So long, pepper

Hey! Back from USA. Reading online publicly noted police missions from the last month up until now. Trying to find if I can get a direct answer to a really eerie gut feeling I caught today while I was riding my bike over dark canals in the evening. Some not so well lit bike paths I crossed, and steep, dark stone steps ahead to which I finally said “no thanks.”

I feel a bit like the feeling I got from watching Nightcrawler. I noticed such random things today! Like there is this site that sells pepper spray, but then I went to compare prices and learned that the pepper spray is counted in as a weapon in Sweden and goes under the “weapon-law” or alike over here… but the pepper ingredient it’s what’s causing the ban like… so then this other site highlights that sites who are indeed selling the pepper spray aren’t legal and if you’d get it and use it on someone then you could be taken in for an assault charge… “heavy” assault even, or what the proper definition is in English. Intense assault… don’t want that.

Actually, as a kid we’d say the “bad guy” pepprade (peppered) down “his” victims… so why is that? Because non ground pepper look like bullets?

And I searched for Pepper + military because wasn’t there a military cadence about a famous veteran called Pepper? Found in Military & Gov-related instead that it is an abbrev. of “Police Enforcement Policy and Programmes on European Roads (EU)” ha! So much meaning… I guess I also read somewhere on google now that to join the MP in the U.S. you have to first have been pepper-sprayed in the face. Ouch.

So, on the Swedish site (2nd one) there was this volunteer in the video that was testing out this other legal version that also marks the perpetrator with red paint. And I thought of buying the whole set of a holster and the spray only so I could safely ride my bike places in the dark.

Going back in time to just before last New Years I remember hearing fireworks that sounded sort of like gun shots. As I checked the police updates I found that they’d had some 30 reports on a day leading up to New Year’s Eve. “Strangely, no one got hurt.” One police had reported…
Sounds to me like an episode of Twin Peaks or something.
When is that new version coming out anyway?

You know what I’m in the mood for? A steak so rare you could sell it at Tiffany’s!

– Gordon

Reading this too: 5 Gut Instincts You Shouldn’t Ignore 

And I of course applied for a job as a Black Jack-dealer, but heck – can you answer 20 math questions like the following (in 3 minutes): 174/2 x3 +129. If so the job is is yours – you can have it OK?! It’s fine! I’m good at other things. I did a nice melting cheese today before bed for instance. Could make that a yoga move… I’m creative like that. Ps. Watch Absolutely Fabulous – the movie… great 1. Watched it on the plane outbound.

Goodnight folks! Sleep soundly and well! *Hidden Fences* premiers in yer dreams only tonight, check it out. Imaginative producer: M. Keaton… ✨ 😉
– Bebe

True Holidaze

Applied for the police series casting anyway. I wrote a post about applying previously but I deleted it because it bored me. My hair style is quite like that *Detective Ani Bezzerides*, but longer and lighter, so… Otherwise I suppose I’ll wait until later with reading the Rolling Stones article about what went wrong with Season 2 of True Detective!? I’m watching it. It’s dark.

I got a book too, Freedom, by Jonathan Franzen. ‘A masterpiece’, according to New York Times. Anyone read it? I just wanted to read something good.

Heard some fireworks this evening. Can’t be fun for someone who’s a veteran with PTSD, I suppose? As with dogs. Unless they know how so well how different weapons sound that it wouldn’t sound like a small gun or anything. I biked through the woods along an empty road and thought about the forrest as looking kind of welcoming now that I’ve been out there somewhat more this year, then across a river in the dark – which reminded me of running intervalls in winter, up north (most of us looked close to throwing up during that). We’d thrown our ice cleats to rest at the beginning of this bridge, then we put them back on and jogged home in double columns.

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Thinking about joining a gun club across the river and bike there. I’d get the workout from the biking back and forth, and I’d re-live some of the army thrills at the range. Maybe after New York I’m going to go and see them. The thing is that when I do, I want to really commit to it if so. So I’m going to think about it. Can one even bike while carrying here? And can you even store a gun (in Sweden) in a Student apartment? The laws are so strict… speaking of strict: tomorrow I have to code in HTML Strict… yessir. Goodnight.

or “Bon-fn-voyage…

Bebe

A Kafkaesque Westworld

Is Westworld based on Kafkaesque ideas? Isn’t it very Kafkaesque!? Even the bureaucracy of the organization under Dr. Robert Ford (Anthony Hopkins) itself. Also isn’t he a “prisoner of his own ego”? And his characters’ “struggles that come from within”
And characters waking up, not as bugs but, as someone they don’t recognize as being themselves.

 

“By fine-tuning our attention to the absurd… Kafka also reflects our shortcomings back at ourselves. In doing so, he reminds us that the world we live in is one we create, and have the power to change for the better.”

 

Ps. Compare the piano-tunes in Westworld with the Kafka (1991) soundtrack. Ds.

 

References:

 

Kafka. (1991). [film] USA: Steven Soderbergh.

 

TED-Ed, (2016). What makes something “Kafkaesque”? – Noah Tavlin. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wkPR4Rcf4ww [Accessed 8 Dec. 2016].

Crime victim support staff needed

Hey, it’s been a while. Didn’t forget you! I’m finishing off a UX-design course right now, learning some cool things and am to spruce up this site a bit – make it into my online portfolio, with the blog as well. I soon have to get back to creating more wireframes in Balsamiq. And I booked a much longed-for trip to New York in the new year! Much excited about that!

I was reading an article on stuff to do if you’re alone on the holidays (or at least on xmas day). It seems the train tickets are a mess around this time of the year… expensive, and 4-5 changes instead of 1 (train to bus changes that are normally just train), and I have a class in coding over the holidays as well that I need to finish another portfolio for before I fly out.

So, one of the first thing on the list of to-dos that one could do when alone was to volunteer, the article let me know. I thought, hey that’s a great idea – I’ve volunteered before, it’s badass and good for people so why not, I can do that. However, I don’t believe in the “lord”, you know, more like; hard work, motivational strategies, whatever-works-for-yous-all, and the law of attraction!? So, it doesn’t really make sense to me to be participating in a church ceremony and serve food… the “advertisement” said nothing about homeless people, immigrants, or veterans, which may have convinced me more? If you’re in Sweden and want to check for volunteer events yourselves, here is a page I found that posts a lot of volunteer work, incl. what I just mentioned: Volontärbyrån  – you can search by city or anything like. I have volunteer worked at SPCA in Tel Aviv before, and I know for a fact that there is a kitty shelter on the upper east side in New York so definitely check that out. I believe ASPCA of NYC need their volunteers to come in pretty regularly as well (or perhaps just with dog walkers) but I’d encourage you to read up on it.  In Tel Aviv, I helped bring in a malnourished kitty that my friend had found alone and lost on the street – brought it across town in a cardboard box with holes via bus. If you had access to a car there you could help in more “advanced” rescue missions as well, maybe that goes for NYC, too, I’m not sure?

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Well, also I did watch Before The Flood and I’ve had more vegetarian food of late. But when I have time I shall make American Pancakes… I did buy some eggs and milk the other day. Most of my food have been organic of late as well. Dunno, environment has been increasingly on my mind. But it’s caused me to think more now that I’m aware. For example, I thought I’d buy tofu ice cream and I leaned into the “ice cream” ice  box in the store to grab the one I’ve seen so many times when I was younger at kids’ parties where someone was lactose-intolerant… the TofuLine one like. Has an octagon shape, black color like UFC-inspired perhaps. Love the UFC, so it felt cool, right!? Well – PALM OIL. Dammit. What’s better now? Locally produced ice-cream, or who-knows-wherefrom-derived vegan/vegetarian brand incl. palm-oil?

To my point with this post however, I found something in my style in regards to volunteer work… only it wouldn’t do it for just the holidays, I’d have to commit for a longer time. But that may just be what I want to do for this next year… this ! (It’s a crime victim support service) You learn some stuff… call people, help ’em in court… I think it’s awesome. But there’s a lower limit to your monthly involvement. I think something like 6-8 hours, 3 cases (supports) like? Either way, I was in the military and studied some crime stuff and it struck me that there sure is a lack of bravery and lack of staff for these kinda professions. I mean bravery and knowledge about such as what you’re allowed to do when someone attacks you and tries to steal your laptop or something. Can you hit them back? For instance, I learned that if I saw someone do that to you (military or not) I could step in and help ya – with some force, too (matching the level of the criminal) – it’s called “Hjälparens rätt” in Sweden. *Helper’s rights* or something.

How many people knew that? Or what if someone starts a fight in a club or at a bar and goes ballistic, starting to punch on an innocent… it shouldn’t be so that people don’t dare to step in to stop it just because they don’t want to get involved in court later (perhaps they’d think they might be mixed up as being the perpetrator). That’s why I think crime victims should always have someone to talk to and teach them about their rights, and let them know how they may stand up for themselves – at least later on if they couldn’t do it earlier because either they didn’t know of their rights or they were simply outed by the criminal. A lot of people are needed for this I read. I’m considering it. Also because I think it would be a life-experience, and I like law – I noticed however that it takes many years of studying which is costly even in Sweden, and furthermore that it’s bound by country (since national laws differ from place to place)… if I had the money and was born in America I may have at least become a paralegal though. I saw a great award-winning short film last year that I found out about through the course I was taking in Digital Movie Making at the time. It was fantastic! You can read about it on IndieWire. The Phone Call.

Also here is a trailer for it:

Will you be a volunteer this holiday season? Or are you a regular volunteer at some place?

Let me know in the comments below, or tweet me!

Take care, and wherever you are, whoever with – happy holidays

-Bebe 

Movement and motivation

Hey everyone,

Hope you are well! I wanted to check in with you and share some news. I finished my book about learning and digital yesterday, it’s called 11:11. I will try to publish it here on the blog for you all to see very soon! But first off, let me say I’ve had this beautiful time of learning today.

I started off with some yoga at home, and then I went onto doing some pushups, working my back muscles with some weights, etc. and started listening to a complete Feldenkrais lesson on YouTube at the same time! Feldenkrais was a physicist! I really liked the introductory  talk about him. Very motivational. Much worth it! 🙂

I just realized something massive when I followed this whole video and did the lesson! If the brain only wants to adjust to where it sees “possibility” in terms of movement as I both heard from the teacher and was able to feel for myself here, then maybe the thoughts work similarly? And perhaps that’s why the Law of Attraction (The Secret) and similar methods (The Silva Method) work; because you truly imagine possibility! And also while show jumping, you’re supposed to look at the next obstacle already while you’re flying over one… maybe that’s just a way to put our attention on the next thing so that our body moves with us and the horse can feel it and so it, too, turns easier as a result… rather than that we can “think ahead”. Wow. Because in horsemanship you practice a lot of small movements as well – working with the movement of the horse instead of against it or trying to be the one who decides over it.

I’m going to work on my script now. Shooting next week. But I felt I should share this experience. I was sitting down and looking over to my left shoulder… well, barely! I was barely looking past my left shoulder to begin. Whereas the end of this lesson I was able to look past the point of right behind me. The brain is magnificent! Really.

Also I tried this TheraPearl eye mask, putting it on for 20 minutes before I got to sleep. And so I’ll listen to The Silva Method (the long relaxation exercise) while I keep the mask on… kind of drift off to sleep for a bit, wake up by an alarm I’ve set for 20 min., take the mask off and just put it by my side on a table without leaving bed… and then drift fully into sleep! Next morning I have almost no dark circles under my eyes, not much puffiness… and I feel lovely!:) Tomorrow I’m getting a haircut and I’m going to have a wonderful weekend myself, I wish the same for you… and may all your wishes come true!

-Bebe

“Batman” appears in England, clown sightings, VR+current tech trends & advertising ethics

2010-2012: Discussion in college (NYC) that the times make people crave a certain kind of movies… like, all the superhero movies could stem out of a need for “escape” from daily life – a hope for something good to come.

2015: VR movie exhibits in New York, “VR” glasses in cardboard appear in Sweden…

2016: VR painting and VR games now emerge, and—while movies are good and all (Marvel had a big deal with Netflix and released a bunch of new series)—people start to create characters in daily life, like: clowns… and Batman – who take it to the (REAL) streets. So, people crave, perhaps, something more than film as their escape now because with time, digitalization has really stepped up as well! Just watch this clip right here. Someone dressed as Batman is currently out “protecting” people against wild clowns in England (Villasor, 2016). It’s supposed to be funny too, but it’s kind of too much for me right now. I just watched clips from someone playing the Batman Arkham VR game for playstation last night – from the look of it, the digital graphics work is quite highly detailed. With both your body and eyes fully immersed… it’s a long step forward from the days of Nintendo Wii (GameRiot, 2016). I’ve read some discussions that people think this whole clown matter is a result of a kind of mass-mania—I wish I remembered where I read that, sorry about that (“Google is your *friend*”)— but basically think about it… the Brexit? Trump potentially becoming the new President of the United States of America? This is all some intense news – no wonder people are in shock! I remember that I saw an online video of BoJo’s (Boris Johnson’s) reaction to the news about the Brexit—or sometime around that result getting official—he was heading to the golf course! Like it wasn’t affecting a whole lot of people. 

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Furthermore, I’ve noticed that there is a lot of scary movies out right now and in the last few days there has been countless of times that the trailer for HBO’s Westworld (HBO, 2016) has popped up at 0:19 seconds in with a strobe light—without warning—in an automatic-ad for other content. Every time it has happened I haven’t been able to help myself but to think about how an epileptic person would’ve felt if they were me and that commercial came on as a surprise.

I’ve also followed to two quite “scary” Swedish podcasts this year. One called “De Dödas Röster”, roughly translated into English: “The Voices of the Dead” (Bergmark Elfgren, 2016)—a documentation and stories in regards to a real murder that happened a few years ago in Sweden, apparently categorized as genre: drama—and another podcast that still is in production: “Creepypodden” – being categorized as: culture/entertainment (Sveriges Radio, 2015), which is basically a podcast telling ghost stories from Swedish folklore and pages like the NoSleep forum and Creepypasta that you can find by a quick Google search.

The so called “Slender Man” case, as mentioned in a Rolling Stones article from this summer (Dunlap, 2016), is originally a fictional story from either Creepypasta or NoSleep that I heard about through Creepypodden which has gone “from horror meme to inspiration for murder”.

I also can’t help but think about much of the latest emerging tech that I’ve seen come up in my Facebook story feed as well, such as boxes for locking up your cellphones while you study? Now that many of us have got rid of the landlines in our homes, how does one call for emergency help with that cellphone locked in a box? I’m certified in CPR from this year and have learned how to work with heart starters, anyway, it’s not like you get a heart attack and you have time to log into your laptop that’s up on a table and Skype-call emergency services! It seems the idea of these *lockup containers* is to make it impossible for you to access a thing for a certain amount of time (unless perhaps you break the box with force, which you won’t be able to during a heart attack so… too bad). As a family looking for family-time (some of you I’ve talked to already), please take security into consideration before shutting off all technical communication methods, OK?

But then again, we may wonder how much other people track us simply by having our electronics switched on. I suppose people may get a little paranoid from thinking about that too much, too. I noticed a message on WhatsApp sometime this year (August) about how my messages now were “secured with end-to-end encryption,” which meant “WhatsApp and third parties can’t read or listen to them.” So I suppose that would be better because before they could track and and read all the things that I sent?

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I haven’t noticed Creepypodden release any new stories in regards to the clown-sightings that apparently have started in Sweden now as well and is fully happening “right now”. According to a Swedish newspaper source video “there have been over 100 clown-sightings in the last two months” and way more in America where it’s supposed to have all *started* (Wikström, 2016). 

If the clowns are simply a PR-stunt for a movie or alike that comes out in a while – I don’t think it’s ethical to threaten people by walking around with machetes near or on people’s yards as some of these clowns seem to have done. So maybe change tactics now, huh? The joke is not on “you”, *PR-firm*, this whole thing has spiralled too far. I just find it hard to believe that someone would do this for PR, you know? I know it’s close to Halloween but, come on?

To walk around in ‘V for Vendetta’ masks has been banned before (Pollak, 2013) and I even saw one article mention that the ‘Anonymous’ mask (same thing?) has now been banned in America… but don’t quote me on that because I’m not completely sure about my source there, so I’ll leave it for you all to find out. Overall though, who likes to see people wear masks around anyhow? It’s creepy! Perhaps in a museum or somewhere boxed in where you know that it’s for art purposes and don’t have to feel threatened – or how about keeping it to the good old amusement parks or something? But I guess the amusement parks want to expand on their creative approaches too. So much or art is “free” to get access too nowadays, you know, you don’t have to pay any service fee on youtube for example, but rather you pay for the ads that cross your path. Perhaps youtube will have to start implementing a premium-option where you can get rid of all the ads? They haven’t got that yet, right? 

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I can’t say that it’s easier to handle creepy stories just because I live in Sweden, even though crime is a big genre here. I feel like horror and reality-based fiction is the new crime of late. I’ve noticed a lot of covers on hardcover books are way more graphic these days… perhaps in the last 5 years or so? From what I’ve seen, that is (my mother is an avid reader)! Some murder stories are apparently categorized as dramas, such as the case with that podcast I mentioned, and you can’t be sure to avoid getting scared these days. I’m simply curious as to where all this will lead?

We discussed picture ethics in class the other week and I wrote this analysis about an advertisement (by The Royal Opera House of Sweden) that had brought about an ethical debate in the news at the end of year 2015. The immigration number during that time was really high (in Sweden) too – you can check out October through November stats from that year via Migrationsverket. Another world crisis that may have caused that kind of mass-anxiety and such, right!? Not having a home and having to flee your country on a boat must be absolutely terrible and I can’t imagine the fear and worry… fleeing from war… I can’t go into it all in this post but these are some harsh times right now. Pictures from these kind of news have also stirred up much debate. Nightcrawler from 2014—movie—great performance by Gyllenhaal… the story about a guy who does anything to get that news footage – definitely touched on a similar kind of ethical debate.

Anyway, so in class, we also got to see examples a bunch of pictures and materials created, etc. that had been questioned sometimes many years later for being potentially or sometimes clearly unethical. OK, so I asked the teacher: “How can we ever be artists if what we put out now, being ethically alright at the moment, won’t be in 10-80 years?”
“Well,” the teacher said. “Interesting point! You can’t know that it all will be fine but without any kind of risk-taking in art, how can you expect to create something original or noteworthy?”

Clown phobia, or “coulrophobia” (Goldhill, 2015) may have existed for some time, but I can think of countless comedy sketches, movies and examples where clowns are portrayed as fun but albeit a little sad characters – supposed to cheer people up. I had a friend who worked extra as a clown in America, at kids parties. Well, I suppose nobody would pay to have a clown come to their party now, right? Or am I wrong? Maybe old clown ads will be the subject of ethics class for future college students? The Ronald McDonald clown has been around from 1963… that’s 43 years ago. But will *he* (/it) be around 10 years from now? 

People thought old playstation games etc. influenced kids to get crazy ideas and have a hard time separating life from fiction. What about the breakthrough or VR? Could it be more than just a cool advancement of tech – how will it affect the kids of tomorrow who won’t have reference to the world as it was before this kind of technology strongly mixed with everyday life?

 Thoughts?

 

Bebe

Bibliography

Bergmark Elfgren, S. (2016). [podcast] De dödas röster. Available at: http://sverigesradio.se/sida/avsnitt/741005?programid=4947 [Accessed 15 Oct. 2016].

Dunlap, B. (2016). ‘Slender Man’ Trial: Why Trying These Girls as Adults Is Absurd. [online] Rolling Stone. Available at: http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/features/slender-man-trial-trying-these-girls-as-adults-is-absurd-w431464 [Accessed 15 Oct. 2016].

GameRiot, (2016). Batman Arkham VR Gameplay Walkthrough Part 2 – PENGUIN (PLAYSTATION VR) Full Game. [online video] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=njQgPkR0AhA&feature=youtu.be [Accessed 15 Oct. 2016].

Goldhill, O. (2015). Why are we so scared of clowns?. [online] Telegraph.co.uk. Available at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/halloween/11194653/Why-are-we-so-scared-of-clowns.html [Accessed 15 Oct. 2016].

HBO, (2016). Westworld Trailer (HBO) – MATURE VERSION. [online video] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IuS5huqOND4 [Accessed 15 Oct. 2016].

Sveriges Radio, (2015). Avsnitt 1: Black eyed children. [podcast] Creepypodden. Available at: http://sverigesradio.se/sida/avsnitt?programid=4845 [Accessed 15 Oct. 2016].

Villasor, T. (2016). Real-life Batman stands against Clown Attacks. [online] GMA News Online. Available at: http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/585064/scitech/technology/real-life-batman-stands-against-clown-attacks [Accessed 15 Oct. 2016].

Wikström, S. (2016). Clowner sätter skräck – flera larm till polisen. [online] Expressen. Available at: http://www.expressen.se/gt/brak-med-clowner–polisen-pa-vag/ [Accessed 15 Oct. 2016].