My FaceBook Persona is not Me.

Listening to Prof. Bibo White talk on the future of social networking, where FaceBook leads the way with over 400 million members, actually making it the 3rd largest country in the world (in terms of population); I started thinking how my FaceBook account has taken over my life.

Every morning, I open FaceBook before my office email. I run TweekDeck; which allows me to update FaceBook and Twitter; without the need to visit the websites and browse through the status updates sof my friends. Yup, I am part of the FaceBook nation but how much of what I put on FaceBook really represents me?

FaceBook is my online persona, and it may or may not be true to who I am. I can safely hide behind a digital mask and none would be the wiser to me. And I am beginning to catch myself telling people I meet to search me on FaceBook. I don’t carry name-cards anymore, choosing instead to ask people to Google my name and it will lead them to my blog.

But FaceBook is not me. It represents me, yet it is not me. It doesn’t capture me as a person. Instead, you read what I want you to read. And I can make up whatever I want you to read. I can be a hard-convict in prison and online, I can make myself to be the granny that lives next door you to you.

And looking at my FaceBook account, I have almost 500 friends yet in everyday life, I tend to talk to only 3 people. And these 3 people know me as I am, not the FaceBook persona but me as a human being.

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Emo-centric writer at heart.

My friends laugh cause I take up my day, listening to “emo-songs” and posting my findings on FaceBook. It helps my writing. Stephen King listens to heavy metal when he writes and Mitch Albom plays in a band. Writers express themselves through their writings but draw strength and inspiration from the things they love. For me, it’s emotional Indonesian or Korean love songs. I love the music videos that accompany these songs cause it tells the story and they are great sources for stories.

What these songs do is generate the “What if?” questions and these questions spark the quest for an answer and the telling of a story. Stories and plots can be driven by the quest for an answer and I see this pattern in Paulo Coelho’s books.

So it could be horror movies, baking cakes, eating burgers by the roadside or just listening to big-band music. If it’s inspires you to write the stories you enjoy writing, so be it. Whatever that inspires you to write use it to your advantage and make it your strength.

Happy writing!

I don’t want to look back in time.

They say this is the time to look back and look forward and we all hear the same thing each year or we may even wish the same as we did the previous year. Mistakes would not be repeated and we would do better the coming year. We make that solemn promise to ourselves, we won’t make the same mistakes twice but somehow “never” should never be spoken. We draw up a list of things to do and not to do and we wishfully hope 2010 would be the year things would be different.

Maybe it would, or maybe it would not.

Who knows? We can’t tell the future. And we make the best decisions based on the best and most current information we have at this moment in time. So in fact no decision is a bad decision. Only with hind-sight do we determined based on some form of measure, which is bad and which was good. So can we truly say 2009 was a bad year or not? What may have been a bad choice could lead to a good situation in 2010. We never know.

I am saying this as my friends start wishing each other Happy New Year on Face Book. I am an ass when I start thinking, and I’m treating this day like any other year. And I won’t be promising myself anything neither am I expecting much either.

If you step back and look at days and time and years, EVERY 24 hours we live is the same in terms of measured time. The sun rises and the sun sets.

We (humans that is) invented a form of measurement to quantify and divide time in units we can easily refer too. So today is the 31st of December 2009, and tomorrow is the 1st day of 2010. But what if every month had 40 days? Or 60 days? Or what if we lived in 12 hour days? Then 2010 would have been upon us in half the time.

I don’t want to look back at 2009 because it would mean I have to look back all the way in my own remembered history. 2009 should be looked at in reference to 2008 and so on so forth. And looking forward to 2010, can I safely say I won’t make the same mistakes? After all we humans are creatures of habits.

So don’t live in the past, neither don’t fantasize for the future. Live the NOW and savour every moment lived. Time would move relevant to how you perceive it. You want it to move fast, it would move fast. You want time to move slowly, it will move slowly. Time is relevant to the position of the observer, who stands looking at his watch moving clockwise. Ironically, even if our watches moved anti-clockwise, time would remain the same.

Every minute is a 60 second pulse and every second is a 100 mini-second pulse. So if your clock tick backwards it would still be the same as those ticking forward.

So for tomorrow, I want to create something new. Regardless, if its the new year or not; I choose to create something new. To add to the excitement of a changing universe. To introduce something that would find its place in time and be remembered by those that share the same space with it. I want to add to the jumble of created instances we have crowding our existence.

How do I do that?

By doing what I do best. Writing. Composing. Seeking the story that needs to be told. Adding to the body of stories people carry stored in their minds.

For that, I want to experience life. Each day as if it was my last. To live with urgency. To live as if life dependent on it. To not be afraid to take part in the trickery of life, and be able to say at the end of it.

“I lived my life.”

Dokkodo – The Path of Aloneness

Dokkodo – “The Path of Aloneness” or “The Way to be Followed Alone” by Miyamoto Musashi (1645)
  1. Accept everything just the way it is.
  2. Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.
  3. Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.
  4. Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.
  5. Be detached from desire your whole life long.
  6. Do not regret what you have done.
  7. Never be jealous.
  8. Never let yourself be saddened by a separation.
  9. Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself nor others.
  10. Do not let yourself be guided by the feeling of lust or love.
  11. In all things have no preferences.
  12. Be indifferent to where you live.
  13. Do not pursue the taste of good food.
  14. Do not hold on to possessions you no longer need.
  15. Do not act following customary beliefs.
  16. Do not collect weapons or practice with weapons beyond what is useful.
  17. Do not fear death.
  18. Do not seek to possess either goods or fiefs for your old age.
  19. Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help.
  20. You may abandon your own body but you must preserve your honour.
  21. Never stray from the Way.