this is where all the bits that didn’t fit in anywhere else ended up. Beginning with a list of the kind of things that make my kind of simple life just perfect…
I simply adore cinema, always have, and with an equal fervour, abhor television (haven’t had a set for 25 years). My current number one classic (as always) being TRULY MADLY DEEPLY (directed by Anthony Minghella). The rest are newish, with a few older classics that never date (in no particular order): A CASE OF YOU/ A LONG WAY DOWN/ ACROSS THE UNIVERSE/ CHALET GIRL/ DINNER RUSH/ FEED THE FISH/ IN A WORLD…/ SALMON FISHING IN THE YEMEN/ SIDEWAYS/ BEGIN AGAIN/ OBVIOUS CHILD/ OCHO APELLIDOS VASCOS/ PITCH PERFECT/ NEWLYWEDS/ NICK & NORAH’S INFINITE PLAYLIST/ ONCE/ PAUL/ RUNAWAY BRIDE/ ROCK THE KASBAH/ SLEEPING WITH OTHER PEOPLE/ SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE/ BEFORE WE GO/ CHEF/ LOVE ACTUALLY/ WHEN HARRY MET SALLY/ ZACH & MIRI MAKE A PORNO/ WHAT IF/ PRIDE/ YOU’VE GOT MAIL/ THE SECOND BEST EXOTIC MARIGOLD HOTEL/ WHAT WE DID ON OUR HOLIDAY/ AMY/ FRENCH KISS/ MANHATTAN/ DAN IN REAL LIFE/ A GOOD YEAR/ CLERKS 2/ JET LAG/ THE DARJEELING LIMITED/ GAYBY/ CELESTE & JESSIE FOREVER/ LARRY CROWNE/ MOONRISE KINGDOM/ THE FISHER KING/ LOST IN TRANSLATION/ BLACK CAT WHITE CAT/ THE SCIENCE OF SLEEP/ AMELIE/ THE LONG ENGAGEMENT…..
book-list to download my full current list
I don’t have a favourite genre, I like virtually anything (except flamenco/ fandango), as long as it’s been recorded with care and performed with soul and integrity.
click here list to download my full current list
other things I like:
food – am always hungry and will eat virtually anything. Especially enjoy curries & spicy food/ pasta/ pastries & cakes/ chocolate/ desserts (the measure of a great meal)/ plus all the usual suspects like twiglets/ crème eggs/ chocolate hobnobs/ speciality flavoured crisps… the smell of wooden cabins hot chocolate at RIVER CITY CAFÉ (Powell River, British Columbia) accompanied by their three-berry slice portuguese pastel de nata cakes good neighbours the smell of freshly caught fish (especially Newlyn, Cornwall) people who are original in thought and deed Penzance/ Covent Garden/ Camden Town/ & Paris in the 1970s bicycle trailers bright vibrant colours cats gardening handmade by me or others things to work properly meals out with other people bargains and second-hand repairing broken or discard items spring-time espresso coffee without sugar/ milk graphic design interior design magazines making books learning spanish living abroad walking home in the dark through the forest living well away from other people learn how to take honey from my bees teaching english to adults photography/ making films writing with a fountain pen having lots of coloured pencils/ wax crayons/ pens to draw with alternative living magazines incense hats cycling instead of walking using natural materials writing and receiving letters original designed fabric thick wool jumpers corduroy shirts/ trousers to one day own a genuine harris tweed jacket ancient south american design the street markets and hardware shops of Northern Portugal flannel sheets second-hand bookshops and record shops eating in season beachcombing real French croissants thrift stores wearing socks in bed being around older people vintage motorcycles pedro jiminez sweet wine/ mead/ & homemade aguardiente (coffee flavour) vinyl LPs handmade socks & fingerless gloves tartan scarves the sound the frogs make in the grey-water pond making xmas cards & presents for friends having odd bits of crockery illustrated children’s books Amsterdam Feria district in Sevilla Main Street Vancouver real cream ice-cream the smell of lime flowers and orange blossom learn how to snowboard fresh figs working in the garden before the sun rises people with a passion giving back and foot massage
sundays living alone microwave ovens Eckhart Tolle/ Michael Reynolds/ Bill Mollinson & all the other self-appointed gurus/ experts in dodgy alternative ideas, getting rich off it GPs swimming being cold the radio reliance on cars towns and cities bullfighting SEPRONA smoking drugs same-sex bar culture strong artificial smells like washing detergent/ shower gel/ perfume dog shit how horribly thin I have got since Maureen died holidays/ travel except to visit friends driving cooking religion politics wasting money or time people who say what they think you want to hear sport tv newspapers crowds complementary medicine the national health service “fashion” or “followers” walking/ hiking ex-pats anyone in “authority”/ bureaucracy swimming pools supermarkets & processed food wild boar & deer children feeling sad dust & dusting late nights make-up & hair products getting up in the morning mobile phones earning money being trapped indoors IKEA painted finger or toe nails hairdressers heels on shoes/ boots worrying about money working with cement dishwashers microwaves poetry flamenco & fandango watches piercings & tattoos architects nationalism cafetiere coffee british tea sports/ lounge wear cds pastel colours charities royalty the infernal combustion engine shopping centres
Everyone’s path will be different, that’s something to celebrate.
The most important thing is to keep nature at the centre,
and after that everything else will fall into place.
Have a little faith in destiny too.
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the moral right of the authors has been asserted
no part may be copied, by any means, without consent
I usually hate anything like this, sycophantic chest puffing. But in this case there is an exception. Because no amount of praise would ever be enough to make up for what our greatest influence/ source of inspiration/ and long-time friend, has done for us over the so many years we have known each other. Shirley-Anne Hardy. Tireless campaigner/ writer/ publisher/ champion of the rights for everyone, to be able to live a simpler and more sustainable life. I heartily recommend her book BIRTHRIGHT IN LAND, BY WILLIAM OGILVIE…AND THE STATE OF SCOTLAND TODAY (see the BOOKS page), followed by the sequel, published in 2011, STOLEN LAND – STOLEN LIVES, AND THE GREAT CON TRICK OF DEBT! Both a guaranteed riveting read and invaluable reference.
Where I aim to tie up what all the previous pages have merely begun to introduce. Beginning with the question of the moment:
“why is it most people do not feel the slightest responsibility for the imminent extinction of our species, even when it’s their lives which are going to be cut short so tragically?”
I believe the answer is because we’ve lost that all-essential connection with who we are, something every other creature has chosen to retain, and that’s to act instinctively. Their lives are full of clarity. They know where they come from, and what it is they are meant to do. We however live in a fog of confusion and dissatisfaction. This is because at some point in the not so distant past some bright soul among us discovered he (yes, women are blameless) could have a much easier time if they got everyone else to their bidding, and they got away with it by pretending they knew something they didn’t, and ever since then they and their successors have continued to get away with this ruse, enjoying a life of immense privilege and wealth at our expense.
How do I know this? Because somehow I’ve become immune to their methods. Explaining also the waywardness as a child, total inattention at school/ college, always the employee from hell, and now why I am holier-than-thou at trying to save the planet. Though it only really started to become clear when we decided to get rid of the television (and stop buying newspapers). That was a revelation like no other. Suddenly I could see how certain people (the media, behind who were big business and state) control totally the way we think, the way we live. They do this because they need us to be willing and fearful, to work and spend unquestioningly, in order to feed their limitless appetite for power and wealth. Interestingly, this process can be traced archeologically. Because ever since we decided to be ruled over instead of being ourselves, the physical size of our brains has been diminishing. One could say, in direct correlation with the invention of ways to make life easier. Interestingly, no other species has been affected in this way. Perhaps more pertinent though, no other species has felt it necessary to change their existence as we have. Particularly the choice to deny a perfectly good set of senses (hearing/ sight/ smell/ and telepathy), for one. Language. Creating a system that led us to where we are now. With films in 3D, where most people prefer illusion to reality, and our total extinction is imminent.
Thus on this path we continue. The endless and pointless cycle of over-populating, in order to create yet more serfs to replace the ones dying prematurely, and to satisfy the insatiable demands from our masters. Totally oblivious to where this is leading.
How stupid we have become. To let greed rule. And to base everything we believe in on a system that is so fundamental flawed. Who but the most stupid of all could imagine substituting a means of communication that works across all species, with one that is only fully understand by a tiny fraction of its own. All those hundreds of different languages, each totally incomprehensible with any of the others, and where each can take a lifetime to acquire. Then even if we have been one of the lucky ones and have sufficient vocabulary/ understanding of how to construct sentences, it is still woefully inadequate to express anything but the most basic instructions. But even more bizarre, is why we actually need to know all this stuff. That language is intended to make us more superior with. Like what happened in the past/ might happen in the future/ symmetry/ how to measure/ quality/ direction/ orientation/ weight/ height/ temperature/ colour/ stages/ proportion/ models/ profitability/ worth/ or gods? When surely even the most simple soul can see it is pointless to even begin trying to make sense of a world so patently and infinitely more complex than even the most intelligent of us could claim to understand. It’s like obesity, or a computer. Here we are busy stuffing ourselves with information, junk, and what is happening. It’s slowing us down, both physically and mentally (not forgetting killing us too). Look around, is there any other species with the slightest interest in all this crap? No. Yet they’ve been here just as long as us, they don’t have any of the problems we’ve created, and they’ll still be here long after we’ve gone. If you still don’t understand what I’m getting at, this urban-centric fantasy we’ve created to live in, then read PINCHER MARTIN by William Golding. Or even better try this simple experiment. Choose a picture or photograph, of anything. And without showing it, describe that image to another person, using only words. I’ll save you the effort, it’s impossible. No matter how long you tried. Yet if they were blindfolded, then asked to smell/ taste/ or feel an object, anything, then what they were experiencing would be exactly the same as if you did it. Some people could even do it without an object, tell you what you were thinking. Right down to the smallest nuance. Just not be able to express it in words. And that is how we as a species are living today. A poor imitation of what could be, if only we each had a real life and gave up on all this modern nonsense. Return to how it should be.
Thankfully we can. And at the same time also try and put right some of the damage we’ve caused the planet. Simply by breaking free from the jobs and money trap, stop watching tv/ reading newspapers/ listening to the radio. What is a life otherwise? Spent entirely to earn and spend money. It’s definitely not a happy or a healthy one. Whereas living more simply has already brought me the closest I’ve known yet to knowing what true freedom is. Being able to wake up each day with the sun, labouring on our land to make what we need and stay fit and youthful. I also rejoice knowing that now I am putting something back, helping to replant the global ecology/ forest. This has to be the most fulfilling feeling there is. It could be yours too. The only question is, do you want it enough?
“believe half of what you see and nothing of what you hear”