What’s with the iRonin thing? You think you’re a Samurai or something?

Ha, no. I just love allegory. For example, I used to own the domain 37thchamber.com back when I was like 19.  If you don’t know what the 36 chambers are, start [ here ]. The 36th chamber was “added” by the main character, but rather than it teach a specific discipline or technique, he created it in the name of teaching Kung Fu to the people – so… I decided the 37th chamber would be extending Shaolin Kung Fu to the internet as the next step in the evolution.   It was a cool idea, except for the fact that other than having a cool name, I really didn’t have any Shaolin Kung Fu skills, or research materials, or anything really to actually advance the whole Kung Fu thing – so it was just my cool domain name until I finally released it some 5-6 years later.  Now, oddly enough, someone else actually owns it – why I have no idea, but it has something to do with [ Palo Alto ]. (???)

So, what’s the Ronin allegory then?

The [ Rōnin ], historically, where Samurai who lost their masters.  This was a huge deal, and in Bushido code, samurai who lost their masters were supposed to commit seppuku (ritual suicide) – those who did not and decided to strike out on their own were meant to suffer shame.   I don’t like the whole suffer shame part, but I draw a lot of inspiration from the overall concept of losing one’s master.  I mean, surely not all the house masters were pure and altruistic – some were certainly corrupt or selfish – ultimately caring very little for their followers who vowed to lay their lives down.

But I digress – to me “master” isn’t any specific person – instead it represents the guiding or informing source – the authority whose charge it would normally be to explain and direct.  Realizing early on that my “masters” weren’t exactly altruistic themselves – I made the same difficult decision I’m sure many Rōnin had to when they found out their masters were, well, douche bags.  Finally, add a little internet flair, and you get iRonin.  You may also see RoninATX (ATX = Austin, Texas) – this is usually what I have to flip over to because iRonin is often (surprisingly) taken.

How’s that working out for you, wave man?

As much as I enjoy the open-minded freedom of not subscribing to any one particular institution or dogma, the result is often…  disheartening.  I’ve gotten pretty good at picking out the stuff to avoid – but it seems like the things I believe in were discussed and shared amongst men of history who lived and died decades and centuries before me – and what’s left of their legacies now are diluted, absent, or at the bottom of the “who cares about that new age crap” pile of rhetoric.   It’s also painful to watch us, as a species, continuing down the blinded path laid out by our current institutions and dogmas and realizing that there are enough people in the world who are self-proclaimed guardians of the status quo that I’m left feeling like this…

Still, I find shimmers of hope here and there – and even though I’m left mostly with the words of dead men, it doesn’t make them any less relevant – so overall I’m not bitter (a la [ Cypher ] complex), and I quite value the experiences I’ve had along the way.

So what’s the site for then?

I have my blog – I have my 80 other social profiles – This is basically a portal site to bring all of those aspects together into one space I can call my own.  I also intend to use the site to track personal growth, for instance regarding my health. There’s something about putting stuff on the web that makes you feel more… accountable… for them rather than excusing lack of progress away silently in our daily lives. So in a weird sense this site exists to keep me focused and honest, because I’m too good at talking myself out of things and my loved ones are too kind to call me out on them <3.

Speaking of loved ones, why so little mention?

You’ll definitely notice a lack of topics discussing my friends and family directly. This is by design, and primarily in respect for their privacy. My associations to the people in my life are already well connected via Facebook and other portals, so there’s no need to pull them in here. You may see comments from them or brief mentions, but for the most part they won’t be included unless they wish to be or in passing. Suffice to say: I have some of the best friends, family, and the best partner in the universe at my side – and they deserve recognition in person rather than on some website. 🙂

Why did this About page turn into a weird dialog with, essentially, yourself?

Good question. I have no idea. The concept of “About” always leads me to think more FAQ than Mission Statement – so I tend to want to answer what I imagine would be some honest questions about the site if they don’t already know me or what it’s about.  Aaaand since I’ve never really had an interview with Barbara Walters or some shit to derive from, I guess going a little dissociative seemed like a good way to do it.

Cool, makes sense. So… need anything else from me then?

Nah, I’m good unless you have any other questions?

Nah not really at this time. Maybe in the future this page can be expanded by others who have more burning “About” questions.

Yeah, absolutely.

Until then…

[                   Rōnin                        ]