Wednesday, January 20, 2021


The pathway to sanity has been long and arduous. Here I was thinking I was normal. Tension and anxiety were simply a part of everyday life. Not so, it seems. There are expectations set by those around us we are obliged to note, admire, aspire towards, achieve and bequeath to those that we also surround. In its simplest form, these aspirations include good health, social contact and mental stability. As Kishan puts it: Physiology, Psychology, Sociology; the guides to good health. Those who advocate this persona usually have a strong jaw, lots of hair, have a connection with their god and drive a very expensive car. Oh, yes. They are more than likely from California, USA. Personally, I prefer the Moscow mafia. 

The key connection to all of these people is they have a way of making you feel uncomfortable in your own skin, not unlike wearing woolly trousers without jocks.

How often have you greeted someone with “how are you?” Or simply put: ‘are you OK?’ A response in regard to the physical and physiological well being is expected,  even if it will only be of consideration if the answer is: “I’ve been poorly” or some such refinement. Even the standard response of “I’m OK “ gets a peculiar look of disbelief and a questioning: “Really? You look like shit”.

No one is really OK.

And you haven’t even mentioned your mental state, which is probably considering murder at this point. That’s a no-go area in any conversation. Loonies, psychos, anyone suffering from any sort of -pathy, druggos, and the rest of the mental cases are not the sort of person others feel comfortable talking to. 

This will lead to a warranted conversation relating to recent illnesses, operations, medication, healing and lingering. Some exchange and debate will follow, and often includes the comparative intensity of pain, possible cures, alternative medication and the name of a better doctor. 

A ‘better’ doctor has been advised to me. It seems the existing one, Kishan, the Buddhist from Sri Lanka, has finally run out of ideas. Either that or he’s sick and tired of experimenting with my well being. 

“I think you should see a psychiatrist, ” he added as he looked at his watch, fiddled with his pen and gave me that look he might give his teenage daughter when she asks for some cash or a sleepover with her boyfriend.

Finding a shrink in Darwin is akin to finding an extra finger on my left hand. Nevertheless, I did find one within walking distance of home. How convenient, I thought. Perhaps she does house calls.

I called the number.

“How much? That much? What about for an old pensioner? Fuck, lady. That’s more than I’d pay for a weekend away with the woman of choice. I’ll dwell on it,” and I hung up, as hard as one can on a mobile phone. I mumbled to myself for a few minutes, rang back, apologised for my manner and booked an hour somewhere into next month. Chances are I’ll have topped myself before then and will avoid the pain of the psychiatrist's bill, all $1500 of it. 

She better be good or I’ll bleed all over her carpet or throw myself in front of her white Mercedes. 

By the time the appointment came around, I was feeling ok. Should I cancel? Under advisement from Christine and Kishan (he’s Buddhist, Sinhalese, Type A, doctor/mate/confidant I pay to talk to) I appeared in the waiting room of doctor Caroline,  carrying as intense a look as I could muster. Not much point turning up full of good spirit and positivity. She’d have nothing to do for all that cash I was parting with.

We passed the first 40 minutes establishing who I was and what I had done. I did think it might be worth spending more time since interest in myself exceeds that of anyone else. I was aware of the meter ticking. I talked quickly, refrained from elaborating, kept the jokes and sarcasm to a minimum, and declined from telling her how to do her job. She wrote frantically, only stopping to attain continuity with the story of my life. Try packing your entire existence into 40 minutes. I was beginning to realise that 71 years had passed without more than a ripple. 

I was also beginning to realise where all this was heading. I could predict her next question. I knew answers well in advance of the question. I began to feel like the inquisitor of my own existence. How bored she must be, listening to this. No drama to speak of, no pitfalls, no abuse, no trauma. Just me and whatever I decided to tell her, became ‘me’. I could be whomever I want and she wouldn’t have known one way or the other, which is probably what I wanted. I was losing the plot and she was gaining one, albeit a false and misleading one. 

But who are we beyond what we tell others we are? We have many personas. Each is chosen carefully for the audience. I am the child for my great-granddaughter, the understanding grandfather to my grandchildren, the philosopher to my blog readers, the antagonist to the ignorant, the carer to Christine, the dog hater to the neighbourhood, the man who talks to strangers. Yet I am none of these. I become what I need to be in the presence of others so I might survive. I live a lie.

I tell her this; the doctor with the white Mercedes. She looks me squarely in both eyes, smiles honestly and says the magic words: “We all do that.”

All of a sudden the cost of consultation seems worth it. 

“Then who am I,” I ask. 

“You are the person who does all these things.”

How simple. How profound. How natural. It fits. It always has. What I do, what we all do is what we are. There is nothing to search for. There’s no guiding light or script or road. We are on it already. What we chose to do is what we are. If we seek the truth and not see what we do as the truth then we miss the whole point of existence. Only humans trouble themselves so much over such things. The ant crossing my computer like a daredevil on a tight rope is not bothered by the thought of falling or the idea of being talked about. It is what it is: an ant. We are only marginally removed from the nature of the ant in as much as we have a few more chemicals which determine our physiology. 

“Our time is up,” the doctor with the white Mercedes informs me. How close to the truth she is. I chose not to share any of these thoughts with her, of course. She’s the psychiatrist after all and would only deem me suitable for incarceration or stronger medication. Or charge me more. 

“So what do you think, doc? Any hope for me?”

“I’m advising your doctor to increase your Efelaxine to 225mg/day and you could look at a course of therapy with a psychologist.”

“Do psychologists charge as much as you?”

There is no reaction.

“Did you consider the alternate option of having me incarcerated?”

Still no reaction.

“Is there anything you can tell me I don’t know already?”


There’s that sound again. She’s looking for a way of getting me back so she can have her way with me. 

“At the moment, I’m inclined to conclude you have Bipolar tendencies that might get worse unless treated.

“Is that like a magnet or a water molecule?”

She looks at me with a puzzled grin. 

“It’s ....”

“I know what it is. I’m the one with the weird brain, remember”.

Since I wasn’t getting a laugh from this audience I decided to take my leave after emptying my credit overdraft into her purse. My first thought on reaching sunlight was to enrol in a post-grad degree in psychiatry and psychology. This is not a good sign. One of the characteristics of those suffering from bipolar disorder is to believe they can do everything themselves and to become obsessed with knowing all things.

Here we go again.

I am somewhat relieved from my experience with the psychiatrist who drives a white Mercedes. Firstly, I have less money in the bank. What a relief, I think to myself. No extravagance for me this week. In addition, I’m convinced that normality is a figment of the imagination of many. Like bad behaviour, I just need a slap on the ear and get over it. This  seems reasonable and conclusive but I find that genes, chemicals and a sagging posture fight against every move I make; or don’t make. Knowing what is good for me isn’t a solution. It’s like having a bus ticket to Geelong and not wanting to go there. Who would? 

I’m not sure I want to be cured. Or normal. Or sane. Or human. Or that which others want or expect of me. 


 Landing in Sri Lanka is much like a duck landing on a lake. Water sprays from every moving object. The Sinhalese, inhabitants of this floating jungle east of India, adore water; even worship it. Not without good reason. Most times it’s falling out of the sky in shit loads or they are walking ankle-deep in it. Even when it’s not raining it falls from my skin in sheets. I swear, if I stay here too long I will develop webbing between my toes.

Where ever there is water someone is bound to be fishing. Or swimming. Being a small island the sea is never far away, geographically at least. Travelling to the coast is a challenge, even by those who live nearby. Traffic moves at a snail's pace on all roads; narrow, congested and abused as they are. Few people walk more than a block or two unless they are carrying the shopping, a child or a slurry of building material. The heat is almost unbearable, certainly for a white, ageing tourist such as myself. The roads are congested with ‘tut-tuts’ ( a means of transport resembling a milk crate and sounding like my lawnmower), ageing buses and ancient motorbikes. Travelling 100 km could take all day by any of the aforementioned modes. Then again, there’s always a chance of not arriving at all. In spite of the abundance of Buddhists on the road, with their caring and considerate attitude to all life, there is an ever-increasing number of corpses to be found stuck to the bitumen, slaughtered by an on-coming tut-tut, truck or Toyota. 2700 people had the chance of reincarnation this year because of their miscalculation with fate and traffic. Perhaps it is their inalienable right to reincarnation that discourages any sane approach to road safety.

Our driver/tour guide/chauffeur, a good looking and cheerful soul going by the name of ‘Don’, wants to return as a monk in his next life. He started ‘monking’ when he left school. He fell in love shortly after. She had come to the temple to make a food offering. He spotted her in the crowd and pursued her relentlessly. So romantic. After 15 years of marriage, two children and a taste of western beauty he is less sure it was love and more confident with the idea of lust at first sight. 

Don tells me he doesn’t understand his wife. I reassure him that this is not an unusual situation

Don isn’t his real name. It’s his tourist name; for those who fail to get their tongue or patience around his given name: Surendra. There’s a drum roll with the tongue on the ‘dr’.Surendra appreciates the effort we make to get the pronunciation close.

Surendra laughs out loud, like a child among friends, his white teeth contrast strongly against his glistening brown skin. It’s not so hot today.  Moisture hangs heavily from the blackening sky and deposits a layer of softening dew on his skin. There’s a sparkle in his eyes that allows the stranger in me to connect with him. He speaks a Sri Lankan version of English I find easy to interpret. He listens intently, showing discomfort with my language that is typical of one who has English as a second or third language. I can almost hear him translate in his head as he hastens to catch the words and hold on to them long enough to grasp their true meaning. From time to time he squints, a sure sign that his brain makes no sense of the translation he has rendered and shaped in his head. Today he just stares in disbelief at what I have just said. I enjoy challenging him.

In spite of this struggle with words, we manage to communicate with a great deal of ease. I’m surprised at the quality of his thoughts. His understanding of his culture is born from a deep belief that what he is, is what he thinks of his country’s history, religion and culture. 

Yet I crave to know more, beyond his countryman. What of the man who stands before me? What lays beneath the surface? What life has he lived? What has made this young man what he is now?

Surendra has exposed small fragments of his ‘other’ life; the one I choose to know of. The voyeur in me looks hard. I listen for signs of life beneath the tour guide exterior. His mind is like warm wax and his personal thoughts stick firmly as the dust from a long day. From time to time I ask: “what of your family?”, “What of your youth?” and Surendra brushes the dust from the wax ever so slightly. I can smell and taste the thoughts and my appetite is stimulated. I ask myself: What will bring him to raise the broom and loosen the secrets that I crave and he holds so dearly. 

“Tell me of your courtship? How did you meet your wife?.”

He draws in the warm air and seemingly gathers his strength. I make no sound. I must listen. I fear to breathe, least I will shatter the silence he needs. I let him speak without interruption, holding still, letting each word settle. If I am still, perhaps he will not notice my presence. This experience is new to him. He has yet to speak openly of his life, but there is pain that comes with it. He must conquer the pain. No, he must ride with it, as the bird on the wind. He is learning that the anguish is part of him and he must live with it, not fight it, but know it and know it’s placed in his life. His memories of painful times and events are no different to the scars on his lustrous skin or the rounded belly he carries as a consequence of his indulgences. 

Slowly, methodically, carefully, Surendra places his fears where they are safe and speaks more freely of his past. His eyes give way to the yearning to weep for losses and suffering. Moisture gathers and blood rises to the surface as the soft pain in his head pushes his thoughts forward. His moistened eyes look away from me momentarily. He speaks to the warm, thick air. None of this comes naturally. 

Converting thoughts to words isn’t something that any of us can do easily. We fear too much. We fear the permanency that comes with being heard, the misunderstanding that others might gather, the ‘truth’ that some might deny, the ‘lies’ that others might perceive. Surendra’s fears are ‘real’ but often unfounded. He must learn that the thoughts of others are not his responsibility. He can only be in control of his own dread; that which once held him silent in the presence of others. The pain of others is beyond him, out of his reach, out of his field of knowing, distant to any responsibility he feels he must own.

Surendra tells me of his life, at least the parts he is willing to share just now. It is early days. I should not expect too much from him. He is young and still to know the freedom that comes with age. He is yet to know that smart men know of others, wise men know of themself. He will see how his memories grow old with him. They soften as the wax in the summer sun, they change as the dust of years settles and sinks into the softening and malleable wax. The memories will become new, in the ages of time. They will still bring feelings with them but less of the pain and more of the simple joy of living. 

For there is no destiny that holds Surendra to a particular path. His life has not been written beforehand. He is not scripted to perform like a monkey on a chain. His is the creator of his own experiences. Each new event is the consequence of what has gone before. Where he is now is the best possible outcome of all that has gone before. The yin and yan of life give both: rich with poor, sick with good health, friendship with enemies, love with hate, good with bad, happiness with sadness. Surendra is learning to live with both sides of the token of life. He cannot hold the wax solid in the sun. Nor can he see the dust settle and stick. He will live with his truth. And just as we face life, he will face death; his own and that of others, because life and death are sides of the same coin.

As he faces his life, so will he see in his wisdom, that there is no pain that cannot be accompanied by the joy of living. 

Perhaps pain and joy are the same things. Surendra and I are still learning to see how that is so for both of us. For a while, we follow the same path. For a while, we are connected.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

How sure are you?

How sure are you?

Step in front of a fast moving train and there’s a more than fair chance you’ll not survive to tell the story of why you were dumb enough to step that way.
In fact, if you suggested such I thing to a friend, they’d consider any anticipation  on your part they might survive with some measure of scepticism. And who could blame them?

There seems to be some things we can always rely on: the Sun rising and setting, taxes, death at some point, rising prices, and the applications of Murphy’s Law to name a few.

But there are some things we can’t guarantee. Conception, for example. In spite of the effort we put into achieving fertilisation of ova with sperm and the disproportionate amount of sperm cells the male delivers to the ova, it’s still a bit of hit and miss. 

Increasing the chances of a version of a particular event occurring is often sought. In the case of conception the male might gain access more than once, the female might secure the sperm in a number of ways, an appropriate time is chosen for delivery of the semen, or, in the case of reducing the risk, a prophylactic might be used. Among some, a wish, hope or prayer might be employed either way, fertilisation under supervision is now a thing, and, as always the exuberant youths will always keep their fingers crossed instead of their legs.

All this assures us of only one thing: nothing is certain in love and war.

Mathematically, chance can be calculated, sometimes with a great deal of precision, which does seem a contradiction in principles. For example, according to motor vehicle statistics, there is a one in four chance of a motor cyclist between the ages of 18 and 25 of having a significant accident in any one year. The insurance companies and regulators use such figures to make rules and laws in an effort to reduce the probability of a payout or death.

Making a prediction on anything is prone to dispute if not done efficiently. With the kind assistance of Thomas Bayes the task has been made simpler with his rather sobering yet utilitarian Theorem stated thus:


For those who recognise it, they will also be familiar with its importance in all sorts of things including current predictions on climate change and stock market evaluations to name just two. For those who are baffled, fear not. You’ll still loose on the pokies just the same.

In spite of some knowledge on probability and it’s determination there are a number of things that puzzle me about chance and predictions that few will admit to understanding and none have explained to me in a satisfactory manner.

 Let’s say there’s a more than fair chance it might rain tomorrow. I dress accordingly, venture out, and return as dry as I left. Not a drop of rain fell. What happened? How wrong could the weather man be, and how inconvenient?
When I was told by the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) I was assured there would be an 80% chance of rain. The result of the days precipitation was that there was none. What BOM should have said was there would be no rain where I anticipate walking.
Then, in an effort to get it right tomorrow I once again ask BOM to tell me how to dress when I venture out. They suggest, with a great deal of confidence, it will not rain.
Guess what? I get wet within minutes of leaving my door mat.
When challenged on these inaccuracies their response is quite predictable yet equally puzzling

Dear Mr Dinning.
Thank you for your enquire on our methods of prediction.
We do not predict weather; we determine probability of events based on current measurement and historical statistical data.
For yesterday’s weather, we determined that there would be a less than 5% chance of rain in your vicinity. We can only determine this probability with a certainty of 40%. 
We suggest you prepare yourself for all possibilities during this season as weather forecasting is not 100% accurate, except in retrospect.
 Yours sincerely
Chief meteorologist
Darwin BOM

So, my question is: Why do we have prediction in the first place? Most circumstances can be reduced to two possibilities: right or wrong, left or right, up or down, in or out, good or bad, plus or minus, yes or no. There are more complex issues with more than two possibilities but the ‘one way or the other’ approach seems to take care of most situations.

As my Old Man would say: “If you make a wrong turn along the way, you’ll surely turn up somewhere and it may well be a better place”.

But we fret when there is more than one possibility. Our greatest anxieties often have their origins in choice. We want to be sure. We want a particular outcome. We demand the right answer. We expect predictability. We want to be sure about the one thing we can’t ever be sure about:  the future.

I flip a coin or role a dice, play eeny-meeny miny-mo, read the cards or tea leaves in order to detach myself from any decision making. I don’t trust my own judgement so I place a great deal of faith in a process assumed more reliable that I could ever be.
Giving away our responsibility amounts to the suggestion that we don’t like to be wrong. We are under a misconception that it is better to place our decision making in someone else’s hands than to make a fool of ourselves. How foolish we might seem when we venture out on a sunny day with an umbrella clearly displayed for all to deride. How humiliating an adolescent might feel when explaining to her indignant parents how she got pregnant.

“But, mum, we only did it once!”

We might then wonder if once is enough; or never enough.

For most of us ‘fair to meddling’ seems to be adequate and ‘just in case’ takes care of most situations where probability and chance are playing their hand. It might be wise to be prepared for any possibility, although this seems a bit excessive. Betting on every horse in a race will secure you a winner but to what end? After all, there can only be one winner. Unfortunately, the likelihood that your horse will be first past the post is what keeps the thrill in the chase and the money in the bookies bag.

For me, I’ll always take the path of least resistance, expect nothing and be grateful when I am surprised. For any outcome is a bonus, even if it turns out to be nothing at all.

Friday, November 29, 2019

Sex and other indeterminants.

“It’s a boy,” the midwife exclaimed.

My mother seemed content with that. She trusted the nurse to know the difference. My father would also be content. Two girls seemed enough for one family.

Back then there were some genetic tests to establish gender but mother seemed to rely on the good faith of the medical staff. How could anyone mistake a male baby from a female baby?

I didn’t discover my own gender until my arms grew long enough and I developed the fine motor skill necessary to grab things.

“Leave your Willy alone, Tommy. It’ll fall of if you keep playing with it”, was the concerned demand of my overly concerned mother.

“If god had meant for us blokes not to play with our willies he’d have made our arms shorter”, announced my father. Being an atheist he only used god as leverage when addressing my catholic mother. Irrespective of the biblical reference  my mother was not impressed.

“Do all men do that? And for their entire lives?” she asked.

I discovered in due course that my elder sisters didn’t have a willy. Had theirs  fallen off, I wondered? I didn’t want to turn into a girl so I stopped stretching the one thing I could rely on for a good grip; for a day or two.

Most information I learnt about gender was from my school mates. As unreliable as it was, it was all I had to work with. I leaned that boys were supposed to like girls, girls were nice to look at, dressed differently, didn’t have willies from birth and were nice to kiss.

I didn’t like my sisters, not all girls were nice to look at, they did dress differently but their attire also appealed to me from time to time, and although I enjoyed a kiss from my mother I couldn’t really understand why I would share that pleasure with a stranger. I certainly didn’t like it when my aunt kissed me. She left lippy all over my forehead. And I wouldn’t kiss my sisters if my life depended on it. 

As I aged I discovered that some girls appealed to my senses. They smelled pleasantly different, their voices were softer, they spoke of different matters, they walked with a stride I couldn’t mimic yet found fascinating. I began to enjoy their company. 
I still disliked my sisters and avoided their company at all cost.

My mates seemed somewhat obsessed with girls by the time I reached my teens. I was still unsure of what was expected so I followed their lead. It seemed that following girls around, teasing them, performing like pimple-faced dorks, singled out one girl for a time to apply affections and receive kisses in return was standard procedure and protocol for a cool teen male of any consequence.
Unfortunately, such behaviour on my part proved totally inadequate. A good thing really, as I still had little idea of why there was a need for another gender.

During those teen years I discovered there were some of my mates who had no interest in girls. So much so that chose to group together and only show interest in each other. There were times when I thought this might be a safer, at least more productive, option but I was warned against such a move. Apparently these  boys were considered ‘effeminate’, yet they seemed to have easy access to the very girls my mates perused.
Such is the obfuscation of teen life for a boy.

By the time my teens were coming to a close I was troubled with an infuriating infliction: my willy had become a full blown penis and was committed to embarrassing me at every moment. At the same time, possibly coincidentally or causal, I had been thrust into a situation where males where outnumbered by females at an alarming proportion; about 1 in 20. Strangely enough I nor my penis had absolutely no objection to this ratio. In fact I thrived on it, more so because the females took extraordinary notice of my presence and the once but no longer embarrassing demonstration of my manhood.

At this point of my life I finally understood the importance of gender and how it’s relevance could affect my well being. It seemed simple: look at females, find one that looked back, pay intimate attention to female’s needs, perform appropriate male duties, indulge in sexual intercourse, have children (male and/or female). This process, if indulged in by enough of my mates would ensure the continued  of the human race.
I was happy to oblige.

Through adult life my actions seemed to be well accepted and acknowledges. I was ‘normal’. But I wondered about my mates who thought differently about girls and boys; the ones who seemed to be at the butt end of jokes and name calling. How was their life now? 
It turned out they formed relationships as well; with those of the same gender. Now I know it wasn’t generally accepted in the current climate and it wasn’t going to result in the birth of children but they seemed not to be overly concerned with any of this. It seemed that their relationship with another male was as satisfying as mine was with my wife at the time, a demonstrable female if there ever was one.

I also discovered there was a female counterpart to what my mates referred to as ‘poofs’ but were now referred to a ‘gay’, a suitable title I thought since most seemed to imitate the flamboyant character of Quentin Chrisp, an animated and chipper persona as you would meet in a long march.
As Quentin once said: “Euphemisms are unpleasant truths wearing diplomatic cologne.”

I’m not sure whether lesbians became more fashionable at the time or I just started to notice them once they had been pointed out. Previously known among friends as ‘butch’ women, I assumed they were just the more robust of the gender until I came across a couple of  said women kissing on a late train out of Central Station on one Friday evening in July. 
“What the fuck are you staring at?” called the more masculine of the couple, although she still maintained a distinct feminine charm that would not have gone unnoticed in a street full of builders labourers.
“Eh, nothing really. I was admiring the strength of your relationship with your friend. I find it quite heartening.”
Both women looked at me with surprise in their eyes and mouths agape.
“Thanks, mister,” the other woman added and they returned to their facial contact with gusto.

It seems a shame that such people as gays and lesbians have been isolated from mainstream society for so long. My thinking is that the isolation has been brought about by mistrust, ignorance, religious persecution, stereotyping, intolerance to differences and a lack of experience with such people. Even the idea that they are ‘such people’ places them outside the general perception of what is normal behaviour.
I recall those at school who were just like me; finding their way in a very confusing world yet going with what felt right for them and mixing with those who had common interests.

But like all good wagons, there’s nothing like a band on board to draw the attention of fringe dwellers. Those who could not find a place within the current categorisation of humans in the general population began to ‘come out’ as they called it. There was a need for these people to present themselves in the face of current acceptance of the Lesbian and Gay community.
There were those who could go either way, both ways, or no way at all. There were those who just took their preferences day by day, even hour by hour, those who had no choice from birth and those that were specifically gender different through a mishmash in the fertilisation process. Then there were those who simply liked to play the part.
Although these variations seem, on the surface, to be superficial, strange and unacceptable to many, they do exist. Their origin may be genetic, physiological or psychological. But so is my gender.

I should point out at this point that gender and sexual preference are not the same.
I know know enough to clearly state that my sex is male. I have XY as my 45th and 46th chromosome. My gender preference is to be male. My sexual partnerships preference is with females. I don’t expect everyone to know that. It’s important that I know it.

But I remain confused, much like I was when I was a teen. I don’t understand a great deal about the new perspectives on gender. I can’t get my vocabulary around the possibilities of gender pronouns. I’m totally lost as to how I am supposed to tell one from the other.

Now I don’t fit. Then again, perhaps I never did. I felt out of place with my mates behaviour towards girls. I like the friendship of women more than I like the mate-ship of blokes. I have on a number of occasions been mistaken for a gay male, or at the least effeminate. But that’s just me being me.

Isn’t that the way we all act? We present to the world what we want others to see and understand. We are often judged by others based on their standards and beliefs, not our own. We also judge others poorly. We get it wrong often. 

At the end of the day we can only take people for what they are. If they do us no harm we can fully accept them as we might with anyone else we meet. 

My school mate, Ronny, once informed me he had punched a bloke in the nose because the bloke had made a pass at him.

Some years later, while shopping for breakfast cereal in a local supermarket I was approached by a pleasant young man who wondered if I might come home with him to share his breakfast. I declined but thanked him for the offer. I was flattered that he would ask.

I certainly hope times have changed and we can value the difference  all humans contribute to our societies.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Are you sure?

How sure can you be ..... of anything, really?
A lack of confidence is seen as a sign of character weakness.
Yet we shake the dice and place our money cautiously upon the table.
The game is played out. When we win we celebrate our prediction. When we lose we curse the luck played on us.
The ride is shaky. I hang on, fingers crossed. Others around me wait for a fall. There is no entertainment in safety, in security, in knowing. One must take risks to please the crowd.
I am never sure .... of anything. Despite my confidence, I will fall. Somewhere.
Don’t laugh. I tried.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

What are the chances?

XX or XY
Open in or out.
Rain or dry.
An early flight.
Left or right.
Hate or like.
Win a prize.
Die overnight.
Wrong or right.
Flip the coin
Play the cards
Place your bet
Throw the dart hard
No confidence
Try again
What is the chance
Pink rabbit dance.

Monday, April 22, 2019

Finding our way.

Most organisms find their way by chance.
The chance sighting of some food, the chance of pheromones entering the sense organs, the chance of rain for germination, the chance of flying before dying. Even the chance on which we are all born form the genes of our parents.
Humans, on the other hand, believe they can remove chance from their existence. Prediction, possibilities, forecasting, future analysis, investment, prognosis; all suggest we can, in some way, know what is coming.
And when we fail we are surprised, shocked, disappointed, even offended by the ignorance of those who could not see the future.
Then we reflect. Where did we go wrong? What can we learn? What do we need to change? What might have been?
There is the lesson. We stand on the path and that’s as far as we can see ahead of us. We can look back and see how we got here. That is a fact. What lies ahead is chance.
Throw the dice now. Tomorrow the result will be different. Walk the path but never be sure of where you will end up. Take the surprise as a gift. That’s all we can do.



The pathway to sanity has been long and arduous. Here I was thinking I was normal. Tension and anxiety were simply a part of everyday life. ...