28 December 2007

Philosophy of Life

It is only recently, in fact over this very Christmas period, that I have really come to appreciate the fact that I do indeed have a new outlook on life. My massive well of bitterness, cynicism and anger at the way the world is does indeed still remain but I no longer allow it to interfere with the small pleasures I try to take in everything. I have heard people talk about living in the moment, or living each day as your last, and these philosophies seem to be the closest to the way I now see things but still miss certain aspects that I find essential.

Take wine, a good example. A glass of wine with a meal is something which many people do take some sort of pleasure in, though I suspect the vast majority of people in this day and age simply drink it as many would have once drunk water, milk, or something similar with their meal. To most it seems to be simply something to accompany the meal, nothing in and of itself. To a connoisseur of wine then the wine is possibly the major aspect of the meal, but still they miss something. The wine itself can be savoured and tasted, enjoyed, remembered. The way that the wine may compliment the meal, or not as the case may be, is equally as important and as much pleasure can be taken in that. Each experience can indeed be new, even if it is one you have felt before.

Many times I have walked in the rain, simply out of enjoyment. Today I found myself caught outside without my hat, and I do not yet have an umbrella. Many began to dash for the nearest shelter, hurrying along, suddenly desperate to be elsewhere, out of this meteorological phenomena which they have decided is unpleasant. It was cold, chill throughout and I was near-shivering already, but I did not, and still do not, believe that hurrying to escape this, joining the mad rush for crowded shelter, would in any way benefit my health. Instead I paused for a moment, tilting my head back and letting the rain strike my face, damping my hair and trickling down my neck. The fact that it could be considered a pleasant or unpleasant experience was not something I was interested in at that time. Merely that it was an experience, a sensation that I have experienced before and probably will again but never in quite the same way.

Living in the moment implies an impetuousness. Seize the moment, grab the now, worry nothing for the past or the future, simply live now. I oppose this most strongly. The past makes us who we are, the tragedies and traumas of it combine to become the aspects of our personality. There is nothing to be ashamed of in the past, though I would not relate certain events to various people for reasons that only I need to know, but the past is gone. If you hold on to what is slipping away, you will be trapped by it, but if you let it go completely then you have nothing from before. Have no regrets for what is gone, no matter what it may be. Mourn when appropriate, and then smile and laugh afterwards. There are times when we feel sad and we should indulge ourselves in those moments, but we should not draw them out any longer than we have to.

No more should we artificially try to extend moments of joy and happiness, pleasant though they may be. Our minds themselves know when the moments are past and trying to force them to remain will simply seperate us from the world.

I suppose that is the main point. Do not live in the past. Do not live in the future. Do not live in the present. Live, be, experience. Sorrow, joy, guilt, freedom, hatred, love, pleasure, pain, accept all of them simply for what they are, and neither expect nor try to make them or yourself anything more. Certainly try and change things, advance yourself if you wish, sink if you wish, but do it for yourself rather than because you feel you should. What matters is what you want, what you think is right, not what others tell you or what you feel should be so.

27 December 2007


I have always found this term amazingly insulting, particularly since it was first used of me when I was in my younger years, and shortly after it was used I was diagnosed with pneumonia, hospitalised for a month and effectively bed-ridden for another five after that. That was fun. Hallucinations, respiratory problems whenever I tried to so much as move, and according to various people I was simply suffering from man-flu.

Anyway the reason I am bringing this up now is that I am suffering from flu. I am not suffering from man-flu, where the basic symptoms are of a cold but the apparent suffering is worthy of the black death. In fact soon, as I have been for the last few days of suffering, I will drag myself from my bed, check to see whether my temperature is maintaining its average of 104C, pull on clothes to suit my new look, and make myself be active without complaining. All of the complaining I may have wished to do, but refrained from, the last few days will be occuring in this post.

Each of the last few nights I have spent several hours wrapped up in a thick duvet, with three portable electric heaters blasting huge quantities of heat at me. This is an attempt to feel warm, or at least not cold enough to have chattering teeth and be shivering. My head feels like it has been carefully stuffed with cotton wool, and my nose feels like someone has stuffed corks into it. My throat meanwhile feels like I have deepthroated someone wearing a sandpaper condom. All in all, I do not feel particularly well, and the next person to accuse me of whining or having man-flu will be subjected to a sound verbal, and if I feel up to it physical, thrashing.

So now I need to concentrate on concealing my symptoms, in order to meet Russian to go to the cinema tonight. Should be interesting at least. I still cannot quite figure out whether or not I could push my luck with her and get away with it, and until I do so I am not taking the risk. I should also be visiting Sweetie some time in the next few days, before the New Year, and my moral dilemma has been heightened once again. See, before it was just that I was willing to potentially have some fun with my friend's sister, nothing serious. Now however he has threatened me, trying to scare me off her. I do not take threats well.

25 December 2007

Little Sinner Nic

I can tell you all now that Christmas day is a bad time to realise that you have run out of cigarettes, nicotine gum, tobacco and fixings, pipe tobacco, lozenges, inhaler cartridges or any other product which contains nicotine. I have managed to keep a calm head throughout most of the day, right up until the last minute when I had to leave the family meal and walk home, hoping to regain control of my temper and stop the nicotine withdrawal fit which I was suffering from

For anyone who may not understand, do not start smoking, but I feel that I should explain the reason that a nicotine fit can be unpleasant. Nicotine is a sedative, which helps to suppress and calm anxieties. Essentially it is an artificial coping mechanism for times of stress. Unfortunately when this coping mechanism is removed, the anxieties feel much worse, and with the other effects that withdrawal brings the phrase 'I would kill for a cigarette' could easily become literal. My mind still is not quite straight now, even though I managed to acquire a half-pack.

Which brings me to the second part of the story. On the walk home I passed a gaggle of girls or young women, of indeterminate age, chattering and smoking. Passed may be the wrong word. A nicotine fit can massively heighten certain senses, at least I find it can, and from several hundred yards away I tracked the smell of smoke to the group. I then had to think of a way to seperate these people from their nicotine, which took me a few seconds to plan while 'Merry Christmas's' were exchanged, and were replied to with rather drunken hails in response. My cunning plan was then complete, and I requested a cigarette, explaining carefully that my sanity may be at stake and hoping that my rather snappy clothing would help speak for me, not to mention my recently neatened goatee and charming hat.

They did. One of the girls handed me a cigarette, and another asked if I would be alright for the rest of the day. I expressed doubt and, with giggles that I hope were due to alcohol rather than youth, one of the girls offered me the remains of a pack in exchange for a kiss. Now what worries me is that in various films and popular culture cigarettes are prison currency, and essentially I traded sexual favours for a few of them. The sexual favours were extremely limited, and involved no more than a little tongue and a touch of wandering hands, but does this now make me a prison bitch?

Oh, and I got a phone number out of the deal as well. I really need to start printing up business cards. All I need to do now is hope that the girl in question is indeed legal. I suspect that she is, although that may merely be optimism.

24 December 2007

Coffee Addiction

I have been spending far too much time in coffee shops recently. Admittedly this time has been spent in very pleasant company. Russian is easy to talk to, squishy in all the right places, wriggly, ticklish, and seems to be completely and utterly disinterested in anything other than friendly flirting, frustatingly enough. Of course I could be misreading, since she does keep asking me to come meet her for coffee or alcohol, usually coffee. Either way, she is pleasant company.

The problem though is that any time I have an excuse to get out of the house at the moment, I pretty much have to take it. If I am at home then I am expected to do various different chores, fix computers, clean, cook, help wrap things, decorate, plan, make phone calls and so on. So I get out of the house a lot.

When I say a lot, I have so far this week been out for five cups of coffee with Russian and met her for drinks in the evening twice. The fact that she is a lot nearer to me than most of the Cast is convenient, though her apparent lack of interest is rather less useful.

The main point though is that I believe I have regained my caffeine addiction, not something I particularly wanted. On the other hand there is very little I would not do for possession of this coffee machine.