Sunday, 26 September 2010

Short Sweet Sweat

30-minute cross-trainer workout:

Rollins Band - Get Some Go Again
Slipknot - Psychosocial
Korn - Blind
Megadeth - A Secret Place
Eric B. & Rakim - Follow The Leader
Megadeth - I Thought I Knew It All
Rollins Band - Disconnect

FUCK yeah!

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Eavesdrop on a train (2)

Coming home from work this time, on one of those tiny two-carriage trains that seems only fit for struggling between villages on obscure branch lines but are occasionally used for longer journeys. This one was going all the way to Penzance, stopping just about everywhere on the way like a highly predictable mystery tour, and at Totnes a dumpy middle-aged fuckwit got on with a bloke who was either her Dad or the world's worst sugar-daddy. She spent most of the time talking in a too-loud voice about absolutely nothing - another example of someone who talks a lot but says nothing, who just makes noise to hide the utter pointlessness of their existence. Yes I'm being harsh but I do despair of people who've managed to make it to their late forties without evolving beyond the babbling idiot they were in their early teens. Older doesn't always mean wiser, but it does seem to mean wider... As I got off the train I noticed she was showing her companion one of the apps on her iphone and I cringed - not because of who my employers are but because someone who probably feels proud of themselves for getting their shoes on the correct feet on the first attempt can afford a piece of kit like that while I'm struggling to fend off the bank.

Today's enlightening comment was this: "She said she can't leave the house in case it gets done over. I mean, what's she got that's worth nicking?"

To paraphrase Jethro: "Anybody can be stupid but she's abused the privilege"...

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Eavesdrop on a train (1)

Sunday morning and the first train out of Plymouth is delayed by over 30 minutes due to a mechanical fault that means the driver can't disengage the brake - cue train manager walking back and forth with increasing agitation until the train starts up and we all get to breathe a little easier.

Meanwhile the two women sat behind me had been chatting incessantly and from their talk I guessed one was much younger than the other. It turned out I was wrong: they were of a similar age, it's just that one was obviously much less emotionally mature than the other. Apart from the usual petty chit-chat about other people, regularly interspersed with criticisms of their behaviour, there was one comment that I found so utterly contemptuous I could have slapped the soppy tart who said it if only I could have stopped myself from laughing out loud at the same time.
They were looking at text messages on a mobile and the comment was "Why does hers have that little blue arrow on it? No-one else's does." The tone of voice implied that the woman who'd sent the message had been showing off by attaching a blue arrow to the icon of her text messages. When the recipient of the text said "Oh, no - that just means I've replied to her" there was a brief pause followed by the sound of rusty cogs grinding into unaccustomed movement and then the tentative and somewhat disappointed reply, "Does it?"
At that point I prayed the useless bitch was sterile.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

I just don't get it - part 1

Yes, part one because there are so many things I just don't get.

This one is about behavioral patterns, so I should imagine there'll be more repetitions of this than anything else. What I don't get is this: the grown woman who behaves like a spoilt child - you know, the one who talks like a gobby teenager mouthing off to her parents or like a petulant idiot who thinks everything revolves around her. The one who's raison d'etre seems to be attention-seeking, who takes her bad mood out on those around her (while claiming that not only does she not do it but other people do) and who is incapable of taking responsibility for her own actions. Then there's the bloke who always has to push things - he likes to wind people up and will joke around as much as possible, even to the point of upsetting others. He's the guy who'll ask if you want a drink and, on hearing 'no', will always ask 'are you sure?' - not because he's interested in buying you a drink, but because he knows the question (repeated if necessary) will annoy you and that's what he likes.

The 'woman' is obviously still a spoilt 12-year-old used to being Daddy's Little Princess, emotionally speaking, and the 'man' maybe around 14 and conversely likes to play power games with Daddy, although I know someone aged 15 who's been a wind-up merchant since the age of around 7 and I know full well it's down to his parents. The questions that arise from this, for me, are: why do some people get stuck in particular behavioral patterns from their childhood? What is it that anchors people to a point in their past? Some people have a traumatic experience that acts as their anchor - maybe all of them (us?) do, or maybe the experience doesn't even have to be traumatic to be the thing that holds a person still, stops their growth, fixes them at a point in time. What happens to people to cause this arrested development? How many people are even aware of that part (those parts?) of themselves that remain unchanged from childhood? How many have even the vaguest clue how little of their potential they're going to fulfil thanks to that one thing holding them back?

For me, the most important question is typically selfish: what's mine?

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Eavesdrop - probably the first of many.

Neighbours in the back garden chatting. 2 friends have been to India independently - one loves it, one hates it. One trots out what he knows is a clichéd story of a gifted child who started his education in a hut and gradually rose to become a consultant radiologist. He includes the factoid that at the age of 6 he had to walk 5 kilometres to get to the 'school' for which his family all chipped in as his parents couldn't afford it on their own. The female companion of one of them comes out with the 'kids in this country wouldn't walk to school' bullshit and then my interest disappears as rapidly as the rather cute woman's head buried itself up her pert little backside. It's far too easy to vomit out trite, sneering cynicism, especially when directed at a group you have no direct contact with or experience of. Such a shame; to be unable to avoid clichés even from people who at first glance are intelligent and worldly. Still, as repeatedly pointed out in John Brunner's “The Shockwave Rider”; intelligence can be engineered, wisdom cannot, and it's wisdom we need.