Category Archives: Blogging

The accidental hypocrite & the fake plants that died because he didn’t pretend to water them…

Sorrow can be alleviated by good sleep, a bath and a glass of wine…

Thomas Aquinas

Nikon026x600Just as my wise and decidedly erstwhile therapist once neglected to tell me voluntarily, if you ain’t got none then fake some— something which was no doubt passed down from one learned bejacketed chap to another and then to him in order to band-aid folk in desperate need, for reasons both earth shattering or as erroneous as whatever mine happened to be at the time. Now just happens to be time to water the plastic tree and I don’t even consider myself to be overly sceptical. But I must confess to considering such sandwich-filler philosophy to be some kind of joke that few, of which I wasn’t one of those who were in on; or that perhaps this was his idea of faking it, and in some round about way, was him subtly demonstrating how to use the prescription.

Whatever it was, I accepted it and have attempted to use it many times since with varying degrees of success and failure I might add— all with the exception of sincerity, since I’ve found it’s the one thing that if you can fake, you can fake anything. As for me, my hypocrisy only goes so far and since I have so few opportunities to be genuinely sincere these days, I much prefer giving it a go the old fashioned way. Besides, it also seems to be something that becomes rarer with the passing of time. I suppose a lot of the ‘pretending’ nonsense is much better suited to young folk and their flexible skin, as my walrus-like derma gives the game away with far too much swift to be considered fair game— and I’m not one to be deliberately foolish, any more than I am to be accidentally hypocritical.

Enough as they say is quite enough. I’ve reached that unfortunate point in any period of sub-par-ness, whereby I’ll actually start rewinding moments and days in an attempt to fathom the unfathomable, or at the very least, the invisible bottom which deserves my unreserved wrath to be turned spittoon and crazed. It’s imprecise, futile and impossible to spank. Nope, it merely adds to the joylessness of something which belongs confined to the golf course. I’ve even begun harbouring ill thoughts concerning my recent trip— that if I hadn’t gone everything would’ve been fine, I’d still be sleeping and working and perfect— but that’s B.S. as well. For starters, I don”t believe it, secondly, I needed a break and had a wonderful time— I’m not much of a drinker these days and nothing quite validates the conscience like a change of scenery whilst corking a splendid Pinot Noir in the late ante meridiem on a school day. Nope, it wasn’t that and I bear nothing but resentment for even thinking it.

What I needed yesterday was some perspective and if I couldn’t muster any, I just had to fake some. I needed to lash my resentment and throttle my ill thoughts with a dash of fake perspective and put away all that reflection nonsense, because the last thing I needed was for my last trip to be the last I ever have— that just won’t do— I like a large glass of wine before lunch from time to time; and since the issue at hand isn’t really all that complicated: mainly sleep with perhaps a few pre-operation nerves thrown in for good measure, I decided to get some sleep-aids to knock me out, so at least I might be able to start unreversing the bollocks. If I can’t sleep, I might as well fake that too.

Anyway, I took a few of them last night and must’ve nodded off pretty quickly, because the next thing I remember is coming to, at least feeling like I’d had a good nap— gave a little nod to gods— and got up to make a cup of tea before realising it was still only 12.25.

And that was twelve hours ago—

 I’m going to shower and go shopping for something a bit stronger I think…

Concerning socks…

The Alternative Advent: Day 5

socks gps etcStrange things are afoot—

And far far stranger than feet…

The disappearance of socks is an enduring mystery for sure. As far as phenomena go, it is quite simply the Linear B of domestic curiosities. I’m not sure if it’s a complex which manifests as frustration owing to the bewilderment that surrounds it; its very odd ubiquitousness that gives it its general appeal thus adding to an already confounding character; or the fact this vicious cycle is in some-way exacerbated by the spinning nature of washing the things in the first place. Whatever it is, it is the exception to the rule of what goes around, comes around, because all too frequently, socks forget to do the latter.

It certainly isn’t an occurrence isolated by a dip in landmass, since no mater how far from the edge of whatever body of water one may loiter, the chasm of lost socks is a deep and peculiar one.

It’s so peculiar in fact, that I couldn’t possibly hazard a say as to where they go either— not even if I was in the mood to inkle readily; and this despite years of spying on them. It’s an embarrassing thing to admit: being outwitted by foot-sheaths, but there you go— I can say it’s been a trait of my own laundry-blues where ever I goand it is this, above all else which seems to be its most irritating irony.

How is it that lost socks seem to follow a person despite being so utterly incapable of staying in the one place?

It would be all too convenient to dismiss the disappearance of socks after a good spin in the same way we do the the appearance of bright lights in the sky— you wouldn’t normally associate high jinx with an item of clothing after all; but there is something otherworldly about it. So much so, the thought of attaching GPS to something meant to comfort you whilst walking, instead of causing unrest by walking off— would be pointless, particularly when there are far more useful ways to examine the limits of these devices.

I’ve often wondered what time is it at the North Pole exactly, and whether there is something about 90 degrees North that’d cause the signal to malfunction. It’s the romantic in me that’d like to believe these devices would think of this latitude as an infinite.

In many ways, it’s thought trains like this that’ve always had me wondering whether there are more practical uses for such equipment. For instance, I’ve long imagined modifying underwater sonar technology to produce the world’s most powerful, independently targeted loud speakers. Just the thought of being able to pick out a particular person with a focused packet of sound that remained inaudible until bouncing would be highly jinxing indeed…

But such a fleeting mention seems a waste of an Alternative Advent to me, and unless I’m very much mistaken nothing whatsoever to do with socks.

Five minutes with a laptop however is quite adequate to put that right— and there’s nowhere more chuckle inducing than a quick browse of the patents pages, as the lengths that some will go to describe their ‘inventions’ is truly comic…

There are radiation-free boat socks; two-way socks, described as a sock structure with two sides both capable of being worn; shoes with socks which may have additional miniature stylish designs; toe-independent antibiosis and stink prevention socks which describe the ‘processing process thereof’; outdoor waterproof non-slip Pet Socks;the antibacterial warm-keeping wearable sock; latex toe sock; Acupoint therapy socks, which you could be forgiven for thinking they’re to be recycled after use in the kitchen

However, in keeping with the issue of hungry white appliances with a taste for tubular threads, I did find a device for keeping paired socks and similar before, during and after washing, imaginatively called: A device for keeping paired socks and similar before, during and after washing.

But no mention whatsoever of GPS…

A noted poet was once asked in an interview if he could explain one of his poems, in ordinary terms. He replied with some feeling:

If I could say what I meant in ordinary terms I would not have had to write the poem…

I feel exactly the same way about blogging

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Agatha Christie punks Plato; MacGyver, great inventions & perfect pencils…

A sub-continuation and tangentoid:

And the greatest of all inventors is: Accidents—

They happen…

522756_10150808745566041_675659681_nPlato may have been a bit of a know it all, back in the days when knowing nothing actually meant something— but I think he dropped the ball and let it run away from himself a tad, when he cited ‘necessity’ as the ‘true creator’, owing to ‘it’ being invention’s mother. I find that just a little bit creepy— and though it has a certain elegance to it; Agatha Christie’s rebuttal: I don’t think necessity is the mother of invention. Invention, in my opinion, arises directly from idleness, possibly also from laziness— to save oneself trouble, hits closer to the bull.

So whether it is something creepy, idleness, dissatisfaction; or something quite accidental that compels us to create— there should still be somewhere to go, to help necessitate our clumsiness; especially if an emergency dictates it. The fact it works around the other way just adds to the flavour.

Have you ever been caught short with a dozen house guests on the way a day earlier than expected,and found you had nothing to feed them but rubber bands and shoe polish? Because I assure you that not only would it taint the entire evening and your guests ability to taste anything for a week— the vol-au-vent would end up a little— how does one put it? Chewy.

Fortunately, I’m not speaking from experience because, surprise-surprise it’s never happened. But if it had and I were someone other than me— I’d be crying out for the website that sadly does not exist— but should.

As good as Google or that Jeeves chap may be with the ins and outs of how best to bake the perfect plum-duff— He doesn’t really have the answers to practical, everyday problems involving malevolent computers; how to prevent your coffee from tasting of fish; or feed a dozen hungry people with household products without killing them; or without at least, turning their mouths a funny colour.

Now this could be simply, a matter of testosterone, but I don’t think suggesting we drug the poor fellow would go down too well. Not after all the tireless help he gives children with their homework.

This website could be the solution:

Ask MacGyver!

Just because he has the know-how to make Gatling Guns from paper clips doesn’t mean he’s going to divulge potentially lethal information to children. That sort of thing would be strictly limited to the grown ups.

So my idea is to entice MacGyver out of retirement, where ever that may be— and have him help salvage peoples’ dinner parties and protect them against invasion armies with nothing but the contents of a child’s pencil case…

Even perfect people buy pencils with erasures on them;

Except me of course…

And I’m quite aware of the consequences of writing that!

Martian Shock Therapy…

Thematic Semantics: Point A—

Flap you b@#$%&?!

Rod Hull

taster of london with nick 05Since its inception, I’ve found myself plodding along at a far steadier pace than I had intended— especially after a lay off as long I had; but I’m pretty sure I’m enjoying myself upon more than just similar lines. As such I’m more than willing to play more. If one is able to do after all— it’s criminal not to; so do, is what I’m doing.

I had intended to weave a little Welles into my thoughts— but it’s far too important a thing to have lost, wasted in ridiculous so soon without a little context to grease the tracks first— besides, if I keep it up, I’ll have exceeded half of all the probabilities I’d originally set myself, and in the hood of all likeliness— I’ll be lucky to fill the other.

Although, that being said, I do have the odd treat up my sleeve— it’s not as if I have it planned as much as it’s more a case of learning to fly again by jumping out of a plane with someone with a parachute beside me asking, with some urgency I might add, ‘why aren’t you flapping?’

So, from the springboard of planes and parachutes, it’s quite possible to take monkeys, aliens, world-domination and even woman around a peculiar semantic merry-go-round; such are the contextual marvels of alternative thought. But like all good things, we must start at point A. And for the next few days I’ll be following a thematic-chain which will no doubt lead me right back to here, past through and perhaps over some of these most inevitable of categories.

The reason for my desired launchpad is owing to the quasi-obssession I’ve had for many years with the first 45 minutes of Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds. It has a tendency to collapse in on itself during the second half which is hardly a crime as there have been many very good works falling short of greatness owing to a lack of lustre in their final third— but for three quarters of an hour we are treated to one of the greatest voices there’s ever been narrating away with his life, very much in the balance— we even get to hear him say whoosh— which makes the fee for the CD alone, worth an admission.

If I had Richard Burton’s voice for a day, I would make my million and retire— so long as my ‘million’ was pounds and not just trilbies for a secret army of chimps; which would be quite ridiculous. There’s not a scenario I can imagine where I’d actually be able to keep an army of chimps secret. And it’s not through a lack of trying.

Anywise, the Martians have this great war-cry. Actually, it’s the only thing they do say, which is probably why they’re so angry and destructive in the first place: it’s a cry for help, an out-shout for a better vocabulary: we want your planet and your dictionary. It certainly resonates far stronger with me, than some nonsense about the proliferation of their species.

But instead they caught a cold. But not before crying ooohlaaa! a few times, which is actually pretty creepy as it is. However, if you isolate it; run it through a few filters, transpose it a little then play it a little louder than is really necessary, it becomes positively disturbing. And what is especially alarming is if you allow your computer to cry it out whenever it feels like it.

Half a dozen times a day I used to hear it and every time I’d get one of those wtf moments— you’d expect after a while that the nerves would take a bit of a shredding, but it actually became quite therapeutic, particularly when it provided an excuse to leak sentences…

And with that, we’ll just have to see where it takes us.

We will peck them to death to-morrow, my dear…

H.G. Wells, The War of the Worlds

It’s one of the finest things we do…

Write about our lives, because not only do we reveal our minds through revelations our thoughts provide us—

But it gives us an incentive to be honest…

cass twig air up hangingIt’s almost impossible not to consider the value of thoughts with the fairly steady flow of them; their rudimentary worth, relevance to our lives and the importance to the people who have them. It’s easy to see how distorted a thought can become when left to constant re-examination and how faceless victim/culprit dichotomies are given grounding by a name or a hover-card. If the last few weeks has demonstrated anything, it’s how something as simple as a pen-stroke can release the burden and stresses they invariably cause. I’ve had glimpses into how fears, confessions, pains and crises can be put right by words creating deeds by changing little parts of the world. And I shouldn’t be surprised: we write about things and repeat ourselves about things that have meaning to us.

It keeps me humble…

Two fortnights; four weeks; one month or thirty very odd days…

To a month of links and thinking differently;

And a little bit of noise—

I hope it’s been some fun…

coacheswar-crimescricketbreadsticksblogging cats baby-sitting aboutbad-teaching balloons  ettiquette  coffee furniture girl gnomes habits grammar house-sitting immigration golf knitting meltdown marshmallows lost miniamlism nail-clippings onearmed man rules procrastination phone-calls senses shit pockets sick

stuffed-cats superhero syntax

I would rather entertain and hope that people learned something than educate people and hope they were entertained…

Walt Disney

The who gives a #@%& pocket, more about cats & the dangers of hand-held fans…

A three piece discord—

And the cunning of the third person…

go to break earlyAs I enter the third day under the roof of ignominious, quasi-disharmony, I decided I ought best choose my words carefully in case my laptop is bugged. And though diligence is not something that comes naturally with a pen in hand, I feel it’s quite possible the being spied upon trope is not an over-reaction, and my house-guest has not gone shopping at all.

I actually considered writing this in the third person to induce ignoratio elenchi and befuddle my would-be observers, but not only would that’ve been far too weird, it would’ve contravened one of my personal laws. To describe my loathing of self-referential utterances in the third-person as rules, would be an affront to my very soul: rules are merely principals to be observed. Laws on the other hand: something to be obeyed. It is called illesim and it’s creepy. Salvador Dali did it once in a televised interview, but if you remember my piece on minimalism, he also once had to be rescued from a deep-sea divers suit with a pair of pliers…

Anyway, as I’ve accepted a luncheon invitation and’d found a suitable pause in my morning’s work, I thought I’d jot down some of my recent acquisitions, one of my old ones, skip the overture and play the second of three specially recorded: symphony of words:

I’ve discovered that it’s part of cats’ original sin to lure their owners into a down-pour wearing dressing-gowns only to be snubbed at the last moment; and playing with a hand-held-fan too close to close to someone’s hair can leave the blades entangled in it. The latter occurred last evening and I have been looking over my shoulder ever since, hence my spy-awareness.

Personally, I can’t really see what all the fuss is about, even my sister laughed, so it must’ve been a little bit funny, even though by then the turbine had actually begun to groan. There was no permanent damage and the marvellous fro-effect was upsettingly temporary.

And lastly, otherwise I’m really going to be late, is the who gives a @#$% pocket. I’d like to call it an invention, but I believe it to be a naturally occurring phenomena, something we all have; and just like addictions or imaginary friends: we just have to acknowledge it’s there. They are simple to use and needn’t be particularly large since they aren’t designed for non-specific items, as it will soon become clear.

Have you ever been in a situation where you have been questioned unnecessarily, or had to endure the dribbling of an inferior; been put on the spot with the express intention to cause yourself embarrassment? Had to suffer the nonsensical ravings of a co-worker, family friend or house-guest?

If the answer is yes, then the who gives a @#$% pocket is like a vacuum for all these things and more. You see, for Baloney Detection Networks and Hemmingway’s bullshit detector to become something more performative, they need a Ghostbusters-like containment unit.

So the next time someone you know has been savaging your ears relentlessly for a month or more about the same old rubbish and you’ve reached the limits of all fissionable care, here’s what you say:

Wait a second, let me look in my who gives a @#$% pocket

You look, then you say: nope, the @#$%er’s empty…

You see the charm and size of your imaginary compartment is both infinitely variable and irreverent because not only is it yours and yours alone, but the @#$%er’s always empty. I discovered it quite by chance one day and have been smiling about it ever since.

Stupidity is infinitely more fascinating that intelligence. Intelligence has its limits while stupidity has none…

Claude Chabrol
 

It’s a contentious issue, but I can’t help feeling the powers that be have missed a trick with their immigration policies…

It’s bows and arrows against the lightning

They ‘aven’t seen that fire-beam yet…

Herbert George Wells, War of the Worlds

394934_10150749353871041_1787771566_nIn the Telegraph today, Douglas Carswell writes:

“For years, the debate about immigration has been dominated by “experts”.

“Complex and inaccessible data was used by remote academics. They crunched the numbers and were left to draw the conclusions. The rest of us had to take it on trust that the facts sustained what they told us.”

The Guardian’s Mary Dejevsky agrees somewhat and tells us [the] immigration debate is not just about numbers … We have to consider people’s daily experience too:

“[The] Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration at University College London, found arrivals from the European economic area (EEA) since 1995 to have been even more of an asset to the UK economy than previously thought. They had, it calculated, contributed £8.8bn over the 15 years between 1995 and 2011, and if you considered only the past 10 years, the balance was even more positive.”

However Steve Doughty from The Daily Mail, read the same report and interpreted it slightly differently, claiming that :

“Immigrants from outside Europe have taken £100billion more in benefits and services than they paid back in taxes, a major study revealed yesterday.

“Over a 16-year period, the bill to the taxpayer of providing them with welfare, health and education was 14 per cent higher than the money they put in the national purse.”

This is a problem— when our source material is provided by unimpeachable sources but the conclusions drawn from it are wildly disparate, I’m afraid either the nature of the data or the conclusions must be rendered as lacking validity. At least in a usable, practicable way. Studies ought to inform, not divide in such a binary manner.

This is not a new problem. In an article in Scientific American, Patternicity: Finding Meaningful Patterns in Meaningless Noise, Michael Shermer writes about the mechanisms that allow us to see such differences; it also alows us to see bunny rabbits in fluffy clouds— the same mechanism which results in ‘complex and inaccessible data’ being summarised and presented as fact, while ignoring that:

Unfortunately, we did not evolve a Baloney Detection Network in the brain to distinguish between true and false patterns.”

It is describing a form of apophenia: the ability we have to see what we want to see; or more simply, the ability to make sense when there is none.  In fact, the irony is, I too could be doing just that, but I’ll be describing how I perceive the opinion process in another post, I just wanted to get the Baloney Detection Network out there because I love it, just as much as Hemmingway’s bullshit detector. It’s more or less the same thing.

Anyway, no amount of numbers can alter the fact that immigration is simply someone moving from one place to another. So I ask you, simply

Why not just employ nightclub doormen as immigration officials?

Have you ever tried getting into a club if your name wasn’t on the list?

It’s just a thought…