Monthly Archives: January 2013

Copa Del Clasico

Have you been following the Copa Del Rey this year? Well, here’s what you would have noticed had you been watching: Real Madrid defeated Valencia in the quarterfinals to book a place in the semis. Barcelona had to contend with 5th place Malaga. It was a hard fought round but in the end Barca triumphed over Malaga to book a place in the semifinal stage of this tournament.
And yes you guessed right–now Barca will lock horns with Real Madrid in the semifinals. Action starts today by 2.55pm.
I believe that Barca have a very good chance of pulling out a win at the Bernabeu today because their able captain Iker Casillas is out because of injury. I think a few of their starters like Sergio Ramos, Pepe, Angel Di maria and Coentrao. However, Marcelo is back, and I am sure they’ll be giving this tie all the effort and seriousness that it demands. If Barca loses, then of course there is always the return leg. Barca should therefore work hard at winning or at least getting a draw here.
If Barca do not make silly and unguarded mistakes in the back, then I expect I victory there–at least 2-0 or 2-1.
Please,  for this encounter, Alexis Sanchez should sit this out. He has been shitty lately and I really don’t know why the man keeps falling to the floor with every contact. In my opinion, he should buckle up or he might find that he may be sidelined for a much longer time.
Here’s the lineup I would use:
Pinto, Dani Alvez, Pique, Puyol, Jordi Alba, Xavi, Sergio Busquets, Iniesta, Villa, Messi and Pedro. But of course this decision lies with the team manager.
I hope tomorrow’s match is not marred by bad calls, or that the beautiful game is marred by Real madrid’s well documented Rugby tactics whenever they are playing Barca. Let’s see what tomorrow brings.

Freewill: Answering The Critics

In this piece, I discuss once more with some atheists on whether there is freewill and whether freewill is destroyed by supernatural agency if there are instructions or recommendations ensuing from on high:

Commands operate with a disregard for free will, commands preempt the free agent and EXPECT an automated response in line with stimulus either reward or punishment. To claim God grants and thereafter issues a Command, implies God immediately withdrew the free will at the issuance of the command or else a conflict evolves.

Its impossible to believe rewards and punishments are ineffective at a free agent, with our modern knowledge on psychology; positive reinforcement, conditioning play a big role our psychological setup. We impulsively avoid pain. We seek out pain to gain greater pleasure. Our bodies and minds are pre-tuned.

Hence to claim our free will is outside the influence of the consequence of our actions, is ridiculous.

Kay 17 and Wiegraf:

There is a fundamental misunderstanding here of what freewill is. It is a misunderstanding that has been repeatedly echoed despite the fact that the error has already been addressed. Some of the misunderstanding stems unfortunately from your jaundiced paraphrasing of what I have said. The imprecision in articulating what you think I have said or perhaps the misapprehension of such is perhaps to blame here.
Freewill/freely willed actions/voluntary actions, I repeat, are not invalidated or rendered non-existent simply because there is a threat or a promise attached to their undertaking. The fundamental and categorical error that an atheist or a moral nihilist is making here is to draw a false equivalence between freewill on the one hand and freedom from the consequences of one’s actions on the other.
The concept of freewill simply posits that the conduct of human beings expresses personal choice and is not simply determined by physical or even divine forces. As free rational and moral agents, human beings possess the ability of their own will or intention or desireto effect or actualize any number of actions or goals. For instance, I can freely will or decide to stand up, or sit down, or hop on one foot, or sing a song in the shower, or turn the television on, or tell a lie, or help a neighbor in need, or poison another person’s drink etc. I can freely think and nurture these intentions and execute them if I so choose. In other words, I am not a cybernetic pre-programmed organism merely acting out a predetermined script or program. These freely willed actions of mine as anyone can see (and which in fact sensible atheists affirm) are not and do not need to be immediately and directly caused by any concatenation of noticeable physical forces. In other words, if I pick up a knife and proceed to stab another person in the back with the intent to kill, I cannot claim that my actions were completely outside my control or that some external physical forces ought to be blamed for my conscious rational decision.
If the free voluntary actions of human beings were really thought to be no more than the dictates of some personally removed agency, then there’d be no basis upon which to accuse anyone of wrongdoing; moral accountability or even moral culpability goes out the window. On such a view—such as might be espoused by a moral nihilist or a strong advocate of Darwinian naturalism—murder, rape and child abuse for instance would be morally neutral or perhaps morally permissible actions being that the persons committing such actions clearly exercise no control over these actions. They would merely be acting out some physical or naturalistic predetermined script being utterly captive to the same. Now, I suspect that no atheist is going to want to be thought of as lacking a sufficient moral barometer, and thus it is not surprising to read or hear atheists squeal in protest at any charge that the logical extrapolation of their worldview—the determinism inherent in unvarnished naturalism—would necessitate such demeaning conclusions.  The plain fact of the matter is that these are voluntary actions based on my own personal freewill.
However—and this is a noteworthy distinction—in as much as I have the freedom to will, purpose, aim, intend, contemplate or plot some course of action (notice how I am painstakingly delineating a difference here), I do not have and cannot demand to have a freedom from the consequence of that action.  This is the point of departure folks; it is precisely on this score that the atheist/nihilist gets it wrong. Actions have consequences and the consequences for our actions have to be faced. One’s freewill is not obviated simply by pleading that one’s freely willed actions ought not to carry any threat of punishment. Follow me as I attempt to expatiate on this.
Suppose that you designed a gigantic, intricate house. Also, assume that to deal with possible incidences of burglary you designed a secret chamber in which you kept bloodthirsty vicious hounds capable of ripping a man to pieces. At night, when everyone was safely tucked in, you would quietly let slip the dogs of ‘war’. In the morning, having completed the night watch, these hounds will crawl back into their secret chambers and you would lock them up again. Now, assume furthermore that you had a visitor whom you warned expressly not to go outside at night for whatever reason because you had vicious man-eating dogs on the prowl. Now here’s the question: does the visitor in this thought experiment have the free will to  obey or disobey the owner of the house as it regards not going outside at night?
It would appear that from your understanding, you imagine that the visitor in this thought experiment had inexplicably lost his freewill. That idea is unquestionably false. By what strange mechanism did the visitor in this example suddenly lose the ability to purpose, aim, intend, design, contemplate or plot a lovely night stroll into the woods at the back of the house? It is clear that he still has every freedom of the will to desire to venture outside the premises in clear contravention of the house owner’s directions. He might consider the consequence of such an ill-advised night stroll and of his own free will decide that it probably was not worth the effort. However, if he acts on this same freewill (which at no time was ever impeded) and freely decides to venture outside (possibly because he disbelieved the owner of the house), then he cannot upon seeing the hasty advance of bloodthirsty canines declare the housekeeper unjust on the grounds that his freewill was tampered with or preempted. He cannot declare that freewill ought to imply that he should be free of the direct consequence of his decisions and actions. That will be the height of crass buffoonery.
Again, if I tell a child not to put his hand into a fire because doing so would get him burned, he has every right to do so or not do so. It is his personal choice. What the unthinking atheist fantasizes about is to have an impractical state of affairs whereby he is absolved of or free of the consequences of his actions. Like a child who inflexibly sticks his fingers into an open flame in defiance of his parent’s admonition, the atheist wants a scenario where he is able to retrieve his finger from the flame and have it unburned as it naturally should. Or to press the point further home, the atheist or moral nihilist imagines that the concept of freewill is undermined or torpedoed by suggesting that a man who seriously intended to murder a roomful of children might be given pause by the realization that he would be imprisoned or possibly killed for going through with such an action.  It is clear that such a would-be mass murderer has absolutely no problem with willing, contemplating and even carrying out these actions (freewill) but he is definitely not entitled to thinking that he ought to be free of the consequences or ramifications of that action.

Therefore, whether we impulsively avoid pain, or instinctively hanker after pleasure, the fact is that such pain-minimizing or pleasure-maximizing personal indulgences speak only to the proper working of our homeostasis-seeking faculties; our desire for some sort of equilibrium. They do not dictate and cannot impose on any rational moral agent’s freewill. Like I pointed out earlier, it is abundantly clear that people can freely will and execute some actions DESPITE the possible threat of some negative consequence. In like manner, it is also evident that people can also freely will and desist from taking some action DESPITE the possible promise of some positive consequence. In all cases, it is patently absurd to suggest that such voluntary human actions (borne out of our libertarian free will) automatically become non-existent because some natural or divine agency has ordained some deleterious consequence for certain actions.
You’ll reap what you sow if not here then in the hereafter—whether anyone wants it to be so or not is I’m afraid immaterial.
Cheers.

Amazing Stunts

People can be awesome–yes indeed.

To salute the indomitable human spirit that drives us to relentlessly push hard till we succeed, I want to show you amazing feats of athleticism and raw skill. I am sure you will find this entertaining. Do you think there is anything on here that you could actually do? Highly doubtful, say I. Now, enjoy!

Help Me Get A Man Please!

In which a single 43 year old woman bemoans her unmarried status:

I know some people would want to nail me after reading just the headline but I feel this is getting out of hand. I clocked 42 last July and to be candid I’m not into any serious relationship.

I’m from South-South Nigeria, the first daughter out of 7 children. I hope you won’t feel offended as I would not further disclose my identity for obvious reason.

Just last year, our last born who works with a popular telecommunication company got married to her longtime boyfriend, leaving only me hugging ‘tubes and tyres.

I’ve gone for prayers in several churches; they promised me that my husband would appear in no distant time.

In fact, the last prayer house I went in a popular church, the man of God told me that ‘if he be a man of God, before the year runs out, my dream man would appear.

Another one told me I was the architect of my predicament, saying that I’ve missed the opportunity.

When I was in my mid 20s, I had many ‘toasters’ but they were never my dream men.

I used to think my kind of guy was the tall, dark and handsome one. Preferably banker, but now they are not forthcoming.

I was in a relationship with an ex footballer but I dumped him when I could no longer cope with his kind of person.

Now, I’m even ashamed of living in the same house with my parents at my age.

Please advise…

I have to say that this story or account is far too common to be waved off cavalierly—granted that in many cases the desperate women firing off these sorts of Damsel-In-Distress calls are for the most part in their 30s and not in their 40s as in this case. But of course, the stories are usually the same:- girl cannot understand why she is incapable of attracting a man or rather attracting a man who is willing to walk down the aisle; girl tries to change everything about herself including her physical appearance; girl might even suddenly discover some phantom spirituality hanging out predominantly in church circles if only to lead some unsuspecting fellow into giving her a moment’s consideration; girl finally pulls her hair off in desperation and begins to try a series of non-conventional and bizarre paths in order to secure a mate. Indeed it is the plot or subtext of so many soaps and home movies.
At any rate, what can one tell this clueless 43 year old? Let us go over the facts:
  • A.     She informs us that when she was young, in her 20s no less, she had many guys who were interested in her but they all were not good enough for her.
  • B.     All her siblings are now happily married and she is the only one left in her parent’s home.
  • C.     She had consulted some “prayer” churches and received some assurances that change was on the way but all to no avail.
It is painful to say this but you would think that any woman past her sexual and reproductive prime (I’ll peg this age at 30—it really should be 25), should already be grown up enough and mentally mature enough to realize that real life does not and can never mirror the world of her youthful fantasies.  I heap the blame on unrealistic Hollywood movies—nay I heap the blame squarely on these sorts of women and the equally unrealistic expectations nurtured in them by the sycophantic, deceptive people around them. Otherwise, why would any sensible woman older than 15 continue to think that all she needs to do is to wait and somehow some tall, handsome and wealthy prince would beat a path to her door to seek her hand in marriage? The pathetic aspect of this is that it is not like the women who delude themselves into waiting for “Mr. Perfectly Handsome Moneybag” are themselves pinnacles of physical beauty, dazzling sophistication and charm—heck, it is not even as if they usually possess the ordinary sociable, inviting and pleasant personalities which might even serve to lure the object of their vain fantasies. So why in the world would they think that the adorable men of their nightly fixations are not busy lusting after and hastily pursuing the women who have the qualities and attributes that they manifestly lack? Has she never sat down to calculate the probability of meeting the man of her dreams given the sample of real life eligible men in her social circle? Has she even contemplated the probability of not only meeting such a man but also of being the unique member of the opposite sex that this “tall-dark-and-handsome” would automatically and naturally gravitate towards?
How in the world does the woman in this piece not sit down to radically re-assess her priorities the very day she turned 30, 33, 35 let alone 40? For her own sake, since it was not explicitly stated, one hopes that someone talked a good deal of commonsense into her to help beat back her unrealistic expectations. One seriously hopes or rather expects that now, long after she has passed her sexual and reproductive peak, and consequently of no practical utility for any man looking to start a family, she has finally learned not to be too picky. This should be a cautionary reminder to some of these young women who have their noses buried in the clouds looking or waiting for the advent of some charismatic, wealthy, Young Turk to sweep her off her feet and propose to her.
The truth which has continued to elude such women is that women have a shelf-life: at those younger ages when they are at the height of their physical looks and beauty, and ostensibly at the height of their reproductive vitality, is usually the time when the men would come.  Some of the men of course would come for relationships; some will come for the sex. It is therefore incumbent on women to start at that time (no matter how young they may think they are or how much time in the world they may feel they have) to begin to lay serious groundwork for a future married life—if at all they have any desire to be married. This is the time to take a sober look at one’s choices to see who at the time represents one’s realistic best choice of a deep meaningful long-term relationship or possible marriage. It is the time to be mature, emotionally and mentally available to explore a meaningful relationship with a serious-minded fellow. It is the time to strategize about how to get married and then go back to school (if it eventually comes to that).  This is because you have a future goal or destination in mind (i.e. marriage or a committed meaningful long-term relationship) and the dating market as you will invariably come to discover, throws some stiff challenges constantly. And so in a short while really—indeed before she starts to realize it as she is pursuing that career—she will sit up after she has clocked 30 and realize that all the men who were flocking to her like butterflies to nectar have mysteriously and rapidly disappeared. They may not have disappeared because the woman in question got physically more repulsive; indeed it might even be the case that the woman might have gotten a career and might have shed some pounds as she thinks herself finally ready to dive into the dating pool. The difference at that time, like I pointed out, is that those ordinary Joes who were serious about marriage and raising a family as they tried to woo little Miss “I’m-too-good-for-you” will already have been married with 3 or 4 children; or they will look at her and consider her rather too OLD for anything meaningful assuming they were still single.
But then those of you who are still in their early 20s may protest and say that 32 is not too OLD or you may point at a few people you know who got married long after people wrote them off as being too old for marriage. Do you honestly want my reply to that? Well then, my response is simple: May that fate be your portion then.  Please say Amen. Seriously, if you are going to disregard commonsense and the wisdom garnered from ages of constantly affirmed socio-sexual dynamics in favor of some forlorn hope grounded on someone’s anomalous ‘success’ in getting a man long after she was past her sexual and reproductive prime, then by all means: “have it your way.” For good measure wait till you are 40 and begin only thento search—I’m sure everyone will be keen on seeing how successful you eventually become.
Secondly, after Miss 43 has seen to it that she is not building castles in the air with regard to the man of her marital preference I will strongly urge her to move out of her parent’s house. At 43, she should be pretty much independent and less tied to her parent’s apron strings. One might even ask rhetorically if it was not her pursuit of her career and education that made her lose sight of another important milestone in a woman’s life. If so, then at least one expects that she did not lose doubly in not having any source of livelihood. Therefore, if she has a job and can fend for herself, she needs to be on her own—if need be in a place far removed from her hitherto unproductive environment—showing that she is not only capable of realizing the goals she set for herself but that she potentially has something to bring to the table for any man who might be led to disregard her current unmarried estate to step forward. By staying in her father’s house, she’ll merely be hindering her chances of success by feeding a malicious rumor mill especially when anyone can easily point to and recollect that all her sisters are now married and safely in their husband’s homes. She needs a clean break from her familiar surroundings therefore I’ll encourage her to move to a different city or state and rededicate her life to the passions or purposes she once cherished. It is often the case that when men see a hardworking older but unmarried woman they may be impressed with her work ethic and her devotion to the things she calls her own. This has been known in the past to have dramatically increased a woman’s chances of getting fresh albeit more seasoned suitors.
Lastly—and this needs to be taken very seriously—she should immediately cease and desist from running from spiritual church to spiritual temple or shrine seeking for supernatural remedies. This is in my opinion the silliest idea. I seriously do not understand why sensible people feel like they need supernatural intervention to successfully establish a relationship with someone else. For starters, most of the people peddling these spiritual solutions are consummate charlatans; they are wide-eyed Chaucerian frauds who will merely spirit away your money and resources. Secondly, running around trying all sorts of daft spiritual solutions is a surefire way of unwittingly exposing oneself to the eventual possession and manipulation of malevolent spiritual entities or demons. Furthermore, everyone needs to take a step back and realize that reason and math dictates that everyone may not necessarily find a husband or wife. There is no precise 1:1 correspondence ratio between the numbers of male births to the numbers of female births or between the numbers of eligible bachelors to the numbers of eligible spinsters. One can reasonably conclude based on some rough inspection of incarceration rates, murder rates, or even death rates that not every woman will get married; let alone to the bedazzling Adonis of her fantasies.
Based on the foregoing, the woman in the opening piece needs to address her mind to the real possibility that she may not find a husband. That possibility should not be viewed as a curse, a defect, and a thing of shame or a badge of dishonor. The honest truth is that for some people, no matter what they do, marriage is not in the cards for them. This should not mean therefore that their lives ought to be anything less satisfying or fulfilling. As is often the case, the main reason why she is suddenly desperate to be married could be that her maternal instincts which were previously ignored or suppressed are now dealing vicious kicks to her emotional and cognitive centers with forceful regularity. If that be the case, she should adopt a baby to mother and lavish her love on—she does not need to wait for a husband to do this. After all, if she somehow gets married the very next day, it is abundantly possible that she has reached menopause. Furthermore, as we all know, the chances that a child born to a woman in her 40s may come out deformed or plagued by autism or Down syndrome is exponentially increased.  Any man willing to marry a 43 year old woman has his own baggage and thus will likely not bother about the fact that the woman already had a son or daughter she was raising.
Nevertheless, if the woman in this example works on her interpersonal skills, radically disabuses herself of her previous pie-in-the-sky ideals and wholeheartedly devotes herself to some passion or vocation then in no time a suitor appropriate for her circumstance will come. If after 5 years of such consistent search nothing happens, I’ll simply encourage her to focus her energies into being the best mother a woman can possibly be.

2013 Conference Championships

Today by 3 pm  the battle for the NFL Conference Championships will kick off  to determine who will play in the 47th Superbowl. The NFC contenders will be San Francisco 49ers and the Atlanta Falcons while the AFC contenders will be the Baltimore Ravens and the New England Patriots later by 6:30 pm. As it is I have no dog in this fight, and to be perfectly honest, all 4 teams are amazing as far as I am concerned. Therefore I find myself in a bind trying to decide which of these teams to support for the Superbowl.
I have to point out that I have been seriously impressed with how the Ravens have continued to win in the post-season when reason says they ought to have been eliminated by now. Another thing, the New England Patriots might turn out to be their biggest challenge so far. If they manage to beat the Patriots, then they are poised to win it all. The Ravens will come into this game as the underdogs but they have shown remarkable resilience thus I would not be surprised if they manage to pull out a win. On the other hand, Tom Brady is very hungry for another SuperBowl ring having been frustrated in recent times when all bets were on the Patriuots to win it all. We shall see how these two fair today.
As for the 49ers-Falcons clash, anything really can happen. I am slightly tipping the 49ers to win but like I said, it may go down to the wire.
Who are you rooting for?

Colin Stokes: How Movies Teach Manhood

I think you may enjoy this.

TD Jakes At Jericho City

Inside the Auditorium: Jericho City of Praise
Evangelist TD Jakes was invited to and came to Jericho City of Praise in Maryland on January 4, 2013 to hold a special  New Year-welcoming service. A friend invited me to come along and I agreed, if for nothing else, to usher in the year in as great a manner as possible. I had always admired TD Jakes from afar having never seen him live or up close. It turns out however that a lot of people in the DMV area apparently got the same invitation I received.
That evening as we drove out to the location near the Redskins’ Stadium in Landover Maryland, there was wall-to-wall traffic. At some point, i really considered going back home as it seemed that there was just no way the massive fleet of cars headed to the location will be able to be properly situated in time for the service. At any rate, I am glad that I stuck it out – I was finally able to park the car and walk to the massive auditorium where the action was taking place. The choir was ministering and shortly afterwards Pastor TD Jakes delivered a most rousing and life-changing message; his message was just the right message for the hour.
What? You want me to tell you what the title of the message was? I am sorry but I didn’t write it down so I can’t state it accurately. You want a brief summary of his message? LOL, you should have come there and experienced it yourself. It is basically about how to position oneself to maximally benefit from God’s intended blessings for one’s life. Seriously, this is better experienced than explained.
At any rate, given the generally intense and somewhat chaotic series of events, my friend was able to get a few pictures with her blackberry. I apologize beforehand for the poor quality of these pictures. but they are better than nothing. I hereby give you a few pictures that she managed to capture.

http://www.flickr.com/apps/slideshow/show.swf?v=124984

Charity Begins

In Mali, away from home, if you were to ask President Jonathan Goodluck. Here, check this out:

ENUGU-Chief of Air Staff Air Marshal Alex Barde, said the Nigerian Air Force will commence deployment of Nigeria war planes to check the activities of jihad fighters in Mali on Thursday morning.

Barde who paid his maiden visit to Enugu Air Force Unit, Wednesday, said the action was in compliance to President Jonathan’s directive that military contingent be sent to assist the country to contain the jihad fighters in Mali.

Said he; “As I speak to you now our air planes have arrived in Port-Harcourt; in-fact I’m on my way to Rivers State now and tomorrow morning we are beginning our deployment to Mali and that’s what I am going to witness.

“I am going there to bid them a sort of farewell and go-and-fight-well greetings as they depart.

“We expect them to do what Mr. President directed that we do; he has directed that we should go and assist Mali in repelling the jihad fighters there because you know that if they finish with Mali the next thing will be to come to Nigeria.

“So we are going there to fight them and also protect our borders.

It is usually baffling to me the way Nigerian governments seem to want to swagger and show off to other countries when the pathetic fact is that they cannot meet their responsibilities to Nigerians at home. I call it a special case of charity beginning from the street before it gets to the home. In brazen shamelessness, Jonathan Goodluck is currently sending away about 1200 Nigerian troops to Mali to go to fight and contain the jihad fighters threatening to destabilize the peace. Ordinarily, this may look like a powerful and symbolic action for peace on the West African subcontinent. It might even suggest something statesman-like about the president, so why would anyone oppose such an action?
Well, the painful fact is that if there is any government in the West African region that desperately needs to worry about containing the meddlesome and destructive actions of Islamic insurgency it is precisely the Nigerian government headed by Jonathan Goodluck. Time and again, we have read with sadness in our hearts how the Nigerian government has been overwhelmed by the carnage and bloodshed visited upon innocent citizens by the mercenaries working for Boko Haram. Openly defiant—daring the government to do their worst—these Boko Haram actors have continued to visit mayhem on unsuspecting Nigerians with mindless impunity.
So you would expect that Jonathan would throw the strength and resources of the military, paramilitary and the police into fishing out, isolating and destroying these terrorists, right? After all, if he could muster the strength and the willingness to send Nigerian troops to go and fight for the peace and stability of Mali, it can only mean that he has mastered or excelled at the art of using Nigeria’s supposedly superior military tactical force in quelling or repelling the guerrilla antics of some home-based Islamic radicals/extremists—is that not a fair assumption? Of course it is. The surprising answer is that this is sadly not the case at all.
As often as another wave of religiously inspired Islamic fundamentalism manifests itself in the form of wanton destruction of lives and property, our swaggering president would be nowhere to be found. Days later, depending on the severity of the carnage, we may be treated to some tepid response consisting of mealy-mouthed promises of action which are promptly forgotten after they are made. And so, like mafia kingpins, the reign of homegrown terrorism continues, without any overwhelming show of government opposition. Every now and then, a few dispensable nonentities are caught and paraded by the police and the media houses as masterminds of terror—perhaps to impress upon the gullible public the idea that the authorities are leaving no stones unturned in their efforts to stem the tide of terror.
So there you have it: Charity, as far as our president is concerned, begins abroad. His record at home when it comes to tackling jihad fighters is abysmal, but he has absolutely no scruples about sending Nigerian soldiers to other countries to wage war against local apostles of terror.

Bunichat Discussions: When Sparks Fly! (Prologue)

As I mentioned in one of my earlier posts, I have come across a lot of different personalities and characters in the Bunibuni chat room. There is something unique about our Bunibuni chat room where people can see and hear each other—the interactions become very real. As anyone who has spent any length of time in chat rooms would readily attest, many chat rooms out there are really little more than directionless aggregations of total strangers forced to share a chat space for a short while before they go about their regular businesses. In ordinary chat rooms, most of the interactions are written. A participant would type up some contribution and post it hoping to receive some feedback or a response. If someone reads it and responds, then some discussion can be had. Otherwise, as new chatters can readily tell, it is possible for no one to read or bother replying things that one might type up and post.
It is therefore hardly surprising to discover that in such chat rooms (where one cannot see or hear other participants) there is a level of detachment that a participant often feels with respect to the other members of the chat room. To many people in such faceless and voiceless chat rooms, chatting is just some abstraction; something impersonal or far removed from real life social interactions albeit that from time to time as people continue to converse by means of typewritten text on screen, the degree of estrangement or anonymity begins to dwindle. Some may even wind up trading phone numbers or their personal pictures in a bid to get to know or understand their interlocutor more clearly. At any rate, the anonymity, aloofness or detachment that is usually the case for users of most chat rooms has the effect of coarsening the discourse—why indeed would one be mindful of the way one addressed some ‘moniker’ on the screen? After all, when one logs off, it is assumed that one instantly forgets the brief and usually directionless exchanges there. It is therefore hardly surprising to notice the deplorable, uncivil and decadent prattle that make the rounds in these festering conversational cesspools where there are no rules or enforcers to check against the vagaries of irresponsible unbridled speech.
This was not the case in the Bunibuni chat room when it began. Bunibuni chat room had a very important feature which was not usually found in many traditional online chat rooms—i.e. one can see and hear one’s fellow discussants. This feature injected some vitality into the discussions there. The interactions no longer consisted of emotionless and powerless words on a screen which may only derive their force from some reader’s understanding and disposition. In our Bunibuni chat room, the laughter was real; the jokes even more hilarious; the personal anecdotes narrated were endearing and heartwarming; the friendships forged were genuine; a person’s true self effortlessly shone through. It was because one could see and hear others in this room that we also had to make sure the atmosphere in the room remained convivial, familial and civil. When you get to see, hear and know more about people—as the room afforded us the opportunity to do—any abuse of, careless speech against, or gossip regarding the active members of our Bunibuni family thus acquired real force and potency. Such chat or social improprieties had the power to silence people; make them stop chatting, or worse make them stop getting on their cams or mics. For that reason, we took prompt and decisive action against people who at the time seemed to revel in hurling insults at the cherished members of our chat room.
In hindsight, I can say that this policy served us well. Bunibuni became a room where serious interactions happened and people were not afraid to express themselves. Nevertheless, as in all things human, as more and more people joined the Bunibuni family there always arose issues that separated or divided people, and on which considerable emotional energy was spent. It did not help matters when people who already knew of our room rules and policy disregarded such to openly harass or insult. It became a tricky situation for admins to separate malicious invectives and dissocial commentary from a simple spat or dispute between friends or acquaintances in the very least. It became a delicate affair to separate the common and old-fashioned ribbing such as one might expect in large company and downright bilious exchanges. It didn’t even help that some accused the admins of partisanship when the admins merely sought to protect the regular and well-known members of the Bunibuni family against the unnecessary and unwarranted attacks of the lesser known or altogether unknown (and possibly name-changing) few.
Be that as it may, discussions and interactions have continued and will continue in Bunichat even though the moderating standards have been relaxed considerably. People will continue to mingle even though the admins are no longer as stern as they used to be. Such a precipitous decline in moderating standards was not without its sad unintended effects—there has been a huge reduction in peer-to-peer interactions; what was once an oasis of mature deliberations have been marred by months and years of puerile peevishness, crude exchanges, and vicious gossip.  Many simply abstained from chatting since doing such only served to heighten their blood pressure and anxiety; others moved on to other things since the spirit of camaraderie that once enveloped the room seemed to have been irretrievably lost.
However, I am of the opinion that all is not lost. Unless the room is closed permanently, I still believe that with the passage of former stars, the room will secure new members. I am not one who seeks for multitudes and so, I am okay with the idea that the room might continue to experience a cathartic purge to the extent that it returns to a state where there may be only a few well-meaning friends communicating as convivially as had been the tradition in times past.

So Where Is Mr. Right Guy?

One of the reasons why women get frustrated with men in the dating and relationship market is because they quite clearly do not know what men are often looking for in women nor indeed how to best position themselves to attract the sort of guys they want. If you look out there today, there seem to be too many women out there seeking for and not finding male partners. Obviously, the reason for this is not that there are no more men, nor is it that all the good men a woman can obviously be with have all been taken. The problem is simple—it is a marketing issue. There are too many women who just do not know how to put their best foot forward.

Before I go on, let me point this out. In the world today, many young women are bombarded with different and sometimes contrasting messages from their pals, television, magazines etc. on steps to take to increase their market value. They are inundated with tips on how to secure the so-called perfect man/date; what things to do to make oneself sexually more appealing; what steps to take to make it more likely for a man to propose etc. The list is endless—women are constantly being pulled in all directions on the issue of dating and relationships. It is not surprising therefore to discover that an alarming number of women have self-esteem and insecurity issues whether they care to admit it or not. Why would they not worry constantly when they see the nigh-impossible standards of beauty that women have to aspire to nowadays? Why will women not be anxious when they see the lengths their fellow women would go to in the name of beauty? It turns out however that when it comes to serious long-term relationships and marriage (as opposed to the casual flings or one-night stands), there may be a whole different dynamic at work.
Ladies, here are a few things to consider:
Aeveryone has flaws, everyone has some talent or gift. There is no Mr. or Ms. Perfect. One man/woman’s trash is another’s treasure. You can count on this—no matter how tall, pretty, beautiful, confident, charming, well-behaved, educated, sophisticated and sweet you might be, there will always be someone who does not fancy you at all; as a matter of fact, there will be many who obviously do not see you the way you think you ought to be seen. This is not because these men are blind or homosexual—it is simply because they have other attributes or qualities that attract them which you might not have or have in a sufficiently recognizable proportion. So quit trying excessively to be appealing or attractive. Your attractive qualities are usually those attributes that come to you so naturally that they don’t have to be forced. It just radiates through without your conscious effort. For example, if you have a pretty smile, and you smile constantly with or without external pressure or prompting, some guy will notice this readily especially if such a guy is naturally drawn to pretty smiles. If smiling does not come naturally to you therefore you don’t have to wear a plastic smile to be seen as good-natured or pleasant. It will look forced and obviously not genuine. More than likely, any guy who is genuinely attracted to something in you isn’t going to mind too much about the flaws you are trying so hard to conceal.
It follows therefore that one reason why many women do not seem to be making romantic connections with guys, or actually getting into relationships is because they have not figured out their most basic and most natural attractive feature to emphasize it. They do not seem to realize that beyond the initial pull of say a pretty face, or well-set knockers, or the occasional shapely derriere, there is more to the intricate dance of mate selection as far as guys are concerned. There is only so much a pretty face, boobs, ass or a polite but brief introductory greeting will get you as far as dating is concerned—and guys who are looking for something serious as opposed to just sowing their wild oats are going to be looking for some attribute that seals the deal. Women who are truly familiar with their core attractive attribute and accentuate such attributes have absolutely no problems in finding men who are willing to enter into meaningful long-term relationships or even propose to them.
B—ladies, real men are not overly impressed with your educational achievements. This may come as a shocker to many younger women nowadays. Let’s take a look at this. Ever since women were allowed to go to school and be as educated as the menfolk or let into the workforce, the trend has been that more and more women (when compared to men) are getting the degrees and the higher certifications in the various universities and institutions of higher learning. The trend is such that more and more women are getting educationally superior to the menfolk and thus beginning to command more pay. This is already the situation in many homes or relationships where it is readily noticeable that women are earning as much if not more than the men they are in a relationship with. So what’s wrong with this? There is absolutely nothing wrong with a woman getting a proper education but when it comes to inter-sexual relations, men for the most part are not necessarily drawn or attracted to highly educated women. As a matter of fact, if a highly educated woman really wants to increase her shot of being in a committed relationship, she has to dramatically de-emphasize her academic achievements and magnify other appealing attributes she has. This has been observed times without number and I suppose anyone can come up with some explanations why this seems to be the case.
Now, lest I be misunderstood, I am not saying that men are necessarily looking for uneducated, unpolished village-girl types to get into relationships with (even though there are men precisely looking for these). Furthermore, the point I am making is not that men attempting to pick up or date highly intelligent women cannot recognize or appreciate intellectual and witty banter. The point is that observations has shown that all too often, highly intelligent women lack a lot of other attractive qualities and so even the men who might be intellectually gifted enough to engage them in personally gratifying and intellectually stimulating discussions will invariably wind up considering or treating such women as friends or colleagues rather than as candidates for their amorous concerns. If you are in the habit of citing your doubtlessly impressive academic credentials to potential dates or prospective boyfriends or suitors, do not be surprised if they suddenly begin to beat a path to another woman’s door.
(To be Continued..)
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