Eight weeks until Christmas. Fuuuuucccccc%%%%%! Well at least I can see where the months have gone, with scattered clothes littering the apartment like a crime scene. Bed-Couch-Table. Repeat. With gyms closed and restrictions on exercise outdoors, the nation has pulled together, unanimously, to laugh at Melbourne. The mighty southern city, the only one suffering lockdown in Australia, has itself bonded in unity. We’re a steadfast, supportive team. That is, until the last few weeks when another suburb has another outbreak, delaying freedom again. Then it’s curses, hexes and foul-mouthed tirades all the way! <Am looking at you Northern Suburbs, you bunch of arsehats!>
For the first few weeks I was determined to continue my gym work. I then got injured – a sore right wrist, can you believe. You can complete the rest of that anecdote yourself. I then did nothing for two months. Well, I say nothing, I got fatter and developed lactose sensitivity. Ahh 2020, the gift that keeps on giving! Getting into it again, I’ve been out running. Ohhh the lamentations. I thought I was doing all right, the legs starting to find their stride, upping the pace. I felt I was really motoring! For about fifty metres. Then someone with a tiny gait barely breaking a sweat passed me, and I realised I’m an old man with grey hair, wheezing like I’d swallowed a broken accordion.
After spending months alone, seeing ladies and their Lycra clad bottoms has become shockingly attractive. Clearly their standards have lowered and defences tumbled, as occasionally, just sometimes, I get the eye. This never happens when I’m running - of course, I mean, I’m a fuc*ing fat cave goblin!!! - only when walking. I’m the first to admit there are a vast preponderance of other possibilities, like an astounding number of women with glass eyes. But it’s bizarre. At the moment, if ladies do have the misfortune to stare in my general direction, they would see overgrown hair, sunglasses and a mask. Generally, I’m wearing earphones, so that’s my good-looking, model-worthy ears out of the equation too. Which leaves my forehead. I didn’t think I had a particularly attractive forehead and yet clearly - clearly! - I’m wrong. I’ve effectively become better looking by covering 90% of my face. This is a minor revelation. If anything, I feel my face has been letting me down, performing a disservice to my forehead for years!
In my spare time when not writing the second book and gasping pathetically, I’ve taken up a Digital Photography course from Harvard. Some fantastic facts: yellow can be made from red and green, which is madness but true despite what they teach you about primary colours at school; all colours are made up of infinite additions/subtractions of red, green and blue, and when we look at a colour 90% of its brightness is actually green and red, which is handy as 98% of cones in our eyes are directed at red and green wavelengths; and lastly the reason why you never like photos of yourself is that you’re used to seeing your reverse image in the mirror. What everyone else sees is you normally. So, the theory is, if you take a photo of yourself and flip the image, this is how you really look. Amusingly, whilst you may prefer that image, the people that know you won’t. I have tried it, and it’s still not getting any more favourable. Maybe it needs more flips? 301? No. 302? Nope . . . it’s a workout in itself.
Facebook and Twitter, much-maligned platforms, are stuck. Stuck making millions, but stuck. The former I use to pretend I’m a good person, like everyone else, by remembering birthdays, but also, to post this blog and interact with Motorcycle and Landcruiser forums. I am not part of the Twitterati. It’s about as appealing as Chinese Opera, backed by a choir of mewing cats, whilst being punched in the happy-sacks repeatedly by a band of midgets mistaking my equipment for a piñata. Fascinatingly, both platforms have become the go-to for actual, real-life news, for millions of people. With more unfiltered opinions than ever, the channels have become culpable for spreading mis-information. This is . . . odd. They’ve inadvertently become the arbiter of facts.
Meanwhile, the people creating the bullshit seem to escape blame entirely. It’s not simply an education question, either. There have always been kooks and weirdos, and they are basically anyone that doesn’t share your enlightened, educated opinion. We talk of welcoming diversity, as long as everyone thinks the same as you. Otherwise we shout them down, decrying that these louts probably don’t even know the difference between a macaron and macaroon, the fu**ing morons!
We all have our own reality. For example, I refuse to accept it’s cold unless it’s snowing. For many of the lovely people in Australia, anything below twenty degrees warrants woollens. Then there is propaganda designed to spread fear or incite a reaction. Churchill openly lied about how well the Allies were doing to play-down any hysteria. Hitler was going to eat you. Russians were going to sterilise Americans (not all bad, then). Oh, and all religious texts. Should banners exist over every, ‘and the Lord said . . .’??
Speakers’ Corner in Hyde Park, London, is a marvellous place. You can totter along any weekend, listening to someone fart their opinions to the masses. Usually I’m going to hell in one religion or another, but that’s tolerance for you. Yet if I don’t like what they preach, I move on. So do others. The same applies to media. I don’t watch television. I have one, technically, leftover from a housemate, but it’s from the age before digital. It gathers dust excellently. Most platforms and media outlets, unless independently wealthy or the BBC, exist from sponsorship, who are in turn depending on advertising to the masses. If you switch off, so do they.
Perhaps it’s a case of using your own judgement to work out the bullshit from facts, or alternative facts. Social media can be a force for good too, as this wonderful story attests. There are no lies here, no underhanded tactics, no effort to sway voters: an elderly couple struggling to provide for themselves. The reaction has been superb. And talking of people struggling with life, I’ve started Kerouac’s excellent On The Road. It’s amusing to see all the references to William Burroughs of Junky fame. Even to Kerouac, he’s a drug-addled step beyond.
Having already drunk my tea and read a little as per my Sunday morning tradition, I’ve just finished Good Habits, Bad Habits by Wendy Wood, the results of clinical studies into how we form habits. It’s more than just self-control . . . apparently, I wasn’t really listening, was doing something else (hardy har). According to the book, the more self-control you have the more successful you will be in life: school grades will be better; you’ll eat healthier and more likely to be less obese; you’ll manage your money better; and have less arguments in relationships. But if you do anything regularly enough, it becomes a habit, whether good or bad for you. Like checking your phone one hundred times a day for the latest social media posts.
Have a lovely week! x
When they shine the light inside, I hope it’s using a bulb from a lighthouse. He’ll be lit up like a nuclear glowworm for a decade. As we’ve seemingly exclaimed a hundred times this year, what a week! There is no leadership race in the world like a US Presidential one. I have this awful feeling that the fat bastard is going to make a full recovery, sashaying out of the hospital, trumping that having COVID is no worse than watching X-Factor or The Block. So, still fairly horrific. Nothing more than a little brain scarring. How would we tell?
The upshot will be an election romp, claiming he was right all along. The flu, he’ll fart, was exaggerated from the beginning. “I had to get COVID myself to prove to everyone it’s overblown!” If a 74-year-old walking advert for hair-implants and chicken-nuggets can survive, then anyone can, ammarite!! The caveat is that they can be flown in a personal helicopter to the military-grade Walter Reed hospital, no relation, and access a billion-dollar medical team on a whim. Wonder if he’d feel the same if he had to access universal healthcare, rinsing his eyeballs with bleach.
As with the much-revered and respected British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, a bastion for decency and clear-thinking, no one would wish a leader imminent death. Only a real-bastard would crave such unpleasantness, with Democrats and Liberals the world-over quick to wish the President well. Seemingly, anyway. I mean, we should all stick to this principle, right? I certainly did when Boris was on death-row. Admittedly, I’ve been remarkably less affixed to the stance since. If they can treat others with such callous impunity, should we always adopt the high-ground? Is there an ethical, moralistic and ecclesiastic grey-area? According to Scott Adams’ Win Bigly: Persuasion in a World Where Facts Don't Matter, we’ve already made up our minds, we just need to source ‘facts’ to suit our position.
Ever wanted to see a leaf super-highway up close? Well here you go! My wonderful new macros lens proving it's worth
I love those, ‘well, fu**ing hell!’ moments when your preconceptions are challenged. We live in a world where everything is disputed, people that don’t share the same world-view are morons, ‘so called’ experts are torn-apart, and those that have no knowledge whatsoever are considered trusted advisers! And if you think that’s not you, picture this. You find a lump on your person. You know it’s not muscle cos you’ve been sitting on your ass during COVID like everyone else. Are your first thoughts concerned with getting to a doctor, a person dedicating their life to medicine and the study of the human body? Nope, we search the internet. We google. We then may see a doctor if the situation persists, but if we don’t like the outcome, we get a second opinion. We live in an age where facts are only relevant if you agree with them. Well try this out, Trump is far from a know-nothing imbecile. He is a manipulative, master persuader.
After finishing the utterly dire Wuthering Heights during the week, where I constantly hoped the next sentence was ‘ . . . and after tea, when Catherine could barely countenance another scornful remark by the awful villain Heathcliffe, everyone died a slow and painful death’, I’ve picked up Understanding Jung (a little bit of psycho-analysis, because that’s what you need when living alone in month four-thousand of lockdown), and the other-worldly Scott Adams’ Win Bigly. The latter is unputdownable, even though it's on audio, so in fact is exactly that. What’s wonderful about the book is that Adams, a self-described ultra-liberal, hypnotist and a man of academic persuasiveness, uses the latter in the book on you. He even tells you so. He’s persuading you of Trump’s persuading capabilities.
The Dilbert cartoonist predicted Trump’s win in 2016, and goes on to elaborate on the baboon himself. Am barely halfway through, and I can see the patterns. This week Trump decried whether he will accept the outcome of the election, a complete masterstroke. He has cemented ‘he will continue’ into people’s minds, that he ‘has the power’. It doesn’t matter that he hasn’t got that power, but that’s what people are focusing on, Trump continuing. They’re talking less about the wall, his failures in business, his marriage and numerous scandals, his pu$$y-grabbing, racism, incestual thoughts about his daughter, about the disastrous COVID, about ignoring the wishes of a dying judge. Everyone is focused where he wants them: the election, and Trump staying put. Additionally, he has pre-empted any loss calling it ‘a fix’, so his supporters will be outraged should anything less than a win be granted. It’s a wonderful pantomime. He’s poked holes in democracy, disputed ‘facts’ to the point his followers will believe anything he says. It’s a dogma. As Adams points out, he could literally run with Bernie’s policies and still win. There is nothing like a US election.
The biggest mistake people consistently make are dismissing those who oppose your world-view as know-nothings, believing that presenting facts will sway them. All ‘they’ need is a bit of education, right? Well they think the same. It’s fascinating. Adams’ spends considerable time in the book on cognitive dissonance, cognitive bias and the perceptions of reality i.e. your reality being different to the reality of others. Adams also states that although we claim to base our opinion on logic and reason, we actually form our opinion and then hunt for facts to suit. It’s like I’m reading two Jung books, whilst eating a Jung steak with a Jung basting, with a side of Jung, washed down with a fresh-Jung smoothie, sitting in a Jung tracksuit. I may not escape COVID with my sanity yet.
Spent a little time outside with my macro lens this weekend, lovely to be out in the sunshine!
I don’t want to eat cockroaches. Just, no. And yet! A story popped up this week of cockroach farms in China housing a billion cockroaches which consume restaurant food waste, are then ground up and used as high-protein animal feed. Those familiar with the film Snowpiercer will be acquainted with the jellified nutrient bars of the future for human consumption, and I realise it’s feasible and probably quite practicable, but I want to opt out. Give me almost anything else. Except olives, can’t do olives. Or coffee, that smells. All the stuff of nightmares in Chez Reed.
I’ve been reading a few things this past fortnight, an eclectic mix of meditation, overt drug use, classic literature and social inequality. Calm no matter what by Paul Wilson welcomed daily meditation back into my life and Bronte’s Wuthering Heights so far offers a maudlin, frustrating affair of ‘he said, she said’. I suppose there’s something in the writing that makes one so emotionally intertwined with the novel, even if it’s with vehement wish that all the characters die suddenly in some kind of caustic olive-coffee-cockroach timebomb. Thinking I was going to need a ‘fix’ to get me through the book, this has been quashed by William S Burroughs Junky scaring away any scintilla of interest, especially as the audacious 1950’s novel is based on real-life-experience by the Naked Lunch author. Who knew that if junkies blow their arm veins, they can often find success injecting between the toes? Ouch!
However, on a lighter and less toe-curling note, the book on social inequality is a tour de force of ‘wow’. The Spirit Level: Why More Equal Societies Almost Always Do Better is ridiculously good. There are many, many charts, but these are simple to understand and use United Nations statistics, rather than a dartboard and the Trumpian guidebook to horseshit. An excerpt: If a country does badly on health, you can predict with some confidence that it will also imprison a larger proportion of the population, have more teenage pregnancies, lower literacy scores, more obesity and worse mental health scores. Additionally, more equal societies have a greater sense of public responsibility and trust, recycle more, produce less carbon emissions and have less homicides. And if that wasn’t enough, more equal societies work less hours per week. Convinced yet? Read this book, it’s amazing.
Surprisingly Australia and New Zealand often come out middling to bad, the UK is awful, and the USA are setting records in being reprehensible. They’re so terrible they should, and often are, held in contempt. The Scandewegians and Japan are far ahead, showing that if you invest in universal healthcare, good education and fundamentally a more equal society, it is beneficial to the entire country not just those less well off. A rising tide of equality, basically. Who would have thought that short-termism and constant tax-cuts to service the rich and fuck the unknowing poor into a coma would benefit society?
In other news, as Australia waltzes out of winter with a spring in its step, protests against wearing a mask happen every weekend, raising much needed coffers to pay back country debt. Get out their people, protest like your life depends upon it! Which it doesn’t, it’s the antithesis of that. Meanwhile across the rather large pond, American jurist, equal rights campaigner and all around good-egg Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away this week, finally succumbing on her fifth battle with cancer. Talk about tenacious! With her avarice for life in mind, I shall get outside into the sunshine. Since my hair is long and I’m wearing a mask and glasses, I’m entirely dependent upon the bridge of my nose to soak up as much Vitamin D and energy as it can. Otherwise I may have to look at those protein and health shakes to make up the shortfall, which have very recently become far less appealing.
They key to pulling chicks when a teenager was to have an ugly friend, apparently, or preferably friends. The theory was to shine amongst the throng: surround yourself with a bunch of greasy-haired, drooling baboons (teenagers, basically) that additionally talked of warlocks and smelt like a fetid badger had sex with a durian fruit, and you were positively magnetic. Maybe it was the liberal application of Lynx ‘Old Sox.’ It never worked for me of course, but my friends seemed to be fighting the ladies off, sometimes it got so bad that me and my warlock buddies had to intervene. We were never thanked.
I think in that little microcosm of pubescent life lays a simple message: others can have it worse. Some poor bastard out there renders your own problems infinitesimal. Yeah ok, you may have the fashion-sense of someone that got dressed in a typhoon, in the dark, and lost a bet, from the 1970’s, but somewhere is an equally challenged chap with dandruff like snowflakes and a club-foot the size of a watermelon. But still, this feeling that someone else has it worse still pervades, even during the face of Stage 4 lockdown extension until the end of September or October. The hope is they’re still talking about 2020.
Travelling has always given me perspective, as too has just seeing other people. I used to take solace in others: I mean, look at that guy with teeth like broken picket-fence, and that girl with the nose the size of a potato! And then just when you think the world can’t teach you anything, another lesson: apparently, it’s considered rude to say all this in front of said misfits, pointing and staring like they’re behind glass at a zoo. But now all these people fit perfectly into life. No longer can I holler across the road, “oiii, teeeethhhhh!!!” when 90% of their face is covered in hair or a mask. In future copies of Playgirl, they’ll just show a mouth, and people will be swooning in the aisles. “Oh my goodness”, women will quiver, touching imaginary pearls to their chest. “I saw that man’s upper lip, the shame!”
I just finished Bill Bryson’s The Body, and along with Malcolm Gladwell’s superb The Tipping Point, it presciently calls out the danger of an oncoming flu. We were warned and it was all right in front of us, just like our masks. It’s with some succour that if a future goddess had come back to warn us, all we’d have heard from behind her mask anyway would have been, ‘fnufff n fnuefff feefffffufff’, which is some pretty racy stuff if you’re a warlock.
Although most of Sunday will be spent yelling ‘Wakanda Forever!’ as I trudge about the house, dedicating yourself whole-heartedly to one thing for your entire life is just weird. Yet there is great pressure on ‘the youth’ to find their purpose in life, to join companies and ‘make a difference’ before you’ve even found your desk. It’s what they are continually spoon fed. What is the meaning of your life? You’ve just completed your degree, what will you apply yourself to for the next fifty years? Kerrrriiiiisssttttt! (Note: if it is Christ, that’s fine too).
Einstein, one of the greatest minds in humanity, studied physics but couldn’t hold down a job (the putz!) so became a patent clerk for seven years, following his scientific interests outside of that. He wrote theoretical papers (that seems a dichotomy!), gained a PhD and taught theoretical physics. Visiting the US in 1933, he stayed to avoid Hitler’s iron-grip, wrote to Roosevelt about the potential for nuclear war, got involved in the Manhattan Project, published numerous more scientific papers, championed Zionist causes, and yet his biggest joy in life was actually music. This from a man that couldn’t even count.
Beyonce is a singer of which I know nothing (wait . . . all the single ladies . . . oh-oh-oooohhh!!), yet she is probably one of the most influential artists in history. From starting out as a songstress and quickly becoming one of the biggest-selling female groups of all time, she is a writer, producer, film-maker, dancer, founded her own entertainment company, has her own fashion chain and music streaming service, and has become involved in numerous philanthropic charities. Her proudest moment in life is being a mother.
Elon Musk followed his father into engineering (Errol was a pilot, sailor, consultant, property developer and engineer), studied physics and economics, then became a developer. Elon’s first company was creating internet city-guides, then he started a financial payment system which later developed into PayPal, giving him money to explore his passion for space exploration, founding SpaceX. In the last ten years he’s started companies in electric cars, solar power, underground tunnelling, the hyperloop and combining his love of artificial intelligence with directly interfacing to the brain – of which he announced a breakthrough yesterday. One of those is an achievement for a lifetime, to accomplish all of them is mental. I have no idea what Elon’s love is, although being a complete twat on occasion to British divers is fairly high up there.
Each one of the above examples though starts out on one arc and diverges massively. To quote psychologist, author and Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl in Man’s Search for Meaning, the meaning of life is searching for your meaning of life. It won’t be the same now as it will be in twenty years, nor even in five years, maybe not even this week. Today? Well, that’s already decided.
If there was one piece of advice I could give, it would be to take more risks: try different things; be curious; spread your net far and wide, as eventually you’ll find one or many things that will ignite your soul. Perhaps start with this basic premise from another black icon, Will Smith: “If you’re not making someone else’s life better, then you’re wasting your time”.
It’s quite something to start off a blog exclaiming how incredible I am, but there you go. Sometimes you have to just hold your hands up . . . and then simply marvel at how that happens: signals travelling millionths of a second from your brain down the spine, through shoulders to your arms, translating into actions where muscles, tendons and bones all seamlessly combine to perform the action. If you still have your hands up, maybe take the chance to sing ‘oooooh-ohh-oh, oh-oh-oooooh-oh . . . all the single ladies . . .’ whilst you’re there? No? Just a thought.
I spent the week reading Bill Bryson’s The Body – A Guide for Occupant, a tour de force of self-admiration. We are evolutionary wonder machines, true forces of nature. Every few pages inherently ends up in me messaging someone (usually an unsuspecting Regi) with another fascinating piece of knowledge. The genetic codes spanning millennia, the choices our ancestors made for you to even exist are ridiculous - for a glimpse of that, you can’t go wrong with Stephen Baxter’s Evolution. Through this evolutionary process we walk upright, communicate, developed opposable thumbs, have developed acute senses to interpret the world around us, can anticipate seconds or years in advance, can learn and adapt, sing and dance (oooooh-ohh-oh, oh-oh-oooooh-oh . . .), all controlled by using our big brains. To draw from the unparalleled Bill Bryson, everything you know about the world is from an organ that has never seen the light of day. Astonishingly, sitting quietly doing nothing i.e. everyone in lockdown, your brain churns through more information in thirty seconds than the Hubble Telescope can process in thirty years. It’s estimated the human brain is capable of holding two hundred exabytes of information, or looking at it another way, ‘the entire digital content of today’s world’. Makes you feel pretty damned silly though when you misplace your keys, doesn’t it?
Take another look at that jellified, pink body of yours, even that pot belly. You’re a goddamn disgrace! But also, you’re staring at probably the most biologically advanced species in the entire universe. When I was a kid, I was often shocked visiting friends’ houses – all right, all right, friend, imaginary – that their parents didn’t discuss the past 13.8 billion years and how we came to now. My Dad did, and does, constantly mention the infinitesimally small chances of alien life. Evolution takes time, and the universe is still young. For example, if you stretch your arms out wide (lots of exercise today!), let’s imagine your arm-span is the timeline from the birth of the universe on your left middle-finger to when all stars in the universe die on your right. Now, if the Big Bang started on the left, at the tip of the nail, how far do you think the universe has aged in that time i.e. where are we now? The answer is we’re about a width of a very slender human hair along. We may not only be force of nature, but freaks too. Some more than others.
I haphazardly picked up the Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs by Carmine Gallo in the last fortnight, not expecting much, but came out with a whole new perspective. To found one multi-million-dollar company is enough for a lifetime, to manage it thrice (Pixar, Next and Apple) is alien. His sheer drive and leadership were simply astonishing. Could he have changed his clothes more? Probably. With his apparent adversity to washing, perhaps he was more of a ‘actually, you can leave your hands down’ kind of guy.
What am I listening to? ‘Science Vs’ Podcasts hosted by some insightful and funny women from America and Australia. The episodes on 5G and Sleep are excellent, only run for half an hour, and have enough bad jokes to make me guffaw as I get my steps in.
What am I reading? Bill’s book is a chunky one, that’ll keep me going a while
What has piqued my interest? 5G use-cases and how this could transform our world. A US $4.3 trillion industry awaits.
I refuse to turn 40. Not having it. Nope, no way, fu** off, blah blah blah!!! I’m not approaching my third-of-the-way-life crisis or anything like that, am more than comfortable with the miles on the clock, just that I refuse for this to be it in terms of celebrating in lockdown where I can’t go to a café or a restaurant, see friends (look at me, plural!!), walk outside past 8pm or actually be outside for more than an hour. I shall celebrate this properly at a later date. Still accepting cake, cards and well wishes though!
I just picked up The Body, which sounds far more ominous than intended. However, only a few pages in and I’m basking in the literate glow of Bill Bryson’s latest book, finding fascination from within. After finishing Stephen Fry’s book on Greek Mythology, Mythos, during the week, it’ll be a nice little introspective adventure with Bryon’s usual revelry. In the backlog is Richard Layard’s Happiness and The Spirit Level: Why more Equal Societies Almost Always Do Better (lot of graphs!) by Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett.
To blow minds this week, I bored my team at work with a few facts about the magical number 40. Prepare yourselves, as it is assuredly fascinating i.e. using my week of HelloFresh cooking as a backdrop, let’s say it’s a sauté of tedium, a dash of tiresome with just a little drizzle of interest. To start, you nap for forty-winks, there is the Top-40 music charts in the UK and you work a forty-hour week (pardon me, ‘work’). Forty is the only number in English whose letters appear in alphabetical order, which is nice as it’s always been a worry for my OCD, and for those that can never remember the Celsius to Fahrenheit conversion, you can draw comfort that both are the same at 40 below i.e. brisk. In religion, forty is often short-hand for ‘a long time’: Jesus fasted for forty days; the flood lasted forty days and nights; Abraham and his people wandered for forty years. UB40 was a band in the UK that made listening to records feel like a long time, and when read aloud, I do be forty, so that’s good too.
My favourite of all though, given the pandemic, is when the bubonic plague gripped Europe during the Middle Ages, ships would be isolated in harbor for forty days before passengers could go ashore. The Italian word for forty is quaranta, hence quarantine. Mind blown, or what? Oh, come on, are you made of stone!? Will look that up in Bill’s book and see if within the composition of the body, ‘stone = XX%’ appears.
In times when people are cursing their misfortune during the pandemic, I am absolutely counting my blessings. Regi asked me yesterday what my highlight would be of my forty years (apart from meeting her) and I’d have to say it’s the love and support from my family and friends, the countless people I’ve met over the years, from all walks of life, a kaleidoscope of cultures, beliefs and backgrounds. I am truly blessed. Thank you for your friendship, it means a great deal more than you probably realise.
Much love, take care, happy quaranta!
It’s very easy to become distracted, to forget how immensely good we’ve had it, and still have it. Whilst I wouldn’t recommend bouncing around a flat on your own for five weeks – naked Thursday gets repetitive when it’s daily - it has given rise to lucid yet outlandish, preposterous, exciting dreams. For example, this one time, I was going to the cinema, the smell of the salted popcorn wafting through the foyer, a delicious five-gallon drum of icy coke in my hand and some Snake lollies in the other, the air of expectation and electricity amongst the throng walking to the theatre, the audience quietening as the curtain lifted on the screen . . . and then the film began, and we all watched it, and had a nice time. Outrageous! Then someone coughs, and we collectively lose our shit.
There are many positives to lockdown though, and I’ve had to re-read old blog-posts and talk to friends and family to sometimes recapture that. I’m reading continually and deeply, without distraction, I’m writing a great deal (just finished the first draft of the second book, hit me up if you want to do some proof-reading!), working on a business idea with a friend, getting together some material for a magazine submission on an old motorcycle trip, fixing new spotlights to a motorcycle I can’t take out (ermmm . . .), submitting images into a monthly photography competitions, listening to audiobooks when trying to get my 10k steps in before the 8pm curfew, and occasionally exercising to keep my body, hewn from biscuits and coke, in prime shape. And that prime shape is round. Less barrel-chested, more biscuit-barrelled.
Reminiscing on David Schwartz tome, The Magic Of Thinking Big, the core message is that you’re a product of the environment you choose for yourself. I like that. The environment you choose for yourself. There is one term from the book I have used continually: psychological sunshine. Pack your environment with positivity to stimulate your mental health, enhance your down-time and make the most of the moments with those you love. Because tomorrow, who knows what the day will bring? Naked Thursday again, probably.
What am I reading? Stephen Fry’s Mythos on Greek Mythology
What am I listening to? The Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs by Carmine Gallo on BorrowBox, and also Rage Against the Machine’s Battle of Los Angeles. All hell can’t stop us now.
Writing and writing...