Friday, February 15, 2013

Dave Rat Blog - Art, Adventure and .....

Art, Adventure and ......

I have been pondering the art of complaining. I see it in others and am dismayed when I find myself immersed in it. Complaints are often descriptions of circumstances or situations that we are trying to convince other people that somehow have happened beyond our control. While indeed many things are beyond our control, the attitudes that we embrace to face challenges, remain fully within our power.

When something goes wrong or fails to meet out expectations, somewhere inside our minds we make a choice of whether to use anger, frustration or in general 'go negative' or perhaps we find a way to laugh and joke about it and grab a hold of a way to minimize the negative impact and probability of recurrence.

Happiness is a decision, happiness is a skill. 

For some it comes naturally, for some it takes practice and others remains illusive. Regardless, happiness is not a stationary state but rather, a trajectory, a direction headed. This motion can come from inside us or an outside influence. If I find myself waking each day trudging through the realities of my life and if suddenly a phone call with a new opportunity comes, happiness follows if I am open or able to accept it. Otherwise if I am closed to the option, the opportunity may have the opposite effect and I feel even more trapped or down trodden. The passive 'wait for someone else or something else to bring happiness to me' mindset is a perfect scenario to become a chronic complainer. 

Hmmmm, what are complaints and are they actually bad? My take is that complaints are pretty much exactly as they are meant to be; a process of annoying others such that others may feel inspired to do whatever it takes to stop you complaining or join to in whinging with you. Fair enough and at times perhaps a useful process, but for the complaining process to work, the complaints need to be well directed, used in moderation and have some sort of resolvability, else they serve no purpose other than making the complainer a less desirable human.
Who would you rather hang out with? The constant complainer over every little unsolvable thing or the person that smiles and overcomes even the most traumatizing of challenges? Which would you rather have other people perceive you to be? 

People that non productively complain are just the people that have not taken control and accepted responsibility over their own happiness trajectory.

Alternately, we can make an internal decision to accomplish a task or set a goal and as we progress in the desired direction, happiness builds. With each goal and step, however slow or small, we can gain more and more control over our direction and happiness and become less of a powerless ship adrift at sea awaiting currents and wind to bring us to land.

And on to more curious things!

Yay! I bought a Makerbot Replicator 2! Ooooh, the idea of having mind pictures become real in plastic.  All I need to do now is commit to learn some 3D software. I typically use Corel Draw now for designs and such and am pretty well versed in it. I do not need perfection, just the shortest time frame between concept and rough prototype would be ideal. Suggestions? Do I really want to commit to AutoCad? CorelCad? SolidWorks? Blender?

Back in time rewind, first a bit too far, here is an old page from the legacy Rat Sound Web Site with a bunch of cool old punk rock flyers and such

And then forward to Peppers tour in Cape Town

I must say I really like it here, cool people, everything is interesting and truly look forward to returning.

Plus, people often talk about being well grounded, well I can honestly say that South American power is well well grounded. Holly crap, that is like a 50 amp ground pin on a standard wall outlet. What kind of catastrophe are they preparing for?

I did a sound seminar on show day and another super group of sound humans! Great questions and I know I keep saying it but it amazes me how universal

Awww, so cute, just a tiny little 60,000 capacity stadium, feels so small.

The show was fun in Cape Town too. Last night of tour and the roadies gather at the watering hole

 we really do have a great group and after nearly two years together the camaraderie is strong

Just for fun, I remember this growing up, my mom is the blond gal in this commercial. Crazy to see it after all these years!

I guess I should really cover some sort of sound subject.  Hmmmm, well my current ponderings are focused on expanding and refining a few of the fundamental concepts I have been exploring in the sound seminars.

1) Nowhere in nature do multiple unrelated sounds radiate from a single source, yet with audio reinforcement/reproduction we do it all the time.

2) Nowhere in nature does the exact same sound radiate from multiple sources, yet we do it all the time with audio reinforcement/reproduction.

3) When the same sound radiates from multiple sources we must address polarity, time, distance and phase issues.

I believe that these concepts hold the critical clues to solving issues and gaining control of comb filtering, sub woofer arrays, steering, sound coverage, sonic realism, power alley and the list goes on and on.


  1. Hey Dave,

    Regarding the 3d Modelling Software you asked, unfortunately you need to use one to later then feed the 3d printing software with data for the makerbot to build the item. There are really good and easy free ones around that you can use, where my favourites are Google Sketchup and Draftsight.

    Have fun and good gigs.

    p.s. if you need a hand that I can help with grab me on Facebook of Google+

  2. Very cool. I have been using Blender so far and a bit of sketchup. Not thrilled with either. I have a suggestion for autodesk 123D which I will look into next as well as check out Draftsight. Thank you!

  3. I have found vectorworks to be the most intuitive 3d modelling software, though I'm sure it will work with a 3d printer satisfactorily. Good luck with your creations, I hope it speeds up the prototyping speed of projects even if it doesn't create a finished resalable project. Be sure to post pics!

  4. Dave - I love your take on complainers. I have an awesome friend who lives in a world that is unpredictable and chaotic, and she has every reason to complain. I call her "Anti-fragile", from an idea I stole from CalTech. It means prospering from randomness, uncertainty, and disorder, and benefitting from a variety of shocks. No fear of failure, no fear of catastrophic life events, because she actually recognizes and acts on opportunities that become apparent only in dire circumstances, when most people would be... complaining. She comes across as cold and uncaring sometimes, but she is definitely in charge of her universe. And she NEVER complains.


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