January 2009

What the hell is happening with the English language? This is, by no means, an original rant as I’ve read several like it before, but I decided to chime in. There have been several other pieces and books written by many authors who have loathed the diretion in which English is headed. To start, I am not perfect and neither is my writing, usage and grammar. But it’s still a far cry from the “lolz we talk lyk dis on da iNt3rnetz” talk that people genuinely use! Sure, I’ll joke around and end a word with the letter “z” every so often in the company of friends and those who know it’s all in good fun. Plural words begin to end with a “z” and even words that aren’t plural (ex. im gonna headz to da coffee shopz. meet u there! lolz).

What’s worse is the failure to make the possessive and contraction distinction. I really hate it when people say “your” when they mean “you’re.” We all learned that in 2nd grade, so what’s so hard about it? Same goes for the its/it’s confusion; the former is possessive and the latter is a contraction and short for “it is.”

I’ll admit that as of late, I’ve been getting lazy myself. I always abhorred “LOL” but find myself using it every so often. I also had a strong distaste for “BRB” and “GTG” or “G2G.” I don’t use the last two so much, but it’s become normal in IM and SMS talk that it’s going to end up poisoning the language. Maybe I’m being extreme, but it’s not hard to see where this could be going.

Speaking of acronyms and laziness, one that bothers me a lot is the mixture of two or three word cities, towns and neighborhoods: WeHo (pronounced wee-hoe) for West Hollywood, SoMa for South of Market, NoHo for North Hollywood, SoHo for South of Houston (how-stun) and so on. Is it that fucking hard to say the name of the city as it was named? If your name was John Hopkins, would you appreciate it if I called you JoHo?

Let’s clean up the laziness in our work and even our daily banter. Why not make an effort to spell things out, learn correct and proper usage (I’m guilty of this, too) and write without making glaring and painful mistakes every now and then?

From the famous philosopher Socrates, “To find yourself, think for yourself.” While this is very true, it has become increasingly difficult these days. How do you think for yourself when you’re bombarded with advertising, media, and frivolity everyday? I live in Los Angeles and there is no shortage of hive-mindedness around here. Then again, I find the same problem everywhere now thanks to the Internet. All it takes is one remotely reasonable idea, and the world becomes engulfed in flames with the new idea – no matter how wrong or right it might be. Take, for example, the news of Steve Jobs’ health. A popular tech blog called Gizmodo wrote up a piece a few weeks ago stating the reason for Steve Jobs’ absence at Macworld: He is in bad health. Many were quick to shoot these rumors down, though some actually believed it. Personally, I think Gizmodo wasn’t all that confident but ran with the story, anyway, and they happened to get lucky that it was confirmed. Everyone took their side of the fence and were awaiting the news hoping their team would be the one that gets to say, “I told you so.”

There is a major problem with group thinking or hive minds. I have had many controversial ideas or opinions, being a natural skeptic, and have been shot down or ostracized by many for what I think. I’d also like to think that I’ve turned out to be correct three out of four times, but that’s a different story. My issue with group thinking is that there is a complete lack of skepticism. Someone starts an idea, it sounds pretty damn good, more people perpetuate that idea and suddenly it is accepted as fact. It reflects the power of ignorance, the inability to think for onesself, and today’s complete lack of skepticism. If the Internet says it, it must be true, right?

I’m going to remain controversial and I am going to continue to question things that I find questionable. It’s funny, a lot of people in Los Angeles always feel like they’re not a typical Angeleno. The stereotype is either the male who’s far too concerned with his paycheck, car, clothes and hair, or the woman who’s immersed in her looks, her diet, and who she parties with and where. If you happen to be just shy of being any one of those characters, you’ve probably heard the phrase, “You’re such a breath of fresh air; you’re nothing like the typical L.A. guy/girl.” The irony, of course, is to find that statement coming from someone who believes he or she is also not cut from the L.A. cloth, but they’re happily wrapped in it.

Whatever the people in your community believe in, whether it’s your hometown, your professional community or spiritual group, don’t ever be afraid to question what you’re being told. Don’t ever worry about looking like a fool for being brave enough to exercise free inquiry. Remember, just because millions of people think the earth is flat, it doesn’t mean they’re right – and in many cases, they’re not.

It’s one of my favorite topics to tackle and one that has proven to be taboo – religion. Why is it such a taboo? Why do people feel so strongly for or against it? What about the people who seem to be on the fence or those who just don’t give a damn about it? Many films, books, and songs have been done in the name of, or against, religion and belief in the supernatural. Yes, it’s a subject that’s been beaten to death, but it certainly doesn’t hurt to remind ourselves just how stupid religion really is. There you have it. It is my bias and I am very confident in what I believe. Call it arrogance or misplaced faith, but I’ve come from the other camp, had a few years of being on the fence, and am on the free-thinking or rational side. Tonight I’ll be hosting another radio show so don’t forget to call in and lambast me with your irrational thoughts! I’ll be updating this post after the show to recap. Follow the link to listen to the show between 9:30 and 10:00 p.m. on January 10.


Call in between 9:30 and 10:00 p.m. PST and I will make sure you get on the air! (646) 727-1190

Who’s late to the party? Yes, that’s right it’s me! Sorry to disappoint my handful of readers, but I have been ill and very busy lately. I hope you all had a brilliant start to the new year. I’m sure many of you have probably broken some resolutions already, but that’s okay. Resolutions are meant to be broken – their only real purpose is to make you feel better at the beginning of the year for everything that went wrong during the prior year. How’s that for optimism? I’d like to turn you now to my new radio station. In addition to doing this blog, I thought it would be fun to accompany it with some audio. You can listen to my first show at the link provided below. Be patient, I get cut off for almost nearly a minute! My phone got cut out while I was using it to tether my laptop to the internet and talk for the show at the same time. Never a great idea. Have fun y’all and hopefully we’ll have a great new year! Keep your eyes peeled as I will updated this more frequently.