Tag Archives: Internet

INTERNET, SOCIAL NETWORKS AND NEW FRIENDS

I’ve never denied the fact that I’m addicted to internet, and never had a problem to admit it. Since I signed in my first e-mail account in January 31, 2000, and started discovering the possibilities of the net, I’ve been using and abusing.

Guess I discovered it in the most appropriate time for myself. I had just got back from UK and was in my hometown again, limited by a standard city, so quiet and relaxing compared to London, and limited in terms of rock and culture agenda, there were moments I used to feel suffocated. You have to understand I had met so many people in a big city and enjoyed this anonymous status implied, all of a sudden it seems that I was a prisoner in my own city. Not that I didn’t have friends, because I had and met new ones, but you know, there weren’t many people around sharing same passions and interests as me. I’m talking about rock, of course.

keyboard

I started visiting a cyber cafe close to college to check e-mails from all the friends left behind. You know how these romances start and end. Very intense and constant in the beginning, till they fade out as in a film and people ends up forgetting and feeling lazy. Usual shit. Anyway. I had heard of chat rooms and discovered there was a general one focused on music, so I checked what it was about. My username was LadyEvil, as an American friend used to call me. The beginning was quite disappointing, as the rhythm was frenetic and in order to catch someone’s attention and start interacting it took me some time. But eventually I managed and started visiting the café and spending several hours a day during the week, until I begged my dad to install internet at home.

Since then a new universe opened to me, and I found out it was the perfect way to get acquainted with people from everywhere to share interests, to be updated on anything going on around the world, look for stuff, and learning. You know I’ve talked many times about my friend Jaume, right? I met him in that chat room, and we’ve been friends ever since. Thanks to forums I also started dating theonewhocannotbenamed, met lots of people who have become friends and participated of events. And of course, I’ve learned lots about music, films and useless stuff. Social networks, which are so criticized, have also been good to me. I’ve discovered lots of bands, tattoo artists, helped me to get acquainted with musicians and music journalists and also to stay in touch with friends regardless of our geographical situation. Finally blogs and the possibility of having my own have encouraged my writing as a way of expression I thought it had died when I stopped writing letters.

Even though social networks have always been criticized as killing the actual social life of people, I must say I’ve never felt as much accompanied as I am nowadays. It doesn’t matter I stay home with flu, because someone will interact with me eventually. And at this point, it’s needless to remark my social life is a very active and rich one.

When you are in your 30s and aging, there comes a stage in which lots of people around are in couple, get married or have kids, and it’s difficult to keep up with the relations in the same way as when you were in your 20s. Not only because of family ties but also due to responsibilities at work, schedules and other stuff. Life changes a lot, it’s unavoidable. Friends are not as available as they used to and getting new acquaintances gets more difficult. Well, I’m not talking about that “lonely-people-looking-desperately-for-a-couple-crappy-sites”, but about Twitter for instance, where you start meeting people in your same situation with shit of any kind in common. I know people who love Star Wars, others dig Guns N’ Roses, and others share my passion for tattoos…whatever you might think of, really.

If you are in touch and get on well with people through 140 characters, at some point one of the parts will try to step forward and focus on a more personal (and private) friendship. Then I guess we’d talk about Facebook, the great monster of social networks. Whatever you share is also a reflection of who and how you are, and everybody gets a picture of the real individual they are getting to know. Or it should be like that, unless you’re capable of performing DeNiro 24/7.

And why all this? Just because. Last weekend I finally met this great guy I can call friend now who I met thanks to Twitter nearly two years ago, and the experience was terrific. Prospects that everything worked fine were high, yet, to be honest, I was careful not to have great expectations to keep from feeling disappointed, but the end everything worked awesome, and I enjoyed a fantastic weekend. I only hope it’s been the first of many. For years now I’ve been swallowing bullshit related to all the dangers of internet and blah blah blah… Of course, you gotta be cautious, but you know? Nice people and assholes are everywhere, and the chances to meet them are the same, so, why being so close? Why do people deny and reject the possibility of finding wonderful people in different places? Why are we so stupid and don’t take advantage of the possibilities we have at just a click?

Breezin'

I’m tired of listening to some narrow minded people who still burn my ear saying I’m too hooked to internet and that kind of crap. At least I’m approaching all the chances I have at hand to accomplish my vital target, which is something as simple as enjoying as much as possible.

This been said, thanks Gab, you might be reading this and have a laugh thinking I’m a nutter, but it was great to spend quality time with you, and I’m grateful that you contribute to my search for happiness and fun. Well fuckin’ done!

SYSTEM FAILURE

One of the most fascinating things about my granny, aka Yaya, was her capability of adapting to a world which evolved at sound speed in the past century. And she didn’t blink an eye in sign of wonderment. She used to assimilate the advances as they came, processing them as normal quicker than we would in her situation, I’m positive.

She was born in 1907, and only a couple of weeks she missed from being 99. Not bad for a lady, huh?

My yaya lived in the times of WWI and WWII, and survived the Civil War and all that came during and after he same. She experienced herself the introduction of vehicles substituting animal draught, films and TV, the evolution of music into different formats (she used to love my CDs). She witnessed giant iron winged vehicles taking off beyond her comprehension, the development of electrical appliances such as fridges, ovens, microwaves or juicers, videos, and cordless phones.She used to tell me how advanced and daring she was, not only for wearing skirt trousers but also for horse riding like men. Can you imagine?

The reason I’m telling all this has to do with the drama experienced today, when I woke up this morning and with my early morning coffee, found out my Internet home connection wasn’t working properly. My mobile was surfing thanks to the Wi-Fi with no problem, but the computer was unable to connect to any website.

You might be judging me and thinking I’m hooked to Internet, and I won’t argue on this regard, nor try to convince you otherwise, and won’t justify myself to feel better. I love Internet, and thanks to it, I’ve been able to book a flight to Tokyo, cook a wonderful risotto and unblock a toilet on Bank holiday.

Anyway, I’ve developed certain routines involving my computer and the net, and overnight, my computer is wrong and I’m unable to do my stuff. perhaps you don’t understand the picture, but I’m single, live on my own and right now I’m unemployed, which means I have plenty of time to do many things, and I spend great time in front of my laptop. On holidays I could forget about it, but when I’m forced to quit for causes beyond my hand, I simply hate it.

I like to consider a self-made girl in many aspects. From my teenage I’ve learned to do many things by myself, and have enjoyed being on my own when carrying out certain stuff. It also encourages you to manage your skills and resources and craftiness has an important role in your life. However, and sorry for the girls who would hang me by a rope, as a woman, I sometimes need a husband for rental. There are certain things I simply can’t do, mainly because I haven’t had the chance to try to learn and do under supervision: use an electric drill or handle electrical wires, are easy examples which come to mind.

Technology is wonderful as long as it works. Unfortunately it’s also unpredictable and something you were doing yesterday, which was working successfully, might not the day after. Why? I don’t know, the heat? A virus? the mother board? You reset everything, re-start the computer 10 times, but still doesn’t work, and a  feel of anxious desperation invades you deep inside, with two thoughts occupying your mind: ”Sheeit, it was working fine yesterday!” and “What the hell am I gonna do?”. It’s the moment of DRAMA.

In my case the computer worked but the internet connection, whose signal was apparently excellent, wasn’t. On the other hand my phone was functioning normal with the Wi-Fi.

I called one of my best friends who is a super IT guy, but since he lives in Madrid, and despite the screen prints I sent him via phone, he couldn’t see what was wrong. The second attempt has been carried out by a second friend this afternoon. After one hour he’s switched off the laptop and lighted a cigarette. The third friend has been the lucky one and had to do something I wouldn’t done by myself, but finally the computer has reacted to his restoring of the system and everything’s back to normal. I was positive my friends would fix the problem, I trust them a lot, but the truth is that there’s been a moment I expected the worst.

My point is that I’ve felt like an ignorant asshole the whole day because I only know how to use a computer and work with the different programs I need, but my knowledge of maintenance, repairing and preventing, aside the antivirus, is almost none. You are not given a guide for incidences and when studying computers at school, nobody advise on these matters. We depend too much on devices we don’t even know how they work.

I remember the first time a virus was notified I almost had a heart attack, thinking that my computer, which had cost me effort and money, was not going to work anymore. Oh man! What a horrible feeling!

Machines are not perfect, and at the end of the day is the human performance essential to restore the mess. At this point I usually wonder, would it be possible a robot uprising, such as the started with Skynet? Or in Westworld?Perhaps, but thinking of these sudden errors, sooner or later machines would collapse by themselves.

Pablo, you are my IT friend. You’ve saved my life, made my day, helped me through this shit but, I can’t make paella yet 😉 (*private joke friends, hope you understand). Thanks so much!!! I owe you!

THE AMAZING PLEASURE OF RECEIVING A PARCEL

 

Did I ever tell you how much I love buying? No? Are you sure?
 
I’m not into buying clothes at all, in fact I hate it. In case I go to a fashion store, can’t spend more than 30 seconds having a quick look. If there’s something outstanding enough to catch my eye  I usually buy it and then try it at home, no matter I gotta return it back in case it doesn’t fit, rather than queuing. Moreover, according to market studies, these stores play horrible disco music in order girls and boys feel like they were going out, in order their brains are in the mood for seducing or whatever, so their buying impulse is huge. I think the latest piece I bought, a cheap black mini skirt, was in December, and I was carrying my headphones J
 
The exception is the (street) sneakers, I love them and would buy a pair every single month, but that would be silly, I have some in the wardrobe still never worn in 5 years, others duplicated “just in case” because I love them…a mess. I used to be called Imelda Marcos of sneakers, reminding that dictator’s who used to have hundreds and hundreds of pairs of shoes. Anyway, I haven’t bought a pair since I came back from Japan almost a year ago, and desperately need to buy!
 
Sorry I’m diverting to other subjects…I wanted to talk about buying stuff via Internet.
 
Nowadays you can purchase anything from anywhere, just by a click. This is wonderful, the world at your hand! It’s true you have to be careful, because it’s so easy to spend lots of money in just 20 minutes…the offer is incredibly wide. Maaan! You can have a poster from Australia and it will take you 2 minutes to buy it, ain’t it awesome?
 
There’re still many people who don’t trust purchasing through websites, although there are many tools for keeping your money safe, although offer in stores is less. I buy anything, from food supplies (God bless!!) to plane tickets, posters and belt buckles, anything.
 
Sure it’s sometimes too cold to buy something as you don’t have it in your hands immediately and gotta wait few days or even weeks, depending many issues: availability, commodity, origin, shipping choice…And then you always feel that uneasiness because post services are crap in most countries and many letters and parcels get lost on their way.
 
It’s like one of the latest things I’ve bought, better said, pre-ordered, QOTSA first album reissued on vinyl. It won’t be available until March, the 3rd, trusting production will meet the deadlines, of course. Think about it, it’s been 3 weeks since I paid for it, and still 2 more remain. Then I have to wait for a mail confirming the parcel has been sent.
 
This is the point Toi starts getting nervous. I make up my mind calculating and estimated time of arrival, let’s say 5-7 working days from UK, which mean 9-13 real ones. Oh My God! Still, even you try to be rational, on day 4th you start looking to the mailbox almost obsessively, wondering same questions once and once again: when does the mailman arrive with letters? Will it fit in my mailbox? Will he ring at my door or just leave a notice? Any bank holidays which might delay the parcel arrival?
 
After day 7, you start getting hysteric, start reading the mail of confirmation because you don’t remember anymore when the fuckin’ parcel was sent. You know if you send an email they’re going to advise you wait for at least two more weeks, thus that option is useless. Your mailbox door is about to get ruined for good, because you open it and close 3 times a day…aaaaaaaaah!
 
Just the day you have to go to the doctor, when you’re back home, you notice there’s something there, but hopeless you think, shit! More junk mail! Still you open the door and voila! Here it is!! The parcel you’ve been waiting for so looong! And you are so happy about it, there’s nothing else in the world, it’s like receiving a present even you already know what it will be after unwrapping it (and paid for it), but doesn’t matter, you finally got it!! Yeaaaaah!!!
 
Now, seriously. I usually buy stuff, at least one or two cd’s a month, and receive all parcels at work, in order to avoid theft or notices. I should get used to it, but I’m not, and still get nervous, and excited when some of my colleagues say “Toi, there’s something for you!”. Some things have taken even three months to arrive due to shipper’s laziness (I could name a merchandising company responsible for one of my favorite bands’ stuff I had to push for 3-4 months…California style!), others got lost, and depending on the websites claiming is really an easy and positive procedure, and others remain at the local post office forgotten because the idiot mailman forgot to leave you notice…everything’s happened to me, but still I find the amazing pleasure of receiving a parcel something marvelous.