Dress code

The summer has begun. The scorching sun makes people all sweaty and looking for a fan or a seat near the window. It is natural the higher the temperature goes, the scantier the people dress (within reason, of course). But the problem appears when men are allowed to go shirtless and women are frowned upon when they put on shorts or a top with moderate cleavage. It is especially visible in schools, as in workplaces people are usually dressed in a way it is acceptable for the company, although it is not always a rule. But when a teenager, who already kicks against all possible rules, is told what he is to wear, it cannot end well.

Dress code is sometimes necessary and understandable, as for example in politics or marketing, in situations when you have to deal with customer or represent a big company or political party. Then you must look professional, but being professional doesn’t have to mean that you must wear the same attire in summer and in winter. For example French police officers have two kinds of uniforms – one with light materials and with short sleeves for the warmer part of the year and one more ‘heavy’, for wintertime. It is a solution which is very good for both image of institution and for people working on behalf of it. There are also some initiatives to make employees more comfortable not only in their clothes, but in company in general, such as allowing the workers to dress more casually on Fridays.
The way one dress is very important for an individual, and the right to wear whatever you want is as important as the freedom of speaking your mind.

The high schools and their expectations of how their attendants should look like is a completely different story. Firstly, we have young people who aren’t necessarily willing to comply with what the principal says is allowed and what is not. Some schools have their uniforms and nobody have any problem with it. But in most of them, there are only some rules what you cannot dress, rules which majority breaks. The question is if these regulation follow the common sense or not, and if they treat everybody the same way. Making girls put on so-called modest attire when boys are allowed to wear almost anything and giving an argument that any part of women’s (girls in high school age are almost adult, at least in terms of appearance) body which is not covered would distract their male peers or male teachers is ridiculous. It is a claim that men have no brain to tell them that they shouldn’t touch anyone without their consent and excusing such actions by putting the guilt on females.

The problem also lies in the language we use while addressing such issues. Few moths ago, all Internet talked about a 16-year-old girl who was offended when their principal used the phrase ‘the modest the hottest’, as a mean to get the girls to cover their bodies. But it is somehow inappropriate to use such sexually-connotated word to get what he wants. Especially as most girls in that age already have low self-esteem and such sentences are very unlikely to improve their situation, making them ashamed of their bodies.
Another thing is how teachers address these who violate these rules and for example come to school in shorts or leggings – some make humiliating remarks like ‘why you are wearing panties in school?’ or even tell them to put on shorts when they have leggings (but that one is extreme). Let’s have some mutual respect, teachers towards pupils and vice versa.

It is obvious that we cannot let everything pass without a word, some rules must be followed in order to ensure safety and good atmosphere in class. But going too far in one or other way will do no good. Neither very strict nor very liberal policy towards the clothes is good. School should ensure that their pupils know how to dress appropriately for it will be required of them afterwards, and also that each of them have some freedom to express himself or herself through their clothing. Both things should be learned at high school and be obvious in adult life.


Five Lab – an application who knows you well

Recently, I stumbled upon something very interesting which seem to become very popular, especially among social media enthusiasts – a Five Labs Personality Test. It is a tool created by a San Francisco company Five that analyses the words you use in your facebook posts and determines which traits of personality you have. It is based on five characteristics – extraversion, openness, neuroticism, conscientiousness, and agreeableness.

The popularity of personality tests of various kinds – from the ones that you find in  magazines for teenagers to those of the “which character of your favorite TV series you are” is overwhelming. After answering few simple questions you have the result which you can share with your friends. Thus, it is no surprise that new Five Lab’s tool is spreading thought the internet like a wildfire, even if it works in a little different way. The algorithm does not enquire you about anything – it simply digs into all your facebook activity and counts the words that are ascribed to one particular character trait.

As simple as that, it already attracted giant number of users. People love statistics, especially if they touch them personally. And you can get more than that – seeing your friends’ profiles, comparing personalities with famous people like Barack Obama or Andy Warhol is among activities that you can do using this tool. . bez tytułu I

It shows you the chart and describes you in five words

The idea behind it is to show people how they create their image in social networking sites, such as facebook. Many try to be perceived in a different way than they are in real life, they create kind of avatar of themselves. But the data you receive after analysis is meant to be a kind of reflection of your profile – it extracts as many information as it can to determine who you are. The only problem with Five labs is that it only counts the words which are ascribed to one particular trait, not taking into consideration the context. It would be probably impossible to do this. But is it possible to truly label one’s personality? And even if, what for?

Five labs were designed mostly for fun of its users, like most of the tests of this kind. I suppose the huge part of the results doesn’t correspond to the real characters. But when we think of it – do we try to upload our everyday life on facebook? I think we want to share everything that is interesting to us and to certain extent try to appear better, richer and friendlier than they really are. But it’s nothing wrong with it – it is only our human nature, the want to be popular and respected. It is the form that is new.

One thing that worries me a little is the warning before you can get the results – you give access to your friend list, your posts, your email, your family, your relationship status, etc. We once again are asked to give so many information about our lives. The creators probably have now a lot of data about several millions of people. And they gave it voluntary. I cannot answer the question if an application can show in few moments how people are like. But one I can tell for sure, considering how fast the phenomenon of this application has spread throughout the Internet, is that the social media really carry enormous influence. It is only up to us how we will use it.  It is still a bit frightening when an engine shows you how sociable or reliable you are based on few hundred words you posted, in many cases without thinking much about it, on your facebook profile.

The site itself: http://labs.five.com

When American president visits Polish capital city

This week, the President of the United States visited Poland for the first time since 2011. He came on the 4th of  July not without a reason – this date is particularly important for the Polish history, as it is the anniversary of abolishing the communist system there. Twenty five years ago the first free elections took place. It is not surprising that such a huge amount of people came to see Mr President making a speech, then.

generally speaking, Poles view Americans positively. Although we cannot say that about all the population, the 2013 BBC World Service Poll showed that 55% of Poles view U.S. influence positively, the highest rating for any surveyed European country. A lot of Polish people have their families in United States and vice versa. Poland is perceived as one of the most pro-American nations, with deep political, economical and military bond between these two. But why do Poles and Americans seem to like each other so much?

Every post-1989 Polish government has been a strong supporter of America’s presence in the country. It is obvious  that no political body does favours and gives support for free. But this relationship is mutual – a lot of Polish soldiers sacrificed their lives in American Army and died for the ideology of the U.S. Besides, these two countries were allies during Second World War. We should also keep in mind that just when Poland lost its independence America became a free country.

The importance of immigration is also not to be underestimated. Today, in many countries America is the synonym for the better life and opportunities, a place where everything is perfect and it is easy to get rich. The myth of ‘rags to riches’ has always been very alluring. Although “the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence”, a lot of ordinary people have stayed there, having found the job that their mother country couldn’t offer and founded the family with an American spouse. And the connections are created.

The values of both countries are also very similar. Both American and Polish people deem freedom very precious and are very religious and rather conservative nation. It seems as though they are basically the same kind of people, additionally entangled in mutual historical alliances. That’s the reason why it is always such a big event when American president comes to Polish soil – no matter if we are in 1972, fighting with deep communism and greeting Richard Nixon or in 2014, still tackling many issues, but as an independent country, gathering to greet Barack Obama.