From the monthly archives:

October 2011


by Henk ter Heide on Monday October 31, 2011

in Blogging

Serendipity – The interesting stuff you find while looking for something else – must be one of the best words in the English language.
It’s also a necessity on the internet.
How else would you find all those interesting sites you never knew existed.

I don’t remember what I was googling a few weeks ago when I came across a site that could calculate how much any given site could earn by advertising.
Ever wanted to know what is making? A killing I should expect.
I couldn’t resist entering the url for this site and see what I’m missing out of.
It turns out that I could earn nearly 2 euro a day. 60 euro a month.
Which is just enough to buy me lunch in my day job.
Hardly worth the effort of adding the codes.

But thinking about a little more I realized that this was hardly a fair judgement.
This site has never been more that a distraction.
I’ve posted articles about drawing, articles about other peoples art and stories.
But never for more then a few weeks in a row.
After a few weeks I get side tracked by some other interest and don’t come back for a few months.
I never put in the work needed to get thousands of readers.

It could be interesting to figure out what I could do with this site.
And to figure out what I want to do with this site.

As you’ll have seen I entered the code for advertising a few days ago.
I also had a nice surprise.
In 2008 I experimented with ads for a while. After earning a few cents I lost interest and took them of my site.
I did leave them on my search results page, but forgot all about them.
Turns out that I earned 22 euro in 2009 and 2010.

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Learning to fear

by Henk ter Heide on Sunday October 30, 2011

in Personal

Twenty years ago I stopped looking around me.
I wonder what happened.

Twenty years ago I worked at boarding houses.

At one time we had four types of boarding houses in the Netherlands: Boarding houses for abused children, boarding houses for the mentally disabled, boarding houses for people with psychotic problems and boarding houses for the physically disabled.

I worked at the first two types.
Not very long though. About three months at the first type and about four and the second.
Especially the first boarding house caused a lot of problems.

People told me that that must mean that I was abused as a child and I believed them.
Why wouldn’t I.
In my youth I have lived in a boarding house for a few years and never got a straight answer as to why I had to live there.
So this was as good an explanation as any.

In hopes to solve the problems I found myself a shrink. Who told me that I had very severe problems that where caused by the fear that resulted from the child abuse I had experienced in my youth.
The fact that I did not actually experienced that fear seemed a measure the depth of my fear.
From the large amount of problems I had, he deduced that I must have been the victim of one of the worst cases of child abuse he ever witnessed.

The only way to solve my problems would be to learn to feel the fear.
To learn to live with the fear.
To learn which parts of the abuse caused the fear.
To go with the fear and to go against the fear.
To eat and drink fear.
And at some point I would survive the fear.

So that what I’ve been doing for the last twenty years.

Only this morning I realized that it was all wrong.
I was never abused. Autism was misdiagnosed forty years ago.
Which lead to my placement at a boarding house for abused children.

Which actually was a good thing.
Abused children need a lot of structure. Just like autistic children.
So at that boarding house life was much more structured that my parents ever could have managed.
I loved it there.
It was the one place where I always felt save.

So in my mid twenties not knowing what was wrong with me and not knowing what to do to feel save. I chose to go back to the one place I felt save and go and work at boarding houses.
The thing is. I wasn’t the only one making that decision.
A lot of the people who lived at boarding houses in their youth at some point decided that they wanted to work a boarding house.
But must of those people where actually abused as a child.

And of course almost nobody knew anything about autism twenty years ago…

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by Henk ter Heide on Saturday October 29, 2011

in Stories

I’m not a poet. Sadly.
About 20 years ago I wrote short stories. Very short stories. About funny events I ran into.
It stopped after a while.
Not sure if that was because funny events stopped or that I just stopped looking.

The lather probably.

I’m not really sure why I stopped looking.
For some reason my life became much heavier. Sadder. More depressed.

But that was then. Now is now.
I should again start looking around me.
Searching for that lovely yellow, red and brown tree.
Feasting in autumns colors.
Feasting in the joy of life.

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Free writing 1

by Henk ter Heide on Friday October 28, 2011

in Free writing

one two and that is three blossoms are hanging on a tree
goals of writing free
mostly to become a better writer
and to find subjects to write about
and to find a way to free my mind

blossoms apple be applebee. is this a word. apparently not because the spell checker protests.
and so my mind isn’t racing. my mind is only racing when I’m not behind my keyboard. and that is the point of free writing. hoping to find a way to get my mind racing when I am behind my keyboard.

there is a bird flying through the air. or does this sound as though the bird is exploding.

I walked away for a few hours hoping I would get inspired to write some more.
But the only way to do this is just do it.
Just sit here until I’ve written a few pages worth of text.

Knowing what I’m writing about is not really the object at this point. just writing.

I’ve tried this before. But since I never knew what I was writing about I was tempted to just write about the fact that I didn’t know what I was writing about.
Which is very boring.
Of course this was just in Word. So nobody but myself ever read it. Which on the one hand meant that I could get away with it. But of course it also meant that I didn’t do it for very long. It always felt as a experiment that went wrong.

Now I want to try to just type anything that comes to mind. There doesn’t have to be any story line to it. Actually it doesn’t even have to be real words. I could just make them up if I wanted.

tree apartment building car people who are people is a song by barbra streisand if I’m not mistaken. this spell checker doesn’t seem to know who streisand is.
looking at the world I see something. I’m not sure what it is I’m seeing. Or even whether I’m seeing anything. It just felt like a nice sentence.

In front of my on my desk I have several objects. I few pens, pencils a what do you call it. A thing to make photos with.
The strange thing is that when I’m not trying to write my words down I’m quite good in talking English to myself. I even tier myself talking to myself for no good reason. But when I try to write it down I can’t remember what objects are called.
I’m sure that if I go back to watching TV I’ll remember within a few minutes what you call the object you use to make pictures.
But for the life of me. For the moment I can’t.
And there it is. A camera of course.

Of course this also sums up the reason for this free writing practice.
Usually I spend whole days thinking about how I’m going to write something in this blog. Instead of just thinking up a subject and then writing the post when I’m sitting behind the pc.
It means that if I don’t have the time during my working day to think about the post I want to write, I don’t write it. Because I’m afraid that I will not know what to say by the time I get behind my pc.
Thinks would be much easier, and probably more fun, if I could think of a subject during the day and then trust myself enough to write the post when I’m sitting behind my pc.

Apples eggs and other stuff you can use to make a dish of food that you can eat.
Actually I would like something to eat. Not that I’m hungry or so, but I would just love to leave my house and go to the snack bar and have them make me something to.
I think this is called procrastination.
Let’s not do that.

By the way, I’ve turned commenting of.
Seth Godin advised that for people who are trying to free write on a blog. And it seems like good advise.
Just writing what pops into your mind is scary enough without people telling you that you’re doing something wrong.
So in a few weeks, hopefully, when I’m feeling a little more secure about the whole writing process I will turn commenting back on.
Or maybe not. Seeing that I’m getting more spam then actual comment.

The difficult part of free writing seems to be that you have to go on with writing long after you passed the point where you can’t think of anything else to say.
But I find that I’m doing everything I can think of to prevent myself from ever reaching that point.
Or when I reach that point I quickly find something else to do. Isn’t internet a sweet thing. As much distraction as you wish.