Flow

Good evening all, it’s nice to be back in the flow of things. Or is it?

Continuing with the current theme of social interactions and the unspoken reality of a hive mind this week, I found myself in an environment where my theories could be applied and actually made some kind of sense.

Saturday night beckoned, and since its been a while, how could I resist? A few drinks in and the music grew louder, the floor bulging with bodies. Party in full flow. Observation is key, patterns started to emerge, fully revealing the ‘hive mind’ of the club.

Pathways to doors, the bar, toilets and exits, all became apparent, revealing themselves in full. It was quite interesting to stand there and watch as it all just worked. Of course, obstructions are an issue, as with any densely populated space, but the pathways most followed open and close at will. However, these pathways become established, and so the idea of a ‘hive mind’ plays its part. No matter how much the crowd shifts, and people move, the pathways stay the same. I found myself caught up amongst it myself however.

As I watched, it was evident that there was, or must have been, some kind of collective thinking working. Despite the varying levels of intoxication in the ‘participants’, the ways in which people moved through the crowd did not deviate from the observed routes.

The route to the smoking area courtyard went through the right of the mass, still encapsulated but ordered through it. The exit route from there also followed the same pathway.

The route to the bar from the smoking area followed the same path, taking a left turn once emerged at the back wall. Sensibly, the entrance to the bar area route followed the back wall all the way along.

Surprisingly, movement in a club just works, without intervention or thought. Could it possibly be a subconscious process? That would assume that you can’t get your subconscious hammered, so perhaps not. But there certainly is some other force at play here.

But please, if you are going out clubbing and you happen to spot these pathways, don’t become an obstacle. Stay within the mass if you can, or as close to it as possible. I’ve seen and been part of isolated groups and its not the best experience when you have multiple people trying to get past you. Its most obvious when you end up with at least a two foot gap between isolation and the mass. Block multiple pathways and you’re in for an annoying experience.

Hopefully that won’t happen again. Or am I really over thinking this?

You be the judge.

 

JuzzTF

 

 

The Importance of Being – Reprise

It’s about time I took a step back from the world. Try looking at things from a new angle. Again. A whole two years have past since my last morbidly emotional post. I don’t think its time for another. Never again.

Life has improved, but the world hasn’t really changed. The Conservatives still control the country, much to my displeasure, and life isn’t exactly getting any easier. But that shouldn’t stop me from giving everything I have to making something of myself. Should it?

No. Not in the slightest.

I think a little perspective on life is certainly key in this era. What with the virus within all of us that I like to call ‘Social Media’. Let’s break down that name though.

Social – By definition it is “relating to society or its organisation”

Could it be said that the global trends in social media accurately depict the growing trends in the way the minds of the population work? Is Facebook the platform for what you might call ‘a hive mind’. I can appreciate, a hive mind tends to have order, a common direction to one goal, so I guess my analogy may be a little inaccurate, but then perhaps a global platform for multiple hive minds, or as Facebook would have it ‘Groups’. Are the true groups on Facebook those which are unspoken and undocumented? I would tend to believe so.

However, what I see on Facebook, most days, doesn’t leave me with the greatest hope for the future. I have a feeling this will turn into a rant at some point..

The News Feed – Not that you can call it News, more like targeted advertising and a multitude of shares. That seems to be all people do today, share stuff. Has humanity lost free will, and creativity? Original content seems to be left to people who are paid to do it now. Sure, if you like something, share it. But when I see people’s profiles full of shared content, it makes me wonder about their creativity. You drink, you sleep, you eat, you post photos of yourself on a night out, which just happen to be like for like with everyone else’s photos of them doing the same thing, and you share everything you see on Facebook that appeals to you. Could this be the 21st century virus, hiding in plain sight? Obsessive Sharing?

Then comes the tidal wave of targeted advertising. Those devious companies, picking away at the scraps of your internet history, and tapping into decisions. No longer do you have to go out and find solutions for certain elements of your life. They come to you. But should they? Again, isn’t this fundamentally taking away our creativity, to think for ourselves and find solutions? Even to the point now where you can get recipe boxes delivered to you. Food, already measured for you, all together. Expensive to say the least; but how do you put a price on convenience? Can someone tell me what was wrong with a recipe book, and walking down to the shop and buy the ingredients you needed? Or better yet, experimenting? We make a lot more decisions based on what we see than what we discover. Could it be that our very element of free will is being twisted and mutilated by cleverly placed advertisements? True consumerism laid bare, through a screen.

Share. Like. Comment. Subscribe.

Four little words that seem to have a lot more control than people really appreciate.

I talk about a decline in society among friends and co-workers, little slices of everyday life that I see or hear about which doesn’t give me too much hope. Stories of school children at 13-14 years old, making profit out of selling imported tobacco and cigarettes. Last I heard, pocket money came from working around the house. I can complain about it all I wish, but at the end of the day, can anything be done about it?

Possibly. Given the right tools and impetus. But change requires reform, reform requires strategy, strategy requires leadership, and leadership requires support. Support from which the reform would apply to. So how do you win? I’m not sure than winning is the case. You can’t exactly ban sharing, and neither can you ban targeted advertising. It would be incredibly difficult to tell people to ‘make their lives more difficult’ and go find things out themselves. We have grown so accustomed to having all the information we need handed to us so easily that its no longer considered lazy?

Could we therefore say that there is a case for a whole lot of definitions for words to change drastically.

Yes? Yes there is.

 

JuzzTF

 

When in Aquae Sulis….. / Anniversary

Back again for more I hear you cry?

Yes, yes I am, especially for this anniversary!

3 Years today, its taken its toll. Its hard to think, actually, that we have been blogging here for 3 whole years now, seems like no time at all. I can remember back to the first blog I ever did, back when in 2010.

Taking a running jump at life…

A link to our first ever blog. Enjoy.

 

Also, had a lovely day in Bath yesterday, some great people, great music. I have a new favourite in the form of Hang Massive. Two guys playing the hang (Swiss designed inside out steel pan)

Fantastic music guys!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xk3BvNLeNgw

 

 

 

Peace

 

JuzzTF

Eurovision Part 3 – 2013 – Malmö does it in style.

Well, Im back, after a good many months, I felt my duty to post my regular moan at Eurovision and how it’s just a massive sham and politically swung, but I was certain to hold my judgement this year.

Malmö has played it all brilliantly this year. A fantastic venue, brilliant visuals, great acts from countries that are usually underrated and a few pretty duff entries from previously awesome countries. I think I have become a little less cynical than last year, but I’m sure there will still be some political votes.

So, shall we get on with the analysis.

San Marino – 8 to France : Relatively close in proximity, similar languages.

Sweden – 10 to Denmark : Scandinavia, what did you expect?

– 12 to Norway : Again, Scandinavia, it was obvious, they’re neighbours.

Albania – 10 to Greece : They’re neighbours, it makes sense to keep the borders happy.

Netherlands – 12 to Belgium : “Love only for Neighbours”, not my words, theirs.

Austria – 10 to Italy : close proximity in Europe, and again they’re neighbours.

Serbia – 10 to Ukraine : Close proximity eastern block countries.

Ukraine – 8 to Moldova : Keeping the borders happy again.

– 12 to Belarus : Hmmm, neighbours eh? Must vote for them.

Romania – 12 to Moldova : Neighbours stick together, again. Do I blame them? No.

Azerbaijan – 10 to Georgia : Another border shared, more votes shared.

Norway – 12 to Sweden : Not as bad, major points to neighbours but no more to the rest of Scandinavia.

Armenia – 10 to Georgia : Borders think alike? Seems to be a trend. No love for Azerbaijan though. I wonder why, hah.

Finland – 12 to Norway, What a surprise to see, but no love for Sweden? What happened?

Spain – 12 to Italy, Bit of an odd one, but both are in financial crises, best stick together.

Belarus – 8 to Russia : No surprise there.

– 12 to Ukraine : Do I have to repeat myself?

Latvia – 10 to Estonia : Estonia were terrible this year, and the majority of votes saw that, all but this one.

– 12 to Russia : I really don’t have to repeat myself.

This was half way and I, personally, was very surprised with the outcome of the voting so far. Usually I would have picked apart all of the votes and most countries would have had 2-3 potentially swung votes yet this year seems pretty clean, I hadn’t yet found a single country that put its top 3 votes to related, bordering or close countries yet. Azerbaijan and Denmark were well away in the lead, and I had come to the conclusion that Azerbaijan just made a good song this year, and the same with Denmark. Personally, I didn’t like the Danish entry but I will reserve my judgement.

The votes so far showed me that for once the UK had not voted with bias, and neither Hungary nor Italy had been even slightly biased.

Shall we continue?

Bulgaria – 10 to Ukraine : Close eastern block countries. Need I say more?

Belgium – 12 to The Netherlands : Just reciprocating the love.

Russia – 12 to Azerbaijan : A shared border and Im pretty sure they are close countries.

Malta – 8 to Italy : Just across the water really, closest country for Malta is Italy.

Estonia – 10 to Ukraine : Both share a border with the 12 point winner, Eastern Block.

– 12 to Russia : Need I say more, they are its only other border, other than Lithuania.

Germany – 10 to Denmark : Really doesn’t need explaining, it was a good song, but they do share a border.

– 12 To Hungary : Hungary didn’t exactly blow me away, they’re pretty close too.

Iceland – 10 to Norway : Scandinavia.

– 12 to Denmark : As above.

France – 10 to Italy : Border shared, language ties, culture ties.

Denmark – 8 to Sweden : What a surprise. Brown-nosing is a easy to spot thing.

– 12 to Norway : As above, again.

Montenegro – 8 to Greece : I think I might have been to harsh with this one, they are close, but not massively close.

Georgia – 10 to Armenia : No surprise there.

– 12 to Azerbaijan : Again, no surprises. They are isolated in Europe, they stick together.

Cyprus – 12 to Greece : Need I explain this one?

Croatia – 8 to Italy : Close countries, only a small area of Slovenia separates them.

Switzerland – 10 to Hungary : Close-ish countries. Maybe not so biased.

– 12 to Italy : *sigh* Oh well, how more obvious could you get.

Actually now, looking back on this, it was a pretty fair competition, I think a lot of Europe went against just voting for neighbours and went with their hearts. There was some fantastic music this year and my congratulations go to the city of Malmö for organising and putting on one of the best shows of the European Music Calendar. It truly was a fantastic night, well done to all the performers and special Congratulations to Denmark, our winners of 2013. You deserved it!

Emmelie-de-Forest-of-Denmark-Wins-1897870

This is JuzzTF, signing off.

(For another 6 months, hah)

Peace.

4 Month Catchup

Good evening all!

My sincerest apologies. I haven’t blogged in over 4 months for which I do apologise.

Its been a hectic 4 months mind you!

 

So what has been happening?

 

November – A bit of catching up with old friends but mainly work. Lots of work. The build up to Christmas was particularly hectic to say the least so at least I had been busy. Just wish I got myself a little more time off! But never mind, I seem to have gotten through it ok.

I had no such luck with the bike theft in the end. It appears to have gone forever….

 

December – More Christmas run-up. Again, a bloody hectic time but all round it went pretty quick. I proceeded more with the compensation claim against the woman off my bike which was going smoothly. Other than that, not a lot. It was just a work filled month. Had a good christmas overall. Nice Christmas Party with work too, pretty awesome all round. 

 

January – Sales, sales and more sales. Seems like they didn’t end. But it was nice to continue the busyness at work through for another month, made time fly. Again, not a lot to report, a pretty average month by most standards. I guess. Again, just keeping tabs on the bike accident. All going well.

 

February- What a turn around. I got a pay out for the bike accident! £1400. That’ll pay off my credit card! Other than that, bonus from work will be announced pretty soon and that will pay off the debts too. Turns out I’ll be debt free by the end of March. No more bank charges and no more letters. Its an awesome outlook for the rest of the year!

 

So there we go, all summarised for you.

 

Hope your last four months have been equally awesome 🙂 

 

You’ll be seeing more regular blogs from me now, hopefully. Perhaps an odd post from Rob, but I have mainly taken the blog on myself now.

Onwards and Upwards!

 

JuzzTF

What happened to the Newbury that I used to know?

It has come to my attention that my home town has been lost.

No, not disappeared off the map. Its still there…

Here is it (photo courtesy of Google)

So much time has past since I was a child, I remember when my mother used to work at Boots and we would go and visit her on the weekends with dad. Newbury used to be a calm, peaceful and ultimately safe place to be.

Or so I remember.

Over the years, things have gotten much worse.

Victoria Park has mostly been taken over by youths, mouthing off, littering, starting fights, generally just being completely brainless. The bandstand is one of their ‘strongholds’. Captured by the ‘trackie-wearing’ variety, smoking, drinking in public. The Police just walk by, powerless. They don’t to get involved, they know what happens. It just leaves us all living in fear that just looking at them the wrong way might provoke a unintelligible lexical nightmare and most likely a fist to the face.

We can’t compete. I know all too well about this. I had my bike stolen on Thursday night. Most likely by one of these types. Police were called and they did their investigations, but nothing. Just so happened that all the 7-8 CCTV cameras in the area were pointing the wrong way or were not in operation. How can you have such a massive blind spot?! It’s completely unheard of. It makes me worry that no-one is really safe, even with CCTV. Its not a comfort at all.

But back on topic, these youths. I mean, I say youths but I think some of them are as old as 22.

(Me being 21, you could say I am also a youth, but I would never associate myself with these type of people.)

I worry about the safety of myself and the safety of others. We’re defenceless, unable to fight back.

 

Until now.

I am fed up of they way they think they run the place, spitting, drinking, doing what they like without reprimand. Their time is over. After all, I have plenty of time on my hands. I’m going to start trying to record any anti-social behaviour, then publish it. Let the world see what our town has fallen to. Maybe then the Police/Council will do something about it. Maybe they wont. Then its down to us, the public. Take it upon ourselves to do something. I will, I’ll wait for you to join me.

Maybe if we start something off, the police will take notice. Citizens arrests, etc. Tonight, I’m going to wait outside the park, see if someone rides past on my bike. They’d better watch their back.

I guess that would be my only complaint.

Newbury is still suffering. Parkway Shopping Centre is failing. I’m slowly running out of patience with the town. If no-one does anything to save it, I will.

Watch this space.

 

JuzzTF