April 24, 2008

Airport Road | Petrol Tanker pwnage

A tanker burned to ashes at night April 23rd. Caused a lot of traffic along the airport road. I'm sure a lot of people missed their night flights. Some pictures below, but with poor quality cos of the darkness. Ho hum

Long traffic

Getting closer

Fire core

Ewedu soup to calm my nerves when I got home (gotta love it!)

This morn, more traffic...chaos ruled the road

My pissed off cabby

What is left of the petrol tanker

April 15, 2008

A yo

Hey peoples! So good to be back and thanks to all for showing some love in my last post. It helped me deal with the randomness and I didn't get to jump off the terrace.

So what it do?! Emmm, what to talk about today...nothing. Again, right now, my thoughts are like biscuit puzzles that got scattered on a terrazzo floor. Does that even make any sense!? I wonder why I don't even come here to write when I'm ever 'sane'.

*Why do I always have to remember to update after so much prodding!?
* Why is it I remember to update when I'm kinda bored and I'm never able to write something worth reading?
*Why...no, wait a minute, this isn't going to be one of those days again. *slaps self, snap out of it!

Maybe there's something:

I remember the definition my Fine Art teacher gave in J.S.S. 3 on the definition of art. Come exam or test days, you gotta love those simple, one-sentence definitions/answers. I still remember how I scrawled on the virgin page of the notebook that day, "Art can be defined as the creation of something out of nothing". Subsequent term exams, it was easier to recall when taking the tests. In fact, I recall I'm all smiles when I saw a question in the "Theory" section of the exam sheet.

Question 1:

a. Define Art
b. List three types of abstract art.
c. ...

Okay, maybe there's something to say, after all!

Aha, speaking of which, I remember:

Setting: a few bottles of beer and water, expected grilled fish. I dunno if the skies had any stars that night, but there was little or no breeze; the mood around the joint was quite boisterous, the usual: booze, ladies, some sorta munchies, music, smoke (from grill and cigs).
Mission: First meeting
Participants: Jaja, Yosh and some other Jaja-blokes
Side events: Nothing, other than being the first meeting. Actually, things came up, but we didn't get much of talking to do.

See, I can't even remember most of what we discussed, or lemme say, for reasons best decided upon by Jaja and me, I'd rather not delve into them here and now. But one thing that I never seize to forget that evening was when we ventured to the topic of our individual blogs, bloggers, blogville, reading habits, writing etc. One thing I remember I told him is that most people love reading other peoples' writings (me inclusive). While reading, there's this 'how did this person come up with this?" moment or usually moments. In most books, there's always the "Acknowledgement" page where the writer(s)/author(s) give credits, so it's noteworthy that what you are reading wasn't a solo project. The writing undergoes a lot of refinement, editing, call it whatever, until there's a finished product in whatever intended form it was meant to be. But still, na somebodi do the work o! Someone came up with the original idea and went to work. This is commendable...very!

And then there are different types of writers for different categories...satire, prose, thriller, fiction, dialogue, whatever. There seem to be specialists for these different categories and most writers find a niche in either of these or more diverse areas.

I love reading, I love writing (though I wish I can do this much better). Like some people I know who are like me, I feel inadequate (yeah I know I shouldn't). During my "English Composition" classes, I got "Write to Learn" by Donald M. Murray. Pretty good book. Got hammered with the "everyone can write" mantra and it takes this and that to make yourself one helluva writer. The problem is, when writing isn't your chosen path and you just want to be informed and move on to what you wish to do. In my case, and unfortunately for most students, I use the information I need to pass exams and move on. It's sad sha, that's why most people who come out of school today don't know jack 'cos the value of education is sorta placed more on what is in it for me after graduation than what can I do with my skills? What value have I added to myself and what am I willing to contribute to the world? But I won't go into that now. Back to the subject on hand...

So what did this attitude to writing mean for me? I'm sorta guilty cos the few times I write, which in reality hasn't been so much, I ignore some of the rules of drafting (for the upteenth time), editing, experimenting with other perspectives POVs, word choice, tenses, getting reviews and criticism before passing it out half-done. Me, I don't have bl0g-drafts...I just keep repeating the usual system of 'plunge right in and write the last draft'...maybe cos I struggle for time to keep the cobwebs away from this joint. I'm sure i haven't even done a good deal of work on that either
*waaaah, waaaah, waaaaaah _ _ _ sneezes some snot* aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! Now that's refreshing.
But I know, I have to start somewhere, and while informal writing is what it is, it aids and shapes whatever would come out in a formal writing.

We can't all be writers and while some of us attempt, we can't all be winners. One good thing is just to be able to convey thoughts through whatever the heck comes outta your mind at any time. That's my mission but in the same vein, I'd love to commend bloggers I've come across, both electronically and physically who do this seemingly seamlessly. Kudos to una, you know yourselves. Unlike how abstract it feels while reading the John Sauls and John Sanford etc, reading peoples blogs bring it all the more home; these r Naijas, these are going-ons in their lives at any given time, and they keep doing it well. Keep, keeping on guys!

So what's been bothering me?

* Windows 7

As if we've not had enough crock with Windows Vista, I read Microsoft is about to also find a successor for Vista in what is currently codenamed "Windows 7". Emmm, people are yet to acclimatize to the unkind shock that is Windows Vista. Microsoft is still working behind the scenes to 'make things better', make their pockets better. I think it's high time people get to open their eyes to OpenSource software and get friendly with it. It will take some getting used to but it is doable. Just as there are relationships formed amongst big corporations in a way that it permeates almost every aspect of our lives, there should be endeavors to promote technology for all and that can be accessible by most if not all. Some people definitely will be left behind.

While many people I've tried to 'win over' complain about the OpenSource system being too techie, geeky, nerdy, I think efforts are being made to make easier to use applications. A lot of us already know of:

a. Mozilla that work on the free, fast and light FireFox web browser,
b. WordPress, fine blog publishing utility
c. Ubuntu, light operating system that works better than Microsoft's Windows Vista. You can get by even though you are 'code/scripting challenged'.
d. OpenOffice, free word processing and other basic office work software.

...amongst others. Check here for other OpenSource Projects

My case: We need to get our work done, but most software are expensive to purchase and while most of these corporations from one side of their mouth preach accessible technology for all, they at the same time pinch people where it hurts cos most if not everything na money! Not everyone can shell out close to US$500 for professional software, except of course, big corporations and 'big people'. What makes OpenSource software initiative beautiful is that it's accessible and affordable by most, if not all. Who no like free tin?

I guess I've made my point on this.


* "Buying Shares"

The rate at which banks offer shares these days is alarming. For those of us who are edgy on some matters, they sure are doing a good job in keeping us that way. Yeah, yeah, I know life is all about risks, but I beg to differ. Some issues are better dealt with with a fifty-feet pole.

Most Nigerians are illiterate and alliterate to the idea of shareholding. They feel it's a 'get-rich-quick' scheme. Some times and for some reasons, I don't blame them. But I can't blame these financial institutions either who are out to make their profits. People just see IPOs on the Tv or listen to jingles on FM and they feel they know all they need to know vis-á-vis buying shares. They don't even give attention to the comment "Please consult your bank or registered stock brokers for advise" or something that goes in that line. Heck, they don't even know who a stock broker is. Like my friend the other day, bought shares years ago and is rocking on his seat, waiting for 'returns'. He even got angry that he's lost some money! Lol. Sheesh, like does it really work like that? Shares aren't mushrooms, man! Be easy.

I've forgotten what next I want to say. I'm hungry, but I'd leave y'all with Taylor Swift's "Teardrops On My Guitar. I'm currently feeling this song so much!