5 songs for your next Quiet Time

Everyone needs some R&R: long grueling day, lost your keys, boss won’t stop hovering over you, spilled milk, or when it seems every friggin person got up in the morning just to get in your hair. Some quiet music helps.

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, even some Kenny G. You need to have talent to even become a cliche.

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Will the environment suffer if the world’s poor get a better standard of living?

The answer is, no. According to Oxfam:

  • Providing enough food for the 13% of the world’s people who suffer from hunger means raising world food supplies by just 1%.
  • Providing electricity to the 19% of people who currently have none would raise global carbon emissions by just 1%.
  • Bringing everyone above the global absolute poverty line ($1.25 a day) would need just 0.2% of global income.
  • In other words, it is not the needs of the poor that threaten the biosphere, but the demands of the rich. Half the world’s carbon emissions are produced by just 11% of its people, while, with grim symmetry, 50% of the world’s people produce just 11% of its emissions. Animal feed used in the EU alone, which accounts for just 7% of the world’s people, uses up 33% of the planet’s sustainable nitrogen budget.

So it is the rich that are using up the global resource budget.

Toss these statistics at someone’s face the next time they tell you that feeding the poor means your next bill at Walmart or Carrefour is going to cost more; I like to stand armed.

 

You can read the full article by George Monbiot at the Guardian from where this information was obtained.

12 useful tips for young writers

Writer Ray Bradbury shares his advice on the most important things to remember for young and new writers. The best part about his advice is that it is direct without any fluff, and most of all,  it clicks.

The 12 tips below are taken from OpenCulture.com‘s Colin Marshall. These were the notes and gist Colin got from Bradbury’s 1 hour keynote address at Point Loma Nazarene University.

  1. Don’t start out writing novels. They take too long. Begin your writing life instead by cranking out “a hell of a lot of short stories,” as many as one per week. Take a year to do it; he claims that it simply isn’t possible to write 52 bad short stories in a row. He waited until the age of 30 to write his first novel, Fahrenheit 451. “Worth waiting for, huh?”
  2. You may love ‘em, but you can’t be ‘em. Bear that in mind when you inevitably attempt, consciously or unconsciously, to imitate your favorite writers, just as he imitated H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, Arthur Conan Doyle, and L. Frank Baum.
  3. Examine “quality” short stories. He suggests Roald Dahl, Guy de Maupassant, and the lesser-known Nigel Kneale and John Collier. Anything in the New Yorker today doesn’t make his cut, since he finds that their stories have “no metaphor.”
  4. Stuff your head. To accumulate the intellectual building blocks of these metaphors, he suggests a course of bedtime reading: one short story, one poem (but Pope, Shakespeare, and Frost, not modern “crap”), and one essay. These essays should come from a diversity of fields, including archaeology, zoology, biology, philosophy, politics, and literature. “At the end of a thousand nights,” so he sums it up, “Jesus God, you’ll be full of stuff!”
  5. Get rid of friends who don’t believe in you. Do they make fun of your writerly ambitions? He suggests calling them up to “fire them” without delay.
  6. Live in the library. Don’t live in your “goddamn computers.” He may not have gone to college, but his insatiable reading habits allowed him to “graduate from the library” at age 28.
  7. Fall in love with movies. Preferably old ones.
  8. Write with joy. In his mind, “writing is not a serious business.” If a story starts to feel like work, scrap it and start one that doesn’t. “I want you to envy me my joy,” he tells his audience.
  9. Don’t plan on making money. He and his wife, who “took a vow of poverty” to marry him, hit 37 before they could afford a car (and he still never got around to picking up a license).
  10. List ten things you love, and ten things you hate. Then write about the former, and “kill” the later — also by writing about them. Do the same with your fears.
  11. Just type any old thing that comes into your head. He recommends “word association” to break down any creative blockages, since “you don’t know what’s in you until you test it.”
  12. Remember, with writing, what you’re looking for is just one person to come up and tell you, “I love you for what you do.”Or, failing that, you’re looking for someone to come up and tell you, “You’re not nuts like people say.”

100 posts Special!

WordPress tells me this is my 100th post. This calls for something special (because I don’t know when/if I’ll get to another e-milestone). So I have been saving this one.

Very dear and I am not even sure why. It is my parachute of tranquility and I deploy it sparingly. The lyrics don’t add up but strangely it does not matter to me. Only doubt is that sometimes I am not sure if the guitar riff at the end was necessary. Either way it’s a calm delight.

Blonde on Blonde by Nada Surf.