28 September 2008

One ought...

"One ought, everyday at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and if possible, speak a few reasonable words."
- Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
I try. I really do.

09 September 2008

08 September 2008

Big Brother is watching

And when things are darkest, I look back.

I could never understand why thousands, maybe millions, of people pay good money every summer so they can leave the comfort of home to fight for a couple of square meters of beach or poolside in foreign climes. Once there, they can spend hours basting their bodies with smelly SPF-stupid lotions (to keep away the cancerous lesions) while exposing as much flesh as possible (to avoid unsightly tan lines). When the sun goes down, these same people lubricate their insides with organ numbing concoctions so they can jockey for position on a noisy dance floor with gyrating sweaty strangers who might later agree to share whatever communicable microbes they have managed to collect along the way. And this is called a holiday. For a couple of weeks maybe they can pretend their humdrum lives don’t exist and come away a few hundred pounds lighter in the wallet but fully appreciative of the homes and jobs they thought they had to get away from.

About three years ago I had to give up the day job and, more importantly, the salary that came with it. Holidays (should I ever fall prey to the mystique) are simply unaffordable these days. But even retirement has its moments, and sometimes you just have to get away from it all: away from answering emails, writing blogs, reading a good book and writing that review afterwards; away from remodelling the bathroom, updating your wardrobe, taking a long walk in the countryside; away from having lunch with a friend, painting that masterpiece, completing that novel.

It is at times like this, I can really appreciate a good bout of depression and the accompanying morass of dark feelings that makes me want to crawl into a cave for a week or two. Or thirteen.

Enter Big Brother. Not Big Brother from 1984, the iconic Orwell novel that shaped my philosophy in those tender years, but the tragically compelling reality TV series produced by Channel 4 in connection with Endemol. I am currently finding my way back from the altered state through which I absorbed UK’s ninth summer series, Big Brother 2008 (UK). As part of the weaning process, I will need to write about the experience in the next couple of blogs.

Nothing compels you to read it.