Monday, 22 September 2008

A Fair Culmination of the Last Week

I have recently discovered the readership of this blog has gone up by 50%. That is to say, where previously I knew of two people who read it, I now know of three. Some smart alec will correct my maths, but it works in my head. But owing to this conversation, I have decided to blog again, after a week of silence, in which various factors such as bitterness, laziness, and Working My Socks Off have halted the progress of the blog machine.

Oh, and a simple apology to Tim, who has probably heard all this, spewed up in the last week in some form. So, sorry.


First of all; an appeal. Not just to anyone, but to those who are ever planning, in some way, shape or form, to ever join together with another human being in holy matrimony/civil partnership/common or garden marriage. It does not matter if you are not currently engaged, nor even in a stable relationship, nor even if you're still playing kiss chase. I don't care. All I ask is this: Please, please, please, for the love of all that is good and holy, and whatever you share a passing interest in, make sure your wedding invitations are unequivocally clear, and have not even a sniff of ambiguity about them as regards whether that person is invited to wedding/reception/after-party. Please. That is all.


Staying with the theme of weddings; as various people have got married throughout the summer, the feeling has slowly overtaken me of being left behind. While this is horribly introspective and narcissistic of me, and I do share joy with those who have got married (just probably not as much), I seem to have this pervading sense of still being 14, while others have raced away into the big bad world of Adulthood. Some may argue that this is a good thing to hang on; a child-like, (more -ish, if you ask me...) nature being something to aspire to. But it does feel like the maturity quota has left me a little short. I'm not sure I'm making my point, so I think I'll just finish this here.


And to end on the most disturbing thought of all: Jesus has become a nice theological truism. And this is a critique of no-one but me. I was reading through the gospel of Matthew, and compared the Jesus I found in those pages to the Jesus I thought I knew. Somewhere, somehow, 'my Jesus' had become an excuse for my shortcomings, in that I knew 'my Jesus' would forgive me were I to say to sorry and repent. But the Jesus I found in the gospel was one who asked difficult, awkward, frustrating things and demands a life of repentance. Oh, to live in that truth. Help me.

Friday, 12 September 2008

African Goings On

Mugabe and Tsvangarai have agreed to share power. I am not sure how this will work out in practice, as they oppose each other on so many issues. I also wonder who compromised. Is Mugabe softening, or has Tsvangarai lessened his democratic aims by 'power-sharing'? The deal means that Mugabe remains president, and has control of the armed forces, while Tsvangarai becomes prime minister, in charge of the police force. I seriously hope, for the health of the nation, these two major forces do not cross paths, and they are used to the correct ends.


Jacob Zuma has been cleared of any fraudulent misconduct, allowing him the right to become President. As previously mentioned on this blog, no South African I have spoken to (although it must be noted that they are mostly caucasian middle class South Africans) has a positive opinion of Mr Zuma. His comments regarding HIV/Aids a few years ago show a distinct lack of common sense. In the last three years, he has been accused in three separate court cases, all three collapsing for various reasons. I am not a South African, but I do have various ties with the country. If I were to have a vote, I am sure I would not want this man in charge. He does not fill me with confidence, nor seem to show the ability to lead a country such as South Africa, a country hanging in the balance between the West, and Africa - so delicate a culture that a man with a large clunking fist and a lack of forethought could ruin the good work of the past.

Thursday, 11 September 2008


Again, a piece on home. I am home. For two weeks. And then I depart to live in Northwood at college. Although, from my viewpoint, that doesn't feel as much of a departure as say, going on holiday, or something of the like. In fact, only in writing this, has the impending nature of college really struck me. What do I feel? A little apprehensive, but mostly excited. I shall be leaving this bedroom for ten weeks at a time... I begin the slow, grasping, slightly painful and weepy process of Properly Moving Out. I suppose this links to my previous post, but I'm suddenly more aware of the world - like someone has turned the focus, and the world beyond myself and the next year looms large.

As NFG once wisely said:

'Why would anybody want to the leave the safety of their homes?'

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Moab is certainly not my washpot, more's the pity...

To be as fluent, eloquent, or even as pretty as that Fry man, would be a great delight to me. I am currently reading his autobiography, and it is the most enjoyable work of self I have ever come across. His story-telling and turn of phrase are second to none. And the reason why I wish I had his same skill with the written word is because my simple, if coherent and concise, writing style, do no justice to my best friend, nor to the feelings or experiences of the last hour, let alone week.


I can't get away from the fact I'm an arse. I'm an arse with two legs and a torso, and a few other features we shan't mention here, such as arms and a head, but essentially, an arse. I am twenty. Soon to be twenty-one. I often joke that I do not look twenty without a beard, however, it would be more true to say I do not feel twenty, irrespective of facial hair. I still feel like a child, and while there are advantages to be had seeing the world through these childish eyes, there are also considerable cons, such as being scared witless by everything and anything.
I say everything and anything. It is a wide, sweeping generalisation that I cannot provide any solid evidence for. But it is also how I feel, that horrible crutch of feelings and emotion in a time desirous of something more tangible. For instance, the feeling, as I pathetically tried to describe to Tash earlier, of wanting to run away from anything that may potentially, perhaps, one day there could be a chance, vaguely optimistically, may in fact look like it could ever be serious. Now, the obvious leap here is to relationships, and while I do not deny this apparent fear affects such circumstances, it would also seem that the rest of my life is tarred by the same brush. Again, 'the rest of my life' is a huge, rather complex issue, and not one to be swept aside with a simple cliché. Take, for an example, work. When I talk of work, I don't merely mean the menial tasks which I perform to gain a part-time salary, but of the Real World, the big 'Out There', the After You've Finished type of work. What would I like to do, I hear you cry in unison? Well, to be honest, I would love to do doss work in a church. Who wouldn't? And the moment someone has the audacity to remind me of the preparing, the preaching, the pastoring - I want to bolt.
I sincerely hope that in the next year, I grow up a bit. That would be nice. Less arseing about. Less fear. Less trying to sound like Stephen Fry, however long it might take me to write out a few paragraphs. (30 minutes, incidentally. Just in case you were wondering.) Less me. More God. Amen.