Happy Birthday Yourself…


Tomorrow is my birthday. I am soon to be of an age that no respectable lady would mention in a public place. I, though, am no lady. I am a gentle homme of advancing years who hates the cold blast of the Arctic and the even colder draught of my older self. At the moment, I feel as if I am approaching 150 years rather than the 120 that has convinced my old bones that the spurs that I do not wear ought to be hung up for good.   

Old man river, that old man river,

He just keeps repeating himself.


My idea of Hell would be an eternity with a group of half-wits. I would hate their cheery hellos. Their light-touch conversation about putting the washing out, having a trip to M&S, planning a salad from their Jamie cookbook. What is worse than all of this would be to sentenced to eternity with a half-wit who thought that they were something else; like a 51% wit. Those types are dangerous as they believe they know things that have managed to evade the brightest minds on the planet.

“I think the theory of relativity is wrong.”

“I was watching Brian Cox last night and…”

“Hasn’t he got lovely teeth?”

“Yes, I was thinking that. He’ll have had them whitened.”

“I’m getting mine done for the holidays.”

“Where are you going? We’re off to the Dominican.”

“Dominican Republic? Where they have all those tropical storms?

“We’ve never had one when I’ve been there. Where are you going?”

“Not going away this year. We’re having a Jacuzzi put in.”

“Aren’t you special?”

“Rob got it from work. His boss has just bought another one, three time the size. You can get up to twenty people in it a once.”


“I don’t know what make it is, but we’re having it fitted for Christmas. We’re having a shelter with a door.”

“You putting it in the garden?”

“Next to the garage. Bit of a windbreak.”images-506


“Do you think that Brian Cox is attractive?”

“Well, it all depends, doesn’t it?”

“Depends on what?”

“Well, it’s relative isn’t it?”




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This is the story of what happened to me when anxiety took a grip. I lost my senses, I lost my job, and I lost me. I then turned to writing to find those things that had gone missing. How can you teach when you believe that education is a business that is failing in its primary remit of helping to create a better society? Indeed, how can you teach when you believe that you have nothing of value to pass on? The book/blog is the story of my recovery from the absolute darkness of the early days. It is an Odyssey through my life over the last twelve months and a retracing of my steps to discover how I found myself there. More than all of that, it is a re-evaluation and a rejoicing of all that which I call life. Happy reading and I hope it helps. There is madness, Everyday Madness, and not all of it comes from within.

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