vrijdag 2 augustus 2013

Breezing Free Through The Summer News?

Now please, do not get me wrong with the following entry because I had so many reasons not to write this Summer.  One of them was that so many things that I came across in the news had an opposition. What meant that if I would tell openly that in case I would open express my understanding to these events, opinions, people or whatever then I would always hurt someone else's his or her feelings. Chances were also likely that I the next day would find on an other  I would then find on a certain page of the newspaper that what was stated the day before that there even are more reasons to oppose what yesterday still was justified. Well, ladies and gentelmen, that tires me out. In a way I am fed up with it. Why?  Well, because Stallie tries in so many situations to be what 'Twilight' Bella tried to be when she faced Edward and Jakob when they showed openly their teeth: Switzerland.

So writing an entry that is neutral is not easy and especially with the newsitems that I have come across since June.  But today I just decided to let go.  I don't have a clue what the outcome of this entry will be but please be aware that I never have the intention to hurt you or anyone out there. The thing is that since I have seen the first of the episode of the HBO series 'The Newsroom' that I am fully aware that trying to be impartial is so hard, it constanlty splits the mind up, it soakes all the energy out of you. Diplomacy what a great art! But sorry, there must be days that even the army of the impartials consider an off day. We are all human and share the same faith.

For the last 2 monts I have spend in nobody's land and now I want to leave this 'prison without visible bars' because I ran out of energy. I am ready to scream it of the rooftops what I do think of certain things, events, opinions, etc.  So I am going to get out my megaphone and just tell you what I realy goes on in my mind when I meet up with news. Oh wait, that is not my intention but it is quite tempting anyway because there have been a few times while reading the daily news or viewing a newsreport that I just sat there thinking:'Hey, for crying outloud do you want me to say now that I agree with you or do you just wish to find out what I am personaly thinking of all of this?'

Just to give you an idea of what has been going on in my busy mind that is facing a total news melt down.

1. The Snowden Case: Now, do not start me on privacy and freedom of speech (I am afraid that these few words will be mentioned a few times more) and the right to know what our governement is up to. I get this and yes, I do think we are a bit too much checked out lately.  There are moments that I do wish to pull some funny faces at one of the many cameras I come across when I am out there on a personal voyage or little adventure.  Plus there are moments when I spend on Google wondering if the words I type in will be picked up and that I might end up on a certain list. And when I am on the phone with my lovely and very straightforward mother I just try to imagine what rules we are breaking when we mention certain names of people or events.   Do I feel now sorry for the guy or do I consider him a hero who is putting his life on the line. And who who is still stuck in the transit zone of Moscow airport? (Sounds a bit like a certain movie with Tom Hanks, doesn't it?) Well, I don't know the guy personal but his CV will need an update but can he put on there:'White knight on a fierce stallion by breaking the silence for the common good of all.'? I wish him all the luck in the world to find a place where he can feel safe, enjoying in 200% privacy all the worldly pleasures and being able to express his personal opinions without someone looking over his shoulders.  Just don't expect me now to change my profile picture on Facebook by his because that is just one step too far.  My profile picture is 100% me and no photoshop tricks have been used on it either. You can trust me on that one? Okay? (In case you do not have a clue what I am talking about this is a nice one to read through also the comments people make: http://apps.washingtonpost.com/g/page/politics/a-timeline-of-edward-snowdens-life/235/ )

2. Prince becomes King: Oh also had fun with this one. For the people that have never ever heard of Belgium (many out there think we are a part of Germany or of France and we get mocked constantly because believe me where I live it is almost like living in a minefield.  Belgium has got a Royal family and one that does not look or act as some of the other photogenetic and very popular ones that run around in Europe. A few months ago I tried to make sure that I made clear that I am not apposing against any head of state. I just don't like to tell openly what I think of monarchs or presidents or any head of state.  The thing is that others will do it for me.  It was such a joy to read the many opinions, comments on many social networks.  Some of you were even rude and used inappropiate language but at least you were allowed to use your freedom of speech and nobody got killed or physcially harmed by doing this.  Believe me in some nations you would end up in a cold & lonely place if the government or national security forces would catch up your phrase.  No, I am not going to tell you what I think is better a president or monarch for the nation I am living in.  The nicest word that I came across during the whole passing on the throne' is 'surrealism'. After all the location of the Magritte museum in Brussels is just a five minute walk away from the Royal Palace and that I consider the perfect location for many reasons. But it would be nice if now at least someone would dare to tell our 'fresh' queen Mathilde that she just should not wear killer high heels even with the great legs she has got. Sandals, you royal highness, sandals and you will already be so much closer to the commoners. ( Boring link?  But then this is something that is constantly said about our Royals and I am quite sure that for most pictures the Royal family has been given permission!  http://www.hellomagazine.com/royalty/gallery/2013070313336/prince-phillippe-princess-mathilde-family/0/ )

3. The Royal pregnancy and baby: Okay, Summer is always a time in which many things go on vacation and even the news then seems to take a well deserved break. Still,.... I just was a bit bewildered to see many in action when it came down to the press action about a certain mortal soul by the name of Kate who walked around with a certain content.  Twitter and Facebook 'exploded' and yes that some of my friends across the ocean openly expressed that they were excited about this made me produce some facial wrinkles.  That even some journalist were running of juice when they had to camp out in front of the private hospital just made me LOL. The thing is that the aftermatch of all of this was even more interesting. 'Why can't most women go home the day after delivering a bay like Kate?' or  'The Royal duchess has still a long way to go in order to lose that baby fat?'.  And around exactly that time I came across an article about the opinion from one Turkish guy with a certain religious background  (http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/07/26/ready-turkish-islamist-prompts-uproar-with-wild-claims-disgraceful-for-pregnant-women-to-show-their-swinging-bellies-in-public/ )who openly stated that pregnant women are 'ugly' and should go into hiding.  Well, what can I say?  Perhaps just this:let us face it many pregnant women do not have a hairdresser and personaly stylist and trainer living in their closet and when they want to pick up groceries after having gone to the gym in such a state they rather might look like this: http://cache.daylife.com/imageserve/09388yk35n0LQ/300x300.jpg  But does this mean that the content of their tummy and their way of dealing with being pregnant is news worthy? No comment. After all am not Kate Middleton and I am not married to the person who is second in line for the throne of a nation that seems to have a much more emotional attachment with their Royal Family then my surrealistic nation.   I am just happy that Kate Winslet is so human after all and when she is not wearing any make up she looks a bit more like me! But then I am pretty sure that she did not give anyone permission to snap that picture.  Where is Snowden now to make an official statement? (sorry, I am getting carried away....)

4. The Tour de Froome: There was a time that I was glued to the screen and was even counting the seconds that an other cyclists had to make up in order to make up for lost time. Seems light years ago because since a few decades the Tour de France seems more and more to be rather 'one man against the rest of the cyclist-army'.  That the young athlete with Kenyan background was questioned to be clean is no surprise.  But I do think that Froome was able to ride a more 'free' ride through France then last year.  It must have been an amazing feeling for once to just be able to ride that race of a liftime without having to look constantly over your shoulder.  I would have given a million to have travelled along with Froome in his mide.  I just hope that team mate and colleague Wiggins can be sporty spice enough to congratulate his team mate personaly with this memorable win.   I mean, Sir Wiggins, your Royal titlle includes showing great sportmanship at any moment in your carreer.  Oh wait, I am not 100% sure that Royal tittles come along with a manual.  At least the Sir on a bike now admits that he wasn't able to watch his teammate win: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/othersports/article-2380137/Sir-Bradley-Wiggins-I-watch-Tour-France.html  This is a start, isn't? Let us see what it will be next year when they might have to face eachother together for 3 weeks day in day out.  After all isn't the proof of the pudding in the eating or in this case in the riding?

5.  Nigella Lawson her rather violent lunchtime: I have got some of her cookbooks here at home.  I still tend think that it is thanks to her and some of her recipes that I gained some of more confidence in the kitchen.  'How to be a domestic goddess' is the one book that just made me end up with some  goosebumps during baking. And I have scored smiles and many happy dinner guests thanks to her domestic talent she openly shared with millions. But suddenly I came across some pictures of Nigella and her husband that had not that much food involved.  Nigella got more on her plate then just a nice seafood lunch. The domestic goddess faced domestic violence.  Just to give you an idea: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/nigella-lawson-photos-see-shocking-1955564 So, custumors, staff, management and passbyer have seen what happened. But did someone interfer? Nope! Nobody!!! Not a single soul did dare or wish to get into the middle of this row. Why? Privacy? Well, someone did take pictures of this event without asking permission.  The article itself does contain a few interesting ingredients how we react to this kind of events.  And especially that one quote by the spokesperson of the restaurant where this all took place in clear day view:'We do not comment on private matters of custumors.' Oh right, so privacy matters even if this does involve putting both hands around someone else's throat while you are serving lobster and calamari fritti.  Okay? Get the picture. 

6.Jane Austen and JK Rowling: Okay, this is for me such an interesting news bit because it did remind me about something that I came across while doing my research on Jane Austen. Who I do adore. I mean I drive around with a certain sticker on my car that says it all. So yes, I was thrilled to find out that the Bank of England will issue 10 pound Sterling bank notes with her on them.  I have to say that the Euro bank notes are quite boring because we have got only windows and bridges on them.  So yes, Stallie was rather in a joyful state of mind when she found out that news but there are a few mortal souls out there that consider this not such a good idea. If you don't know what I am talking about then just read this: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2380303/Jane-Austen-banknote-campaigner-Caroline-Criado-Perez-receives-Twitter-rape-death-threats.html?ito=feeds-newsxml.
So, a young feminist lady who lobbied to get some women on the bank notes faced dead threats on Twitter. Okay, having to make room for Jane Austen or any other significant women is having to send of some faces for retirement and Charles Darwin and Churchill (who BTW was not such a fan of the right to vote for women!!!!) are not just any faces.   But still, it is not fair on the 'fair ladies' who take any right seriously so also the right to be printed on money to start having less appropiate conversations on social networks? And yes, it were mainly men who just wonder if Caroline should spend some more time in a kitchen!  Welcome to the 21st century ladies and gentlemen! Jane Austen would be having a ball about this one.
Now you will wonder what this has to do with JK Rowling? Well, this succesful author who made us dive back into the world of wizards and secret spells turned out to have already written an other book. We just did not know because the lady had decided that she was going to have it published under a male name. (In case you want to find out what I am talking about:http://www.hypable.com/2013/07/14/how-was-jk-rowling-the-cuckoos-calling-revealed/ )The reviews were not bestseller material till someone on Twitter just decided to reveal who this male author was. And then before I even could breath ten times in and out the sells of the same book hit the roof. Rowling did admit that ever since her identity-swith it had not been such an easy time getting it published and she was even rejected by some houses. I bet some publishers had to drink a glass or two of bourbon to make that news go down. What I thaught was so fascinating was to see what a name can do and that the sex of the author does seem to matter less. What stands out in all of this that women seem still have to 'fight' to fit into a banknote and that the woman who is one of the richest authors of the world her selling figures did not  hit the roof did when she did pretend she was a male author. Jane Austen would wonder if the world has turned up side down.    I think it still amazing to see how much a name and a reputation do matter.

What do I try to point out with these six perhaps not always newsworthy items? Well, just that I do have been fired up about them along with tons of daily ingredients that I need to worry about to get my life straightened out and to make it worthwhile.  More then once I wanted to dive into my keyboard but then I wondered what others their opinion would be about them.  I like to think about myself as being a rather impartial person who will think things through before even picking sides in to many situations.

Sometimes the world around does cause me mind to go overdrive because I do wonder what to think of feel about certain news. I am only human and I am not perfect, I have got many flaws, I do have got my own opinion and thaughts about many things but do I wish to be judged on that part?  Well, as it turns out there is no way back because living in the world past 9/11 is rather tricky. Everything and everything is looked at with a magnifying glass.  Not that I have ever given permission to tap my phone, snap picture of me while I am travelling the world or having a cupcake in Brussels, to read my Facebook posts or emails, etc.  And me be being on Twitter is for sure also not the safest place to hang out if I want to live under the radar.  Nah, I do have clicked on many little boxes that said I do agree with the terms of use. The link that was below that square I did click on as well be honest I did not always read all the lines that then popped up on my screen!

Do I then feel safe and do I still feel I have got something as privacy? Well, the idea that there is always someone looking along my shoulders is sometimes not such nice feeling but at the same time I do know that privacy in the 21st century has become surrealistic. I try to put it into the right perspective but that is already a full time job and I don't have time for that.  I don't have time to any second to get the maximum out this one life that I have been granted.

Yesterday my other significant one told me something that I do think matters in all of these items.  When I found out that Russia had given permission to Snowdon to enter Moscow I wondered if we live in a free world and I we still have got something as privacy. 'You are not free.', he suddenly said. So freedom is an illussion? Just like Disneyland or the Efteling? Duh? I went silent because deep down I in a way understood what he tried to tell me.  'Freedom' has become such a complex matter. It is not so straightforward anymore.  It suddenly did remind me of that one scene in the HBO series 'The Newsroom'.  In many ways I feel exactly like the main charcater Will McAvoy. Because honestly there are moments that I would just do exactly the same as him and that is for once just tell everyone what I realy think about many things and issues.  But then he was triggered by gigantic cards that suddenly went up in the audience.   The words that were on those cards I consider true in many cases but it is hard work.    But deep down I still consider the life I am living for sure is very nice.  (Please keep now your voice down, pessimists out there.  For just a few minutes let me enjoy that one glass that is half full with vibrant and zesty sparkling Sicilian lemon refresher.  So don't even try to burst this bubble!)

Yes, I am now more then tempted to pull funny faces at the cameras that I pass in the metro, at work, in the balletstudio, at the bank and other places where I pass through while I try to make sense of my life.  The 'Smile, you are on candid camera'-attitude is for sure the one I try to live by this Summer and on social networks I try to spread to the message of love, peace and compassion. That is hard work and the Daila Lama would for sure approve of me giving my best. As long as I can have my ice cream cone at the end of the day. Food safety or that is an other one..... Wait that is one bridge to far for this entry or isn't it?  Oh, guess where I am hanging out next week for three days full of illussion? Yeah, the Efelting! Have yourself all a lovely 'free of what you everything wish for' Summer. 

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