Monday 29 August 2022

Fun Month in Kigali

Hi guys.

So, I've mentioned my struggle before. I've been getting into videos more and there's only enough time in the day to write and edit or take videos and edit, I can't do both consistently. As I've spent several years blogging, and as Blogger itself is getting a bit blah (so many layout and template bugs it's horribly annoying), I've decided to post my latest video updates rather than write them all up.

So, here's what's been going on lately:

More about that hash:

And there's also been a lot of talk lately as a young woman, Liliane Mugabekazi, faces two years in jail for wearing a revealing outfit to a music concert. If you want to hear more about that, you can click here.

So, I know that people who have been following my blog might not be as interested in videos. It's certainly been a turbulent transition for me, as I've always preferred being behind the camera, but I think I'm settling into it now and, although there's a lot less writing content, it is fun to show you around my neighbourhood. Let me know what you think, what you'd like to see more of, and, if you wouldn't mind awfully, consider subscribing to the channel and liking the videos you enjoy. 

Tuesday 9 August 2022

Six-Minute X-Ray


Short review as I've got a few books that I've finished recently and falling behind.

In Six Minute X-Ray, you’ll learn the most powerful people-reading system in the world. Chase exposes and unpacks simple techniques that come together to allow you to see beyond the mask that anyone is wearing.

I fell into this during the Depp v. Heard trial. Like a lot of people, I thought I'd have no interest in that at all, who cares what celebs get up to in their personal life? (No, don't answer that, as I suspect it might be 'a lot of people'). But I became engrossed when it turned into a case of 'bloke accused of abuse' becomes 'victim of abuse.' A very interesting revelation and one that challenged a lot of social preconceptions. 

I do enjoy a bit of behavioural analysis, and read Joe Navarro's book What Every Body is Saying, years ago. I recommended it to my English students when I was lecturing, to try to raise awareness that not everything we communicate is verbal. 

During the trial, I stumbled upon The Behavioural Arts channel by mentalist Spidey. He had the author of this book on there, analysing body language, and recommended Six-Minute X-ray a few times, so I thought I'd check it out. I was a bit surprised to discover Chase Hughes was American, as the audiobook is narrated by a Brit. 

I enjoyed it, especially the chapters on language, as I am a linguist. I did an MA in Language & Communication Research, which covered a lot of sociolinguistics (how languages is affected my situation and culture) and forensic linguistics (idiolect and identifying linguistic patterns). Some interesting stuff in there about linguistic distancing and use of pronouns. 

I knew quite a few of the body language indicators, but there were definitely a few things in there I wasn't aware of. I think, with body language, a lot of it is very instinctive, because we've been watching for boy language our entire lives, but because it's so natural we tend to miss a lot. Books like this just bring things to the forefront. By listening to them a couple of times, we become naturally more aware of the way people speak and move. It can just give you a little heads-up sometimes.

I enjoyed this and would recommend if you're interested in body language. As Spidey regularly points out, there's no one action or reaction that definitively tells you someone is lying, but there are clusters of behaviour that increase that likelihood. 

I have to admit, I was sceptical once upon a time, but Joe Navarro convinced me. I'd just finished reading What Every Body is Saying and there was a part in there that said the direction someone's feet are pointing are usually a good indication of where they intend to go next. I was down the village pub with my mum and some friends. One of our friends was saying his goodbyes, but his foot was pointing towards the main room in the pub, not the door. I looked at this and thought, 'well, that's bollocks isn't it.' But just as he was finishing his goodbyes, he said 'right, I'm just going to pop to the loo before I go,' and walked the way his foot was pointing. I honestly believe he indicated that he needed the toilet before he was even consciously aware of it. The direction of his foot really was the direction he went in, even though everybody expected him to head straight for the door from his words. I've never forgotten that. It was kind of fascinating. 

You can download resources from the book here.