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Thursday, October 16, 2014

Literal Illiteracy

Some say that you are illiterate if you can't use today's devices and gadgets. If you don't have a smartphone, your stupid; if you don't use social media, your antisocial; and if you can't use a computer, you're a Stone-Age relic.

For some reason, these things have come to mean a lot to us. The most important thing in life for many people is Facebook. Or their phone. Or their laptop. Once, my laptop got stolen, and I was amused by the question that I was first asked with considerable consideration: "Was there any important data on you laptop?" The answer I gave humorously was "some anime." The real answer to that question, however, is NO. I do not believe that anyone has any piece of information without which they can't continue their life normally. (There is, of course, the exception of people who actually do actual work  on their computers; but losing the device itself is a long-overcome "problem" since the advent of clouds.)

 If you don't have a Facebook profile, I salute you! I respect the old-fashioned way of living, and I'd like to return to it right now. By old-fashioned  I don't mean nineteenth- or early-twentieth-century life: I'm talking about life no more than a decade ago. I won't claim to have been an outgoing child--although I did play with friends outside and did make many friends and I even sometimes read!--but I didn't have an internet connection or a smartphone.  Prepare for a cliché: Kids/Everyone these days has some electronic gadget. Some schools even adopt some "modern" methods of teaching/learning that incorporate the use of "tablets" in their curriculum. I respectfully disagree with, and disapprove of, these methods. There is nothing that works like reading and writing to promote learning and development. I really feel that these gadgets' role in learning is probably detrimental. How many people do you know that use the internet but still can't write well? How well can most of us actually spell?

Should we expect the next generations to be stupider than we are? Are we getting stupider every day? If language is the way we learn things, isn't "technology" putting an end to learning by apparently killing language?

I think that if using the instruments of the century is indeed mandatory, it should not be at an early age. I find that language is dying really quickly, and, along with it, much of our identity. 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Broken

My compositional apparatus isn't working anymore, it seems. Either that or I'm not able to operate it as I used to. (These past two sentences prove that. Somehow.) I'm a bit busy these days: studying, going to school, sleeping... etc. I don't even have enough time for reading, let alone writing. I have nothing to write about, in any case. (Just history, human rights, linguistics, humor, and other trivial matters.)

I don't know why I've made this post, but I'm glad I did. OK, I'm not glad.
By the way, although I haven't blogged for a while, there seem to be people who view/read my blog every day. Who are you guys? Thank you!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Review: 1984


1984
1984 by George Orwell

My rating: 3 of 5 stars



Only today, when I'd almost finished it, I realized that for the past week, I've been really grumpy only because of this book. I don't know why it made me so angry; I wasn't even conscious of it, but I even couldn't fall asleep easily for a few days. It might have reminded me of our reality, to an extent.

At first, I enjoyed it: the way in which the dictatorship is described, how the people act, and how a smart person has to reject it. The explanation of the reasons and motives for creating the dictatorship was also interesting. What I could not bring myself to accept is how some characters are convinced that immorality and corruption serve to undermine a tyrannical entity. These entities, in my opinion, thrive (and are actually built upon) corruption.


I would give it four stars, really, if it weren't for the negative emotions it stirred in me.



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Thursday, September 4, 2014

Review: The Hobbit


The Hobbit
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

My rating: 3 of 5 stars



All I can say about this book is that it's a children's tale written in "adult" language. That is to say that, literarily, it's an exceptional work; but the story wasn't of much interest to me.



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Review: Pride and Prejudice


Pride and Prejudice
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



I'm afraid I liked this novel. Though it is a romantic novel, I like how comic it is most of the time.
I liked the psychological aspect of the story, and couldn't help drawing parallels in my life.
I might have found it a somewhat difficult read, though: it took me a long time to read.



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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

A Very Short Story

    Mr. Whatshisname was a "man of principle". He expected punctuality, hard work, and respect of anyone that ever dealt with him. Expecting the same traits of him was a different story: he was the laziest, most unpleasant person within a radius of half the Earth's circumference. He was born a rich man, and a rich man was all he was. Naturally, he thought his status made him special. He was what a hypocrite would call a decent man; what a decent man would call a hypocrite. He looked upon others with disdain; everyone was his inferior. Especially those that were evidently superior to him in some respect.

    His wife, Lydia, completed him; she was nothing but nice, he was everything but. She'd refused to assume his family name--for obvious social and linguistic reasons--and, although he wasn't particularly abusive of her in any way, disapproved of his ways altogether. To say that he didn't abuse his wife is not to say that he didn't abuse others. She felt that by not reprimanding him--not that she dared--she might be actually endorsing his behaviour. Her father, Mr. Doolittle, had entreated her heartily not to marry her now husband, but--as his name suggests--did nothing to actually prevent it. All the men in her life, she felt, were lazy.

    She left him.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Review: A Line in the Sand: Britain, France and the Struggle for the Mastery of the Middle East


A Line in the Sand: Britain, France and the Struggle for the Mastery of the Middle East
A Line in the Sand: Britain, France and the Struggle for the Mastery of the Middle East by James Barr

My rating: 3 of 5 stars



As the author says at the end of the book, it is a tale from which neither country emerges with much credit.

What you can "learn" from this book is that (Western) politicians manipulate, lie,and even kill to serve their own interests. Arabs have always been the victims of Western imperialism and violence, and yet we're the ones that retain the reputation of being terrorists. Of course, I'm talking about Arab peoples, and not administrations.

I have never read or heard of worse terrorists than Israelis. They kill, burn, and destroy; and then - quite stupidly, if you ask me - they pretend to be the victims.

There's a saying about history "repeating itself". It is actually people that keep committing the same mistakes over and over again.



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Saturday, May 31, 2014

Violence

Excuse my last post. I'm not well-versed in poetry (get it?). I'm much better at prose, which might sound a bit prosaic at times (get this one?). I like to believe in the power of words, and, as a fierce opponent of violence, I insist that spoken (or written) word is the best way to achieve results.

Violent people are weak. They can't control themselves, and they end up hurting people because it's the easiest thing to do. Strong people are those who can control themselves when in a fit of rage.

I truly believe that violence is for cowards. Cowards can't accept other people's views. They can't even accept others' existence. When someone opposes them verbally, they feel threatened, and they attack (either verbally or physically) without hesitation to "protect" themselves. They feel threatened because they have the illusion of power and control, and feel that any instance of criticism is an "effort to undermine" them. They are truly unfortunate.

Violence is for the stupid. If you believe that imposing your "beliefs" upon others forcibly does anything to serve you(r cause), you are abysmally mistaken. People might fear you. They might obey you. But once people wake up and realize what an absolute nothing you are, you are back to nothing. Only those who can't talk resort to violence, after all.

I'm strong; I'm brave; I'm smart; I'm peaceful.
(I think I might be a bit arrogant, too!)


Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Sad!

When I'm surrounded by people I feel all alone.
When I'm most liked I feel most forlorn.
I can turn any emotion into sadness.
"Why would anyone like me? Must be madness!"

Smiles make me want to cry; laughs make me want to groan.
It seems as though gloom is all I've known.
They say sadness improves your memory, but I feel it's the other way for me:
My memories are sad; and so they strengthen my sadness.

I am happy; I like my life; I love my family; I love my home.
I just don't like the monster that I've become.
I only see negativity, focus on the downside,
And see everyone else as mindless clones.

Why is it that you're a human when you're born;
But turn into a monster once you've grown?

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Speechful!

 
"To stop the bloodshed - and prevent all harmful consequences of uprisings in the Arab world - give people their rights."
Nobody. EVER!


 It is the obvious solution. To the poverty, the deprivation, everything. No one really cares! No one wants it to stop. And those who do, make things complicated in an indirect way. You demand freedom (among many other rights), and what you get is even more oppression; even carnage. I can't seem to see why some people like to blame the "resistance" or the "revolutionaries" for all that's been happening. If we'd been given our rights in the first place, no one would have had to ask for them -- neither peacefully nor violently.

Life in the Arab world has become unbearable. We've been leading a kind of deprived life for a very long time now, and it only seems to be going downhill. In countries that haven't experienced significant amounts of violence (like the one from which I come and am), governments only seem to try to make matters worse: new legislations are passed to restrict our freedoms even more. Such actions are taken to ensure permanence of the system, and only serve to undermine it. Yes, the system is bringing about its own demise.

I know these are only the rants of a helpless kid, but the solution is right there, (clichédly) staring us in the eyes:

GIVE US OUR RIGHTS!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Review: The Fault in Our Stars


The Fault in Our Stars
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

My rating: 2 of 5 stars



Um... It's, like, I didn't really like this book and whatever.

I mean, seriously? Is it OK to write a book using this language. I really don't know what to say about it. It's not exactly boring, but I can't fathom why it's so well-known and liked.
I didn't get AIA's ending, nor did I get TFIOS's.



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Saturday, March 15, 2014

Berth Day

One day ago, I had what most people refer to as a "birthday". Now, I will not dwell on why it sounds wrong to call it that in the first place (i.e. you're only born once), but I can't help despising the idea of celebrating it. Each one of those days that passes by is like one line on a graduated cylinder that's being drained of its contents. I really don't mean to be derisive; I'm not judging anyone.

Now, even though I'm not judging anyone, I, myself, do not want to celebrate the anniversary of the day I was born. I expect everyone to accept that! People think it's because I'm shy; it's not, and I'm not. I don't come up to people and say stuff like "Hey, don't accept felicitations today." Likewise, I expect that no one demand that I do.

I know I sound crazy, but I'm a bit angry. My brother posted birthday wishes on my wall on Facebook, and it was followed by a stream of happy posts. I appreciate the positive atmosphere, and I like to know that many people don't hate me, but I felt my rules--my stupid, silly rules--were broken. I don't like that.

I like to spend the anniversary of my birth like any other day. Uneventfully, and comfortably. Preferably in or near my bed.

Writer's Blog

I can't seem to write anymore. It's like back in school when we'd be asked to write about a specific topic, in a specific style, during a specified period of time. It didn't work then, and it certainly isn't working now.

I used to write really badly back then; but it wasn't because I was bad at it, but because I didn't want to do it. It wasn't until I finished high school and went to university--more specifically, when I was first exposed to the internet and social media--that I started doing this right. Now, by right I don't mean in the proper--or even the correct--way; I mean freely. In the past few months, however, I haven't been able to write anything. It might be the lack of time or energy, but I have a feeling that there's something within me preventing me from releasing my emotions in written form.

It doesn't make sense, though. When a writer feels good or bad, he or she writes about feeling good or bad. Shouldn't a writer, when unable to write, be able--nay need--to write about not being able to write?

Am I out of topics? No. Am I out of humour? Absolutely not! 
I need to write, and I don't think I know how anymore.

What is wrong with me?

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Blog Entry

I haven't blogged in while, and I don't know why. Maybe I've been busy. But I do know that my writing skills are deteriorating because of that. My emotional state today demands that I write. (Which is another way of saying "I feel like writing!")

In October, I moved to another city to save myself some time to study. I didn't like it. Still don't. Not a week had passed when we got burgled; I lost my laptop (that I'd bought only two months earlier) and my iPod touch (which my uncle gave me). My diet is now mostly junk food, which made me fatter. And the whole thing is not cost-effective at all.

I hate to complain, but here I'm doing it. My most important complaint is that I'm losing my touch; I can't seem to write well anymore!

I apologize deeply.