29.11.18

the road to America


applying for passports turned out to be quite difficult the first time i ever did it, way back in the day, and it also took a ridiculous amount of time. i remember taking really ugly pictures for it in a photo booth which was jammed into the side of a corridor in the mall. luckily, you can now do it online, so the only problem was the pictures. i did all my makeup and headed out to get some from a similar little booth in the enormous Bullring Mall. it didn't go well since i had neglected to plan for my absolute loathing of reflections and/or pictures of myself. if you have zero self esteem, it's hard to keep taking picture after picture of yourself all unexpressive and unemotional and not just give up and exit the booth shamefaced at your own ugliness.

after the second booth had taken its max allowance of three pictures and they had all been marked as "not passport compliant", i was beginning to get a little bit irritated. i had to pay for both sets of failed pictures, of course, and the whole reason i was out here was that i'd already tried to get regular pictures taken with my phone to work with no success. i took my two sets of crappy pictures and went home trying not to cry like a little bitch.

of course when i got home, more phone pictures wouldn't work either. eventually someone suggested to just try putting one of the failed photobooth ones in. it worked. i sort of sat there surprised for a while, like a dog after you bop it on the nose for being bad. but it worked! my application was away! there was no need to cry over crap photos!

in a couple of weeks my brand new passport made its way to me. the picture does of course make me look less "bright youthful tech person" and more "Baba Yaga bought a new liquid lip colour" but it's so good to have an in-date passport again. now i can actually accept invitations to travel, maybe go see friends and fellow biohackers who live on the Continent or in the States, anything. it's something i wanted for a long time & thanks to kind, generous friends i can go anywhere now, within budget.

after the passport the next step to BDYHAX was the ESTA application, thankfully another thing you can do online. i'm not gonna lie, i was bricking it filling the form in. images of American bureaucrats with guns stopping me at the border filled my head, in case i'd inadvertently lied about my details or they considered me a disgusting drug addict who shouldn't be in their country or something. but i paid for the application and three or four days later it came back as approved, to my relief. now i need a travelling prescription for some of my meds, which is in the works, and a letter from the doc to show why i need them (i have an appointment to see them in early December.) it's all in progress which is both exciting and terrifying to me.

i'm really looking forward to BDYHAX, and Grindfest too which i still need to arrange. it's so good to be doing something after being ill for a long time, & i'm so excited for all the people i'm going to meet at the event itself. even just the plane ride makes me excited. more as it happens

L

3 comments:

Dan Campbell said...

“if you have zero self esteem, it's hard to keep taking picture after picture of yourself all unexpressive and unemotional and not just give up and exit the booth shamefaced at your own ugliness.”

Hahaha. You would be surprised how many people on the planet, have similar issues.

But so what? There’s no rule that says that one of the pioneers of an area of Transhuman research has to be good-looking.



“i took my two sets of crappy pictures and went home trying not to cry like a little bitch.”

Why not? That would have looked great on Youtube. Barrel of laughs.


“... but it worked! my application was away! there was no need to cry over crap photos!”

Yes! Success!



“…now i can actually accept invitations to travel, maybe go see friends and fellow biohackers who live on the Continent or in the States,”

This is unbelievable, Lepth. I never envisioned you coming to the states.

I’ll give you my phone number before you leave, but have no interest in meeting you or other celebrities, or even former friends. Age has gotten the better of me, and I’m probably shyer than you, on this issue. Thank heaven for phone communications & emails.


“anything. it's something i wanted for a long time & thanks to kind, generous friends i can go anywhere now, within budget.”

Congratulations, angel. You truly have earned this.



“i was bricking it filling the form in. images of American bureaucrats with guns stopping me at the border filled my head,”, etc.

That kind of paranoia isn’t uncommon. I wouldn’t be surprised if a certain amount of unnecessary fear is encouraged by those who make the rules. But who knows, it’s all speculation.


… and three or four days later it came back as approved…now i need a travelling prescription for some of my meds, which is in the works, and a letter from the doc to show why i need them…it's all in progress which is both exciting and terrifying to me.”

It’s not terrifying to the rest of us, but exciting for sure. This is a totally new adventure & world for you. Heck, even if everything goes well, you may well decide that you don’t like it in the States anyway, and you won’t come back. But at least you tried, and decided for yourself.

I complain about the United States and the incessant political cat-fighting, all the time. But I don’t want to live anywhere else. Or travel, without a Teleporter.


“i'm really looking forward to BDYHAX, and Grindfest too which i still need to arrange. it's so good to be doing something after being ill for a long time, & i'm so excited for all the people i'm going to meet at the event itself. even just the plane ride makes me excited. more as it happens”

Thanks so much for the update, Lepth. Aside from the excitement of your upcoming projects, it’s also a relief to hear that you’re doing well, and we can worry less about you (but not completely stop worrying).

And remember – pictures and videos. Clean the cell phone, before you leave.



Talk to you soon,


L & R to yourself and Paul,


DC

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