the night out that never was

It is fair to say I’m pretty hacked off this morning. Yesterday was Scott’s birthday. Scott, who took drama at uni, is quite a good friend of mine, and I rather like his sense of humour. I heard from rocky that they were going to Yates’s, in Hanley, last night, and agreed to meet her there. I still don’t have a PA, so I got mum and dad to drive me over. En route, it began bucketing down. We’re talking monsoon here. Thus, when we got to the place, after missing it the first time, there was no sign of rocky or any of my friends, only some dombass at the door who took the piss when me and dad walked in.

We waited in the rain. It was raining, and we had left mum in the car, so we couldn’t really wait long. Besides, it was possible that they’d called it off due to the monsoon. My biggest mistake of the evening was not bringing Rocky’s number. After ten or fifteen minute, we headed back to the car,

Dad phoned rocky when we got home. It seems we’d just missed each other. It’s extremely annoying – I want to see my friends; I want to go for nights out with them. It’s nobody’s fault, of course, except mine: had I picked up Rocky’s phone number from the kitchen table, dad could have called her when we were outside the pub. Ho hum. I’m sure there will be many more such occasions; it’s just frustrating, and rather sad.

time machines

short of anyth,ing better to write about – the highlight of the day being the aquisition of two frames for my graduation photos – I found this articcle to show you. this guy thinks he can make a time machine by ccoiling light. If you ask me, and I’m no physicist (even if I use a VOCA) he’s nuts, but it’s an interestting read.

Anyway, all being well, I’m off out later for a night in handley with a gfew uni mates. It’s Sccotts birthday. I’ve been home for a wile, so I can’t wait!

74 Ways of upsetting a disabled person

today I’ll post a link eo this, a very witty, observannt list of 74 ways to annoy a cripple, written by my friend simpn stevens. I hope to be working on a book with simon in the not too distant future. Judging from this list, it should be a very rewarding process indeed.

the reccipe for generosity:

something very cool has happened, if not sub zero in fact. Mum has a new recipe book. now, anyone who knows my mother, and the contents of the kitchen, will know that this in and of itself is nothing special. What is special is the fact that the book in question was made using contributions from people who work at mum’s company, and the fact that they chose to donate the proceeds to two charities: cancer research and Onevoice. How cool is that? It’s as cool as when Charlie told me the donations from the gospel choir concert were going to Onevoice. It’s bloody brilliant.

Thanks to mum and everyone at Acumed global. You are amazing!

ootp

My parents and I went to see the new Harry potter film last night. It was either this or the Simpson’s. I think we made the right choice: although I haven’t seen the film, I’m reticent about the Simpson’s film. I think that it is best suited for the 25 minute slot. Mind you I still want to see that movie (note I don’t say film – I reserve that term for a work of art of a single auteur. Stuff like the Simpson’s isn’t really art in that sense).

Harry potter and the order of the phoenix is a treat. Its dark and gripping. Although its billed as a kids movie, and there’s stuff in there for children, I think it is now more appropriate to think of them as adult movies. We’re reading the latest novel at the mo, and there are definitely allusions to things such as Nazism and the holocaust. And it is truly dark. Rowling may have began the potter series as sugary sweet escapism, but that sugar has steadily fermented into something far more potent. In OOTP, we see Harry become a man, and general no less. Although this may have been a bit clich, I found him extremely convincing: this angry, disturbed young man essentially alone in the world. It was as powerful as star wars, and I kind of want it to be accompanied by some grandiose overture like the Jedi music! I’m sure the potter films will now be just as immortal as Lucas’s masterpiece, for this is stuff that really grips the soul. I also think Daniel radcliffe has grown into a fine actor – he’s finally stopped being that snotnosed little kid who irritated me. The same goes with the supporting cast.

With two more films to go, these films are becoming as immortal as the books. What we’ll ever do if and when jk Rowling retires I dread to think.

liberalism

I have been out again in defiant. I went for a long drive, through the park, into town and back via the lanes. Long drives give me a chance to think, analyse, and reflect on my values. Yesterdayafternoon, I was pondering university, as usual, and specifically the people I met there.

University definitely made me more liberal. Well, perhaps its more accurate to say it drew my liberalism into sharper focus. Before uni, I was very liberal, but I still had certain biases against certain activities. It wasn’t until I actually met people who indulged in certain activities that these biases were questioned.

Take the example of drugs. The usual standpoint is that all recreational drugs are bad; I used to think this, before I actually pondered it. I realised, of course, that there are reasons why people take drugs (usually ultimately concerned with discontent with the status quo). One also realises the inconsistencies in society’s attitude towards drugs: why is it that people are allowed to smoke tobacco or drink beer, but not take weed? Tobacco causes cancer, alcohol is also very dangerous. I like my beer, so is it not hypocritical for me to criticise anyone for smoking cigarettes or joints? Back at school, I used to get uptight at my friends who smoked, but then I realised precisely why they showed such disregard for getting lung cancer: life would be too short.

And life is way too short to get uptight. If my friends take joy from smoking, let them. We only have one life to lead, one body to control, surely if it isn’t hurting anyone else, why do we all get so uptight about people doing what they want to do? Passive smoking hurts others, which is why I support the pub smoking ban, but in their own homes, or if it doesn’t hurt anyone else, why can’t society tolerate such activities? No doubt there can be some harmful consequences from such activities, but I have only observed the positive consequences – people having fun, feeling mellow and being happy. I’m informed that the harm comes from ‘bad batches’, which would suggest to me a need for legalisation and regulation of such substances. Bring it away from the underground; this way, at least, the problem of drug crime can be irradiated.

Now, I don’t smoke for physical reasons, and drugs are a pain to procure, so I just stick to alcohol. This does not mean I’ll disassociate myself from friends who do such things? Why would I? same goes with my gay friends (up until 30 years ago, homosexuality was illegal). Humanity is wonderful in that it comes in all shapes and sizes – this is all part of that diversity. Naturally, one must always be careful, but my point is that uni made me question my stereotypical views. There were many people there, from all walks of life. My point is that uni made me more accepting of others and it made me appreciate the diversity of life.

CaMoron claims society is broken; what he, for the most part, means is that it does not conform to his narrow stereotype of what society should be. I just think society is changing as people explore new ways of living. Exploration can only be good. Thus, I say live and let live, and see what happens. I value diversity and acceptance, now more than ever. The Tories seem to want everybody to conform to their rather narrow view of what life should be like. Despite the fact that they use the language of tolerance these days, this seems meaningless rhetoric when their leader speaks of wanting to mend a broken society.

Naturally, tolerance can only be part of the issue. Things like domestic violence and burglary cannot just be accepted, and so need to be addressed. But, unlike most conservatives, I think it is wrong simply to dismiss perpetrators of such activities as simply evil or bad. Behind every action there is a reason. I’m not completely dismissing free will, but I don’t think our actions come wholly from choke. Behind every action there is a reason, or else all human action will be chaotic. Therefore, I say it is better to take an accepting approach, and try to understand why people may turn to crime with a view to addressing the root causes. After all, simply to lock people up who ever did anything wrong would be a waste of human resources.

Moreover, what is ‘wrong’? 40 years ago, homosexuality was wrong! Am I wrong for liking to wear girls clothes. Back on campus nobody batted an eyelid when I did that, or when we went through the sports hall in zentai suits. Campus, of course, is a very liberal environment, as I say; students are very open, and accepting. After all, there is no logical reason why anyone should be offended or object to such activity. If only the world was like a university campus.

I guess this is all pretty boilerplate and obvious. I’m just attempting to establish my views on the subject. I may, of course, be setting up a straw man, but my gut says that the Tory’s attempt to appear liberal, and to take the centre ground are just a sham. Historically, they are the party of iliberalism and intolerance. If we look beneath the rhetoric, they are just the same old conservative party, wanting everybody to conform to their narrow values, resenting difference and unwilling to look deeper than the black and white, right and wrong.