Tag Archives: Travel

Leeds United: Premier League to Football League Supporter

As you can see from my 1987/88 diary and this blog football was a big part of my life from childhood. That’s one of the reasons people thinking they are a big influence on me late in life annoy me so much. I had a big thirty years of life before coming to Leeds, from being moved from Jersey to  a damp one-parent family council flat where I became asthmatic to travelling to all the populated continents on a shoestring. I learnt a lot at university, and am still learning all the time, with my day-job good for technology and keeping me on my toes, balancing out my coffilosophy deep thought here. Some of the women have inspired some of my feminism, although only added to others before them, and some of my uni friends influenced my appreciation of the British countryside. I’d been hiking around the world before, but hadn’t bothered much in the U.K., trying to be as much of a ‘townie’ as possible when living in the countryside! I’m willing to provide appreciation and thanks to other people, but retract it if they take it the wrong way (such as sexually when it’s not), claim credit for my coffilosophical writing, or don’t consider themselves to have benefitted from knowing me (such as thinking themselves inherently above me). I think the ‘nice’ people have kept me on a ‘good path’, but sometimes think it’s the wrong one, and a dead end, and that I’d be better off deeply embedded with my ‘real demographic’.

Early Influences on Writing

As I’ve written before I dropped out of school in the second year of secondary school, losing interest and increasing rebelliousness, becoming quite politically aware for my age, mixed with the country seeming in turmoil, especially for the working-class. I only wanted to be a footballer anyway, so didn’t think school had any benefit; especially as it was totally focused on rugby union, which I also enjoyed playing, but preferred football.

Rather than schoolwork I preferred reading football and music papers and magazines, as well as The Unexplained: looking back, it’s probably a sign of ADHD, or maybe Asperger’s, having watched a Chris Packham (inspiration for greenYgrey nature correspondent Chris Packwolf!) documentary about his life with a mild form of it. I hope to focus more on that documentary in the near future.

While the first inspiration for my writing goes back to my earliest teaching to read and write, and the books such as Rupert the Bear that probably influenced the greenYgrey, the first big influence was probably the comics I used to read, and during good storylines, used to wait eagerly in anticipation for the next thrilling episode.

I still remember some of those characters. As ‘Hot Shot’ Lorimer played for Leeds, there was a Hamish ‘Hot Shot’ Balfour who played for Princes Park in Scotland; ‘Nipper’ Lawrence who grew up on the backstreets to play for Blackport and of course Roy Race of Melchester Rovers; I recently read the latter’s making another comeback!

Here’s some evidence of my early creativity, inspired and instructed by comics, at the ‘height of my childhood’, born in 1965, so probably the first Olympics and World Cup that I fully knew what was going on, and could watch fully; that’s what I guess now anyway, as they do seem the special ones, although I remember earlier ones:

 

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Leeds United Supporter Career

Growing up in south-west/mid Wales, everybody supports a big team, with Swansea the closest team to the town I lived in, fifty miles away. They were a lower league team in my childhood, so had no supporters amongst my age group that I knew; some had them as a ‘second team’, and took more interest when they reached Division One.

There were lots of Leeds fans, as they were one of the biggest clubs, and as I was more into football than most, I considered myself a Division One Leeds supporter. However, as I played every weekend, I was just an armchair fan.

That changed in 1985 when a friend with ties to the Swindon area asked if I wanted to go to the Swindon v Leeds F.A. Cup replay on February 3rd, 1987 (Footballsite date: I haven’t got a statto brain like a Leeds fan I saw on T.V. that can remember all such stats). I of course jumped at the chance, and four of us went to the game, which Leeds won 2-1 thanks largely to a heroic display by Mervyn Day in the Leeds goal.

I left to travel in August, 1987, and was away for nearly four years apart from a couple of months. I was then home for about two and a half years, and saw a few Leeds games as they returned to the glory days for a few years under Howard Wilkinson.

After returning in June, 1991, in the 1991-92 last Division One champions season I saw Leeds draw 1-1 at Everton on February 23rd and in my first game at Elland Road 0-0 at home to West Ham on March 28th (Wikipedia) (I’d remembered the Norwich game below as my first home one until now!).

In the 1992-93 season I saw Leeds beat Manchester City 1-0 on March 13th (Premier League).

We lost 0-4 to a great Norwich side on Saturday August 21st, 1993 in the 1993/94 season (Sky Sports), but then equalled it with a win, 4-0 v the Wimbledon crazy gang on October 3rd in the same season (Sky Sports).

Leeds Fan Distant Fantasy and City Reality

I left for the Americas later that autumn, and after returning the next autumn enrolled in an access course, and after completing it in 1995 was accepted by the University of Leeds.

I had a season ticket the first year, but then started working there, and I think saw every game over the next decade, when there was lots of glory without quite winning anything, but I did go to Wembley to see the League Cup final in my first season, and the Champions League semi-final season.

After gambling on regular Champions League football, and off-field distractions, there was unfortunately a big slump that has partially ended, with promotion from Division One to the Championship, and the early season was looking good, briefly leading the league, but not the last few games.

I write this having already achieved a winning season for my 5 games minimum: winning 4-1 v Port Vale, 5-1 v Newport and 2-0 v Brum; I also had a ticket for the 5-0 win v Burton but a ferry cancellation meant I didn’t make it, but I was there in seat and spirit!

Although I thought of myself as a Premier League Leeds supporter before arriving in the city, unfortunately I don’t feel like one any more, although I am still a keen follower. I’m not from Leeds or Yorkshire (although I found out after arriving that my Latham name is!), and don’t really want to go to every game like some fan(atics) do.

That’s probably partly down to the team not doing that well, the way football has gone in the last twenty years and my age too. If Leeds were doing well, it was still cheap to go, and I didn’t have other interests, such as this writing, I probably would want to go all the time!?

I feel able to write this with Leeds in a mini-slump, in the hope that it motivates the team to return to form for a tough schedule of four games in ten days. Good luck!

Like Peter Ridsdale, I nearly took Leeds United to the top of the world, after wearing the shirt for the whole of my Jiri to Gokyo Ri (5,357 m [17,575 ft]-high peak) trek in 1999:

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Marc Latham’s books are available on Amazon.

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Leeds United: Lorimer to Cantona Traveller

I was born in 1965 and started supporting Leeds United in 1970. They were one of the biggest clubs in the country at the time, and would go on to be a legendary one until Don Revie left to manage England in 1974. I can’t remember much about those seasons, apart from the two F.A. Cup finals.

Peter Lorimer and Eric Cantona, Leeds United Footballers

Peter ‘Hot Shot’ Lorimer was one of the star players and best known, because he was renowned for having the best shot and scoring spectacular goals, kind of like the David Beckham or Lionel Messi of his time; before European football was televised much in Britain; or Kevin De Bruyne in the Premier League at the moment.

Uncannily, not only was Lorimer my favourite footballer, but I think he looked a bit like me too… and Eric Cantona when at Leeds!

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From Lorimer to Cantona there was a decade and a half of strife. I listened to Leeds win promotion back into Division One on top of Chungking Mansions in Hong Kong in 1990. In 1991 I returned home on the Trans-Siberian from Beijing, via the Soviet Union (as it was then). I continued on the train to Prague in Czechoslovakia (before it divided), Budapest in Hungary and Berlin in Germany (recently united), before hitching back to Britain from there (taking a day to reach the port, Calais I think).

So I was back for the 1991/92 season, when Leeds won the last Division One title, with the help of controversial midfield/forward, Eric Cantona. He inspired my haircut, and I used to play with the number 2 shirt for my local team, as Cantona did, even though I was a centre forward at the time.

I also liked the fact that he tried to be an artist and  philosopher, providing a bridge to the ‘counter-culture’ I also liked. My favourite rugby union player of my childhood was also a Frenchman (maybe my Jersey birthplace influence), Jean-Pierre Rives, a ferocious tackler in my favourite position of flanker. I didn’t know what happened to him after he retired from rugby until looking him up during the writing of XaW Files, and found out he was also an artist!

Here’s some photos I consider my most Cantonaesque (and Lorimer) from my next travel to the Americas in 1993/94, when Leeds United’s resurgence also inspired me to take a replica shirt!:

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Day in the Life of a Worker-Traveller: October 16th, 1987, and 30 Years Later…

As I wrote my blog about travel heaven and hell on Monday morning, October 16th, I thought there was a strange sepia glow around, but put it down to city lights still being on or something, and didn’t think much about it. I wouldn’t have gone out if it hadn’t been forecast to be the last warm day of a spell of mild weather over the weekend. I went out for the forecasted brightest time in the early afternoon, but wondered why when I got out, as it was all cloud and wet on the ground. I think it was also eerily quiet, as somebody said on T.V. later, but I didn’t really notice that much at the time, or think it was for any particular reason.

Prophecy or Coincidence?

However, after I’d walked east five minutes along the canal towpath I saw the sun poking through the thick grey cloud, and it looked the pinky orange some other people also saw, and that was mentioned on the Yorkshire ITV weather report later. My decade-long website theme was the greenygrey, and towards the end it developed a PinkyOrangePurple twilight times theme after a sun-inspired ascent of the middle greenygrey Y: greenYgrey. Together the colour combinations were abbreviated to gYgPOP. The scene I saw on Monday was like a ggPO, with the classic greenygrey landscape lit up by a PinkyOrange sun; not looking Yellow!

This image of the scene accompanying an MSN story, of sun and Liver Bird in Liverpool, does look fully gYgPOP, with the human constructions providing the green and grey!:

Credits: Liverpool Echo

When I sat down the sky was all grey cloud apart from a thin band of blue on the western horizon. Within half an hour the sky had cleared, and was nearly all blue.

I thought that it was quite a coincidence, and would have looked a bit like Jesus parting the sea if there were any disciples around; and much better than King Cnut and the tide, although he was of course demonstrating that he couldn’t overcome nature.

30 Years Storm Anniversary

It was weird that it happened thirty years to the day after Britain’s worst storm of the twentieth century, and is said to have been partly caused by the Ophelia storm that was happening in parts of Britain and Ireland that day bringing dust up from the south, scattering the blues and greens of the sun’s light spectrum, leaving the reddish ones to dominate.

That’s the scientific explanation, and as I’ve been an advocate for science over the last decade I’m happy to go along with it. I’m also happy to let ‘red’ get most of the descriptions, although pink and orange were more accurate, as there were negatives from Ophelia, as all storms, and some of the dust was thought to have been from deadly wildfires in Portugal and Spain.

Leeds got a bit windy – stormy in the night, but escaped the brunt of the storm. I also missed the 1987 storm, as I’d reached Crete by then, and had started my life as a worker-traveller in a village called Pirgos, going to a certain café where employers knew casual workers hung out. October 16th was quite a landmark day in my W-T career, as I started a longish term job that day. Here’s my diary for that day, and some of the previous one:

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Marc Latham’s books are available on Amazon.

Jack Kerouac – Inspired Travel Writer Photo

A few posts ago I wrote of being inspired by Jack Kerouac, and here’s a photo from my travels in 1998 that I think is most reminiscently representative:

Kid Kerouac

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Now (double meaning wordplay: both me at 52 and at this moment),
come to think of it (using photo of Cassady looking like he’s thinking),

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I think I’m more Neal Cassady!:

For homophobic people, I am and was inspired by Beat travel and writing, and the freedom they found, but which ultimately killed them. I pushed myself to the edge in travel, writing and booze.

Women v Booze: Sean Hughes

I didn’t know who Sean Hughes was when I read he’d died yesterday, at 51. I watched Never Mind the Buzzcocks a bit years ago, but hadn’t watched it for ages.

Reading his obituary this morning on MSN I related to him saying relationships hadn’t worked out for him, and he’d concentrated on his art – work.

That’s kind of the attitude I’ve had over the last decade, although as I’ve written, I’m open to offers from slim (size 8ish) beautiful feminine unattached women who really want to be with me, preferably blonde or brunette, with the goldlilocks age of 21-40.

I write the above as much to deter or prove wrong those women (and men) who don’t fall into that category, but try to make out I’m interested in them; often because they see me or share my space, however reluctantly on my part!

Sean Hughes died from cirrhosis of the liver, like Kerouac, showing that women can be a better option than booze for men; but I think only if they are well suited, otherwise they can be an inspiration to booze even more!

Funny Feminism

Reminding me that I used to joke I was a Battersby-Duckworth feminist, referring to Les Battersby and Jack Duckworth, the Coronation Street characters who were famous for being skiving house-husbands, and letting their wives do most of the work, thus being the biggest breadwinners of the family, in line with real feminist thinking.

It was only a joke though, and I don’t really want a wife like Janice or Vera, although I liked them as characters, and would probably like them as friends or workmates in real life, if they accepted me as a mate or colleague, and not an admirer.

Actresses, musicians or models… or even successful businesswomen… in the Goldilocks zone would be a different matter…

My photos are just to rehumanise me, after being dehumanised by polite society for becoming a doctor of philosophy from a chav background in Blighty. My books are my main reason for blogging, but I heard the Instagram bookshelf is the most important book-buying reason now, so thought I needed some more imagery!:

Marc Latham’s books are available on Amazon.

Travel Extremes Experiences Epitomised by Two Families

This weekend I saw two travelling families on television, and they seemed to epitomise the travel experience extremes you could have. I try not to preach, just to relay my experiences and interpretations of those experiences, and further knowledge I encounter. When I set off on my youthful travels I was into heavy metal and rock, and had a similar outlook to Twisted Sister in this video (I saw them at the Reading Festival in 1982, where they got a lot of missiles thrown at them, but I liked them!)

I’m probably closer to the father’s ideology now; need military and strength to protect the ‘free world’ from Islamism (Communism for him, and returned to top of agenda by Trump and North Korea; I used to be a socialist idealist in youth, but have since lost faith in the majority of humanity!); but try to remember my youthful mind outlook, and how I felt about the world then.

As I’ve written before, epitomised by the characters of MacKay and Barrowclough in classic British sitcom Porridge; I don’t know if writers Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais meant to highlight that problem, but guess they do; the nice people are usually taken advantage of by those they try to help; highlighted on a national level by Britain trying to be nice in the New Labour years, only for there to be grooming of British children epidemic, as well as phone fraud robbing vulnerable people of their life savings; not to mention all the benefits fraud and compensation culture draining the nation’s resources.

Battle of Ives

While some of those who’ve used their power to bully me over my lifetime would probably like to be compared to MacKay, I really think they are more like ‘Horrible’ Ives; Wikipedia: Bernard “Horrible” Ives is a creep, a cheat and a snitch, universally loathed (and indeed victimised) by the other residents (and Warders) of Slade Prison.

In contrast, I think they try to depict me as the Ives. Because I have resisted their bullying, and criticised their grooming, they depict me as the ‘horrible’ one, rather than the heroic rebel; an image they try to keep for themselves, even though they are the ones in power!

For example, academics may seem quite high up in society, with positions of power and responsibility, but a lot of them still felt like rebels against the system, and understandably didn’t want to work any more than they were paid to do. However, some went further than that, ‘rebelling’ by grooming students, or not seeming to do much work at all!

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Travel Hell: Taliban Rapists and Child Murderers

The Taliban and I.S. hatred of women and the West seemed to be epitomised by the Canadian couple who travelled to Afghanistan while the woman was pregnant. They were more religious pilgrims than normal travellers, but their decision still seems amazing to me. If he’d gone on his own, it wouldn’t seem so crazy, but with a pregnant wife!

While I’m glad they were rescued, by Pakistan forces, who are also mostly Muslim, providing balance, and showing I don’t think all ‘Muslims’ are bad, the wife had been raped by their Taliban captors, providing them with a ‘sex slave’ for their superiority complexes.

While their use of his wife was expected, they also murdered a baby daughter, and not sons also born there, probably showing their contempt for females (I don’t know the exact reason).

While the majority of serial killers are supposed to be white, groups like I.S. and the Taliban are like whole cultures of serial killers targeting females, and yet like serial killers often attract female accomplices, I.S. manage to groom females onto their side, such as notorious Sally Jones and other white Europeans!

Travel Heaven: Argentinian Travelling Family

In contrast, a couple who left Argentina for six months and have been travelling for seventeen years, having four children, reached Britain this week, and spoke of their joyous experience during their journey around the world.

They have also been to some countries that look dangerous, but I guess they didn’t go to the most dangerous parts.

Sometimes I went to ‘dangerous’ places for a buzz or to test myself, where there were conflicts going on, or bordering them, but it was probably no more dangerous really than living in Britain during all the terrorist threats of my lifetime.

By writing the way I have over the last decade I’ve felt I’ve increased that threat, but have had just as much negativity from ‘my side’ (Britain, liberal – left [formerly, but still on animal welfare and environment!] and especially women – working-class) as those I’ve been mostly criticising.

The latter have probably (definitely in some cases) been stirring up the former with spin or lies, making them think I’m anti-them instead of pro-them, filling those with little general knowledge or interest in current affairs with bollocks, and now I’m so far in the middle I hardly feel it’s worth writing – but maybe that’s good for my writing, in a journalistic way anyway!

Marc Latham’s books are available on Amazon.

Mimi Beyond Me Me Coffilosophy

When I saw a news report about Mimi Anderson setting off on her latest endurance challenge I thought her accomplishments and ambitions were amazing, and it reminded me of Jane Tomlinson, who inspired me to take up long-distance running in 2003.

Simply Endurance Running 

Although she is slim and blonde I have no interest in her sexually as I know her now. That could have been different under different circumstances, in a different time, but as I write this here and now, my only interest in her is as an impressive endurance athlete.

It is better for women that they accept that, but some it seems an insult. They’d rather think that all men are powerless to resist all women; preferring serial cheats and womanisers, like Russell Brand; as long as they’re not going out with them anyway!; to men who try and show that men don’t have to be like that; usually they are like that because they choose to be, or think they can be, and get away with it!

It is also better for gay men to accept me and others like me as liberal minded heterosexuals, rather than trying to out me, and make me into just another gay man supporting gay rights, because it’s in my own interest!

Once the ‘minorities’ or ‘under- privileged’ think they’ve got a ‘majority’ they seem to just start acting like power-crazed ideology-fascists like the traditional white upper classes they’ve been rebelling against since the 1950s. I was a part of that rebellion for about twenty years, but then when I look like the people I was rebelling against the new rebels start rebelling against me: I was quite similar to oh J.C. (Jeremy Corbyn; in political outlook rather than sexual taste!), but now the left reek of ignorance, prejudice and hypocrisy.

Mimi and Me

While most women seem to think I want to be with them, or doing their jobs, I would much rather be running across the U.S.A. like Mimi Anderson. It seems our endurance careers were quite parallel in starting age and time, but Mimi’s done much more and better than me.

From the bio on her run U.S.A. website she started in 2000, aged 36, and is now 53.

I started in 2003, aged 37, and ended last year in Latvia and Leeds aged 50.

Mimi has done much more than me, and probably has a natural ability higher than mine. She probably has a lot more support than me, and a lot less negativity. Mimi is collecting for a couple of charities: Marie Curie and Free to Run.

I could probably have done a lot more if I’d had the motivation; for myself and my demographic; but I was delighted to achieve my ambition of running a marathon every three years until 50, and adding an ultra-marathon just before the end.

There are many men from my demographic who have done more than I could have and received media coverage anyway, such as Tony ‘The Fridge’ Phoenix-Morrison, who did 40 marathons in 40 days with a fridge with a weight of 42 bricks on his back.

My Charity Ambitions were/are Genuine

I was delighted to hear on the news this morning that Premier League footballer Wilfrid Zaha gives 10% of his money to charity, after fellow professional Juan Mata had called on his colleagues to give 1%.

The news story I saw showed Mimi leaving with a big bag full of coffee sachets, and she is still doing well. I hope she achieves her current ambition and many more.

My running lost me most of my muscles and bulk, but improved my breathing and health. A decade ago I ran my first marathon without taking the asthma inhaler beforehand, and also while camping in a tent in the Arctic Circle for a week before and after it. My ‘day-job company’ thankfully gave me £500 for the Jane Tomlinson charity, showing how the ‘corporate world’ can be much more generous than the ‘counterculture’, which is often very individually greedy and selfish, sometimes due to the poverty of living freely, although not-for-profits can be good and beneficial when run well, and not for the high salaries of the organisers!

Sorry if this blog post looks like I’ve got a cross/chip on my shoulder, and thanks to all those who supported me in my running years, and those who support the events! I’d like to join you, but don’t think I’m a ‘nice’ enough person; not in still-classist/reverse-sexist/reverse-racist modern Blighty anyway!!

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Marc Latham’s books are available on Amazon.

greenYgrey Mistake

If I made a mistake in naming Great Britain (Blighty) a ‘Great greenYgrey island’, in answer to Bill Bryson’s ‘small island’ book title, it was that I underestimated how greenYgrey Great the rest of the world is, therefore making the description unspecific. Therefore, as I am only the original self-titled coffilosopher, rather than the original coffilosopher, or probably the best, either in coffilosophy creation or coffee consumption (I have since naming myself such read Patti Smith’s M Nights memoir, and she’s a real coffee connoisseur, as well as legendary musician and award-winning writer (I must unfortunately add that I thought my XaW Files: Beyond Humanity is better than M Nights!: for concept, writing and philosophy, although her life story is more interesting and accomplished!!), I think of Britain as Original greenYgrey rather than Great or Greatest.

I was reminded of that thought this morning when I saw the Microsoft screensaver from Luoping, China, and followed it up to find fourteen more great greenYgreys filling the screen. So I made a screensave, and it is presented below. I was lucky to visit south-west China in early 1991, as some parts were opening up to the world, and the limestone stacks around Guilin and Yangshuo is one of my favourite landscapes I’ve seen; I was reminded of it on east coast of Yorkshire this year, initially inspired to visit by the birdlife from Bempton to Bridlington. Here’s the screensave:

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Sweet Photo of Crete (Guns N’ Roses Song Wordplay)

As I wrote the headline to this blog the warm autumn sun broke through cloud, entering my writing room, which is the only one I have, Dark Side of the Moon built up ten minutes in, and the coffilosophy brews as I just started my second mug, pouring out into this opening paragraph of new words, and Sweet Child O’ Mine inspired the title.

Lone Crete Photo Reflects Worker-Traveller Ethos

I only took one photo in my three months on Crete; or to be more correct, I didn’t take any, but had one taken of me; it was that kind of place and experience, mostly about work and drinking, experiencing day-to-day humanity in a true Beat kind of way. Me keeping a diary was the height of culture most of the time, but there were a lot of spoken gems, and comedy classics.

The photo was taken about a month after arrival, and I look like a typical worker-traveller in it, scruffy and bedraggled, unfit and under-nourished, looking to me like a Wild West cowboy out on the range – which was the kind of image I had at the time.

The woman was a sweet pretty fellow worker-traveller. Her face is hidden for her benefit, as I don’t know her circumstances, and if she’d want her appearance here.

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‘Beyond Humanity’ Third Dimension of a Trilogy Third Book Subtitle: Space 3 One Too (1-2)

In recent blog posts I’ve written that the ‘Beyond Humanity’ subtitle to XaW Files, my seventh published book, and third of the new self-proclaimed genius (self-parody) but ignored by British society and hence the world (not parody: a la Turing and Tesla being largely ignored in their lives [double link to my previous blog about my genius on the greeenYgrey3 blog, and current Tesla car company CEO and recent blog post star Elon Musk in one sentence!] ) concept of fantasy travelling by web maps and information, inspired by my world travels over thirty years, had a social side (beyond modern history culture) and personal side (me beyond politics and monotonous bickering, tit-for-tat political decisions by each government keeping the status quo rather than progressing society).

3rd Dimension of a Trilogy 3rd Book Subtitle

The third side of the trilogy subtitle is that of the cover star, the sun, and the protagonist, the greenYgrey, which are both beyond humanity in space.

greenygreyImage result for northern lights images

The greenYgrey exited into space in the last episode of XaW Files, which also contained this very a-musing piece of philosophy, that as I remember entered my mind late in the day, rather than at a time of coffilosophy (like now!), after hearing of the I.S. destruction of old pagan temples such as Palmyra, and the beheading of a local who tried to defend them, as well as the genocide of the Yazidis:

‘I.S. destroys humans and their temples because they only have human powers themselves. They will never reach the sun and moon, and other stars and planets, which are the only constructions that really matter to life on Earth, and our planet itself. The universe began billions of years before their sect, and life on Earth millions; and they will live for millions and billions of years afterwards too. The sun and moon will always rise and set, and the stars will always sparkle at night.’

I.S. seemed in the ascendency then, but have since crumbled in Iraq and much of Syria, although others like them are still a threat in the region and elsewhere in the world.

The sun is not totally beyond humanity, as we can see and study it, and we’re supposed to be sending a probe to the sun’s outer corona next year.

Digital model of a spacecraft with a bus attached to a larger Sun-shield. Two small solar panels are attached to the side of the bus, along with four rear-facing antennas.

However, the sun’s beyond our control or destruction, unlike our planet. That fact seems to anger some humans: those who think humanity should be all powerful; often those who think they are God’s chosen creation, creating God’s image in their own, replacing the sun and other deities.

Humanity Fights for Locality, not God or Existence

I don’t know if the sun has any spirituality, but I do know it’s our star, creating life on Earth, which orbits it, and it is more visible in space than our planet, which is itself beautiful; our planet in space is more colourful than the sun, but not as important, maybe like a ring compared to a watch.

The trilogy of our place in the known universe is even bigger and better than my greenYgrey one (self-parody!):

  1. We are in a solar system, one planet circling our star:

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2. Our sun is one of billions in the Milky Way (named by us! Chocolate named after it!!):

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3. The Milky Way is one galaxy of billions in the known universe:

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While holy fighters such as I.S. and the Taliban think they are dying for some great cause that is much bigger than themselves or humanity, or at least 72 virgins in paradise, in reality they are usually just evidence of the human brain shrunk to its minimum philosophical thinking level by brainwashing.

While that could be said to be true of most societies and cultures, and ideological indoctrination, most have more freedom of information and choice; with Islamist brainwashing starting straight away with their superiority asserted through bestselling in their cultures atrocity videos; and therefore opportunity for the human brain to develop, analyse and choose.

British Society and Culture

Admittedly, the choice for most people is limited, and most choose their local ideology, either because they believe in it, or it’s the easiest way to live. I’m not against locality or the military, just against brainwashing and mindlessness. While in my youth I looked for a utopia, in my middle-age I’m just trying to avoid dystopia.

I don’t know if that’s just the normal way it works, and the country doesn’t look as bad to youth as it does to me, or better or worse than the country did to me when I was a youth!? Ironically, youth are said to be the ones wanting more openness and immigration, but they seem the ones most at risk, from grooming and gang violence; as well as losing their country and environment.

Or is it that more of the youth don’t feel that risk, because they feel out of harm’s way in the more politically active higher classes; or they are willing to take that risk, because they feel the positives outweigh the negatives: freedom over safety, drugs over domesticity.

The difference in ages probably is a factor, with youth having more energy, and desire to move and wander, while older people are more settled and defensive of their property. I remember being the former and not really understanding the latter, but now I’m older and feel in the greenYgrey middle I think I’m perfectly positioned to know it all!

Kazuo Ishiguro Nobel Prize Literature Mistake Agreement Parody

Kazuo Ishiguro won the Nobel Prize for Literature yesterday, and humbly said he thought it was a mistake.
I thought it was a mistake too, as I was sure it was my year!

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Self-Parody Explanation

I thought about including this explanation before, or a self-parody warning, but thought I’d tell the joke first, as it would otherwise spoil it. I didn’t really think I was in with a chance of winning it… but do think I’m capable of deserving it, even if I don’t now.

I made that point in XaW Files (8:15), when adding to Richard Flanagan’s thoughts on how writing empties you in an Imagine documentary, after he’d won the Man Booker Prize; he’d said there was no why, there just was:

Moreover, I have also felt the same as Flanagan: that each book written and published, or even poem or philosophical thought, diminishes you.
With the benefit of time, I think the reason I think that is that the writer is sharing themselves with the world, so that their thoughts and experiences are not all theirs anymore; your mind life is scattered all over the pages and world. This can be good and bad for your psyche and soul, hypothetically, releasing negativity and sharing positivity.
Our books from life experience are also material evidence of time elapsed. We can write a limited amount from personal experience in our finite time. Each book tells the story of a part of our lives that has passed. It has been lived and written.
In childhood and youth we look forward, with our minds and lives to fill with experiences, knowledge and memories. Writing about them is evidence that some have been found and achieved. However, it also shows that your life is not as full as it once was. You have already lived some of your life, and the hard evidence is on your written page; unavoidable evidence that your time in this life has diminished.’

Funnily enough, a quote featured in the FundsForWriters newsletter this week has a similar theme:
Only to the extent that we expose ourselves over and over to annihilation can that which is indestructible be found in us.
~American Tibetan Buddhist nun and teacher Pema Chödrön

Parody and Satire Critical Theory High Cost Writing

I think critical writing can be the most costly, and especially self-analysis, self-parody and self-satire; as I try to do, in part so I think I am justified in criticising, parodying and satirising others.

I thought about writing freely that I thought there was a second mistake when they said Kazuo Ishiguro is an Englishman, but now only write it as an example of how I think it is beyond the political correctness line.

Japanese and Jewish (I’m not Either! – self-parody exclamation!!)

As the U.K. left make the ‘racist’ mistake of thinking they can say what they want about Jewish people (not that I’m Jewish!) because they are stereotypically whitish and westernish, the Japanese might seem similarly open to ‘free’ parody, but I know differently.

I know that my parody probably makes it even more unlikely that I won’t win any awards, or get a big publishing deal, but I continue to do it, because it’s what I want to write, and would rather write freely and poorly than censored and richly.

Mainly because I just wanted to, but also to show that I’m not bitter or jealous, except for self-parody comedy reasons seen above, I’ve started reading Ishiguro’s The Buried Giant book. It’s not his most famous work, but it was available, and sounds interesting with a British pagan history timeframe, and a protagonist called Axl (Axl Rose being the lead singer of Guns N’ Roses, the band I named my first book after!).

The Guns N’ Roses Worker-Traveller, XaW Files: Beyond Humanity and my other great coffilosophical (not the first coffilosopher, but the first to name myself such, as far as I know) books are available on Amazon: