It’s been a while since I wrote anything personal here. Mainly I suppose because there hasn’t been much to report. But recently I have been buzzing with an idea for a blog, and failing to find a way to start it off have decided to combine the two.
I have new partner at long last. Pauline is her name, and she has been living in Shetland, so enjoys remote living as much as me, as well as caring for animals. My menagerie so far has only reached a paltry three cats (plus all the wild boar and deer that like to call this their home), but am hoping that together we can make amends and incorporate a lot more waifs and strays, in particularly donkeys, which she has shown me the joys of saving from enslavement and cruelty (endemic in Spain). So I guess we will be building not just a new home but an Ark too, and possibly just in time (read more below).
There has also been a tremendous response to the posting about EP for sale, hopefully a new guardian will turn up for that soon and we can be on our way to France.
Plus there’s the football. Yes, even I can’t believe am actually writing this. Sport is an anathema to me, always has been. Especially that anyone can waste a precious life supporting/ following it (let alone take part). But before you reach for the keyboard and bombard me with comments, this is not a tirade against what you might consider perfectly healthy and normal. No, what I wanted to say is something inspired by looking for a new book to read. As you probably know (or guessed) my life deliberately excludes tv/ radio/ newspapers/ along with an internet connection, so reading is very important. For which I get through about two or three titles a week. Most from my existing library, which I like to re-read at least once a year and never tire. Others I buy second-hand, whenever there is spare cash. Recently it’s been a Nick Hornby fest, he is amazing. And desperate for more of the same I wondered if FEVER PITCH would be as good, being the only title I don’t have. For obvious reason, it is about football. I remembered there was a Channel 4 film with Colin Firth, so to save making a costly mistake, watched that first.
Incredible. And by this I don’t mean CF’s awful hammy performance. But that so many people can be so utterly consumed by something so meaningless, not only that, but a vast cross-section of society too. It is a religion. And add in all those other crazies (for which I have never had time for either), it seems we have developed into a species where the majority are now totally under the spell of their fanatical leaders. The motives of which are not good.
What got me into all this? Ronald Wright’s A SHORT HISTORY OF PROGRESS. I can’t get it out of my head. Because it’s the most important thing we should all be aware of/ addressing, and because of football/ religion we aren’t even realising it exist.
I’m going to do him a great injustice by trying to explain this, but you’ll get the jist at least. Throughout 95% of the time we have existed on this planet, a period of approximately three million years, we neither progressed or evolved, in any way whatsoever. Each and every day over that whole time was pretty much the same. And this is normal. Every other species on the planet behaves the same. They appear from nowhere, then eventually settle into their natural niche/ pattern within the ecology, the population stabilising out at its sustainable level, according to the availability of food/ predators. Ours over that period evened out at around 100,000. Then suddenly, 12,000 years or so ago, something changed. Nobody knows what, but we opted out of the natural order and started to consume far more of the other species, with a subsequent growth in our own numbers and the knock-on effect that had. When I was born, 60 years ago, this had reached 2.8 billion, with the majority of all the other species virtually extinct. Today it has reached 7.4 billion, and we are left with a mere sliver of the ecology, while reproducing at a rate of three times to the number of deaths.
This should be setting off alarm bells (several thousand years ago). Yet it hasn’t. I doubt anyone knows what it means. Because our religions (including football) tell us instead that all things are cyclical, and that they naturally regenerate. So if Arsenal has a bad season this year, next year there will the chance to do better. If we sin we will be forgiven. So as long as the sun continues to rise and set, we can do whatever we like and all will be fine. But we can’t. Nature, that precious ecology we rely on for everything: air/ water/ food/ and countless other things, is not like this. It is about diversity and renewal of its precious resources, mutual interdependence.
While we are the opposite, celebrating the increase in our numbers and its effect, forgetting our pastmistakes. Until the day comes (very soon I think, who knows it could be tomorrow) when we can no longer breathe/ hydrate/ or feed ourselves.
What more can I say, to all those happy in their world of terraces and pews? Except to ask that you at least reflect on what happened at EASTER ISLAND (Google it).