Erenlai - Items filtered by date: Friday, 28 September 2007
Saturday, 29 September 2007 02:08

Do not let your tee-shirt do the talking for you

The tee-shirts we wear often bear the name of a brand or a city, or else they offer to the people who happen to cross our path some words of wisdom or derision. This often makes me think about an old professor I often met, more than twenty years ago now.

He used to teach philosophy, and, as you can expect, he was not a big fan of that line of clothes. However, what was interesting was the reason he gave for this dislike, a reason worthy of a philosopher. His point was not about aesthetics or decorum, it was not even about the content of the inscriptions adorning our tee-shirts. No, what he did not like about “tee-shirts that know how to speak’ as he used to say was simply the fact that they were speaking at all. Doing so, they were speaking on behalf of the one who was wearing them. Even if the tee-shirts were saying the most beautiful things in the world, this was in no way an excuse. He preferred to listen to the bearer. The one making his tee-shirt speak, he used to say, frees himself from the duty to speak from the center of his own self. For sure, he was a philosopher, and nobody takes philosophers seriously, but his viewpoint might be worth noting anyway.
We often speak about making a “fashion statement”, and, curiously, the expression is rather a laudatory one. By what we wear we are supposed to say something about ourselves. It seems to me that making a fashion statement amounts to wearing a mask and pretending that this mask is my real face. Making a fashion statement is rarely conducive to dialogue. Tee-shirts or other clothes may have a mouth but, for sure, they are deprived of ears.
Looking a « tee-shirts that know how to speak » makes me think of the sentence of another philosopher, a Roman this time and an Emperor, Marcus Aurelius. He says somewhere that the thoughts that occupy our soul are ultimately reflected on our face, and also that our personal worth eventually depends upon the worth of the thoughts that we nurture: people who nurture thoughts of a low nature will finally be worth very little; people who direct their heart towards elevated thoughts will see that their personal value is likewise exalted.
If Marcus Aurelius is right, then let us be careful about what we are truly saying and doing by letting our clothes speak on our behalf. By identifying ourselves, consciously or not, to what our tee-shirts have to say, we might finally get a face as expressive as an old shirt and to be worth as much as the tee-shirt we bought at a discount on the corner of a street.

Friday, 28 September 2007 19:51



Friday, 28 September 2007 19:51


2003 年8月,我离开白乌,出去找工作。2004 年9月回来以后,就待在白乌。我到田里工作。我发现,如果只是赚钱的话,待在家里或出去打工存得钱差不多。当然,在外头打工赚得多,但是还要扣掉日常开销以及路钱…
我到新疆乌鲁木齐附近收割棉花。有人到白乌找人,我们一百人跟著他走。我在棉花田做了一个月,建筑做了三个月,后来挖运河做了八个月。最后我带回来7000 元人民币 。工作很辛苦,而且没办法寄钱回家。

Friday, 28 September 2007 19:49



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Friday, 28 September 2007 19:40


2007 年,我和我的妻子去江苏,建筑做了两个月。我们一起离开,一起回来。工作很累人。我们做砖块,一块砖一分钱,一个月领差不多700 人民币。我做夜班,从晚上八点做到早上九点,白天我睡不著。
如果可以的话,我还是想出去工作,因为我必须付孩子的教育费。老大21岁,老二17岁,老三是个女孩, 13岁。老大在西昌读高中。

Friday, 28 September 2007 19:21



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Friday, 28 September 2007 19:17



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Friday, 28 September 2007 19:11



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