Friday, October 28, 2005

Of Staples and Paper Shredders

About 5 years, 4 months, and 2 days ago I started at my actual place of work. My first tasks involved removing staples, just that, staple removal. This was because the documents that were stapled together were to be processed in a high capacity scanner in order to digitize archives.

Though not very fulfilling, my work allowed me to get acquainted with staplers and staple removers, paper shredders, and a myriad of other exciting office equipment - don't get me started on the guillotine. Today it was required of me to use those "powers" once more - damn.

We were clearing space by shredding old forms and useless letters. Needless to say my skills did come in handy. But I noticed one very important thing: my powers are diminished now. I am so much slower it's not even funny.

However, I also noticed another new skill. Just like blind men realize their hearing improves over time after losing their sight, I understood I can bullsh*t my way out of things a lot faster. I spent the morning shredding stuff and removing staples at a slower rate, which in turn allowed me to cunningly evade some backed up things with that excuse!

So, two lessons: one, you never lose something without getting another back, and, two, removing staples sucks - as do paper cuts (**OW!!!**).

PS. Hope the weather in Europe is good enough to travel through! :-)

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Deja Vu

Deja Vu has to be one of the most enigmatic experiences to human beings. Long existing, and long investigated, deja vu remains unexplained by science.

Although there are many ideas as to what it may be, the "most likely candidate is that deja vu is an anomaly of memory; it is the impression that an experience is "being recalled" which is false. This is substantiated to an extent by the fact that in most cases the sense of "recollection" at the time is strong, but any circumstances of the "previous" experience (when, where and how the earlier experience occurred) are quite uncertain"/1. I am, however, of the 'romantic' belief that deja vu may be precognition, not going so far as calling it prophecy - imagine, The Prophet Vicz.

I choose to write of this because today, around 1pm, I was in "La Sirena" - a department store in La Mella - and I had a deja vu. I remembered having seen what happened today years ago at bedtime, and at that moment years ago, thinking that It was strange that I was in a department store with two women I had not at the moment met. But it did happen. I was indeed in a store with two women I met recently - both whom I adore.

So, precognition or not, having that deja vu at least reminded me of one thing; you never really know through which paths life will lead you. We have a saying in Dominican Republic, not near as nice or positive as my previous sentence. It's short and sweet: "No escupas pa' 'riba", meaning don't spit upwards. You take your pick.


Thursday, October 06, 2005

Las Matas de Farfan

Although I was born in beautiful Santo Domingo, my father's side of the family hails from the Dominican "deep south". My great-great-grandparents came to the island and moved to this side from Haiti. They settled in Las Matas de Farfan, a then mainly agricultural town. The town name translates to "Farfan's Trees" or "Farfan's Plants".

Las Matas de Farfan is about 40 minutes away from San Juan de la Maguana and 30 minutes away from the Dominican border with Haiti. It is one of the biggest towns in the south (which is really the west, but who am I to change things?). Its main activity is farming. They still hold a "mercado", or market, three times a week, selling diverse items in the main street.

I once asked my father about the name but i don't remember what he told me at that time. It came to mind last time I was there, but I didn't ask. While driving around with my dad, we pulled over in one of the parks to meet some people. I wandered away and found a bronze plaque by the shade of the trees. In general terms it stated that the town was founded by a man called Bartolome de Farfan in 17XX (I'm not sure). My dad came around, pointed at the trees above the plaque, and said, "Oh, those are "las matas de Farfan"." They are tamarind trees. Just thought it would be interesting to point this out.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005


Believe me, I've been trying to put together a new post. Its just that work has gotten in my way (jeje). I leave you with this:

Dumb Criminals
Dumb Laws