May 20th, 2004

breaking bad

on the unpleasantness of clothing

A Tibetan monk tries on Western clothes. Via Via Echidne of the Snakes.

Oh that suit! Tight tubes of cloth that gripped my legs, so tight that I was afraid to bend. Now I knew why the Westerners could not sit in the Lotus attitude: their clothes were too tight. Certainly I thought that I was "ruined for life" by these tight tubes. They put a white shroud on me, and around my neck they tied a thick ribbon and pulled it tight as if they were going to strangle me. Over that they fitted a short piece of cloth with patches and holes behind, in which, they said, the Westerners kept things - instead of in a robe as we did. But the worst was yet to come. They put thick and heavy "gloves" on my feet and pulled them tight with black strings with metal ends....I was told that I was dressed as a "Western gentleman of leisure". It seemed to me that they would have to have leisure as surely they could not be expected to do any work dressed up like this!

When I was a child I found clothes very uncomfortable. Even now I find most clothes we are expected to wear to the office very intrusive and unpleasant. I used to think everyone felt like that, but nowadays I think it is a personal idiosyncracy.

(I'm now going to talk MBTI) I think people with weakly developed 'S' (like me) can veer between ignoring sensory input and being irritated and oversensitive to it. And people with weakly developed 'N' (intuition/imagination) similarly spend half their lives ignoring imagination and the other half being irritated and disturbed by it (being supersititious for example, or going nuts about Satanism in Harry Potter or such like).
breaking bad


You may be interested in this piece from the Financial Times on near-genocide (no exaggeration) currently going on in Sudan. This is Moslem-on-Moslem killing on racial lines.

The roaring silence from the Arab League and the Muslim world over Darfur is inexcusable... The European Union has not fared much better, offering weak words at best... Europe needs to acknowledge the severity of the situation in Darfur and use its weight in the UN Security Council... to push for an emergency session of the Security Council to take up the Darfur issue in a resolution, making it clear to the government of Sudan that the killing must stop, aid must be allowed to go through and displaced people permitted to return home. The Security Council should in addition authorise all measures short of force to be used against Sudan and warn Khartoum of international military intervention if it does not alter its course. Only such an ultimatum will demonstrate that the international community means it when it says "never again" - that we are not going to stand by as another mass slaughter of innocents unfolds before our eyes.

I think the UN should do this with some urgency.

Via Via Crooked Timber