In the Second World War many fighter pilots noticed that while they were strafing a target, they had a tendency to aim their own aircraft at the very thing they were shooting at, sometimes with disastrous consequences.
This came to be known as ‘target fixation’. We are all prone to it. As we focus on something, driving for example, our awareness of other obstacles diminishes as you become so fixated, you forget to avoid the very thing you are looking at. Which is why you can find video footage of cars hitting solitary lampposts in deserted car parks on YouTube.
Motorbike riders witness this target fixation phenomena everyday. I should know, I am one, and it is unnerving to watch an oncoming car drift slowly towards you only to veer away at the last moment though I assure you, you do get used to it.
The resolution to this is not to look at the hazard but to look further ahead to where you are going. It is an obvious thing to say but a lot of people don’t do it. On a bend it is better to look at the furthest point of the curve rather than ten feet in front of you, you already know where you are.
Target fixation is weird to see first hand but it does happen, and i hope you get to experience it because it is so fascinating to witness.
One last thing, try applying it to yer life, I do. You already know where you are, so focus further ahead to where you wanna be…….you just never know,
See yer on the bend in the road………………….
Choose yer words wisely,
Don’t Get Too Close…..
There is an old adage that you are never further than six foot away from a rat, most of them rodents.This has been dispelled as it was based on guesstimates and it has been shown that it is probably more realistically around one hundred and sixty feet, nowhere near as exciting a prospect.
However, how far are you ever from the nearest human being?
In a City, Greater London for example, it is probably around one hundred feet which goes some way to explaining why urban life is becoming so intolerable and we’re all slowly going barking mad.
If you commute by public transport and it is packed to the rafters with weird smelly twitchy strangers, researchers have found you begin to treat your fellow travelers as inanimate, as a way of coping with an intrusion that you have no control over.
Personal Space is just that, personal, and hence is highly variable, but in Western culture an average of two feet, or an arms length is considered the norm. While your intimate space, reserved for your partner, family, etc is considered to be around twelve to eighteen inches. Countries such as India and Japan have a far lower expectation of personal space and it is highly likely many Western cities are heading the same way due to over population.
Is there a long term effect to all this?
Quite frankly, no one knows. It has been proven that the Internet is making us all more narcissistic. In the U.S the increase is at least 20% every year and the rest of the world aint that far behind. The ‘look at me’ syndrome does have a knock on effect as it subconsciously increases our expectation of how the public see us. Therefore our ‘right’ to personal space increases. This equation may explain why, for example, when you are walking down the street and the person texting on their phone walking towards you tuts at you not getting out of their way, you are considered the one at fault.
As the human race continues to expand equally we are becoming more insular. We have less need to go out of our front doors. We can bring the world to us via all sorts of devices. This isn’t wrong, it’s called evolution, but it does mean our expectation of personal space is under review.
In the ‘real world’ we can apply our own boundaries on what is personal space but on the web, if you use a cam, the boundaries alter, you, your room, what is in it, all become your personal space, and turning the damn cam off is the only control you have. The same can be said of what is written on a social website, in reality you have little recourse over what goes on.
Personal space is a sliding scale and that’s fine, just make sure it slides in your favour for as long as possible………….. cos it wont be around too much longer….
Choose yer words wisely,
I had a pleasure the whole last week to help out the most amazing French artist, that goes by the name – JR.
JR came to London with his photobooth truck and gave Londoners a chance to participate in Inside Out Project. The portraits were pasted on the terrace of the Somerset House. If you have a spare minute, make sure to head down over there to take a look at those amazing portraits and statements that those people are representing.
If you have missed out on this opportunity – visit http://www.insideoutproject.net/en/participate. And remember:
“Any important subject, any statement, can be strengthened by the INSIDE OUT. The project gives anyone a voice through his or her image.”
Get some people together or do it yourself, for a cause, to state something etc. find a wall or a space and show the world what you stand for.
JR also has a solo exhibition in Lazarides Gallery. It runs until 14th of November, the address and all the details you can find here.
Check out the video from the show opening, made by the guys from Beyonder – JR exhibition in Lazarides.
I was lucky enough to be on the premiere of JR’s movie INSIDE OUT: The People’s Art Project. It is an inspiring piece of work, directed by Alastair Siddons. During some parts I had tears rolled down my cheeks. The movie should be available in a couple of weeks.
Onward and upward,
Like F@*k We Do…
Like it or not we all do it. Some more than others, but it is pretty much guaranteed that you won’t be able to go through a single day without hearing someone swearing. Its constant widespread use nowadays does mean however its effectiveness as a weapon in our individual verbal armoury is becoming eroded. People are becoming immune.
In the medical profession it has been observed that if, say, you bang yer head or hit yer thumb with a hammer, initial pain relief can be had by swearing out loud, but overdoing it lessens the relief. Less, in this case, is obviously more.
Swearing is used as an expression of anger, frustration, and a whole lot more besides, but it seems that while we are all swearing at other road users from the comfort of our cars. Pointing out someones lack of parentage or that perhaps they enjoy a lot of masturbation, we are helping diminish the impact a good swear at something or someone can have. After all, swearing can be fun……
The BBC in its wisdom has compiled a list of swear words that are deemed unacceptable, and yes, ‘c_nt’ is top of the list, even though it could be argued that even this word is beginning to lose its shock value, Ironically, given that the word profanity originally meant ‘outside the temple’ ‘Jesus Christ’ and ‘God’ struggle on to the list at 25 and 28 respectively albeit out of a list of 28! While all manner of sexual insults dominate the list.
The upshot of all this is is that perhaps we should all be a little more discerning about our swearing. Equally maybe we should give some thought as to what words and phrases we use as we cuss. For example, ‘motherf@*ker’ is high up on the list, but think of what it actually infers. If you are the youngest of three children, then, technically, your father is one……
We go to great lengths to filter our television and film content yet find it acceptable to hear it on the street and it is also ironic that this article itself has also chosen not to fully spell the swear words used in a bid to limit any offence.
Bangkok is definitely the strangest city I have ever been to. There is a reason why the song “One night in Bangkok” was titled like this. I kind of felt that one night there would have been enough for me. I have visited Thailand in 2008 and at that time it was one of my first trips (after Hong Kong) outside Europe. During that period there were riots going on in Bangkok and to be honest it did not look as bad as the media were portraying it. There were occasional burned cars but I have not encounter nothing dangerous. I was really surprised by their cultural intensity. The city is as busy as London and New York. So if you are looking to rest Bangkok is definitely not the place. Well, maybe if you want to stay in the hotel by the pool. The main transport from the airport is taxi but in the city tuk tuk (auto rickshaw) or river taxi are the best way to move around. Bangkok has a lot of attractions to offer: temples, palaces, giant reclining Buddha, covered in gold, street food, nightclubs and shopping. I recommend visiting Baiyoke Tower II, the highest skyscraper in Thailand. It offers breathtaking view of the city and the lowest floors are filled with clothes that are produced for export to places like Camden Town. The difference is you can buy them sometimes 10 times cheaper. Onward and upward, Tsaritsa Katarzyna