Monday, April 30, 2012


Cognitive dissonance is experienced when a person become aware of his/her own hypocrisy. In most cases, people will either try to justify the behaviour to match the thinking or vise-versa, depending on what the path of least resistance is.

I have no qualms with cognitive dissonance because I often know how to resolve it. Justification takes effort, yes, but it's easy. Just think about it. The last time you did something against your morals, you felt horrible right? How long did that uneasy feeling last? I'm sure whatever guilt or shame you experienced was diminished quickly, either by behavioural compensation or a set of self-affirming thought procedures. Either way, cognitive dissonance didn't plague you for long because in reality we hate the identity of being a hypocrite.
What's scary about cognitive dissonance is that it can potentially develop into doublethink if one does not arrive at an adequate justification for their incongruent beliefs and actions or willingly accepts the hypocrisy for the sake of easiness. If you've read 1984, you're familiar with that term. The very idea of doublethink sparks in me another explanation for contemporary "social malaise" - the breakdown of moral codes and the alienation of people from each other. Doublethink is partially responsible for a wide range of antisocial behaviours observed in individuals as well as conglomerate groups (ie. corporations). It also accounts for the mind-boggling inhumane acts performed by otherwise an average person (bounded by the basic moral codes). It has the potential to infiltrate even the most just individual but it can be made aware to the person and devolve back into cognitive dissonance. This would be ideal, though uncomfortable, but at least you'd still be able to something about it. And that to me is more important than anything else - being able to still do something.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Book Club

I was having a discussion with Jeremy yesterday about his love/hate relationship with contemporary literature. As an avid reader, he expressed his lament about how the prose in recent fictions are often too "easily digestible" and "mass oriented". Though their subject matters tend to pertain to issues people deal with on a daily basis thus making them very relatable in the sense that the stories could very well be true. He however finds that a great deal of successful contemporary writers (ie. Palanuik and Coupland) stick too much to the "formula of success" by identifying too much with sensationalism and commercialism. To him, he believes that the writings don't delve deep enough into the nature of life and the conditions of humanity. Conversely, he finds classic Russian literature (ie. Tolstoy and Dostoyesky) to be a lot more compelling and realistic. 

I on the other hand am much more appreciative of what writers can do nowadays. Some of my favourite writers are quite popular with the masses precisely because their prose are easy to understand and straight forward. I also find underrated local writers to be especially inspiring (read Salt Fish Girl by Larissa Lai, it's amazing!). Then I realized his problem existed within the confines of modern living. If you ever read classical fictions, and compare them to a book that may live on to one day become a classic piece of work, you'll see just how the struggles of the human race has changed. Books such as Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights have heavy focuses on the oppression, prejudices and general hardship. Whereas books such as Fight Club, and Hey Nostradamus! express the anguish and discontentment of isolation and losses. I'm not saying that modern literature don't deal with what classical fictions deal with but modern literature is "easily digestible" because people are primed to digest issues like that. Intense political struggles and poverty are not as poignant as they would be back in the days and people aren't as ready to live vicariously when they read those things as they would if they were reading about personal mental states and the pressures of living in a highly competitive society. Thus the reason why Jeremy would find old classical literature more compelling is because they deal so intensely with overcoming adversity. Life in the 1900's is fucking hard! In 2012, not so much because nothing really directly threaten our survival (at least not in this part of the world).

Oh hey, I got green and purple ombre (fancy way of saying dip dye) in my hair.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

party time, excellent!

It's been a stressful day. Instead of writing about how shitty the weather has been, I'm going to inundate you with pictures - all three of them. 

Fuck yeah, recursion!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Fitness and Finesse

Everybody knows of change but no one really expects them. I mean that in the most sincere way possible; no cliche.

Being a vegetarian was easy because I had a cause. Also, I was hopeful enough to think that my conscientiousness was going to, on a minuscule scale, save the world. If you had told me, during past the years of me wallowing in my own sense of self-righteousness that I will one day consume flesh again, I would've thrown a fit and tried to shit-kick you in the face for undermining my "martyrdom". Subsequently, I would've also upped the ante and adopted an even more extreme diet (ie. fruitaranism), not so much to prove you wrong, but to prove myself worthy of...something.

The thing about change is that when you're in the middle of it, you don't really feel like anything different really happened. At least for me. When I ate my first piece of lobster one month ago, I didn't feel the same guilt as I usually would've had consumed, even accidentally something laced with animal death. Instead, I justified it and the meat tasted like sustenance should; nourishing, delicious but most importantly, guilt-free. It has been a month since I started eating sea food and I can very well see this change of perception in meat consumption as the beginning of a slippery slope toward full-blown omnivourism. 

Though this change directly threatens my identity, I experience no greater anxiety than usual. Ironically, it is this lack of response that I find more unsettling than anything else. Here I am, a strict vegetarian (a label I was proud to be associated with) for just under 6 years has now included seafood into her diet. This makes me question the real intent behind my vegetarianism and so far, I've only come to realize that perhaps the diet restriction was too much of a compromise or perhaps I for once don't have to justify this to anyone. 

Friday, April 13, 2012

I cook, I clean, I, feminist.

Feminists beware; this one "conforms" to gender stereotypes! 

Honestly, I take pride in the fact that I'm a good cook and I love to clean. I never for once thought it was the result of the unconscious oppression of gender roles. However, as I'm writing this, I'm slowly starting to think that perhaps gender roles do apply to me and I can be unknowingly be influenced by them. As you can see, this has turned a post hoc argument and I'm starting to look for a way out.

So now I ask the question, do women truly suffer if they chose to "conform" so to speak to the gender roles. Can she embody feminism if she enjoys doing everything that is proverbially "feminine?" 

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Brief Interviews with Hideous Men


What baffles me in life is when people forfeit true authenticity in pursuit of anything else but that.  It may not be enough, but it's just about as important as being human. Sometimes it's hard to judge what true authenticity really is. The concept of it gets muddled amidst so many illusions. I find myself asking if I am authentic, or have ever even come close to being so.  

I was read an excerpt from a marvellous novel yesterday called "Brief Interviews with Hideous Men" by David Foster Wallace. In a chapter called "On His Deathbed, Holding Your Hand" the author describes (either in his own voice or in the voice of the character) his hatred and disgust for his infant child. The words in this story were piercing and revealing to me, as was the subject matter it talked about - complete and utter abhor for the basic human condition, the id. The vividly loathing words the father emblazoned his own son paint a clear picture of how easily detestable something so "unhuman"...nay "pre-human" can be. Because being human implies having the ability to reason, perform cognitive processes, to have shame, to have self-control, be self aware and all that is to do with the moving away from being an animal and being controlled by impulses and driven by pleasure. The infant, lacks everything a human should wield in order to exercise autonomy over his instincts. Thus the infant in the story was greedy, ravenous and ceaseless in its demands, hunger and wants. What disgusting nature! 

Bringing it back to what we started off with. Is the infant though, authentic if he lacks everything that is to be learned and indoctrinated throughout the course of his development? Does authenticity = primal/id/infancy? Perhaps not? Perhaps authenticity should've been more clearly defined as something outside of the ugliness of the human's lowly origin - an animal. 

Monday, April 2, 2012


I say Disney Land has outlived its usefulness and appeal to a person when that individual reaches his/her mid 20's. The happiest place on earth rings hollow to someone like me whose favourite place to be is her bedroom. Perhaps it's because the connotations of the bedroom allude to tranquility, safe haven, slumber and many other down-time themed concepts. To me, those things mean so much more than just having a place to rest, they are part of one's inner peace.

And what would a bedroom be if it didn't have a wicked closet...or two?

A matching dresser/bed set is always nice. If your furniture consists of mainly scraps and hand-me-downs, you can achieve having matching sets by applying the same coloured paint. This is what I did. Can you believe that dresser used to be a black filing cabinet?!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

silly face time

This is the face of someone who recently just painted her bedroom furniture and slept to the scent of undried paint. Either that or someone is making a face at her that's really, really funny.

Now that the paint scent molecules have combined with some of her neurotransmitters in the motor cortex of her brain, she's now unable to control her movements and postures. Rendering her unable to stand still instead she's swaying from side to side. Either that or she's just trying to a "dynamic" picture of her outfit.

How is she standing on a slanted floor? Perhaps days of paint-breathing have given her the super power of having extremely having and sticky feet. Either that or her camera was tilted slightly to the left, creating an optical illusion that the floor is slanted but rather the right side is actually further away from the camera than the left side.


This is important: GRANTS NOT LOANS!!!! FTW!