Saturday the 14th

It’s not quite time for my end of year film list (since I have at least one new film left to watch this year) but there have been things I’ve been thinking about writing down for probably a month now and just haven’t so here are some of those things.

  • I read an article about morning routine stories and how the right kind of morning routine is supposed to be able to make you more productive and how recently they’ve kind of morphed into a kind of self-care space and then went on to talk other ideas developing on from that. My weekday morning routine is to wake at 7am, visit the bathroom, fill my water bottle, put out my cereal bar and make a cup of tea that I then take upstairs and put on the bedside table. Then I get right on back into bed and go to sleep until the radio turns on at 7.30am and I find that past-me has kindly made now-me a cup of tea.
    And then like, get ready for work, leave the house, blah blah blah.
  • Still haven’t gotten the crib down from on top of the wardrobe to set it up downstairs for Christmas. Feels like it will be a lot of effort, although it will be the same amount of effort that it is every year and it’s just me that changes. The last couple of months have been kind of vague-feeling and I’ve been studiously ignoring it and buying tickets for things to look forward to instead. One week left until the days start getting longer again, maybe that will help too.
  • The election. Ugh. That’s not helped. I don’t get how people can throw the poor, sick, vulnerable, marginalised etc under the bus and for what? The people I know who’ve voted Conservative are certainly not going to profit from it and just, ugh. So many things. Briefly looked into whether emigrating to Germany or the Netherlands was possible. Considered moving to Scotland. Thought about the religious life again (although that’s a thing I think about on and off and just haven’t ruled out). And being right about what the new government will do doesn’t even have the satisfaction of being able to say “I told you so” because it will be a tragedy. I suppose a Conservative vote is a selfish vote but how does being selfish uplift society? If we don’t help everyone up, even a little bit, then how can we progress and make great new discoveries? I guess I watch too much Star Trek.
  • I basically need a TV channel that is Agatha Christie all the time. All the Marples. David Suchet’s Poirot. Tommy and Tuppence. Just that and nothing else.
  • I’d probably take a bird table livestream too.
  • If the psychiatric hospitals hadn’t been shut down  20-odd years ago, would the mental health of the nation be better now? I don’t know the answer to that, but the resource would be there at least.
  • Of course, I can’t remember most of the things I was thinking about writing down for the last month.

To let the voices be heard

From a friend of mine:

Two days ago, I received a text message from my father. It was a forwarded message that he had received from his friend Mads, a Norwegian doctor currently in Gaza. The message made a very strong impression on me, and after pondering on it a few days I feel I have to share it with as many people as possible. The text message is obviously in Norwegian, but I’ve translated it for you.

“They bombed the central vegetable market in Gaza city two hours ago. 80 injured. 20 killed, everything is coming to Shifa. Hades! We are up to our knees in death. Blood and amputated parts. A lot of children. A pregnant woman. I have never experienced anything this horrible in my life. We are now hearing tanks. Spread the message, forward the message, shout it out. DO SOMETHING! DO MORE! We’re living on the pages of history right now.
Mads G. 3.1.09 13:50 Gaza, Palestine”

He has also been interviewed by CBS, this turned up in my RSS reader today:

Another interview with Mads:§ionid=3510302

I hope you understand why I can not sit here with these messages from my father’s friend and not show everyone. I’m safe and comfortable in my own home, and it’s so easy to close your eyes and ears to what is going on out there. Don’t close your eyes. Read. Watch. Listen. And most importantly – talk about what’s happening. Don’t let it be ignored.

Author’s novel invitation to home

A 93-year-old woman who has had her first novel published has bought a house in Devon so she can help friends stay out of nursing homes.

I think this is awesome. So many old people have problems that could just be solved by them living with family or at least not living on their own – like for the most part being able to look after themselves, but just getting anxious because they live alone.

There should be more of this. Totally.

Number of cinema-goers drops

The number of people going to the cinema in the UK fell for the second consecutive year in 2006, despite an increase in the number of films shown.

…going to the cinema is bloomin’ expensive and there seems to be some surprise that less people are going?

For one adult ticket at my local cinema it’s about £7.50. Now on orange Wednesdays, I bring my mum along and then it’s two for £7.50. Which is tolerable, except I like going to the cinema on my own.

In Birmingham however, one adult ticket is about £3.50 and then with Orange Wednesdays again, it’s two for £3.50. Far more tolerable.

So why is there the huge variation in ticket price? For the cost of one ticket to my local cinema, I could WAIT until the film comes out on DVD and then buy that. It’d probably end up cheaper.


Iran condemns Hollywood war epic

But Iranian culture was strong enough to withstand the assault, Mr Shamaqdari insisted.

“American cultural officials thought they could get mental satisfaction by plundering Iran’s historic past and insulting this civilization,” he said.

“Following the Islamic Revolution in Iran, Hollywood and cultural authorities in the US initiated studies to figure out how to attack Iranian culture.

Apart from the bit where the film is based on a graphic novel right?

Saddam Hussein executed

From the BBC:

Saddam Hussein has been executed by hanging at a secure facility in northern Baghdad for crimes against humanity.

Iraqi TV said the execution took place just before 0600 local time (0300GMT). A representative of the prime minister and a Sunni Muslim cleric were present.


Saddam Hussein was led up onto the gallows platform and a dark piece of cloth placed around his neck, followed by the noose.

When the hangman stepped forward to put the hood over his head, Saddam Hussein made it clear he wanted to die without it.

The hanging itself was not broadcast.
Saddam Hussein’s rule

In pictures
The execution procedure took just a few minutes.

My first reaction is… that it’s all happened very quickly. Usually there are appeals and stuff and it takes ages before someone is executed.

I still don’t feel that execution is the right thing to do, for anyone, even someone like Saddam Hussein who has done so many terrible things.

US President George W Bush hailed the execution as “an important milestone” on the road to building an Iraqi democracy, but warned it would not end the deadly violence there.

I hope it’s not “an important milestone”. The rebuilding of Iraq shouldn’t be based on death and it’s not like his execution is actually going to magically solve the problems there. Argh. I don’t know. I don’t agree with the death penalty, but I don’t know what I would have done instead (well, apart from less of a shambles of a trial, less of a shambles of a war, less of a war). In some ways, I’m glad that I don’t have to make any of these kinds of decisions myself.