reciprocity in friendship

November 12, 2010

Another wonderful thought from Nietzsche that made me think a bit.

“People who have given us their complete confidence believe that they have a right to ours. The inference is false, a gift confers no rights.”

I definitely understand the need for a balance or equality between people especially when we expose our selves (I have this same need), but there is something to think about here. Just because I have shared my secrets with you, does not make you obligated, willing or able to do the same. Another related thought, that makes me question the way I deal with people, says:

“A friend should be a master at guessing and keeping still: you must not want to see everything.”

…because seeing everything inevitable leads to seeing ugliness.

the ritual of dinner

October 10, 2010

I’m reading “The Ritual of Dinner” by Margaret Visser that I just got from some friends. It is about the customs of eating together and how they came to be. How could you not love a book that starts with …

“Violence, after all, is necessary if any organism is to ingest another. Animals are murdered to produce meat; vegetables are torn up, peeled, and chopped; most of what we eat is treated with fire; and chewing is designed remorselessly to finish what killing and cooking began. People naturally prefer that none of this should happen to them. Behind every rule of table etiquette lurks the determination of each person present to be a diner, not a dish. It is one of the chief roles of etiquette to keep the lid on the violence which the meal being eaten presupposes.”

I’m looking forward to the rest!

no bull in catalonia

August 5, 2010

I’m very proud of the Catalan government for banning bull-fighting (by 2012) in the autonomous community of Catalonia. The parliamentary vote (67 for the ban, 59 against) was historic in a place that romances the torture of animals; I agree that the art of the matador is elegant, colourful and beautiful, but let’s not overlook the actual act that is being committed.

bull being tortured to death

I am not against people eating meat per se, but to cruelly kill an animal slowly and tauntingly for the pleasure of thousands seems a bit barbaric to me. Now when will the rest of Spain catch up? I won’t hold my breath – tradition is slow to change.

sex ed

June 8, 2010

Seems like the Catholic Church (in addition to other mind-control religions) is against Dalton McGuinty’s sex education curriculum because it dares to view homosexual relationships as tolerated. Well I guess that’s okay since the Catholic Church has their very own unique method for sexually educating kids.

Please don’t read this as trivializing the Church’s sexual abuse patterns or as a stereotyping of all priests. I think that a large percentage of priests Read the rest of this entry »

the great war

June 7, 2010

I watched an outstanding play last weekend called “The Great War” – playing at the Cameron House on Queen Street West. It was witty, playful, funny, but still relevant about the atrocities and darkness of war.

This play was revealing in its meagerness of materials – no Mirvish production here. It goes to show that all you need is great acting, great lighting, and great costumes and props. I couldn’t believe how effective they were with a tiny stage and well-timed lighting and dialogue. Highly recommended.

blue blood sucking

May 17, 2010

I just watched a documentary on the relationship between a shorebird and a crab-like creature – the red knot and the horseshoe crab. The birds depend on the excess horseshoe crab eggs as fuel for their multi-day migration from the southern hemisphere to the arctic where they mate.

The horseshoe crab has a very interesting history – it is a very old creature and scientists, ecologists and medical researchers are very interested in it for various reasons. In particular, its miracle blue blood is of great interest to medical researchers and led to a disturbing scene (to me) in the documentary of a row of horseshoe crabs being bled. I couldn’t help thinking of the ethics behind this practice even though the blue blood is life-saving for humans. In fact, this catch-bleed-return policy is not without trouble; there is a 10% to 15% mortality rate.

The medical research and blood extraction is not the horseshoe crab’s worst problem. It was (and still is) over-harvested for use as bait for eel and conch traps. Millions of horseshoe crabs were harvested (easily since they crawl to the beach to lay their eggs) until the effects were seen on the red knot population that depends on them for food. Currently there is a moratorium in some states and the outlook seems promising, but the timing is critical – will the horseshoe crabs rebound before red knots go extinct?

boobquake 2010

April 26, 2010

“Female immodesty is killing thousands of innocent people…Many women who do not dress modestly … lead young men astray, corrupt their chastity and spread adultery in society, which (consequently) increases earthquakes

This theory by Iranian cleric Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi is being tested across the world today (instigated by Jen McCreight) with recorded measurements of seismic activity in relation to female immodesty. Should be a fun day for all.

Update: Sure enough there were enough earthquakes yesterday (as the day before) to support everyone’s theory. The discussions continue.