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13 febrero 2013 3 13 /02 /febrero /2013 14:12

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have my sciatic nerve pinched and once a week now and every two days previously  I have a physiotherapist’s  treatment. My physiotherapist is a very professional one,  she works for the Barça women’s team and I thought  she could  have a clear opinion  on how business is affecting  sport.  On Tuesday I had my weekly session and I took advantatge of the situation to ask her opinion  on sports being  a bussiness or not.

I thought that she would be very clear and straight to begin with, but she wasn’t. She just said sports  shouldn’t be a business but unfortunalely are  as it happens to be in all other sides of life or economics . It shouldn’t  be, she said, because some of the players are the models to follow by youngsters but taking into account that people like Messi started with nothing playing barefoot in Argentina, just being specially gifted for football,  nowadays he deserves whatever he has got and to live life to the full.

I was confused by her answer and I thought that she had lost the sense of proportion and had a double standard because I mentioned that it was not fair that football players like Messi as they came from very poor background should be very careful with their earnings and not turn a blind eye or have a double standard in appearing on media advertising such and such comercial product because sports shouldn’t be a bussiness.

                                                                                                                             Núria Cornet

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13 febrero 2013 3 13 /02 /febrero /2013 14:07

 

Our life style has changed in recent years and maybe it is mainly because of the technological and market developments. If I had to chose any of the most relevant  development s I would chose the washing machine and the Internet.

To cut it short I do not see any negative impact of the invention of the washing machine but thinking it over twice maybe I see one negative impact in both cases.  I will clarify this later on but let us begin with the washing machine.

Washing machines were no doubt invented much before the Internet was available for the públic. 

Ancient civilizations cleaned their clothes by pounding them on rock or rubbing them with abrasive sands and washing the dirt away in local streams.

In my opinion, rotary washing machines are the most important domestic devices invented or the housewifes most desired. Thanks to washing machines mainly women at the time when they appeared and men and women nowadays were and are liberated from hand washing linen and have much more time for far less rewarding tasks. 

One of the rewarding  tasks I see is that today I have been to look up on the Internet when both devices were invented. And guess what if by now you still do not know: In case I had no chance of going to the Internet directly from my home computer I could not have done today’s washing because I would have had to go to the local Library to find the desired data.

So, copied and pasted with no more effort and thanks to Mr. Google and Wikipedia I can say that the history of the Internet began with the development of electronic computers in the 1950s. The public was first introduced to the Internet when a message was sent from computer science Professor Leonard Kleinrock's laboratory at University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), after the second piece of network equipment was installed at Stanford Research Institute (SRI). This connection not only enabled the first transmission to be made, but is also considered to be the first Internet backbone. This began the point-to-point communication between mainframe computers and terminals, expanded to point-to-point connections between computers and then early research into packet switching.

These are the positive impacts of the Internet and the washing machines and the negative are a lack of face-to-face communication which in the Internet could be more or less solved through Skype or other programs but in the case of pur ancestors and mainly women the possibility of not going to the river to clean dirty linen cut out their day-to-day chats with other women and communicating out of home doing this “unrewarding” domestic work.

 

Núria Cornet.                                                                                                                25th. Jan. 2013

 

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12 junio 2012 2 12 /06 /junio /2012 11:09

                                         

 

   I’m living by the beach. I see the sea from my window and this makes me happy and calm. I couldn’t live for a long time in a place where there is neither sea nor lake nor a big river. Water has accompanied me all my life. Maybe I’m a fish, who knows. Actually scientists say that life started in the sea.


  Though I lived for a while in cities where I could neither see the sea nor feel it, its smell, its noise, look at the storms and admire them, see the different colours. Something was lacking and as soon as I could, I went to meet my beautiful sea. It doesn’t matter if it is the Mediterranean, the North Sea or even Lake Ontario.


   My maritime compulsion made me choose somewhere by the sea to establish myself. And here I am, living by the beach.


   However there are problems about living by the beach.


Other people like myself want to enjoy the beach, my beach, but this is a public beach and I have to share it.  As I don’t like sunbathing and I go to the beach to dive, to put my head under the water and say hello to the sea, on my way to the water I have to put up with families with transistors and loud music, children playing with the sand and all kind of week-enders that have driven a few kilometers to get a tan. It’s their right.


   Summer is arriving, I’ll be working hard but I’ll not dismiss having a swim when I finish work and saying hello to my beach, even if there are still in late afternoon lots of people that have not returned home and are relaxing and lying in the sand.

 

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12 junio 2012 2 12 /06 /junio /2012 11:06

  

Hordes of tourists were queueing to enter the Alhambra. It was extremely hot and we didn’t have a hat to protect our heads from the ultraviolet rays. We just left the pavement café and the quaint streets surrounding the city of Granada forgetting  to take along with us a big bottle of water, plain water. We had enough beers though.


We were privileged because we had some days vacation in mid May. This was the good news. The bad side of our trip was the groups of tourists. Not because we do not like tourists. On the contrary, tourism is a very good sector to be looked after in Spain  in these days of economic crisis. It was only because they were a nuisance.


Maybe the foreign tourists , mainly pensioned people, came to the beautiful gardens of the Alhambra looking,  as we did, to get out from the haphazard modern development. But the shiny coaches and even a double-deck bus with the Union flag painted parked in a perfect row were for us a violation of good taste and to the Generalife Gardens.

Like the Northen pensioned people, we were trying actually to escape from the soaring office blocks and the traffic jams of a big city. We were living in the busy streets near Madrid’s Plaza de España and every day passing through the overhead expressway. So our days in the ancient Al Andalus meant a relief.


Granada was the chosen paradise.  No noise pollution, no traffic jams, apart from the concentration of coaches. A Muslim and Christian crucible. In these days of Islamic demonization history could give us a clue as to how to prevent wars and hate.


Trying to follow the best   path of Al Andalus, after Granada we headed to the Caliphate of Cordoba. We drove to Cordoba and visited the Mezquita. 

 

The ancient Mezquita de Córdoba has nowadays the eclesiastic name of  Catedral de la Asunción de Nuestra Señora and has been declared World Heritage together with the historical centre of the city itself.  

In 1523 Christians built a renaissance basilica  in the very centre of the Muslim building. Today it is Cordoba’s most important monument as well as that of the whole andalusí’s architecture.

 

Al Andalus and the Mezquita de Cordoba left us a message of coexistence and how to live together without wars and hate. Besides the wonder of the buildings, gardens and landscape this was the most important impression I got from that trip and I keep remembering it when I watch the news.

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17 mayo 2012 4 17 /05 /mayo /2012 11:00


 

It’s a tricky question for an exercise. The risk questionnaire we had last Monday in the class was asking  “Have you ever been out with someone you met on the Internet”. We were supposed to work in groups and interview one another. So I did. When it was my answer time I accepted the threat and took the risk.


I chickened out when I was about to speak and  thought for myself, “you’d better say no, never” but I weighed up the pros and cons and decided that it was worthwhile  saying yes so that I could see the effect of taking the risk.

Thinking that this kind of exercises are getting close to an Alcoholics Anonimous session  I took my answer as a challenge and I gave them my little history forgetting all the embarrassment .


I wanted to start by a “once upon a time” but I just said: ”one day I was at home on my own feeling miserable and remembering the quite life I was having some years ago married and with a child but when this  day-to-day fairy tale life disappeared I had to take some action and try to be as much happy as possible living alone.


 At nights sleeping properly was difficult and I got bored of reading my book in my sweet time. For a change, one night  I sat down in front of my computer and started dating on the Internet. And there he was, Mr. Something was looking at me from his best photo taken. I don’t remember now what nickname he was using. He was American. He must still be, of course, very straightforward and looking attractive from his still image.


 We met the next morning for a coffee, and that was all, I haven’t  seen him again.

My colleagues in the class didn’t blink while I was talking,  they paid a lot of attention to the story but, no need to say,  I invented the end.

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17 mayo 2012 4 17 /05 /mayo /2012 10:55


 

I was confused before starting to put black and white an idea on what is art for me. I looked it up in the Internet to see an official definition.

Mr Google and Mrs Wikipedia, better the last one, think that art is generally understood as any activity or product made by human beings with aesthetic or communicative purpose through which  people can express ideas, emotions of a general view of the world and all this with the means of plastic arts, lingüístic, sound, a mixture of them and many others

And Wikipedia goes on and on about the origins of this latin word.

I like writing and this is what I do for a living. My writing is journalistic, not literary and I don’t consider it any kind of art maybe because I do it professionally. Nevertheless I write to communicate and I try to do it as nicely and attractively possible for  the readers. For, is that art, no it isn’t.

But let us think for a while and be respectful to artists. If painters paint or draw to express their ideas or to communicate and they sell their works of art is that still art?. Yes no doubt it is. So, am I an artist?.The answer is no, no way.

Who is an artist then.

I remember taking my daughter as a child to a Miro exhibition and as she was contemplating one of the pictures she looked very worried and tugging at my sleeve she said: Mom, mom, he has gone off the lines. In her child perception Miró was a bad pupil because at school they were asked to draw inside the lines. I suppose at the beginning of the learning process, in this case at school, one has to follow the rules and when you more or less master them you can start art.

As I try to put the preceding ideas on the paper I realize that I’m going nowhere and I’m not clarifying anything.

I’ll leave it as it is. Art is everything, even the way or the movement caused by a leaf falling off from a branch. If you don’t beleive it let’s go to the beginning of the cinema, the illusion of motion. Cinema is often called the seventh art and their most acclamed inventors were scientists willing to show a phenomenom or action.

 

                                       

 

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8 mayo 2012 2 08 /05 /mayo /2012 12:50

                             

 

Yesterday I watched a major international sport competition, the Champion’s League football match between Barça and Chelsea. In their pursuit of excellence Barça lost the match. I’m saying pursuit of excellence because of the way Barça plays.


The Catalan team is not aggressive at all and I believe they lost the game because they didn’t attack as much as the experts say it has to be done in such sporting events.

Barça lost the match because Chelsea scored in the last few minutes when the Catalan  players were paralysed waiting for the instructions of the referee and neglected the protection of their goal. Chelsea took great advantage of the situation and scored.


I wonder in what cases pursuit of excellence justifies being aggressive, at least a little bit. For sure in football games it should be. This is what I heard in the interviews made to supporters and the opinions of sport journalists. They said Barça should be much more aggressive than it currently is.


This having been said let us point out that life is not a football match. We don’t have to win or lose. At least this is my own opinion, what I think at this very moment of my life.


On the other hand I would like to stress and always making reference to that football match that  Barça’s international defeat this time was followed by a much more meaningful loss with Real Madrid winning a match to the always considered Catalan National team in their own territory, in Barcelona.


Taking into consideration the present social and economic situation of Catalonia and the rest of Spain as well as the growing conflict of the Catalans with the State because of the assets owed, the only good news we had for the time being were Barça’s pursuit of excellence in the constant victories of the team. Will this attitude be changed after the latest sporting events and the resignation of their coach.


It remains to be seen.

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21 abril 2012 6 21 /04 /abril /2012 13:24

 

My boots are made for walking, my boots are made for walking, these  boots are made for walking.


Who was it, who sang to the boots. I found out afterwards, it was Nancy Sinatra, oops....


 

In any case she was alright. That is what I thought the other day from my seat at the Cercanías train (local train)

 

going to Passeig de Gràcia, in Barcelona, and this is the case of my old navy blue boots, the ones I was wearing.


 

They are much more than three years old, actually I don’t remember what year I bought them,

 

gosh,  they have walked a lot and they never abandoned me, they're still comfy.

 

We walked together long hours in Toronto, these boots took me to the heat of

 

Egypt and led me to the posh London Reform Club.


                              Long life to my old navy blue boots, you’re made for walking.

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15 abril 2012 7 15 /04 /abril /2012 19:27

 

 

Three months after having left Toronto I find myself today at home making my English homework.


Sorry dears but it is boring.

 

I joined last term of the year an Advanced class at British Council in Barcelona.

 

Teacher is alright. He is an Irishman, sometimes difficult to understand but this is the threat I don’t worry for.

 

But believe me,  the class in general is boring.

 

We’re some fifteen people, none of them overpassing the thirties, if so.


Actually my course colleagues might have the same interest I have, to get an official well appreciated qualification, the

 

Advanced Level of the British Council, but they are posh Spanish youngsters.

 

I say posh, please excuse me If I'm offending someone, because of the prize one has to pay for some twenty classes

 

in all, some twenty discounting Easter holidays and other days that I might not been able to go. I had to pay 700 Euros.

 

An amazing lot.


Anyway I joined and I’ll finish but nothing to do with the three months I joined Toronto’ s Ryerson University. I miss all

 

my colleagues there even tough their faces are beginning to fade.


I’m not going to get sad. I’ll go on here but it’s boring. I could not join the Escuela Official de Idiomas where the course 

 

is much cheaper but it was to late in the year when I arrived in Barcelona. Maybe next year, who knows now


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30 marzo 2012 5 30 /03 /marzo /2012 22:46
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