Thursday, February 22, 2007

How light?

Just something to think about the next time you're having breakfast.

Why does the cereal box of Sanitarium Light 'N' Tasty feel so heavy?

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Getting Things Halfway Done

I'm reading a book at the moment, "How to Get Things Done" by David Allen. Now that is not it's original name. It's generally known as "Getting Things Done", but for some reason, the title was changed for the Australian, and possibly other, markets. Australia was the only one I noticed on Amazon though. All the references in the book have been changed from Getting Things Done to How to Get Things Done.

I have no idea why they changed it, but if they've gone to all the trouble of doing so because of perceived cultural differences between Australians and American, why didn't they change the spelling of, for instance, "organize" to "organise" throughout?

I have no problem with them renaming this book, but it's like they've stopped short.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

How people deal with being "stood up"

Today I did my occasional lunchtime thing, and went to the Sporters Bar at the Menzies Hotel with a magazine. Happily I sat down on my own, with peace and quiet, had a (light) beer and patiently waited for my Vegeburger to turn up.

[Aside: Please don't tell anyone about the Menzies. At lunch it is almost always quiet and unpopulated, smoke-free and friendly staff. Let's just keep it our little secret, shall we.]

Moments after I sat down, a bloke sat down with a glass of white wine and a cola-mixer drink, scotch-and-coke or something like that. It obviously wasn't just straight coke, as it had the tell-tale froth on top. He immediately tucked into the white and put the other drink in front of the seat next to him. Then he took out his phone and rang up someone. I wasn't able (and frankly didn't want) to hear his conversation.

On putting the phone down a short time later, he also put down his wine, picked up the other drink and downed it in three or four quick gulps. He put down the now empty glass and picked the wine up again and similarly finished that in under a minute.

Well, I thought, he obviously was supposed to meet someone, they cancelled at the last minute, and he now has to get on his trap and pony and go. But no, he returned to the bar and bought another white wine and returned, not to the same table, but to a separate table. Once again, he downed his wine in less than a minute, and this time upon finishing, left for good.

My oh my, it must've been an important meeting.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Free Will

I am an avid reader of New Scientist magazine, and they recently did an article or two on Free Will versus Determinism. It's the sort of topic that's guaranteed to drain your zest for life, regardless of whether you believe that life is basically pretty random, or whether it's all fate and pre-determined, or even a scary combination of the two.

Personally, my philosophy of all this is that it is not the sort of question that we are ever likely, or even really want, to solve. Let's just get on with enjoying this gift called life.

The letters to the editor have been flowing thick and fast on this topic. In a recent issue of the magazine, a cartoonist has drawn a person looking at a sign:

"Ministry of Free Will"

Brilliant. Oh come on I shouldn't have to explain it to you.