Why Do We Follow Systems Even When it Doesn’t Make Sense?

June 17, 2012 at 6:03 pm

Why do we always follow systems even when it doesn’t make sense?

We don’t even realize we are trained, like dogs – to respond, to act. To exist.

I just went through airport security.

I spent the night at the airport.

But after having gone through security earlier in the day I was asked to go through again. I wanted coffee. But I’d have to wait until after security because that’s liquid and we all know since 9-11 no more liquids gels aerosols etc. And my coffee won’t go into a ziplock bag without spilling.

The system says -
I can’t track her individually (yet, until we are ‘voluntarily’ chipped), so it’s the same policy as though I just arrived here and in case I’m a terrorist. Fair enough.

I went through the scan and the woman shouted ‘WOMAN RANDOM’ and asked me to step aside. I thought maybe she thought I looked at her funny until the guy said “Might as well buy a lotto ticket today, the computer picked you.”


It reminded me of the movie Idiocracy where the individual has dumbed down, losing the ability to think for hisself / herself, and letting the machine take over.

Why is it that we trust the machine over intellect?  Why do we not question the processes put in place?

Should I really have been pegged for a terrorist when I slept here all night?  I was waiting all morning just to get combustible coffee that I could sneak through and blow up the plane.  Dangit!  Random computer scan and I’m busted.

Flying through Wisconsin I bought butter and cheese, of course, because it’s Wisconsin. Did you know that my cheese was confiscated because it might have been very dangerous cheese?!  That, or it was all part of the system.

Once a system is put in place and we blindly follow, then place rules on top with a punishment attached – i.e. don’t cross the road (even if no traffic for miles!) until the little red guy turns to white on the traffic light or you’ll get fined – we are purposely giving up our ability to think rationally.   Running Man Mr Roboto

I am not arguing systems aren’t good. They can be eerily effective.  I just think it’s good to be aware that as we use more and more technology (as I write this from my smartphone-turned-dumbphone as “user friendly” means don’t make me have to think too hard) we should be using our brains more, not less.

No llores porque se ha acabado. Sonríe porque sucedió.

February 15, 2012 at 4:54 pm

Don’t cry because it’s over.  Smile because it happened.

- anonymous


February 5, 2012 at 12:57 am

Grillos, Chapulinas, however you fry them, no matter how much chili you sprinkle on them, they are still crickets. Or grasshoppers. A delicacy I have yet the guts to try.

They just drop them in oil, live, I was told. Oh. I guess it’s like lobster. But they hop. And, they’re bugs. I will try anything. But this one I had to pass on.

A delicacy in Mexico, and especially on the streets of Oaxaca. You’ll see thousands of fried grasshoppers in chili and lime, being sold in the market every day, fresh. Maybe next trip (and that’s a big maybe).

CRICKETS CRICKETS Grillos, Chapulinas

Christmas Day, Mexico DF

February 5, 2012 at 12:52 am

Got up that morning, the day was fresh, sunny and cool.  I was on my way to Starbucks and, passing by a church, I decided to pop in.  

I sat with others in silence, as people came and went.  

Feelings of guilt and sadness and missing my family were trumped by feelings of freedom, relief, independence. 

I had flashbacks of Spain, being in the same climate, in a church or cathedral, feeling lonely but content.  The changing point (Spain) in my life that I at first dreaded, then loved/hated, then never for a minute regretted.

I also had flashes of being in Berlin and the blog post I wrote about feeling free, completely relieved of shoulds and demands, and liberated from technology.

When I have flashes of images from other times and places, I recognize that the feelings are similar – not just that I am reminded of those times, but more importantly, they remind me of the feelings that they brought me.

The crisp, fresh, morning when I was walking down the road in Hovland with Aunt MaryBeth, when I felt so privileged that she asked me to join her on her morning walk.  Or when we went to Grand Marais to the laundromat.  The air was crisp, the sun shining, the seagulls (or seagles as I used to spell at the time) hanging out looking for food.  These times, with the weather being similar, remind me of feelings of happiness.  Pure joy and happiness.

As I sat there in the church I thought about these things.  And I recognized that although I was sad, and felt guilty, for not being at home, that I was feliz.  Mucha alegria.  Lagrimas of some sadness, some joy.  I was completely anonymous, nobody in the world at that moment would have had any idea where I was or what I was doing.  I was hidden within the walls of the church, within the city of Mexico.  Anonymous, happy, free.  

Castle Mexico City Chapultepec

January 12, 2012 at 8:22 pm

Castle Mexico City Chapultepec (Taken with instagram)

Torre Angel

January 12, 2012 at 8:00 pm

Torre Angel (Taken with instagram)


January 7, 2012 at 9:47 am

Truth (Taken with instagram)

Police in the Zocalo in Mexico DF

December 19, 2011 at 12:52 am

DF en Zocalo la policia con pistolas

Castle in Mexico City

December 18, 2011 at 9:12 pm

Taken with instagram

Tacos de canasta (cinco) y una bebida

December 18, 2011 at 9:03 pm

Cinco tacos de canasta y una bebida (Taken with instagram)