Friday, November 6, 2015

Counting Views, Paris, Colors, and Soil

1. Realized something horrible related to the whole Essana O'Neil issue.

Every day I make it a point to look at some of my old Flickr pictures. I've been telling myself it's so I can look at the past and make photo-taking not a waste. I mean what's the point of recording your life if you're not going to look back at it?

Anyway, today I realized that when I look at the photos, I hardly even pay attention to the photos. What I'm really looking at is how many views they've received.

I thought putting photos up on Flickr was not the same as Instagram, but maybe it's not so different, after all. Or at least, for me, it's not so different.

2. Disappointed in myself.

3. Don't know if I could stop myself from caring about the number of views, so I won't work too hard to change that. But I will make more of an effort to actually LOOK at the photos and reminisce.

4. Had all kind of thoughts running through my head, starting with the fact that I pay attention to what posts of mine are more popular. I look at the views they receive. I'm very interested in this.

Then I told myself, it's fine, because although I'm interested in the number of views, I don't let it influence me.

That's not true, though. Or at least I'm tempted to be influenced.

I can also see what exit-links are more popular on my blog. Recently, I've come to notice that no one is clicking on my links to palg1305's photos. I considered not looking at, and linking to his, photos anymore.

SO I am influenced...or at least almost-influenced.

But then I thought maybe we SHOULD care, a little bit, about if what we're doing is interesting to people. We shouldn't care too much, but maybe it's also a problem if we care too little.

We could end up becoming one of those people who blab on and on about themselves, and they don't even notice the people around them are bored or not listening.

I follow a person on Twitter that posts several Tweets a day about her life. She rarely (close to never) gets any responses. It seems to me she doesn't care. But if she did care, maybe she'd stop to think.  Hey, maybe people don't care that much about the details of my day.

5. Thought: Who am I to talk?

It's not like my blog is popular, and I still blab on and on.

6. Imagined a scale. On one end, is people who don't give a crap what other people think of them. This may sound brave and good, but I'm thinking of it more in negative terms. Imagine someone who's rude, lacking in personal hygiene, and is very self-centered. They don't care what other people think about them, because they don't care about other people. They only care about themselves.

On the other side of the scale, is someone who cares way too much about being popular. They make choices always based on what's going to make them the most liked. They go as far as lying to get the attention they crave.

With this scale, I think as long as we're somewhere close to the middle, we're probably okay.

7.  Felt I'm in the group that worries too much about what people think of them—to the point of being somewhat neurotic. Then I go ahead and do what I want, anyway. Usually.

8. Started working on our US history curriculum today and learned that the US's first election occurred a few weeks before the First Fleet arrived in Australia.

9. Started watching The Cars That Ate Paris.

10. Tried to remember what I know about the premise of The Cars That Ate Paris.

I managed to remember it was about a town that purposely causes car accidents and then makes money off of the parts of the car.

I went to IMDb, and they confirmed I'm right.

11. Saw green home-furnishing items in the movie. It screams 1970's to me, and I actually love it. I'm wondering if green was a popular color in the 1970's.

12. Found a website about color in the 1970's, and it turns out I'm not imagining things.

They say Avocado Green and Harvest Gold were the main colors of the 1970's. This was especially the case with appliances.

13. Looked at various websites about colors in the different decades.

This one has a lot of interesting stuff.  They say in the 2000's, stainless steel and metallic hues were popular.

In the 1920's, women wore a lot of turquoise and aqua-blue eye make-up. I saw a lot of that in Underbelly: Razor. The website also says that white kitchens were popular back then, because they symbolized a clean, disease-free environment.

14. Thought that the main actor in The Cars That Ate Paris looks a little bit like Peter Barlow on Coronation Street. I think it's his eyes and lips.

15. Finished watching the movie.

I was a bit confused about the climax—probably because I played QuizUp while watching. Or maybe I'd be confused anyway. It happens sometimes.

I thought the movie was okay. I think I liked the set design stuff better than the actual happenings.

16. Consulted Lord Wiki about The Cars that Ate Paris.

17. Saw that the movie was released when director Peter Weir was thirty.

18. Realized that, while watching the movie, I confused Peter Weir with Baz Luhrmann.

19. Calculated that Luhrmann would have been only twelve when The Cars that Ate Paris was released.

20. Learned that the movie was filmed in Sofala, New South Wales. The movie Sirens was filmed there as well.

21. Saw from Google Maps that Sofala is about three hours north-west of Sydney.

22. Got an explanation of the movie's climax from Lord Wiki.  It's pretty much what I imagined happened. I just wasn't sure of the details.

That being said, I might have missed some stuff by playing QuizUp. Well, I know I missed stuff. What I don't know if my multi-tasking is the cause or the fact that some of the audio was difficult for me to hear.  It got a bit quiet at times.

The thing I missed is that Arthur (Terry Camilleri) didn't drive because of a past incident where he ran over an elderly pedestrian. The experience rocked his confidence.

No, actually I didn't miss that part. I heard it. What I missed is that this is one of the reasons he was stuck in the town. He couldn't get out, because he couldn't drive; and there was no public transportation.

23. Started to think that The Cars that Ate Paris has some similarities between Weir's more recent film The Truman Show.

The mayor in The Cars that Ate Paris reminds me a bit of Christof (Ed Harris).  There's that controlling, god-like aspect and the idea of using dishonesty to keep someone prisoner.  And then Arthur reminds me a bit of Truman (Jim Carrey)—kind of meek but then gaining strength in the end.

24. Went to to pick my next thing to watch.

It's season four of The Secret Life of Us.

I'm kind of excited about that. It will be nice to have all those people back in my life. I've kind of missed them. Maybe.

25. Looked at the cast of the first episode of season four of The Secret Life of Us.

Brooke Harman is in the episode,and also one of the stars of the season. I recognized her name, but wasn't sure who she was. IMDb reminded me that she's from Dance Academy. She played the sort-of wicked teacher Saskia—the one that damaged Tara's (Xenia Goodwin) back.

26. Read article about Woolworths commercial causing offense.

The commercial has a fitness personality, Michelle Bridges, in her garden trying to get nutrition by eating dirt. Then another version of herself appears in a kitchen promoting frozen vegetables. She says, It's time to get real. Eating healthy doesn't mean you have to act like a freak.

First of all, as far as I know, eating dirt is not healthy. The desire to do so is a symptom of an anemia called pica. I don't think you're even supposed to touch dirt. If you do, the general advice is to wash your hands. Soil has various pathogens that cause disease.

The general message of the ad, though, is that growing your own food is something that freaky people do—freaky and stupid people who don't realize you're supposed to eat the plant; not the soil.

I do agree with the people who find it offensive.

It wouldn't be as offensive if it was on a TV show or movie. It would just be the basic stereotyping of people who make different (often healthier) lifestyle choices. Have I ever seen a positive portrayal of a vegetarian on TV or film? I don't think so.  I think we're usually portrayed as hypocritical, self-righteous, flaky, losers.  Even the food itself is presented in a negative light. In the typical scene, someone in the group decides to reduce meat intake—be a little healthier.  They cook a vegetarian food, and it ends up being inedible. The group either pretends to like it or makes snide comments. The chef acts offended but then soon admits that she too is disgusted. Bring on the meat!

27. Thought of a slogan I saw at a store in San Antonio. It said something like Vegetarian: Native American word for Bad Hunter. I thought it was hilarious. I even took a picture of it. But I think it would be much less funny if the slogan was used in a commercial for a steak restaurant.

No. I take that back. It would still be very funny.

I don't get it.

Why are some offensive things hilarious and why are other offensive things just offensive?

I do think the Woolworths commercial is offensive-offensive and not funny-offensive.

Maybe it just seems so desperate. Let's take something that most of us actually admire and try to make it seem like a bad thing so we can sell more of our products.

28. Remembered that I've said some negative things about people growing their own vegetables...I think maybe on this blog.

It's not about vegetable growers being freaks. To me, people who grow their own vegetables represents high-achievers.  It's those annoying people who grow their own vegetables, make their own jam, have hand crafted-furniture, sew their own clothes, etc.  They're shitty people, because they make me feel inferior.

29. Felt a commercial based on my brand of negativity would have worked better.  The basic premise is that not everyone succeeds at gardening, and if they fail to have a full crop, they can supplement with frozen vegetables.

30. Wondered which positive things about me annoy people.

Vegetarianism is one. I think homeschooling is another. Not drinking, probably as well.

Of course, some people would argue that these things are NOT positive. They might truly feel that way and have decent arguments. But I think with other people, there's insecurity about not making the same choices.

I make jokes and have somewhat negative feelings towards people who are very skilled at domestic tasks, not because I think it's a bad thing, but I feel bad that I'm not good at these things too.

31. Wanted to say that I actually AM gardening this year. I have a bunch of plants on our deck.  I'm kind of grossed out about eating them, though, because I found cat poop in the cilantro. I cleaned it out, but still.

Should I not eat the cilantro? Or do we just wash it?  Is rinsing enough to get rid of the poop germs?

Do I just tell myself that the veggies I get at the grocery store might have had poop in them too.

I know there's actually poop in the soil sometimes. Poop helps things grow.

But still. I'm grossed out.

Maybe I won't eat the cilantro, but I'll eat some of the other things instead.

Well, I'm also worried about the radishes.  They look kind of trampled, and I saw bugs. I know bugs on plants are normal. But the first time I saw lots of bugs on any of the plants was with the cilantro incident.

32. Googled cat poop in gardens, and the general idea I'm getting is it's not safe to eat. Probably because of toxoplasmosis.

I mean the plant might not be safe to eat.  I already guessed that the poop wouldn't be a good snack.

33. Thought that I really wanted to grow plants for the fun of it—see if I could actually make something grow. I wasn't overly interested in using the plant stuff as my food.

I'm fine getting my food from the grocery store—frozen or fresh.

It makes me feel guilty, though. Why grow things and then not eat them?

Well, it's not a huge waste.  The plants are small. If we did use them for consumption, each plant would probably last about one or two meals...if we're lucky.

I'm thinking, though, that maybe it's just good to practice growing things—make sure we know how to do it. Then if there's a zombie apocalypse, we can be somewhat self-sufficient.  Although who am I kidding? I'm a VERY slow runner.

34. Remembered that this year I'm mostly growing herbs. The only veggie is the radish plant.  So it's not like we'd be getting meals from my garden.  It would mostly just be some flavoring.

35. Decided not to look at palg1305's Flickr account today.

It's not because there seems to be a lack of interest. I'm not becoming a complete slave to the notion of pleasing other people.

But this post is long enough, and I need to do some chores and take a shower.