Monday, February 11, 2008

Goodbye, God.

I think the time has come, after many, many years of blissful hope against the odds, against all odds, to admit the truth, to myself and to others:

There is no (personal) God, hearing our pleas or caring about us.

There is no Jesus Christ, in whose name we were supposed to ask for - and get - anything.

"Prayer" only helps if it injects you with the mental or physical energy to accomplish what you're asking for.
If you are too weak - too broken, too sad, even too hungry, too destitute... you're on your own. There is no God who is going to lift a finger to save you, regardless of how precious your thoughts, talents, kindness of heart or whatever is to others - regardless of your beauties, your uniqueness, your gifts.

"He" will only save you if you still have a will to live, in spite of everything - which is what makes you see patterns, a "master plan", where there are none.

But if you are too weak and broken to even breathe... tough!
So die, who cares. So a person or two will suffer because of your death... So?

If there is a "plan" - and I very much doubt it - it has nothing to do with me, personally. Nobody is following my path; nobody is preventing mistakes to happen; nobody is "planning" anything for me. And my one and only, one-in-a-million mother's heart, dreams, confidence in God, generosity, the BEAUTY of her heart... it was all for nothing.

And nobody ever saw - or will see - the brilliance, the dazzling, mind-altering brilliance of my being, of my ideas, of my longing itself. Nobody will mourn them, either - because they'll never know. Either you are "discovered" - or you aren't; either you have sheer luck in life - or you don't. For every Mozart there are thousands of undiscovered Mozarts who perish in poverty and obscurity, their dreams and talents crushed to death by the burdens of mere surviving.

I am too emotionally exhausted - I have wasted much too much of my heart's energy on "prayers" - to even go on writing...

I may add something later on - something written by another person.
Or not.

And it's not like anyone is ever going to read any of this.
Nor do I care one way or another.

Goodbye, sweet angels - goodbye, the sweet dreams of my former life.

I hope you don't fool anyone else ever again.


P.S. If you, the unlikely reader of these lines, still believe, you probably won't believe me, and I don't want you to. My maxim (see my profile), if nothing else, still stands.


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Friday, January 25, 2008

"Arab" is the new Jew

aka "Muslim" is the new Jew

I saw a nice programme yesterday, an episode of the series
Who do you think you are?, about the actress Julia Sawalha's quest for her ancestors. (Her father, the renowned actor Nadim Sawalha, was born in Jordan.)

At a certain point, after filming a group of Beduins in the Jordanian desert, the actress recounted how one of the Beduins asked her, earnestly, whether they (= the crew) were 'making another film that would show that Arabs or Muslims were all terrorists and they should be shot, all of them'. (I am paraphrasing, but it's close enough.)
Of course Sawalha assured him that they were doing no such thing and promised to send him a copy of the programme. 'But he looked me in the eyes, so deeply, as if he weren't quite sure' (= whether she was telling the truth about the intended "message" of the programme), she said.

I felt that was so sad.

What's even sadder... this reticence about Arabs/Muslims is not at all surprising. On a global level I started noticing it - as did you, I am sure - soon after September 11, 2001 (OT: I really wish the Americans would stop calling it "nine-eleven"...), when a little boy in the USA was viciously attacked because he was a Muslim (or maybe just perceived as one, not that it matters).

On a personal level, I've been struck and saddened by this phenomenon ever since I "met" somebody on a philosophy message board. He liked what I had written and told me so in a very kind personal message. I was very glad to receive that message; but, being a friendly gal myself, I made a remark (a very kind one) about the meaning of his nickname which, I had noticed, was Arabic. I am not sure what exactly his feelings were, but by the serious (still kind) tone of his reply I realised that he didn't appreciate the attention I had paid to his nickname.

I wasn't offended (of course) or even embarrassed - but I did feel great sorrow.
I felt deeply sorry for him; I felt sorry for all Arabs and/or Muslims (no, it's
not the same - and that's part of the problem) that they should be forced to screen every single sentence or remark for possible indications of a generalised contempt - or worse - for Arabs/Muslims. And I felt sorry for myself, and for all of us, that the world has come to this.

What's even more disturbing is the openness I've been noticing lately (on message boards and other such public forums) with which those who "don't like" Arabs and/or Muslims express their opinions. So, not even the present-day political correctness (which I normally loathe) can protect people of Arabic origin or Muslim faith against discrimination based solely on their "race" and/or faith...?

That is alarming.

And because I refuse to live in such a world - even though I have to - here I am, writing about it: because writing is a parallel life ("I write, therefore I think") - or rather, a substitute for life, an Ersatz living, if you fancy fancy words.


Judging by the sound of it, my PC is about to take off...
(I can tell it will fly - through the window - if it doesn't shut up.)
I can't work like this; I'll end this post tomorrow.
Or the day after.

Or - hey, this is a good idea! - YOU can end it for me... :)

PS. It's the day after and the PC is still unseemly loud. I cannot be inspired to write under such circumstances. But, luckily, other people are interested in the (more or less) same topic, so here's an interesting article about the perception of Arabs among "Soviet" Jews in Israel:

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008




If you entertain at least a passing interest in »current events«, you would have heard of her by now: the future – or present? – First Lady of France.

A woman whose life is, literally, the stuff of fairy tales.

In case you don't know Carla Bruni, picture a woman who is widely considered a beauty, a seductress – a »muse«, even; who has earned millions upon millions – not to mention the adoration of fans worldwide – for her looks alone, living a glamorous life in some of the most beautiful places of the world; who is highly intelligent and sophisticated and very well-read.

A woman who has lived a life of leisure and luxury – still does, and has done so from the day she was born. Hers is no rags-to-riches story, she is no »white trash«: she was born in a very rich and very cultured family, she grew up in palaces, scented parks, the glitter of European metropoles, and was afforded the best possible education.

In her later life as an international glamour girl, she has met and dated (and dumped) a long line of very high-profile, very talented, very interesting and often very »eligible« men.

She exchanged her life as one of the very few »supermodels« for a successful career as a singer.

And now (well, last November), she met the recently divorced president of France – and is going to marry him.

Do you hate her yet...? ;)

Her name caught my attention because I actually remembered her from before. I've never been into »supermodels« and such, but I was never a militant grey mouse either, let alone a »grunge«, and I worked in the media, so, naturally, I became somewhat acquainted with her name and career.
In fact, it was a single programme what sparked my lasting (albeit dormant, until now) interest in her. I don't remember the title, but it was a mid-1990s series of »portraits« of supermodels. She talked about her papà. 'Everything I did, I did for daddy,' she said, with a peculiar smile. Papa Bruni-Tedeschi, one of the richest men in Northern Italy (which is the richest part of Italy) and heir to a historically illustrious name, died in 1996; and by that time it had surfaced that he wasn't really her papà, not biologically – but that, as painful as it must have been for her, seems only a minor flaw in the miraculous tableau of her life.
(And, after all, the biological papà is also a millionaire. Why does it matter? I am not sure; but according to a certain newspaper, allegedly quoting Carla's mamma a well respected concert pianist – that's what Carla said: that 'Fate had smiled on her', so she has 'two millionaire fathers'. I don't know if it's true; and unless you are Carla – or the mamma – most likely you don't know either.)

I remember that programme and those words about her papà, because it all sounded like an enchanted life to me – the enchanted life I could have had myself (but didn't); and because I, too, would have done a lot for my own papà... had things – or I – and papà – been better. Or just wiser. Less childlike. Less childish.

So, when her name surfaced again a few weeks ago, my interest in her was reignited and I took time to examine that fairy tale life in detail.

Most of it was just as good – or better – than I had remembered or imagined it.

Born into a multi-millionaire family, bearing a historic name (and it's not a bad sounding name, either; its sound is very melodious, not like, say, Pappafava - or even Testaferrata, ancient as they may be), the daughter of a very rich but also very cultured man (papà Bruni composed operas and created a very respectable art and antiques collection) and a very respected concert pianist (I know, I am repeating myself – bear with me: nice things deserve repeating), Carla grew up in palatial surroundings. (And, according to her older sister – who is a bona fide cinematic success in her own right – Carla was ever the budding femme fatale, even as a little girl. Which is important, because it's never too early to acquire power over men. OK, maybe it is... but 'too early' is still better than never.)

At the Bruni-Tedeschi home(s), where she grew up with her two siblings, apparently in harmony, cosy family soirees included merry sing-alongs with the likes of Maria Callas and other musical luminaries.

When Carla was five, the family relocated – for safety reasons – from the castle at Chivasso (Castagneto Po, near Turin) to France, where they divided their time between a villa in the south of France and Paris. After the appropriate period at a »finishing school« (in Switzerland – where else?), by which time she had probably acquired at least an extra language in addition to Italian and French, she took up the study of architecture at the Sorbonne... until her brother's girlfriend talked her into becoming a model.

And so she did. Not a model, mind you – a SUPERmodel. She had the luck of belonging to the first generation of models who ascended (hence the super-) to the then-new category: models who were famous in their own right; girls who were, basically, famous for being beautiful and rich (which they became by being beautiful). Glamorous and handsomely paid jet-setters.
Very soon, Carla didn't need daddy's money (not that he was ever stingy): she earned up to 7 millions dollars (plus change) in a single year.
And yet she stood out even among that very small elite of tall, willowy beauties who – let's admit it - raked in fabulous amounts for showing up more or less fabulously made-up and dressed up and then being fabulously photographed by fabulous photographers. On fabulous locations, by the way.

You think I am making fun of her...?
Perish the thought!

In fact, Carla was the only one who ever admitted – and she did so with relish, with real, mouth-watering gusto – that her life, a supermodel's life, was just that... fabulous.

I think it was that – not the admission itself, but the pleasure that she took in it – what engraved her in my memory, if I may use that antiquated but very a propos expression. Yes, indeed: her life was a fairy tale. Why shouldn't she enjoy that fact? Why should she hide that very public fact from the public?

Yes, I know.

And she knows it, too: to prevent, or at least alleviate, the pangs of bitterness of people whose lives aren't so picture-perfect – whose lives are, in fact, very far from picture-perfect (unless it's a mug shot).

But she didn't and she doesn't hide it.

And her admission does bring out into the open the fact that there are, after all, people who want it all – and have it all. All the time.

And that's the outrageous crime of Carla Bruni: that – not her affairs with married men, not her self-assured »coolness«, not her ambition, not her glamour, not even her relentlessly sunny (yeah, right) life of privilege...

It's her »flaunting« that God-given position of extraordinary privilege that people seem to resent. (If you don't think they resent her... browse around the WWW.)

But what does flaunting really mean?

At the risk of rubbing it even further, I propose we go back (don't worry: it is strictly for edifying purposes) and review her attitude.

Here's a woman who, literally, has it »all«.

(It doesn't really matter whether you like her life-style, or moral values or appearance or whatever. I, for example, find her certainly striking and attractive, but not necessarily my ideal of »beauty«. It doesn't matter; what matters is that, from HER perspective, she really does have it »all«.)

All she does is admit it.

She openly admits that she has had a charmed life: that she was born into an extremely rich and respected family, one with very high cultural values and not extraordinarily dysfunctional; that she did grow up in luxury, traveling around the world, soaking up refinement and culture since day one; that she was very well-educated, both by superior learning and by the inclination of her natural curiosity; that she is considered beautiful or very seductive (or both) by very many people around the world, notably by some of the most visible pop »icons« of the 20th century; what's more, that for her looks alone she did earn in a s single year infinitely more money than most people will ever see in their lifetime.; that she is intelligent and highly educated; that she is successful in whatever she does... That she has done whatever she wanted to – and did succeed in everything she did, be it a new career (singing) or a new man. And that now, she is to be – maybe is already – the First Lady of France.

What is she supposed to say when people interview her about her life?
Admit to all of the above, but concentrate on moaning and lamenting the loss – the very tragic loss – that, sooner or later, befalls every single human being who's had a family or friends? How would that look to the same people who now begrudge her »boasting«? How would her lamenting the heartbreak in her life look to all those who resent her »riches« because they live in misery (real or perceived) – and they also had to, or will have to, go through the same kind of heartbreak, only in materially much less comfortable circumstances?

In reality, people do not resent her.

They – the child in each one of them – resent the incomprehensible »unfairness« of life that most people are confronted with from day one. They mourn for the pure and joyful hopes they had, that were crushed by the reality of everyday life.

Many such people then turn to The Secret(TM) and other such self-help books. They look them up with great hopes, and it is with great hopes that they start with whatever the »program« is... And a few months later their life is the same and they are the »same« - only not really: tehy are perhaps a tad more cynical, a tad more desperate.

And they resent the people who do make it all the more.

Were their hopes really too »unrealistic«?

Or was it, perhaps, that they do not really believe they can make it – no, not really. Not all the way. Not all the way to that place where they feel they should belong.

Because there is no way that one person could go for it all, have it all without provoking the wrath of gods.

I suppose that's why the »(wo)man on the street« has such a profound, almost incomprehensible attachment to, say, Marilyn Monroe: the queen bee of losers. A woman who couldn't handle the piece of pie – admittedly a huge one! – that was handed to her after a not-so-perfect childhood and adolescence, plagued by mental illness, abandonment, and even hunger.

And that's why so many shower their questionable love on another »Cinderella«, a hilariously rich and spoilt (but prone to slumming) one: Diana Spencer, Princess of Wales. She redeemed herself for the privilege of her life by her opportunely early marital dysfunction and »suffering« (the quotation marks are not meant to minimise anyone's suffering – they just point to the fact that nobody really knows much about other people's feelings) – and, of course, her tragic and very early death, at the same, almost-Christlike age as Monroe: thirty-six.

But Carla Bruni is well past thirty-six now - and shows no intention of slowing down or redeeming herself for anything in any way: she just goes on and on, higher and higher... First pretty rich girl, then even richer pretty girl, and now... First Lady of France?! Living in the Elysée Palace, smack in the centre of Paris, dining with statesmen, dancing with crowned heads?!

Doesn't it make you want to cheer...? :)

I know I am rooting for her.

I am rooting for her to pick yet another – and another, and another – golden apple from the bough.

My goals in life are probably not the same as hers.
Or yours.

It doesn't matter.

I am rooting for her, as I am rooting for myself - and for my own »impossible« dreams. Because I know, as I've always known, that there are no impossible dreams (and if you only knew how impossible mine would seem to any »reasonable« person!).

And if you happen to be one of those endless thousands who seem to be reading, or are going to read, books a la The Secret, then you should give thanks to your deity of choice for the example of Carla Bruni.

The example of her life is worth more than a thousand books. Her life has an almost biblical exemplary value: it shows that anything (desirable) really is possible – in a single lifetime, too. That reaching for the stars, whatever they are, isn't crazy. That you are entitled to want it all – and have it all.

That charmed lives really can exist.

Of course not everyone is born under such lucky stars as Carla Bruni; in fact, very few are. But you are living your life from now on, not from beyond the graves of your ancestors on.
So take a thorough look at Carla's splendid life, marred – or should I say ennobled? - only by the inevitable (a loss to a greater power, a power that transcends all things human), review it as if it were your own... and if you feel your heart rejoice, I say you have a pretty good chance in succeeding yourself, in securing your own lasting happiness.

It's not a magic trick, it's not a superstition: it's just means that you are, after all, able to ackowledge that having it »all« – whatever that means to you - really is possible.

Do I idolise Carla Bruni?

God, no! :)

I idolise nobody, with the possible exception of my grandfather (whom I never really knew).

I am not even her »fan«.
(And you can bet I am no Marilyn Monroe's or Diana's fan, either!)

Do I admire her?

Yes and no.

If I admire her, it's not because of any of the circumstances described above, of course. After all, I cannot admire her for the magnificent hand she's been dealt at birth.

But I do admire her determination to go as far as she can with what she was given; to get away with as much as she possibly (or even impossibly) can – all that by perfectly legal and even morally acceptable means. (Well, yes: husbands cannot be »stolen«, boyfriends don't leave – certainly not for good - unless they feel tempted to. And being considered beautiful or charming or seductive is an asset – a perfectly legal one - even in these politically correct times.)

But most of all, I admire her gratitude: to life, to fate, to God... whatever she believes in.

For that's what it is, the »flaunting«. It's open acknowledgment that not every one is so lucky – that, in fact, very very few are so lucky.

And that, my friend, is sheer gratitude.

And gratitude is humility.

In fact, gratitude may very well be the noblest form of humility – the one that is most pleasing to God, if you believe in God.

So, think twice, my friend, before you reject other people's praise of your physique, of your intelligence, of your accomplishments, or even put yourself down before other people, feigning »modesty« and »humility« - when in fact you're demeaning (if only in words) something for what you have no merit at all. It's been given to you: by your parents, by »fate«, by God.

Accept it with joy and gratitude – and aim for Sun and the Moon and the stars.
That's why it's been given to you.

And do not resent, let alone badmouth, the Carla Brunis of this world for having done so themselves.

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Thursday, January 17, 2008





Sky News just went from useless (unless you're a Madeleine McCann fanatic) to... well, uselesser. (Or use-less, as far as this spectator goes. Gotta love them words... :))

There was an »incident« at Heathrow airport earlier today. Much, MUCH earlier today... An emergency landing, to be precise. It was not »terror-related«, there were no victims (or even seriously injured passengers), not even a »spectacular« blaze or crash or whatever. In short: nothing happened.

So why is it that we have to listen to it ALL DAY LONG – and still labeled BREAKING NEWS?

(Which is, by the way, a newly adopted customs by Sky: they don't have »news on the hour, every hour« - now they have »BREAKING news« on the hour, every hour. How is that possible, you ask?
Well, you take any piece of new information considered to be of »general interest« - what was once, not so long ago, called simply news – and you label it BREAKING NEWS... and then keep running it all day long.
If the screen is too cramped, simply remove »excess« information, like the hour – one of the few actually useful pieces of information on the screen. Because everyone knows at all times what the hour is, up to the minute, of course; on the other hand, you may not know that a piece of news is »breaking« unless they tell you so; also, you might forget what their email address is unless they constantly remind you of it. With such an exciting schedule, who needs to see the actual hour? Oh, and don't forget to pad the long minutes between the end of each »on the hour, every hour breaking news« and the beginning of the next round of the same with dramatically repetitive drumming and fanfare...
Apparently, the SKY masterminds never read the fable about the boy who cried wolf. In fact, I doubt very much that they read much of anything, especially not spectators' comments.)

But it's not just SKY anymore; even BBC, usually focused on anything except life in Europe, kept recycling the news about the airport non-event with astounding persistence.

As for CNN...
Oh, please... ;) Who watches CNN anymore?
(Well, except for the occasional Anderson Cooper 360 – he's alright – and the occasional Larry King Live, which, interestingly, works much better in transcripts than »live« (except when he hosts some of his more flamboyant guests, like Sylvia Browne – that's actually worth seeing.).

Why am I ranting about this?

Because I have a special interest in the media and/or any other instruments of mass manipulation (I do not mean this in a necessarily ominous way; I am just deeply interested in the human psyche.)

And because interesting things seem to be happening »out there«. In Texas, to be precise, where apparently a »mile-long« unknown flying object was spotted hovering over a town, with scores of witnesses, including a pilot and a law enforcement officer; and at the Arecibo observatory, where a »mysterious signal« from the outer space was picked yesterday.

Regardless of what they are, at least they are legitimate stories.

Why, then, we have to watch and listen to reports about a literal non-event at London airport? (By the way, I am pretty sure there were other accidents, including fatal ones, somewhere in the world... just not in the »first« world.)

No, really: I am asking you.

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Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Marilyn - a witch in (no) disguise ?

Halloween came early this year.
(Well, the clowns did, at any rate.)

Actually, I don't celebrate it, and it's not only because I am European. Call me crazy, but I fail to see the appeal of perfectly innocent and tasty pumpkins going to waste - and all for... What, exactly?

Besides, I said "Halloween
came" (not viceversa). It came to my doorstep, in the guise of a friendly acquaintance of an indifferent acquaintance of mine who wanted my opinion regarding her upcoming Halloween disguise.
Against my better judgment, I actually invited her in, recklessly disregarding the ominously nondescript-looking sack she was dragging along.

And believe me,
drag is an eerily accurate expression.

No sooner did I ask "tea or coffee?" than she let the hellcat loose (sorry, I still have a crush on Professor Higgins): namely, a blond wig, a white dress with a steep
decollete and an appropriately loose fluff of a skirt, and - but of course - a pair of white high-heels.
(And, rather appropriately, there was no matching underwear in sight.)

'Let the hellcat freeze!', I heard Higgins go off in my head again.

"So... What do you think?" she said. "Do you think I could pull it off?"

('Pull what off?' I thought. 'Everything is off as it is!')

What I actually said, was:
"Oooh, let me guess... Marilyn Monroe? From
The Seven Year Itch?"

"I couldn't decide between, maybe, a witch - like, a really sexy witch, you know? - or Marilyn... Now, I know many are going as Marilyn, but I think it really suits me. And if so, then I have a chance of actually beating all the others... You know? I could be the best looking Marilyn, so it doesn't really matter if..."

"Hey," I interrupted. "There is no real dilemma here!"
(Yes, it's spelled
dilemma - NOT dilemna, dear Marilyn-to-be.)
"It's the perfect choice! After all, Marilyn
was a witch."

Insert a longish silence here.

"What do you mean...?" she said, her lips almost not moving.

('Wow, she could go as a ventriloquist,' I thought, 'carrying a Marilyn puppet as her dummy!')

Now, here's the funny thing... I am actually an extremely kind-hearted person, even if I say so myself. And there are few things that I dislike more than inflicting unnecessary pain, especially where there's a natural, congenital lack of humour. So I tried the long and winding road of explaining what I thought - disregarding that it was just that: a

"Have you read a lot about Marilyn Monroe?" I asked.

"Oh yeah - every book there is!" she said.

(I could see she was still a bit uneasy about me and what must have seemed very peculiar behaviour to her. I mean, come on, who in their right mind would call Marilyn Monroe a WITCH?! "Bewitching", maybe - in the kindest, most angelic sense, of course. Or even, excuse the expression, a
bitch - but not a witch.)

"So you are familiar, I assume, with her purported lack of personal hygiene and..."

She blushed violently - I couldn't tell whether it was from embarrassment or anger - before I could finish the sentence.

"... and her other peculiarities in that department?"

"You mean that disgusting, filthy book about Gable that's just out?!"

Ah yes - now it was clear what had provoked the blush. It was definitely anger. The sacred anger aroused by desecration of something, like... well, sacred. Like, a sacred cow.

"Well, I haven't read it, but I've heard what it says, yes... I have also heard and read many other accounts that do not present her as the most..."

"Well, even if it was true, that still doesn't make her a witch!!!"

(I swear to you: I have never ever used a double, let alone triple, exclamation mark in my writing - but there is no way a single exclamation mark could convey the magnitude of my ex-friendly acquaintance's indignation.)

As you have probably found out yourself at some point in your life - or in Marilyn Monroe's life, if you prefer - even the most kind-hearted witch can become a bitch, or viceversa, or whatever...
I became one at that very moment. If she were "defending" (as if the
late Marilyn Monroe needed her or anyone's defense at this point...!) somebody that she actually knew - or at least met in person - I would have been most respectful of her feelings, regardless of my own opinion about the person in question (I don't have very many established "opinions" about people anyway.) But mindless infatuation with a composite image of an image... that's a bit too much for my sense - or sensitivity - to endure.

I walked to the room where I keep books which were either gifts (I do not "re-gift" - nor do I return gifts) or, for some reason, too... too
something (not good) to find a respectable place in my respectable main library room.

The book I fetched was both of the above.

It is a fascinating book. Even the fact that it was written by what credible sources identify as an extremely despicable character can't take away the sheer truth-value of many things written in it. (I know they are true from my own experience.)
It was given to me by somebody who obviously thought she knew me well enough. Somebody who thought I was "ripe" for (brace yourself) - Satan worship.

What makes the book, which shall remain nameless (for the simple reason that it's easy enough to find out which book I am referring to, unless you need to upgrade your bulbs - and because, Halloween or Shmalloween, I shall not propagate the worship of the said entity, even though I am not sure it even exists), relevant to this particular visitor of mine is the - highly dubious, say many - "fact" that the author of the book supposedly had a tryst with the very "icon"
(insert another icon - a puking one - here) that my visitor was intent on recreating...

Now, I had heard about the alleged affair quite some time before receiving the book. And, frankly, I couldn't care less either way (whether it was true or not, I mean). It was only after I had read the book - diagonally, but it counts (after all, Karl Marx's
Das Kapital, to name just one high-brow - eh, rephrase that into "bushy-brow"- classic, received the same treatment from me) that Miss M and the faux Hungarian (how very Higginsian again!) perhaps, maybe, just maybe, did have whatever they had - and that one of them, at least, profited career-wise from their encounter...

But which one?

You be the judge.

(That's what I said to my soon to be ex-friendly ex-acquaintance, handing her the book - but now that you're in on the
"big secret", it applies to you, too.)

As for me, I'll only say that, while it could be and possibly is, simply a coincidence, it certainly puts the mythical Miss MM's alleged filth and her alleged abundance of nasally perceptible bodily humours and her alleged disdain for petticoats
(yes, it's a euphemism) in a new perspective.

Consider pages 37, 64, 71, 96, 137, 175, 140, 199 - and basically everything in-between - and then tell me if it doesn't...
Well -
tell me, figuratively speaking. Ever since I got this idea rolling (my visitor wasn't the first or only beneficiary of my empathetic wisdom), I've been receiving so much... ehm, feedback - I am sure a police officer or a lawyer would call it something else - that I finally decided to let some time pass before anyone starts insulting me again.
(After all, I do have a life - and I do make it a point of replying to every single question or remark addressed to me.)

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Sunday, June 10, 2007

The shortest drama ever told

Have you ever noticed, when people discuss or are encouraged (think Oprah) to "pursue" their »wildest dreams«, that the latter mostly turn out to be a beautiful car, a vacation in Hawaii (or insert the location of you choice), perhaps »even« a new home...?

It's poignant, of course, that people have such low standards in matter of »dreams«.

So, what follows is the shortest nail-biter you'll ever read.



FAUST: I'd give anything to have my wildest dreams fulfilled!

A flash of dark light appears.

DEVIL: Anything?

FAUST: Anything.

DEVIL: I can fulfill your wildest dreams, and beyond. And I shall, if you give me your most prized possession.

FAUST: My Blackberry?!

DEVIL: I was thinking more in the line of your soul. But I see now that, in your case, the Blackberry would probably be a wiser choice...

OK, that was NOT the version I was talking about. My evil twin wrote the exchange above.
Here is the original one:



FAUST: I'd give anything to have my wildest dreams fulfilled!

A flash of dark light appears.

DEVIL: Anything?

FAUST: Anything.

DEVIL: I can fulfill your wildest dreams, and beyond. And I shall, if you give me your most prized possession.

FAUST: You name it.

DEVIL: You know what it is - you name it.

FAUST: And what if you can't deliver?

DEVIL: Do you have any idea of who I am? The »impossible« does not exist, not in my realm.

FAUST: That's because your dreams aren't wild enough.

DEVIL: Alright. I'll hand you over my power. I'll hand you my very self.

FAUST: It's a deal.

DEVIL: What is it that you want?

FAUST: Make me God.

A flash of dark light reappears.
We never find out what happens next.

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Saturday, May 12, 2007

VOTE FOR THY NEIGHBOURS (and thy brethren in faith, not to mention thy guest workers' homelands)

I've always wondered how many people actually watch (I hesitate to use the word "listen to") the dinosaur called the Eurosong.

It is my suspicion that most people only watch the final voting (which has long since become a self-parody, noticeable to everyone except the voters and the votees, it seems).

But even that has become tedious and boring beyond ridiculousness. After all, anyone who has ever watched it more than two or three times, knows by heart how each country will vote: Andorra will always vote for Spain and for France. Greece will vote for its neighbouring countries (except Macedonia, which it doesn't recognise as a country), with the highest number of votes going to Cyprus (the Greek part, of course), and viceversa. Russia will vote for all its surrounding neighbours and for countries which claim adherence to the Orthodox faith. Turkey will vote for Armenia (oh yeah, that'll take the sting out of the genocide of 1916!), Germany will vote for Turkey, no matter what: it's the country whence most of its foreign »guest workers« come from.

And so on.

The endurance of the cretinous anomaly called the Eurosong is one of the great mysteries of our time. I am pretty sure you have no idea who won last year, even if you did listen to the... ehm, music. With very few exceptions, none of the winners – not to mention the non-winners (who were more often than not actually better than the winners) – faded back into international obscurity whence they had emerged for that single night.

It's the debutante ball for »new democracies« - a sort of Vienna Ball, minus the good music. In other words, it's tacky, wasteful, has no discernible social or even political purpose (even though voting is done almost exclusively on the basis of current politics).

Bring in the clowns already...!
They are way more entertaining and they certainly have more political relevance, free thought - and more durable musical influence.

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