Old Post: Fiendish Detachment

I ate an unhealthy amount of fermented milk this morning. This has nothing to do with the days post whatsoever, just thought it was important somehow.  It’s all good though, I ate an equally unhealthy amount of babies to mop up all that milk…[insert suitably evil laugh].

“Yoghurt and a cheese sandwich is the breakfast of champions” methought, when I woke up this dark and dismal morning…

Bad idea.

The yoghurt was slightly off and the cheese (made by a certain wicked corporation which refuses to quit milking the endangered laughing cow, bos grinon-idyoticalus) was hard enough to crush diamonds with. Meal of champions my ASS (Applied Sciences Society)!

Luckily, even though I am not tall enough to be irresistibly appealing to the fairer sex, I am not short enough to get constant heartburn (I am dark and handsome though, two out of three ain’t bad I guess).

Back to the topic (coincidentally the title of a video made for filibusters, politicians and women’s rights campaigners… and several others including apparently one that would get me slammed for being ‘anti-semetic’… … … oops).

My free thesis today is on a particularly curious trend that grows curiouser and curiouser every year. The plague on trial is social, physical, psychological and Freudian (not really, just thought that it would be a nice time to spice up my post with a bit of psychoanalytic babble). Curiousest of all, it seems to target the young more than the aged, a kind of reverse stroke/cardiovascular problem/brittleness of bones thing. I call the disease, detachment (pronounce it like you’re French; “dey-tach-man”, if you feel like being posh and expert-like).

Detachment, the curious situation which results from a curiouser attachment to personal digital devices and deprives a naturally gregarious homo sapien of his social instinct. The affected specimen (a close biological relative of the chitter-chattering, flea-picking, ass-sniffing primate known as the chimpanzee) loses all the real social interactivity which is characteristic of its biological family: gossip (chitter-chattering), tactile contact (flea-picking) and ass-kissing (the only kind of gregarious contact in which our species skill had exceeded the lowly chimp).

There are varying levels of affliction. Victims vary between acute: constantly listening to music on phone/walkman/ipod with one earbud occasionally ostentatiously placed outside of its biological receptacle…

To chronic: simultaneously tweeting, BBing/IMing and listening to music…

And to tragically fatal: simultaneously tweeting, BBing/IMing, listening to music with music-studio type beats by dre headphones, iphone gaming AND facebooking

My fellow researchers (buddies and gal pals) posit that although addiction to social media is a symptom of detachment, the severity of affliction is independent of the degree of the symptom. Simplified for weaker readers; addiction to social media doesn’t necessarily equate with detachment.

Detachment is more like a kind of new era pseudo-autism. In an online society where you are judged by your photo-shopped profile pics, retweeted smarts and ‘number-of-strangers-I-know’, it’s much easier to feel superhuman. We have essentially stored part of our psyche; our essential persona and most importantly our self-esteem in cyberspace (see how many of us started hyperventilating when we heard rumours about facebook shutting down… life hard oo!).

Kinda reminds me of my reflections after watching that movie with the ‘yippie ka-yay mother******’ dude… Smel Ribson or something; Surrogates. Whilst the compatriots who were almost as deep as paper [sarcasm] said “duhh, I don’t get it” and those who were much smarter than themselves [inverted sarcasm] thought “pshht! That stuff is impossible, ah! See obroni (white man), lying as always, awam nkoaa”. I took time to stew and realized that that was me, or more accurately, that was us.

We interact through surrogates now. At least in the movie Smel didn’t forsake tactile contact like we’ve begun to. We’re so afraid of injuring not our bodies, but our psyches, that we project ourselves as ‘mighty mighty’ (see award winning comedy producer, Chuck Lorre’s Mike and Molly S1 Ep. 1) on a plane in which we really can’t exist.

Enough of the serious stuff though, heard the term cyber cahoneys? (balls, big-boys, guts, chutzpah, grits, vim, ani3den etc.). Noticed lately how full of beans people can seem on the socialweb, and then how lame they actually are in life… nuff said. I’m not saying I’m excluded though, wish I could say that I’ve actually talked to even 50% of the hot girls on my facebook friend list!

I am only concerned about detachment because of its implications for humanity. In a world with; environmental problems, a widening gap between rich and poor, widespread poverty, discriminatory hate and crime, doesn’t this plague remove the fix-it generation from the world crises?

It’s a further decomposition of what I like to call the human tele-empathic trait; ‘feelin’ the pain of anotha brotha’. The effect could be tragic (not counting the loss of the next Einstein as he crosses the street lost in his ipod playing at ‘public broadcasting’ volume levels).

P.s. I seriously miss the good ol’ days when a fella with real cahoneys could hit on a hot girl whilst in transit in public transport, nowadays they’re all on their BB machines going tick-tick-tickity-tick at 120 LPM (lols a minute). Let’s not even talk about the evils of the iphone… an app with instructions to fix every possible PC error?! Horrors, now there’s not gonna be any more fixit calls! (distant cousin to the booty call).

 

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Give Me Love – Poetry in Two Tongues

The Following poem was actually written in my local Language, Akan/Twi. The Translation below it embodies as much as possible, the feelings of the original words, as well as trying to maintain some form of poetic meter.

Spelling guide:

  1. ae – pronounced as if you’re saying the letter ‘i’
  2. ó – Like the o in god
  3. gy- a soft j sound, like in jerk
  4. ky – like the ‘ch’ in chips
  5. é – eh, like literally, saying eh. Or the e in keg
  6. hw – like the schw in schweppes (that is literally the closest sound I could think of).

Original

Ódó kasa
na mengyae su
firi sé wonkoaa
na wo fata me do
hó ne hó yi deé
mempé o
ka kyeré me o
ka kyeré me o

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A Tale of 222 Speed Mumps…I mean bumps

They were the best of roads, they were the worst of roads…. Blah blah blah. I run over so many road bumps today that the thoughts in the mind are probably still all mixed up. Where was I? … Roads!

See in the beginning there were people; naturally selfish, perpetually hungry and always interested in the pursuit of happiness (money, shelter, food, water, booze and ‘you know’ [wink wink]). The situation most ideal to their selfish selves was to aggregate into communities which would facilitate this ‘pursuit of happiness’ (usually at the disadvantage of some poor idiot).

 Communities grew, and for various reasons, independent minded homo sapiens left to form new communities.

Reasons for leaving might have included:

  1. fights over whose turn it was to wash the dishes
  2. uncomfortable situations caused by the aforementioned ‘you know’
  3. realization of the fact that one’s idiocy was being exploited (moving wasn’t really a solution for that), and finally,
  4. occasional disagreements with the system of government – which at the time was simple: authority belonged to the man with the biggest stick. (as in reference with might and strength oo, Get your mind out of the gutter!)

Some communities eventually decided to trade, visit and generally hob nob with each other. Also for various reasons:

  1. trying to figure out the other folks’ secret production technique
  2. as an excuse to travel to greener grass for ‘you know’ (you’d be surprised how much hinged on this ‘you know’ thingy)
  3. getting gifts to surprise the wife (and also ease guilt over non-sanctioned acts of ‘you know’)
  4. and generally to check up on the Joneses and see if your happiness was just as good, or better, than their brand.

To get from town to town we made paths. The use of carts and horses meant wider paths which we then called roads (Route Over A Dry Surface).

The Romans perfected the rudimentary road in order to make them more efficient to form part of an efficient highway system to encourage an efficient administration system and aid an equally efficient army to move between provinces (the Romans were strangely addicted to efficiency, take an Intel chip back to them and they’d probably have found a way to make it more efficient).

Roads became even more annoying when the humble horse was replaced with the internal combustion (not the type which occurs in the farther ends of the large intestine) engine to forward industrial development. (because replacing manure and piss with noxious gasses was an obvious improvement [sarcasm?]).

As usually happens, someone found a way to mess up a good thing. Some genius woke up one day and thought, “Let’s prevent people from going too fast from one place to another, let’s intentionally set out to make the roads so poor that those speed maniacs will have no choice but to slow down.”

Said genius invented a road feature more irritating than potholes (I’m sorry if you think potholes are not a road feature, in my part of the world they are an integral part of road and highway design). Potholes were ‘dodgable’, speed bumps on the other hand…[sigh]

There was, in all this mania for the application of forceful, undodgable, speed retardants; an island of calm in the country in the centre of the world (more or less).

On this blessed isle, speed signs were regarded as one of two things; a polite suggestion or, a German autobahn speed restriction reading effectively as, “Would you mind making sure your vehicular speed does not drop below the speed indicated on this signboard. Thank you and have a nice day”

Some genius obviously figured that this island of peace could not remain untouched, I mean, their happiness shouldn’t be more than the rest of the country at the centre of the world should it?

Wise quote: “ ‘Tis not the speeding which is the problem, ‘tis having the idiocy to commit yourself to a sudden stop that causes all the mishap”

The residential area of the island caught the speed mumps… I mean bumps, first. Suddenly cars which whizzed along so fast that they were either devilishly suicidal or just flying too low… trundled gingerly over these mega speed rumps like, arthritic, cancer-ridden centenarians [sob].

It was the end of an era and the beginning of no revolution (what d’you expect? these are the citizens of the center of the world we’re talking about here.)

The speed mumps…. I mean rumps, weren’t so bad. However, years after the first attack a second attack took place… these weren’t the speed mumps, it was the speed measles!

It was as if the Easter Bunny moonlighted for the authorities and went around putting down speed strips instead of Easter eggs. And these weren’t your ordinary run-of-the-mill speed rumps/ bumps/rumble strips. If you thought the old ones were bad you were mistaken… the old ones wore down eventually. The old stuff was the devil, this new stuff was Microsoft!!!

The old ones were made out of the same stuff roads were made out of – paving blocks or asphalt , the new stuff was pure bee-coloured (black and white) steel riveted into the road. Good news [sarcasm], steel takes a looooooongg time to wear down.

Like I said before they’re a lot… enough to confuse a large thin bee looking for a mate. Fella would think we nailed a ton of bees all around the island as an act of large-thin-long beescrimination (beeicide?).

Placement of the metal strips was extremely inspired [sarcasm again]. The quota had been set, the strips had been bought, to hell with over-procurement! The strips had been got and they were damned well going to be placed! First, where pedestrians crossed; then where pedestrians might cross; then where cars might need to join a different stream, then … where other strips were feeling lonely and requested for some extra company.

The strips were devious, they let the pedestrians cross alright, but they also caused pileups at some places. Example: the main entry point into the island every single morning and evening like clockwork.

The questions remain unanswered: Whose idea was this? Were any studies conducted before implementation? Were any of the transportation or highway design greybeards of the island consulted? Was this about the money, the prestige, the politics or the people? Will I ever stop using way too many bracketed statements in my blog post? Will ‘gob3’ ever become a US Army staple ration food?…

Ouchies!! (Agyaei!!) My head aches, too many questions.

gtg. L8r ppl.

P.S. The $1,000,000 for the capture of the Easter bunny still stands, charges include wrongful moonlighting, crossing cultural lines with harmful materials, misrepresentation, forgery, public annoyance and working under the influence.

Update: This post was originally published on 08/03/2011. Since then new bee-colored strips have appeared, Microsoft’s supremacy of evil has been exceeded by Google and the reward for the capture of the Easter Bunny has been upped to $2,500,000.

Much ado About Nothing Really

Hello again friends, after a long much deserved vacation (yes, I know it doesn’t seem like I deserved it, but then you forget, I’m a government worker) your favourite cynic is back with his sage (,rosemary and ginger) reflections on the state of matters as they stand (or sit).

Those of you who are fans of the bracket statements will be glad to know that I resisted an intervention to that note.

Those of you who didn’t like ‘em, well, tough tomatoes, (which incidentally are never ever really that tough… trust me, I checked) you’ll have to get in line behind my word processor, a battalion of English teachers and of course a large group of appropriately attired solicitors.

As it is, once again I started typing this post with absolutely nothing to say. This means, once again, I’ll have to make it up as I go.

(don’t fret peeps, the last couple American administrations have been running their country the same way and look ..how… well … ….Ok, maybe that wasn’t the best example )

Que sera sera, let’s carpe the diem (pidgin Latin).

To those interested in knowing, no, my word processor has not yet abstained from gleefully applying itself to my typed work [sigh]. The squiggly red, green and blue lines have now become a mainstay on my screen.

As if that wasn’t enough, yahoo, facebook, tweetdeck and a dozen others have decided that the red squigglies might be a good idea. The Red squigglies are the most annoying when they appear under your given name. I mean wtf?! (Where’s the Fridge!), my name isn’t West! (heyyyy, that’s not a bad Hollywood baby name, sure beats Apple, Blanket and Kal-el don’t it?).

But let’s not digress

(which was the whole idea behind this whole piece so I guess that was [sarcasm]).

I get the Greek story of medusa. Ever come across a lady so fine you just have to stop and stare, it’s like you’ve seen fireworks.

(yes, I like Katy Perry and OneRepublic. Sue me! – but you will have to get in line behind an upsettingly long line of aforementioned solicitors)

It doesn’t matter that the chick got punished by a goddess; (from making people turn into stone figuratively, to making it happen literally? Goddess sure must have had a bizarre sense of humour) in a twisted way, a head of snakes was kind of the greatest Ms Universe crown ever bestowed.

The next topic we’re going to skip to – me learning driving. To those of you who know me well, I’m spatially challenged. My balance is almost perfect, my reflexes are okay, but my perception of space must have been reincarnated from Salvador Dali’s dreams (to those of you who don’t know… … Google it).

I can’t even remember the last time I caught a pair of keys tossed to me (which makes me wonder why people keep on tossing the damn things to me). This has given me an unhealthy fear of gutters, which, in my side of town, remain uncovered. I might be getting the hang of the car’s space though… I think. For now, however, I will have to try and restrain my trigger happy accelerator (a.k.a gas) pedal foot.

([in a slightly insane crescendo] “it feels the need… the need for speed” [insert maniacal laughter, a la Jim Carrey’s Mask])

If I ain’t dead from the urges of my Carrey-esque alter-personality, I will, hopefully, be giving weekly blog updates on both of my blogs. The more pagan amongst you might want to pour a couple of drops of libation, or make a few sacrifices (whichever works) to the gods of the public holiday… … the rest… just pray and fast.

Ever since I was employed by the government, the public holiday is my only respite. The craziness however resents the restrictions imposed by formal employment; this blog still remains one of the few ways to give it a field day. More field days = more posts.

P.S. If office workers call and school children call ‘em: field days, what do farmers call them?

L8r, and “May the squigglies be with you!”

This post was originally published on my old blog on 05/09/2011. On 15/06/2013, Mr. Kanye West welcomed his baby girl into the world. She was named after a cardinal direction. I told it (kind of) 649 days in advance: a full year, 9 months and 10 days!

Love and Related Diseases: The Bulletproof Idiot

Certain people have high self esteem, the rest don’t. It’s the same way certain people are beautiful and the rest… ernghhh! [loud buzzer sound].

The world seems to be horribly unfair this way, but in truth, maybe it isn’t. I’m just sayin’. Before I go off on one of my irrational tangents again (for an engineering major, it’s amazing how long it took me to actually understand the tangent principle… I guess that’s what they mean when they say “leave space for miracles”).

Talking about leaving space for miracles, a friend of mine (atypical statement for people referring to themselves in the third person to avoid embarrassment) was reminiscing lately on the good old days

(good old days is an extraction (inverse of the word contraction) of the phrase “gold days”)

I remember writing a dubious paper in prison school dubbed torture maths (a.k.a elective torture).

In the world of words that are an understatement; ‘torture maths’ reigns as supreme overlord, dictator and potentate. The math master somehow set questions that defied probability. I mean it should be impossible to score 04 (over 100, not 10) in a paper with a 40 question multiple choice section right?

Wrong!

No space for miracles, not a single dotted line. [Sigh] Good times, good times [blatant sarcasm].

Interestingly enough this post has nothing to do with exams. I just tangented (see me inventing new words again, a credit to my English teachers I am) to that topic as a celebration of my last university paper (God willing, lecturer not forbidding).

This post is about innocence lost. Where ‘innocence lost’ of course implies a certain level of cynicism. As a carrier of the cursed XY chromosome set, I came into the world… well… cursed.

(In a matter of speaking. Hyperbole people, it’s just exaggeration… Someone might take this literally and go all holy water and incense on me… No! Don’t be like you don’t know. You know yourself!)

The curse was simple. In the family of epic vampire and werewolf novellas, at the dawning of that phase called adolescence all arrows would point to the formerly despised XX’s and spears would begin to rattle at the slightest… y’all know what I mean.

(at this juncture I find it necessary to inform all minds to watch out for the gutter,… minds already in the gutter should please extricate themselves and follow the clearly marked neon signs to the bathroom to clean up)

The thing about human being’s only using 3% of their brains computing power is hogwash. As an adolescent, a friend of mine personally informed me, he used 25% of his brain power. The sad is, 24.9% percent of that power was furiously performing analysis of moods, actions, words and looks from the XX species. The sadder is, the brain was working a ‘cos90’ job trying to form an analysis.

I personally have nothing against the Eve-kind. Some of my best friends are of the Eve kind. It’s just that some days make me lay awake nights pondering: When the good Lord removed a rib to create Eve why did he remove the most complex one?

On the plus side, as hairless mammals we have one thing on our side…

(not opposable thumbs, thumbs are simply tool manipulators that allow modern man to engage in vital pursuits such as channel surfing and mobile gaming)

I was talking about A-D-A-P-T-A-T-I-O-N!

There is no big mystery when you try as many methods of approach as possible till you hit the jackpot (jill-pot?).

In truth, I understand very little. This vexes me because some of my close species members are of the mind that I do. I am just about as clueless as a honey badger in a wasp’s nest, or a little bit more so.

I have waded through the morass of male-female interaction based on several random interaction-reaction theories. My favorites will I now reveal to you so that you too reader, may achieve (dis)enlightenment!

One of my early favorites was the Brownian Theory. To understand the XX one must first clear the mind. Focus on his center… and give up! To apply a specific model to feminine behavior is impossible so why try, no?

This theory was inspired by the Brownian motion thingy as applied in prison-school level chemistry. If different females and their thinking are like random particle motion, the key rule is MOVE NOT! If you sit still enough for long enough, (and get enough bum-sores in the process) a random particle will bop you on the head before you know it.

Beware however, in the spirit of Brownian motion, you may never get hit (sad, sad story).

My current turn of tactic is one I would like to call the Bulletproof Monk… or more accurately the Bulletproof Idiot.

First the Idiot; one must accept his cluelessness (as done by a friend of mine) and embrace it. To deny your cluelessness is to deny yourself.

(To actually always have a clue is too much work in the first place)

Next is the bulletproof; if you’re going to get shot (down), the least you can do is wear bulletproof vest, no? A friend of mine revealed that three of his fave vests are sarcasm, cynicism and humour.

 For added safety on extreme missions, layering of bulletproof vests is not only allowed, it’s a must, after all like the marines: “we take care of family” (may possibly be a misquote from the Mafia or something.)

The bulletproof idiot is much more effective than the Brownian theory. The ‘Bulletproof Idiot’ means that every time you go after someone, it’s someone you like. You don’t have to keep on evaluating random hits for dating suitability.

Theory is one thing however… wish my friend luck in his pursuit!

This article does not by either inference or similarity mean to demean any sex. Any demention (demeaning?) is totally coincidental and unintentional. Notice is also given that comedic license is in force.

No bullets, monks, ‘friends of mine’ or idiots were harmed in the making of this post.

Certified by the ISPBMFMIANE (International Society for the Protection of Bullets, Monks, Friends of Mine, Idiots and Associated Non-represented Entities)

Creating a memorable Antagonist.

A surprisingly helpful piece!

Ricky's chamber

          There are a myriad of characters that play many different roles in novels and comics. Of them all, I find the antagonist, or the villain, if you will, most intriguing. In my part of the world, the antagonist has a different name; a name that screams “Guilty!” and goes straight to the point – Killer. Who is a killer and what criteria must a character meet to earn the infamous badge of the antagonist?

              Pay attention; antagonists hate to be misunderstood. An antagonist is a being or creation of any kind that is capable of emotion and has the intellectual ability to plot against your protagonist. The antagonist must act to keep the protagonist (referred to as ‘Blowman’ where I come from) from achieving his/her goals. The antagonist may be the one enslaving a kingdom with dark…

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Reflections of a Dreamer

Looking back, as I often do, I remember how much of a dreamer I was. I would sit in class and just stare up out of the window.

My teachers, God bless them, didn’t know what to do with me. Dreaming was my hobby, ailment and cure (which prolly explains why I came to love sleep that much ). The love of reading which my parents bred into me didn’t help much either, it just gave me a million worlds to run away to when my mind wandered (like I hear they often do In Bolton)

It’s been an interesting journey so far, dreaming has made me a better designer and my experiences have given me focus. I see big things in the future for our startup, 4th Repvblik and a lot of those can only happen with dreams which we work towards transforming into reality.

I am creativity
I am design
I am the man who doesn’t see
Boundaries in lines
I am the future
Cos inside my mind
I see the beauty
In seeking the fine