Elements of Appeal

Posted February 28, 2007 by rsvpasap
Categories: Random thoughts

The elements of appeal of a book refer to things like, pacing, characterisation, frame, storyline etc.
Welcome to my “elements of appeal” as applied to other humans!

Sexual appeal: This covers physical appearance/attraction and sexual desirability and compatibility
Emotional appeal: This covers personality and emotional attraction, where you feel connected to the person even though you cannot articulate what this connection is
Intellectual appeal: This covers intellectual compatibility and the ability to stimulate each other on an intellectual level

These factors are sometimes correlated, eg I feel I need EA and IA to generate SA but for others they could standalone. Actually I think for me it’s the SA or at least a non-negative SA that would enable the EA and IA to develop, quite hard to imagine talking with someone you find repulsive. And the EA and IA developed would lead to more SA!

YAY! ;p


Ideas about creativity

Posted February 23, 2007 by rsvpasap
Categories: Random thoughts

I think creativity starts with the belief/realisation and acceptance that one is unique or somehow different.

This leads to questioning norms or mainstream thingys and thus enables a person to see alternatives. Creativity is also about change, because creation is a change of state, from not being to being, from random thoughts to ideas, from ideas to objects.

Of course, there are many roadblocks to creativity. Like fear, fear of being different, fear of rejection, fear of persecution, fear of the unknown…

Or large bureaucracies, where individuals are categorised according to their position in the hierarchy and there are a multitude of workflows, processes, job descriptions etc to navigate through. This makes it difficult for change to happen, staff are tied up with the navigation and develop a comfort zone of influence that makes them stagnate. There’s also the crab in a basket syndrome within these organisations, where co-workers may prevent someone from “escaping the basket” and the end result is everyone just stays in the basket.

Or evil parents who do not allow their kids to read speculative fiction like SF or fantasy because they think such books encourage daydreaming, or worse the kids will emulate the stories and fail in their compositions. Then when they grow up, these ex-kids may spend thousands of dollars on workshops, seminars and whatnot, just to get themselves to be able to imagine “what if”.

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“If your library is not ‘unsafe’, it probably isn’t doing its job.” Library Journal (1999)

Posted February 21, 2007 by rsvpasap
Categories: Read or Die

Title quote from: Forbidden Library
Currently reading: Blankets by Craig Thompson

On Pg 551: On my first visit to the public library, I was like a kid at a candy store where all the candy was free.

This book had been taken off the shelves of our public library just because of a complaint (i think). The reason was “some nudity and sex”. Oh the poor children/teens who will have their minds tainted by such a “comic book”.
This pisses me off. Blankets is a great read, which really captures the coming of age theme very well. It’s intelligent and touching. It makes me sad that people can be so narrow-minded and reactionary. It makes me sadder that our public libraries give in to such people. I think the day when I realise that I can’t change the organisation, will be the day I have to leave. And lately I have been feeling discouraged…

Anyway, back to the book. Blankets is a autobiographical graphic novel which describes growing up in a religious household in Wisconsin. It’s the life story of a boy who has to deal with red-neck bullies (stupid people are universal), the guilt/hypocrisy/repression of religious fundamentalism and self-acceptance. Particularly touching are the parts about the author’s first love and their relationship. It’s not mushy and there isn’t a happy ending but there’s something real and bittersweet about it that makes me, someone from a totally different part of the world, identify with it.

The book isn’t banned in Singapore and it’s easily available at the book chains like Kino but as I said, the fact that we aren’t allowed to have it in the public libraries pisses me off. Alas, I am but a small fry in a large pan. Grr.

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The curse of the golden pig

Posted February 19, 2007 by rsvpasap
Categories: Happened

It’s Chinese New Year in this part of the world.

Things to be happy about:
Ang Pows ($$$)
Tasties (for this year’s home-cooked reunion dinner, the highlights were: “Loh Kai Yik“, which is supposed to be a Cantonese dish, but none of us is Cantonese & our perennial fav “Buah Keluak“.)

Annoying things:
Everything’s closed!
Making small talk with the relatives

Quirky things:
I have not eaten any Bak Kwa so far
One of my teenage cousins set off my gaydar



Posted February 17, 2007 by rsvpasap
Categories: Who, Me?

I like spying, not in terms of visual gratification but in terms of knowing something that’s only privvy to a certain person(s). I am a text-based spy, I examine words, documents and intepret their meaning rather than look at images or actions. I am not a voyeur. Most of the time I would rather the people involved do not know there’s someone watching but sometimes I’d like certain people to know that I care. Alas, that’s a surefire way of being seen as a perverse stalker.

One of the things about the internet is that you never know what traces remain. You may think that nobody will find that ancient thing you wrote but it’s still out there somewhere. Memorised by some machine, an image burned into a screen.

If you want to keep a secret, never write it down.

remembering who

Posted February 17, 2007 by rsvpasap
Categories: Who, Me?

I am a librarian or at least that’s what it says on my namecard. I do not shelve books, not usually.

I have not gotten my Masters in Library Science so I guess that makes me technically, not a professional librarian.

My first degree was in engineering (civil), I lost interest in it after a year and scraped through with a dismal second lower honours.

My previous job(s) were mainly theatre and events-related.

I live on the 19th floor although I’m afraid of heights. I think about death at least twice a day whilst taking the lift.

I like reading but I haven’t read many of the great books, those that always get featured in top 100 listings or books you must read before you die lists.

I love cats and I’m not quite sure why.

Unfortunately, my cat mate (the cat who lives with me) doesn’t seem to like me much. She prefers the bosom of my landlandy. 

I used to write more often and then I stopped. This blog is my attempt to get started again.

I prefer milk chocolate to dark. I find it more comforting.

I have to have at least 2 cups of coffee a day, doesn’t matter whether it’s 3-in-1, kopitiam-type, expresso etc.

I used to game a lot more, but I was more of a solitary gamer: console RPGs were my passion.

My first encounter with online gaming was DOOM, which was pretty straightforward, alas I could never get the hang of the more technically advanced games like Counterstrike.

I like beer, and prefer European beers. I also like whisky and rum. But I can’t take tequila due to an unfortunate puking event many years ago. I am ambivalent about vodka and gin. I prefer red wines over whites. I dislike overly fruity cocktails and usually choose: Mint Julep, Manhattan, Brandy Alexander, Lychee Martini.

It seems I am quite the alcoholic.

I don’t smoke.

I like salty foods, like cheese, ham, bacon, sausages etc. But not so much preserved vegetables.

I don’t like Indian food very much, especially the vegetarian type. But I love Japanese and I like eating raw food: sashimi, sushi, tartare… However, I doubt I would enjoy live food, like octopus which still squirms in your mouth.

I don’t like shopping much, if I see something I like I’ll usually buy it if it isn’t gonna send me spiralling into poverty. However, when buying gadgets I do read reviews and scout around abit more. 

I am messy and I hoard things.

I like being alone but sometime I fear loneliness.

I like being around people but it makes me tired.

I don’t believe that people are inherently good or evil but rather have the ability to choose.

I do believe that humans as a species are generally stupid, because we often think we’re smarter than other living things.

I think that adults are dumber than kids because most do not attain the wisdom that’s supposed to come with age, rather  they become overly set in their beliefs and viewpoints and pass this off as wisdom and maturity and whatnot.

I don’t want people to respect me because of my age. I also do not want people to disrespect me because I don’t look or put up an appropriate act for my age.

I don’t think I’ll ever grow up. My body, however, would probably disagree.

I am looking for a connection and I don’t know where to find it.