My other stuff
Flickr
Twitterfication
Search
Archives
Thursday
Sep092010

In spite of inspiration.

I find it mind boggling that there are these deep and perculiar people out there. Walking around in the world. These amazing individuals who have lead these lives of immense complexity. Perhaps they have had dramatic ups or downs. Contrasts that have made permanent marks in the very essence of their being. Alternately they may have existences pointing in one definite direction and have never veered from that trajectory. Not even slightly. All of them are fascinating paths to travel. No matter what the eventual outcome might be.

Maybe they are the extraordinary offspring from likewise extraordinary parents. Progenitors that have nurtured just the right attributes and interests and morals in their child, in order to create a truely beautiful individual. One that is kind and with a sharp intellect which can cut through any adversity. Conquering it. Restructuring it into a wonderful opportunity. Exceptional folk that can find even the most miniscule grain of hope in a salty sea of shit.

Or their parents completely fucked them up beyond repair. Through shitty parenting and guidance. Or lack thereof. Or abuse. Forming, fermenting and unleashing a completely selfish asshole onto the world. A reprobate who is a detriment to all those unfortunate enough to be around them. That unlucky child might turn into a violent criminal with serious psychological scars and issues. Whatever the case may be they are all interesting people. With interesting stories to tell.

My life is nowhere near as intriguing. I have had a few negative influences and some positive experiences. Some of them seemed massive to me. The scope of which I couldn't fathom. I imagined. However, if I take a step back and get some distance and put it all into perspective my life has been a pretty clear and straight line going forwards in time. Towards no particular goal or horizon. 

I have never been a person who has lived life at it's utmost extremes. No matter what part of the positive/negative-spectrum that might be. I am not one of those people. Not an inspiration to all others, who volunteers their time at a soup kitchen during Christmas Eve. Nor a menace to society, that punches a pensioners in the face and steals their coin purse in order to buy some cheap smack. Never mistaken for one of those people who has traveled to all corners of the world.  To obscure and exotic countries, eating little known national dishes while riding upside down in a hang glider in the middle of a thunderstorm. I won't ever be that deranged loon of a person who rides the most frightening roller coaster stark naked while lobbing fragmentation grenades into the awestruck crowd of innocent onlookers down below. I'll never fuck a walrus. While even though the most morally ambivalent of the examples, it is just not in the cards for me.

I've read some books, watched some movies, met some people, loved some people, hated some people, traveled a little, eaten poutine in Canada, smoked a few cigarettes (with varying contents) and here I am. And that's OK. Interestingly uninteresting is my angle and I'm sticking to it. 

What's your story?

Tuesday
Aug172010

Worstness.

This is one of the worst things that has ever happened on American television. Now, I say that partly to shock you. Although only partly. Hear me out.

Why is this kid allowed on national television to review movies and by extension - discuss the art of cinema? Who is he? Is he some sort of wunderkind that possesses an amazingly diverse knowledge of film? Or is he just some child that has been allowed to morph into this hideous caricature of what a movie critic ought to be? 

Let me be absolutely clear - I don't harbour any ill will toward this pre-teen boy. At least not any more than the average level of hatred I feel for all young people. I completely blame his appearance on my computer screen (and American television sets) on his parents and the producers of this particular show. Someone should call child protective services.

So why is he here? Is he here to discuss the craft of movie making? The art of telling stories and evoking emotions through a visual medium? Has he perhaps thought of some fresh, new, borderline revolutionary approach to interpreting the foggy old motion pictures? Of course not. His sole purpose on the show is as a curiosity. Some sort of freakish man-boy who acts and talks like someone thrice his age. A middle aged, no talent, complete and utter douche bag. Is this what we are reduced to? Watching someone who has yet to reach puberty spout his unfounded opinions on movies, and critiquing what amounts to the culmination of other people's professional careers? Seriously?

I am not even implying that this kid doesn't have the right to his opinions, tastes and musings. If indeed they are his own. What I am saying however is that they have no place on a major media outlet. They should be restricted to his YouTube account or blog or Twitter. Or what ever the hell it is that young folk use these days.

Sure, most people probably do not mind at all. They aren't in the least bit troubled that he has taken the place of someone who might actually have a God damn idea of what they're saying. I however do mind. I do not think that intelligent discussion on art should take a back seat to some ratings grabbing oddity with red hair. Who clearly has only really learned the tropes of a public speaker and not the actual mental prowess of a debater or critic. But maybe that's good enough for most people. As long as he appears to know what he's talking about - it'll do. After all, that's almost the same thing as actual arguments, right?

I'm going to wildly speculate here and propose that this is a symptom of a modern misguided belief that "Everyone's opinions matter equally as much.". This idea that no matter who you are or what the subject matter - your opinion has an equal value to that of everyone else's. Well, it bloody well does not. A neurologists opinion on what to do in case of a stroke should (and thankfully does) matter a whole hell of a lot more than what I might be able pull out of my ass from having watched all episodes of House M.D.

In ordinary society this becomes a problem of course, as we have a problem of gauging someone's intelligence, level of knowledge and aptitude towards the issue at hand. This forces us to hear everyone out in order to know which people we can ignore. We simply cannot immediately determine how reliable they are as a source of information from appearances and background alone. Unless they look like an outright homicidal loon and the topic of discussion isn't: "How to get bloodstains out of the carpet in the trunk of my car.". In essence, we have no quantifiable way of measuring these things, to keep track. Like, say: a number. 

Only in this case we do. It's called his age. It's eleven.* And it doesn't add up to being anywhere near enough. Certainly not to allow him onto broadcast television and discussing anything more advanced than what he ate for dinner today. Randomly tripping over some truth is not the same thing as being knowledgeable. What's next? Babies reviewing classical music?

 ‎"Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.'" - Isaac Asimov

*How was he even allowed into a PG-13 movie to begin with?

Friday
Jul092010

Funny Thing.

One method for maintaining physical well-being that perplexes me is Laughter Yoga. Which is a form of yoga that employs laughter as a form of excercise. I suppose. It seems to be based off of the old adage that laughter is the best medicine, and supposedly prolongs ones life. Which may well be true.

I have serious doubts about the veracity of its claims. Firstly. Where this yoga technique falters is in the interpretation. The old saying doesn't actually express the belief that the physical act of laughing is somehow healthy in and off itself. What it is expressing, to my ears at least, is that a certain mirth and light heartedness makes you on the whole - live a better healthier life. And there are facts that back this up. Depressed people tend to take care of themselves less well than those who are not. Couple that with a sharp increase in substance abuse among people with depression and there appears to be some truth to the whole thing. Who hasn't had a drink too many from simply being a bit down in the dumps?

For people who believe in chakras and energy patterns and other unproven things they take some things surprisingly literally. I would have expected a little bit more imagination and anagoge.

If the act of laughing alone is somehow healthy, is then giggling also good for you health? Not in equal measure of course (that would be absurd) but how many percent on the total laugh-o-meter are we hitting with a simple spasmodic burst from the mouth and nose? Not to mention all the different varieties of chuckles and chortles. And what about a disrespectful snigger? Is that also a way towards a good long life? Perish the thought. Some asshole will live to be a thousand.

No. We need to stop this right away. Laughter should be reserved for manifesting joy, amusement or in some cases scorn. No more laughing without actually meaning it. What's next? Sneezing when we're not feeling...sneezy? Shaking hands although we've already met the person and are quite familiar with them? High-fiving at the funerals of loved ones? Complete madness. Almost as mad as standing around in a group and laughing hysterically for no real reason.

  

Monday
Apr122010

Musings on moisture.

The wonderous world of weather phenomenon. It's perplexing, how such things evoke thoughts and feelings in me.

Mist can be romantic and mysterious. As it creeps and lingers around trees and up against moss-covered blocks of granite I sense something otherworldly. Infiltrating and caressing. Implying a spark of life it does not possess. Like a stalker, only less likely to carry a knife.

Fog is sometimes comforting when it envelopes your house on an autumn sunday while you enjoy a cup of tea. Turning your humble abode into a safe island, plunked down in an ocean of upcoming and stressful monday morning musts.

Haze mutes the world, bluring the harsh colours and blunting the sharp edges. Making the world seem distant and soothingly at bay. Perhaps a moderate bout of cataract would be beneficial? Not only for the weed-privileges.

Few things can compare to the pleasures of imagining a simple cloud into a rambunctious little turtle driving a tractor (fueled by nothing but chocolate) on a marvelously sun-drenched spring day. That so much joy can be drawn from water vapor floating aimlessly through the air. From what is in essence just dampness taken flight. So why don't I feel the same way when it infiltrates my socks?

I even find mushroom clouds quite attractive. In their own way.