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Read my Lips

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You can’t.  Well, you can try.  It is possible that you may even guess accurately as to what my current expression is conveying, but that is all it ever will be; a guess.  Contrary to a recently popular belief, (made better known by one of Fox Network’s newer shows, Lie to Me) facial expressions are not a globally ubiquitous phenomenon.

According to an article published last year by the BBC, researchers “concluded that information from the eyes is often ambiguous and confusing in these expressions, with consequences for cross-cultural communication and globalization.”  Essentially the subject is stating that East and West see eye-to-eye quite differently.  I am reminded of this due to a more recent and similar article published on CNN International.

The topic itself is about relationships, specifically regarding personal ones, yet I found it painfully difficult to ignore the (what I felt to be)  less-than-subtle marketing plow for the Lie to Me show itself.

If you’ve never heard of micro-expressions, it’s time you did. They’ve been famously studied by Paul Ekman, Ph.D. (the real-life model for Dr. Cal Lightman of the hit show “Lie to Me”), who found that all humans display the range of emotions with identical facial expressions.

-Martha Beck
CNN Contributor for the Oprah Magazine

If you read the full text, you might notice just how obtrusive that one little phrase in an article of over 1098 words truly is.

Once again, the British Broadcasting Company will remind us that, in fact, the team of 13 Western Caucasians and 13 East Asians evaluated different responses to a set of standardized images depicting the seven main facial expressions.

The paper states that the Eastern participants used a culturally specific decoding strategy that was inadequate to reliably distinguish the universal facial expressions of fear and disgust.

-Judith Burns
Science Reporter for the BBC

This easily signifies how and why certain cultures perceive information in general so differently.  The norm for one may not be the norm for any given other.  From Hollywood to global politics, the separation is relatively constant though I suppose it really speaks to the efforts of those who try to fluidly comprehend one another.

Gotta admit, the Micro-expression assessment is pretty fun.


Written by laFedeDolce

March 25, 2010 at 02:15

Yes, yes he did.

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Ripe from the pages of The Huffington Post and the BBC – as if these two needed any other reason to host their own sitcom together, Former Presidents George W.  and Bubba Clinton embark on a quest to aid the citizens of Haiti.  President Bush takes the opportunity to perform some off etiquette manuevers on President Clinton.

Written by laFedeDolce

March 24, 2010 at 09:17

Posted in FTW, Humor, Political, Random, WTF

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Curling 2010

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Curling.  A sporting event which, according to Wikipedia, is absolutely irrelevant to most other athletic endeavors and bares a great deal of resemblance to a popular cruise ship pastime.

Now Canada’s second favorite sporting event, the concept of Curling has always been to get the ailsite to deliver swiftly and cleanly via broom, (without ever leaving the iced-over surface,) to the marked target known by players as simply, “The House”.  The sport was said to originate in Scotland and might be considered an alternative form of the more prominent Hurling;  with the exception that Hurling is a sport which requires quite a bit more physical exertion.  Then again, I have never taken up the broom myself.  Perhaps the sport of stone-sliding is truck loads of fun.  Curling was made an official Olympic event in 1998 and has been played ever since.  What surprises me most is the sudden spike in popularity.  Curling has not received this much attention since the 1965 release of the Beatles movie, Help!

Even The Simpsons seem to have picked up the passion for sweeping hog-to-hog.

…the show’s writers used a little creative license to declare mixed curling a demonstration sport. Other details they tried to get right by watching curling on YouTube and talking to actual curlers, including the Clarks and Rick Patzke, the chief operating officer of USA Curling.

“I would trouble them with the most mundane questions about curling,” LaZebnik said. “It was the equivalent of asking A-Rod, ‘Where do you stand in the batters box?'”

NBC Olympics
Associated Press

Well, maybe not quite that similar.  Half the world knows who A-Rod is; no imputation to Clark and Patzke.   It seems that most of the reception with regards to the Simpson episode, featuring both Homer and Marge participating in the Olympics as Curlers, saw the event as little more than an effort to derive attention to the sport from the show’s diverse audience.  In actuality, this may or may not be the case; regardless…the concept worked.

Curling is now making its way into the sub-cultural pastimes of youths and young professionals alike throughout North America.  It may not be baseball, but in terms of entertainment, it sure beats shuffleboard.

Written by laFedeDolce

February 21, 2010 at 13:57

Posted in Cultural, Random

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For the Betterment of Your Submission

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Political propaganda of North Korea acquired by collector, David Heather

More from the BBC

Written by laFedeDolce

February 12, 2010 at 03:33

Posted in Cultural, Intrigue, Political, Random

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Oh Twitter Tree ♪♪ Oh Twitter Tree

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Written by laFedeDolce

January 7, 2010 at 00:52

Posted in Humor, Random

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“Turn your back to the woods”

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Perhaps you know of Baba Yaga, the witch of Slavic Folklore.  She flies around on her broom, looking for children to gobble up in the night!  She lives in her small cottage, built on the long stalks of chicken feet, in the deepest part of the forest.

Baba Yaga, crafted by Melissa Sue Stanley for the Stuff This Art Exhibit

Written by laFedeDolce

December 2, 2009 at 12:03

Posted in Art, Cultural, Random

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Where “Freedom” Does Not Ring

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Foreign Policy Magazine and their journalists have a way with framing and delivering the concept of “Life”.  Below are excerpts from their Photo Essay:

The Least Free Places on Earth

Written by laFedeDolce

November 24, 2009 at 19:14