Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

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We’re just socially interacting, innit
Not hating nor pontificating

Insinuating perhaps even implicating
Occasionally berating

But always articulating
Without aggravating or humiliating

Just relating

Relating

Participating

Oft times facilitating

Hopefully cultivating an educating and exhilarating
Illuminating and invigorating

Opportunity to debate

To generate thoughts and create a state of mind
Never blind to the fact that we

Each one of a kind
endure this

Grind

Time after time

Walking that
Line

So cruelly defined by fate

So why wait?

Come
Before it’s too late

Let’s
Start a debate.

When you passionately argue against a system that provides access to healthcare for those who are probably most in need, you are, for me, arguing from a platform that is completely and utterly morally, ethically and inhumanely spent.

As the world scratched its collective head attempting to comprehend the fantastic spectacle that was the London 2012 opening ceremony, I took to the social network-sphere to take in the wave of pride of a nation who saw an homage to our National Health Service.

A nod, for those who are still confused, to the idea behind the NHS. To the concept that a nation would ensure free access to a healthcare system for all – based on their medical needs and not on their ability to pay.

Was this a political statement? Who can say?

Should an Olympic opening ceremony be the vehicle for such a statement if it were? No – some would say. Emphatically. Passionately.

However.

Stop for a moment.

Consider.

These games – the London bid, were based on the ideal of inspiring a generation. About igniting the imagination and desires of an entire generation. What better message could you possibly hope for the youth of today; the leaders of tomorrow; the minds that will define a nation, than one that embodies the very best of qualities humanity has to offer?

Thinking not of yourself, but of others. Taking care, not just of yourself, but also of your neighbours.

As #NHS began trending on Twitter I was surprised to see the fear, perhaps even hate, for and of the idea of social healthcare.

I was numbed by the comments of those who truly believe(d) that a healthcare system built around the idea that everyone would pay to ensure everyone had access was abhorent.

I wanted to ask those who most vehemently raged against our NHS, those who live on shores from across an ocean, why they were so against putting in place a system that extends the life expectancy of everyone, not just of the affluent.

I wanted to debate the thought that this social ideal was inherently evil, when the counter argument was one that saw no demons in a system that directly links your health to your bank balance.

If money is the route of all evil…

I don’t believe that the opening ceremony was lauding the current state of our NHS; as it is in dire need of improvement. I am not even sure it was making a political plea that we should save it.

However.

Stop for a moment.

In a time when so many countries are weighted down under the burden of an economical recession, when more and more people are struggling to keep a roof over their heads or put food on their tables – ask yourself. What exactly is it that someone could find so repugnant about a system that would ensure that you, yes you – no matter what your financial situation might be tomorrow, do not have to worry about your access to healthcare?

I ask simply because… because… money has no place determining who should continue living!

“Motorsport the way it should be…”

That is what I thought as I watched the GT39’s and GT40’s.  That is what I thought as the Lotus chased down the Tyrell – as the Cooper followed BRM.

That is what I thought as I watched the McLaren pass the Porsche and the Chevron inch past me as I walked my way through the paddock.

That is what I thought as the driver of the #08 GT39 spoke to me about the fluid leaking from his callipers and intracacies of getting oneself in and out of a car that stood no more than 39 inches off the ground.

The location was Brands Hatch in Kent.  The weather was amazing!  Whilst I was aware it was May 27th, 2012 – the exhibition on show easily transported me back through the ages; pre 1966, post 1971 – an age when motorsport was unbelievably evocative.

I stood inside the hairpin at Druids, I walked along the fencing from Paddock.  I gazed off towards Graham Hill bend and listened as the cars howled into Clearways.

In an era when sports have become further and further removed from those that make up the fanbase,  I urge any and everyone who has the opportunity – get down to your local circuit any time you have the chance to get up close and personal with the legendary machinery of a bygone era.

Motorsport the way it should be indeed…

The new year arrived with a very humbling surprise for me; I received a Liebster Award for my blog from Jennifer M. Hartsock – a writer who’s views and commentary I find to be so engaging and thought-provoking, that I felt compelled to subscribe to her blog – thus ensuring that I never miss the opportunity to enter into a rewarding debate.

In line with the guidelines for accepting the award, I am awarding a  Liebster Award to the following five blogs that I love to read:

Fydsy’s Blog – “Jan Gorski-Mescir: writes about football, art, history, politics, atheism, humanity and all those other foibles humankind is so good at getting wrong…” – A writer who stimulates thought and is guaranteed to enlighten with every post.

Elementary Circle – “C-C Lester: Is a female writer from Berkshire, England… (who) writes teenage fantasy fiction, and women’s fiction.” – I look forward to the day when I can walk into my local Waterstones or log on to Amazon and purchase her latest, wonderfully crafted, novel.

Streams of Consciousness – “Coco Rivers loves words, in all forms and all languages. Writing is a passion that has governed her life since she was 14 years old. As with all great passions, it leads and you follow. Mastering wordplay is her lifelong endeavor, a labor of love.” –  Through her blog Coco gives in to the passion of the moment, whatever that is.  I am just glad that she allows me to come along for the ride.

Doodlemum – “37, short, defensive, far too chatty for my own good, mother, artist, noisy, chocolate loving and permanently tired. (I know,  how many bloody adjectives do I need…)” – Angie illustrates and writes one of the most endearing and creative blogs I have the pleasure of subscribing to.  In years to come her work will adorn the shelves of every major book store; the kind of gift every young child will adore.

Single Malt Monkey – “So, my blog is me travelling in cyberspace and hopefully linking up with fellow men and women across the world. It’ll be about creative positive people and their/my work. I grew up in the 60’s and believed in peace and love, man. Aaarghh, sod it – I still do.” – Through Al’s eyes, experiences and creative offerings I am able to travel the world, enjoy the sights and sounds of exotic and rich cultures and gain a greater appreciation for the positive elements of life that we can so often over-look.

Liebster is a German word that means beloved or favorite. This is an award from fellow bloggers given to blogs that have less than 200 followers.

These are requirements that you need to fulfill should you accept this award:

  • Thank your Liebster Blog Award presenter on your blog.
  • Link back to the blogger who awarded you.
  • Give your top 5 picks for the award
  • Inform your top 5 by leaving a comment on their blog.
  • Post the award on your blog.

2011 in review

Posted: January 2, 2012 in Uncategorized

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 3,000 times in 2011. If it were a cable car, it would take about 50 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Posted: December 3, 2011 in Uncategorized

I rarely feel the compulsion to re-post someone else’s blog, but this one has a moral for us all.

singlemaltmonkey

On Sunday we were travelling back from spending the weekend with friends when we took a pit-stop at a service station. A few people stared at the news screen hanging from the ceiling. I, like many others, was shocked to hear of Gary Speed’s death. It was almost unthinkable. Unbelievable. Everybody loved Gary Speed regardless of which team you followed. He was respected, admired. A gentleman and thorough professional. But Suicide ?  WHAT?!

http://youtu.be/sYjBeY6-rZ4

About every couple of months I have a low day. I mooch around like some skanky teenager kicking cats and tin cans. I’m down. We all have those days. Running on “Empty” . Then the battery charges – the meter goes up – and away we go again.

Depression is different.

I know a couple, and for sake of argument because I don’t have permission to tell their story, let’s call them Sally and Dave. Sally…

View original post 323 more words

 

 

I finally finished reading ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ today and can honestly say that I think I am going soft in my old age – I say old age as though I am approaching my twilight years, when I am in fact a sprightly thirty-six years old.

The thing is, Harper Lee told her tale so convincingly; crafted her characters so well, that I found myself becoming quite emotional as I realised the story was coming to a conclusion, leaving me with a sense that I was going to miss the daily events taking place in Maycomb; in particular, those affecting the Finch household.

In a previous blog I wrote that the threat of censorship of the classic novels from our past meant book readers should seek out To Kill A Mockingbird, before it was adapted to fit into our ever increasingly politically correct world.

However, I now implore book lovers everywhere to indulge in the wonder of Harper Lee’s Pulitzer prize-winning novel, just because it is a marvellous piece of literature that each and every one of us should take the opportunity to behold.  The lessons it teaches us about tolerance, equality and human rights are much more profound, much more articulate and altogether more wholesomely genuine than you will ever find in a thousand episodes of Jeremy Kyle or Sally Jessy Raphael.

If ever you wish to see the naked truth of a subject, look at it through the eyes of a child. Harper Lee obviously knew this; as the entire account of what happened to the inhabitants of Maycomb are told to readers by the innocent, brutally honest and surprisingly perceptive Jean Louise Finch – affectionately known as Scout.

Through the four years chronicled in To Kill A Mockingbird, Scout takes a voyage of discovery that ultimately teaches her what life is about, but also allows her to teach us what life should be about. I won’t divulge any spoilers, but when Scout realises she has finally met the reclusive Boo (Arthur) Radley for the first time, her greeting “Hey Boo…” literally brought a lump to my throat and immediately made me smile.

You see, it was also at this moment in the book, the final act; when we hear the Sheriff declare his intent to protect Boo Radley’s way of life and Scout’s moment of self-reflection, that my mind wandered as I thought of the observation I hinted at in another blog ‘Square Peg, Round Planet’.

I noted that there would be no such thing as humanity if we were all the same and that being different to everyone else was in fact, alright.  It was therefore quite a surreal moment to finish this book, so soon after posting that blog, and feel that Harper, all those years ago, had penned this novel, with characters who would make such a similar observation – thus allowing me to me happen upon a literary message in a bottle; a virtual lesson left waiting for me in time.

So please, go out and pick up a copy; see what lessons Harper has in store for you – if you find no messages in its pages, fear not – the enjoyment you will get from the experience will mean you will in no way feel it was a waste of your time.