2012年10月5日 星期五

Having nothing to do?

Today, I have a particular strong thought about the phrase ‘having nothing to do’ or what we say ‘無聊’ in Chinese. I keep thinking the question ‘do we really have any time that we have nothing to do?’ or we just do not want to do what we have to do or things that we have to do?

After having some thought, I realize that the answer is we do not want to do anything at all sometimes. But the reality is – we sometimes try to convince ourselves that we have nothing to do and to allow ourselves to waste our time for granted. Then, we end up wasting a lot of time doing things for no purposes such as browsing Facebook hundreds of time (like in a minute or so) in a day, lying on sofa playing mobile phone, or even sleeping.

So, I try not to make myself saying I have nothing to do. Instead, I try to give myself some justifications why I am doing this. Feeling ‘無聊’ sometimes can be caused by a sense of emptiness or ‘空虛’ but I hope that is not happening to be. When people feel ‘空虛’, they lose their directions and can easily be preyed to do some bad things – I think some people commit crime because of this? So, if I am really doing ‘nothing’, I should say I do not feel like doing anything right now. All I need is some rests. Right?

Other than wanting to know about motivations behind one’s behavior, similarly, we could apply this to meanings in communication – ‘people do not always say what they mean and people do not always mean what they say’. Perhaps we could try to think beyond the surface. Then, we will see the deeper meanings beyond the surface meanings.

Celebrity Consumption

Nowadays, celebrities in the world are like drops in the rain – you just can’t count! Surely, most of us would regard some kinds of celebrities as our idols. But what is the reality? Are we consuming celebrities just partly because of groupthink? Or, do we really admire one’s deeds so we have decided to treat celebrit(ies) as our role model(s)?

The Youtube video below gives a perfect demonstration of the first thought:

"On the night of July 27th, 2012, a huge prank was pulled in New York City and this is the video of what took place. Brett Cohen came up with a crazy idea to fool thousands of pedestrians walking the streets of Times Square into thinking he was a huge celebrity, and it worked! Not only did it work, it caused quite a stir. This social experiment, of sorts, makes a profound statement about how modern culture is so attracted to pop culture, without any real credibility needed.

While you are having fun watching this video, please also give yourself some thoughts about the prevalence of celebrities in society.

Writing a blog

Writing a blog has always been the rivalry between individualism and collectivism. If you can bear long enough time to try to develop your habit of writing, it will stay… at least for a few weeks. And then, to keep or not to keep the habit, that is your choice. Writing a blog should not be treated primarily as a social activity like what Facebook does. It is a way for us to express our inner self through words. If you think the other way round, you will end up stopping to write your blog when you find that there are few/no comments about your blog entries. The same destiny applies to Xanga, which was once considered a popular blog web.


In this age of information explosion, there is way too much information available in the Internet and some of them is actually repetitious because some people just like to copy other people’s work and put them as if their own. You can easily find many of such examples in Youtube. These people are wasting our time in searching for different kinds of information. So, in this case, there is always a convincing reason why we usually have to resort to books which have at least certain level of reputation guaranteed when doing research.

Today, I do not want to put the focus on books. Instead, I want to talk about ‘comments’. After reading a news passage in Yahoo, BBC or CNN or a video clipping on Youtube, would you bother reading comments written by others readers/viewers? In reality, I think commenters sometimes tell more truth than the main texts (article/video) themselves.

Below is an example of the above mentioned case from Yahoo:
Many people criticized the senior lecturer of providing wrong information to the readers… (skip, skip, lazy, lazy…) After doing some little research, it has proved the commenters to be right.

Here is another good example from Timeout:
I myself also think that the design is really stupid and wastes space. The interiors are badly put together – the floors are dark; every floors have very limited space of about a maximum of 8 classrooms; there are unused space, particularly the angle part, is designed just to fit the design of the building…

So, would we spend some time to activate our critical mind in judging the validity of a piece of news? Or will you just click the ‘share’ button when you find it interesting? Have a thought for yourself.

Before ending, there is a piece of personal advice I would like to share with all of you – dig ONLY into the areas that what you really want/need to and leave the rest aside. Life is short and life is about making choices. One cannot get to know all the fields available in the world – we learn and we forget. And I think this is also the reason why we all have different careers and we contribute to society in different aspects, right?

Extended reading:

[Smarts: It's Not How Much You Learn That Matters. It's How Much You Remember]

The Hallway to Online Fame – Youtube

Who say Hong Kong people lack creativity? The prevalence of Youtubers in Hong Kong proves one point that there are many creative Hong Kongers who can express themselves brilliantly through Youtube videos or what we call video blogs (Vblogs). They start to a form sophisticated discourse community. When compared them with myself, I find that I should work more hard to pursue my own goals. I always think there are always some lazy people in the world and I just need to work a little bit harder than them and then I can then secure myself a job.

You may say that some of them make non-sense Youtube videos. But, at least they have the courage to post a video, pursue what want to do and say what they want to express.

Some says ‘The biggest mistake one can ever make is not to make mistakes’. I totally agree to this statement. Definitely, I need to change my attitude and should work hard for myself.

Below are some examples of well-known HK Youtubers:
Ming Jai
Cooking HayHay
Lou (Mr. Lou)
司徒夾帶 (Umoviegroup)
伍公子 (Louis Ng)
窮飛龍 (Smilemiann)
薑檸樂 (Ginger Lemon Cola)
Bomba Production (Fox, Felix, Kibi…)