The Stone

Posted in Thoughts by netscheri on April 6, 2008

Song of the Moment:
TIME SLIP – L’Arc~en~Ciel (2000)

It turns out now, that ‘Time Slip’ is very relevant. My silly mother fervently insisted that the clocks should be turned forward an hour instead of back. In having corrected my mother, I feel all happy that I’ve ‘gained’ two hours as it is now established that it is four, not six.

Did you enjoy the last opinion piece? I hope you did, because there’s going to be at least one more.

I thought that I’d kill two birds with one stone, so to speak (I seem to have acquired quite a fondness for that phrase recently), so I’m brainstorming and posting at the same time. Actually, now that I think about it, I’m trying to kill three birds with one stone, since I’m going to try to extort all the feedback on the ideas I can from everyone and anyone.


1. This isn’t really an opinion piece idea. But it could be. Though it’s unlikely.
Amazon.com’s international shipping rates are sneaky. Imagine the sensation when you realise that the shipping fee is practically equal to the cost of what you’re buying. Or the bewildered surprise when you read “Save $30 and pay only $103.74 instead of $133.74!” when you believe that your purchases total less than $80. There should be a more efficient method of freighting.

2. This isn’t really an opinion piece idea. And it’s unlikely that it will ever be one.
OpenID is awesome.

3. This isn’t really an opinion piece idea. Though it’s quite likely that Creative would like it to be one.
The Creative Zen is pretty awesome. Maybe even more awesome than its predecessor, the Creative Zen Vision M?

4. This is really an opinion piece idea. How manipulatable a blog is.
I wonder if anyone has really noticed. The administrator/author of a blog can change so many things. Well, at least in WordPress. I’m too familiar with Blogger, etc. I can change the apparent date that this was published. I can change what others say in their comments. And from the outside, no-one can really tell. But is this an issue? Most are aware of how subjective blogs are anyway.

5. Alternatives to the newspaper. Good or bad?
I’m not too knowledgeable about this, but I find it interesting. Should I go there? I actually subscribed to the paper recently. So now, from Monday to Saturday, it’s delivered to my letterbox before 6 am (am curious as to who does the delivering – paper runners? postpeople?)  Obviously, I thought that there were advantages to having the paper in well, paper form as opposed to the internet. Though I don’t think the main reason – that I get too easily distracted – on the internet should be mentioned. The whole format feels different. Hmm. I don’t have too strong an argument, do I? I am wondering whether subscribing was a good idea. I can never finish reading the paper. It takes about an hour for me just to get through the News and World section. Are we really facing the death of the newspaper? Is this good, bad, or just unavoidable? What are the consequences? I’m not too keen on this idea, since it requires some research on my part.

7. Another idea. Changing nature and perception of art forms.
Although this is something that I’ve generally been interested in, and it’s been in the back of my mind for a while, this was brought into the foreground of my mind by a friend telling me that hyde couldn’t sing. (This is a different friend from the one who thought all of L’Arc’s music sounded the same. My friends, as a whole, don’t seem to like L’Arc very much). The instant response that came into my head was that I thought hyde had a good voice and could sing well, thank you very much. But our differences of opinion got me thinking. What should be the standard or benchmark for ‘good’ and ‘bad’ in terms of music and art nowadays? Is it to be judged on pure technical skill? Or something else?

8. Superficiality and Appearances?
Yesterday I had four teeth pulled out in preparation for braces (I’m getting my braces laate, at the time when most people have already had theirs taken off, or are getting them taken off within the year). It wasn’t a very painful process. A little strange. Usually when I go to the dentist for a filling, etc. I don’t know the purpose of about half of what he does inside my mouth. But when I went to get my teeth pulled out, there was no mistaking what the pulling, pushing and swivelling of my tooth was meant to accomplish. I wondered whether it was all worth it. The teeth, and the pain and discomfort of braces. Another friend of mine (who seems to neutral towards L’Arc) wants to get nose surgery, because the bridge of her nose is too flat for her to wear sunglasses properly. I don’t really have a proper stance on this though. What I think, is that it’s unavoidable – people want to change their appearance. And if they want to, let them. Good or bad, whoever’s chosen to undergo the procedure will bear the consequences of their own decision. However, what I’ve said above, I suppose, is only relevant if it is from free, independent decision. That’s where it gets a bit murky. Free will is probably exercised in most cases (blackmail plastic surgery cases tend to be rare – someone correct me if this is wrong), but how many times is it independent? Gah. Will this have me going on about how the media is bad again? Boring. I don’t really think the media is bad. Rather, I think it’s incorrect to try to bring everything that is out there under the single term as ‘media’. Not terribly keen on this idea.

9. Technology, on the whole, turned out to be rather a bad thing.
It seems rather strange for me to say this, doesn’t it? I experience technolust, am happy staring at the computer screen for hours and am taking advantage of orthodontic technology to get myself a pretty new smile. But I’ve been thinking about it. And the disadvantages to technology seem to outweigh the advantages to it. From technology, what have we gained? Sure, there’s a greater standard of living, and everything is so much easier, but is that in itself, really an advantage? (If I do write about this, it’s going to turn out to be very moralising. I dislike moralising.)



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