Monday, February 18, 2008

27 dresses

It's hardly a secret I'm a big fan of romantic comedies.
"27 dresses", although a bit formulaic, was a very good movie on its own. But I want to comment on it because of the way it handles three very interesting messages. If you haven't seen it, please be forewarned there are spoilers ahead.

* It's alright to help others, as long as you don't neglect yourself.
The main character casually found she had a talent to help brides in the biggest day of their lives. But she didn't make it into her career. Instead, it became an obsession about having a future with the idealised image of her boss. She thought she was in love with him but never told nor hinted him about it.
Inrequited love is tempting and romantic, but in the end it always ends up as a recipe for disaster and misery. Sometimes it's very hard not to fall for it, but please! please remember never to let it thrive so much, it will feed on your own lifeforce.

* Don't spend too much time in idealisation. While reality can be more difficult to deal with, it is also much more rewarding.
What we call "Reality" is just a mental construct built of many different subjectivities to help us (hopefully) understand what is going on around us.
In this context, asking someone not to idealise things or persons sounds like an oxymoron but my intent is to make a difference between the act of collecting subjectivities to create a model and to consciously or subconsciously filtering them to collate something without any apparent flaws.
The main character spent her time wallowing and daydreaming about her object of affection without taking the chance to see how things would actually work. And this takes us to...

* Risks are always part of the game. It's alright though, you either take them or else wonder "what if..." forever.
The main character was in love with her boss, but never had the gut to make him aware of the fact. Sounds familiar?
We all hate it when we decide to take a risk and everything turns belly-side up; sooner or later in life, we've all had this feeling and it sucks bigtime.
However, we also forget the fact that by taking risk, we are also making a choice: See what's up for real once and for all.
And that's what she eventually did. She took a risk and told everything to the boss, who became surprised and even tried to reciprocate by kissing her... only it didn't work. The real version of the boss came out as flat compared to his idealised version, which honestly is always the expected outcome.
Only after the fantasy was over, the main character was capable of reassessing her situation and realise there was a new possibility around that ought to be explored further.

- Conclusions
Well, it's in human nature to idealise. Just don't do it at the expense of avoiding risk. Same with natural talents: if you're not making a living out of them, don't let them become an obsession.

Now, if only I listened to my own advice...

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Why do Mobulas jump?

I'm back with mixed feelings from my trip to Los Cabos, Baja California, Mexico.

For sure, there are things I wish they never happened... but as I said yesterday over the phone to someone I still deeply care for, time may eventually transform all sad memories into good ones. Changing the past is impossible, but there might still be some chance for learning.

While I wait and see if this is true, I intend this post to be only about one of many good memories from my first day there.

* Scenario: The Baja California Peninsula

I won't burden you with the details, which you can check here. For now, I'm concentrating on the southernmost part of the peninsula.

Imagine a sandy desert chaparral complete with vultures, eagles, foxes, bats and hares; mountain chains are common but spaced and the weather is surprisingly mild (at least during the ongoing season). This desert is surrounded by the Sea of Cortes and the Pacific Sea to the east, west and south; intringuingly, it´s not as humid as other places I have visited further up north.

Most beaches are covered with little pebbles more than sand; combine that with strong winds and it is easy to figure out sea waves are not for the inexperienced.

In spite of all this, I am left with a sense of awe.

* Scenario: Almost any beach

Go to a beach on any morning or late afternoon, sit down and wait for a few minutes. You'll see Mobulas jumping out of the sea and back into it, flipping their wings and sometimes even making somersaults as they try to reach for the sky. Sometimes it's just one, at others there are three or more jumping in succesion. Locals call them by the uninspiring names of "Cubanas" or "Tortillas".

First question in mind: Why do they do this?

The short answer: Nobody knows.

Maybe they are getting themselves rid of parasites... or perhaps they are just happy to be alive (compared to other fish, they have very large and complex brains).

Without professional equipment and a good deal of luck, it's quite difficult to capture their exploits on camera. So I'll direct you instead to this site which contains both excellent images and story.

More posts to follow as soon as I can keep recalling memories without sorrow.

Check this out: