17 June 2009

The Game of Why

I am carrying my daughter on my shoulders on the way to wherever. This arrangement, known as 'the giraffe', is her current favourite mode of transport. For her, unrivalled views. For me, backache coupled with a certain fatherly pleasure.

My daughter is nearly four, an age where she is no longer three but 'nearly four', as she will respond if asked her age. On this giraffe-day I ask why she has to occupy every second of the trip with a game of some sort. This can be the game where she jerkily crouches on my shoulders at the last second to avoid low branches, while shouting 'Doh!'. There's the one where she trails her hand through hedges and cries 'Ow, that prickles!'. And then of course the all time number one. Providing me with a form of Indian head massage to transfer to my scalp whatever it is that has made her hands sticky that day.

I have made the mistake of mentioning the word 'why', a child's favourite word. This prompts a host of reciprical questions, all of which when answered will draw another 'why' response from her.

I try and put an end to this barrage, adding all the weight of my 31 years, work experience and education. I ask why she always has to know everything works - literally from the birds to the bees. I ask her why she has to know the reason it isn't wrong to swat a fly, but it is to swat a butterfly (with a 'swyflotter').

Before she has chance to answer I unleash a fresh wave of attacks in this playful battle. I ask her what it is that makes her want to explore and investigate the smallest and largest things. I go so far as to ask 'why are you a girl who seeks answers to the metaphysical connundra that have plagued mankind since time began?'.

After this onslaught she pauses. 'Do you mean why am I a girl who asks why a lot?'. It is exactly what I mean, and I am beaten again!

16 June 2009

Is it me? (No)

I haven’t blogged for a little while because I’ve had a bit of a bad run at it. I haven’t felt in the mood and instead I’ve found solace in a whisky or two and a beer or three. I have of course found some time to twitter with my newly assembled rag-tag of a family, who never fail to raise a smile. Although the reference to the little girl on BGT - ‘she was crying like she had just met Garry glitter in a shower’ was pretty near the knuckle.

I'm sure like me - you‘ve been here too. Down on your luck with the world against you. Fighting an inner turmoil to contain your soul-destroying disillusionment with life’s twists and turns. A sickening debilitating bolt that electrifies the butterflies in the stomach and heats the mind to a pressure cooker on the point of combustion. And an ensuing sleep deprivation which hoards any semblance of the bodies mandatory equilibrium requirement.

Intense I know but it hasn’t been one of my better months, a May-day ground-hog but I’m not on the Tyne Bridge just yet. Here lies the beauty of blogging. An opportunity to vent angst - and I wonder why it’s taken me so long.

You see, my real issue here lies with other people - the ones who fate has decreed I tread the same path. People with a ‘Me’ agenda , so consumed by self justification and self importance that they discard the very rudiments of civility. Why?

Is it so impossible to work for the common good and help each other when
you’ve walked along the same path many, many years. Failure to attempt it is surely bad enough, yet to deliberately embark on a destructive programme and galvanise others to do the same is something I find hard to comprehend. It is something I hope I would never subscribe to.

Surely these people can see that such strategy breeds only contempt and a severing of relations, prohibitive to everyone and everything. There seems to be so many people I don’t like at the moment, I have had to ask myself if it’s me that’s the problem? I’ve thought about that and concluded NO.

(Editor's note - this article is by Espiritoart-Andy, I have to upload them for him and used my login not his! Matt).