7. Yesterday – a good day!

Well, as Albert Einstein used to say – everything is relative!

Albert in one of his mad-bad moments

Is it me, or do we all go through these phases? Once I thought that the Universe was simply there or maybe it was figment of my human imagination, so it wasn’t. Either way, it’s there or it’s not (black or white; on – off, zero – one etc). Now, as I find I begin to understand Stephen Hawking’s books a little better, actually life just ain’t that simple!

Hawking Universe in a nut shell
One of my favourite Hawking books

Do you know that there may be Multi-verses not one Uni-verse? Now before I break into a poem, I’d reiterate I have changed my mind a lot, and learnt that the Uni-/Muliti verse is also to be like everything else – Shades of Gray (not that one, obviously!).

Shades of Gray
Ahum, have you read it?

I buy that now. I wish Elaine did when we get into our usual rows: you know the kind of thing, “I said this”.  No.  “You said that”. No, “I said etc, with the usual ping-pong of contradictions followed closely by, well, “You must be deaf, cause I didn’t say any of that!!”. Why do I say these things (Jonathan Ross)? Because, as life becomes more complicated, nuanced and well, all those marvellous grays, it also becomes more difficult but truly wonderful, of course.

Now here is an example of the sort of dilemma that ‘gray’ paints. My wonderful sister-in-law relative, Jacqueline, pointed out that my Rugby Blog entry yesterday didn’t contain much for the ‘ladies’, and I whiffed a hint of my chauvinism. Could she have a little more storyline plus a picture of Dan Carter, please?  What do I do?

Yes, and I could get some brownie points from her!  No, and I lose some that I don’t even have yet (I’m neither a debtor nor a saver). But, if I include this request will everyone else start piling in with their favourite player or eye-candy (did I say that?) requests. No win!

Now, I know where my bread is buttered so, here in black and white (and pink all over) is yours truly, Dan Carter.

Rugby Addendum – for you, Jacqueline

Moving on. Yesterday was indeed a good day- relatively, of course! So, how?  First, I managed not only Readybrek with warm milk for breakfast but had an additional shot of Weetabix, my new clinical trial nutritional supplement (you do remember Blog entry 5, don’t ya?). I sprinkled the crumbled biscuit over the porridge a couple of times, with my eyes closed – so it is definitely meeting the protocol conditions for a randomised double-blind study (Medical Research Council (MRC), “Guidelines for Good Clinical Practice in Clinical Trials.” (1998). I’ll brief you further if I notice marked improvements in my eating, and more importantly, excreting habits!

[And, is this good enough? Well yes, until we have something better, or are able to stop being smug in thinking we already have the answer.  Or at least Fiona Albridge (2015) thinks so since listening to “Realising Impact: Making a difference through adult learning” by speaker, Tim Harford (from BBC Radio 4’s “More or Less” and author of “The Undercover Economist”) presented at the European Agenda for Adult Learning Conference, 11 Sep 2015. Her article, “Are randomised control trials into learning the answer?”, reported on the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education( NIACE) web site (http://www.niace.org.uk/.  Accessed 26 November 2015).]

This is important stuff. We cancer patients suffer from constipation and diarrhoea, sickness and nausea, fullness and emptiness, pain and ecstasy (after the morphine, anyway); highs and lows; misery and joy. Hey, am I wrong here, but isn’t this a little dichotomous? Can’t be right, can it? The world is wonderfully gray, surely?

Second, let me tell you, when you have experienced the gripping pains of constipation for 5 days straight (last Friday) then getting to Wednesday (4 days straight), but still no number two visitor, that is relative ecstasy! Getting worried however this morning. I still have to pass muster and it’s getting closer to 5 days again!

Did I tell you I liked music? Yes, just about every genre, though my rank preferences are Blues> Rock> Jazz> > Country Rock> Country > Pop > Classical. I appreciate this is an arbitrary classification.  Since I was listening, with great pleasure, to Joe Jackson play, “It’s different for girls” (I guess it is?), last night, where does he fit in my line up?

Joe Jackson1
Joe in the 1980s

Anyway, the funniest thing I encountered in the 1970s was the satirical, “Spitting Image” puppet show. You know the one, very famous for a one liner. Margaret Thatcher takes the cabinet out to dinner and the waitress asks for her order. “Steak: raw, please”, she replies. “What about the vegetables?” says the waitress? Oh, give them the same as me, she retorts!

Spitting image_Vegetables
Spittting Image portrayal of Maggie Thatcher and her cabinet colleagues out to dinner

Also, linking this to music. I have been a big fan of both Dire Straits and Chris Rea since the mid-late 70s and onwards.

Dire Straits 1978
Chris Rea 2005-ish

A “Spitting Image” spoof of the new band “DireRea” was a fantastic interlude during one of the episodes. So, tomorrow let’s hope I can talk a little more freely about diarrhoea!

By the way, if you have never heard Chris Rea playing the stuff he likes, blues, then take a listen to the 11 CD and 1 DVD box set, “Blue Guitars”. This traces the history of the blues from its roots in Africa to America via the slave trade; from the Southern states of the USA to its chillier Northern ones, thence to the UK (John Mayall, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page, Peter Green, Mick Taylor, The Stones, Beatles etc) and back again to America, but also taking in Celtic and Mediterranean influences along the way.  An amazing piece of music. Chris wrote all the songs (137 whittled down from about 350), penned during his own life-threatening illness.

Chris Rea Blue Guitars
Blue Guitars (2005)

So, that’s it for today folks, I’m off for a walk and post a letter. Tomorrow might get a little technical again, but hey a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do.

Bye, ‘til then.

















2 thoughts on “7. Yesterday – a good day!

  1. Thanks for the lovely “pink” rugby addendum, Colin. I feel better (and younger) already! So glad to hear that your breakfasts are getting more interesting! Keep up the great work. J X


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