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Dick Turpin

So I was watching Supernatural. A nice enough series with a distinctly action based bent. But then I realised something very important. It's opening credits. Blink and their gone! And that's happening a lot these days with series. They don't have opening credits, I mean, not really. And that's crazy! When I was growing up US imports had AMAZING opening credits. Their theme tunes ROCKED MY WORLD!

Think about it.

Knight Rider
Street Hawk

They are all balls to the wall amazing.

Now what do we get? I mean, do't get me wrong, at least some series bother doing a theme tune (Lost, I'm looking at you!) but really, where is the BLAMMO moment?

So yeah, that's why I'm better than all you younger folks.

Or am I wrong..?

Any really great theme tunes out there? And no, I don't mean something that I could hear in a HMV as I look for the 3rd DVD in my 3 for £15 deal. (Walkingdead)
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Sean Bean is Sharpe

I left my job last month.

I was very proud of working at AIUK. It was a good job with good colleagues. I was pretty good at what I did too. The last few days there were very odd. I don't really remember the very last day, mostly a blur. There were quite a lot of people at the 'he's going' cakes, and I do remember wondering if I was about to cry when my line manager and R., who I had volounteered for for 3 years9 were both talking about me. And there we're leaving drinks after too.

The one thing I really remember when people kept saying 'Oh, you're leaving? That's sad' was that I wanted to grab them and screm 'Yes I am! But you hav NO IDEA how hard it was for me to get here! I deserve more! I deserve a marching band, 21 gun salute and a cake with multiple strippers ready to jump out of it!'

I didn't do that. I just smiled, shrugged and mumbled something.

Getting a job at AIUK was hard, really, really hard. Ignoring the fact that anyone getting a job in the current climate is dificult in the first place, I'm steal dealing with some pretty nasty mental issues. And I had to get to the point of being able to even think of applying, which took ages. I once read that, after two years on incapacity benefit, you're more likely to die then get a job. Go me, breaking out of that curve.

I clearly couldn't have got this far on my own. My support has been amazing, and without it I couldn't have gotten to the point where I could get a job. But it makes me think about all those people who don't have help and support, who are just left to rot. It's a truely depressing thought.

I don't have anythign to say today, I just wanted to sit down and type something.

And to say thanks.
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(no subject)

Now I've said many times I don't know that much about 'finance'. It confuses me. Lots. But back in 2009 the Bank of England started quantitive easing. (Printing more money) The theory being it would spark growth in the economy. We would have infrastructure projects with happy workers earning an honest wage. What happened was the banks got the money and used it to rebuild their capital. I'm not sure if this is a good or a bad thing, does it just prop up a crappy system that has led to huge amounts of suffering for societies most vulnerable or is it the only way to protect society itself? That's not really the point, though it would have been nice for the BoE to just come out and say that was the plan.

The amount of extra money that's been printed is £375 billion. That's quite a lot. And again, let me reiterate that I don't really know how global finance works. I do know that poor people spend it and rich people save it. If you had given that money out to those most in need rather than hoping it would be invested then they would have frittered it away on things like bills, food and travel. That helps the economy, it actually does GROW the economy.

I mean, it would grow the economy more if the special, business friendly tax rates we hand out to companies who keep coughing and pointedly glancing at one way plane tickets to Luxembourg was a little more society friendly, but still, most of that money would get back to UK banks in the end anyway.

So what am I missing? (Seriously, what AM I missing?)

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In The Slammer Like MC Hammer

While enjoying a meal with a few folk the other day I was quite surprised when one of them decided to - and I believe I'm using the word correctly here - harangue me over my decision to attempt the 3 Peaks. This wasn't the usual "Haha, you're mad. How do I sponsor you?" conversation I have come to now recognise, it was a full on assault against my plan. For over ten minutes, in which the only outcome was that I would be left nothing but a broken shell of a man both physically and mentally (the word traumatised was used), I tried to defend my decision but to no avail. Well... I say that. Actually as I pointed out my relative youth and fitness level, training regime and other ways I am preparing I found myself quite reassured.

Of course chatting to someone who's done the three peaks two days ago left me a bit nervous, but you can't have everything.

So thank you to everyone who's been so supportive. You've no idea how much it helps.

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Past Failures, Future Hopes

I got sick in 2001. Very sick. And by very sick I mean utterly bug nuts crazy. If you knew me then you’ll know what I’m talking about. I couldn’t leave the house, for a lot of the time I couldn’t even leave my front room. I was unable to answer the front door or the phone. I couldn’t walk places on my own. Taxi drivers literally had to hold my hand and walk me to the car. I was even hospitalised for a time. I can confidently say that that was the worst time in my life.

So, why mention all this ancient history? Well, when I was ill I made plans about what I would do when I got well. Unfortunately I think the part of Bard the Bowman in the Hobbit movie isn’t going to happen now. But I did want to get a job at Amnesty International (big tick – thank you), be able to go to a restaurant and buy my parents a meal, that kind of thing. Something I read about at this time was the National Three Peaks Challenge. It looked like a great idea, but something I’d probably never do, mostly because no one would ever want to do it with me. Because of this I stopped day dreaming and went back to learning the part of Hamlet for when the RSC called…

It turns out the 3 Peaks is something I’m going to do! Between the 21st and 22nd of July I and a few chums are going to climb the highest peak in England, Scotland and Wales within 24 hours. That includes travel time. Considering where I’ve come from, this challenge has got me amazingly excited.

We are going to be doing it for charity. Our chosen charity is AIUK. If you would like to donate some money that would be fantastic. If you don’t want to, that’s also fine. I’m just thrilled, excited and I wanted to tell you! I’ve included a link to our joint Just Giving page (It’s in Robs name, don’t worry, he just needs the attention).

Just Giving Page: https://www.justgiving.com/Rob-Shuster

So yeah, please do message me and stuff with questions, taunts, encouragements. I'm just very, very excited about this!
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(no subject)

I've never been s big fan of the theory of mutually assured destruction. It's always just seemed to me like playing chicken with *everyone*.

I find the idea even worse when the person who can give an order that will possibly lead to the end of the world actually believes that that might improve things.

Unlike many of my friends I have no issue with religion. I don't really care to much about separation of church and state - compare general religious tolerances in Europe and the US - and I believe that doing something because God will punish you if you don't is actually a better reason than 'because it just makes me feel good.'

But I do get a bit shuddery when someone who thinks that death in the service of Gods will or that the end of the world is an improvement has the power to make it happen.

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Opinion Polls

Opinion. When did it become so important? I don't want people to email their stories or text their comments. Why on earth should I respect someone's opinion? People are idiots. We go around forming opinions willy nilly. We glance over someone's shoulder on the train, read a few lines in their god awful free hack sheet and pop, an opinion just forms, without even thinking about it.

I respect a persons right to hold an opinion. You feel free to go ahead and hold what ever you want in your head. But respecting a persons right to have an opinion and respecting that opinion are two very, very different things.

Opinions are not sacred. There isn't anything special about them. Opinions are a method we each use to understand the world around us. We each base those opinions on different things. Personal experience, learned knowledge, anecdotal evidence, what ever. However we develop them, they are what they are. Opinions.

Don't get me wrong, I like opinions. Listening to them and reading them is kind of like enjoying a tour around an art gallery. You get to see the wonderful creations the human mind has created. And, as in the art world, there is a lot out there that's bollocks and even more I don't understand. Wrapping your head around them can be enjoyable.

But if I'm trying to learn about a subject other than the nature of the human soul I'll take fact over opinion any time.

In my opinion.

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(no subject)

I'm tired.

Really, very tired.

Coming off the back of ten years unemployment I'm in a job that means I'm hitting very long days and where I have a large number of physical and, for me at least, complicated mental tasks. It's a lot of work and a lot of stress. Please don't misunderstand me, I enjoy the job. It's just taxing. However I feel much more of a sense of purpose and drive. Even the self-doubt - and there is a lot, and for good reason, beleive me - is stimulating in a left side of your body tingling kind of way.

So I often find myself in an odd situation. On one hand I'm tired out because of work, on the other, I feel much better in myself, also because of work.

Life is a very strange thing.