I believe that the only way you can know which way to go is to look as forward as you can.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Collecting fruit stickers: how serious can this be?

Looking over http://www.hobbieslist.com/ … this is not even a hobby…
I’ve seen many websites that try to give “hobby ideas”. I guess searching your hobby in a list works as well as having a list with people names to choose your friend from.
In my opinion there are 3 rules to call something a hobby:

  1. You avoid naming the activity “hobby” to yourself. It’s some kind of little obsession or “passion”.
  2. When some practical guy asks you “What is the use of doing that?!”, you won’t give an answer. It does not mean there is no serious reason. It simply means that your main reason is that you love doing it. By the way, that guy is narrow-minded ;)
  3. You are actually going to learn interesting things from this activity but learning was never your main goal.
I’ll give an example. I collect fruit and veggie stickers. I must confess, I also collect the triangular labels from the cheese wedges since I was 10… Yes… these are two of my little obsessions.

What have I learned?
The number (PLU code) from the fruit stickers can actually reveal a very important thing
1. If it starts with 4 it is a normal veggie
2. If it starts with 8, it is genetically engineered
3. If it starts with 9 it is organic.
I am not the only software engineer under the sun… collecting fruit stickers and having this particular urge to collect small disposable things following of course two common sense rules:
The allure of like objects (that is, a set of things with similar size, shape, and whatnot) is difficult to resist. I am uneasy about the collector mentality, with its inevitable trajectory of ever-increasing sums spent on objects whose values are appreciated by a diminishingly small number of people. I can't stomach the idea of consumption as a creative pursuit. A more informal sort of acquisition - saving the disposable artifacts of everyday life - lets me satisfy the urge to collect. The rules for my fruit sticker collection are 1) each sticker must be unique (no repeats), and 2) the item of produce must be eaten by me.[Andrea Shiman- Fruit Stickers—The Overlooked Booty of the Lunchroom]
I tell you collecting fruit stickers is a serious thing… :)

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Alize on travel

What can it be more exciting then travel? Actually a lot of things (like computer games for some people :P)… but seriously traveling changes the way you think, your personality and somehow the vision about esthetics. There are all kinds of travel… but the way I see it…
There is weekend/opportunistic travel. That’s right. There is never time/ enough money to travel. It is never the right moment. Therefore, the philosophy is not to miss any occasion.

It is a big disadvantage with this approach: you visit everything in a hurry. You go and see stuff in a “veni, vidi, vici” style and meditate about it later. The advantage: you don’t have time to get bored. This is important. I always fear that one day I might say that I find travel some kind of exhausting effort and decide to stop searching for exciting places to go.

When I want to travel some place new (or an event) I go to Flickr and other similar web-sites to set up my expectations. There are all kinds of travel / tourist attraction sites but it seems to me that they always miss the essence. I’ve found other people’ travel photos so useful for so many times that I felt in debt to share my small collection in a public gallery too. :) I haven’t yet time to sort all of them but what I have ready is on my Picasa photo album.

So… here I am in WA State with a long list of cool things to do. About Seattle.. I like the I520 and I90 bridges when the traffic is not heavy… and regarding the Space Needle... I find it quite nice. When I see such a tower I remember the breathtaking feeling of being in Tour Eiffel’s elevator looking down over Paris at night. It simply worth doing this… New York is certainly an impressive urban experience but something with a medieval flavor like Brussels is more appealing to me. My all time favorite place is Brugge. This medieval city has cathedrals, old buildings, amazing architecture, daffodil gardens and even fairy-tail like windmills. Swans swim on the water channels and eat from your hand.

I think travel can help you choose the best place to live in. You have to see both awful and good shows to recognize a great one. I could never understand why a lot of young people say, “I hate living in Bucharest. Terrible city.” It is not that bad at all. It has beautiful architecture and nice parks; it has cleaner subways then Paris and New York, it is not that crowded and you have plenty of urban life. This sounds just nice to me.

I think it is nothing more rewarding and pleasant then mountain hiking no matter how strenuous the trail might be. The “let’s go to the mountain” does not mean sitting all day in a warm hotel-room enjoying the TV. It is such great feeling catching your breath while admiring volcanic lakes or waterfalls or an impressive belvedere. I must admit… exploring caves is even better for me!
I have a long list of mountain trails here around … and these are pretty much my plans for the next weeks. I hope we’ll have sunny weekends! :)

Sunday, March 11, 2007

My movie ratings page

I guess it makes sense to post things in a place where the people interested in the subject can find and read them. I prefer rottentomatoes.com rather then movies.yahoo.com or imdb.com because the critics are a little more exigent and reveal many truth and subtle aspects about the movies.

So, I've decided to rate movies on rottentomatoes.com and here is my personal web page.

I'll try to rate mostly the movies that draw my attention somehow. I'll mostly rate the distinguishably good movies that I thing worth seeing. Sometimes I might also rate the intriguingly bad movies in contrast to the positive reviews from the critics.

Hope you'll enjoy my movie reviews and recommendations!