Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Heat Headache and Generally Too Hot to Do Things

I've got lots of work to catch up on but the damned heat, ugh, my head, the heat headache, arrggghhh. It's not meant to be like this in England.

I'm finding myself more and more these days resorting to classic autistic coping mechanisms like rocking from foot to foot or saying odd gibberish things and groaning noises. I used to do these sort of things less, I think. Perhaps the autism is combining with senility? Probably not. If it were I suppose I wouldn't be writing coherently about it. Anyhoo...

Alby emailed to tell me Bob Ostertag has put all his music up on for free download. This is very good news. (Well, actually it isn't news because the free downloads have been on Bob's site for quite while but it's news to me because I am notoriously slow on the uptake).

Thank goodness it's nighttime now and the heat has died down.

Alby posted a note, which reached me by email, agreeing with some of my concerns about television and saying, on the subject of the insidious mobile cell, "I have a strong aversion to mobile phones. They encourage rudeness - people too busy yakking meaninglessly to say 'please' and 'thank you' to shop assistants, or who will cut dead realconversations as soon as their mobile blares out its annoying ringtone. They promote stupid behaviour - on numerous occasions I've been walked into by people whose eyes are fixed to their text messaging or whose brains have been disengaged by a rivetting conversation about nothing much at all. And putting cameras in the damned things was a serious social error! People tend to be incredulousl when they find out that I don't have a mobile. 'What if someone wants to contact you?' Well, there is the telephone, Royal Mail, e-mail, a door they can knock on... And if I need to contact anyone while I'm out and about I will look for a payphone. My real complaint is that mobile phone ownership is a form of enslavement. It means that the owner is ALWAYS available, never alone, and open to unsubtle pressure to keep the damned thing switched on. (A colleague was given a mobile phone by his daughter - ever since she's done nothing but phone him to cadge lifts and get him to run errands for her.) It's the death of privacy. Plus it's yet another way we can be tracked, monitored and kept in check by the unscrupuluis scumbags who govern us. I will never have one."

I tried a mobile phone once, just so I would know the basic 'ins and outs' of it. I knew I would lose it, because I am the sort of person who loses small objects, such as pens, keys, books, on a regular basis. Inevitably I lost the phone after a mere three months of ownership and immediately made sure the number and sim card were cancelled by the phone company. It was such a relief!! I didn't have to worry about losing it anymore.

The mobile cell is the realisation of Jeremy Bentham's 'Panopticon' idea. Quote from Wikipedia (there's irony for ya):

'The Panopticon is a type of prison building designed by English philosopher and social theorist Jeremy Bentham in 1785. The concept of the design is to allow an observer to observe (-opticon) all (pan-) prisoners without the incarcerated being able to tell whether they are being watched, thereby conveying what one architect has called the "sentiment of an invisible omniscience."[1]

Bentham himself described the Panopticon as "a new mode of obtaining power of mind over mind, in a quantity hitherto without example."'

The finesse of the mobile cell idea is to get people to carry them of their own free will, because they want to be in fashion.


  1. Dontcha tell me about the heat, I gotta walk in the sun to go to work in a few hours.

  2. Yeah, sorry. I can't even imagine what it's like down southwards in Europe at the moment.