Tuesday, 29 July 2008


Reading through the camp handbook, and realising that said thing is only four days away, an odd notion has struck me. I'm actually scared. Before, in the lead up to camp, I can only remember being excited, and perhaps a bit nervous. But never before actually scared. I don't this one jot.

Saturday, 26 July 2008


Two friends of mine, Phil & Monique, have recently had their first child, Emily. Emily is thirteen weeks old, utterly adorable, and I love her dearly. As Phil works at the church, Emily is growing up in an environment that has a significant proportion of older ladies, desperate to impart their wisdom. Some do so in a subtle way, offering help where needed, and backing off when it's not. Others think things, but do not say anything, out of politeness. And others (the most annoying kind), broadcast opinions to all and sundry, as long as Phil or Monique are not around.

Baby Emily gets to sleep best in Mummy or Daddy's arms, as one would expect. As today was a hot day, they didn't want to carry her around too much, as a burnt baby is not a happy baby. However, putting her in her pram to get her off to sleep doesn't work too well. When one of the older ladies asked why they carried her around so much, I explained it's easier for her to get to sleep. The conversation followed a route of suggesting that they were 'over-parenting', and should try to get her used to going to sleep in the pram, etc., etc..

Now, this is all well and good, as it is sound advice, but my current thoughts on parenthood (and I'm sure they shall continue into actual parenthood), are that it's an adventure. You discover things that do, and do not work. What works for one baby may not work for another. I'm all for advice and information from those who have been through the whole process, but at the end of the day, I will be the parent, and not them.

I do not see the problem with lavishing love and attention on a baby of 13 weeks. Weaning them into an independent state is just ridiculous at such an early stage. Phil and Monique absolutely adore Emily, and are doing an admirable job as parents thus far. But I think it is only acceptable that they are allowed to make mistakes and discover the reality of having a baby for themselves, and not be told step by step instructions by those that assume they know better.

Monday, 21 July 2008

More on that forgiveness lark...

Up to page 32. Not the most easy read ever. The paragraph I just read ended on a stark note: 'Could forgiveness be effective, or even thinkable, in the midst of Nazi Germany?'

Naturally, the answer is assumed to be 'No,' simply because of the nature of Germany of that time. But Bonhoeffer preached, and tried to live this costly forgiveness. If a man can choose to forgive - up to a point - living in the barbaric state that was the Third Reich, then why do I struggle with it? I think I still misunderstand forgiveness.

And that scares me a little.

Saturday, 19 July 2008

Hotel Rwanda

This film is probably one of the saddest films I have watched for a while - it's on a par with Schindler's List for emotion, the decrepit nature of humanity, and heroism. The two things that struck me most was the absolute hatred stirred up against the Tutsi people, and the world standing by as it happened. Everything seemed like it was very much swept under the rug - why was there no intervention to stop over a million people being killed? What scares me most is the volatile nature of things in other African countries, Kenya and Zimbabwe in particular, where although not ostensibly racial, things are disturbing violent. We can only pray that these atrocities will never happen again, and that this time, we will do something to halt the disturbing slide into genocide before it is too late.

Friday, 18 July 2008

The Cost Of Forgiveness

As my project next year is based on forgiveness, I realised I would have to get my teeth into some slightly deeper book on the subject, and this morning started reading properly L. Gregory Jones' 'Embodying Forgiveness'. I'm forcing myself to think upon the subject, to further engage with it, and writing it down seemed as good a way as any.

We know there is a cost to forgiveness. It offers up our dignity. In some ways, we also lose our victimhood. Once we forgive, we are the victor, not the victim. And yet, it takes great humility to forgive. So why do we do it? For the Christian, the stock answer would be that Christ preaches it. But what about the rest of the world? Why do they forgive? Do they forgive? What is it about forgiveness that holds us back from it, and yet, when we do forgive, we wonder why we didn't do it originally?

Struggles and thoughts. Only 9 pages into a 300 page book.

Thursday, 17 July 2008

The Chorus

I just watched this film, at the recommendation of la Tash. So glad I did. The singing is absolutely astonishing. I loved it, despite it being in French. Tash is slowly educating me in the way of indie films. Thus far I've experienced two French films, which is just weird. I thought everything spoke English nowadays...?


Sigur Rós and War & Peace arrived today. I'm letting the Icelandic stuff just happen to me, chronologically, as it were. What I've heard thus far has been amazing. I've also read a bit of War & Peace. I thoroughly underestimated the size of the book. I have a summer to plough through 1350 or so pages. I'm up to 25. Not too far to go now.


I am aware how boring and inverted I am being recently. I have yet to pronounce opinions on any topics in the news recently, which is slightly boring of me. I must work out a system of writing down thoughts I have that doesn't include the back of my hand, because that's one of the most abhorrent things I can think of.


Talking of my hands, I am shocked at the shock of so many people to my having the nails on my left hand painted pink. I'm not aware of it being that bizarre, but I've come across people who seem to be struggling to get over it. I think I'm just keeping it on now to rile people, which is probably the wrong reason. Fun, though.

Monday, 14 July 2008


Has brought with it a spate of buying, mainly due to the fact I have realised I have money. So today, I bought three Sigur Ros albums, War And Peace, and the Bibliophile's Dictionary.

The Sigur Ros albums are just for generally being amazed. War And Peace is again, an attempt to further my horizons, and read some books I wouldn't normally, and the Bibliophile's Dictionary is for Dave, a birthday present which was due in May. My other purchases hopefully will include a digital SLR, a new pair of football boots, and perhaps an iMac. But that may be a little over the top. We shall see.


Ooo, discuss: Is utilising BBC iPlayer when I don't have a TV, and thus don't pay a license fee, immoral?

And when I say 'discuss', I mean... uh, well, only one person will actually reply. But nevermind. I can make believe.

Saturday, 12 July 2008

What I didn't want to do...

...was be the type of blogger who failed to blog regularly. And considering this is my first post in the month of July, I feel like I may have let you down. Whoever you may be. And we probably should lay aside the fact that I haven't had internet connection for the past 10 days. But aside from that, hypothetical reader, I have let you down.


A truly disturbing discovery. I can't type with Scrubs on. I had to wait until the end of the episode for me to be able to start writing this post. I feel slightly disappointed at my brain for being the lack of dual-tasking, let alone multi-tasking. Although, I'm holding high hopes for Sigur Ros being the band that falls outside this viscious circle. New album = awesome.


I have made a decision regarding my future. (Trying reading that in a happy voice, and don't think 'doom-laden.' I had good intentions, really...). I have decided to live in halls next year. There are a few reasons, but I think it would be a better experience for me, all-round. And slightly cheaper, which rarely hurts the decision making process...


Finally, a brief mention of my time spent in the Borders with Tash and Giz. It was fantastic, and amazingly enjoyable. We didn't really do much, but what we did, we had fun. Well, I did. If you are that way inclined, check out the photos I'm slowly putting up on my deviantart. (Just click my profile picture. Technology, eh?)