Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Carnage, simply carnage

I've been giving a bit of thought to that mythical principal the spiritual giants of this word refer to as rigours honesty. To be totally honest in every single situation no matter what the consequences, I mean, really? are you sure? honestly?

The thing is, the idea of total honesty can from time to time sound like a really cool concept, after all don't most of us admire honesty? But where do we draw the line? When will total honesty cause more harm the good? And how do we know? The problem is that up to a point we all love it, trouble is once we go past that point we hardly ever have the ability to be honest.

Of course we lie from time to time, anyone who says they don't are quite frankly lying. I think the folk who claim anything close to total honesty are the ones telling the most lies. Surely its not about being perfectly honest, it can't be about being perfectly anything. My thinking is it has to be about the people around us, the ones who's lives we touch and who's lives touch ours. It seems common sense that if we can learn to practice this stuff with the people close to us, we have half a chance to practice it with the world at large.

So the practice begins at home and some might find you lie just a little from time to time without even thinking about it. Just skip through this one with me.... Your wife of ten years wedges herself into a dress she looked great in eight years and three and a half stone ago. Across the bedroom you notice the terrific stress put on the eight year old fabric, you can see the buttons hanging on by a thread.

As a man of the world you are well aware of the risks. If you move in closer, it could cost you an eye. If the whole row of buttons went it would be like a Gatling Gun, carnage, simply carnage. Then comes the question, "babe, what do you think?" Within a split second you find your self complementing her on the potential dress of death, all the time keeping an escape route in mind for fear that she may blow.

So where is the balance? For me most of the time its fairly straight forward. If I'm lying to cover up something I shouldn't of done in the first place, to cover my own arse, to rip someone off, if it's grounded in self, chances are its gona come back and screw me at some point.

If on the other hand its about the other person, then, and only then I might need to be slightly less then totally honest. When my beloved son starts riding a bike, and falling off all the time, I'll resist the temptation to point out how crap he's doing. I'll lie, I'll look him in the eye and tell him he's doing great, even if he isn't. I'll tell him about Father Christmas and the Tooth Fairy, I'll tell him it wont hurt when I know it will, and I'll love him every step of the way. Truth is I'll do this in lots of different ways with lot's of different people, that's my experience, my truth. If I ever tell you a lie, I sincerely hope it's for your good, not mine.                  

Monday, 27 September 2010

Just snapping

I remember the days of the old SLR with 35mm film. Everything was manual and you never knew what you were going to get until the film was developed. Some of the old traditional folk out there will say that's the way it should be, that's what real photography is all about.

Personally, I think that's bollocks, I'm a big fan of the digital SLR. Even the dumbest of the dumb can usually manage to get a good shot once in a great while. You might need to take a couple of hundred to find it, but so what. It's as simple as deleting the crap and what's left is pure genius.

I like that, I like the easy softer option and the modern age is all about that. So the question for me is quite simple, do I live as a ludite in the past? Or do I make an effort to keep up with the modern word and have an easy time of it? As Nikon prepare to release yet another marvel on the world of photography, I'll be watching, waiting and getting ready for a life of ease, what about you?

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Saturday, 25 September 2010

The things people say.

12 of the finest unintentional double-entendres aired on British TV and radio -

1. Ted Walsh - Horse Racing Commentator - 'This is really a lovely horse. I once rode her mother.'

2. New Zealand Rugby Commentator - 'Andrew Mehrtens loves it when Daryl Gibson comes inside of him.'

3. Pat Glenn, weightlifting commentator - 'And this is Gregoriava from Bulgaria . I saw her snatch this morning and it was amazing!

4. Harry Carpenter at the Oxford-Cambridge boat race 1977 - 'Ah, isn't that nice. The wife of the Cambridge President is kissing the Cox of the Oxford crew.'

5. US PGA Commentator - 'One of the reasons Arnie (Arnold Palmer) is playing so well is that, before each tee shot, his wife takes out his balls and kisses them. Oh my god !! What have I just said??'

6. Carenza Lewis about finding food in the Middle Ages on 'Time Team Live' said: 'You'd eat beaver if you could get it.'

7. A female news anchor who, the day after it was supposed to have snowed and didn't, turned to the weatherman and asked, 'So Bob, where's that eight inches you promised me last night?' Not only did HE have to leave the set, but half the crew did too, because they were laughing so hard!

8. Steve Ryder covering the US Masters: 'Ballesteros felt much better today after a 69 yesterday.'

9. Clair Frisby talking about a jumbo hot dog on 'Look North' said: 'There's nothing like a big hot sausage inside you on a cold night like this. '

10 Mike Hallett discussing missed snooker shots on 'Sky Sports': 'Stephen Hendry jumps on Steve Davis's misses every chance he gets.'

11. Michael Buerk on watching Philippa Forrester cuddle up to a male astronomer for warmth during BBC1's UK eclipse coverage remarked: 'They seem cold out there. They're rubbing each other and he's only come in his shorts.'

12.. Ken Brown commentating on golfer Nick Faldo and his caddie Fanny Sunneson lining-up shots at the Scottish Open: 'Some weeks Nick likes to use Fanny; other weeks he prefers to do it by himself.'

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Friday, 24 September 2010

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Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Stupid is.

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." -Albert Einstein
"Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and consciencious stupidity." -Martin Luther King, Jr.
"Men are born ignorant, not stupid. They are made stupid by education." -Bertrand Russell
"The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt." -Bertrand Russell

"Stupid is as stupid does."-Forrest Gump
"The stupid neither forgive nor forget; the naïve forgive and forget; the wise forgive but do not forget."-Thomas Szasz
"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."-George Bernard Shaw
"The ugly and the stupid have the best of it in this world. They can sit at their ease and gape at the play. If they know nothing of victory, they are at least spared the knowledge of defeat."-Oscar Wilde
"The only thing that ever consoles man for the stupid things he does is the praise he always gives himself for doing them."-Oscar Wilde
"It is dangerous to be sincere unless you are also stupid."-George Bernard Shaw
"Only in Britain could it be thought a defect to be 'too clever by half.' The probability is that too many people are too stupid by three-quarters."-John Major

"You have to believe in God before you can say there are things that man was not meant to know. I don’t think there’s anything man wasn’t meant to know. There are just some stupid things that people shouldn’t do."-David Cronenberg

I've lined them both up for examination

I wonder why it is that sometimes the simplest of decisions can take up so much head space. A case in point is a case for my phone. As previous readers will know I recently became the owner of a iphone 4, much to the dismay of Mrs D. Of-course being a responsible chap I purchased a suitable case to protect said item from the perilous world at large and set about forging a happy life with my new phone.

Then along came apple with a free case for every iphone owner. Why not I thought, what harm can it do, after all it won't cost a penny. If only things were that simple, you see what apple did with this freebie was give me a choice. A choice where there was no necessity, bastards! The result is I've spent the last two hours trying to decide what case to put on my phone. I've lined them both up for examination, tested them for weight, flexibility and general looks. The end result? I've left the dam phone exactly as it was before in the case I started with.

Things of this ilk have so very often been the case for me. The more choice I have, the more I'm likely to over analyse and complicate. You should see me in burger king, I know what I like but will still spend twenty minutes thinking about having something new. In the end I always end up with a quarter pounder. I guess in some ways this is a good thing, I'm generally very happy with my life and mostly it feels like I've made the right choices along the way. So  I think I'll try and keep it that way, same phone case, same quarter pounder same smile.                  

Sunday, 19 September 2010

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A day in Winchester 2

And the wife came along to.
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A day in Winchester.

Spent a couple of hours in Winchester today with the boy and Mrs D. Every time I get in front of the old Hampshire grenadiers stone I can't help thinking of Bill Wilson standing in the same place. The fact the stone it's self has been replaced and Bill got the quote wrong seem to make no difference what so ever. History is such a cool thing and when you can touch it, well it's even better. All those years ago Bill knew nothing of the fellowship in front of him, but we do. To each and every one out there who knows what i'm on about, let's enjoy it eh?

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Saturday, 18 September 2010

Self saluting

The tobacco smoke enema, an insufflation of tobacco smoke into the rectum by enema, was a medical treatment employed by European physicians for a range of ailments.
Tobacco was recognised as a medicine soon after it was first imported from the New World, and tobacco smoke was used by western medical practitioners as a tool against cold and drowsiness, but applying it by enema was a technique appropriated from the North American Indians.
The procedure was used to treat gut pain, and attempts were often made to resuscitate victims of near drowning. Liquid tobacco enemas were often given to ease the symptoms of a hernia.

Talk about bringing a new meaning to the phrase blowing some up your arse. Its an odd thing how we can be so very sure something is a great idea at the time then a little further down the line it turns out to be a dumb as you like. I guess smoking has been like that for many folk, for sure over the years its been like that for me.

I remember the hard work I had to put into learning to smoke and why I bothered. The truth of the matter is it was just so cool I couldn't resist. Obviously I knew it was not that good for my health, but it was cool and at the tender age of twelve that was enough. I have to admit, if I had to smoke through my arse, I may never have tried it, no matter how cool people told me it was. Probably not.

History seems to be littered with stupid ideas, and I like that. I know as a race mankind have come up with a ton of great life changing, mind blowing and revolutionary inventions and ideas that have changed the word, but I still prefer the dumb fuck-up ones because once in a great while you might just stumble on a stroke of pure genus.

The almost brilliant self saluting hat is a case in point. Just imagine walking along and you see a nice lady and BAM, you tip your hat without having to move your hands. Believe me this is something someone, somewhere gave so much consideration to, he invented the hat.

Now obviously it didn't turn out to be a rip roaring success, but nevertheless it was still invented and for that matter protected by patent. We have a whole world full of this kind of thing. Some from the minds of the genius, some from the mind of the mad man. I don't think its that important what kind of mind ideas come from, the important thing is the ideas continue, no matter how totally insane they seem to be at the time.       

No Words


Thursday, 16 September 2010

Just another drunk.

A letter from a group in Chicago was mailed to Bill W. in 1960, taking his inventory.
This was Bill’s response. Bill was 26 years sober at the time. “That you seemed disillusioned with me personally may be a new and painful experience for you but many members have had that experience with me. Most of their pain has been caused not only by my several shortcomings but by their own insistence on placing me, a drunk, trying to get along with other folks, upon a completely illusionary pedestal; a station which no fallible person could possible occupy.” “I’m sure that you will understand that I have never held myself out to anybody as either a saint or a superman. I have repeatedly and truthfully said that A.A. is full of people who have made more spiritual progress than I ever, or can make. That in some areas of living I have made some decided gains but in others I seem to have stood still. And in still other ways I may have gone backwards. I am sorry that you are disillusioned with me but I am happy that even I have found a life here.” Bill Wilson 1960

I've often wondered what it must have been like for old bill. A whole fellowship looking to him for guidance when all he wanted to be was an AA member, just another drunk. I guess it had to be someone and I've got to say, I'm glad it was him.
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Sunday, 12 September 2010

Used to be so dam cool

I found myself smiling madly at myself this morning as a little cluster of lads on step through scooters screamed by on what I'm sure they would refer to as, bikes.

These things my still go by the name bike, but compared to the things we had as happy go lucky teenagers, they all seem a bit on the shite side. It would seem the days of the AP50 that could pull 60 on the flat are long gone. It's a shame because the used to be so dam cool.

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Friday, 10 September 2010

Good ideas

I bet this seemed like a good idea at the time.

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Sometimes it just seems like a long week, but no matter how long they feel, my experience thus far tells me they always come to an end with the joy of Friday.

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Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Gifts are important

Sometimes its easy to forget the importance of gifts for the people you love.

I've been giving this a bit of thought of late and realised I haven't bought anything for Mrs D in ages. With that in mind, and armed with the knowledge she is a lover of shoes, I've come up with one of my better ideas.

I'm sure she is gona love them, who wouldn't?    

Monday, 6 September 2010

The story of me life

Although no quite so much nowadays.

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Heroes and transmogrification

I've been giving a bit of thought to modern day heroes, the people both real and fictional that my little boy Jack is going to growing up with. Of course doing this I can't help comparing them to the heroes of my long past youth, and to be quite honest, the heroes I had as a child were a bit on the crap side. A case in point would be The Man From Atlantis.

The series stared Patrick Duffy (of Dallas fame) as an amnesiac called Mark Harris, believed to be the only surviving citizen of the lost civilization of Atlantis. He possessed exceptional abilities, including the ability to breathe underwater and withstand extreme depth pressures, with superhuman strength. With his webbed hands and feet he would solve crimes on a weekly basis. The problem was that unless the crime happened to be water related, he was screwed.

It seemed my childhood was littered with crap heroes of that sort of ilk. Chopper Squad, The Gemini Man, and of course that bastard Quincy M.E. But at the time things were so very different. An invisible man with a digital watch or a medical examiner solving suspicious deaths, the result was the same, they were the kiddies. But only as reserves, the second place nearly made it folk. Although now a bunch of tossers, the seventies did have a few real heroes.

Steve Austin was a man barely alive, but they could rebuild him, and rebuild him the did. Apparently it cost six million dollars but Christ could he run. I was a big fan at the time and I suspect I still am deep down. This was the sort of chap who would kick the shit out of  Quincy M.E. then race home to shag his wife Farrah Fawcett of Charlies Angles fame.

One of my most treasured toys as a child happened to be my six million dollar man action figure (it's not a doll). He had a big button in the middle of his back and an engine he would lift if it was franticly pushed. He also had roll up skin and a hole in the back of his head that made everything look much further away. It was a great toy, but not my favourite.

Without a shadow of a doubt the greatest toy of my childhood, and in my opinion one of the greatest toys ever made was the Evel Knievel stunt cycle. This thing was indestructible, no matter what you fired it off, and I tried as only a ten year old can.
So as Jack grows up in the age of play-stations and super power transmogrification, I hark back to the golden age of my youth when you could build a supper hero for six million dollars and fire Evel Knievel into a sold brick wall from two foot knowing it would survive.    

Useless things I know

A female ferret will die if it goes into heat and cannot find a mate.
Chewing gum while peeling onions will keep you from crying.
During the chariot scene in "Ben Hur," a small red car can be seen
in the distance (and Heston's wearing a watch).

On average, 12 newborns will be given to the wrong parents daily!
(That explains a few mysteries....)
Sherlock Holmes NEVER said, "Elementary, my dear Watson."
Because metal was scarce, the Oscars given out during World War II were made of wood.
The number of possible ways of playing the first four moves per
side in a game of chess is 318,979,564,000.

There are no words in the dictionary that rhyme with orange,
purple and silver.

Astronauts are not allowed to eat beans before they go into space
because passing wind in a spacesuit damages them.
The very first bomb dropped by the Allies on Berlin in World War II killed the only elephant in the Berlin Zoo.

If one places a tiny amount of liquor on a scorpion, it will
instantly go mad and sting itself to death.

Bruce Lee was so fast that they actually had to s-l-o-w film down
so you could see his moves. That's the opposite of the norm.

The first CD pressed in the US was Bruce Springsteen's "Born in
the USA."

The original name for butterfly was flutterby.
The phrase "rule of thumb" is derived from an old English law which
stated that you couldn't beat your wife with anything wider than your thumb.

The first product Motorola started to develop was a record player
for auto mobiles. At that time, the most known player on the market was Victrola, so they called themselves Motorola.

Roses may be red, but violets are indeed violet.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Do the next thing right.

What an easy little one liner that is, but what if I don't know what the right thing to do is? The problem with me is I can spend hours trying to figure out the right thing. I can spin it, turn it inside out and analyse it to such a point, I forget what I was trying to do in the fist place.

Somewhere along the way I miss the whole point DO THE NEXT THING RIGHT, no matter what it is. It makes no difference, I can be at work, at home, at play or relaxing. As long as I do what I'm doing and do it right, the rest seems to pan out without too many problems.

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A handy prescription.

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Be nice.

When I survey my drinking days, I recall many people whom my life touched casually, but whose days I troubled through my anger and sarcasm. These people are untraceable, and direct amends to them are not possible. The only amends I can make to those untraceable individuals, the only "changes for the better" I can offer, are indirect amends made to other people, whose paths briefly cross mine. Courtesy and kindness, regularly practiced, help me to live in emotional balance, at peace with myself.

Above is taken form Daily Reflections. Sometimes it can be so dam hard to be nice to everyone I bump into, sometimes it can even feel impossible. The truth is that often they don't deserve anyone being nice to them. But I try, occasionally I fall short, occasionally I get it right. The point is I keep trying to be nice, even when the other person don't deserve it.

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Saturday, 4 September 2010

They come along

It seems form time to time things come along that no matter what we do, it all goes tits up. I used to think this was a bad thing, for sure it's a pain in the arse, but I'm no longer sure it's always a bad thing. I used to think people who quoted the old "you'll grow in times of hardship" thing were knobheads, I'm not so sure anymore.

Much more my thinking ends up along the good enough is the best I can do at any point line. Even when the best I can do is piss poor compared to some people, it's still the best I can do. When the banana skins of life throw themselves in front of me I keep trying to do my best. It's all I have left to do.

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If I remember i'll tell you.

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And what?

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Just a though for the alky

"We must be careful never to show intolerance or hatred of drinking as an institution. Experience shows that such an attitude is not helpful to anyone. We are not fanatics or intolerant of people who can drink normally. Prospects are relieved when they find we are not witch burners.

Temperate drinking is okay, but we alcoholics can't get away with it. And no alcoholic likes to be told about alcohol by anyone who hates it. We shall be of little use if our attitude is one of bitterness or hostility.

Above is taken form the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. Turns out a bunch of drunks got together many years ago and found a solution to the age old problem of alcoholism. It's the same solution that has helped me stay sober for nearly eight years. If you have a problem with alcohol, you might, just might want to give it a look.

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