Street life

Big foot, captured at last…

Today I saw this project – a collection of fascinating Google Street View scenes, some poignant, some funny, some beautiful, some sad.

And it reminded me that I am immortalised in Google’s remorseless digital memory, like a modern day Big Foot, slinking blurrily off into the wildsGoogle street view image of me walking by

Childish things

This is a photo of me, my grandmother and my friend Manu.

You have to love the child you were, and recognise them in the person you are: Because underneath the constructs of age and experience, that vulnerable, playful, beautiful soul is with you for all your life and will always need love.


It’s a madhouse on the elderly ward, the person I am visiting is cogent so it’s bad for her. Last night an old sparrow of a woman – posh, obviously once beautiful and well to do – wandered over and tried to organise an escape with us. It was fascinating and heartbreaking as she flitted between the here and now and the places and situations of her memory. She offered me a job as her gardener.

I think it’s healthier, curiously, to be confronted by madness and death. There’s a tendency to ignore them, we pretend they don’t exist or touch us, so they lurk like bandits on the road ahead, to leap out and accost us. But they are there, and it is chance or fate that determines whether we are their victim or not.

On the elderly ward everyone sits facing nothing. Ill. Prepared.

Happy new year

Happy New Year! is the hopeful refrain, the mantra we repeat each time the planet revolves around the burning star.  This past year has been instructive, but generally very difficult for me, but I have learned at least something worth taking on into the next year.

It is extraordinary (but mundane, of course, really) that a decade has come to an end.  This time last decade (1999) I was painted silver, (unwisely using car paint) and sporting papier mache angel wings, at a friend’s ‘futuristic’ themed house party, surrounded by people I cared about.  I am still friends with a lot of those good people, but sadly some I have lost touch with. In some instances it was fate, in others, my own efforts. So it goes.

Regrets are inevitable in a life filled with decisions, this decade has given me deep regrets, but also great and profound experiences.  I met and connected with some wonderful people. I know that I made the wrong decisions in some instances, but I could not have done otherwise.  Hindsight is never there when you need it, by definition.

I fell in love and I fucked it up, I worked hard doing things I believed in, tried to do some good. Had some seriously close shaves.  Realised that I had a lot of things that had happened to me in my life that I hadn’t ever sorted out. Took steps to sort them out. I gave up smoking.  Learned to like food.  Got fatter.  Got fitter.  Played some music. Essentially, lots of things happened. good and bad.

With the year ahead I hope to make better choices, I hope to be happier, I hope.  That is what we do.

Happy new year! I hope that it is a good one for you.


Snow flake

snow flakes on windowIt is snowing.

A downy grey sky of feather fall.

Heavy in my viscera, memory:

She, rowing opposite me, across
the London skyline.

Upon soft water,  swans.

How happy, how loved. How
could it be
that I erased the slim lines of hope from the page?

Choosing instead
the blankness.

The blankness.

The snow erases the worn lines of the world.

I didn’t know that

Random facts gleaned from here and there:

  • One of the two brothers who founded the Laphroaig distillery, Donald Johnston, died two days after falling into a vat of partially made Whisky.
  • Stewardesses is the longest English word you can type with your left hand only, Lollipops the longest with solely your right.
  • The male Duck Billed Platypus has a venomous spur on its hind leg
  • The Human body on average contains ten trillion cells. In those ten trillion cells, there are seventy five trillion foreign cells. Yes that’s seven and a half times more cells of different creatures living in or on you right now. So how can you call yourself you? (from Weirdimals)
  • Albert Einstein’s last words were lost to posterity as the night nurse attending him did not speak German (from Time magazine, 1955)




One such summer I

sun of nothing

took your hand in mine


upon the smoothed pebbles


down to the sea


and we slipped



Shedding our clothes

our accumulated selves

I loved you

I loved you

That I

was free

Like blood from a vein

Flowing, pulsing with life

and inevitably