Thursday, 12 March 2015


Buggerance !!

 I didn’t read much as a kid. There was too much going on in my young life, I had little time or need for fantasy in my day. It wasn’t until I started work in the Shipyard at Swan Hunters on the Tyne, in the North East of England, that I discovered the joy of a book.
At 16 years of age I found myself looking for a book to read during  downtime, meals etc. during the work day. Instead of coming off the ship, we’d have our tea breaks and lunch on board ship. Someone (another apprentice ) introduced me to ‘The Lord of the Rings’ – the rest, as they say – is history.
I don’t know when it was that I started reading Terry Pratchett’s ‘Discworld’ series. I have a feeling I was first attracted to one of his books by the wonderful ‘Josh Kirby’ illustration on the cover. It may have been ‘The Light fantastic’ it could have been ‘Witches Abroad’. Whatever book it was – I knew I loved these stories, these characters and I wanted more.

“I meant," said Ipslore bitterly, "what is there in this world that truly makes living worthwhile?"
Death thought about it. CATS, he said eventually. CATS ARE NICE.”
― Terry Pratchett, Sourcery

I, like thousands if not millions of others have waited for each and every episode from the discworld. I have read and re-read each book countless times. Each time seeing something new, realising and delighting in some little joke that Terry was sharing with his readers. Loosing myself in the fantasy comfort blanket that was the discworld.
I was fortunate to meet Terry a couple of times – at book signings of course, when he would share a laugh, sigh your book with some little extra gem. When I was buying a couple of books for my Kids ( Johnny & The Bomb and  The Unadulterated Cat) as well as the latest offering from the Discworld, he wrote wonderful little messages in the covers. They still have these books.

I asked him how he decided on writing the Discworld stories. He told me that he looked into a mirror and they were reflections of reality. I loved that simple yet concise description.

“Studies have shown that an ant can carry one hundred times its own weight, but there is no known limit to the lifting power of the average tiny eighty-year-old Spanish peasant  Grandmother.”
― Terry Pratchett, Reaper Man

A couple of years ago, I was having trouble sleeping. I’d tried all sorts, hot milky drinks, exercise, counting naked pole dancing girls, jumping over my bed. Nothing worked. I then came across an article that said if when you went to bed, you read for 15 minutes - it would help to reset an active mind and help you relax and thus – sleep. Light hearted material was best.  I purchased copies of Terry’s books on my Kindle and each night I read a couple of chapters. I’m happy to tell you it works. Well, it worked for me.
I’m currently re-reading ‘Unseen Academicals’ and sleeping like a baby.
Thanks for the Memories Sir Terry. I hope someone takes up the mantle and carries on the Discworld. It would be sad to leave the lives of our friends like this. Perhaps Sir Terry’s daughter – Rhianna, has already been primed and is ready to take up the crown (well tiara) and continue the legacy?

Sunday, 8 February 2015

I want to know what love is?


I have wondered, probably like many of you - Just what is love.
Is it physical, mental, internal, external, is it visible. Can you touch it, taste it. or like common sense do we just accept that it exists and unquestionably believe that everyone either possesses it - or is capable of receiving, giving, perhaps dreaming of it. Love?

Young Love 

When I was a small boy, love for me was cuddling up to my mum on the couch. Her arm around me, snuggled together, safe and warm. I can not remember ever feeling that 'loved' again. I know when my own children were young and they would snuggle up with me, I felt an overwhelming sense of protection, of security and unconditional joy. This instinctual love of our offspring - well until they reach their teen years and we want them out the house - the little shits!.

As I grew older and things hidden in the dark recess of my underpants began to grow and gain a life of its own, love was lust, was love I think. Could this five second release of frustration and desire be relief. Is it possible to love many girlfriends in this way? Or are we merely testing equipment, honing our skills as we search for the perfect partner, our match made in heaven, our soul mate.

I have honestly believed that I found my 'Soul mate' on more than one occasion. Throwing everything into a relationship, forgetting my friends and family and focusing on the one true love in my life - only to crash and burn some months, some years down the track. Love sucks!
Why is it if we can fall in love with someone, accepting all they are and everything they are not - why do we fall out of love so easily?

Hard work

Falling in love with one person is bloody hard work. You have to muzzle all your instincts to sleep, shag anyone you can, because Love is about commitment and commitment is bloody difficult. I recently asked my wife what her favourite song was. She said she didn't have one. Now I was quite shocked by this - because what about 'our song'? You know the one we danced to on our wedding day? She said "That's not our song, it's your song'!

I suppose after 30+ years of marriage I should have expected something like that. Marriage becomes like a comfortable pair of slippers, warm, easy to slip into but slightly worn out (and occasionally a little smelly).  Well, if my love is like a pair of comfortable slippers, I'm not throwing them out! So your fucking stuck with me woman!
Because that's what Love is - its  tolerance, painful, angry , spiteful and slightly aromatic. Its also warm and caring, safe, secure and on occasions just a little bit dirty. 

I was studying Physics some years ago, and in one of the units on Quantum Physics , it simply defined Quantum Theory as 'common Sense'. We can't see, touch, hear, smell or taste common sense - but we just believe everyone has it within them. That's the same with Love I'm afraid.

Best of luck finding it.


Saturday, 7 February 2015

Flicking pebbles at the pilars of Life


There comes a point in time when you feel you need to make a statement. That time for me hasn't arrived. I'm quite content to float on the steaming pond of mediocrity. At sixty years of age, I feel as if I've arrived at the back gate. I can either walk through and leave the rest behind - or I can turn around and wade through the shit for another few years.


I was made redundant for the first time in my life a few years ago. It was a relief to be honest. I embraced the chance to do something different. Not that I've been stuck in a dead end job - nope I've had my share of life changes and job and career changes around the globe. Each with its own challenge and adventure, each with its success and failures.

New Start?

So, when it happened - I took a decision to go back to college to learn how to write. yea, I hear you - we all know how to write! But I wanted to write books, stories, plays, film scripts. I knew their was a process, an art to it and so I looked at studying for a degree in Creative writing.
Last year I completed that BA course and headed to my next road. I enrolled at the New Zealand Film and Television School. My thought behind this was - if I can't find anyone interested in making my films - I'll make the bugger my self!

So it was that I completed my Film & television production course last year. It wasn't easy. Don't get me wrong, the work was interesting and exciting. The biggest challenge for me was that I was in a class with 22 other students all in their early twenties. Now if you've had kids - you know what it's like living with teens. To be stuck with them for 8 hrs. a day, five days a week over a year was excruciating. Half the time I wanted to kill them all, half the time I wanted to give them a hug. But you know, being amongst a group of creative and talented kids was great. Would I do it again? Only if someone paid me vast amounts of money.


So what's happening now?. Well I have done some extra work in the buzzing Wellington film industry and I plan to film my own short soon and My first music video in March for a local Death Metal band (looking forward to that). I just need to find the money.

Life doesn't end when your 50 or 60 or 70 or even 80 or 90! Life is what you make of it. You have to grab it by the scruff of the neck - shake it about and bring it under control. I want to grow old disgracefully, I like riding my motorbike, I like getting into trouble with my grandson - I am acting my age - so don't try that one when you meet me. I'm taking life one giant leap at a time. You can join me - or stay the feck out of my way.

Peace and Love.