Saturday, December 31, 2005

Three more for 2005

Who wants to be a millionaire? You'll need at least a million to buy any of these large cottages in Hampstead Garden Suburb.

Hampstead Way

Wild Hatch

Temple Fortune Lane


One thing I sometimes worry about when writing here is how much readers question my sanity. As a neurotic rather than a psychotic I'm well aware of when things start getting out of hand, and though not everyone realises there even is a difference, I'll state that it means I'll never lose touch with reality as if I was going to become psychotic as well that would have happened long ago.
So whatever it looks like, my neuroses are made up of abnormal reactions to normal situations. That means in my case stresses seem thousands of times larger to me than most people, and often the effects last far longer than they do for most people as well. The tablets I took were great until my system decided it didn't like them and forced me to stop them when I tried again after a couple of years off them altogether.

As certain people do question my sanity at times I thought as it was a quiet day with only food shopping to do for my friends who are coming for new year's eve, I may as well explain the lot here so it was never under speculation again. There are numerous names for my trouble, but anxiety is the best general banner with various aspects that come and go within it. It's not as rare as I thought as at least some people I know online have used the support of fellow forum members to talk about theirs where in real life hardly anyone mentions it except to their doctors. But apart from having a paralysing effect on the sufferer, unlike schizophrenia and the like does not change their personality or sense of reality. But so many people assume it does. We don't become violent, incoherent, paranoid or any other psychotic symptoms as we're not psychotic. It's like comparing pneumonia with lung cancer, both affect the lungs but that's it. Both illnesses affect the mind, but are not the same things. I'll be only too happy to find people reading this who already know this, but it's got to be said in as many places as possible to mop up one by one those who will actively avoid anyone that's 'not normal' as if every mental aberration is the same.

Of course environment affects neuroses, as if there's no stimulus there's no response. If I lived in a small town in a remote part of the country at least half my stresses wouldn't be possible. The West End of London would be as distant as Manchester or Glasgow, and the local shops would be in walking distance with most things available in one area. As everyone was in a small area you'd know many of them, and have the support of a community I don't have anywhere in London. Though I always lived in the suburbs, the pull of the more crowded areas is always there, and eventually they become intolerable. As the population grows previously quiet areas become busy, and it's also become extremely difficult to park near any shops in the whole county. Public transport here is usually how you'd imagine it in hell, but less frequent. I did go on a bus recently as my car was out of commission, and the new buses have half as many seats downstairs, cramming everyone into a space like a guards van in the third class carriage of an Indian train. The Routemasters the EU outlawed for not being wheelchair friendly only had seats downstairs, and you only had standing at peak times and not many at that.

I proved all this both by spending weeks every year in Devon, and living in Oxford for a year. The trouble was if you aren't married or a local it's too late to join in in a small town community if you didn't go to school there. But work is a different world. I worked 17 miles away and it took me 20 minutes on the motorway. Here I suspect the reason I never had a full time job since 1985 (though I did in Oxford with no trouble) was because the only criterion I had was not to work in Central London again. Most jobs are still there now and I basically cut myself out of the market. Having jobs where people live isn't de rigeur in London and just because most people are able to travel 10 miles or so every day on trains that give you a preview of the afterlife every time you go down the escalator (as there is nothing to see out of the windows, being half a mile below the surface) doesn't mean it's right or I have to do it any more. So though some of us start off more sensitive than others the environments vary so much that London is the worst possible place in the country to live for those who are. Add to that the fact I've lived alone (besides the odd tenants) since 1992 it means any stress I have can't be shared, and rather than talk to someone most of the time at home, I have things in my head that stay there till someone happens to arrive I can talk to. That's why I like doing this, it's an alternative to having people around but being public it opens me to all the judgements people with no problems are tempted to make.

I didn't make myself this way, I can't stop it when it happens, I have no strategies, solutions or expectations it'll change, though it does sooner or later on its own. As 2005 had the most non-exam-related stress of my life, people have seen my posts become darker and darker, but if rescue awaits, though I may have no awareness of it now, it can change. Tommy Boyd is one person able to see through the surface layers to the truth beneath. If he reads this he'd not only understand and explain my situation correctly, he may even be able to think of a few solutions (though my own belief they don't exist doesn't help my outlook either).

Reading other people online tells me I'm not the only one in this or any other situation, and for every person who comes out like an alcoholic, thousands are probably pretending they're fine and keeping shtum. If some of you think it's being self indulgent, remember. I've got no one to talk to now, no tablets, and sod all else to do. If I was paying for this privilege with a therapist I'd have just blown about £40, this was free, and if anyone like Tommy picks it up with advice (non cannabis related!) I'm not even just talking to myself with no response. I genuinely believe there are no answers, as I've tested people for years. I have my technique of observation, but that seems to be a water on stone situation, where it works so imperceptibly over possibly more than a lifetime though it may move mountains, the timescale isn't a practical one.
But remember, however black this sounds, if I hadn't written it here it would all be inside me, at least I can let some of it out here so let it go. That alone is helpful though it can't change the situation.

Links added!

After 18 months, I've finally managed to link other blogs to my front page! Typically they appeared on the wrong side, jamming up the existing index, but they are there and they work, so I won't fiddle around again unless given word by word directions to shift them. I got a huge error message when I just added two extra ones so don't really like to go in and poke around as it is so easy to come back with less than you started with.

Judgement and criticism

Sometimes comments can be pretty useful. Like the time my tutor said 'I don't know if you're degree material', and with almost two years to go did all I could to (successfully) prove her wrong, and was even told by another tutor after I got my final results (and so diplomatically at that) 'you surprised us, we didn't expect you to do so well!'. I may have unintentionally veered into the Colombo school of operation, where you appear to be a total cretin to outwit people who expect very little of you. The trouble was I used that for so long afterwards as I saw quite a bit of potential in it the image took over the reality and I had to drop the false image before it ruined me.

So, again a similar comment urged me into action, disapproving of my lifestyle, and I thought something has to be clarified in general for people who go around disapproving of other peoples' lifestyles. OK, if people are hurting their own health or others that's not a lifestyle criticism, but one of safety. If not, it's really none of anyone else's business. The type of people who like to look in from the outside and feel superior for working when you don't or the like are not doing any good to anyone with their unnecessary observations and conclusions. I see other sides to that type of attitude, including one of jealousy as most mediocre but hard working people hate to see others that don't fit into their rigid systems. The basic fact is that apart from working hard, most of these sorts can't do much else. They never look at the complicated circumstances that put people in these situations, or the fact they may well be temporary, but just think anyone who doesn't toe the line shouldn't be accepted by society. Firstly you have apparently got away with beating the system (don't dare to look into the often dreadful circumstances that put anyone into that position though...), and secondly if you can actually do far more than they can they just don't like it as you're not only not working, but can do things they can't!

Mike Mendoza led an almost Hitlerite circus on the unemployed on the radio the other night. It began when a woman rang in and dared to say she wouldn't take a job outside her chosen area. Oh my god. The floodgates opened and one by one, following Mike's tirade that she ought to be shot or at least deported (my take on it, not his actual words...) callers rang in to reinforce Mike's caring and sharing opinion with crap like 'wasn't that woman evil' etc., each gaining the avuncular headmaster's approval with cooing praise, especially when in turn each one said how hard they worked, to which, in typical Orwellian mind control style (if these cretins had a mind to control) he replied 'well done, well done', as if they'd just learnt to crap in the potty for the first time. I almost felt like committing suicide by the end of it. If the old sod hadn't been serious I'd have thought it was a highly satirical crack at people with double digit IQs who had absolutely nothing they could offer, as Marx said, besides their labour, and hated anyone with the talent or imagination to pick and choose what they did with theirs. They had all been indoctrinated with the conventional view and could never think outside the box even with the help of 500 volts.

But these people will never produce anything that is remembered or left to society, not one song, poem, original idea, piece of literature or art or anything of beauty. Like the racists who listen to reggae music these types often spend their money to enjoy the fruits of their minds and hearts, but if they don't fit in society wouldn't want to mix with the people themselves who create it. Of course I'd prefer to be able to be creative and work hard(er) but if I had to take one, I'd take the creative, as I'll always have the potential to do more, but they are all working at their full potential driving their lorries and whatever else these callers do who jump on the bandwagon of witch burning every time a hippy or dropout dares to call the radio. When they see what others produce beyond their own abilities they rarely if at all think of how that person lived while they were creating it. But god forbid they come across your 'lifestyle' first before they see what you can do that's all they focus on. So if they see that despite being holed up in a home office half the day, this dropout turns out stuff with little or no effort they couldn't learn in twenty years of classes, they don't like it Captain Mainwaring...

Thursday, December 29, 2005


Unlike yesterday I was in all day till the evening, but did have enough really shit jobs that not only had to be done but were done, so at least I have something to show for it. One observation with both a negative and positive side was I thought if I'd had a partner the identical day should have been so much better as I could have either shared the work or at least had someone to speak to when I was emptying saucepans from the rotting kitchen cupboards into a cardboard box, defrosting a block of ice in the fridge the size of two Hovis loaves (which will take about 10 hours to melt at least) and then mop up the resulting floor deluge (as I did yesterday). The cat kept popping up between myself and whatever I was trying to do but it's really not the same. The positive side is at least I think life could be better, though whether it'll ever happen is another story. A visit to the Thai bride website may be the only way now- I said (quite accurately) if I wasn't married by 40 I'd drop my standards drastically, and the result was the women also raised theirs. So now I think if I'm not married by 50 it's maybe that or sod all apparently. I know people who have and they seemed to have been pretty settled so who knows...

For the first time in nearly 2 years the computer froze since last night to not long ago, like it did about monthly on Windows 98. The differemce was on Windows 98 I nearly always found why and sorted it. On XP it just says 'processor use 100%' when you're running bugger all, and whatever you shut down (besides my firewall last night) nothing happens. Today everything was haywire even though all my scans came up negative, and now it's OK just by turning it off and on again. I hope it's going to behave now as though apart from this I had nothing left to do on the computer I will sooner or later ie tomorrow evening.

Then when I went to grandma's she had an interesting job for me, her hoover bag was full. But not the sort you replace, she has the posh sort that you empty. Now you'd think Hoover (for it was one) would have a zip or hatch like a kangaroo pouch to do it, but you pull the bag out and it comes out from the same little hole it went in. You don't hold it up and shake it, you have to put two fingers in and pull strings of it out, surrounded by clouds of dust. Not as bad as harvesting my mum's compost but up there.
The email situation has improved, like my letters all my replies came in a little bunch (though my email has seriously jammed thanks to NTLs marvellous security that doesn't let viruses in but fucks up your programs for you). Liz Jones from the Mail on Sunday sent me a lovely reply, but the bad news is she's just stopped her weekly column about her marriage. Maybe a vacancy looms?! I also heard from the Toyah Willcox fansite that they want to use my story about her coming to my house for an audition there. It was amazing to read her story about meeting Joel Bogen, who became her guitarist, in his bedroom behind our house. The internet draws together so many past experiences in one place which would have been lost otherwise. Now Jenny Eclair appears to be away, so maybe when she returns I'll get one from there as well. I have heard nothing from the Jewish paper I sent my pieces on Jewish humour, as Jackie Mason says, it was probably too Jewish. Oy gevalt...

Business and pleasure.

Today's one of those times there's nothing different to say, but I log in anyway. I've been busy, I got two out of my last three photo trips done today which are now loaded, and flickr is full till January so I've got four new pictures there and about ten more to add when they let me again. Now my ram card is also full I either have to buy a new one until I get the ones printed I want, or buy a DVD burner and get them all transferred, which is preferable. Two are also with a relative hoping to be printed on A4, finger crossed it works.

Otherwise I did also see a house with about 30 flattened boxes outside near where my car was parked, and I knocked and asked if she wanted them and she said no. So I now have the last few boxes I need which will take everything from the remaining kitchen cupboards. That was a lucky break, and if only more things worked as smoothly I'd have a very different life now. One concept I'd been toying with recently was karma. I accidentally managed to avoid all the areas that used to give me stress, mainly a job and exams. The exams thank god are over eventually, though potentially I'd be happier with either/or a masters degree/professional chartered qualification like social work. But at 45 I will have to exploit what I have as the master's option is too tough as I dropped off one already, and the professional qualification would probably finish me off nowadays. Technically I ought to have enough already, but once you start on this track until you get a PhD there's always 'one more' should you rise to the bait and have the large sums of money you now also require.

So the karma bit is the evil side of a higher power, the devil. I will explain. Making lessons difficult is not god's work. A parent wants their child to learn but at the lowest costs possible. They'd rather they learnt to ride their bikes without getting hurt, pass exams without resitting, and get partners without being dumped on too much. But unless I'm in a bad weather zone, every task seems not to happen without a sudden or continuous exertion of effort. Punishment is for the lazy, so anyone who wants a reward without effort is put in the naughty corner where every project goes wrong as you don't deserve it. As I said, karma, cause and effect. So despite never choosing not to have a job, my naive wish for success without a regular routine appears to break the rules of karma, and impose a feeling of guilt that of course I've brough failure on myself as I'll never get a thing out of life if I put nothing in. This of course is one polar and truly satanic view, much employed by religions worldwide and grandparents.

The new age view is nothing needs to be an effort. The effort-result connection is pure illusion, and if we drop it things will happen as they can easily with no need to justify a reward with an earlier episode of suffering. In fact, the old satanic argument you can't see the light without the dark is usually interpreted to mean just the opposite of this. In fact, if it is true at all and not more of the same illusion, the actual meaning is once you are aware of the darkness once, you needn't ever experience it again to distinguish the light. Once you know shit stinks, you basically don't need to be reminded by having it around the whole time. Nice description, but it's a memorable one. So the compromise situation is up to me. I have to realise the effort-result equation is false before it will be. Complex but possibly the actual scenario. Just like you can't not think about an elephant, or let go of letting go, you can't do any of this yourself. It requires a combination of grace and others to shift you from outside. You can't choose to directly shift your perception or there would be a world of masters and no students. I have read enough books and been to enough lectures to know the theories, but my only practical teaching is to be aware of where I am and what I'm feeling, and the karma will gradually die. There are more complicated methods but there lies the path to madness and I don't need any more help on that.

So my current status is hoping to gain the rewards others get from 'working' (whichever way you read it), without actually doing so. People do, such as the British aristocracy who inherit enough to stop starvation in Mali if it was shared equally, but earn millions a year from rental on family properties and the like. They never feel guilty as they know nothing else, also making a nonsense of the satanic view of reward. I was from the middle class study, qualify and work your arse off to buy a nice house and average but new car. I did the first bit and then it all went wobbly as described in an earlier post. But every now and then when the devil creeps in I think 'no wonder I've got so little, I don't deserve it as I'm not working'. Long held beliefs you know in your heart are wrong still seem right in your head when you look at friends with everything you don't have, possibly just 'because they have a job'. I'm beyond looking now for various health and related reasons, but am able to either work from home (little chance of that) or do the odd media piece and earn so much it pays for the gaps, which is possible but relies on both talent possibly beyond my own, and a hell of a lot of luck someone picks up the tiny worm I have in a sea the size of the Atlantic.

That's the path I've been forced onto, and whether I feel guilty or not can't change my direction, but will make me feel a lot better when I stop believing it's my own fault. Tough call.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Three more

Temple Fortune

Sunnyhill Park

Graveyard in Hendon

Withdrawal from society...

As I was up bloody late last night/morning I got up too late to take any photos again, though at least my time was spent on trivia research, which would have been done today otherwise so was used productively. Though the snow thankfully melted almost immediately once it stopped it was too late for me. I have a useless fact page on my website that specialises in geographical oddities in Britain, like duplicated roads and place names. After a trivia question I had to spend over an hour looking for a pre 1965 map of Middlesex as that was when it was abolished officially. I discovered three breaches where the Thames didn't maintain a boundary between Surrey and Middlesex or Buckinghamshire, which is odd to say the least. I also found exactly what goes inside most of the little green cabinets on roadsides used by the public utilities. Basically they log pressures and temperatures and some have modems connected that send the data back to the companies. For some reason these things have always fascinated me.

So while indoors I had a whole heap of stuff to do, and rotated jobs every half hour or so so I wouldn't get too bored, but by the end of the day the isolation had finally got to me, and I felt like I was in prison, as though I was allowed out there was nothing to do there either. It's hardly surprising after weeks working indoors this would happen, I really need some kind of social or financial distraction or the marbles will get loose again. Oi! I didn't say they already were! So I could have emptied all the kitchen cupboards already but I ran out of boxes, the painting is a really tough bugger but as long as I can cover over my mistakes should get there in the end. I just hope I don't become a recluse as I do at least half my shopping around midnight. It's good nowadays it is actually possible, but though shopping during the day in Kingsbury or Hendon has lost all its charms, I'll soon be getting a prison pallor, at least till the clocks go forwards again. I'm still visiting family members most evenings, so do get a change of scenery, but at present the bare minimum. But I won't go anywhere now for the hell of it, and though it may be testing my sanity now when I am at home it is very satisfying to look back and see all the things I've done at the end of a busy day. And if I don't do it nobody will, and the house will end up like the garden already has, wild and uninhabitable.

Tomorrow has no plans during the day, and as it's still holiday week I have very little on till the week after. I expect and assume tomorrow will be a continuation of today, but the many jobs are less than half done and do take hours (or more, for the painting). So it's good in a way I'm forced to get them done with no alternatives as if the kitchen fitter came next week with everything still in the cupboards he'd only charge me more to do it. All I can say is if only there were woman auctions like car auctions. Wouldn't life be easier! (feminists, I'm joking!*)

*Joking means something incongruous or sarcastic most people find funny. I have to say this here as feminists don't actually have a sense of humour, let alone understand the concept.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Not only, but also...

What a TV week- first Woody Allen, then Spike Milligan, and now a whole evening of Dud and Pete (Moore and Cook that is). Pity three quarters are now dead, but they formed my comedy history along with Monty Python and Peter Sellers, and reminded me of similar conversations myself. Scene, a predominantly Jewish public day-school, year 1972.

Not only David but also Julian...

What shall we talk about today Julian?
Shall we talk about bottoms?
That's a good idea- I have a new name for one, do you want to know what it is?
Go on...
It's called a Julian hole. Very appropriate I think.
Well, I can think of better ones.
Go on then.
Cuthbert? Wilbur? (I start cracking up at this point), Marmaduke?
(almost having an apoplexy) Marmaduke!!! Oswald!
(Voice from the distance) Will you two shut the hell up?
Oops, excuse us... Gerald!
On another subject, what do you think of your mother's tits?
That's a bit rude, wouldn't it be better to ask what we thought of the other's mother's tits?
Yours aren't very big.
I prefer your sisters.
She hasn't got any...
Well if she did I'd prefer them.
What about her arse?
I've never seen her arse. Do you think she'll let me see it next time I see her?
You'll be lucky.
You're right, she hasn't even stayed in the same room as me since I first met her.
She is shy... Anyway, I don't want to talk about my sister like that.
You started it.
Well I'm stopping it now. What about people in our class?
What, their tits?
Ha ha very funny, it's all boys. No, what do you think of them: I'll do it like on the news. OK Mr (Insert name here), what do you think of Andrew?
He's a lunatic.
Oh well, nothing new there then. One of many.
You're right there Julian, anyone else?
Oh, he's a genius, everyone knows that.
Yes, boring, just a genius... yawn... Gabriel?
Oh my god, he's probably even worse than Andrew. What about Nick?
Are you suggesting he's not very intelligent?
Well, could be...
I can't say I'd disagree with that, what about the teachers? Mr W?
Oh hello boys, fancy a poke up the arse?
Ooh, get your backs to the wall!
Are we suggesting he may just possibly be a little bit of a poofter?
Well, that possibility was considered and has the leading score.
What about Mr D
Oh, you mean Ivor D?
I haven't, how about you?
What about me?
Well, if Ivor D have you a D as well?
I never said you had a D, I said Ivor D!
So you've got a D but I haven't?
I think this could go on a long time, shall we change the subject?
I know, what's the best excuse anyone's made not to see you?
Oh, you mean 'the boilerman's coming'- Levin!
Hello, my names Leviiiiiine... hahahaha
That's an old one Julian.
It's funnier than you though.
Well you didn't make it up, Simon did.
So, it's still funnier than you.
I said Julian hole. That's funnier.
No it isn't.
I think it is. Julian hole Julian hole!
Shutup will you.
So am I funny?
Oh for god's sake shut up...
That's not the answer I was looking for, try again.
Oh very funny.
Thank you, that was the one I was.

and so it went on, for years.... Well, we were only twelve. He's a multi millionaire now though, but is he funny?

The dream continues

As I write about a phenomenon that began by only applying to myself, more and more others appear to show my theory that with creativity comes increased sensitivity is the case, which would be god’s little joke. He makes a small sector of humanity perform at a level beyond the others and then saddles many with a reaction to outside events that lasts indefinitely beyond them and at a level many times above the usual. Whether a higher quality or quantity of creation you can’t disagree with me, that’s what society created paper qualifications for, as well as impressive performances and creations in the world that can’t be denied. The recent interviews with Woody Allen have produced more or less what I expected, despite last week’s denial that despite only being able to play a neurotic intellectual he was neither, an article in today’s paper says he is both claustrophobic, agoraphobic and obsessed with his health. Snap! One more for the tiny club. I’ve said before that though it seems a price I have to pay, the lack of my creative abilities would be a greater loss than becoming normal and mediocre, despite the greater pleasure and contentment good health would bring. It seems a no-win situation, and the increased sensitivity that drives much creativity is apparently bound to break its banks and spill into phobia territory. I do have remedies for mine but at the moment the side effects I have mean having to look for a new one, currently facing life with no armour, which clearly shows.

But adding to Woody Allen, bloggers and other internet friends I come across show very similar patterns, and in my case it’s strange that this year (as it still just is) my health gradually forced me more and more into my house where I produced more in a year than I ever have since leaving college. Money is not an element as they generate none, at least not so far. But having a physical collection of six pictures, loads of photos, an episode of a TV programme and articles ready for publication, and of course (whatever people think of it) my now daily productions here. It may be fun to run around socialising, shopping and seeing events, but despite my phobias I’ve done all this to the exhaustion, except for the friends part which I always want to do. I had always added up countries visited, football matches, parties, lectures and concerts seen etc., and last year I reached the point when I found I did things more to add them to the list than I actually enjoyed doing them. Then my health packed up for a while and all those things were off. Thank goodness by my relatively advanced time of life, I worked out I would just do what I was able to, and sod the rest as it really wasn’t in my control. Looking back I can’t complain on that front, though being made to do it without the pressure of health problems would have been a million per cent preferable. But we don’t pick and choose, things just happen like a cowpat from the sky when you couldn’t even see any cows to get your umbrella first.

So 2006 is the start of a new list. TV appearances, published work and paintings sold. I’ve done the regular stuff almost everyone in the western world does, and it never really impressed me to hear all the countries or other places people had been to. When I was younger I wanted to go to an event and if I could, went. It was never an effort, I just got on the train and did it. As there was little or no effort involved I just did it and didn't see it as a big deal. Mental health books tell me we all start off fine, phobias and other twists kick in with maturity, when we see the things we used to enjoy can not only go wrong, but hellishly. So you get put off, and eventually stop many of them. And if you also get panic attacks you can’t go or else, just in case you get one.

The similarities I’m also finding in a few other bloggers is as if there’s a common creator out there. The way a certain sector of people looks at the others seeing the faults, injustices and unnecessary situations everyone else just lives through is uncanny. Yesterday I also saw age is not a factor, as Woody Allen pointed out as well, he said he’d never become wise or more tolerant with age, it just doesn’t happen. I found the same thing at a lot earlier time. I become less tolerant with each event, as I collect new irritations and annoyances which all get added to the existing pile, until life becomes more of a minefield needing the skill of a ninja warrior to dodge the muck and bullets as you see them flying at you with a second or two’s notice. Well, it works both ways, age neither creates nor denies wisdom. The latest blogger I just came across like this was only fourteen and still had the quality of writing and depth of understanding that apparently is either there or not. A few people do develop later in life, but in most cases it seems you either have it or not, whatever ‘it’ is. I expect he'll probably read this, and see a fellow writer who has almost spotted a missing relative when you look at some of the common factors I've seen already.

But the common creator here, along with every other coincidence we witness, could follow Nick Roach and every other advaita-type teacher, as being me. I’ve given the alternative theory of creation many times before but it’s the best one that fits with my similar people and situations scenario that is gradually becoming more and more the case as time goes on. If it’s all my dream, then of course people will be as I’ve created them, as I’m the only real person here and everyone else is a character in my script so fit my own formats. But like true dreams these are written with no awareness of having done so. Of course there have to be safeguards written into it, such as the alarm clock (Nick Roach in my case) and the dream has to appear real or we won’t take any of it seriously. Fine as far as it goes, it’s just as nightmares are just as valid as nice dreams, and like our definite dreams, they just happen as they choose, even when we sometimes realise it’s only a dream the context rarely changes. Enlightenment means waking up to this as a dream as well, though the majority of witnesses (not exactly including Nick though he is free to clarify) say it’s a far superior state. It suits me as the closestn thing to an escape, and drugs are not. But it would also be a good way of explaining many things that currently can’t be understood. Science is only correct until it changes, and all the fixed rules we believe are certain, such as the solidity of walls or continuity of time, only last until something happens outside them, like a real dream which has no scientific rules. Once a rule is broken, it’s always possible to be, but if we realised it’s only happening as it’s a dream it would take all the fun out of it. But the trouble is it means we have to take all the shit as well as once we realise it’s a dream the shit should no longer hold any fear, but the fun may not hold any pleasure. This is a complicated catch 22 situation, and though my heart tells me waking up is what I prefer, I have little say in any of it either way.
I have no answers either, but hope I have a way in presenting the situation that will allow others to also understand it, and hopefully come up with original ideas I haven’t been able to.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Spike Milligan

I just saw the TV programme about Spike Milligan, which fitted in very nicely to my material on genius and mental illness, and showed Jews don’t (as pointed out with Dudley Moore) have the monopoly on either. His brand was the manic, literally, which meant he was able to produce at a frantic rate until the depression came in. He said something I also realised, if the creativity door’s open, make the most of it while you can, and he did all his life. Of course for all I know his mother secretly had an affair with her refugee gynaecologist from Eastern Europe, Dr Herman Wasserstein, but we’ll never know.

Back to the present, I just called Tommy Boyd about my blog dilemma, to reveal or not to reveal. He seemed to sense a deep psychological need in me sharing my life and ideas with potentially the world, and asked me what my reasons were I wanted people to read what I wrote. I said mainly to entertain and teach, but he seemed to think it was more of a cry for help. Of course I sometimes put little messages in my writing which one in a million of the people I aim them at may read them, but basically I write to be read just as I don’t talk to myself if I can help it. I will see if any hidden motive pops up, but loneliness is only a factor behind a creative urge that has been there as long as I can remember whether I was lonely or not.
Allison, the co-presenter, explained why women don’t like to be admired as the man may become a stalker. A dreadful but accurate view of the standard female opinion of any man without a woman. Like loan companies, they only like lending to people with money. Put me with a woman and they’ll all come dragging after me just because I appear desirable. It does happen.

After being on Funtrivia for a while, I started dreaming I met members, and some time later did so, but different ones. Well after talking to Tommy last night, I dreamed I had a call with a fellow blogger (call me here to find out if it was you) about my blogging situation, and unlike most dreams was a very sensible conversation. I wonder if he does sound as he did in it?

Well, it’s still just Christmas day, and this was one of the quietest for years. I went to my grandma for dinner with my Dad, and did bugger all the rest of the day. Good enough for me. And the TV (thanks to digital and the fact that though it was all repeats they were ones I missed the first time) was a lot better than the last few years. Again, I won’t plan ahead too much for the next week, I intend to carry on with the same projects as before, but also have to get the lot out of my kitchen cupboards for the new ones that are going in soon after new year’s. More photos are planned, but I have to get up in time to catch them before it gets dark. In a couple of weeks I’ll be ringing the TV company to hopefully finally discover the date for transmission but I won’t hold my breath. Finally I hope Tommy will be reading this, and if so I’d love to know, though you can in private of course (and do you write in your forum I wonder?).

Saturday, December 24, 2005


has happened since yesterday, but as I'm about to go out I thought I'd get in here first, as whenever I have nothing to report I always end up with something here. The only item I forgot to mention was my new neighbour/s arrived on Thursday, and all I will say is my theory was correct, maybe it was psychic, I can't be sure, but it was almost as if I got an image in my mind. I've only seen the man of the house, and my guess was a couple with a child (little room for more) so if I find anyone else I'll keep things updated. I went over just now but he was out, but was there all day yesterday when I was busy. It doesn't look as if it'll be anyone who socialises, but if I'm wrong it'll be nice.

So, as usual I have a small list of attempts on the system, none of which are expected to materialise, also as usual. But if you send the same thing to a million people and it's any good, one should use it. Currently my blog and other writing is with three people and Jenny Eclair has received an email about my performance 20 years ago, as I reported it here and she's now working on LBC so easy to contact. Women are almost another universe (besides ones from the past) and I've dropped the whole subject for now. I doubt anyone at the leisure centre's single, even the staff in their early 20s are all getting pregnant, which would have been fine if I'd had a part in it... (literally). All the ones in the gym have had partners (I make my enquiries) and as that's the main place I meet people despite a very high quality (I'd guess at least ten women have been well up to my standard in the last 3 years) they may as well be on TV for all the use it is to me. Just to lower the tone totally for Christmas/Chanukah/life I have never gone to a prostitute. Mainly as I don't believe it's necessary as long as people I know are available. But the other reason is in this strange country it's legal to work as one, but like solicitors till recently, illegal to advertise. I'm not about to throw a dart in a list of names and spend money on a literal random chance. It wouldn't be nice to turn up and then say 'I don't really fancy you so I'm going'. I know they do advertise regardless, but the few photos are unreliable and then the nice ones probably live in Newcastle or Penrith so it's not really a starter.
Where am I leading? Well, as far as I'm concerned, if I could see someone I liked who was up for it, then I'd pay. Why the hell not? Statistically the number of women I've had that I actually wanted can not only be counted on the fingers of one hand, but I didn't even go all the way with any of them. So of course I'd pay to pick a few favourites as then I could catch god knows what the next day and still die happy. I have very simple needs and that's number one. And they did make a film about it so I don't think many men would disagree, at least in principle.

As usual, I'm pushing the envelope here. A dreadful expression I know, but it fits and I know when I do it. Those people I refer to are those people I have given my URL to, and though I don't insult anyone, and definitely can't identify them (which is the important bit) if I don't write about everyone I know it'll only be half a blog, a car with no wheels. So if I have created a few red faces on my travels, I apologise, but it is a writer's role to relate true instances, and for goodness sake, if any woman on earth were to announce online, on the radio and on TV they wanted my babies I'd be up in the clouds, whoever they were! It's funny (good example of reverse sexism) how if a man says the same thing most women would curl up in embarrassment. Considering it has to take both a man and a woman to do the job, how on earth can the reactions be so polarily different? I certainly don't know, besides being an extension of the Victorian/Catholic 'Ladies don't like sex' kick. But talking about it here or anywhere else can't change deeply held attitudes, and it's only cultural as even if a few Pacific islands had women as the primary movers (and I think they do) it would prove it wasn't genetic. Besides that, if I didn't come straight out with things it would break a tradition going back my whole life of saying things out in the open. No one's tried to assasinate me yet or kicked me out of anywhere for it, except one total arsehole at college, who deliberately didn't tell me I had to be on a formal placement so he could throw me out of my course at the end of the year, as I was so outspoken in class. Luckily he retired and I got a placement and carried on, but it did spoil things for some time. Otherwise the respect I ought to get, both from the many people who don't dare to say things directly but wish they could, and those that do, as well as my self respect which is the most important, would be lost just for not wanting to rock the boat a bit.

Underneath we're all the same (even men and women), so saying you want to have kids with someone, live with them, or any other observation good or bad is what we all think as long as we're awake, and then continues in our dreams. It's just only a minority voice those wishes as they seem to believe if they let the person find out the truth it'll make the sky fall in. Well, as I said, I've been doing it, originally involuntarily, but then under discretion, and I'm still here. I've lost no friends, jobs or any other benefits, and hope on the plus side I've shown it's both possible to talk straight and actually preferable. If women were to write about me I'd be amazed they were even interested enough to mention me. Sometimes Indie Queen does (thanks Indie) as we spend a lot of time online together, though due to a few thousand miles have never met. I don't think anyone else has though, though to be fair no one I know in person even has a website, let alone a blog. One does have a photo album now he's travelling, but that's the only one I can think of. But again, if we write about people then it's not sensible or accurate to leave bits out, unless libellous of course. So if I send my words in a circle by telling people about this and then writing about them it's natural, as they're the very people I know to write about, and as I said, had my first official request for inclusion last week. But then to have to select bits to mention or not would be the artistic equivalent of holding ones breath. I really want to say the things I do about people. And to say I want kids with anyone is a pretty high compliment, don't you think? How many women do any of us know (assuming we're single) we'd want kids with? Not many, I'm sure. So shift your perception ladies, stop the red faces and angry knee-jerk reactions when I or any other man says they like you (anonymously), a lot. One day when you're alone and no longer in the flush of youth you'll be desperate for even the toothless old bloke at the centre to want you and remember how many men you turned down when things were going the other way. Respect and acknowledge every compliment now as they don't carry on for ever, and the man you may turn down today could be married with kids of his own when you suddenly need him. I should know, I did exactly the same when I was in my 20s, and have one or more possible long-term partners that never happened purely as I didn't know the value of what was right in front of me before it was too late.

Celebrity meetings

OK, here goes, all the celebrities I remember speaking to, and how I met them. Enjoy, or not.

Clement Freud - at book fair when I was about 8
Topol, Leslie Crowther- clients of my neighbour
Liberace- met in antique market
Roy Hudd- signing books
Lynsey De Paul in a gym I was working in. Gorgeous!
Harry Hill- filming opposite my grandma's house
Anne Charleston (Australian actress)- in theatre cafe
Dave Bassett (football manager)- came to crowd at match
Ron Moody- friend of family
Jim Dale- took son to our school
David Threlfall(actor) Met in an after-show party at the theatre, along with the cast (except Dinsdale Landen) and writer. This (along with my similar meeting with Anton Rodgers) shows the power of writing to actors, as you can get invited to see them, as I did twice.
Russ Abbott (comedian)- met in car park
Anton Rogers (actor)- met after TV programme filming
Uri Geller- at his show
Lionel Blair- gave us a music lesson in 'Oliver!' (amateur production)
Toyah Wilcox-Came to my house for a band audition, I got it but decided not to join as it wasn't my sort of music and I had my A levels to do. Needless to say this was before she was famous.
Valerie Singleton and Christopher Trace- visit to Blue Peter
Jim Henson, Stan Flashman- when I used to make deliveries in a van
Bill Oddie- in a shop
Mike Osman (comedian)- at Capital Radio roadshow
Jason, Becki, Dan and Kitten from UK Big Brother 5- outside studio
John Hollins (footballer)- at Chelsea FC
Arthur Mullard- on bench by Hampstead Heath
John Williams, B.B. King, Lonnie Donegan, Tom Conti- through family music business
George Layton, Sue Cook, David Bedford, Julia Somerville- served in shop

Friday, December 23, 2005


Name dropping, as you've probably noticed by now, I love it. Really I want to be the name other people drop, but unless that happens, I'll have to have fame by association. And not much of that. I have no celebrity friends, so what seems to have happened, because Will Self is the only person on TV besides Toby Young I knew when I was at school, I see him all the time and since the first time when I said 'I went round to his house and now he's on TV' have realised had he never been on TV he would have been a very vague and insignificant character in my past, so I promise from now on I won't go on about him any more as had he not been a very minor celebrity would have been virtually forgotten by now.
Mind you, win some, lose some, it made me think (spurred on by bloggers like Ben Graham ) -brace yourselves- I could make a list of every celebrity I've spoken to (as we can all see them in the street or the theatre but not speak to them) and how I did it. Thank god there are enough other anoraks and obsessionals out there to make it worth repeating though maybe 90%+ of my readers will scroll on...

Anyway, having dropped the name dropping, I made my third call to the radio in as many days, while listening the other day I sent a photo I'd just taken of my desk area for a forum thread of similar views to the presenter Iain Lee. I called to see if he'd actually looked at it (and others I've sent) and he pointed out how messy it was. I said you're right, I often have to do my work on my lap, which he took completely the wrong way. In a flash I realised there was a little area available by the computer I could clear a space, and actually was able to write on my desk for the first time on almost 6 years since getting it. Funny how I'd never realised it was possible till he mentioned it. I've also got a final flurry of Christmas and e-Christmas cards, some from people I'd long thought had vanished, which I though was pretty amazing. It shows (after talking about the types of my numerous phone calls yesterday) sometimes apparently lost causes of the minor and sometimes even major types can be recovered. Sadly none were of the female type, but at least means a few more old friends are thinking about me. Celebrity wise I have a number I've passed my written work along to, but though I'll be unlikely to get a reply over the holidays something tells me not one is going to anyway. Prove me wrong Jenny Eclair...

Anyone listen to The Archers? (come on, you can listen on the internet now and it is a national institution). Here is
the location. Anyway, my search for aliens has come a step closer, as the new character Amy, the vicar's daughter sounds like a smurf, but more high pitched and nasal. As smurfs don't exist, she definitely doesn't sound human, so maybe we have the first little bit of evidence placed in a prominent place we may not be alone. Mind you, putting someone on the radio who sounds like Joe Pasquale on helium with a Northern accent can only be as a figure of fun, as no serious producer would genuinely employ someone sounding so bizzare on any programme worldwide, unless subtlely slipped in, with no awareness by the poor actress, as a conversation piece. The only comparitive voice I've ever heard (and one all my two American readers will be familiar with) is the great Kathryn Janeway, captain of Star Trek Voyager. She has more than a hint of Woody Woodpecker in her tone, but her enormous talent has managed to work despite this affliction, unlike the totally bizarre squeaking this woman produces.

One rare piece (currently) of good news today was I drove up a main road about a mile long where they'd just removed all the restrictions, mainly at least 7 mini roundabouts. This is the first and probably only council in Britain to remove road restrictions, but sadly my own just compensated by putting humps on the only road into my estate from the north a couple of weeks earlier. I'd wait till one of these councillor's (I was going to use another c word but this is a nice blog) wive's was about to give birth, and put her in the back of an ambulance at 60 mph and drive over all those fucking humps! (I didn't say how nice it was here...). After she'd had a suitably dangerous experience, she may quietly suggest to her husband who put them there they may not quite be such a good idea as he thought. In Africa (from what I've seen on TV) countries either don't have roads at all or pretty good ones, as when they are built they are built properly. Ours were tracks 1000 years ago that just got tarmaced over and besides the few decent roads that tend to fizzle out into single lanes half way along, I've never been to a country with worse. Then to pepper them with humps and narrowings when you couldn't do much more than 20 mph over many anyway is just sadism. If my neighbouring Barnet council become followed by any other council maybe the tide can turn. Remember, green fans, public transport has to drive over humps as well. They're just wrong!


Technically this belongs tomorrow, as my own visits are counted as well (you'd think they could program this out, but it's only 2005...)-but though it still includes them, I've just reached 1000 hits!!!

I started the counter just about 20 days ago, so that averages exactly 50 hits a day! Thanks guys, and it is appreciated.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Blowing in the wind (part two)

By 9.30 discipline had taken over, as well as sheer boredom, and I did my little trip to the shops, though only the supermarket was left open by then. Inspired by yesterday's blogger, in the approximate 15 minute combined walk there and back I saw:

A shrine to a murdered man who was only 27, and had been shot several times in the little road opposite the shops. This is the second murder since I moved back, and the other one was only off the end of the same road. The first was a knife gang and now it seems sadly London's suburbs are becoming like New York used to be when it was safe here.

I also saw a van from Romania, far rarer than our massive influx of Polish and Lithuanian workers who not only drive here but the Polish cars are virtually all less than 5 years old (as the number plates changed in 2001).

I had more phone calls today than for years, well over 10 and mostly incoming, which also slowed down all the other jobs drastically (except the ones I made which were jobs!). I left the mobile by the toilet after lunch by mistake, and 7 hours later found 3 missed calls on that as well, though a couple got me on the home line later on. Sadly among all those calls, as per bloody usual, none were the 'oh wow, she likes me' sort of calls, ie the ones where I either leave messages and they don't call me back, or I give my number to and they never call. The number of total let downs and disappointments on that front has also been far higher than usual this year, and in fact a total clean sweep. From the paranormal enthusiast who was friends then cut me dead to someone who rang when she needed me and then did the same, one who needed a place to stay and dropped me when I couldn't provide it, and any more I may have overlooked who did the same sort of thing. And the beautiful blonde who couldn't even bother to call after her original wild enthusiasm on the dating site.
Then I called Clive Bull on LBC as it was his last show before the new year, and told him about all my website improvements. So if anyone's reading this having heard my call, please leave a message! The last time I read my webcam link out on LBC I had a few hundred viewers in an hour. That was impressive. I've just had a look and I think about 200 must have looked at my main site, though weirdly this blog hasn't had one new hit since 8pm. Unless I forgot the count on the other one and I actually had 3, which is very possible as I hadn't planned to call and checked it in advance officially.

So, I have done far more of my official business later in the day (as I usually do)- I've added in most of the tiny people and cars in my painting, and looking at all the tricky areas I actually seem to have covered them all, at least roughly, so may be near the end at last. I won't have much time for all this tomorrow so have made the most of a free day, even though until I went to the shop at 9.30 I hadn't spoken to a single human being directly. The phone's OK, but it's only really a narrow spectrum of being with a person face to face. I think I have been driven to do far more from both my isolation and recent health problems, as at least I was determined to do as much as I could and tried a bit harder as a result. Though I've not done one of my usual things I add up this year- football matches, new girlfriends and trips away etc., they (besides the woman situation...) had all become pretty passe- after 45 years of travelling, going to events and the like I have had quite enough and when you do something just to add it to a list rather than you enjoy doing it it's time to shift. So this year the paintings, writing and TV work have been way more important than seeing a few more obscure football teams and a couple of retired England players. Been there, done that, moved up a level.

So really despite the apparent desert of usual happenings, I've been taken on a completely parallel route this year, and had the stress element been removed would have been a pretty good year minus the dire women situation. I sometimes feel a spell has been cast to make me appear disgusting as soon as I find a woman attractive, as in the story of an Indian prince, who was being saved for higher things. Well without a woman this prince is totally bloody useless, so if the higher powers are listening 'Oi you, No!!! Stop bloody interfering!'. They have been told.

Blowing in the wind (part one)

Today was totally free, and as usual I had a list of options, depending on other conditions, which may get done. It just showed everyone (as I already knew), most of what we do is decided by outside influences more than us. Even apparent arrangements and jobs we have are arranged with other people, so rely on them to tell us what we'll do. And my photos don't depend on my choice, they are up to the light, the weather, when I wake up etc. So that's set the scene, today had a list of preferences but as usual didn't follow the reality.

I began in front of the TV, and once the cat arrived on my lap made some phone calls (one of my essential tasks) as it meant she could stay there. Then as I got the food I needed last night the trip to the local shops was postponed and I decided to see how much I could do indoors, starting with my picture which hadn't been touched for over a week. But Lucy had decided to sleep on it (which I cover up knowing she does that) as it was by a radiator, and rather than disturb her came back to (though I intended not to for hours) the computer and posted a couple more photos in various places. Then back to the phone, and wrote this at the same time (typical multitasking) which I am posting now. And it's part one as it's just gone 8pm and I still have some time to see how many more jobs actually get done, if any, which will be contained in part two. I did also read another blog which listed the interesting things they'd seen that day as there was nothing else to write about, showing writers of all types have to find the interest beneath the obvious. I haven't left the house (well, it is December and the day after the shortest day) so saw nothing new as it's all the same old views indoors! More to come later. Bye!

Please work!

I've just replaced all my webcam links with the proper one Yahoo made, and fingers crossed they all seem to be working. Apparently by writing the HTML code myself, though the link looked perfect and reached the right page, it didn't work when it was found.
By using the Yahoo link on both my main sites I got both running perfectly so clearly there are layers of HTML operation that affect more than simply creating a link from A to B in a convenient icon. I'm sure a programmer can explain what happened, but at least having learnt the hard way seem to have fixed the glitch that was previously driving me and at least one potential viewer mad.

If I can raise this new link to the top of my template I'd be even happier, but it's not realistic to want jam on it as well...

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Care in the community

I'll just say my kitchen arrived today at 8.20am, but only took 10 minutes to drop off and I went back to sleep as if nothing had happened. It's now waiting in the spare room for a couple of weeks before the fitter arrives thanks to the bloody Christmas holidays I have little time for nowadays...

Meanwhile the next stage in the story of my Jewish suburban roots in Hampstead Garden Suburb. After financial ruin (OK, a divorce, similar outcome) only my mum was left able to stay in the area I lived for 28 years. At the time I didn't feel I lived in a community, mainly as we rarely saw the same people outdoors twice and when we did no one spoke to each other. But the care in the community here is in its positive sense, as looking back from the huge number of families who remained in the hood (centred on one road it would be safer not to mention so will refer to as the hood instead) our connections remain many years after a lot of the next generation has left. So tonight I went to my mum's and a very nice couple from the very road I refer to were there, and by coincidence I had my printout of the last two posts here for my mum. They were very entertained by them, and for the first time actually requested to appear in it, so here they are!
Anyway, it turned out a number of people I mentioned here were their neighbours, and though a few weren't known, some were, and the celebrity glue that held them all together was none other than Will Self. Now Will and Toby Young are part of the current backbone of British Oxbridge (well, two Cambridge in their case) journalism, and worked together on Toby's Modern Review back in the days after they graduated in Islington. Twenty plus years later I'm hoping to follow them purely on merit (Toby actually studied journalism, and Will English), and I went to North London Polytechnic not Cambridge. I have sent my Jewish collection of memories to a Jewish publication (few actually exist, and the Jewish Chronicle wouldn't touch anything funny with a barge pole), as it's a bit of a niche market and a good place to start. Of course I'd prefer the Daily Mail but we have to start anywhere they'll have us.

So the longer I write about my past and recycle it amongst the hood, more and more people discover I've written either about them or someone they knew, including the aforementioned Will Self, a minor hero of mine as he has basically put two fingers up at society and been rewarded by it for doing so. We all went to the same schools, beginning with the local primary school and then a selection of either local state schools or the main public school I met Will, and suffered for three years before getting an honourable discharge. So we all remember the same teachers, eccentrics and stories, and am now catching up with the solicitors, journalists, Dan Gaster (the comedian), accountants and academics the nutty Jewish kids became thirty years later. I missed half the boat, as though I am reasonably well qualified I dropped out by 38, having drifted further and further away from my own plans to be conventional, as fate had long before decided regardless of what my compatriate nutcases did I would not follow. Of course they're all married with kids and members of the local shul, and I sit alone in a home office in Kingsbury for hours writing about them while they work hard, earn a fucking fortune (while I'm on benefits) and go home to their wives and kids. This I can't control, and one thing I am content with is I doubt they can write anything interesting (except Will, as it's his job) to save their lives. They used to be incredibly entertaining but are probably now upstanding pillars of their local community, on the school board, sending their kids to the schools we all went to, and have lost their edge as well.

I hope that is the only thing I've kept. The sanity (well, the neurotic part) went years ago, the family soon after, and there wasn't that much left to lose after that. But my eccentricity has never gone, it hasn't increased as it was always apparently at the max from day one when I used to chase every female in my nursery school. I was the one who stood up in lessons to make jokes, and end up standing outside. I didn't care, if it was boring I had to liven it up. And I've been like that ever since. At least now you can't get kicked out of the class or sent to detention for it, it can be done properly and not in the middle of something else. And gradually getting back (albeit as a visitor) into the community that spat me out for economic reasons 12 years ago has started being put together and is reforming in my blog as well. And now it's formed a circle as it's being distributed among the hood, and with the comment facility (hint hint) the readers can record their visits. Out of all the names the only one I haven't been able to contact was Will Self, though I haven't given up. There's an 80% chance he won't remember me as I haven't seen him since I was 12, but I know many people from both schools after primary remember me for being the school lunatic. But how many sane ones will have been forgotten? So, my next ambition is to get some of this published in a paper somehow, and then asked for more. Then the journalists I knew would read it and who knows, include me back into their circles just as I was in the early 70s. And the cherry on the cake would be if I got so much dosh in the end I could then return to my roots (secondary, as I now live where I did first) and tread the old patch and maybe even send my future kids to my own primary school.

So thanks to the internet I've had the chance both to write, find ideas, and reform an old community that fed my inspiration since my arrival in the hood (well, in my case just off it) in 1965. What and where it will lead to I don't know, but what I do know is somehow, partly through my own nostalgia, old names and events are being revived and may soon meet in person. That'll be nice for the next step.

Breaking my rules...

I just heard my kitchen delivery's about 9am tomorrow, so rather than being in bed I'm still driven to do this first. As I can't have sex before I go to sleep (preferred activity) I have to have something I can bloody well rely on!

I've reached page 55 in Newport's book (see previous comments) and have to say we must have been part of a communal mind. How many people apart from myself and Newport constantly lobby for the outsiders of the world (as I certainly am- half his descriptions applied to me), and agree that the majority pretend we're not here, not worth touching, or at worst would like to get rid of us. And if we weren't here, how boring would their lives become? As I keep banging on, most of history's geniuses had mental or social problems, but the current generation usually are only aware of their great works, except for Van Gogh who's mental illness took precedence over anything else in many people's minds. The run of the mill and mediocre will keep the social machinery going, so items get delivered, power stations run, shelves get stacked and institutions get staffed, but many of these could be done literally by machines sooner or later, just as many jobs which are now automated took thousands of people in the past. And working a 40 plus hour week? In the 21st century? What a pile of crap! There isn't the need! Now as a long term drop out, even I could hack three days a week, and there'd be no unemployment in Britain if this was enforced as job sharing is a simple alternative and as well as prices dropping initially, many people would create from their hearts in their newly found spare time, just as I do, and probably earn more in their time off than their work. But who the fuck ever listens to common sense when the powers that be insist we need to work longer and longer hours to: pay for the rising population who are also living longer, save fuel costs, compete with the Chinese, and every other cockamamy slice of bullshit no one with a triple digit IQ ought to swallow. The moronic lorry drivers who incessantly call the radio bleating the government want to stop them working 80 plus hour weeks should be fucking shot. They are such brainwashed cretins they poison the water for everyone else by trying to turn the clock back to the industrial revolution, while the intelligent and quiet minority are trying to move the world kicking and screaming forwards.

I suspect Newport has tapped a vein in me that was already open but now fully functioning, and wonder if three people or more (ie Newport, myself and another) were to agree that conformity is not the way to go, a slow but certain movement of opinion would build up against both the bastards who try and maintain oppression and conformity and the idiots who follow it and do their advertising for them thinking they're trying to save their livings. I don't know, but the freedom of speech afforded me here allows me at least to say it, and though I agree with the book that I certainly didn't choose to live on the wrong side of the rules and shouldn't be judged for it, but realise the people who condemn me for it could well want me and everyone like me dead. Anyway, I know and have said many times out of work doesn't mean out of life. Being productive only means earning money for what you do when you get it. If you do exactly the same thing for nothing, as I do, what's the difference? In fact, while you lot out there are writing, painting pictures, playing the piano, fixing up houses and the like for money I'm doing it and not even getting paid! So it could be said I, like all the women looking after their children at home, am working just like you but for free! Even childminders (as I used to be a few evenings a week for years) earn a little money if it's someone else's children, showing childcare is work. So do tasks lose their value when not receiving payment? Of course not! I think I've made my case pretty well.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Engines are online captain

Just to say my webcam is OK now, having clicked the 'fix' option on messenger. The site was still down but I went in to edit it, previewed the page having done nothing, finished editing and it's working again. But for how long... (it never crashed before in almost 2 years though!).

Comedy reflecting reality

Following my TV reflecting reality theme, in my first decade on this planet I was influenced by a selection of some of judaism's greatest natural comedians. None was a professional, in fact the majority were solicitors, but they instilled in me a foundation of my filthy and childish humour I was stuck with ever since. I just hope to goodness I finally have a child of my own I can pass this tradition on to.

I've already introduced Malcolm, who as well as his toilet remark, used to make nose picking jokes to which my mum would say things like "Malcolm, don't encourage him, he's bad enough already". Then Monty, a very quiet and subtle comedy personality, more like a British Woody Allen with a beard, who never actually said anything funny, but was funny just by being himself. My greatest influence of all though was Willy, who lived nearby and was around most of my life while he was still alive. He was the Jewish version of Frankie Howerd. Whatever story he'd tell you (which is more or less all he ever did) it would be in the same style but peppered with the language and direct sexual references Frankie (who I was lucky enough to also see perform once) always left out of his act. He was the one who made up the term 'budgie poopoo' for the ubiquitous deposits our two budgies left all over the lounge, and was the first person my parents knew to say the f word in front of me, when he was telling a story and said "the fucking pelmet", though I never knew the context of the story, which cracked me up at about the age of 8. I tried to get another one out of him for years afterwards but my parents had clearly given him orders to the contrary. He had neighbours where the mother was a psychiatrist but the whole family were more like her patients, and he would always get started when I mentioned the R-----'s. "That bloody woman" he'd start off, and then go on about the lunacy they'd committed in the last few months since my last enquiry. It was like filling a room with David Baddiel, Woody Allen, Lenny Bruce, Philip Roth and Jerry Seinfeld and getting them all drunk. It reflected a unique thread of personality that even heavily pervaded the concentration camps, where despite the conditions inmates put on classical concerts and produced art with the minimal resources they had, and often escaped death by entertaining the guards. Sex, toilets and mental illness seem to be the dominant themes, as well as personal conflict and disasters. But all made incredibly funny. Some of them could probably make cancer funny (as the not-so-Jewish pair Peter Cook and Duduley Moore did) as its not the subject matter that creates humour but the presentation, though also the darker the subject the greater the potential for humour.

In fact, Peter Cook may have been a stereotyped English eccentric but Dudley Moore always appeared to have been an unmarked Jew, like the policeman who drinks with criminals as a friend to gain information undercover, somehow took on the background of a Dagenham council estate, but may have been the abandoned child of Freud and Ethel Merman, had they ever met or probably been alive in the same decade... While I think of it, one Jewish parent is always enough to turn out identical personalities, while Alexei Sayle and Peter Sellers were sired by the right half (mother's side), Ben Elton curiously enough made me think, as Jackie Mason would say, at times he was almost 'too Jewish', only to find out his mother was an Irish catholic called Kathleen. But somehow his father's German professorial genes seemed not just to win, but assert themselves defiantly as 'you may be a yok but we're going to make sure you appear the total opposite!'.

Prior to entering these observations in the Radio Times or MIT journal of psychology, I've put them online here, but should a genuine publication ever decide to take them/realise the talent in front of them, it would only have been possible from all my work here first.

Tuesday (just)

An hour into Tuesday, so I couldn't say Monday though I wanted to... Apparently you can't change the font face or background colour here so you'll have to rely on the content!

It's usually the smaller things in life that make an impression, to continue the theme. Good and annoying things. Today I got a replacement CD for a tape I had that snapped. The cheeky buggers said of course they would have replaced it but they didn't do it any more, but I could buy the CD if I wanted to. As it was almost impossible to find I happily said yes, and it's totally bloody different! OK, it's a double (I paid more than double the cassette price, so not really such a good deal) but the part with the name of the tape is half different tracks. Bloody fools. So the first entry sees me for not the millionth time turning into Victor Meldrew (to my American readers- now you know how I feel when you lot mention total unkowns here like Jessica Simpson or Hilary Duff- 99% of Brits know Victor, even though he's not a real person!). Anyway, that moan over, again I posted here with nothing else to report, but experience tells me those are often the best times to write, and also pushes the creative abilities if ever needed professionally and need to write with little or no inspiration.
I have also just (literally) seen a film online from my past, about 35 years ago. I am trying to get my favourite trade test transmission film when they were checking colour TV transmissions from 1968-9, the Shell film 'The magic of plastic', which featured coloured plastic chips and melting rainbows of psychedelic colour, and pipes being unreeled and carried which were literally miles long. I found the whole list (not including my one amazingly!) and remembered the other two I liked the most, 'Paint' (the companion of plastic) and the science exhibition by Philips in Eindhoven, Evoluon. I hadn't seen it since it was shown in the early 70's, and for a few years I had to go to my grandparents to see them as we didn't have a colour TV. Anyway, the good news is they had the film on the site, and if I had a CD burner was invited to make a copy as well! I love 60s and 70s TV, partly because the atmosphere then generally was totally different, and partly as I spent half my spare time watching it so became something of an authority. Via the web I've dug up so many favourites (mainly sound but a few video clips), namely the introductory music to ITV every morning, called Salute to Thames and Moto perpetuum (or something similar), and something I gave a whole page to, my favourite story from look and read, Joe and the sheep rustlers, which they'd just shown again for the first time on CBBC since about 25 years ago but I missed it. I have seen a few others since as they are running most of them again. I have the themes for Simon and the land of chalk drawings, and each time I remember another old and obscure favourite like Handful of songs, (where I fell in love with the singer, Maria Morgan, when I was about 10!) someone's made a page for it, often with the theme tune thrown in. If only life in the 2000s was like it was in the 70s...

Interestingly, I was thinking about careers today, as I spent years and years qualifying in various fields, but half the work I do (unpaid with a potential for paid) is from totally unqualified abilities. My therapy work is the official part, and I suspect that editors prefer graduates in anything to write pieces just because they assume we can produce a minimum level of grammar and intelligence. They may be right, I haven't really checked... The therapy gives me a hook into a niche market (bugger all in the job market, so there has to be some alternative use for it), but besides that the art and music are purely based on results. I was pretty impressed when I took my last two paintings to the gallery (I may have told this story before, but there's no search facility here...) the potter there asked if I'd been to art school, well I think she actually thought I had! We had (though I don't remember her) been in the same sculpture class, (though there may have been extra shifts?) and she'd gone straight into the business where I got kicked out of the class as soon as the second year began as the day I was supposed to register I'd been up in town taking an exam. So my A level art came to a sudden end and resurfaced in practice with no accompanying qualifications, but luckily it makes no difference in the marketplace. I reckon acting isn't really such a big deal either. I went to classes once or twice a week for about 4 years and learnt fuck all, literally. My speech, movement and any other abilities were the same after every type of class going, and I can basically either perform in a part or not, regardless of training. It just happens or doesn't. Back then (as you really still do in practice) you couldn't go for an audition unless you were in the union, which was a year or two's job minimum and I was a full time student with extra tuition required, so no stand-ups while I was studying like a friend of mine who did both, and qualified as a dentist and actor together, earning the same in a day acting as he did in a week as a dentist. So he worked as a dentist weekends and made the real money doing TV ads. They pay every time they're shown, and the same I earned in two days at the time.

Back to my story, I'll always hope to entertain on TV, as I said before, the cabaret work is not glamorous, performing to a handful of staff and no customers, or a restaurant full of estate agents who'd rather entertain themselves (literally I think) than have me there is really not a lot of fun. I will do a party if requested for friends, as my routine is pretty established for them and requires the minimum of speech as I mainly stick to a multitrack one man band, and restrain from singing or telling jokes which requires a lot of preparation in advance. But it's not TV. The screen, be it TV or films is for me the ultimate, and though qualifications may be a way in, it's connections plus the smallest amount of talent (sad but true) that get you in. I have no worries on the talent side or I couldn't have done all the work I have and been paid for it, and the one connection I had made simply through my interest in the supernatural was the way in for me. Once in, the door is created, rather than opened. That's the magic, the tape is there indefinitely, and especially on Sky, usually gets recycled time and time again unlike TV which tend to repeat things once or twice if they think they'll be popular. Until I know it's all systems go I won't quite be 100% certain I'll even be in it, but the trouble they went to on subsequent scenes based on mine would imply they'll be using them. Now if it helped me pull that woman I have my eye on (I can't say where, she may find out!) I'll get two birds with one stone!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

The good news

Coming towards the end of the year, though it has been possibly the most stressful of my life, I’ve used this entry to relate all the good things that happened this year.
I have also, on balance, probably created more as well than in any previous year. I have six pictures, four of which have been accepted by a gallery, and await a bite from a customer. I have written more articles than usual, two waiting to be published in a new magazine which will (if ever happens) bring my writing to a wider audience. The new digital camera has produced some amazing results, a few which will be blown up and put on the wall. The TV filming was the best thing that could ever happen besides sex and enlightenment, and one with the possibility to open up every aspect of my career and possibly as a result my social life.
I met Nick Roach properly for the first time, as well as being thanked in public for all my help during his session.
I saw my friends who went abroad for the first time in over three years, and have started to meet a few new ones though far from regulars yet. I also met (twice already!) one of my favourite comedians of all time, Harry Hill, and he is also an incredibly nice guy, inviting me to the film set and spending time talking when he could have been working.
My grandma’s treatment for the kidney tumour finally seems to be over and a success, and she’s more or less back to her usual self at 95. After waiting to find someone to fit a new kitchen for over two years I’ve finally found someone who’s booked to do it next month. And of course finding I’m now getting an average of over 60 hits a day here.

That was the productive side of 2005, and the second part is the possibilities that may lie ahead, though I have been instructed, quite rightly, to not get attached to them as they’re both unformed and out of my control. But as it’s almost Christmas I’ll list them as seeds of good news, and see next year how many, if any, flower.

If and when the TV programme is shown, anything and everything could result. More TV work, more therapy clients, articles commissioned, and even meeting new people as a result. Being a therapist is one of the few areas you can’t socialise, so despite meeting some of the most interesting people I’ve come across would not be recommended to see them once our work had finished. That’s another reason I so rarely meet new people as most people do at work. Even in the shop I met a number of weirdos, crooks, dropouts and the like, plus people I could play tennis with, have healing from and a few women who wouldn’t go out with me, though at least I was allowed to try. Working in a shop does mean most customers tend to see you as an inferior so not as a potential friend or partner. We did have our share of celebrity customers, though I wasn’t always aware till after they’d gone. George Layton was a regular we did get to know very well, and a really nice guy. David Bedford was as well, and was clearly very busy in sport since his professional days. Julia Somerville spent half an afternoon with us after getting locked in her car, and we all chatted over tea. Sue Cook was an occasional visitor, with her family, who we then saw away on the holiday programme. And my personal favourite was Samantha Janus, who didn’t say anything but at least spent some time walking around the shop so I could look at her with my mouth wide open. I resisted the urge to ask for an autograph though.
So I used whichever doors were open this year, and learnt as a result that while any creative door’s open, use it as long as you can. You can never produce too much, and however easy it seems at the time, should never take it for granted. If you’re producing easily, keep going as long as you can. You can then look back and see everything you’ve got, and be pleased with what you made.

Session one.

Well, I did find a computer after all!

OK, I’m not actually going to have formal therapy sessions here, but it looked good…
This is about stages in life. I don’t know if other people pass through similar ones, these are just mine, but the process would seem to make sense generally so may well do. Life was an adventure to start with. I wanted to see everything and go everywhere, and as far as one can, did. Being near London I blitzed the theatres, went to the cinema all the time, and tried to get abroad in as many ways as possible. My parents paid for everything so there was really no restriction on anything except the foreign trips. Then some of the holidays started to go wrong. I soon realised what started as fun had the potential to turn into a major situation, and each foreign trip could then end in a desperate rush to return to civilisation. For some reason Israel seemed the most prone to this, but I could then see the potential wherever I was where you had to fly and they speak a foreign language.
Then, after four years at college being in an audience started to lose its appeal. The last year’s crowded and hot summer lectures merged with any other audience until I couldn’t really see the difference between them. I started to want to get out of these places and spent very little time in any since.

Running ahead twenty years I now value people more than anything else. I’ve really used up the rest, from window shopping to going out for tea nearly every day for ten years. My house had long since become crammed with every possible item you can buy, and have clothes, shoes and books to last for the rest of my life. But being in the house alone surrounded by toys and objects means nothing. It’s just like a child’s playpen where there’s plenty to do but are normally alone and trapped. I’d never get one of those if I have kids, they always made me think of prison even when about 4 or 5 when my friends’ brothers or sisters had them. What counts for me are the little things that happen with someone else around the house. The way whatever happens is witnessed by someone else and can comment on it, and even get help if something needs clearing up or moving. Being able to share what I do on the computer with someone, and talk while I do housework makes ordinary or tedious events into something interesting, and I believe if this ever happens I’ll always appreciate it.
So I have moved through certain stages in life, and used them up, and am left with the people rather than the places or things. And coming to a house where everything is mine, nobody else’s books to explore, or others’ papers or notes around means it’s a constant reminder it’s only me, and will be like that every day ad infinitum (OK, technically ad mortuum, but who’s a Latin scholar?).

But I do wonder if other people run out of things that interested them once, and gradually move on to more and more simpler things that make them happy as I do. I’ve done both, and whereas the busy activities become worn out, the everyday ordinary interactions between two or more people who know each other well enough should never do so. You reach the stage when you are just comfortable being in the same room or house, without a need to talk unless there’s something to talk about. This to me is more than enough, with no need or interest for constant or even occasional extra entertainment. I haven’t given up other areas of life though, I am aiming for a new stage I have almost no experience of, and one which I’ve always wanted to do. That of becoming a media personality. At least there’s no age limit of arriving on the scene, and I have enough potential time ahead not to fizzle out and die as soon as I make a mark. And unlike going to watch other celebrities, which we can nearly all do every day if we feel that way inclined, no one can ever choose to become a celebrity, it just happens if you push enough and are very lucky as well. So I would never dream of hoping in public for something I had no chance of getting, as I’ve already started this career this year, but none of the products have been released yet. But this is what I hope will replace my old role of witness with one of participant, the one on stage instead of in front of it. I have had a number of piano/organ related performances, with a bit of comedy often thrown in, but they are hard work and always both solo and tend to last a few hours. I did once (I completely overlooked this till now as it was unplanned) appear on the same bill as Jenny Éclair! Though I’ve been doing this since I was 12, every other performance was planned and normally for parties. This however I was in the audience, and Jenny and my friend’s cousin Simon were the main acts, along with Earl Okin, the musician. My friend’s sister was running it which is why I was there. At the interval I asked if they wanted me to play the piano, which I did, and then my friend came in and told me Earl Okin hadn’t turned up. I was already playing the piano (it was in a bar with a small stage in the middle) and said well if Simon lends me his keyboard I can sing a couple of rude songs (as Jenny Éclair’s act focused mainly on feminine hygiene I felt it was appropriate). He said go for it, at least we won’t have half a programme missing, so I proceeded to sing and play Ivor Bigun’s songs I’m a wanker, I’ve farted, and My brother’s got piles. It actually went down pretty well except for said friend’s mother who was so embarrassed she didn’t speak to me for six months. I presume Jenny had left already but I would be interested if she heard me!

So that was technically so far my finest vocal moment, equalled last year by appearing in the Big Brother final night shaking Jason’s hand. Everyone at the community centre recognised me and crowded round when I next walked in ‘You were on TV!’. The power of the media…But of course both such accidents (the big brother incident was a complete fluke as they decided to follow the housemates outside as they met the fans) will pale into insignificance if and when my proper appearance on TV (Sky anyhow) finally happens next year. If it leads to more, the new stage will be well under way, and one I’d dreamed about almost as long as I remember. In fact I dreamt about being in the BB house with Jon Tickle in 2003, and a few weeks later decided to drive up there on finals night to see if any of them would be milling around, and they were all in a party facing the main road with a huge patio door to watch them through. And yes, I did see JT and all the others, except I didn’t speak to them. But after getting knocked back for an eviction night the year after that I called their bluff a few weeks later by meeting four housemates and getting on telly without the ignominy of being herded into the enclosure with about 1000 people for a few hours with apparently no toilet facilities, and would probably have been left with the equivalent of shell shock. Instead I saw far more housemates into the bargain as you only see one on eviction night, and are very unlikely to meet them or get on TV unless you’re right at the front. But five seconds and silent is not to be my first and only media appearance. I want it to happen properly now, and will have to be patient and wait and see what happens in 2006. Meanwhile I’m still at stage zero, ie sod all!

Saturday, December 17, 2005


I've just finished the business I had to do, and there's a short time left before I have to go to the gym, so I thought I'd open up the page and see what came out here, mainly as I won't be near the computer for the next day or so.

I'll start by mentioning my major inspiration, Liz Jones, who writes about her marriage in The Mail on Sunday 'You' magazine (among others I haven't read).Assuming it's not fiction, she reveals some of the most intimate details of a marriage I could only say ought to be impossible, in that her husband treats her like a doormat and doesn't even appear to have a sex drive. But as well as being fascinating, it's shown me you can give personal details and still be published in a serious place. So I just (as she gives it) sent her an email telling her all this, and I hope she replies. The last person I did this with was Melanie Phillips, my journalistic hero, and she did send a nice reply, and may even be one of the readers. I hope more Liz actually comes here and likes it as our styles (rather than standards- I wouldn't presume!) are so similar.

Otherwise I am looking and hoping for some more inspiration. The last being digital photography has proved a great success, and I am hoping the local chemist will be able to blow up a few to go on the wall as they do with my normal pictures. I haven't had anything printed yet so don't know if I'll have to give up my ram card for a few days (panic panic). As I say when there's nothing on TV, Maharaji wants me to meditate, and now if there's little else to do, someone is allowing me to study my course. I must do a lot of that in the next week or two for obvious reasons. I also rang George about the rainbow post the other day, so if you're reading, hello!

As I said in the comments earlier, my Yahoo webcam has died on me yesterday. It's weird that as soon as I linked it to here first the site crashed, and then the whole program did. It's either my security or their crap program, and I suspect it'll need a new download of messenger to fix it. Once a program's had it you can only replace it with a new one, I'm not sure what shit gets into them but my spyware has eaten photo express fatally, and taken bits out of something else that will never be the same, neither of which I have on a backup. It's typical when your spyware does more damage than the bastards it's meant to protect you from. Despite regular nasties found on the computer, XP at least appears almost immune from any symptoms and maybe leaving well alone could be better than spybot removing essential files with everything else. Anyway, I was sure there was another item to mention, but having not written anything down it may have gone. However, until it does I've been reminded to raise a point Newport did yesterday, that sometimes I come across as rather weighed down by life. Analysis costs thousands, blogging is free, so I'm prepared to begin a series of pieces which would sound like it was being presented in analysis, as not only is it all good stuff, it's always interesting to see behind the scenes in others' lives, the places normally only analysts see.

Plus another forum member spotted I seemed to be looking for love, and that may be the crux of it. Since goodness knows when any love there was has dwindled, and the partner type has been lacking for over 25 years. That can't be good for anyone. Women I know just go off men and sex for years and (value judgement but accurate) become usually very bitter and twisted. Men rarely go off sex from lack of use, quite the opposite in fact, it becomes an obsession. Sex and love are related as if you aren't really into a woman sex is like eating when you're not really bothered about what you eat. Otherwise it is literally a divine experience. Different person, same thing, different experience. That has gradually hardened my heart to not feeling much either way whatever else happens as without a woman to love and its return to me everything else is just waiting. It's subconscious now, it's stage two where you tend to forget what you're meant to be missing as the memories are so vague, but it usually comes back. Every woman this year had potential, and one I was definitely in love with. Of course each acted as if I was the least attractive and worst potential partner they could ever come across, and though I do get others who don't, I feel little or nothing for them.

My mother also left the family home when I was 21, and because she was such a fixture around the house that made it feel like home, it was even worse having to be there without her after such a long time when she was around. There was no warning. There for 21 years, one day gone. I lived there for another 12 years and it was never the same. Then of course the next shift to having to live alone was no fun either. I had my own place already for 5 years by then but had the luxury of weekends or weekdays back in the old place when I wanted to, so it never became a complete way of life. But after that I had no choice, and actually took the transition pretty well, having built up to it so gradually part-time. Tenants came and went, but the potential stress outweighed the small rental money and that was stopped by 1998. Having the wrong person in the house (or a relationship) is worse than none as that's been well tested by me.
So life has presented me with this situation, combined with losing two jobs and my best friend (to America that is) which I suppose must try the patience of anyone. Combine that with a long-term anxiety disorder and that gives you the sum total of why I sound put upon at times. That's just the skeleton for today, but I may well, like Liz Jones before me, provide details in the future, if it seems popular. God forbid I bore anyone!
So, Liz, if you're reading this, here's my world of non-married life, care to swap?! I wouldn't if I was you!