Sunday, June 04, 2006

easing back in

I've spent the last 6 weeks struggling through basic conceptual reframes of my ontological position. As well as trying to work out what those words mean - either individually or put toegther in some kind of order - I have been trying to write an epistemological journal.

this is very confusing and its been difficult to find the energy or even the will to blog.

hope that explains a bit

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Service interdit

This goldfish is currently experiencing the effects of a crisis of faith and a level of confusion not easily worked out of. I have been told that this is encouraging. At best it is uncomfortable moment by moment, otherwise its just weird

Abnormal service will be resumed as soon as clarity descends

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

IT Training

What to do for 20-30 minutes whilst one's students are busily surfing away on the proscribed sites - BBC Webwise very good for learnign how to use the PC, V&A - very good for buying postcards and seeing Modernist things - until regulation tea time comes? Blog away.

The lack of bloggin - reflected in the lesser bloggings of the Cat, the Shark and the Laydee - might suggest a lack of life. Au contraire, life is full to bursting with change and uncertainty.

Today, I think, is Wednesday and I am at work, helping 20 members of staff understand selling membership, evacuating lifts, using computers and the latest exhibition on Modernism. All in an afternoon.

The family is still, I assume, in Tel Aviv, where the suns shines, the food is cheap and all the women are beautiful and all the men manly.

I have a bottle of red wine, some chilli and tomato sauce, some brie and some pasta for tonight.

THis much I know. The question is how do I know what I know - more anon

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

The view from abroad

It seems somewhat absurd to be watching Arsenal v. Juventus with the sound down (for the sake of the sleeping kids) on the Hebrew commentation, whilst I shoudl be getting on with my thoughts on what I understand "organisation: to mean.

It is pissing down in Tel Aviv. I sort of got chucked out the flat this mrongin to wander aimlessly with the kids through Shenkin Street - a sort of cross between Camden Lock and Neal Street, without the stalls but with plenty of shoe shops and street cafes. In the end we got caught in the rain along Hemelech George (King George, named after Queen Elizabeth's Dad - strangely many of Tel Aviv's streets are named after British characters whom only appear as footnotes and statues in Whitehall). We ended up at the Dizengoff Shopping Centre - don't know who Dizengoff was, but weren't British that's for sure.

To placate a screaming Thom we had to buy a Hot Wheels set - which has gone down a treat and I am looking forward to adding to over the next few years. It has a certain dynamism that Brio train sets, nice though they are and good as a primer for civil transport system planning and desgin, just don't have.

Time for another chucking out - my host needs the computer and as I have already broken one tea cup today, I think I shoudl comply.

To bed and Paul Watzlawick's "Change: probem formulation and problem solution"


Friday, March 31, 2006

in passing...

... last weekend was taken with the writing of the draft of the assignment which is the summation of the learning from the experience of the formation of the CAG (Consulting Application Group) at Workshop 1 of Module 1 of AMOC 9. It took every night from about 10 until 2 in the morning to hit a self imposed deadline with Robin my tutor. What transpired was that I wasn't going to hit the deadline and would need an extra day. This actually suited Robin better because he was flying to DC on the Monday and we had a weird e-mail conversation about timezones and whether to talk over breakfast or lunch. In the end he rang me on Tuesday evening whilst he was digesting his lunch to inspire me to completely rewrite the 5,000 words. It is interesting to notice (this is the phrase that appears inumerous times during the assignment - it is the byword on AMOC - noticing - self reflexivity) how relieved and glad I was of the phone call. Robin didn't say it was a pile of shit. He teased out a few areas which he thought were interesting, enticed some further reflection from me, reframed the assignment and left me feeling surprisingly confident of my own abilities. Isn't that a great gift to have!

The last 3 weeks have been dominated by the draft writing and the coming 10 days will be shadowed by the handing in deadline. To quote Shakespeare "AMOC have murdered sleep" - this is because the only time I have been able to find the space and quiet to read and write has been post kids bedtime - and this haven is delayed slightly by the need to have a bit of a break from the cycle of getting up earlier than one would like after less sleep than one needs > rushing through morning rituals to get to work in time > so that one can get everything done > before one dashes back to pick up child from nursery > and then spend a few hours entertaining/feeding/bathing/story reading until they are all asleep.

Anyway we are off to Tel Aviv tomorrow for a) 4 weeks or b) 2 weeks if you have to come back to go to work and also do their masters course. We leave tomorow afternoon with the joyful discovery of being able to put a friend on the car insurance for free and have them drive you to Heathrow [a buggy, a large car seat, three suitcases, two kids and the missus panicking towards check in does not work on public transport] . In Tel Aviv I will be finding new ways of finding space to write a 5,000 word assignment encouraged by the presence of not only my family but my family's family. I hope to blog the experience.

One slightly worrying moment at the last workshop was discovering that a fellow participant was a) over a similar age, b) had been active the city of my university at the same time as I was studying, and c) had been not only a goth but then a psychobilly . Suffice to say that I had knowledge of some women from such tribes during that same period and I had to ask whether we had known each other previously. We agreed that it was unlikely. Phew!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

much seems to be passing me by at present. Ring shaped potato snacks are flying through the ether and the air at in alarming quantities

The hula hoop obsession that has been plaguing the New York, London, Paris, Munich (everyone's talking 'bout Pop Music) - well not really but since the Jazzshark flew into to town on her round the family world tour its noticeable that United Biscuits (parents of KP Foods) share price has risen on both the Dow and the Nikkei. Baroness CNL of Hernewich is feeding the frenzy.

For those unaware of the small ring-shaped snacks made from processed dried potatoes I do recommend for the definitive online resource for ring-shaped snacks and all other snackable foodstuffs. Their reviews of over a thousand different "sometimes foods" as the Cookie Monster would have it, are invaluable for the committed conoisseur of cheesy crispy crunchy comestibles

And apologies for the crude reference to M's seminal throw away track - but hunting it down did lead me to the Space Age Pop Music site - I do recommend their Space Age Pop broadcast for an endless stream of listening designed for cocktail lounging.

Monday, March 13, 2006

I got a comment from laydee hernewich asking if I was still chanting?

I took this to be a polite enquiry as to why there was not al ot happening on the page over the past week or so. Interestingly the lack of blog is not an indication of lakc of things happening to talk about, rather the opposite, so much going on that there is no time to stop and think, or rather to reflect. The blog is a great place to set down thoughts, release rant, and throw things out into the ether to see what bounces back.

I am in heavy active reflective mode (as well as theoretical mode) as I was at the big school Thu-Sat last week. 3 days residential, away from the family, more grub than you can shake a very large fork at and people accepting of my particular stream of consciousness thinking. In fact the noticing and commenting and reflecting is actively encouraged. My Triumph motorbike driving professor, said that we should take the opportunity to “honour” the quality of the conversations that we have on our AMOC get togethers.

Have to admit that the conversations one has at home, in the pub on Tuesday night, at work in the office, with passing drivers on the daily commute are not of the same nature. Not that that makes them bad in any way – just there does seem a need for me to outpour on occasion. This usually happens when the night extends out and the alcohol is present.

My Lenten denial is going to plan – i.e. 40 days and 40 nights without alcohol, except when its Tuesday night or when its AMOC. SO far that has meant only 3 days out of the last week have been dry!!

Probably the biggest influence on the whole blog-down-time was the weekend previous when I got about 1 hour to myself in the course of 4 days. Purely by accident the missus was going out on the Friday night, out all day Saturday, out till 2pm on Sunday and then in need of a sleep until about 5, and then out on the Monday night. I don’t count the period after lights out when the kids are down for the night, because this is inevitably tidy up the mess, wash the dishes (that don’t ift in the dish washer), do the laundry, hoover the mess, relay the mouse traps (yes, we have a mouse or mice who like to visit my wife in the evenings – she is very vocal in her discomfort and that does have an affect on my ability to get off to sleep if by some miracle I am in bed before midnight) and generally sort things out for the next day.

I managed to notice (whilst in the maelstrom of frustration) that it is not about tiredness it is about feeling trapped and not having any time to let thoughts settle, no time to find a bit of personal space. The cycle is one of growing frustration then anger and after that depression. Not very healthy and I do need to find some way of subverting this cycle.

I have to say that all the thinking and reading and “what the xxxx does that mean”ing which the course is throwing up has brought me to this nice cyclical view point. The need is therefore to create or enable a secondary order of change to assist the better functioning of my beleaguered brain.

I am going to have a chat with the boss to see if I can find some new ways of working – from home every now and again, from the library, from across the road, from a distance, from a trapeze, from a view to a kill – which can try

The basic Buddhist tenet of changing yourself to change the environment that surrounds you, the Donne-ian view “no man is an island” and the Ghandi-ian view of “be the change you want to see” seems to be the appropriate one here. Change the way I do things to change the environment around me.