A New Found Love…

Last year I found an old picture of me writing on my parent’s typewriter. I must have been around seven.

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I remember this typewriter and that my sister and I often played on it. I think it was our mum who had some books about how to learn to typewrite and we would type endless “qwert asdfg ghjkl poiuy” but would never get to book 2.

It was my sister, when she was about fourteen, who decided to go to a proper typewriting course during the holidays, but as she didn’t drive she asked me to drive her. There was no point in just taking her, I joined in and we both did the course. To this day we can type with all our fingers, super quickly, without looking at the keyboard, thanks to the old technology, and my sister!

I often thank her, like now, when I’m looking at the most astounding surroundings and typing away…

My parents came to Australia for a visit last year and we took them to the Hunter Valley, we were prowling one of the antique shops when a sight made me decided I wanted one, even if I had no idea why or what for… a typewriter.

The one I saw there wasn’t exactly the one I wanted so I waited until an online shopping site manifested one exactly like the one I was imagining… actually, very similar to the orange one from my childhood.

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It’s a new love. Not that I intend to use to actually write things on it, even thought I bought it new tapes and it works perfectly. It just makes me happy looking at it. It’s a fun decoration with the potential of being something you can play with.

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Freelancer Despair

I am usually lucky at finding good freelancers to edit and proofread my work but this weekend’s crop is a bit despairing…

roger that

This one really wants to edit my work! What is he trying to say? A proofreader that writes “i” in lower case, puts a space before full stop, doesn’t start the phrase with a capital and doesn’t say anything coherent? Bothering no chance? Whaaaat?

 

no comment

No comment,,,,

 

Since past 7 years.png

… Since past 7 years? Is this right? I think it should be “for the past 7 years, or since 2011…”

 

into content writing industry

“THE content writing industry” THE grasp of articles is essential to an editor… I’m not even going to question the “into”, or “from last 5 years”…

 

I am having experience.png

“I am having experience”? I am having experience of running screaming around the room! And I am not a SIR (that is how carefully they have read my proposal…)

 

academic computer engineering.png

I want an editor for a sassy romantic text, this one does not seem to fit the profile…

 

finance wiz carfully

And same with the finance wiz who use his words “carfully”. Sorry cannot hire a proofreader who cannot proofread his words “carefully”.

 

no space after stop.png

This one is the best one so far, for real, not ironically. He just misses spaces after full stops. I can give him the benefit of the doubt, maybe he was trying to save space in a limited character profile… but what if this isn’t the case? A proofreader that misses details…

 

the best tool.png

Lastly, I need a person, not a tool! And I’m not worried about plagiarism… my proposal clearly states they are just to edit a book proposal, not write anything, why would I need a plagiarism tool? I din’t plagiarise anything and I know it…

 

[deep long sigh ending up with a chuckle… I can’t deny this is funny]

I’ll wait for tomorrow, or the day after, or a week even, it may bring me a good option or my previous freelancer back… Wish me luck it seems I’m in need of it!

Medicina sem Milagres

— Que isso Deus, tá tomando antiácido?
— Pois é, Pedrinho, tô num nervoso danado!
— Mas porque?
— Sabe o que é, é o avanço da tecnologia, da medicina especialmente…
— Como assim? Achei que você estava impressionado com os seres humanos, o que eles conseguiram fazer e descobrir.
— Impressionado eu até que tô, mas também tô frustradíssimo que não consigo falar com mais ninguém!
— Hum?
— Semana passada achei um moleque lá nos cafundós da Africa, lugar sem um celular, nem um curandeiro tinha na aldeia, e comecei a bater um lero com ele, aquela história de sempre, “então você é muito especial, eu sou Deus e estou falando com você”, estava indo tudo bem, a aldeia estava toda impressionada com o menino. Isso é, até quando baixa lá os Medicins Sans Frontiers e diagnosticam esquisofrenia, tacam um anti-psicótico no menino e pronto, acabou o nosso papo, ficou surdo, como todos os outros, não ouve mais nada.
— Ah Deus, que pena, então tá difícil de se comunicar é?
— Pois é Pedrinho, os únicos que me ouvem são meus queridos mendigos, mas aí ninguém ouve eles! E todo mundo que eu tento conversar vai parar no manicômio.
— E um milagre? Já pensou nisso, um milagre dos bons, de deixar todo mundo falando, aposto que ia fazer efeito!
Deus cai no choro, desconsolado.
— Calma Deus, porque essa choradeira? Qual o problema do milagre?
— Ai é a tecnologia que atrapalha! — Deus dá uma fungada daquelas — Eu mandei uma santa chorar e os cientistas disseram que era a condensação do ar, quem eles acham que fez o ar condensar na Santa? Mandei a santa sangrar e eles descobriram que foi o mendigo que eu convenci ir lá que colocou o sangue na Santa. Estou sem saida, cada vez que eu mando um milagre eles arrumam uma boa explicação, nem prá chuva no sertão tô ganhando atribuição… É a natureza, é a inversão térmica, até o aquecimento global, mas eu? Não to valendo nada. Ai que saudade do tempo da Joana d’Arc, uma boa fogueira não fazia mal a ninguém né?

Lucifer & the amazon

If Lucifer comes up to me and says “what do you desire?”

“Me? Right now?”

“Yes…’ he is a bit irritated with my lack of immediate response and insists ‘what do you most desire?’

His eyes burrow deep in mine, with that intense vampiric hypnotic look.

‘Well… in fact,’

‘Tell me, tell me your needs…’ he looks sexy.

I’m decisive now. I know what I want. ‘Many, many, many, reviews.’

‘Reviews?’ he is thrown off his game, forgets about the intense look. ‘For your soul, what do you want for your soul?’

‘I told you. Reviews. Amazon Reviews. Great, independent, unhinged, unbiased, uninhibited, five star, reviews.’

‘Fuck.’

‘That I can get, but reviews… seriously, no money can buy. And since I’m giving my soul for it, I want many, in all my books.’

Veríssimo, o Diabo e a Amazon

Acordei pensando no Veríssimo, o filho, não o pai. Quer dizer, ele deve ser pai e até avô, mas digo, o Luis não o Érico, com mil perdões, mas os outros não me importam.

Estive no festival de escritores de Sydney no final de semana passado e eles fizeram um painel para você dizer qual o livro que tinha mudado sua vida. Eu fiquei pensando e pensando… mas são tantos livros na minha que não sei dizer, fiquei entre As Aventuras de Xisto, o meu primeiro amor, e o Senhor dos Anéis. Mas queria mesmo é ter uma resposta do tipo “a essência essencial do ser e as profundezas da alma”. A verdade é que não tenho. Hoje de manhã percebi que tem um conto do Veríssimo, o Luis Fernando, que me marcou mais que os outros. O conto em que ele tenta vender a alma ao diabo para poder abrir aquela capinha de plástico do CD. O que no momento já se tornou irrelevante, se o Diabo aceitou a barganha saiu ganhando. Se bem que essa habilidade ainda deve servir para abrir embalagem de chicletes, então não é totalmente inútil.

Hoje de manhã pensei no Veríssimo, e aí, no Diabo. O que eu queria mesmo, pela minha alma, é um monte de Avaliações cinco estrelas, nos meus livros na Amazon.

O diabo do Veríssimo (digo, o diabo criado pelo Veríssimo) iria ficar tão indignado quanto com ele, mas você pode ter tudo que o dinheiro pode comprar! Eu explicaria:

— Eu sei, mas o que o dinheiro não compra, são as avaliações, independentes, na Amazon.

A p@rr4 da Amazon deleta todas as avaliações dos meus parentes e conhecidos, e como o livro fica com poucas avaliações, pessoas que eu não conheço não são incentivadas a fazer avaliações… e vira uma bola de neve.

Acordei pensando em como resolver o problema e só achei uma solução:

— Lucifer!

Lara, Tony e os Zebus

Domingo, oito da matina, a Lara e eu estamos tomando café no nosso bairro. É uma portinha que serve cafés nas mesinhas que coloca na calçada.

A Lara não se chama Lara, mas como é o nome que lhe dei quando se transformou em minha personagem, vou adotar desde já. Há anos coleciono suas histórias e tenho trabalhado duro para escrever um livro com as aventuras dessa figura. Esse livro nasce direto em inglês na minha mente, por isso está dando tanto trabalho!

Essa tal Lara virou personagem porque as coisas mais inusitadas acontecem com ela, ou ao seu redor.

Por exemplo, a cena de um desses domingos de manhã. Estávamos indo trabalhar; ela trabalhar-trabalhar, por estar organizando um grande evento que está acontecendo essa semana. Eu porque indo acompanhá-la, posso fazer companhia e dedicar o dia para “os meus escritos” que são qualquer coisa desde promover meus livros, escrever-escrever, ou planejar os próximos passos que preciso tomar.

Estávamos ali, cafezinhos e torradas na mão, e a Lara olha para o lado, olha para mim, e me diz baixinho:

— Olha, o Tony Abbott está passando correndo!

E passa o Tony Abbott com um sorrisinho na cara, porque ele viu a Lara falando o nome dele. Ela percebe que ele percebeu e dá aquela disfarçada, olhando para o lado. Ele passa com a camisa suada junto com dois amigos, ainda trotando.

Só na Australia mesmo para passar o ex-primeiro ministro sem pompa nem cerimônia.

O que me veio na cabeça foi o conto “O Recital”, do Luís Fernando Veríssimo que depois de colocar um homem querendo tocar a tuba num quarteto de cordas, solta uma manada de zebus no palco.

Quando estou com a Lara, o cara da Tuba é o de menos, eu vivo esperando a manada!

The Brazilian Mess – how to explain it

Trying to explain what is going on in Brazil to my friends and colleagues here in Australia, has been a challenge and a bit of a long conversation. I am very far from an economic connoisseur, miles away from understanding politics, but I’m good at summarising situations, so here is how I see it…

  • Let’s start with the military coup of 1964 which lasted until the 80’s leaving Brazil with an eroded educational system (teachers and students were subversives) and an external public debt that would become evident only years later, but was about four times higher than it is now, and it was about half of Brazilian’s GDP.
  • Since then, Brazilian Politicians are trying to cope and recover from this hole.
  • Add a lot of corruption in all parties and throughout time with no consequence. With the free press, after the end of the dictatorship, a lot came to light but very few people felt the whip of punishment.
  • Then you have Collor, the president who resigned in 1992 not to be impeached, and was re-elected to the Senate in 2014. He is now part of the investigation for corruption, “Lava Jato” operation, that I will mention a bit more about. He was almost impeached because his main economical act was invading people’s savings accounts leaving everyone with the equivalent of AU$50 in the bank and taking whatever was extra to fix the economy. My grandfather, on my mother’s side, is counted as one of his victims, like him many didn’t recover of the emotional blow that measure landed them and died of health complications short after. Needless to say, he didn’t fix anything.
  • After some years Lula arrives at the presidency, in 2003, a worker with no education who had been fighting the noble fight for the poor for three elections unsuccessfully. He was to stay until 2011 in two four-year mandates. During his time he put a series of measures in place that were apparently fantastic but completely unsustainable. He “gave money away” to the people. He created supporting systems, I think they are similar to the Dole, that were given to various people who, no doubt about it, needed it:
  • Support for students
  • Support for unemployed people
  • Support for families with many children
  • Support for families of incarcerated people
  • Support for poor people to equip their housing commissioning houses
  • Support of students to study overseas

All these sound great, and to the receivers, it was great. The problem is that these same receivers were not generating value in the society to to refill the public coffers.

For a while these measures turned the economy and there was a sense of false prosperity. Salaries were raised in general, because people would prefer not to work and receive the Gov Support if the salary didn’t match at least what they would get if they didn’t work.

Brazilians are great in breaking payments in 10 instalments and overcommitting their income. There is a cultural element where my people tend to think they have to appear richer than they are, which makes for a lot of over-spending.

I believe that meanwhile, Lula, who was supposed to be for the people, became corrupt, he probably became tempted by the power, the money and the abundance he had never experienced before. His children became multi-millionaires in the span of ten years and their elevation is parallel with lobbying and political movements and benefits given to large corporations.

  • Dilma, the current president, is Lula’s protege, she managed her first mandate in the same spirit, in the wake of Lula’s policies. She was re-elected in 2014 but hasn’t been able to do much so far, because of all the corruption issues. I don’t see her as being as corrupt as Lula, I think she isn’t as smart, she seems to have a faint noble streak, but she is naive and frankly, I don’t find her smart at all.
  • In August 2013, the law that allows for reduction of sentences to convicted criminals for dubbing their fellow lawbreakers, was reviewed and signed by Dilma. That was something very important for what would come next, if she knew what she was doing!
  • Then came Operation Car Wash “Operação Lava Jato”, in March 2014, the investigation that caused all the mess started. Looking into the money laundering of one car wash, the first domino fell.  With the law I just mentioned above, one person caught started telling on the others. About 160 people have been put in jail so far, almost 3 Billion Reais have been recovered while about 22 Billion have been requested to be returned. Collor and Lula have been caught in this operation’s net and are being investigated.
  • Dilma, in an attempt to help Lula, offered him the Chief of Staff Ministry, to allow him to avoid preventive incarceration, and to allow him to be investigated by a higher level of justice, escaping the grasp of the Car Wash Operation; I believe that he would be able to manipulate the higher level judges and escape justice.
  • Lula hasn’t been allowed to get into this ministry so far, the justice system is fighting hard to avoid it. There is talk he is trying to run off to Spain.
  • This ministry and the release of some private conversations recorded between Lula and Dilma were the straw that broke the camel’s back, as I see it. They turned the public opinion, created the protests and made the impeachment process to progress.
  • This week, one instance of the impeachment process was voted and approved. In the next few weeks, the Senate should vote, if they approve it, Dilma will be removed from office temporarily, for 180 days, as the investigation moves forward.

With all that we also have the crazy mozzies, mysterious viruses, the new flu felling people by the bunch, the ecological disaster, the super polluted Guanabara Bay, falling bike paths, the infra-structure in Rio with its delayed projects AND we are 105 days from the Olympics…

PS.

I have to say that I’m still happy, because for the first time a lot of people are feeling the consequences of being corrupt, are being punished. I feel there is a sense of pride in being honest being recovered and although the short term from now should be dire, the long term has to be better than it has been.

PS2.

To help my writing, please buy and review my new book at Amazon. Find the book in the market you are registered at, search: Tania Crivellenti –  Sideways Reality” [at Amazon AU, US, BR]