Emotional Biography: Benjamin-Newton.com and Cloudy.diamonds

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There are almost always more than 2 sides to a story.

I grew up in the 90s where I first found out about the environmental crisis. We thought people would from then start cutting back and we would prevent a lot of the worst effects of global warming. We had won a very quick and easy war with Iraq, so that they would not control too much oil. There was later no meaningful progress on the environment but many more wars about oil.

At the same time the Soviet empire was collapsing and so we didn't have to fight Russians in the Middle East. Luckily we avoided having to fight any of Saddam Hussein's special forces because we basically did the same strategy we did during World War 2 D-day - we faked right and went left. We were very lucky in convincing Saddam Hussein that if he used chemical weapons (poisonous gas), we would nuke his country. Luckily also our top of the line military equipment likes tanks and stealth aircraft, which were designed for fighting Russians in Eastern Europe, worked well in the deserts of the Middle East. Luckily also we were able to hold off Iraq or 6 months for us to deploy (move) enough soldiers, marines, and airmen into the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

The US public then learned about Middle East geography and the new weapons developed for the previous cold war for the first time. We watched some of the war live at home on the first cable new network, CNN. We bombed them for months and then took the country in a matter of a couple days. Technologically we were very much like the Germans during Word War II, if they invaded America. This was a war fought with weapons and strategy that would impress NAZI Germany.

Little did I know at the time that I would be in Army Basic Training 5 years from when this war started. I did not do as well in school as I was capable of and so joined the Army for college money and because I cared for the people and environment of America.

During High School, I had gone back to Washington DC as a first prize state-wide winner of a national peace essay contest. Even at this time I did not see democracy as workable in the Middle East or even possible - why would anyone in power willingly share it with others? I became an Eagle Scout. I started my own Ross Perot United We Stand America inspired political club at my high school. I ran 3 years cross country and track (always dead last place) and was a Varsity Cheer Leader for one year. I served as a staff member at 2 different summer camps, 2 different years at different ends of my state. I enlisted in the Army in the summer between my junior and senior year and I spent my senior year getting in shape for the Army.

I was an early (in my life) proponent of existentialism. I argued with the teachers that when we were supposed to mark things true that were facts and false that were opinions, that a fact could not be a truth, but an opinion could be. When I left the military early and ended up stopping out (stop taking classes) at my university, while previously studying Chinese Literature, I really thought that Taoism explained how I was different and made sense to me as I was a failure at ending both the military and college before I was finished.

I looked into getting into programming at this time and learned about Linux for the first time. I started my own website to share my poetry with my uncle. I also though for several years around this time that I also might be a goth to help explain how I was different. I was originally discharged from the military due to a personality disorder but I was told it was really because of my sensitivity to chemicals. I later went back to school as my parents helped me as I ran out of money living on my own.

I had to make up some credits so I ended up taking courses on Existentialism, Eco-feminism, and Art and Gender. I really enjoyed and did well in all these summer classes. I realized I was also an existentialist and that I might have some natural inclination towards philosophy in general. At this time, I changed my major from Business Administration to Journalism as I realized also that I was good at writing and both hated and did not do well in Business. I had originally chosen Business Management as a major as I enjoyed a marketing class in high school plus it was considered one of the few majors that was practical at the time. I ended up taking under division accounting 5 times, but did quite well in under division economics. My deteriorating ability to do basic math came about this time and totally sunk my ability to pass courses.

I took a class on Beauvoir which we studied as a philosopher. She was the lover of Sartre and applied his philosophy to feminism. She was famous for writing the Second Sex. I spent most my time that quarter trying to read through all her writings. I ended up very happily ripping one up and putting several of her books into the fireplace after the course ended. I also took a class on grammar at the time which I did pass but never took the test at the end we needed to do journalism as it stressed me out so much. It was at the end of this term around the Winter vacation that I had my paranoid episode, was voluntarily committed to a psychiatric ward of a private hospital, and diagnosed with Paranoid Schizophrenia.

My parents helped me get set up and started as I would likely have been on the streets without their help. I thought I just had an emotional breakdown and did not know until about a month later that I had Schizophrenia. The veterans eventually accepted my application and awarded me with a 100% service connected disability. I ended up getting into a group home until I got the pension and ended up living in my own apartment at various locations around town, with a 2 year stay in a retirement home. Over the last 21 years, I have written about 3,000 pages about my experiences and what I have read about. I never got published as I was never willing to sell my copyright and actually give most of it away for free under a what is called a Creative Commons License with the stipulation that it is not altered. I have read about technology almost every day since then.

I had a big time period of depression and paranoia around the economic crisis of 2008. Around that time, I collected supplies for survival, learned about disaster survival, and emotionally accepted that society can and will come apart at any time. Several years later, I was under the impression that I could not be happy and be Christian, until I read a book called Eat, Pray, Love which helped me accept where I am now and accept that I am not responsible for other people’s lives and problems. I also gave up watching News around this time and recently now do not watch any TV. Science Fiction shows are the only one that interest me and there are just too many triggers for paranoia in them. The news caused me a great deal of depression.

I have recently fully accepted that it is likely I will never find romantic love in my lifetime. I do not have any animals as I cannot take care of them, but I do have many stuffed toys that talk to me. I never got on social media and stopped writing comments on tech articles about 10 years ago. I tried many times to learn about others areas of study, get involved in churches, and various community groups, but they always stress me out too much. I am close with my family, sister’s in laws, and I now have a niece.

This may seem like a letdown if this happened to you, but I should be and am happy. I live in the richest and easiest to live in country in the world, I live in the best part of it and probably the best city in that state. It rains a lot here, but this brings back good memories for me. This is one of the reasons I never traveled.

I have the most secure forms of income you can have and have never had debt (or only for a very short time). The VA medical system is rapidly improving in my area, the vegetation is trimmed much better near the sidewalks and bus stops than it was in the past, and the homeless situation has vastly improved. I am exercising better and have more money on hand.

I have reduced the amount I spend on the Internet access, website services, and how much I spend on food by about 1/2 each. I have also gotten rid of a lot of the toys I collected that I never even saw and got a 2012 Mac Pro in the trade which cost my $25 total for a cable to get it working. Between the increased processing power and software optimizations, I can get a 3d model ready for the web in seconds instead of hours.

I recently figured out how to make artwork out of just text, photos, and logos all in vector format while still keeping a shiny and glossy look and saved huge amounts of space. I have used several new programs for my web design that make it easier and faster to create artwork and writing. I have also gotten my website code organized and thought out well enough that I am making it available for others for free. Between 10 and 20 years ago, I often had to undo a design and roll it back to an earlier version, which I have not had to do for at least 5 years.

Cloudy.diamonds by Ben Huot

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