Saturday 27 August 2016

#163 Two things

There are two things that I must do every night before I go to sleep. The first is to message some people online, to connect with them. The second is to write in my diary, to connect with myself.

If I haven't done these two things at the end of the evening, I'll stay awake until I've done them and won't get enough sleep.

I write down messages to other people and thoughts to myself during the daytime. I practically need to do it at the end of the day too.

Our need for connection is universal. If an infant is deprived of human contact for lng enough, its health will deteriorate and it may eventually die, even if it's fed and watered. We might say, it needs to be loved.

Can an organisation love? Can a computer? I like to think it's possible. Yet there's something about the care that passes from human to human that's as yet irreducible. Undetectable.

Maybe it's because we're so alike. When we're cared for by each other, we're reinforced by ourselves.

There are two things I must do every night before I sleep. It's because I'm alive. Life reinforces itself.

Thursday 18 August 2016

#162 Long tails and loud wails

I'd always thought that mice were those funsized things that scurried about, picking up crumbs, whereas rats were much larger, ghastly creatures that bit people and spread the plague. It turns out, at least technically, that the line is much more blurred. In fact I'm not even sure there is one. According to Wikipedia, there's no scientific distinction between the two.

I am happy to let the scientists use my distinction, while they figure out their own. The cute little fellow that I saw poking his whiskers out of the gap beside the kitchen plug sockets this week looked awfully mousey to me.

Upon first discovering the creature earlier in the week, my housemate's rather frolicsome male friend immediately dropped any ounce of composure that he possessed and let out a shriek of a nature such that my first thought was that he had spotted a burglar. Having little in the house of much material value, I scarcely looked up from my book.

He had been at the flour, the mouse, not my flatmate's friend and had trodden a white path around the worktop and up onto the corner of the microwave. There was no food up there and I can't imagine what fascination a rodent should have with radiative cooking. Perhaps he was simply exploring.

We're taking steps to keep them out. Taping over holes. Sealing up the food, that sort of thing, so I'm not sure when I'll see the mouse next. Still, it was nice to have a friend in the house for a while.

Tuesday 9 August 2016

#161 Data processing

"Sorry to bother you" said a guy wearing a pink tshirt as I walked into the canteen yesterday. He didn't seem sorry enough. "Have you heard of Yo Yo Pay? The app that lets you leave your wallet at home?" He asked. I shrugged in a way that hopefully emphasised how little I cared. Sometimes less is more.

Unfortunately the meme had found its way onto the cashiers' chests too and into their mouths. They're usually so authentic and pleasant. I'm currently searching for a cure for succeptibility to marketing. If I find one, I'll share details here in the blog.

Fortunately, the Yo Yo Pay sales pitch wasn't the only information that the world decided to share with me recently. At Kev's wedding, I received some free advice from Cookie and Sarah on dealing with uncertainty during the first few dates with someone new. I'm not sure if it'll pay off but it can't be any less helpful than their advice on dancing.

Handling the various pieces of information that are thrown at us every day can be difficult sometimes but it can also be one of the joys of modern life. Discovering something new. Sharing an amusing anecdote with a friend.

It increasingly feels like we're given more and more information and less and less time to process it. I especially noticed this after recently turning thirty two.

As a child, I often used to sit idly when travelling on a train or bus. As my hair gets thinner and my belly gets thicker, I'm more inclined to want to spend that time writing a blog post, or a note of things to do. Processing information, to make the time count, even in a small way.