Constantly Random is an Instagram flaw

Instagram is a great funny app to use and to watch.

I noticed that if you want many followers, you have to be… persistent. If you take pictures of street art, or portraits of homeless people, or pot plants in black and white, dancers in NYC or “I see beauty in dirty ruins”, macro insects or abstract pieces of wood minimalism, you will get many followers.

If, like me, you take “constantly random” pictures and you wander in all kind of “styles”, you’re done. Many people won’t understand what you’re doing, and the few followers you get will quickly unfollow because they dislike you post a happy bee after a blu-ray movie, a wall texture before a black & white dead tree, a HDR sky next to a symmetrical French architecture.

There are some tools, dials and levers to pick, here.

Dial : What kind of spirit are you ? Are you, like a deep-sea diver, exploring a small territory, or are you, like a bee-air forager, smelling and exploring all that you find (from the art of warfare to linguistics, electronic music to Prussia history, American painters to Russian short stories) ?

Lever : Where do you put the lever, from “I show what I love to show” (with the random effect consequences) to “I focus on one thing only” (with the purpose to be more readable and get more audience) ? What is your blog about ? Food ? Or poetry, images, weather, books, music and politics ?

Tool : Play this game : try to find the hidden pattern behind the apparent randomness. Yeah, dear, bend over this caldron and detect it. The forager bee draws interesting patterns in the air.

https://www.instagram.com/jprobocat/

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Sudden Absurdity Syndrome

We all are the same : we need to be busy !

Some of us work so much, though, that they don’t have to think about it. Some of us just watch anything on TV, très bien, très bien. In France they say “Je me vide la tête” (“I empty my head”), which is probably necessary, right ?

But yeah, passion, it happens. You plunge into a universe and you let you got eaten by it.

Some people can collect anything around a pop group (Beatles, Yes, Dylan ?) or a historic event (from la Révolution Française to Alamo or Gettysburg), a composer (Puccinophilia ?). Good and interesting way to keep you busy !

To build a “things” collection is also a perfect activity. You explore, you read, you collect, you compare, you write in forums,  you watch your collection : coins or stamps, forks/knives/spoons (pick one), old magazines about cactus or guns. Even wine corks collecting works !

I used to collect stamps when I was a kid. It was merely a social thing : some kids around me were doing the same : sharing was cool ! The stamps… well…

One day, I watched my stamps, in three big albums. And in one second, plop, all of it became absurd – I realised what I was doing : collecting colored paper rectangles with teeth shapes on the border, normally used to send letters. Not much.

Every human activity, you’re right, can be reducted to absurdity : just watch what it is in reality. After all, soccer is made of two dozens men in shorts running on grass after a balloon…

Tool/Dial :

Pray to be spared by the feeling of realising what you’re doing. If you manage to keep it out of your brain, you’re safe. You’ll be comforted by people on elegant forums who do the same. Combinations, there, are very cool : “Chairs and Coffee”, or “Knives and Daisies”, whatever. It seems cool, no ? Good !

Beware, because if you really watch the eye of people you meet, you will probably see the absurdity sparkling in it. People are polite, but they laugh inside, and this sarcastic invisible light could really contaminate you :

“Oh you collect spoooons, that’s sooooo greaaaat !” (hahaha – or wine corks, show me all of them).

(of course, this happens because these people don’t really understand WHY collecting this shit is interesting for you : stamps are beautifully engraved, etc). A knife, to cut things. WTF.

The Sudden Absurdity Syndrome is when the bubble explodes. You realise where you are, on this planet, collecting “screwdrivers and lemon juice”; you like to take and share pictures of this, and, even if the screwdrivers are perfectly crafted in Titanium 2.0, it plopped in your head (“WTF am I doing ?”) and you’re done. You’re done. You’re megadone.

The same blindness is in everyone of us for other things, love, job, sports. I watched, a few years ago, a kitesurfing guy, at the beach. He was good ! But later I saw him sitting on the sand, like stunned. He was probably just tired of jumping in the air over the sea like that, but I imagined the Sudden Absurdity Syndrome. “WTF am I doing ?”, etc…

Our Sysiphian condition is infinite.

For myself…

After all, what am I doing here ? Collecting shelves of books I won’t (for the most part) read, and here, blogging ideas as “tools”, in dozens of articles nobody read…

#aftertherain #city #chairs #france #bwstyleoftheday #bw

 

Labels on Humans’ Multiplicity

When we meet someone, our brain try to find out “who” is this person. It’s maybe your new hairdresser, a new doctor you have to see, your future lover or a new colleague : you meet this human being and you immediatly begin to watch and analyse his or her personality.

Then, like a puzzle, you collect “words on stickers” you put on this person. Slow, shy, funny, anxious or whatever. Just take the sitcom Friends : Don’t you have words to stick to Monica, Joey or Phoebe ? See ?

This is OK and this is the way we all do. Monica is perfectionnist, competitive and obsessive-compulsive, Joey is… ahh you know all that, right ?

What stickers do you put on your… friends ? People have many facets. You discover them one by one… Flaws and Qualities, we are all a mess and a multiplicity. There’s a whole family in here ! Therefore, there’s an interesting set of dials to watch here. And some questions :

  • Can we be wrong when we put some stickers on someone ?
  • What happens when you watch someone drunk ? Or in danger ? Are the stickers useful then ? Are you able to remove them to find back your friend ?
  • What do you do when you realize someone’s in disguise ? Wears masks ?
  • Can someone hide some of dark personality traits ?
  • Surprises ? What if the stickers you chose for a person were wrong ?…
  • What about the stickers you “think” people put on you ?

About our dark sides, you can just click on this wiki : Shadow .

Dial : We all have good and bad personality traits. We have to fight our flaws, constantly, we make mistakes, we do what we can. You have to think about this when you put stickers on people you communicate with. Stickers are OK and funny to analyse a personality, but then, there’s a moment when you have to remove them and embrace contradictions and the complexity of us all… We are not made of words, but human beings…

You also have to watch closely people who list stickers on themselves. Maybe they’re right, maybe they hide something, maybe they… do what they can, too ! If your friend, one day, acts silly, it’s maybe the day to say : “Hey silly, what did you do ? Come here, I know you, and you’re not like that…”.

 

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Fun of Classifying Personalities

#lilith #movie #blackandwhite
#lilith #movie #blackandwhite

Think how funny it is to find yourself in a classification. En Astrologie, you have 12 boxes. Each sign has characteristics. If you’re a Pisces you are a dreamer, Gemini is fast, Cancer sensible, Taurus slow, etc. You can spend your whole life studying that, or just be funny casual about it, or lazy too : this is a good way to accept your own faults and flaws, no ?

There are many other tools in psychology, helping us to understand who we are, Enneagrams or MBTI, for example. Maybe you’re a leader, or a diplomat, an introvert, an observer, etc. It can be a good way to know yourself, some people around you, a group you’re managing, etc.

One day, you meet another classification, and you’re ready to have fun to put people in boxes ! I just realised that the “mental disorders classification” can be one.

And I would say : OMG ! In French : Oh la laaaa !

Do you have Dependent Personality Disorder Symptoms ?

“Dependent personality disorder is characterized by a long-standing need for the person to be taken care of and a fear of being abandoned or separated from important individuals in his or her life.”

Do you have Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Symptoms ?

Are you obsessed by order, rules ? Do you have superstitions about signs and numbers ? Do you fear to lose control ? Focus on moral ideas and rules ? Do you organize to the level of perfectionism ? Do you obsessively dissect your relationships with friends ?

See me coming ? You see ? Of couuuurse you’re not that a sicko-weirdo ! But, well, maybe a little, non ?

Dials : Have fun in classifications. Find your dials. Watch yourself and grow and evolve… or smile and be lazy with “I’m like that, that’s me !”.

Tool : All these classifications are useful because they invite you to have empathy. We all do what we can, after all. On fait tous ce qu’on peut…

Illusions and Tricks of “Meta” the buoy

I love meta, I’ve always loved meta. It’s a great tool and I should write many articles to tell the richness of it.

What is meta ? See Wikipedia ! In two seconds : it’s a Greek preposition. I use it here in the strong meaning of “self-reference”. For example, metadata are data about data and a meta-discussion is a discussion about discussions !

It can be an astute trick in Arts. If you don’t have an idea, think meta. When Fellini didn’t have any idea for his next movie, he made one about a… director without any idea at all (it’s “8 1/2” of course).

8 1/2 Trailer

Everything meta is fascinating. A book about books, a film about a film, etc.

Meta can be a buoy, a trick when you lack of something, like in Fellini’s example. I told my daughter one day that, if she had no idea in Art Class, she can “think meta”. It spices things. Draw someone who draws, that’s good ! Astute, that’s all.

But Meta can be toxic at times. I think it can be toxic in love, for example. At one point, you both are not talking easily about life, days, projects or funny things, you just begin to talk about the couple and how it works (or should work). And then you begin to spin !

This spinning begins when you communicate everyday about… how you communicate, how you are together, how everything “should be”. Every couple needs to meta-communicate of course, but not that much. Not constantly.

Meta is useful, but it’s also a trap. Or a symptom.

Tool : Think about meta when you’re lost in creativity. It’s a simple trick. It doesn’t work all the time. But It can unblock you.

Dial : If – in interpersonal communication – you feel that you’re spinning around meta (talking about the system works, talking about how the communication works or should work), move a flag : there’s danger here. Boredom and toxic goals appear. And tragic paradoxes on the “being spontaneous” mode

Lever : Some days, just being aware of meta toxicity is cool – shut it down :

Live, instead of putting words on your life…

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What does Manon Lescaut want?

Manon Lescaut is an Italian opera composed by G. Puccini in the 1890s, from a French novel named “L’Histoire du chevalier des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut“.

Act 1 : Des Grieux is a melancholic student, outside, with friends, in France. A coach arrives, bringing Manon, a young woman on her way to convent (forced by her father), and Géronte, an old man who wants to abduct Manon and live with her in Paris. Des Grieux understands what’s happening, falls in love, and Manon and him escape in Géronte’s coach. Voilà !

Act 2 : Curiously, Manon has already left des Grieux and is living a relatively luxurious life with the old Géronte. Etc… Yes, etc !

There’s a huge, gap, an ellipsis, between Act 1 and 2 : what happened to the young couple ? Why did Manon choose Géronte, quitting her young lover ? Money ? Bore ? Stupidity ?

Pappano on Manon’s Music

As a Puccini lover, I watched many versions of this opera. And I found out something, a question appeared :

What does Manon Lescaut want?

So I began to explore books and the web to find out. Kiri Te Kanawa (with a marvellous Placido Domingo as Des Grieux) is a splendid, crystal innocent Manon. She floats onto what life brings to her, like a little cork on the sea. Elsewhere, Astrid Weber plays an upstart woman, mocking secretly and using Des Grieux as a purpose to escape her fate.

These are two very interesting ways to interpret the character. Because you will fill the blank (ellipsis) in VERY different ways !

From this to that, I saw many ways to put Manon to life. Is she a punk ? A feminist ? An idiot ? Does she choose anything ? What do you think ?

Manon and Des Grieux in Act II

Manon is a blurry character. We often don’t understand her. Her behavior is complex, living, changing all the time : she is a weathercock !

In Act I, she’s a sad, frightened country girl sent off to a convent. In Act II, she’s the consort of a wealthy old man, sarcastic and bored. This activity doesn’t address Act III, where she’s in prison for allegedly stealing from that old man, but Act IV finds her experiencing the consequences: wandering helpless, full of regrets, in a vast American desert.

Yes that’s sad ! Yes She’ll die ! Who was Manon Lescaut ?

Libretto in english

 

Tool : Ah c’est tellement passionnant when you don’t have all the keys. When a single glance can change all the story ! Who’s evil ? You don’t know. What if in your work you didn’t give “all the keys” to the audience ? Chop one or two, just to see…

Tool : One of the pleasure of Classical Music is to compare versions. You can have days and days of pleasure.

Dial : Another article is needed : “In Love with a Project”. Soon.

 

 

 

“Without Music Life would be a Mistake” ? Nope…

“Without Music Life would be a Mistake”

You can find this quote from Nietzsche on all kinds of tee-shirts.

In fact, you can replace “Music” with some other pleasant words, like “Wine”, or “Love”, or “Philosophy”, “Fashion”, who cares ? Is it an order, some kind of pressure ?

Of course, without music life would not be a mistake AT ALL.

The Persuaders

If you suddenly take seriously how music is important to people, you’ll be SO surprised that you will be floored. I use this “floored” expression because I’m french and I LOVE it. Floored, you on the floor, voilà pour vous.

I asked about the opera, one day. One loves opera because of the magic of the place. Some because of the archetypal terrible stories. For some others, it’s the performance of the singers (ahhhh the “high notes” !). Some guys are in love with one voice only (Callas !). Some guys love only one composer (Wagner, or for me : Puccini). Many love opera and only opera. You can find fools who love to collect all versions of the same thing. Etc.

Elephant Woman

You should and you have to think about it when you want to SHARE a music. You give YouTube links to your lover and most all the time you’ll be surprised. She doesn’t care. What moves you does nothing to the others.

Personaly I love risky modulations (I love Mike Oldfield, John Barry, Progressive Rock and Royksopp, and Puccini, and Prokofiev for this reason). I love to analyse production (Floors of sound in Depeche Mode Violator, different veils in Brian Eno’s work). I love crescendos. I love when the magic is hidden in a mist (Royksopp, Blonde Redhead). I love David Sylvian’s voice. OK I stop here. What about YOU ?

Brilliant Trees

Some like an era (the sixties !), a style (new wave !), an energy (dance !), an attitude (punk !), a flow (rap !), productors (Trevor Horn ?), a sound, a label (4AD), a social field (gothic culture), a movement (house), a nostalgy (“I listened to The Police when she kissed me !”), the singer (Arctic Monkeys oh he’s so cute)…

Tools :

Oh, just this : It’s always more complicated.

Do not think that you have a human typology in mind. You’re wrong.

(and fuck Nietzsche on this quote)

https://youtu.be/cFig-OiIwDo

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