Archive for the 'Life in general' Category

Where I am

After almost two years in Denmark, have I learnt anything?

Difficult to say, but I’ll give it a go:

  • Cycling to work, instead of suppurating in a criminally overcrowded and festering train carriage, is infinitely preferable.
  • ‘Going out’ doesn’t necessarily mean drinking yourself into a stupor. But I still do it anyway.
  • Creativity is a key element of happiness.
  • Laughter is always the best medicine. Closely followed by Fisherman’s.
  • Love comes and goes, and life is complicated wherever you are.
  • But there is something which goes beyond love, and usually lasts longer. When you find it, don’t let it go. It’s unique to you.
  • Autumn walks with people you love and/or cherish should be savoured. Especially when followed by tea and cakes and cuddling up on sofas in candlelit rooms.
  • Trying to understand all of this, or striving too hard to reach goals that are usually artificially concocted, won’t get you anywhere.
  •  If you can be light, and still easily carry the weight of your past, and yet shed it at your leisure, you will be closer to wherever you’re headed.
  • Believe in yourself.
  • Always build snowmen, run through piles of leaves, roll down hills, and also try and climb trees.
  • Sitting outside a cafe with a blanket over your knees doesn’t mean you’re old. Or gay. But it might be a little bit twee.
  • Thinking you’ve arrived is usually a sure sign of the opposite.
  • Drinking champagne in the afternoon probably isn’t a good idea when you have access to a keyboard and a blog.

This shithole island

I have come back to England for the weekend. It’s the first time I’ve been here since February.

It’s a terrible thing to fall irrevocably out of love with your country.

There is a gnawing misery and hopeless discontent tearing through the ether here; so many people I have talked to this weekend seem consumed by material concerns.

Many are mortgaged up to their eyeballs, and those who aren’t seem weighed down by what they see as a failure on their part to not yet be owning a property.

This is all going to come crashing down.

Trust

Trust is not something I have given a lot of thought to in my life.

But recent events have forced me into some prolonged ruminations.

I think I am quite a trusting person, some might even say naive.

I tend towards the gullible, not seeing any obvious reason for people to lie, exaggerate, or deceive.

As a rule, I trust my friends and family to have my best interests at heart, I trust partners to be faithful and honest, I trust shopkeepers not to rip me off, and I trust my government to do its best for the welfare of my fellow citizens (there’s some naivete right there!).

And trust is a two-way contract. My friends no doubt expect me to look out for them, my family quite rightly expect that I will always do my best to love and care for them.

But what happens when trust breaks down? When a previously harmonious relationship, marked by seemingly mutual trust, is sullied by the failure of one party to honour their half of the contract?

Well, my reaction can be measured in stages: anger, an eruption of cynicism, and now sadness.

I hope this situation can be resolved, that trust can be restored. We’ll see, I guess. For now, I am looking at this as a learning curve. I always knew that people have an extraordinary capacity for deviousness. I just wasn’t used to being on the receiving end of it.

Looking for gold

I got a call from a guy I vaguely know yesterday. He’s more a friend of a friend but he’s a nice chap, and very funny.

He had been out all night and had found his way to Bloomsday’s, my favourite bar in the city, and got my number from the bartender.

Anyway, he asked what I was doing (nothing) and said I should come down. I told him I’d be there in half an hour.

We started talking about things and he told me he’d just broken up with his girlfriend because she had found out he had cheated on her. He met a girl while he was on holiday in Turkey and met her again back in Copenhagen. But it turned out that her friend was a friend of his actual girlfriend’s.

He was swiftly rumbled.

And now he is regretful.

“Next time I’m going to a be a good guy,” he told me.

He asked if I was seeing anyone and the bartender’s laugh was the answer.

I smiled and said that I was ploughing a single furrow and that was fine for now. He said I should be looking, and dating, and sleeping with as many girls as I could.

The barman laughed again!

My new friend said that if you wanted to find gold, you have to go prospecting. “You’re not going to wake up and find a gold nugget under your pillow one morning.”

I said I’d always believed that these things happen when you least expect.

“Most of the gold prospectors who moved to California in the goldrush found barely enough to live on,” I argued.

“But at least they tried,” was his response.

The problem is I found a whole heap of gold once. And let it slip through the sieve.

Poem part 2

I wrote a while ago about the time I put a poem under the pillow of a girl I liked.

I ended the story with me bottling the situation when she told me that she’d hoped the poem was from me.

Well, the truth is I denied writing the poem but later that evening we went for a walk and I said that even though I had not written the poem, I wish I had done.

We kissed. Under a blossoming tree, on a hot summer’s day. So long, long ago.

I don’t care I like you

We make a lot of mistakes, we do things we probably shouldn’t do, everything is imperfect.

The best times I’ve had are doing things I shouldn’t do, in fact they’re the most perfect. And they’re probably mistakes.

But i’d make them again.

And then i’d regret them again.

And then someone would say something profound when you’re out having a drink and you’d evaluate your life so far in light of that illuminating sentence and you’d have an epiphany and realise that you have nothing going for you and that your life is a sham.

And then biking home the air would rush through your hair, the sky would turn cerise to aubergine… and you wouldn’t care anymore that for weeks you’d woken up in pain, lamenting the chasm you’d opened in your own heart… and there would be nothing to do but admit you’d made a mistake and that you were not perfect, and nothing was, and never would be…

4×4 vs bike

I just conducted an interesting experiment.

The idea popped into my head as I rode to meet a friend after work – who would win in a collision between a 4×4 all-terrain off-road vehicle and my bike?

Well, today must have been my lucky day.

For no sooner had I imagined this intriguing scenario when a Mercedes GL-Class 4×4 (price – £57,529) ploughed into Everton, my clapped out bicycle (price – £50), sending me hurtling through time and space, and rendering Everton, and my knees, utterly useless.

I have had four beers now to counter the pain spreading through my body but it’s growing in intensity. Updates to follow.