Liberal Thoughts

issues that otherwise won't matter to the others

Is seeing believing or believing seeing?

I had been passing across some random papers, links and magazines about multiple subjects that I got hung onto this topic. With a collection of some thoughts and also after looking out for some “self thought” topics, I came up with this as a speech topic in my third CC project in my Toastmasters journey. Though the actual speech didn’t go exactly as I wrote this up, the core matter still remained the same. And here is how i scripted it.

Our earth is a fixed flat plate around which the sun rises and sets. – How difficult it would have been for this idea to change to what is more prevalent and apt now? What was the problem there? The people of those ages believed what they could see.

After the next 5 to 7 minutes, you will be able to understand the complexities of what it takes to associate seeing to believing. Let me try and eliminate the problem of the visible and invisible through 3 statements –

Statement # 1 – “Seeing is believing”
This statement in whole is a mentality lying underneath all of us. And yes, it’s very valid too. Well for most part of it. However, there are two very basic facts that we do not consider when we pass across that statement.
Fact A – “it’s not there but it’s there” – this is very elemental – Carbon atoms are the basic compound of every living organism. But! Can you see a single Carbon atom? Diving a bit deeper into the atom, there are protons, neutron, electrons. Well, these in their individuality are as good as existing in invisibility. To the naked eye, it’s not there, but it’s there! Can you see electricity? Can you see gravity? Theoretical existence and proof makes them as good as true and we perceive it as it is.
Fact B – “it’s there but it’s not there” – This is very much informational. Here my reference is a more complex and in theoretical form – databases! They are invisible and conceptual. You cannot see it, you cannot feel it. And yet, the knowledge bases we build will continue to treat them as purely theoretical forms of explanations.

So no matter what you get to see and what you do not, don’t just rely on seeing to believe something which is not necessarily true.

Statement # 2 – “You’ll see it when you believe it”
That’s an optimistic way of motivating people. It can show that after reading a best seller by that name on personal development, you decide that you are going to change. You believe that you are going to change. Let’s take the case of a clinic that helps people reduce weight. “The slim you in 3 weeks”, “wear that spaghetti strap your boyfriend gifted you”, “Obesity is a disease and its curable, Call us now!”. And the innocent flab bellied people would place themselves in hypothetical situation. They are forced to make believe!

Of late I have been forced by the environment around me to get distracted towards those similar ads, “Cure baldness before its too late” Ouch! That sends a shocker in me. And to think of the fact that I used to keep a mane of hair back in my school days, it saddening to see the hypothetical me with a bald head. I definitely do not want it to be in a situation where its “TOO LATE”. They are forcing us consumers to believing what we want to see.

So no matter how much you wait to See to Believe, if it’s a make believe concept, you will get to see it.

Third and final statement – “I’ll believe it when I see it”
Relying on believing by waiting to see it, there arises a great degree of uncertainty though. According to Heisenberg’s principle of Uncertainty in quantum mechanics, the observer influences the circumstances being observed. It’s also a personalization of the first statement about how I am treating the bits and pieces of information that I have been fed since my education started. I am made to believe in invisible things which are difficult to digest. Why? Simply because in our limited “Alice in wonderland” territory, most of the things I know had been proven by some person, and I have taken it for granted. Have I tried to prove myself that the earth is round? NO! I had learned that there were nine planets in the solar system. But its been a couple of years now that they say that Pluto is not a planet but then they added a couple of others to the list. How do I even know if they are not bluffing? If they add or remove planets from my conceptual understanding, I cannot see beyond the morning star and the evening star and that’s all my naked eyes can believe in.

In Japan, green and blue are considered as the same color and referred to as ‘aoi’. A native Japanese would point to the sky to indicate ‘blue’ to show the color ‘aoi’. He will then point to the ‘green leaf’ and say it’s the same color ‘aoi’. For them what colors they see is purely on perception, but when I see it, I will definitely call a green ‘green’ and a blue ‘blue’. Why? Because I see it as two different colors based on how and what I was taught.

So, even if something is not there but there or something is there but not there, even when you believe what you want to see, what I will believe is not necessarily purely on what I see but what is embedded with the unconscious knowledge of what I have learnt and am educated with. The fact that something is not readily visible doesn’t mean that it is true or if it is false. That being said, its best to conclude that it’s up to yours and my mind, as to what we would want to believe, we see it or not! It’s all upto us to see and believe or believe and see.

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May 12, 2011 Posted by | General | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Activity aback

Aren’t we all so fond of music and yet, there are times when we don’t get to hear any sort of music. Likewise, there hadn’t been much of an activity here. Outburst of thoughts and ideas needs some external thrust when it diminishes from within. Outcome of events never ceases to surprise or shake. The external force has come. The push has been made. Ideas and thoughts are looming up again.
Liberal ways of the thoughts is back on track!

March 26, 2011 Posted by | General | , | Leave a comment

Why so Google?

The normal human functionality is so dead in this generation. Blame it mostly on technology. We have seen mostly in most sci-fi movies of course, where the human race is so dependent on even the most simplest of things, where the use of technology has just made a slave of us human beings. That dependency is previewed in many sci-fi movies, being rubbished as fiction and “not happening” is questionable.

Androids are already in the scope of being totally present and acceptable in the human society in just a matter of some time now. There is already a ‘breed’ of robot which perceives the nature around it and copes, understands and reacts accordingly. That is ‘technology dependence’ of course. And if you don’t believe in me, you are a a sure lunatic.

Looking at the current generation of ‘intelligent and tech savvy’ people, just look at the online scenario. Look how dependent people are into the services and products of Google (referenced as G from here on). Here is a simplest of the example (and I am saddened to see it with many people). Say you know about a website name. The most common norm of people of this generation is to ‘search’ for that site name in G and then proceed ahead. That’s a pathetic sign of dependency. People have become so lethargic to even try out ‘that name’ by typing in the address bar and going to the website directly than outright in G first! Logic seems to be deviating much towards G. Are the people of this generation of the belief that G knows the best?

The direct and indirect approach

The direct and indirect approach

That I feel is callous. Next in line comes the online time spent. If you can notice, the person sitting next is most likely to be engulfed in GTalk or chat within Gmail. Wow! That no doubt is a win win situation by G folks to capture the chatting minds to successfully divert a whole generation from Yahoo Messenger to GTalk. I guess, Y! hadn’t seen this coming when G’s chat service came up. G of course deserves an applause, for it caught the sentiments of the masses to capture the chatter’s market to make its chat service an anytime running application as soon as the computer boots up. They are sure smart! And Google still gains in popularity by WoM – Word of Mouth. No expense at all in that. Technology encompassing. Of course you are free to disable the Gtalk application at all as soon as your computer is on and ready to use, but still you are tempted to launch it on your own at one point or another and keep it running until your computer is on. And I should say, G is smarter enough to let it run even when its just the mail service running. An added advantage, you get to access video enabled chat from gmail whereas Gtalk doesn’t allow it yet. People are just lured. Of course its human nature to catch with the better of the options available.

But am I complaining? I am also one amongst the users of the numerous services of G and sure am benefiting from it, a benefit which not necessarily need be monetary. But I am no preacher of them. I would rather say, go to this website blahblahblah.com or so. I would rather say “search for information of this topic in Wikipedia” than in G. I would rather prefer my friends call me over the phone or I ring them up if its something urgent or they want to discuss about something and otherwise just shoot a mail if its not so outright important. However, the sheer computing power of G makes them irrefutable to ignore and keep up with the advances of technology. It’s human nature to progress with time.

Even so, the various advances in technology is making the common man so dependent on the tech-run life, they are losing the very nature of being human. I have a belief that if the 24 hours of a mans life is being governed by multitude of those devices, its no difference than being a slave of those devices rather than the devices being your slave, a parasite living on some smart thinking by some smart group of people. It would still be inexplicable if the human mind could contemplate at what they are capable of doing on their own than relying on some ‘stupid’ devices for a superficially ‘comfortable’ life.

Of course, we seek out for various comforts of life, but its at the cost of surrendering our very nature of being human, i.e. the attribute of working out better solutions and at the same time being physically and mentally active enough to encompass the practicability of a great life. Hope wisdom is not lost for the sake of technological advancements of leading a smart life.

August 9, 2010 Posted by | General, Humanly | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Case of Bribery

I lodged a complaint against a traffic police today and for my own records as well for visibility of others like me who are harassed by cops, I thought it better to get the same complaint put up here as well.
Just about a couple of hours before this incident happened, I recall seeing a hoarding on the way saying out loud about non corruption in the state of Karnataka. Laudable! That this can be the situation as a long-term plan but for now, it’s just a joke. And I happened to have the first hand experience of it in no time after seeing the hoarding. Kiss my luck. I was so infuriated even though it was a small thing which we can easily say “it’s ok! let it go”. I have been seeing this happen again and again to me and many other people who I know. I am sure most others also have been through a similar fate but passed out of it “phewing” it off as “escaped!”.

Corruption! Sad that it gets you involved even if you are not willing to. I will still laugh at that hoarding as long as I keep on seeing it. They say “nothing’s gonna change”, “it has been like this, it will be like this”, “you can’t do anything”. Well, I am trying to do the least and let me see if the cops accuse me back of false complaints and charge me with even a bigger offense. To go with, I thought I will try out the public grievance system and use the power of internet. Good thing in here is that the people in the administration who actually are serious about removing all levels of corruption has an online version of registering complaints. And I am going to find out if it actually works or not. Bangalore traffic police runs their website wherein anyone can lodge a complaint or provide suggestions. The complaint I lodged in this link is as follows –

This is a complaint against one of the traffic police in the traffic signal between Victoria Road and HAL Airport Road. I didn’t get his name for the records though. He charged me Rs 300/- against a traffic violation of Jumping Traffic Signal today 4th Aug 2010 around 6:30 PM. I said ok and demanded the challan. He immediately said ok give Rs 100/- and after giving him the amount, again I demanded the challan because I would rather pay the government for a fine than bribe a cop to get away with it. He kept the Rs 100/- and when I still insisted for the challan acknowledging receipt of the fine, he blindly objected and started abusing in Kannada. He spoke to me in English first and then turned the tone and language of conversation into Kannada for what? Because I am an outsider? I don’t have to throw light on what is the impression of the typical policeman in the eyes of the public – amongst the few good men are these abusive, bribe taking, non moralistic guys. Well who cares about morality now-a-days anyway! I could make out that he was saying me to go learn Kannada first and then demand challan or anything and was also saying you want challan you will have to pay Rs 300/-, you go to court and pay the fine there.
Even though I was not sure if I had actually jumped the signal, I was polite enough to pay the fine, but the policeman just pocketed the money. I insisted on the challan over which he threatened me by asking a higher fine amount and saying about going to court for that. On asking about why he was saying Rs 300/- first and then came down to Rs 100/-, he said if its Rs 300/- he will charge me with a case of Dangerous Driving. Now that was surprising. Just for a bribe of 100 bucks, this guy was threatening about going to court and pay the 300 bucks there if I want. He was letting me choose. Moreover, I was riding at a speed of about 40 to 45 kmph at that turning and also due to few other 2 and 4 wheelers in that signal. So his saying about ‘Dangerous Driving’ is totally out of question here.
How does one make a distinction between Dangerous Driving and Jumping the Signal? Is the traffic policeman here at his own discretion to say Dangerous Driving if the accused doesn’t pay him the ‘bribe’? A common man like me cannot do much but just walk away because then, he can again charge me with any other serious offense and make me liable to pay for more than just Rs 100/-.
It’s not about the amount of 100 bucks I was charged with but its about the moral attitude of the traffic police. And this is the third time that this has happened to me.

After submitting the complaint, I got a BIG note saying “Thank You, We will get back to you soon”. Having a tryst with government websites earlier, I am not sure if this will work out, but its a wait and watch game now.

August 4, 2010 Posted by | General, Humanly | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Holy Cow! Shoo! What?

Speak about cow and Hinduism sees as a holy image. It’s not uncommon to see people touch a cow passing by the road and seek blessings by then touching their temple and heart with the right hand. In the countryside, they are of course used for farming and dairy products. The city side it would only serve as a dairy source and maybe some pulling bullock carts to transport supplies. But still, she is considered to be sacred, holy and so she is prayed to win some blessings. For the non-Hindu’s however, its possibly just another animal that is or was domesticated and would turn up as a menu item.

holy

apathy of the cow which is holy in India


But its surprising that the same people who treat a cow holy can also treat them in a way which definitely is not an act of sanctity . The domestic cows are seen left to roaming around in streets of busy city roads. There are no caretakers for most of such marooned cows. They are let loose and left on their own if the owners cannot meet up the medical needs or if the cow is just like another white elephant – to just feed fodder and get no milk in return. It’s sad that the same cow who is looked as a figure attached with holiness is later turned aside as another liability. Does holiness fade away with time?

During a visit to a temple with my mom and two sisters, I saw a strange and funny combination of both at the same time. And it was saddening too. A newly wed couple with few other relatives were taking shelter from sun below the plastic roof of a shop when a cow strolled their side. The woman set her hand ahead, touched the head of the cow seeking blessings, closing her eyes and then touching her forehead and lower neck. Then suddenly, her husband hit the cow hard from back and pushed aside for her to move out from ‘their’ place yelling out “Shoo! Go away! Go Away!”. I am sure the cow also would have got puzzled as what is happening. From the front there is the woman praying her and adoring her while from the back, the guy is hitting her back shooing her away. Me and my sister were feeling sad for the cow but were also laughing over the couple at how the good and bad can happen at the same time, and in this case from the same family.

You can go to any religious place but no matter how many sacred chants you made, how many statues you prayed for blessings, as long as there is any ill-treatment from your side, there is no washing off your sins.

January 18, 2010 Posted by | concerns, General, Humanly | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Car Aflame

Aflame! Sorry but I do not mean an excited car out here. lol.

I witnessed a car burning in flames last night when going to meet a friend. It was just about 200 meters from the car when I, riding on my motor cycle, was signaled by a medium built guy to stop. At first I thought it might be another mugger as it was already about 10 pm and there are rarely any people on that road. But I slowed down and the guy screamed out not to go ahead as there is a car burning, fearing it might burst at any moment. I stopped and watched the blaze. It was mainly in the bonnet while some streaks of fire could be seen at the bottom of the car as well. For a moment I watched how serious it was. Was it by some miscreants or was it an accident? There were a host of other people and vehicles lined up at a safe distance while further frantic calls were being made by the same guy who signaled at me to stop other approaching vehicles. After a while I started at full throttle, wore my helmet and raced past the blazing car. At the same time when I was starting, a mini fire truck wailed beside me and parked just crossing the car. As I reached a possibly safe distance, I could imagine a sigh of relief in the watching small group.
Car Aflame
I returned back through the same road after some time and could see that the situation was back to normal. This time again, I stopped and walked near the vehicle to have a look at the damage. There were some 6-7 people with the car this time, 2-3 of them discussing possibly about the dealer of the car, damage compensation etc. On asking one guy standing beside, he told me that the engine just caught fire, possibly overheating or some electrical glitch somewhere.

The car was a brand new Tata Indica GLS. This was a live sight I had witnessed after reading stories of three such car fires in the local newspapers in last two months.

October 17, 2009 Posted by | General | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Special Apple Dosas with “Pain”

Heard that an apple a day keeps the doc away. What do you do if its Pain-Apples and especially when its called Painapple Special Dosa? Slapstickally comic but the restaurateur just overlooked it I guess. It was only later that they realized Pineapples would have been better than Pain-Apples .

PainApple Special
Wanna grab one?

July 3, 2009 Posted by | General | , , , | 1 Comment

Michael

Mikaeel he was at the age of 50, when he left the followers of his style of pop in a loss. It was reported that most of the community websites unavailable when the news broke out. Some were in shock and disbelief, some were heartbroken.

It was November last year that Michael Jackson had become Mikaeel, embracing Islam. In fact, most of the people in his reach went towards same faith. His songwriter David who became Dawud, his producer who turned from Phillip Bubal to Idris Phillips and his brother Jermaine.

He was black and yet he was white. It was probably this song “Black or White” that I first heard about MJ and started liking his songs thereafter and also those which were already present before but I didnt even hear of! As sort of his comeback to the stage after a long enough gap, his London show was eagerly awaited by millions of his fan followers but alas, sadly he couldn’t last till then. It’s a wait that is going to be a wait forever. He left a gap within all which will be felt for long now. It was supposedly the last of his performances.

He lived like a king – he was the king of pop, but he died in debt. The later part of his life went with a lot of media publicized controversies. He didn’t want to die young like Elvis, and 50 is well not young enough. The gods kept that part in mind I guess and has made it appear a bit mysterious as well.

Rest in Peace Michael alias Mikaeel.

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June 29, 2009 Posted by | General, Humanly | , , , , | 1 Comment

Mumbai.. Aftermath…A PERFECT LETTER TO PM

I was thinking about the recent Mumbai terror and wondering how do I put on my thoughts and then I came up with the post Mumbai…Terrorised Again!. At the same time I got a mail forward from one of my friends on the same topic. It didn’t get late for the news media to term this event 26/11 and also referred to as ‘India’s own 9/11‘. What the crap! Why relate this event in November to a situation that was completely different in the states? Whatsoever, our Prime Minister refused to comment initially saying he would speak publicly when its over. I am sure he didnt even dream that he will have to wait for 3 days. And then there was a speech where he said ‘Nobody would be spared’. Yeah right!

To this, instead of me expressing anything I thought it better to put up this letter to the PM by a certain Prakash B. Bajaj of Mumbai. Please note that I have not made any attempts at verifying the authenticity of this mail. The letter here is as was sent to me in the forwarded mail.
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Dear Mr. Prime minister

I am a typical mouse from Mumbai. In the local train compartment which has capacity of 100 persons, I travel with 500 more mouse. Mouse at least squeak but we don’t even do that.

Today I heard your speech. In which you said ‘NO BODY WOULD BE SPARED’. I would like to remind you that fourteen years has passed since serial bomb blast in Mumbai took place. Dawood was the main conspirator. Till today he is not caught. All our bolywood actors, our builders, our Gutka king meets him but your Government can not catch him. Reason is simple; all your ministers are hand in glove with him. If any attempt is made tocatch him everybody will be exposed. Your statement ‘NOBODY WOULD BE SPARED’ is nothing but a cruel joke on this unfortunate people of India….

Enough is enough. As such after seeing terrorist attack carried out byabout a dozen young boys I realize that if same thing continues days are not away when terrorist will attack by air, destroy our nuclear reactor
and there will be one more Hiroshima .

We the people are left with only one mantra. Womb to Bomb to Tomb. Youpromised Mumbaikar Shanghai what you have given us is Jalianwala Baug. Today only your home minister resigned. What took you so long to kick out this joker? Only reason was that he was loyal to Gandhi family. Loyalty to Gandhi family is more important than blood of innocent people, isn’t it?

I am born and bought up in Mumbai for last fifty eight years. Believe me corruption in Maharashtra is worse than that in Bihar . Look at all thepolitician, Sharad Pawar, Chagan Bhujbal, Narayan Rane, Bal Thackray, Gopinath Munde, Raj Thackray, Vilasrao Deshmukh all are rolling in money. Vilasrao Deshmukh is one of the worst Chief minister I have seen. His only business is to increase the FSI every other day, make money and send it to Delhi so Congress can fight next election. Now the clown has found new way and will increase FSI for fisherman so they can build concrete house right on sea shore. Next time terrorist can comfortably live in those house , enjoy the beauty of sea and then attack the Mumbai at their will.

Recently I had to purchase house in Mumbai. I met about two dozen builders. Everybody wanted about 30% in black. A common person like me knows this and with all your intelligent agency & CBI you and your finance minister are not aware of it. Where all the black money goes? To the underworld isn’t it? Our politicians take help of these goondas to vacate people by force. I myself was victim of it. If you have time please come to me, I will tell you everything.

If this has been land of fools, idiots then I would not have ever cared to write you this letter. Just see the tragedy, on one side we are reaching moon, people are so intelligent and on other side youpolitician has converted nectar into deadly poison. I am everything Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Schedule caste, OBC, Muslim OBC, Christian Schedule caste, Creamy Schedule caste only what I am not is INDIAN. You politician have raped every part of mother India by your policy of divide and rule.

Take example of former president Abdul Kalam. Such a intelligent person, such a fine human being. You politician didn’t even spare him. Your party along with opposition joined the hands, because politician feels they are supreme and there is no place for good person.

Dear Mr Prime minister you are one of the most intelligent person, most learned person. Just wake up, be a real SARDAR. First and foremost expose all selfish politician. Ask Swiss bank to give name of all Indian account holder. Give reins of CBI to independent agency. Let them find wolf among us. There will be political upheaval but that will better than dance of death which we are witnessing every day. Just give us ambient where we can work honestly and without fear. Let there be rule of law. Everything else will be taken care of. Choice is yours Mr. Prime Minister. Do you want to be lead by one person or you want to lead the nation of 100 Crore people?

Prakash B. Bajaj Chandralok ‘A” Wing, Flat No 104
97 Nepean Sea Road
Mumbai 400 036
Phone 98210-71194

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Comments and criticisms are welcome.

December 3, 2008 Posted by | General | , , , | 5 Comments

Pain and suffering

 

At some point of time, I am sure one or the other has searched for this term in their favorite search engines. As of this moment when this is being typed, if someone has tried that set of word using the largest search engine, then eight out of the first ten results would show about accidents and insurance claims arising out of an accident. I was a bit bewildered. According to the Wikipedia, another amazing repository for knowledge, “Pain and suffering” is the legal term for the physical and emotional stress caused from an injury. It serves as a set of collective words here.

I am no expert in pain dealing, but there’s more to pain and suffering.

My post on Pain was entirely about all the pain I had suffered on one unfortunate day. That however didn’t end then and there. I had to go through a surgery two days after that, during which of course I was under anesthetics, but the next few nights were utterly painful. Shots of pain killers still came but I stopped the nurses from injecting. I decided it was better to bear the lesser pain but not the pain killers any more.

Then the other day, I happened to watch the Edward Norton and Brad Pitt starrer movie “Fight Club” and I found some logic in few things in it. The movie is no doubt a wonderful one as is also apparent from its position in the IMDB top 250 listings.

There are pain, suffering, misery of so many kinds to which human beings try to bind their emotions but try to stay away at the same time. We fear pain. But what if one gets accustomed to all sorts of physical torments? Then it leads to fearlessness. Pain becomes a form of enjoyment once you are used to it. Well this enjoyment need not necessarily be the same form as is accepted in general. Imagine that as a form of ecstasy of a kick boxer who had gone through many rounds of fights, after the few or many blows to him or her by the opponents and finally emerged out victorious. That kick boxer would swallow all the blows, however hard they may be, down the throat and would begin to feel lively. But in the movie “Fight Club”, most of the injuries was to forget pain and to “know” that someday everyone was gonna die. And as one of the lines in the movie goes “What would you wish you’d have done before you died?” or put another way – “what would you like to do at this moment if you knew that you are going to die?” Would sound like a pretty insane question to the audience, but that’s a question I think one needs to ask to his or her true self most often if not everyday. Why? Because, the answer to that can give a better meaning to the life of that individual.

So what’s the essence of the matter? Pain and suffering are and had been there. But just as it depends upon how one views at a certain matter, it matters here as well. Whether one cries and gets carried away by the pain, or begins to enjoy it? That’s the perspective.

Nevertheless, the other form of pain – emotional, is much hard to tackle. A character in a very popular TV series of the present time says “First you show me that I can’t be hurt by any weapon and then you cut me deeper than any blade”. Physical pain heals with time but the trauma of an emotional one could last for as long as the soul lives. There had been many instances where one is hurt emotionally since time and again. And when it comes to the matter of love, the pain inflicted when betrayed is much more. That would remain fresh and volatile. Whatever one does, wherever one goes, a mere thought of the betrayal would always make a misery out of life. End to physical pain is to succumb to it – death. An emotional suffering on the other hand could lead to a harrowing end or may be there is no end to it at all. But as they say, may be “time heals everything”.

Going by the legal term, insurance claims can be made for “Pain and suffering” but that would deal only with the physical form, but it can never take care of the emotional but. Coming back to me, for long I have learned to accept pain. As much explains when I picked up this line for me “I am accustomed to pain”, as Frankenstein said.

To end with, I came across an amusing line that read, “As soon as you’re born you start dying, so you might as well have a good time!”

If there are any other perspective on this, just add in.

December 18, 2007 Posted by | concerns, General, Humanly | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment