Pink Smiley Faces

Pink Smiley Faces
Stuart Semple "Happy Cloud": The artist released large bubble-foam smiley faces in to the London Sky during 2009 outside the Tate Modern to see if people had a happier day becuase they saw something different

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

The smell of Cycling

With a new leaf to be turned assessing my current work hiatus, I thought I'd use some of the time to keep myself positive and get back to normality. One thing that does not occur in the back of your mind when commuting to London (sat down/perched on someone elses arm rest/the bin area is also the bag storage zone) is the amount of time you spend sat in front of the computer. When you do get home your no longer capable of exercise for the train journey has rattled you to pieces and work has burned your memory to concentrate on anything useful.

Therefore; after seven months of commuting even though I was carrying a 3.5Kg laptop on a 2.5 mile walk everyday in each direction between the train and home/office, I have found I've turned into more fat, the so called muscles (some people are always going to be stronger than me) I had no longer existed. Which set me thinking, maybe I could do some exercise to break up the week and reintroduce some positives of this odd 'free' time.

Today was the first time I've been out on the bike around town covering Tunbridge Wells, Groombridge and High Rocks. A nice little route a friend suggested which was approx. 6 miles - (my speedo is flat or its not realised I'm interested again). I knew it would hurt, the first one after a slightly longer than usual winter break (it's been wet) always hurts/it's always too windy/it's always nervy and I suddenly don't like how busy town is. So when I got on the country lanes and tracks of NCN Route 18 out of Groombridge back to RTW, I was quite happy until the big down hill into Groombridge became a gradual climb back out the otherside. I was physically...inconsulable, especially as I had to use most of my gears to do hills I used to pretty much cruise over. Finding the rhythm and breathing consistently is key, not being stressed about whats around the corner and how long is the hill is key to a good mind set so you don't burnout on the way round.

After all this hard work and getting off the bike as I was partially lost in RTW Common/High Rocks little lanes -I did the same hill twice! - I got home and could smell my old school Design and Technology Lab... slightly burnt wood from cutting, fresh MDF shavings, perspex glue and a distinct aroma of P38. I think the neighbours are still doing the building work. Nothing like good memories of D.T days to take me off the cycling for a while, it's good stuff, all round cycling and past times from D.T days.

I yet to convince myself - but I do know that what it costs me in alcohol is the same as a years Tennis Membership, not economically better, but certainly the mind, body and soul could be if I quit drinking and did exercise instead (just one part to a bigger story).
Burn those extra calories sat on my tummy/swap them from lazy fat to lean muscle engines.

Don't be poking my tummy now, I didn't know I was so squidgy :-P  - you know who you are!

Sunday, 30 March 2014

We ride tonight for tomorrow may never come

Through Ashdown Forest the sunrises and bakes the land early for a late march morning. Still, the ground remains saturated, yet the overflow gullies and streams cut out into the grass heath footpaths have stopped.

What remains is the the water flowing along the main stream. This no less sounds nearly twenty years old. Back to my childhood of rolling miniture waterfalls on the pond, the stream ti Ashdown Forest carves over tree branches and round corners, bubbling... no different is that sound of gushing water you hear when visiting the fish pond shops.

Maybe childhood was not as bad as I remembered,
maybe that was what got me into this career;
the need to play with water
listen to it changing tune and paths,
dependent on the days weather.


If when passing places, you meet no people,
it does not matter, for the river still is there,
it does not stop, for continual motion is it's job.

At night it is asking questions, wondering where people retreat,
the search and belonging, the passing of time,
will at times allow it to rest, for it is at peace.

It may see more in winters, and less in summers,
it even runs a close shave of death when summers peak.
Time still tells it, it will be back, the land sits ready for it,
like a tree dormant through winter.

The tree knows no end,
and even after a hundred years,
the tree still stands.
The tree waits for the river, sucking water from beneath the ground.
The river see's its job, eternity, continual motion.

The tree knows time is limited but takes a new form,
materials for the people passing,
a returning of the energy to the ground.

The river knows the tune it holds,
people passing will stop and stare,
listening for the rolling on the waterfalls.


 We ride tonight, for tomorrow may never come, the river will continue its motion.

Friday, 21 March 2014

I know what's missing, a challenge...

Please click on the links to you tube music as you go along.
 I know what's missing, a challenge...
Maybe it's the lack of Tennis,
maybe it's the cycling challenge that's missing,
kayaking of late has been a nice thought,
it be nice to do.

Anna Ternheim, Shoreline

Moby, Flower
New places, new ride routes to explore, a break up north, to get fit,
write to the job people who may give me my next milestone,
to get back in the saddle and go with the red lights of trains and cars falling (fading) in to the distance.

Moby, Flying Foxes

To new heights, hill tops to look out upon the landscape,
 where the sun might go down,
 but rises early,
ready for a fresh run of sweet smelling rurality.
Rammstein, Haifisch

The motion.
The journey.
The freedom of pedal power.
Bushcraft is the way forward.
(An old story of Ray Mears living in the wild no less)

Anna Ternheim, My Secret

 Du bist das Schiff ich der Kapitän
Wohin soll denn die Reise gehen
You are the ship, I'm the captain
Where do you want to go? (Rammstein, 2009)
I thought of doing the London to Brighton night ride this year but it's going to be mental and not much to see.
So the Music is a helper to the cause of all:

I know what's missing, a challenge.

Monday, 17 February 2014

Completing for the sake of completing

Something has changed recently, now the year is fully underway...who would believe were already half way through February...time is challenging us already the deadlines are coming through thick and fast again. As I said though, something has changed, why is it I now have the urge to complete things, tidy things so that they cannot be undone.

For example, I've suddenly become a minimalist, I want absolute tidy clean kitchen sides where a little bit of stuff hanging around was ok. This is not OCD, just perhaps finally getting the hump with other people not tidying up. I've also found that bottles with alcoholic or not need to be completed, as if it can't sit there as an enjoyment for the next occasion it needs to be finished off and binned or a fresh one needs to be ready to go and located in a specific spot where it's not going to get in the way. Uber organised, I think not.

This also seems to be the case for books too. I'm in the middle of what is turning out to be quite a good read. 'One Man and His Bike' by Mike Carter, except even though I'm only 90 pages into it, I now feel the need to get it done and dusted and out of my hair. As if for some reason, it has been yelling at me for too long to get on with it. I always seem to find things saying you need to do this and either not having the energy or the time to bothered to do any of it.

 Once again I have to get on the train for London, my office has kicked everyone out who isn't needed whilst the flooding continues. Maybe, I should be grateful for not having to travel so far, but it's now incredibly strange that I don't want to work from home either.

Did I get itchy feet? My voice hasn't cleared up with this unending amount of coly cough, I'm going to sound like a really odd person, or maybe just maybe if I'm lucky I'll sound like Brian Cox (the actor) with a hint of Charles Dance in the air...who knows.

Either way, have it your way.
This item of writing ends here.

Friday, 14 February 2014

Why St. Valentine?

My Lovers Heart,
my bleeding Soul,
you keep me safe and make me whole.

How I wish upon the star,
for all of your desires to come true,
you are sensitive where I am not,
your tender loving care out strips my humanity.

To find someone so refined,
like the perfect grape upon the stalk,
is to find the cherished Angels on the Clouds.

Not you or any other, can stop my heart from dreaming of you.
I am yours, need I say more.
Forever my loving Giggle,

I love you,


Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Winter Olympics -Epic Advert

I'm not one for pushing things along too often but as is seen by a few handful of very cleverly portrayed adverts for films, books, TV and radio programs... the style required for the Olympics has been on another scale as was back in 2012 series under two mainstream UK channels. This one however, makes you feel the need to rise to a challenge like no other, a stamina of endurance, something longing deep inside that you must answer to show you are capable of succeeding and beating the odds. It strikes your heart at fear and drives you towards a sense of possible fulfilment, challenge accepted... I give unto thee... The voice of Charles Dance. I'll have that voice thank you, and add it to the radio concoction I have tried to produce from time to time. (If only I could master words and a voice like this).

I am the dreadful menace.
The one whose will is done.
The haunting chill upon your neck.
I am the conundrum.

I will summon armies.
Of wind and rain and snow.
I made the black cloud overhead.
The ice, like glass below.

Not you, or any other.
Can fathom what is nigh.
I will tell you when to jump.
And I’ll dictate how high.

The ones that came before you.
Stood strong and tall and brave.
But I stole their dreams away.
Those dreams could not be saved.

But now you stand before me.
Devoid of all dismay.
Could it be? Just maybe.
I'll let you have your day.

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Where are we going?

I have as far as I recall covered this topic a number of times. Whether focused on work or leisure activities in the past, this one is here to help you stop for a moment and take in the massive amount of hours put in to our daily lives without recognising the great machine we are all gradually turning.

This week I had a very surreal meeting, the context was so big and powerful, my role just doesn’t justify what people who have serious management and operational roles may have to do in their day to day lives. When you consider your own role, there are a number of other people who are working behind the scenes to make it the day to day life continue from the front desk to the top table. And that was just it; the top table had to work at the same level as my world – all be it another team mainly does it, to ensure everyone was safe and no long term issues would arise. Decisions are made just as fast and as easily, it’s just bigger digits on the bill exist, with higher consequences for getting it wrong.

So on my train journey home, I found myself observing all my fellow passengers, but the number of us who get off and have to wander the corridors, fill in spreadsheets and hold debates over topics from the mundane to the important. Whilst we all might hide behind catch up TV and iPods on the train, we may well be sitting next to somebody who has decided to change your life – for better or worse who knows. You may have sat next to someone designing a new phone, social media site, well known journalist or a government worker without realising.

Dealing with all the daily minutiae, means we forget to check in on the wider important aspects, we get tired and bored of doing the same old task. So sometimes a little perspective is required, what if it turned out you had that dreaded phone call of a loved one dying or witnessing a traffic accident where someone was seriously hurt. Would you manage to get through that trauma and not take stock and reassess what were doing in life? If you really said no and meant it, I have to ask if you have any empathy and care of other people around you.

We are forever seeing in the news about how someone was killed by a violent act, maybe at war, maybe a crime. The news has a way of making it all seem normal and either help make your point or give the complete opposite account, we are numbed to the violence because it’s through the TV and so regular. The issue is we are so used to hearing about bad things in the news we don’t take it in, but if that news report was very close to your heart you would pay more attention to it. Swap from bad traffic incidents in the news where a certain number are serious injured to having a doctor ring and tell you a family member or friend was involved in the same type of accident. These are different feelings, so it’s important to note what’s happened, take it all in and formulate a new plan to make it better…after all life is only short.

If we didn’t keep trying to improve life, it wouldn’t be worth living. We need that time to step back and evaluate what’s been happening, and take yourself out of your comfort zone to understand how other peoples lives are affect and how you can help them in the future. Maybe what needs to be done is a little bit of peace time to digest everything as I did…

…on my train rolling and rocking along, through the dark evening, listening to music, staring blissfully out the window trying to make out trees, houses and streets, I’ll never meet any of those people whose gardens I commute through, tired from all the days work, digesting what the people at the top table were having to go through to make sure myself and thousands of others were still safe the next day.

It’s definitely a strange feeling when you are in a meeting and the presenter brings up high profile characters and figures which could change everything very quickly. So as you can see, my little role just fills in with many others but contributes to a wider plan, only we don’t always get to see what the plan is or what the top table people were doing to oversee the success of larger issues whilst I deal with the smaller everyday ones I’m tasked with.

Where are we going?
I don’t know, but it’s enlightening to see that people at all levels have similar problems but just at a different scale. We sometimes need a little jolt to put everything into context and perspective otherwise the little problems would be unmanageable and actually, they are small enough because they might be forgotten about to make room for the important issues you really should be looking at when the time comes.