31 January 2007

A Voice in the Dark

Today I had the nasty re-realisation that there are more than 70 million blogs in the world and that the chance of my blog hitting the celebrity list is as equal and therefore as minimal as that of any other blog.

In other words, we are all insignificant specs on the bum of the net.
Let that sink in for a moment. Anonymity really hurts.

Did you, for a moment, really think I was trying to setup my own private journal? That perhaps, I may be this solitary soul, who found contentment in reading her posts aloud to herself whenever she was bored or nostalgic? Of course not. As for every other blogger, I am trying to express myself, mark my name in history, bask in the glory of other bloggers and shamelessly indulge myself in self-enhancement strategies in order to prep up my self-esteem to a new healthy level.

And so this stinging truth about the spewing mass of posts that exists on the planet made me feel rather depressed. Not that I'm crying for attention or anything (well, ok, maybe just a little) but most of all, it made me realise how much shit actually reaches cyberspace.

My vague and presumptuous estimate is that out of the 70 million or so blogs, at least half of those are full of nonsensical ramblings (unlike this post, for example) and the other half is serious biographical or informative material. Further, only a small percentage of actually meaningful, informative posts would originate purely from the blogger's imagination rather than from plagiarised web articles and/or referenced information. Originality it seems, is not the blogger's forte. (Aside: this rampant plagiarism doesn't just extend to the world of blogs, I'm starting to suspect that some soft-news journalists are looking into posts for new material.)

Which brings me to the core of my tantrum...ahum...argument. Why does my blog have to compete with the million blogs that contain cut-and-pasted articles? Man, do you really want to waste cyberspace by re-posting Wikipedia or being the web-echo for Times magazine? Are you so afraid to post your own opinion? It's such a delight to read opinions no matter how extreme, to learn about a blogger's dirty little secrets, to dwell into their fears, their hopes and their faults. It's called being real. I'd like to think that the sheer number of real bloggers, with real posts has managed to eclipse my own into anonymity. But the notion that in fact, my blog is being eclipsed by a gaggle of never ending links and references is so undignified.

So yes, as a matter of fact, I am depressed. And you know what, I don't care anymore. I've had it. I'm going to start pasting quotes from Tolstoy and Shakespeare, then I'll make regular posts of copied recipes from Recipes.com and then I'll make you all suffer.

30 January 2007

Blame it on Leo

What Your Soul Really Looks Like

You are quite expressive and thoughtful. You see the world in a way that others are blind to.

You are a grounded person, but you also leave room for imagination and dreams. You feet may be on the ground, but you're head is in the clouds.

You believe that people see you as larger than life and important. While this is true, they also think you're a bit full of yourself.

Your near future is in a very different place (both physically and mentally) from where you are right now.

For you, love is all about caring and comfort. You couldn't fall in love with someone you didn't trust.

Full of myself??? Me??

I can't help it if Leo rampaged through my horoscope.


25 January 2007

80s Nostalgia


I hear a lot of stories
I suppose they could be true
All about love
And what it can do to you
High is the risk of striking out
The risk of getting hurt
And still, I have so much to learn

I know, 'cause I think about it all the time
I know that real love is quite a vice

And a good heart these days is hard to find (a good heart)
True love, the lasting kind
A good heart these days is hard to find
So please be gentle with this heart of mine

My expectations may be high
I blame it on my youth
Soon enough I learned the painful truth
I'll face it like a fighter
Then boast of how I've grown
Anything is better than being alone

Well I know, 'cause I learn a little every day
I know, 'cause I listen when the experts say

That a good heart these days is hard to find (a good heart)
True love, the lasting kind
A good heart these days is hard to find (ooh)
So please be gentle with this heart of mine, yeah


As I reflect on all my childhood dreams
My ideas of love weren't as foolish as they seemed
If I don't start looking now, I'll be left behind
And a good heart these days, it's hard to find

I know, it's a dream I'm willing to defend
I know it will all be worth it in the end

And a good heart these days is hard to find (a good heart)
True love, the lasting kind
A good heart these days is hard to find
So please be gentle with this heart of mine

And a good heart these days is hard to find (a good heart)
True love, the lasting kind
(Ooh) a good heart these days is hard to find
So please be gentle with this heart
With this heart of mine

21 January 2007

Color Me

Bet you didn't know this...


You are a very calm and contemplative person. Others are drawn to your peaceful, nurturing nature.

Find out your color at QuizMeme.com!

18 January 2007

An Ordinary Day

It was Thursday.
My writing day.

It began at 7:30 with the promise of delivery. After several days of intense role play and mental rumination on each of the characters, I could feel the bulk of several pages ripening at the tip of my left and right frontal lobes. Ready for the plucking. I had to lay its juicy core down on disk before its essence eluded me.

So I sat down in front of my computer to write.

At first I played around with the timeline of the story which spans several years, re-arranging the dates etc... Then did some research to ascertain certain events around those dates.
Looked at my word count. No changes.
You know when you have a lump in your throat and want to spit out something and can't? That's what I felt like.
It was there, begging to be plucked but the brain to keyboard conductor just didn't work properly.

The phone rang, breaking the silence with its obnoxious tone.
(Anxious mental reckoning while the phone is ringing)
Who could be calling me????
I don't have friends who ring??
No one rings me at this hour!
It's just not a done thing...
I ignored it.
Anyway, I knew it was a telemarketer. You see I NEVER answer the phone. Well except when I have a premonition that someone who I actually know is ringing me.
But usually I can sense the salesperson's breath on the other end of the network.
So I ignored the phone. (This was to happen again later in the afternoon by the way. Who the hell do they think they are???)

Around 10:30 I grew hungry. I went to the fridge.
Kit Kat and Diet Coke break. Hmmm... I'm hooked on Kit Kat.

Then, it happened.
I don't know if it was the pleasure of eating the Kit Kat or the caffeine boost but I was swept away. I ended up writing without a break for 11 pages straight until 12:45pm. Not bad.

So then I went out to stretch my legs.
Around 3pm, came back home and felt like surfing the net.
I read about the slave trade, what else. (What could be a more obvious topic for spending one's afternoon?)
And, loyal to my uncanny ability to jump from one subject to another, I then went on to read about Kashgar which the Hans have now baptised Kashi.
I surfed and surfed and viewed some truly neat photos of Kashgar Sunday Market where the Uyghurs and Khazaks parade in multicolored costumes selling their wares. Strange, those Uyghurs (pronounced We-Gar) actually look like me!
I mean, yeah, when you consider it, same type of ethnic mixture...
I could pass for a Uyghur! Fancy that.
That amazing ethnic exploration took most of the remainder of my afternoon.

4:30 already???

I got up and decided to cook Tuna Mornay.
Quick look in the kitchen to ascertain the situation.
Tuna? Check.
Corn? Check.
Onion? One purple onion but that will do. Check.
Cheese? Check.
Pasta. Check. Ok.
Started to indulge in the joys of cooking.
No Milk...

Went out to the night owl to buy milk.
Returned home.

The phone rang. This time it was Jason, so I naturally picked up the phone. Geez,look at me! I'm a psychic pro!

Had a major corporate gossip while cooking.

Ate dinner.

I skipped along to the bathroom where I remained for 1 whole hour while listening to Enigma's A Posteriori. Fell in a delicious trance during the salacious "Dancing With Mephisto", which happens to be track number 4.
And to top it off, I had a quick fantasy about being world famous while under the shower. Woohoo!!!

And then it was time for buying groceries.
A most uneventful day I'm afraid...

But I did manage to write so Vive moi!

14 January 2007

El Laberinto del Fauno - A Self-Styled Review

Last night, after much yearning, I saw Pan's Labyrinth and was most pleasurably transported to a dark, magical world. I couldn't resist boosting this film in Imdb (not that it needs it, mind you).

Please understand, I've written my thoughts not as a 'review', (I don't like that word, it's too final and arrogant in its omnipotence) but as a stream of exegetic ideas which I think are an agreeable starting point for film discussions.
Perhaps at times, I accidentally slip into identification with some of the film characters and you may need to excuse any lack of objectivity that my writing betrays. I hope that through my awareness of that fact, I redeem myself and that you are not prevented from enjoying these most genuine perceptions.

My Pan's Labyrinth comments

9 January 2007

Wrestling with Satan

The devil came to me last month and said with complicity:
"Just think, if you work more hours for me, you will make more money and you will be able to buy more things."

- 'More things' I mused, with affected relish.
But the idea of being a slave to my once very materialistic nature did not please me. It was a step backwards. Besides it would imply that there was something terribly wrong with working part time such that one ought to remedy the situation. Whatsmore I could not think of anything that was worth the extra hours of toil, nothing that I absolutely had to buy and for which I would be ready to sacrifice the extra time better spent on writing my precious book.
So I refused.
The book must be written.

Undeterred, the devil came to me last week and said:
"Ok, I will make you a leader. What do you say?"

I did hesitate. As a leader I would be potentially bound to serve more hours...if only to properly assume the additional responsibilities and be a correct team player. The idea displeased me. But it was either this or the potential of having someone else fill that role...
Oh, the shame, to kneel before another in servitude. Perhaps a stranger, someone younger than me or someone less experienced than me. I even went as far as imagining the worst contender for this role, placing my self in the hands of a maniacal bully who would humiliate and taunt me so that I would forever regret turning down that role. This hideous thought unravelled before my eyes, in all its burlesque splendour and aroused nothing but repulsion in someone as proud and independent as me.
But I desisted.
I administered a majestic slap in the face of my ego. Shame on you! Oh, vanity when your grip takes hold of me, I will be but a slave. I want none of it. So be it, if I have to be the humble worker at the bottom of the org chart, worse, the part time worker! I will not be a slave to my own ego as I have been in the past.
So once again, I resisted the devil.

But He is cunning, and He will find another way to tempt me, be sure of that.
The third time will be the worst perhaps.

5 January 2007

In Retrospect

Major events in your life that are bound to get you noticed:

1. Your Birth - you're the star!!! Well for a couple of years anyway...
2. Your Engagement - everyone wants to see that ring and find out how you proposed
3. Your Wedding
4. Your Pregnancy Announcement
5. Newly Born Announcement (see 1)
6. Death - you're the star again!! Nothing ever inspires more admiration and love than a rotting corpse. And everything you've ever done in the parentheses between 1 and 6, every word you've ever said, suddenly takes on a more profound meaning.

Major events in your life that no one seems to notice:

- You're in LOVE and flying on top of the moon every time you think about that other

- You're at a major crossroad, no, not 1 - 6. A crossroad with no name. You are about to take a turn that will make you feel that life is REAL. A turn, for better or worse.

- You have been spiritually enlightened and feel immense inner peace.

- You are and have been thinking about killing yourself.

- You are in the process of creating. You are creating something. Anything into which all your energies are passionately immersed. Your passion draws you inevitably closer and closer to that thing, that sacred monster, born of imagination, that you gave life to.

- You are old and terribly lonely.

- You DO, in fact, notice.

3 January 2007

Top 10 Peeves of the Moment

1. Being told by other females that I'm overdressed. Oh, I'm sorry, did i just make you feel insecure?

2. Bouncers who grope. (Although that can be interesting.)

3. Being asked for my id at clubs and pubs when I'm 31 years old.

4. Mothers who hit their kids. Fathers who hit their kids. Parents who hit each other (Dags!)

5. Children who are spoilt, clueless and scream unintelligent things (unlike my beautiful soulful cousins). I recently visited China and the kids there are mostly well behaved. They walk all over the place (that's right, there are practically NO prams) and have loads of energy. You don't hear them whinge and moan. An overload of TV, toys and absent parents bring out the worst in children.

6. Cynics and destructionists. People who assert themselves in the only way they can: by bringing others down.

7. Liking a film SIMPLY because the critics hate it. Just an example of the sheep mentality trying to adopt some semblance of individualism. Alternative, my foot.

8. Hating a film SIMPLY because the critics rave about it. (See 7)

9. Critics who don't read or watch what they write about. (Guys, you could really hurt someone's self esteem here. At least do it properly and not by accident.)

10. Critics who DO read and watch what they write about but totally miss the point. Example. I've seen some reviews of Babel and I have to ask myself what on earth the writer was on when they thought the film's major theme was "Safety".
Not miscommunication or prejudice or cultural barriers.
Just Safety.
Oh, so THAT's what the director was thinking when he named his film after the Tower of Babel. Of course.

2 January 2007

Les Nuits etc...

Oh, and just in case you were wondering, "Les Nuits Masquees" literally means "The Masked Nights".

Of course, I could have written, "The Masked Nights" but it sounds so much prettier in French.

Hopefully, it should conjure up all sorts of sinful, clandestine visions...
Stone colonnades under the glow of a shameless moon, heaving breasts in tight stringy corsets, voluptuous skin that panders to daring decolletages, red lipped beauties whispering unlady things from behind their black velvet dominos, forbidden games, sinister violin tunes in the background...mystery...secrets...that sort of thing.

Theoretically anyway.

Hopefully my blog name will serve its purpose and you'll end up thinking that I'm a little sultry, a little dark. Maybe a little bit mysterious (a touch of mystery is always good).
This blog name will lend every single one of my posts, no matter how benign, with some imagined double meaning that you'll not doubt ponder over for many hours while you try to figure out what I look like behind my mask.

I have a penchant for drama. I'll try not to disappoint.