didn't get that out of it, seemed to me God liked him simply because he was likable. Despite having his neighbor killed to be with the wife lol. (Bathsheba)

Actually there were quite a few questions in that post that were worded in a way that was too vague, we discussed it last morning and he altered them for the sake of me directing people over there. Generally he writes his posts for himself and if others like it great, in which case it wouldn't have mattered, but if others were going to take a stab at answering them, well, it made it easier for them to be answerable lol. Truthfully I like the way he reconstructed quite a few of them and might have chosen them to answer instead, but I'd already finished this and I figured it was long enough.

It makes me really warm and fuzzy that you feel you would have answered similarly :)

Did you happen to take a look down this comment section? My question elicited some vastly differing answers, one end of the spectrum to the other :)

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68
  ·  7 days ago

I enjoy the type of question that asks 'what if', then presents an unorthodox description of the true situation in the world- any rhetorical question that inspires a look inside of ourselves is a productive venture I think, even if the only 'answer' to the question is to agree that there is truth in it's meaning.

I did see the variety of comments, by the time I came along your wise readers had already solved a world of mysteries. I especially noted the language topic even touching on the sound and intent of words being potent in creation, aside from the various spell-ings of the English words. It's been suggested, even in modern physics, that the universe is held together cymatically by an enormous sound, so the ideas about how words and their sounds can change reality are always on the tip of my tongue, it was nice to see it covered here.

69
  ·  8 days ago

you can blame the romans, saxons, norse, french, and a bunch more invaders taking over the britannia and inserting their words and grammar rules into what we call english...but it's mostly the latin influences fault and it's a dead language too! mix latin and old english together, they are similar only because they share the same alphabet and you get a messy language called english...the british blame americans for ruining the english language...i laugh because our shared english language is a hodgepodge of different languages.

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68
  ·  8 days ago

It definitely is a hodgepodge. I never did think much of it growing up, shrugged it off as a coincidence, and perhaps that's the case. But it's the word spell that gets me. Though it's actually spelled, lol, the same for both. That we're spelling words, putting these symbols together in a certain way, I can't help but think of sorcery in terms of that now :)

65
  ·  8 days ago

A lot of stuff to unpack here, so I'll focus on the one that really struck me. The universe is filled with balance, every aspect has an equal amount of opposites to balance them out. Matter has dark matter, light has dark, and so on. Ridding something of the negative aspects wouldn't work as there is always something that would take its place. Law of conservation of energy and all that. As @therealpaul put it, we are all energy anyway, so I guess that's why it effects us. We just have to be more compassionate so that we could strike that perfect balance.

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68
  ·  8 days ago

I know, it's been awhile since I put on my philosopher's hat :) Yes, balance definitely appears to be what this universe strives for, yin and yang :)

56
  ·  8 days ago

There are many words in the English language that sound the same though they have been given different meanings. Do you think this is coincidence or intentional? If intentional, for what purpose?

(examples: world and whirled; I and eye)

I'm going with coincidence. Basically because English is such a mongrel language, we have borrowed and stolen from everybody. Meanings and spellings have changed over time.

From the two random examples you gave, world is from the Old English weorold which is from the Old Norse verold ("age of man") but whirled comes from the Middle English whirlen from the Old Norse hvirfla ("turning/revolving/circuit").

And I comes from the Old English ic borrowed from Old Norse ek which stole from the Latin ego. But eye is from the Old English ege/eage from Gothic augo from the Sanskrit akshi and the Greek opsis ("a sight").

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68
  ·  8 days ago

Thank you for the break down :) Though I think I should have also included some examples of words that sound and are spelled the same but mean different things...like spell/spelling- the way we put these symbols together to form words on the one hand and sorcery or magic or an incantation on the other. I bring that one up a lot, it just strikes me as odd.

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56
  ·  8 days ago

That can also be a coincidence. My surname is Norwegian. Centuries ago, used to be much longer. It is also an Ashkenazi surname that used to be longer in a different way. Same spelling, completely different roots.

53
  ·  8 days ago

Words which sound the same but have been given different meanings are done so for a specific purpose. It is the sound and intent of the speaker which directs this energy and gives or takes power.
Shaman and curanderos who were my mentors have repeatedly demonstrated this technique to me.
Different spelling may be meant to confuse.

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68
  ·  8 days ago

Yes, I definitely think it's done by design. That's interesting, that the alliterations would mean something unique, though I definitely believe in intent.

I have to agree with that last as well :)

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53
  ·  8 days ago

Listen to the sounds as you observe these words:
After the weak end, comes Monday mourning where you work and urn your living, until you pay off your mortgage [death pledge](french etymology). One of my favorites is: how can a house burn up as it burns down? Seems the more you dig, the stranger the english language becomes.

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68
  ·  8 days ago

That's awesome, I am definitely going to use that. Yes, I actually did know about the death pledge, my husband was probably the first person to ever draw up a paper called 'show me the note' for a friend in florida. (If you've heard of that, I'm not actually exaggerating lol) Basically it demanded that the bank/original creditor produce the original document with the original ink signature that this friend signed for his death pledge. Unsurprisingly he received a letter stating that it had been 'lost or destroyed'. I'm guessing you know that it's the signature that's of value.

My husband when down a very long trail starting with black's law and...the other names are alluding me at present. Effectively he became a 'backyard lawyer'. Did not charge for his services to be clear, this was at a time when it became apparent that every dollar or fiat note you have is one that came from your 'neighbor's' pocket. A system set up so you are at constant war with one another.

The more you dig, the stranger it all gets :)

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53
  ·  8 days ago

We are on the same page my lovely. I am familiar with black magic law dictionary and maritime law. Kudos to your husband too.

69
  ·  8 days ago

I don't think the think the development of similar sounding words that have different meanings is intentional. I think it's a combination of coincidences, mistakes, misunderstandings, interpretations, etc that produce the words we have. Just like it's a funny coincidence that impossible can spell I'm possible.

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68
  ·  8 days ago

It fascinates me how differently people answered that question. The one I thought of putting in there but didn't, and instead keep mentioning here in the comment section is a word you happened to use- spell. Though in the case of that word the spelling is the exact same. Spell/spelling as an incantation associated with magic, sorcery witchcraft. And spell/spelling the order in which we put these symbols of letters together. Odd coincidence, that.

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69
  ·  7 days ago

Spell is an interesting example. Having lived abroad for a while now and watching the way English gets adapted into Japanese, I fired from the hip with my comment yesterday. Having read your comment thread and thinking about it a little more, the need to speak in codes would definitely promote an intentional affiliation of deifferent meanings to certain words, as you said eye and I. On a large scale, though, I think the way words are adopted into mainstream language from different regions and small groups depends a lot on chance. So, even if there is intention at some point, eventually, I think that largely loses out in the end to luck and chance.

So many words in Japanese these days, like English, come from French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Korean, Chinese, etc. and in many cases, because they are written with specific characters, people here assume they're origins are English. I often get asked what such and such a word means and I have no idea because it's actually not an English word.

38
  ·  8 days ago

For me, i think those English words that sound the same are coincidence. FOR EXAMPLE : THEY, THE. The both sound the same but have different meanings. It's Just a coincidence, I don,t believe it's intentional.
Educative post, I'm now following you.

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68
  ·  8 days ago

I feel like I should do a poll on this now, haha, I definitely have a number of 'those in favor of coincidence' and then also 'those in favor of intentional'

Thank you!!

49
  ·  8 days ago

beer and bear :D :D too :D

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68
  ·  8 days ago

LOL. Though the way we pronounce those words is with a long e for beer and a short e, or closer to an A sound for bear. Actually it would be bare and bear that sounded the same. But I still like where your mind took you (and love a good beer ;)

54
  ·  8 days ago

amazing pictures

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68
  ·  8 days ago

Thank you :)

69
  ·  8 days ago

i resteemed cause i don't want to lose this post <3

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68
  ·  8 days ago

That's nice to hear :) I feel like we first met in a post by @son-of-satire, or maybe his alt account eddard, who is definitely predisposed toward thought pieces. He was MIA for awhile, but he's back now.