Small World Potential

May 27th, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink

So you run into someone you know unexpectedly — total coincidence! It’s a small world, right?

Well, if *your* world is small, perhaps you should go out and meet new people. Because you see, the world didn’t change its size based on who you re-met. Instead *it was you who spent your small world potential* by churning through the same social orbit.

By contrast, every time you meet someone new, you increase your small world potential by seeding the possibility of re-meeting this person. I postulate that with practice, it’s possible to accumulate this potential and use it like rocket fuel to overcome gravity and propel oneself into stable orbit.

This way, you no longer expend small world potential, but derive energy from the motion of the sociolestial spheres. In practice, this means that you can stop having a home (gravitational constraint) but live as a fully potentiated large world nomad without wearing out welcomes, rather bathing your perpetually grateful series of hosts with your comet tails and new found interconnectivity.

This thought crystalized when a certain character was described to me. Not everyone has this capacity. Incidentally, this [character]( is now staying with [us]( for a month.

Corrupt power structure, or Benevolent Dictatorship?

May 24th, 2008 § 2 comments § permalink

fifteen minutes before the opening of the afternoon visa session, i joined the loose assemblage of peoples around the chinese consulate. returning veterans of the morning session clued me in:

i must queue on the right
for the deli machine
which dispenses the numbers
that determine the order
of being seen.

so, i took my place by the entrance, seemingly at the head of the line. yet before i know it, there were 20 people competing for the spot i had occupied alone, an amalgam of me and 19 elderly chinese.

on the other side of the glass doors two security guards were preparing for the onslaught. i could make out the russian names on their tags. the shorter one ‘A.’ had braces, the other ‘R.’ a cigarette in his mouth, and neither was older than 20. their clothes were oversized and since they huddled behind the machine which dispenses the numbers, i imagined them as meat clerks by the deli counter.

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May 2nd, 2008 § 0 comments § permalink


For the summer of 2008, I hold the post of visiting fellow at Peking University in Beijing, China. Consequently, the present focus of the blog is to share this experience in real time. In this regard I also point you to my friend [Eric Fogg’s Blog](


My goal is to share original content in the form of discrete vignettes. The style aims at communicating the revelation in asynchronous real time as to share the pleasure of first discovery, that elusive eureka orgasm.


Science occupies most of my time. I want to share my fascination with science through explanatory entries, initially focused on what humans on the social plane can learn from biology of molecules.

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