Monthly Archives: January 2011

Why This Photo Is Fake

Typical caption

Here’s a shot of me relaxing in a beautiful tidal hammock in Sabang Beach, Philippines! The warm water gently laps up at you as you relax in the humid shade between cocktails. Wish you were here!

Why it’s fake

There were no cocktail bars nearby. I spent about 3 or four minutes setting up the self-timer on my borrowed camera because I’m travelling alone, which means nobody but me actually witnessed my Moment of Hammock of Awesomeness. This gave me ten seconds to race barefoot over sharp rocks, climb into the hammock, and assume the position of someone who’s been relaxing there for hours. After the red light blinked, I thought about genuinely enjoying the moment for a minute, but instead I leaped out of the hammock immediately to rescue it lest it fall off its tilted ledge directly into 1ft of water.

But everything worked out fine in the end. I got the photo, and now everyone on Facebook can see. That’s what counts, right?

Think, people. Unravel this shit.

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Welcome to the Philippines

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Go Away And Find Whatever

As an inspiring and all-round amazing guy, one of my life aims is to be able to create artwork with value as effortlessly as speaking or breathing. It’s Sunday afternoon, & I disembark on the train-plane-taxi-bus-boat power-combo (1,000,000 NEW HIGH SCORE!!!) that will land me in Puerto Galera, Philippines in 22 hours. Actually, I just made that figure up, I don’t know how long it will take, but writing publicly about how worldly I am makes you jealous. I may skip the taxi and walk.

Anyway, I’m clearing my disks for recording some new sights and sounds, and it’s only now that I realize how easy it would be just to make the music video for KJourney, a Pravda track that has been hanging around for a while. Now that I don’t have even two hours to do it, it becomes ‘so simple’. Self-delusional? I’ll spend the next two weeks fantasizing about how I’m going to attack it with vigour and enthusiasm when I get back – but this time, I will. For now, time to empty my recycle bin. Cheers, bitches.

No Reason

no reason
no URL
no promotional tactics
no clear brand names
no sponsors
no demarcated advertising spaces
no objective reality
nothing but pure expression
no message
no ideology
no me me me
no publicity
no self-promotion
no target market
no sales strategy
no intended effect
no political agenda
no common sense
no widespread idea
no commercial agenda
no professional layout
no DPS trump card
no shortcut
no goal
no destination
no providence
no guardian angel
nothing but the truth
no future
no past
nothing but present
no confusion
no importance
no consequence
no preconception
no lucky break
no propaganda
no diametric opposite
no consistency
no uniform
no fame
no hype
no celebrity
no image rights
no royalties
no ownership
no property
no possession
no ugly mistakes
no ignorance
nothing but faith
no pretence
no deceit
no guilt
no hell
no reason

What If Everyone In The World Was Like You?

What if everyone in the whole world shared your view of it? Imagine every person you met just knew that things are the way they are. It wouldn’t even feel like ‘your’ point of view any more, just ‘the’ point of view.

Intellectual jerk: “I’d be so bored”

Sure, you would. But do your daily interactions reflect this? When someone else fails to understand you, do you recognize it as a blessing, an entertainment of life’s unpredictable charm? Or would you prefer simply not having to deal with it? In other words, a world where everyone shared your view of it? Back to square one?

Moral wank: If you take on the challenge of these misunderstandings you’ll be engaged with ‘life presenting’, rather than bored with being right.

Intellectual jerk: “I know I’m right (because I believe in myself, God, etc)”

Don’t we all believe that if everyone preferred the democratic voting system, belief in a monotheistic God and vanilla ice-cream, the world would be a better place? Isn’t home base simply ‘right’ in some ways? Haven’t we spent our Sunday mornings and school days being issued with proclaimations from a number of incontrovertible authorities that it’s THIS way or the wrong way, not because we’ve explored the options but because such authorities been issued the same story from their predecessors? From OUR predecessors?

Moral wank: Listen to other people if you want to hear what you (or God) are saying. Your conscience – the voice of God inside you – is always reacting, but only when you hear it do you know yourself to be right or wrong.

Intellectual jerk: “I have experienced deep peace and happiness as a result of my world view.”

Your experience certainly is the ultimate teacher. What if everyone had experienced what you have? Every birthday party you’ve been to, every time you’ve been shocked by static electricity, every person you’ve every said hello to – these were all completely understood by every person you met. Would your common history have the same impact on every individual, or would the necessary differences between people translate into different reactions? Even if you had a deep sense of peace as a result of your world view, does that mean everyone who tries vanilla loves it?

Moral wank: While your experience is the ultimate authority, it cannot be projected onto anyone else with predictable results.

Intellectual jerk: “I don’t think the world would be better or different.”

Perhaps you’re someone who’s deeply in touch with their flawed humanity, and you answer with a firm ‘no’. You see that if everyone was like you, the world would be no different, or perhaps even worse. So do you really believe it? If everyone on earth had a negative self-image, wouldn’t it just seem like everyone was completely normal? Wouldn’t it be rendered normal to avoid eye-contact, meaningful discussion and sincere love between you and others for fear of being disapproved of? Isn’t that how we already are?

Moral wank: The capacity with which you CAN believe yourself to be worthwhile and important is the capacity with which you already DO. If you have latent worries about how valuable you are, drop such self-defeating doubts and entertain the idea that both you and other people already see your worth. You realize that some already do, and more follow you when you follow yourself. The results are instant.

The End

Being an integral part of the world is everyone’s ideal, isnt’ it? Do you see the part you’re playing yet? Imagine everyone knew what part they were playing, right now, by doing it with their every day. Do you think the difference in viewpoints would matter then?

Live recording to teach English

Did something new today which I’ve been thinking about for a while, and it was a hit. Using Ableton Live, the live looping software I use to create music, I walked around a class of 25 students recording them chanting the target language. Then, we played it back with a beat and a bassline, as if they were all suddenly the pop singers in a karaoke bar! I get the feeling it really worked for a few reasons.

Doing something creative establishes my teaching methodology as fun from the start, and encourages students to familiarize themselves with an interactive teaching style that leaves no room for sleepers or The Blank Stare. Engaging with them through the rich medium of sound (instead of text) is an absolute necessity for any teacher nowadays with students under 25 years old.

I’m quite excited by this. It didn’t feel like work.


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