Wednesday Whiteboard #2


Dotpoint 1: Twitter.

I’ve been ‘on’ Twitter for nearly 12 months. Recently, Twittering has hit the big time. The non-nerdy crowd has discovered Twitter. One of my favourite blogs, Neuroanthropology, had a fantastic article about Twitter. There’s a great little video clip linked to this blog post that sums up my thoughts on Twitter. Like one of the guys in the clip, I haven’t discovered the usefulness of Twitter. Why would anyone want to ‘follow’ me and hear about the profound mundanity (I know, Dr Jay, it’s not a word) of my existence:

I’m at work

I’m having a coffee

I’m picking a booger

I can’t log onto the database. I’ll check the news online instead

Where’s Wally* is walking down Bath Street

Riveting stuff, isn’t it? Furthermore, I can’t ‘Tweet’ the exciting bits like: ‘Bill and Frank have caught a goanna and we’re cooking it for lunch‘, or: ‘I’ve just found some human remains wrapped in bark‘, or:  ‘oh bugger, another flat tyre’ , because where I live, mobile phones stop working 30 km out of town.

Whilst I don’t think Twitter or Facebook are going to be the downfall of face-to-face human communication, grammar (apostrophes were being abused by morons everywhere long before Twitter arrived), or proper sentence construction (just think how many millions of kids out there read Harry Potter), I do agree that they encourage vapidity of the Paris Hilton kind, result in a loss of one-pointedness of the Buddhist kind and invoke a form of compulsive/obsessive communicative behaviour which will, no doubt, soon have its own classification in the DSM that psychologists use.

*Where’s Wally is the local bagman, a mentally challenged person who dresses in brightly coloured, mismatched clothing, which always includes a pair of striped, knee-hi socks. He is not homeless, and lives in a hostel just down the road from my office. I often say hi to him and try and engage him in conversation. More often than not, he’s just into small talk. Maybe I’ll take a photo of him one day.

Dotpoint 2: I really want a spiritual teacher, a guru, to keep me on track.

Lots of people will have a problem with my desire to find a proper guru, but others won’t. To me on my meandering path, guidance from  someone who’s been there, done that, who can make sense of the Dark Night of the Soul, who can suggest that you read X and practice Y is of great benefit. So I’m praying and asking for the opportunity to appear. I’m a-looking and I’ve put it out there, on the blog and to the universe (none of this should be interpreted as detracting from me doing the work to find a teacher). Maybe Pema Chodron will hear me and materialise in my town…

Dotpoint 3: Tourists in Alice Springs wearing Crocodile Dundee hats.

I wonder if it has occurred to tourists visiting Alice Springs that locals DON’T WEAR CROCODILE DUNDEE HATS!! This is not to single out foreign tourists, oh no. Australian tourists, especially Grey Nomads, buy these things and look like DORKS. If you’re thinking about coming to Alice Springs, don’t buy a stupid Crocodile Dundee hat. You will look like a complete knob whilst you’re here and when you go home, I assure you, you’ll never wear it again!

Dotpoint 4: What do you think about music in yoga classes?

Given that I’ve ‘grown up’ with Iyengar and Ashtanga yoga, I am not a huge fan of music in yoga classes. I’ve always found it distracts me from the mindfulness of the practice. So yes, I could be accused of being a purist and a yoga snob. My partner in the new yoga studio uses music in all of her classes as a soft background, which I’ve always resisted.

Recently, I decided to experiment with music in my own practice. I found that during restorative/yin practice, music can enhance the experience. Have others found this, or is this just my mind tuning out of the practice and into the music? Perhaps I should try the same practice with Sepulchure or Nick Cave in a suicidal mood and see if I get the same effect?


4 thoughts on “Wednesday Whiteboard #2

  1. I’m such a nerd, I now have two Twitter accounts – one personal, one professional. Sad, I know.

    As you know, I already have a Guru, so I don’t find your desire in that respect strange at all (actually, there’s very few desires people have that I find strange). In fact, I fully sympathise. The only comment I’ll make, is that I never ever wished for a teacher or a Guru or anything like that. I sincerely wished to know myself, and life, deeply. The rest turned up as it did. Its still turning up. As my Guru has said, when everything starts falling apart, just remember, this is what you asked for! When I listened to the recording where he’s talking about that very Dark Night of the Soul and he said that… I couldn’t help but laugh at myself. Still giggling, really.

    The hats sound funny. Don’t they notice everyone else is wearing the same hat and think themselves a little dorky? 😉

    Never been a huge fan of music in yoga class. But similarly, where I’m studying right now, they do it. I don’t mind it, but personally I’m still not a fan. Eh, whatever floats your boat!

  2. I experience the exact opposite with music. I want silence during restorative yoga, yin yoga, and meditation. Music adds such an energetic dimension to vinyasa classes and can even be nice as background music in an Iyengar class. One of my Iyengar teachers plays Bob Dylan all the time. Somehow we always end up in hanumanasana when he’s singing “how does it feel?” 🙂

  3. @Svasti – yes, I guess with music and yoga it is whatever floats your boat. I’m not sure if it’s because of the attachment I have with certain yoga traditions that I find it hard to enjoy music during yoga classes. As for the Crocodile Dundee hats… I just want to laugh. Similarly, people wear heavy-duty hiking boots to walk down Todd Mall which is exactly like walking down any other mall in a city anywhere in Australia.

    @Melissa, thanks for commenting on my blog. I can equate with the ‘How Does it Feel’ in Hanumanasana. The only time I’ve ever injured myself in a yoga class was during Hanumanasana. Several years ago, I pulled a tendon on biceps femoris right off the bone because I shuffled sideways on my mat and didn’t internally rotate my toes!

    How did I feel after that? No very good, I can tell you!

  4. oh Twitter… I resist you! lol. I agree that I also don’t see the usefulness of twitter… perhaps the ultimate of narcissism? hah.

    Music- I also tend to prefer a quieter environment, even a talkative instructor can be grating at times. I have been to classes where the instructor used soft music in the background the entire time… at moments when the outside world creeps into the studio (there’s a Bridge group in the room next to the studio!) music during savasana has been helpful. As soon as words come into play I’ve found that instead of meditating I’m listening to the lyrics.

    I think i agree with you- quiet for me is better. 🙂



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