Trees in the snow
Personal

Well holy shit, somehow it’s February

I haven’t posted since my review of Force of Nature on the 15th of January, which was a cheat post anyway because I wrote it last June. Before that I did my End of Year Reflections, plus a few other posts thinking about the year that had just happened and the one that was coming up.

Well, suffice it to say 2017 wasn’t exactly excellent. For the past few years I’ve adopted a Russian tradition of writing a wish for the upcoming year on a piece of paper, burning it, then tipping the ash into a glass of champagne and drinking it as I welcome in the new year. This year I didn’t get a chance to do that, but if I had then my wish would have been for the year to be better than 2017.

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Personal

A Year In Recap: 2017

Well, it hasn’t been the best of years. I’ve spent most of it heavily medicated, curled up in beds or baths at home or in hospital. However, there have been some highlights, and the extended period of time at home made me remember some stuff I’d forgotten, like how important philosophy is to me, and how much I enjoy spending time alone.

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Personal, Philosophy

How We See Things

The ways in which people interpret the world have always amazed and intrigued me. How two people can look at the same situation, be armed with the same knowledge about it, and yet still come out with different conclusions (aka ‘politics’). How two people can have a very similar experience and yet react in wildly different ways. How something that can floor one person won’t bother another.

But even more subtly: how the individual ways in which we think about the world – our personal hermeneutics – help us to see things through a unique lens.

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Personal, Weekly Round-Ups

This Week, Not Much To Report

Without wanting to sound too morose about it, this week was shit and I have nothing much to report. I was very ill and I spent most of it either in bed or in the bath. However, in the interests of making sure you all know I’m still alive, and of keeping people updated so they don’t inundate me with messages asking how I am, I will write a short post anyway.

On Thursday I spent a record 15 hours in the bath, 12 of them in one straight run. About once every two hours I’d get out, drain the water and run a new one. I’ve now used up my annual allowance of water, I think.

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Personal, Weekly Round-Ups

A Week Of Pleasant Surprises

I was finally feeling more alive again this week, having essentially spent three weeks asleep. I caught up on a bit of work, and read some stuff, and watched some stuff, and generally had a fairly relaxed time.

Well, apart from nearly making a chemical weapon in my bathtub when a giant spider appeared in it. That wasn’t so relaxing. (There are no pictures of spiders in that post. Or this one.)

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Personal

How To Act When Someone You Know Is Seriously Ill

As we all know, I’ve been stumbling through life a bit pathetically over the past few months, after my internal organs started trying to kill me. They probably won’t succeed, because they haven’t succeeded any other time they’ve tried and because I’m getting treatment, but in the meantime I’m pretty much housebound, except for occasional trips to the supermarket at the end of the road on days when I have enough energy to walk there.

Yesterday was one of those days (yay!) and I went to buy some washing up sponges and some pears. Now that I can sometimes eat successfully, I am experimenting with different foods. So far most non-citrus fruits seem to be OK most of the time (double yay).

On my way there I bumped into a friend whom I haven’t seen since just before I got ill. We had a brief conversation, then he went on his way, I did my shopping and came home. On the way back I realised that his reaction has been a textbook example of the best way to act when someone you know is seriously ill. I know it’s a subject that’s understandably difficult for a lot of people – what should I say? when should I say it? is it OK to ask stuff? – so I thought I’d use him as an example and write a post about it.

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