Archive for April 2010
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The one thing I really dislike about facebook is the fact that people join the groups and pages on there just because they can. I do this, I’m a member of some really weird groups on facebook; some of which I can’t remember the name of , or indeed why I joined them in the first place. However, I’ve noticed recently a rather disturbing trend amoungst people I choose to call friends and I can’t bite my tongue any more.
My cousin, Jamie, pointed out a while ago that the trend for groups with names like “nice turban, must have cost you a bomb” or “What are you wearing tonight?” “Oh, I don’t know, probably just a turban.” are becoming more and more popular and I’ve noticed this past week numerous people on my friends list joining them and it makes me angry.
I mean, what the fuck? What’s the point? Do you actually understand the people and the traditions you are insulting? Do you know how many people you are insulting? Peopl who are decent people and who you don’t even know?
I’m not religious; I despise religion, but I won’t openly mock people for belonging to a religion or following a tradition because of that religion unless they do something really bad like covering up peadophilia or trying to exorcise demons out of a person simply because they’re gay.
Another disturbing trend I’ve noted is friends of mine who join groups like “When I was your age if I’d spoken to my parents like that I’d be KNOCKED OUT!”
SO WHAT?! Parents are no longer allowed to legally abuse their childrens human rights. That’s a good thing! There are other ways to discipline people that don’t involve physical violence. Seriously. It’s disturbing to think that some people who I consider good, rational people would think along those lines.
Oh, and WHAT THE HELL is up with all the sexist groups on facebook? A friend of mine just five minutes ago joined a group called ‘All men are lying, cheating scum’ and then another group called ‘I love my fiance, he is my world.’ Like, woah.
Do people even stop and think about the statements they are making by joining these pointless groups? Really?
On the 26th I took part in #boobquake because I thought it was a cheeky, funny idea to help promote the fact that it’s actually pretty common to be skeptical about irrational claims that people make. For an Iranian cleric to state that boobs caused seismic activity was pretty irrational (not to mention laughable) and so when Jen McCreight from Blaghag put forwards the idea of boobquake and people in their masses decided to take part I thought “why not?”
It was harmless fun, and I was quite pleased to see numerous friends of mine who aren’t involved in the skeptical community asking me what it was about and then looking into it further and sharpening their own rational thinking skills. One friend of mine has even discovered skeptics in the pub through the boobquake and so that was really pleasing.
However, the boobquake has come under criticism for being sexist and anti-feminist and, although I can see why people might think that, I really think that people are just overreacting. For one, boobquake was voluntary, two, it was voluntary, and three, it was voluntary.
If somebody is willing to take part in an event in which they have to show a bare arm, a bit of boob etc. then who is anyone to tell them they can’t because it’s oppressing them as free people? I like to think that anyone who refers to themselves as a skeptic is able to make the free choice to take part in an event after summarising whether they feel it is suitable and, I’m pretty sure that nobody was forced to dress down on the 26th by anyone involved with boobquake.
It made me ponder who it was that was being anti-feminist. Jen from Blaghag for encouraging people to question the vile claims that had been made about women, or the cleric who had deemed himself as important enough to tell women exactly how they should dress. I think that the people who decided to take part in boobquake were able to deem for themselves whether or not they felt it was a suitable thing for them to do or not.
Another thought that crossed my mind was that if this large group of female skeptics showing a bit of cleavage was so anti-feminist somebody ought to travel back in time and tell the feminists of years gone by that they shouldn’t be removing their bras in public and pretending to burn them because they’re being anti-feminist. I think that would go down quite well.
Coming up is the one year anniversary of Righteous Indignation and I was going over the past show notes that I have laying around and it took me back to some stories that, at the time, had made me feel angry, sad, helpless, inspired, proud… you get the idea.
That’s why I’ve thrown together this little video. Now, it’s nothing special as I only have Windows movie maker but I made it to outline those things that in my mind have stood out in the past year for me. Stories and things that have touched me in some way. I hope it makes you think as much as it did me. It also contains the most important thing I’ve learnt this past year so you’ll have to watch until the end if you want to see.
Below the video I have listed the stories that the pictures in the video relate to incase you don’t recognise them.
On Saturday 17th April ’10 a small group of us visited the Llandoger Trow in the city of Bristol to spend some time there to see what conclusion we could reach about the supposed haunting there. It wasn’t a full investigation – more of an experience evening for some curious friends. I walked away from the location feeling rather uncomfortable about what we had discovered and I’m not talking about something strange and unexplainable that we witnessed, but rather what we uncovered with regards to the supposed haunting and the effect it has had on the building.
Throughout the time spent there we conducted various vigils (for want of a better word) in various area of the location with nothing out of the ordinary happening. With it being quiet we decided it would be interesting to conduct a ouija board experiment on the second floor. The experiment was a simple one – we all took part in a normal ouija board seance for a while and then I wrote down a word on a piece of paper and placed it on a table away from the others who then asked the ‘spirit’ or whatever it was that was making the planchette move to spell out the word I had written down that nobody had seen.
In the UK we’ve recently been having some wonderful weather which has inspired many to have a spring clean in the hope that it will shift away the winter blues we’ve become so accustomed to of late. However, according to the Daily Mail it might not all be that easy.
Apparently many of us find that despite having a spring clean we still feel gloomy within our own homes. This, they say, could be down to bad energy making our homes sick. Or at least, that’s what Sandra Kendrew says anyway.
She labels the bad energy as three different types:
– geopathic stress which is natural radiation and is distorted by underground water, quarrying, minerals, fault lines and construction (which coincidentally is what is said to disturb ghosts, coincidence?)
– Geomagnetic stress which is caused by electro-magneitc pollution from nearby pylons, sub-stations and radiation in the home, such as a ‘ disruptive’ WiFi connection. 
– and, Geopsychic stress which is the lingering emotional energy created by previous occupants and the property’s current owners.Or ghosts.
We all have that one person that we know of who annoys us slightly, or who we don’t get on with and don’t have anything to do with. I have a few people like that who are involved in paranormal research who I stay well clear of. However, today, I recieved an email from an old friend of mine about an interview a Wiltshire based paranormal celebrity did about a ‘gay ghost hunt’ he is hosting with the Fright Nights company.
I don’t know what sexual preference has to do with paranormal research, but there we go.
My friend said “Don’t have any food or drink in your mouth and scroll down to question 8.” So I did. In it, Ray, the person I don’t get on with (long story, we don’t see eye to eye but used to be friends blah, blah, blah) is asked:
it’s [the gay ghost hunt] a really good idea, I mean they have gay days at the zoo, why not have gay nights of ghost hunting!
Exactly and I think we’ve captured a really good market because I believe that gay and lesbian people are slightly more sensitive than straight people and I believe that sensitivity might heighten their investigation. I’ve got this theory it’s really weird, it’s just something that crossed my mind, maybe gay and lesbian people are quite sensitive and maybe because they’ve got that sensitivity they might pick up spirit a bit more and they might get a bit more experience than say a straight person who isn’t that sensitive. I don’t know it’s a theory, it’s something that I’m investigating and I’m working on right now.
– “ believe that gay and lesbian people are slightly more sensitive than straight people and I believe that sensitivity might heighten their investigation.” O_O
– “maybe gay and lesbian people are quite sensitive and maybe because they’ve got that sensitivity they might pick up spirit a bit more and they might get a bit more experience than say a straight person who isn’t that sensitive.” O_O
Is it honestly, seriously me that thinks that’s bad shit crazy money making propaganda?
I would wonder what Ray would have to say about the medium/psychic/whatever he manages who is known as “the youngest female psychic in the UK” who is straight. Is he saying that because she is straight she “isn’t that sensetive”?
I don’t like to get into “tit for tat” bitchy comments, but for the love of whatever you believe in, make your frickin’ mind up, dude!