Silly thoughts after watching ‘Stranger than fiction’
There’s this whole philosophy nowadays of “Do what you want in your life”, “All you have is your freedom, so your life is what you do with it, it’s your responsibility”, “Look for what really makes you happy and pursue it, don’t let anyone or anything stand in your way, not even your greatest fears or prejudices”. And I love it, I agree, I think it makes all the sense in the world. The problem appears -surprisingly!- when you put it into practice. You can only desire in this way *real* things. They can be almost impossible, it doesn’t matter, but they always have to be real. Like, standing on the Moon, or being a rockstar, or meeting the President… but you can’t desire -and hope to one day achieve- being a character in a novel, or being another animal, or having superpowers… It’s silly, but we’re really not THAT free.
When the CAT tool puts a bunch of spaces in every URL
You had me at “CAT tool” xD
When I’m working from home, singing and dancing as much as I want while translating
This was me, like, this very Saturday. It was a great, productive day xD
Modern Phobias, the art of identifying with the reader
One of my pieces of homework from my translation class was to translate a pair of “episodes” from Modern Phobias, a humorous book by Tim Lihoreau about fears everybody has experimented at least once. I enjoyed the task so much, it gave me the impression that the rest of the book would be worth reading. Such was the case, I found a second-hand copy in good conditions for less than 6 € in Amazon and, being my first purchase there, I didn’t think it twice!
So I finished it last week, and at the end I felt a little disappointed. Probably the best “episodes” where the ones in my assignment. Don’t misinterpret me –it certainly makes you smile, but not laugh.
I’ve been marking episodes with quotes because they’re not really episodes but sort of entries, each dedicated to a different phobia, as in a dictionary. Each entry consists of the name of the phobia, the meaning, a paragraph or two talking about its supposed history, offshoots, cures, etcetera, and etymological notes at the end.
As you can imagine, the more you see yourself depicted in the pages, the harder you will laugh. Me, I felt that with very little of them, like genviaphobia (fear of street pollsters) or visulibophobia (fear of seeing the film of a book). Most of them were either very trite or totally strange to me. And it’s not just about the choice of the so-called phobias but the development of some of them, which had much more to give than the author has taken advantage of. Sometimes I felt I or any of my friends could make better and longer jokes about these particular habits of the modern times.
Also, it didn’t help I had to get through a lot of cultural references I didn’t fully understand, as they require knowing a lot about the United Kingdom. But I hope to re-read it in the future when I know some more and feel the whole experience :)
On the other hand, one thing I enjoyed were the names in latin. Knowing a little latin will definitely make you appreciate more the book, because some words that appear in this language remain untranslated and that fact was actually quite funny.