Last night I dreamed of winter, but as a person, almost a god-like figure. He was at the centre of a circle in a robe that was black but charged with streaks of electric blue, and I mean that literally, the robe was charged with electricity that seemed to flow over the fabric. The circle was formed by other figures in plain black robes who were all bowing down to winter. When winter opened his mouth to speak, there was only the roaring of the wind, and the howling of snow storms. I woke up.
The picture featured here is by an artist called Shimachan over at www.deviantart.com and recently won a competition there.
I had a great comment come in on a post from two days ago featuring Buckminster Fuller. I was really pleased to get this, as it's from someone I don't know, and I can't imagine how he or she found me:
Another good one from Fuller: "We are now synergetically forced to conclude
that all phenomena are metaphysical; wherefore, as many have long
suspected - like it or not - life is but a dream."
Thanks CJ. What struck me most about this quote is that it's so similar to Hicks' idea that 'It's just a ride' and it is the same belief that underpins a lot of NLP thinking, too.
Yesterday morning I went to my monthly reading group meeting. We were discussing the Bernard Schlink novel The Reader. What with the crazy workloads lately - trying to keep three balls in the air before you've learnt to juggle - I only left myself two hours yesterday and the time between waking up and 10.00 this morning to read. Fortunately it's a short novel and utterly absorbing, so I managed it just in time.
The joy of reading groups is that you find yourself reading books that you would never have picked up under any other circumstances. I would never have picked this book up for myself, as it centres on the story of a man who has a love affair at fifteen with a woman twice his age. The novel follows this man, Michael, through the course of his life, as he discovers years later as a law student that his lover was a Nazi war criminal. It wrestles with the issues of guilt, judgement and the legacy of the Holocaust for the generation of Germans that followed.
What I love most about the reading group discussions is that we move so effortlessly from discussing the complexity of judgement in Nazi war trials and digress onto the failure of contemporary school dinners. The overwhelming verdict was that we all enjoyed The Reader. I thought it was exceptionally well-written and very powerful. It is rare that I find a book which asks so many questions of the reader without attempting to answering them.
I was at the Naval Museum for the afternoon, where the action is getting thrilling. We're now onto the writing stage of the exhibition preparation and I'm involved in the writing for several panels.
This is like no other writing project I've ever done. We have a word count of 150-200 words per panel, and whilst this, at first, seemed like a gift to me, I now realise that when you have enough material for an essay of about 5000 words, turning it into 150 words is actually quite a challenge. I spend hours writing and re-writing short, pithy sentences. Compared to my boss' job, which is to take the panels written by myself and several others and edit them into one continuous, flowing narrative - my task is incredibly simple.
I popped down to the Costalot Coffee Shop at the Dockyard entrance on my break for a latte. I hate this establishment, for so many reasons, mostly because of the Starbucks emulation that underpins its existence. The sales girl and I discussed the early onslaught of Chritmas. She was friendly and funny, and exactly the sort of person the Council should employ for its frontline services, though I fear Costalot pays better.
She put a special Christmas star on my huge latte (everything about latte just screams 'pretentious twat' doesn't it?) and laughed when I described people who prepare for Christmas ridiculously early as 'bastards.' For this alone, I would employ her. The excellent customer service is a bonus.
As I left Costalot, I noticed a sign on the wall (reproduced on all their merchandising, including the ma-hassive latte I was clutching) that read: "Peace and Latte to All Men."
Do you see what they did there? That's right, they made me want to hunt down and kill their marketing director. Can you picture the meeting where that was approved? A bunch of overpaid and underworking suits laughing so hard at their lame Christmas punning one of them bursts an ulcer. I know I'm having a bad moment when the only comforting thoughts are to kill myself or someone else. Ho ho ho.
The day ended beautifully with a visit to the Heights from the fabulosa Lisa, who has fully forgiven me for all my previous (highly untrue) allegations. We had planned to get a DVD, but soon realised the ridiculousness of this plan, grabbed a Thai food takeaway and chattered happily like excited chipmunks for the next five hours. Blissful. A big thank you to Miss Clark for ending my Thursday so beautifully.
Today's Beautiful Things
1. My brother, Matt, finally got his internet connection, so at some point he will start posting obscenities for me here - can't wait
2. Late night lightning and the rumble of distant thunder
3. The cheer of chatting, the glamour of gossip and the comfort of conversation