The Good Teacher type, Verbalizations & The Power to Act : Chronicle 27

Ahhh when some human being, an artist, an actor, whoever, says : “I wouldn’t be there without…”. A teacher, who SAW the possibilities hidden in a toady lazy kid. Thanks to a word. An advice. A book. This person gave the impulse.

This makes me thoughtful. How to keep the awareness to be there and say the right thing to a person who desperately needs it? What is the impulse and how do you find it? What do you trigger here?

It’s rarely in actions, I’m pretty sure. It’s in words. The teacher verbalizes what he/she foresees. Or not. Foreseeing but unsaying what he/she guesses. Impulsing in the forms of seeds. But with words, right?

Words as levers. I like that!

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Spoiler to Sophie’s Choice here : don’t read this if you want to read the book one day.

Sophie is a Polish immigrant who comes to the USA just after the war. When she arrived to Auschwitz a few years before, she’s been forced to choose between her two kids : one will be gassed, the other sent to a children camp.

Of course, the idea of the choice is unimaginably terrible, but the scene, in the book, is worse : the nazi who decides to let her “choose” appears just after his lunch. He’s a bit drunk and has… “a sprinkling of boiled-rice grains on the lapel of the SS tunic”.

There’s something like a horrific one more layer here. Why is it worse to be mistreated by someone who doesn’t care that much? Why are we wounded by a lack of empathy? What kind of tropism is to mistreat someone… casually?

One day, in Paris, I was with a person who was absolutely happy to see me suffer after a break up. She became silent, never explained anything, silence treatmenting me, exhilarated to create confusion in my head, hilarious on the phone describing my despair. I was paralyzed, glued in something… I think it’s been the only time in my life I’ve witnessed this dark joy.

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Bloggers have maybe realized that they have to write & share about what they know/found. Words again. If you read me here, you know I’m obsessed with them…

What kind of place is a blog? Who listens?

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It’s been all fascinating to discover these two different American women the same week. Both of them let me in an awe. I never heard their name before. And, oh, it’s the first and last time I talk about politics here…

I discovered Ann Coulter recently, randomly, on Twitter, and I now follow her, fascinated like by a spider – to see how far she can go. “Hate-Monger”, they call her. Or “bilious”. And in fact, I never thought a person like that could exist.

The democratic political game is normal and I understand a country needs to have some Democrats moments and then some Republican moments. But Ann Coulter is something I can’t understand. I read some of her tweets or retweets, wondering how could someone be so attention seeking, ignorant, full of hate, fiddlesticky and, oh… there are some YouTube movies you can watch, just type her name and “supremely” or “complete”.

I see the spider, obsessed by religion and purity, wanting to “clean” her country from the 11 millions illegal Mexican immigrants (oh really, how would you do that, Ann?) and daily asking for “The Wall” on the border (40% of illegals come by plane with a visa and stay). Outrageous to sell books, right? I watched her first movie on Facebook like “How is this possible?”. She is almost… barking.

Not so long ago she tweeted that “Sharks are doing the jobs Europeans just don’t wanna do” after this incident in the sea “Migrants are eaten by SHARKS during rescue operation in the Mediterranean after their boats sank, claiming 31 lives” ( http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5120909/Migrants-eaten-SHARKS-rescue-operation.html ).

The only dial I could watch here is this : to ask GOP lovers what they think about this woman. But I know none. I wonder if, for people who preferred Bush to Obama, from where it is becoming “too much”…

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Happily I watched a good documentary about Katharine Hepburn, and heard about Deborah Nadoolman Landis (on the left on the picture), a film and theater costume designer I never heard about before. She’s now also and historian and a professor at UCLA. She designed costumes for Michael Jackson in Thriller, the Blues Brothers, and… Indiana Jones. Yep, she wrote books too!

I loved her smile, her finesse, her genuine sparkling happiness to talk about Katharine Hepburn. I read things about her on Twitter too. All about her grace, her enthusiasm and generosity in teaching.

Deboray at IMDB : http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0618966/

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Facets of America…

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Fidget spinners have been fascinating to watch : it was over as soon as it began. So when kids needed them it was constantly out of stock, and as soon as stores were full of spinners, they had to cut prices : NOBODY wanted to buy such shitty things for that much money.

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There are a few motifs, patterns, I like to call “tools”. It is one of the reasons why my articles are to brief. It’s not about theories, but about little structures.

A single wisdom underlies, though, any idea of “What do I do?”, thanks to Marcus Aurelius, who says that we can divide the world in two camps :

Where we have a power to act, and where we have not.

Then, worry about the first territory only.

In a way, we can consider the second camp (“I know it’s here, and what it’s doing, and I can do nothing about it”) like the WEATHER. The whole society, or war, or idiots around us : there’s little we can do about it. If I want to act, I watch the levers I have within reach, and move thy ass, gallivanter!

Choose your field : job, couple, creativity… It’s just a little analysis game.

 

There are some states, in life, where your camp, your levers, all is just INSIDE you. You are powerless on anything you have around (for example if you’re a lonely prisoner in a cage). Then, all you can do is to work inside yourself…

 

Then…

Signals. At intervals. Intermittently. Hoping they’ll be seen. You need a mate to talk about things, right?

 

Thanks for reading! Bonne journée !

 

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Thanks, Beth, for the picture!

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Uncontrol the Controllable – The Chardonnay Effect

“Control the controllable”, I read one day on a blog (about how to avoid stress, I think). This sounded like a generalization of Marcus Aurelius‘s quote :

“You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.”

…and I liked it. Control the controllable (which is your mind). Power and concision of English language!

Seneca says something like :

“We suffer more often in imagination than in reality”

…which is complementary, right? What is uncontrollable, now, though?

MMmhhhh. Epictetus can help us here :

“Make the best use of what is in your power, and take the rest as it happens.”

(I bolded the bold). It seems that philosophers from Antiquity had some thinkings about life, right? “As it happens” (Amor fati, etc).

Love what happens…

My article is about : what if, for a moment,  I do not want to control what I could control. Uncontrol the controllable. “Make the best use of what is in your power” can then become for me… to smile and listen to propositions of life.

I call it the Chardonnay effect.

Chardonnay is a French white wine. It seems to have a strange effect : I forget “rules and regulations”, I have less desires to control what I can control. I open some doors and paths, just to see. Don’t drink too much, though!

Thanks to some French Magic, I seem to be more able to enjoy the moment, extend possibilities, be in place, and realize that life is too short to CONTROL EVERYTHING.

Well, Chardonnay (and okey, other wines too, probably, LOL) have the capacity to make me decide to let go, to dance. With the ability – I hope – to recontrol if necessary, right?

Royksöpp, in this song, says the dangers of uncontrolling this way, though :

I still don’t know just what I’ve done
I don’t remember anymore what I used to be

OK, but what side doesn’t remember the other one? Is there a danger to begin to love the uncontrol? Is there a conflict between guts and reason? What kind of dance is it, then, between Face A and B, forest and trees, pleasure and rules, opening doors and lukewarm but necessary important security behind closed ones? Jekyll and Hyde? What kind of door is it, between the two?

Don’t drink, stay in control. Voilà.

Cheers! A la bonne vôtre !

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“Amor Fati” is a Love of Fate #Tango ! #SequereDeum

Let me embrace thee, sour adversity, for wise men say it is the wisest course.

William Shakespeare

Amor Fati what?? Wait wait wait, don’t worry. Latin in involved, but it’s easy and useful.

Let’s translate : amor fati says “love of fate”.

Wikipedia “Amor Fati” : It is used to describe an attitude in which one sees everything that happens in one’s life, including suffering and loss, as good or, at the very least, necessary, in that they are among the facts of one’s life and existence, so they are always necessarily there whether one likes them or not.

And in fact, you’ll find all kinds of “shades” about “accepting reality”, in literature, in reality, in books :

If you’re an amputee after an accident, you can go from terrible distress to grey resignation to “what do I do, now”, to… you know where I’m going, right ? Aren’t we all fascinated by people who blossom AFTER a terrible event?

It’s just an example, but you got me : Amor Fati contains Amor : “one sees everything that happens in one’s life, including suffering and loss, as good or, at the very least, necessary“. Of course, it’s not “necessary”, but, as says Shakespeare, you can embrace it, though.

Seeing life as a Tango, a continuous creative almost oriental dance, is just a thing that we can consider. It is certainly not resignation, but the love of what is given to us. Even if it’s hard. Use this tool with a combination of Propensity, and… you’ll see!

Accept the things to which fate binds you, and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart

Marcus Aurelius

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amor_fati

Thanks for reading!

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<< Confine yourself to the present >>

Marcus Aurelius

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Art of Inventing Problems

To invent problems, if you’re a manager in a company, you just have to set rules. Many of them.

There’s always a moment when everybody will forget that a “problem” is not a problem per se, but it’s a problem “because it does not obey the rules”.

There’s sometimes a person, then, who – probably sarcastically – points out that the “situation” wouldn’t really be a problem if this stupid rule didn’t exist.

Tool : When a problem occurs because someone didn’t obey the rules, you can think into the box and put back this person on tracks, or you can think out of the box and just supress, kill, and destroy the stupid useless rule. Bim.

If you haven’t got this power : sarcasm or stoicism. Choose your weapon.

If you are distressed by anything external, the pain is not due to the thing itself, but to your estimate of it; and this you have the power to revoke at any moment.

Marcus Aurelius

 

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