Songs for Flower Pot Men

So, Blogging. Let’s give this a shot!

Most are the rules are unknown to me, so I will learn as I go, absorbing and discarding accordingly. If a deluge of #hashtags and cyberlinking are the norm, I will choose to be the odd. If language is usually shortened, neutered or otherwise massacred for the coffee break masses, I’ll sit in the corner and wax lyrical regardless.

So, Blogging. Why give this a shot?

I seem to be reeling recently. Mind on overdrive, wide awake yet struggling to find particular use from it. Perhaps a point of focus is needed. I am due to start writing more lyrics as soon as possible. My melody writing is sailing ahead of me on a sea of la’s, bah’s and fa’s, with nary a lyrical touchstone in sight. Save writing my next album for Bill and Ben, I think I should find some subject matter. And why not try this, an online diary of general shit from my day to day life? Can’t hurt surely?!

And the usual of course; sharing my daily doings and interests with those to whom it may appeal…

Standing on the platform waiting for my train at Liverpool Street Tube station, I was busy watching the chap opposite gluing up the new poster, which informed us all to “Take care on The Underground after drinking alcohol”. Being, as I was, perfectly sober, I dutifully threw caution to the wind and decided to practise my ¬†balancing skills on the train tracks – eyes firmly shut, singing at some volume to the nearby busker and his chirpy accordion version of “Let it Be”.

Or at least I did in my head. Which of course made me chuckle out loud.

Nearby faces looked on concerned. I have been doing this a lot today. I blame Bill Bryson for the most part, having been on a recent reading kick of his older books. At least when a book is in hand, people can explain away solitary laughter. They struggle however when I am simply referencing back in my head to a funny anecdote that rings true of a sudden while wandering the street – or, heaven forbid, creating one of my own in imagination land!

Regardless, I was happy and smiling. Twas a good day.

So happy in fact that for once, instead of riling me, I could observe and get to thinking about the single most annoying aspect of public transport: The train chav.

(For those unaware of the term British term “Chav”: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chav, or other Google sources)

Firstly, and apologies, the rant. Yes, they are everywhere. But only on a train carriage are we stuck in such close proximity to their tinny mobile phone speakers, cheap aftershave and needlessly loud verbal vomit. In a car we are sheltered and are only a gear change and a few revs away from reducing their population (…imagination land again…). On the high street we flit between them and can choose our venues carefully enough to avoid lengthy exposure.¬† But on a train carriage, only noise isolating headphones can save us!

I focused for once on the conversations. It is not difficult at a volume which all but demands we listen anyhow! Not the language as such, although naturally I am not a fan. But primarily the fact the everything, everything, is expressed as grand statement demanding attention.

They don’t simply watch and discuss TV shows. They cry out at heavenly deities about the unbelievable sights they have seen, then dilute any fear of actually cementing an opinion by employing the mandatory rhetorical question to finish.

(Or, put in context – “OH MY GOD, did you SEE Eastenders last night?!?! It was A-maz-ing, wen’it!?”)

Yes. This is a huge matter of with foundations in education, and social and economic issues. Most of which I am hugely unqualified to understand or comment upon, of this I am fully aware. But, for what it is worth, what struck me most listening to these kids was that their views on achievement seem so madly skewed from mine, and it really made me think.

I have been charged as an overachiever and I take no shame in this, always aiming higher. As such I am likely misplaced to understand these kids. But to them, spreading gossip, watching a TV show someone may have missed, getting the new Adidas trainers before their mates, etc, etc, actually count as achievements worth yelling out in public. And they mean it too. It is a little saddening to me but perhaps I am missing something. Perhaps the little wins give them great satisfaction? I like to think everyone wants to achieve in life, perhaps we all put the goalposts in very different places?

Regardless, surely the entire train carriage need not hear of them. Grumble Grumble.

This may have been obvious to many of you, in which case sorry for catching on so late. Unfortunately it only makes me more concerned about the causes, certain things I already loathe about modern culture. Television shows and magazines which promote and idolise talentless celebrities only further the idea that meaningful addition to society is no longer something to celebrate or even aim for, when a fake tan, a vacant stare and a moronic catchphrase seems to net a far greater audience.

This makes me less happy. I started off so well on blog post #1. So it’s back to the reading for me. A few more hours spent with Mr Bryson and I’ll be back on the high again!

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