How many times has this happened to you? You go out in the middle of the work week, mostly because of a social obligation. Maybe your friend is performing, and it’s at a bar, and hell, you’re not going to a bar and not having at least something, right? So, you go to the bar, and you have a drink or two before your friend goes on, and you watch the show, and you stick around to socialize and have another drink or two and suddenly, it’s closing time and you have to get home because you need to get some sleep before getting up to go to work in five hours…
As many of you probably know, I’m also available on LiveJournal, and on that site, I’m a member — mainly as a lurker — of a number of communities. One of them is critical of Christian fundamentalism, though (typically) from people without a generally-critical-of-religion viewpoint. (It does get a little refreshing to see people talking about the content, rather than just a general “You believe differently than me so you’re obviously wrong” type of statement.)
A while ago, someone posted a link to The God Who Wasn’t There, a recent documentary looking at the historical accuracy of the Bible, whether or not there was a historical Jesus, and all that sorta stuff. Apparently, it was posted to Google Video — I’m not sure if it was the full film or an edited down “Greatest Hits” version or not — I didn’t follow the link since I’d actually already seen the DVD.
Why do I collect records? I ask myself this from time to time (usually when I?m feeling as though I?m wasting a whole lot of money) and it?s at times like tonight that I realize exactly why I do.
I?ve recently been running through in my head why I must every couple of days go into a record store and get my fingers dusty. Why do I spend almost every spare cent that I have on these 12 inch pieces of wax? For as long as I?ve been a fan of Hip Hop I?ve always wanted to make beats. I grew up on a 100 acre ranch and when we moved to the bigger house on the property we also were granted access to a rather large shed. I was convinced that some how some way I would turn that shed into a recording studio and get to make music? that never happened.
Many articles have been written about the differences between face-to-face communication and the variety of text-based communication found on the Internet. While many people treat IRC or Instant Message-type programs as being wholly equal to face-to-face, there are occasional misunderstandings due to not having the added information of facial expressions or gestures. For example, something intended to be taken humorously could be perceived as an opinion actually held, leading to a potential falling out. Or, quite often, there will be a conversation, where one person is reading what the other person has to say, but has nothing to add themselves.
In a face-to-face conversation, this isn’t a problem. The listener would be able to nod, and the speaker would realize that the listener is engaged in what is being said and wishes to hear more. However, in a solely text-based medium, there is no way to silently nod, and so if the other person doesn‘t reply in the natural pauses, the “speaker” may think the other party has gone idle, or worse, is bored.
Normally, to combat this, the “listener” will respond with comments of very little conversational value. Statements like “I see,” or “Yes,” or ‘That’s true,” that add very little to what’s being said. Sometimes the “listener” is forced to cheat and use constructions like “*nods*” to add false actions to the realm of words. Of course, even these types of comments can (intentionally or not) convey disinterest; to avoid this, the “listener” might feel compelled to respond with an Eliza-like parroting of what the “speaker” just wrote. These sorts of comments are not only as empty as the shorter phrases, but are even worse; these comments take longer to read by masking themselves as content. They can also occasionally derail the “speaker” from their main point if the parroted comment is perceived as a request for clarification on a certain point.