2 year anniversary!

I started this blog 2 years ago yesterday. And yesterday after a 2 hour wait at Green Clinic, I was seen and checked, given the OK and told not to come back for 4 months, that’s next year and made Kate and I very happy.

So it’s just over 2 years since my treatment started, so long and yet so short. What paradoxes time can throw up, flexing like a whore as dear old Bowie sang.

Off to Devon on Friday to see Jo, Kate’s sister, and Den then doing what looks like a fancy foodie fair at Powderham Castle near Exeter on Saturday to flog my unction. Hope my little stall is next to the Neal’s Yard one. Also hope we do not spend all our profits, if there be such, on foodie stuff. I’m going to do a pathetic little beard count as I drink my artisanal coffee. Interesting this flogging lark, the selling not the S&M lark, as I think I’m quite good with the patter, yet very generous with the giving out of free samples. Also have been pissed off trying to get a couple of healthy type shops to stock my unction. One, which I’ll not name but is in nearby Wareham, I called a few times each time being told to call another day. Eventually the bloke who runs it was in the shop when I called, the shop assistant went to talk to him and returned saying he was far too busy to talk to me. So now I’ve asked a number of people to go into the shop at different times to enquire as to whether they sell Duncan’s Unction.

Still missing Grace, am off to Bath tomorrow to give her a hug.

And wally watson, what an already past it’s sell by date speech yesterday, banging on about people, i.e. the Cornynistas, not celebrating the achievements of the bliar era. And saddo khan going power crazy. Sadly neither really properly understands that power without an underpinning philosophy will fall apart sooner or later. We are all, except the kleptos, suffering from the fall out of ‘turbo capitalism’ and the neo-liberal ‘project’. Sadly the left, not just in this country, have just tried to ameliorate the effects of neoliberal globalism rather than present a proper alternative that benefits all of us as well as the planet.

And poor old drumf with his dodgy microphone and biased moderator; twat. And I’m sure he won’t reveal any tax details not because he’s smart tax dodger, but because he doesn’t want people to know that he’s not really a billionaire. Narcissistic twat.

Where’s Alf Ramsay when we need him? And Wiggo, are you really a drug cheat? Oh the sad corruption of everything tainted by money and power, watch out Duncan’s Unctions.

650.jpg

Keep on keeping on, love Duncan

Advertisements

The treadmill of modern life.

Feeling quite sad today. Getting Grace into university this year was rather rushed as she decided she wanted to go this year and not next so we’ve been busy getting things sorted. Left little time to prepare emotionally, although I’m not sure you can actually do this except to have it in your emotional being for some time that an emotional event is going to happen. Anyway, it wasn’t until we were back home from taking Grace to Bath and I was cooking lunch that it hit me that I wouldn’t be cooking for Grace again (I know this isn’t totally true as she’ll be home for holidays and maybe home when she can’t afford to exist alone in our extortionate rentier country). But I won’t be cooking for her again as my child living together in our home. I cried and tears are welling up again, there is a big Grace shaped hole in our house. I never imagined it would be like this.

Still, we were pleasantly distracted on Saturday night as we had a barbecue atop some scaffolding at roof level of a friend’s house. The previous Saturday at a wedding do when talking to these friends I said that we too often talk about how ‘we must get together’ and the like and then do nothing about it and offered to cook them an interesting chicken dish I’d read about that day. They immediately suggested eating on their scaffolding before it came down soon, so there we were eating on the scaffolding; John sat tossing his sausages and the rest of us drinking more circumspectly than usual. It was fun. We then adjourned to the garden so that John could indulge his pyromania further with a large fire. I sat in the same spot all the time which was downwind of the fire hence I was often engulfed in smoke. During times of smoke engulfment I knew that sooner or later the smoke would blow elsewhere and I could breathe smokeless air which would smell, taste and feel all the sweeter. My brain really is chemo-addled.

Next check-up tomorrow.

Every now and then I read the Saturday review of the Grauniad in the hope of getting my bias confirmed and am often disappointed. Not this week as 3 books soar up my must read list: Springsteen’s autobiography, Robert Harris’ latest on papal corruption and Mark Grief’ with the brilliantly titled (well to my fevered little brain) ‘Against Everything’. It’s Grief’s writing that I want to read first as he appears to reflect my thinking and distils my thoughts: “In Against Everything, n+1 founding editor Mark Greif asks us to rethink the ordinary, take our own lives seriously and explore how we might live an honest life in these dishonest times. In conversation with writer Laurie Penny, Greif will discuss everyday life under twenty-first century capitalism: why we put ourselves through the pains of exercise, what shopping in organic supermarkets does for our sense of self-worth, what the political identity of the hipster might be, and what happens to us when we listen to too much Radiohead.” In the book’s preface Greif writes: ““I taught myself to overturn, undo, deflate, rearrange, unthink and rethink.” Good stuff eh? In his essay “How to live in the age of plenty” he describes going to the gym where people do exercises that mimic what people used to do in their working lives and ‘naturally’ kept them fit, so fit that they died early from physical exhaustion. He describes how he goes to the gym and stands “in the usual stance of mutual disregard” pretending not to notice what’s happening around him. But then he breaks convention and looks at all those around him and experiencing a Blake-like vision ends up with the mantra “You are condemned. You are condemned”and gets off his treadmill. I’ve tried using gyms a few times over my life and each time experienced similar feelings, I certainly looked around at others and noticed how no-one else looked around and wondered why people were doing this stuff.

Kate and I went for a long bike ride yesterday, the weather was pleasant, our countryside is beautiful and we picked some blackberries for today I am going to make some artisanal apple and blackberry shortbread.

mick-stevens-man-is-running-jogging-in-a-circular-treadmill-hamster-like-treadmill-ha-cartoon

Keep on keeping on, love Duncan.

Golly, what political correctness.

My blog began in response to my cancer, it’s a means of keeping friends and family and other folk updated with my crabby condition. Solipsistic bastard. From the beginning I also included stuff I think about and this is now my prime mover for writing. Solipsistic twat.

Yesterday whilst driving the BBC news on the radio reported that voting was finishing for the Labour leadership and appended with an item from Mr Jeremy’s ex-wife who said she’d voted for owen toad and that it had been hard to observe her ex-husband’s efforts over the past year. Such blatant anti-Corbyn bollocks. I also heard that theresa may’s former pet dog is not going to vote for her in next year’s general election.

Soon after the news item I observed a public house operative moving with the alacrity of a 3-toed sloth whilst preparing their place for the day’s custom.

And then today I read of another person on the same village selling the following t-towels:

3514c24900000578-3633163-image-m-126_1465473602142

Now following the top left call to freedom of speech I begin my splenetic spluttering, but where to start as there is an absolute plethora, just look at what the woman has put on. Just think what this racist, anti-black caricature is upholding. My befuddled brain is boggled beyond belief (my best alliterative sentence yet). What cognitive dissonance, just what is she trying to express? You middle class liberal twat Duncan, who do you think you are to present a different view with your political correctness to question this woman’s right to express how she feels about golliwogs, that you can’t airbrush out our cultural history, that a golliwog represents aspiration. Absolute bollocks dressed up with some voguish modern terms. Why don’t you make a t-towel showing slaves or blackshirts? Both part of our cultural history. Ask any black person how in any way a golliwog represents aspiration. I know a black person who used to live in the same village, he said there were many members of the klu klux klan living in the village but he sold them all the sheets for their dressing up. Maybe that sort of aspiration? Or maybe the aspiration to get pissed on cider, much like many indigenous peoples drink to cope with their lot in white dominated societies.

Any counter arguments welcomed for discourse,

And I’m feeling sad with Grace going to university tomorrow, I’ll miss her but I’m excited for her as she embarks on the next stage of her life.

When swimming through the sea of life best to use breastroke, better at clearing the shit out of the way (a George Carlin quote).

download

Keep on keeping on, love Duncan.

 

 

Boycott apple.

Just heard on the toady show that banks are upset at the increasing scams being perpetrated on their customers, they’re upset because that’s their job.

And also heard Tom Watson on the same show, actually he looks a little toad-like, and he made a very unsubtle dig at Mr Jeremy saying that he, Mr Toad, comes on to the toady show to discuss policies unlike Mr Jeremy who doesn’t play that game.

Time to have a massive boycott of apple; they have the massivest pile of money and the massivest deficit in paying the peons who actually make their stuff.  They are possibly the massivest tax avoiders, come on you EU and reclaim our common wealth. These applefuckers exploit the Earth and their peons and the supine lick the arse of cookthebooks who ‘courageously’ has a phone produced that has no earphone socket. As Benny Hill sang ‘What a World’.

And where have all the pokemons gone? Crazes get ever shorter lived. How long before apple bring out a new model every week?

Another check up a week today, will try to keep the anxiety at bay.

Teaching Grace how to make risotto today, she wants to learn before going to Bath Spa on Friday. Trying to book a B&b or hotel in Bath for a weekend at short notice is difficult, especially for one weekend night but airbnb provided a result. And when Kate saw the owner’s name she knew her, one of Den’s (Kate’s brother in law) old girlfriends. Only 2 degrees of separation.

WARNING - Thieves Operate in this Area.

WARNING – Thieves Operate in this Area.

Keep on keeping on, love Duncan

 

 

 

Peonage for our times.

I love learning new words and I feel even better if I not only remember them but also what they mean. So, after reading most of the Grauniad at a lovely little craft fair on Saturday, (rule number one of selling is don’t just sit there reading a newspaper), I’m pleased with myself at remembering peon and peonage. It was from an excellent essay by Ben Fountain https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/sep/17/american-dream-divided-nation-equal-opportunity-trump-clinton-campaign and had the great title: “How donald trump feasted on the corpse of the American dream” and he used the term peonage:

“A peon is a person subject to peonage (/ˈpɒn/, from Spanish peón [peˈon]), a type of involuntary servitude of laborers (peons) having little control over their employment conditions. Peonage existed historically during the colonial period, especially in Latin America and areas of Spanish rule.”

And we too have become peons, especially our young folk. I recently wrote about my daughter entering peonage as she begins at university. On Saturday night someone mentioned how excited other parents had been at the news that their progeny had been granted a large mortgage. It’s like the old joke: what’s easy to get into but difficult to get out of? Trouble. Just substitute debt for trouble.

Thing is that peonage has spread to the professions and middle class life, although one could argue it’s ever been thus. Just think of the junior doctors dispute and as a teacher I was always fulminating at some management bollocks or government decree. And what does all this peonage do? Make already rich fuckers richer.

Mr Fountain also quoted one of my favourite American comics, George Carlin: “It’s called the American dream because you have to be asleep to believe it”.

And I loved not only what Mr Fountain wrote but, as with all good writing, how he wrote. Example: “Then there’s that other American dream, the numbed-out, dumbed-down, make-believe world where much of the national consciousness resides, the sum product of our mighty Fantasy Industrial Complex: movies, TV, internet, texts, tweets, ad saturation, celebrity obsession, sports obsession, Amazonian sewers of porn and political bullshit, the entire onslaught of media and messaging that strives to separate us from our brains.”

And this Fantasy Industrial Complex, this world of hyperreallity, has led to the next ‘leader of the free world’ possibly being someone who trades in a very weird world of lies, one donald drumf. Now I know we’re all fed up with the spin and lies of politicians but this is something different and very dangerous. Two sets of people I’ve spoken to recently, who could be classed as sentient beings, said they liked drumf and that they didn’t like the lying Hilary. On both occasions I felt I’d slipped into some parallel universe, that I was with actual living beings saying stuff that I normally just watch and hear via a screen. On both occasions I couldn’t help myself and asked these people how they could go with someone who crudely lies almost every time he opens his mouth and at the same time repeat the mantra about ‘lying Hilary’. This is cognitive dissonance on an industrial scale, confirmation bias not needed at all.

From Owen Jones a brilliant line I’m still laughing at: ‘Our new foreign secretary, Boris Johnson – a joke now lacking a punchline’. And I’m still smiling at Watford beating moanrinho’s babylon. And my team, the Blues, are on a good run.

And I’m looking at peonies in a new light.

283_quote_to_ponder_carlin_over

Keep on keeping on, love Duncan.

Homogenous bollocks.

Themes run through my blog, reflecting the themes of my life and whilst that old trope confirmation bias plays it’s part it doesn’t necessarily deny any truth. All I want is the truth, just give me the truth. In our hyperreal, globalised, super-connected world that is changing so rapidly on the screens before our eyes a certain homogeneity is easily discerned. Go to any city and cars look the same. Buildings look the same. All the same shops. Go into almost any coffee bar, restaurant or the like and a similar aesthetic dominates. Everyone dressed and accessorised the same. Especially the bearded ‘hipsters’, they all look remarkably similar with their weird retro look.

It’s all so weird, like we need this comforting homogeneity whilst pretending that we’re all so hip. Of course this is all on the surface as most of us bumble along, being taken for a ride by all the kleptos and their pr fabricators. And the ride will get more difficult, especially when we want to travel abroad as soon we’ll need visas and the like to travel in Europe. Now there’s irony; the brexiteers claimed they’ll reduce red tape and suddenly a whole lot more appears and good old British exceptionalism will have us in the slow lanes at immigration controls.

And Hector and me cycling happily up the High Street when Charlie the Bikemonger races by on some sort of electrically powered bicycle. And so many of our Olympians winning medals, is this what the Olympian ideal is all about? Almost makes me want to support Australia. And moanrinho gets his tactics wrong and babylon lose, haha. And Birmingham doing well, think I’ll put a bet on teams beginning with the letter B winning all 4 soccer divisions, come on you Cherries.

Shit, now I’m wanting everything the same.

"Can you recommend something photogenic?"

“Can you recommend something photogenic?”

Keep on keeping on, love Duncan.

 

The ‘real’ world.

Two recent events, one real the other artifice, have been bothering me and caused me to now write. Last week I met a friend and during our conversation I mentioned how pissed off I was with all the costs now associated with sending one’s progeny off to university. Not only are our poor children saddled with vast debts we parents are expected to fork out a great deal, mainly sorting accommodation and associated sundries. As I expanded this to rail against ‘rip off’ Britain, including transport, parking, bureaucratic bollocks like DBS (disclosure and barring service) and so on the person I was conversing with said this was because I had been a teacher and was now entering the ‘real’ world inhabited by the likes of him. What arrogance, dressed up as good old ‘common sense’, another term that can be categorised in the dustbin of bollocks.

The second event, the artificial one, was in the Archer’s special on Sunday when one of the jurors became angry when another juror talked about him not being in the ‘real’ world. He, quite rightly in my opinion, asked how this other person could claim existence in this ‘real’ world whilst others who happen to have different experiences, beliefs etc. are considered not to live in the ‘real’ world. This belief system that people have to rationalise their own as compared to other’s existence by telling them ‘welcome to the real world’ really pisses me off. And woe betide the next person who says this to me, they’re going to get a right (and left) earful.

Actually I think I’ll just ask them to explain what they mean by the ‘real’ world, then perhaps they’ll receive something from, what they logically must think my ‘unreal’ world that really exists, like a big bin of bollocks. Now there’s an image.

Time for another real world Kliban:

nothingness-b-kliban

Keep on keeping on in the real world, love Duncan.