I've been feeling a bit off lately. Work's still the same old, same old, but quite a few of the people I've worked with for years have gone in the latest personnel cull, and some of the rest are on holiday, which means it's been a quiet week, really. Except for the workload, which has of course increased.
On my way in to work, I've taken to reading the free rag rather than bringing my own quality newspaper as I used to do until June 1st, when I finally succeeded in cancelling my subscription (I'd been trying to since halfway through of last year, but I kept missing the deadline). As it's free, this Metro (or Sp!ts; there's two of them) is complete crap, but you'd be surprised to know how many people take it seriously. There was an article (I use the term loosely) at the start of the week, and no doubt prompted by the upcoming 5-year anniversary of the event, in which the 'reporter' not only cast doubt on the official explanation of what happened on 9/11, but even went to far as to suggest that the whole thing had been stage-managed by the American government itself. It took me a few days to find out that his 'facts' had actually been borrowed from the low-budget Internet documentary Loose Change; and to my horror, from the Letters To The Editor-section, I found out that quite a few of my countrymen, who I naively believed to be an educated and informed lot of human beings, subscribe to this crackpot idea.
Maybe I've spent too much time in the Middle East, but conspiracy theories get on my wick.
In Cairo, if the local bakery ran out of bread before the end of the afternoon, you could bet your bottom dollar that soon someone would start the rumour that it was due to Zionist infiltrators and agents of the West intent on suppressing Islam. Once, I almost got lynched for giving credence to the Western reports that said that an Egypt Air pilot had killed himself, taking his crate and his passengers with him, and my husband refused to speak to me for 3 days because I'd embarrassed him in failing to support the Egyptian belief that it had been an Israeli provocation. I can't help it. I may be unimaginative in my opinions, but I happen to have a firm belief in Occam's Razor: the simplest explanation is usually the best.
I'll never watch Loose Change. I believe I know what happened that awful day from the footage I watched, and what happened was that a bunch of islamic fundamentalists hijacked a couple of airliners and crashed them into the Twin Towers and the Pentagon, killing thousands. And for what? Their entry into paradise, because it certainly hasn't helped the other muslims still trying to live their lives today any.
Anyway, halfway through the week I started to lose my disgust of this story and fret over another: Jet Li's announcement that he's retiring from making martial arts films, and that Fearless, which has just premiered, will be his last ever in the genre. The news knocked me for six, because as you may or may not know, I am a HUGE fan of Wushu movies, and Jet Li -- well, he's the embodiment of Wushu, really. But now he apparently feels the time has come for him to be taken seriously as an actor (according to the free rags) or to devote the rest of his life to promoting a better understanding of buddhism in the world (according to an essay he wrote and published on his website)-- quite how he thinks he will be able to do either with Rogue, his next film which is currently in post-production for release some time next year, I don't know, as it seems to centre on revenge in a criminal underworld, but good luck to him. Who knows, there might be room for another Chow Yun-Fat in Hollywood and\or Hong Kong.
And now I feel like I want to watch Xiao ao jiang hu zhi dong fang bu bai (aka Swordsman II) again, so...toodlepip!