Posts Tagged ‘Face Book’

Love Boat

July 24, 2013

Love Boat.
I remember a good friend who thought he would join one of those introduction schemes in order to meet a nice and good woman. This was many years ago when meeting someone was still done in real life. Today this is done by the push of a mouse or keyboard in solitary confinement in front of a screen. Women advertise on line in various modes of (un)dress and men inside various vehicles or even behind maritime vessel’s steering wheels. I have yet to see a man in those romantic love advertisements photographed behind a book or hewing away at a piece of marble, or playing outdoor chess. Art is out and rugged maleness is in.

Even so, there seems to be an almost insatiable need for couples still to meet. If you go to ‘face book’ (please note I don’t abbreviate it into FB and I hate the assumption of so many IT people abbreviating everything in a couple of letters) one can’t escape numerously languid looking females enticing the FB fan to meet up.

One advertisement stated Natasha wants ‘B Bs only.
Well, I am more of a T S E boy, so, Natasha can cut me out.
The ads are overwhelmingly by girls with breasts generously splayed over the edges and males splaying over their steering wheels of expensive cars or leaning casually against a yacht.

Anyway, all those many years ago, this good friend of mine, his name was Otto, did the right thing and joined a group of similar minded people wanting to meet others through this introduction agency. A ferry was hired and all would get aboard and each would bring food and drinks. I wasn’t there, but I suppose even before boarding, people would have already been coyly scanning each other on the quay side. There is always so much hope invested in meeting the right one, isn’t it?

Otto told me he had bought a small piece of raw steak and a large bottle of Fanta orange drink. He wasn’t fond of alcohol. I thought he could have packed something a bit more romantic for on the ferry, but that was Otto. He was deadly honest in dealing with people which often came out either hilariously funny or somewhat clumsy. Otto was a good man, and as stated before, he wanted a good woman.

I was curious how it all went. Oh, he said,” it was terribly boring and the worst was I could not get off the bloody ferry.” Yes, but did you meet any nice ladies, I asked? Oh, not too many. I went and offered bits of my steak around, but no one wanted any. They were all eating cubes of cheese and gherkins with ham around it and sipping Cold Duck Champagne. One man had brought a complete chicken in a basket with bread-rolls. No one brought steaks! The chicken in the basket man, ended up with a nice lady and towards the end they were kissing.

Otto remained a bachelor his whole life. He did never seem to meet a ‘nice’ partner, someone who could see past his rather practical and utterly unromantic demeanor. I suppose we all dream of the unattainable, the sexiest, the utterly devastatingly masculine, the supine languidly feminine, the ultimate Eve and apple giver. I reckon, personally, the long lasting relationships are those made in the kitchen of ‘give and take’ with the mortar and pestle of love, grinding it all together into a most delicious and enduring everlasting paste of togetherness. Eternally cooing pigeons springs to mind but that is perhaps overstating it a bit… The readers on this blog are not into purple prose.

The ones wanting the unobtainable and unattainable love potions prove themselves right each time, hence the incursion and flooding of all those ‘meet the right partner’ ads on FB and so many other IT pages.
What do you think?
B B= Big Boys
T S E= Thomas S Eliot

It used to be so simple before Face-Book and GPS

August 17, 2012

If modern technology was supposed to make life easier, why has it become more difficult? We have a vacuum cleaner now instead of the simple broom. The broom never needed the dust bag taken out nor did we trip over any cords or twisting and warping extensions. It was a pleasure sweeping up. A ritual steeped in a pre-historic age of endless time and social intercourse. True, the broom has less ‘cyclonic’ properties but the children suffered less asthma, they were blissfully loaded up with plenty of good immunizing bacterial and dust particles preventing asthma. The broom never let us down, nor was there ever a problem with the retracting cord being stuck again. It also never had a red warning light come or gave us choking fits slapping the dust bag against the yellow lidded large garbage bin on wheels.

As for the modern car; do we really believe it has ‘climate control?’ Does it prevent thunder storms or ‘willy willies around the Nullarbor?  With our old car one had the option of winding down, opening the windows, let in fresh air and some lovely rain. Now, we remain cocooned inside, a cold and impersonal ‘climate controlled’ interior of a metal box, all anxiously waiting for the bleep of the next mobile call on the blue tooth enabled ‘application’.  The kids strapped in at the back getting hyped up on an incomprehensible video called Splat-a-Lot and inexhaustible supply of lollies.

The GPS keeps on blurting in a perfect female English voice; ‘You are over the speed limit’ intermingled with ‘ Doing new re-calculations’, meaning we have been aerially booked and are also hopelessly lost. After one hour the video and lollies at the back have run out and a riot ensues. In the sixties, kids in cars used to read Pick-Wick papers or P.G Wodehouse’s Jeeves. That’s now changed in fighting over who is hogging more than 50% of the back seat and ‘”you have your knee on my half.”  “No, but you chucked a lolly wrapper at me first.”  The ‘climate’ is now decidedly getting humid and with the GPS having guided the car into a dead-end dirt road, dad is fuming, ends up sobbing with rage above the retractable steering wheel. He violently puts the car into a traction control reverse and slowly loses the will to go on.  The GPS keeps rattling on “Doing Recalculation” on and on. It’s all so hopeless. Yet, it used to be so simple with the Gregory.

Of course, if there is one invention having complicated our lives beyond redemption it would have to be the IT technology and its murderous regime of demolishing our once highly held unassailable self esteem. With the explosion of IT I have come to the bitter realization that the rest of the world gets more clicks and followers than me. I understand and know that even my best friends on Face Book are avoiding me. Since two hours, not a single vibrating growl on my Iphone. A text sent to one of my Face Book “best friend” who I have never met (or ever will meet) is not responding. The bitch is now vetting my texts as well as my voice mail. I had a missed call but it was from someone that used to be a best friend but I deleted her twenty minutes ago. That will teach her!

I sit on a park bench now waiting for a call on my interactive multi coloured apps infused IPad mobile and am totally ignoring the cooing pigeons. I used to feed them bits of my sandwich. Now, I ignore and just hatefully scowl at them. Social Media has got me in and me bullying pigeons is now the logical result. I’ll kick the dog next. I am sunk in a thick gloom.

Remember the old telephone with its reassuring ring tone? People had the good manner to answer calls and it was never used as a tool to avoid people or as a device for torture. If the phone wasn’t answered it meant people were not home. Now, people glance at the caller’s ID and decide to ignore you or worse just give you the delete button treatment. You are at their mercy. Nice going, isn’t it?

It used to be so simple.

Avoid getting Face-Booked

June 4, 2012

Don’t get ‘Face-Booked’.

‘One is often lost for words’.

It is a nice expression but apart from the dumb being lost for words and perhaps the catatonically depressed, it is not true for most of us. Surely those that can speak have words to say? I know that in the world of IT and SMS many words are now at risk of disappearing. Scores are lining up and join the club of text and twitter (TnT). A  new language has been born, almost overnight. We now do ‘lol and Rolf’ with the best of them. We are anxious and forever on our qui vive,  not to be seen as total IT oafs and risk being left behind.

My new mobile has a most irritating habit of giving complete words when texting a message in letters. Boy, did I get close disemboweling myself while Rolfing on the floor with this predictive texting. How do people know all those ways of setting the technical boundaries on their equipment? With the new mobile which I thought was about the simplest one can buy, there are still too many features. It would lock when not in use. The instructions to unlock were mysterious because it would abbreviate without explaining what the abbreviations stood for. This is another source for hurling the cat around. Why is so much now abbreviated? Is there something wrong with a word that is complete?

The irony of texting giving complete words when one just wants to write a single letter gets completely lost on the TnT (text ‘n twitter) aficionados when they  go and twitter using single letters almost exclusively or, at best abbreviated abbreviations. I must confess though, I too have become entangled betwixt text and twitter. Yet, I am not bored, just old and short tempered with abbreviations; it doesn’t help anyone with looming Alzheimer  to try and deal with de-ciphering ‘http, cred, FSG Cdis and F.offs including 2finger etc. We all know that Twitter only accepts 140 characters including punctuation, dicritals and periodos. To say the most with the least is the Art of tweeting. Some tweets have been so succinct they have made their writers instant millionaires.

Not so lucky are those that piled into Face-book shares. With the price on day of listing at $38US they are now trading at $26.72, that’s  down 30%. Right now we are witnessing the birth of a new verb and it is ‘to face-book’. Many claim to have fallen victim and have been fatally ‘face-booked’. It means to have been lulled into something by mass hysteria.

The fanfare surrounding Face-Book listing was the culprit. The reality was so obvious and so clear, to stay away from the public listing, but many could not resist the hoopla and wanted but wasted a lot of money. Face-book’s clientele of 900 million spend about a $ 1.70 a day per person. Now compared with Amazon which clocks in at $ 32.50 per person, it makes the Face book share not much more worth than $ 7.50 per share. The market is betting that Face Book (FB) is going down with put options outpacing call options. A put option is an option whereby you sell at the present price but don’t settle till a later date hoping the price has gone down so your settlement amount is less than when you sold them for the higher price.  A call option is the opposite and bullish in nature.

I don’t know why I went off at a tangent into the share market but there you are, take it or leave it.

At least I still have words and so far have avoided having been ‘Face-Booked.’

How to avoid strangling a Belgian Draught Horse.

May 27, 2012

For many days my Twitter and Face book were out of action. The word ‘Twitter’, even when looked up on ‘Google’, would send shivers through my computer. The page would freeze, go stiff with rigor mortis and turn blue and incoherent. It turned out that ‘Blue Screen Page’ is a well known phenomenon. No one knows why, but scientists and engineers are working on it. There are a host of web- sides claiming they can cure Blue Screen. Those sides promise to be helpful and start off with a free scan and a further promise to clear it in less than 2 minutes. Not true. The free scan just turns you almost into a jellified blob of rage when showing their scan result. I was told, despite having Norton security, I had 129 viruses and 766 ‘problems’ on my computer. But… for $29. – (US) by credit card you will be Face-booking and Twittering again within a couple of minutes. Everything in the US seems to be measured in two minute time spans. Things move very fast there.

As soon as I see that the ‘free’ scan is a scam I naturally delete the page. Not so fast though governor!  Turns out those free US based scam web pages are difficult to delete. Most don’t have a delete option. Over and over, one is urged to down-load the credit card option and pay up. No wonder capitalism is in trouble, the cheek of it all.  I thought by turning off the computer I would get rid of those ‘free’ scan merchants. Not at all. I switch back on, and there is that same persistent page again. After a lot of moving backwards and forwards the scammers finally gave up the ghost.

I decided to take firm action and took the laptop to a reputable (non free-scan 2 minute) computer shop run by very young but savvy experts. They helped me before with a problem without even charging me. Always a good sign! They switched on the laptop and… it worked perfectly. There was my familiar Tweet page and Face-book. I couldn’t believe it. He put it into my list of favorites, “Gerard Twitter.” No charge again. Boy, was I on a roll?  Was so happy I shouted regular latte coffees and Danish delights all around for the two of us.

After doing some shopping at Aldi and walking home I did not give the Tweeting a second thought. That shows how supremely confident I was. Later on in the evening after a couple of Merlots, I felt like a good Tweet. It only needs a few words, so what the heck. With Face-booking I always feel it needs a more serious and literate level of involvement. That’s why I usually, but not always, do the Face-booking in the morning after a good night’s rest.

I opened the lid of the laptop and after a few seconds the home page arrived. I went to my list of favorites, just relishing the moment and allowing the luxury of hovering above “Gerard Twitter” button… and….. The Blue screen page was back on again. I was devastated, crestfallen. A blind fury welling up, totally lost for words.  Fuck Face-booking, fuck Tweeting and Fuck life.

Life is just like that. We move around getting involved into the ambit of things that can go wrong. Perhaps excluding relationships, there is nothing quite like the Internet Technology world whereby one walks a fine line between remaining sane or hovering on the edge of going out in the deep of a dark night and strangle a sheep or a Belgian draught horse. The world of IT including Iphone, pads, kindles and Apps is there to try our mettle. Have we got what it takes? Will we survive or end up smashed on the rocks of Blue Screen phenomena?

I survived and am here to tell the tale. What was the solution and how did the logistics of the Blue Screen Page get repaired. My daughter told me to always try and switch off the computer and then the router. I had switched everything off many times but not the router which gives me the ADSL internet connection through Telstra phone line.  I went downstairs in the bedroom where both phone and router are next to my bed blinking away intermittently. I switched all off and waited. I switched all on again and climbed upstairs to my computer. It all worked. Twitter and Face Book are back. Hoorah! I try and not think why Helvi’s computer never had this Blue Screen and yet uses the same connections. But there you are. That’s the devious world of IT. Never question it. Acceptance is the answer.

Never take it out on the Belgian Draught Horse.