Friday, 18 February 2011

It's been a while!

Well I've currently been slacking pretty bad in this whole blogging department, don't know why.. Well I know why and that's down to revising, procrastinating and not having much to say but now I'm back, for today at least!

I've been thinking quite hard today, well at least for the past 8 hours or so about what I'd like to do with my time to actually develop a certain skill and I've come to the conclusion that building things, things out of wood and carving is something that I'd like to do. I've always enjoyed carving wood, ever since I was about 10 or 11 and we put up an amazing archway in my old school to commemorate the year 2000. I had the best job, I drew a horse and cart to resemble the old village where I grew up.

The village is called Penally which is located just outside of Tenby in Pembrokeshire. I wish I knew more about the history of the village so I could give more depth to the story. All I know is that the church there was built in the 13th Century or was it the 12th Century? I don't know, next time I'm down that way I'll have a look and correct myself in a later post. It's a very picturesque place. If you go just to the Green near the church you will be able to have fantastic sea views which overlook Caldey Island. The village has farms scattered, delightful pubs which host fantastic meals. One pub in fact used to be a Paddock, hence the name "The Paddock Inn". Most of the people there are friendly enough to say "morning" to you as you walk passed them on your way to the shop and be greeted with a friendly hello and welcoming feel as you walk through the village. I like that place a lot, I hope that one day I could retire there. What else? Oh yeah, the main road which goes through Penally was originally built for the transportation of a horse and cart and I had luckily been chosen to draw it.

So I drew the horse and cart on to a piece of paper which I then traced on to the big slab of wood. All the tools in front of me, the chisels and hammers were just amazing, razor sharp and so precise. I had the help from some guy, I wish I knew his name because I would like so much advice right now on how to do so many things which I want to do! The horse and cart looked fantastic, with deep ridges around the outside scaling inwards with the raised image of the picture within the middle which then got carved even more to give it a 3D effect, was totally beautiful.

So why arts and crafts you say? I don't know, there's something, somewhere subconsciously telling me that being able to make things with my hands would be so much fun. I'm inspired by how people such as Ray Mears can sit down for hours upon end and caress a piece of wood and turn it in to something which will be there for a life time, or until it gets weathered down anyway. Maybe I'm a descendent from some tribes men? Or is there just something buried down deep within us somewhere where we like to make things, from things? I'd like to find out nonetheless.

I'd like to start making small things, nothing too drastic. Boxes for starters, perhaps along the lines of Jewellery Boxes or picking up some drift wood off the beach and just sit there for a few hours, or a couple of days and just create some gorgeous looking stick to gather dust in the corner of my room, but also showing it off to anyone who dare enter the lair.

I talked to a friend today about it, and he said it's best to just start at something basic. He's fantastic at what he does and it's so much so now that he's got his wife involved too! There's no going back now, she's finally left the kitchen! - Yes that is a joke. Anyway, their website is though it is not up and running as such yet, he has promised me once everything has been sorted he will put pictures up there and prices of the items which he produces all by hand, or a lathe. If any of you are interested in finding more about his wood craft, why not take a look at the facebook profile This will definitely be a good place to start looking at what he can do.

For me it's not just about wood craft, it's about finding anything which has no use for it any more these days. I think sitting in lectures about being eco friendly and conservation has finally been drilled in to me. I've seen so many things I can make from different materials, from plastic drum barrels to a packet of crisps. From old glossy magazines to discarded old shoes. And this is what I want, why can't we do something productive and creative out of the things in which we throw away? We waste so much, we don't recycle enough.

Yes some of you must be thinking that this is a waste of time now, he's started talking about the village he grew up in and now he's wanting us to be eco nuts! Well, that's not the case, I think rubbish could in fact be art and I'm going to try my damned best to start creating something from nothing, just to see how it goes! What's the worst thing that could happen? Probably a bunch of rubbish in the corner of my room, which I will then go on to recycle! See, every body wins.

Well that's about it for now, hopefully I'll be here again soon to talk about something else!

Wednesday, 9 February 2011


Oh how I hate Wednesdays. It always starts out really well with going to the gym and then I think about what to do with myself to make it as productive as possible and what happens? I just sit on my arse for near on 12 hours and cook dinner around 6pm. It's mind numbing. You totally forget the outside world and realise that there is nothing in your life, only because the productiveness has gone right out of the window by 11pm at night when you actually want to do something. The Wednesday mindset.

It's already time for bed and the next two days are so rammed with lectures that I will probably have no time to catch up on reading over notes, or catching up with work which doesn't get done in lab sessions, even though if I sat down and actually did the work, I would understand a lot more and already be confident enough to do what I need to do. I'm sure Wednesdays are for that reason; reading notes, finding out about things which you aren't so sure on and hopefully from now on I suppose I could do that, couldn't I? Unless I could find a part time job, but do I really want to do that? I mean even though Wednesdays are the in fact awful, working wouldn't give me much more of a reason to enjoy them, though it would give me the extra money for which I can enjoy myself, buy things which I wouldn't usually think of buying. Definitely something to consider.

Wednesdays are definitely a downer, sometimes it actually makes you think how slow life can be. There really should be someone there constantly telling me to get off my arse, like a personal trainer shouting at me at every given opportunity when I decide to sit on this brown leather throne and relax. Relax? Watching TV for 12 hours and having a few hours on World of Warcraft is anything but relaxing, it's quite irritating when you realise that you should try and not take life for granted and just do as much as you possibly can to make you think "wow, that was actually a good day" and feel good when you finally hit the sack.

Maybe I should get a personal trainer, or just invite one of those hyperactive and always happy friends around every Wednesday to do something relatively productive. Could've gone out for a meal tonight, but we had steak inside instead. I'm not saying steak isn't enjoyable, because it is! I could've just been out and interacting with more people! That isn't a dig at my flat mates by the way, they're great.

Perhaps moaning about it isn't the best way to go either, because I'm still sitting on my arse right now as I'm complaining. Though it does help, the thoughts and feelings there in front of me, in plain black and white which get reread about 100 times before I actually press "Publish Post" to see if I could put anything else in there, to show that Wednesdays are what Wednesdays are.. As the German's say "Mittwoch" which is literally translated to "mid-week", not yet the weekend, and not yet the start of the week where you usually have so much enthusiasm to get so much done. Where does all that enthusiasm go? I wish I knew. Perhaps caffeine could be the answer, definitely need more of that.

Anyway, fuck it, this Wednesday is almost over!

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

The blog has landed!

Well look at this, it's already my second day updating this blog and though I have no idea what the hell to put on here I thought I'd update my little corner of the internet as it were. Who would've thought? Me actually sticking to something for a change.

I think there's been like some sort of drastic change in my life to actually stick and do things. For example, this diet that I'm on at the moment, I've been doing it for five weeks strong and apart from my course obviously, is going pretty well. I say my course isn't going well, but it is. I just like to think and challenge myself to not do as much reading so I can stress out as much as possible at the end which is what I've always done and it's how I'll be. Not only have I stuck to my diet at the moment, but also my new love.. Twitter.

Why Twitter? I honestly thought it was the worst thing known to man, "why have facebook status updates and not have any other function?" I'd used to think to myself, but then realising it was more than just that I joined and follow the people or organisations which interest me, it's like your own little news feed, with up to date information which I personally want myself, none of this manufactured horse shite which we get spoon fed on a daily, if not hourly basis on ITV, Sky, Channel 4 or BBC.

Though is the stuff which I'm reading manufactured on Twitter? I mean these so called celebrities or companies which update "breaking news" or articles on a regular basis or updates about little, trivial things in their lives which make a massive difference in other peoples lives, people who follow them, including myself. Let's be honest, who doesn't like seeing a picture of an animal which has just been discovered and just so happens have to be 'cute'? Or the recently discovered Amazonian tribe which has literally no contact with the outside world? Or how a celebrity has decided to inform the entire world that they have just stubbed their toe on a cabinet? Has the entirety of the general public become so completely ignorant to the real world which is around them? To lose track of the one thing which we can hold on to, intelligence.

Now I can hear you thinking "Ha, intelligence? What about the guy who lives down the road who can't string a sentence together?" Obviously, I'm talking about the human race as a whole. We have come so far in such a short amount of time, from being hunter gatherers who survived on basic survival instincts, to a race which now is so technologically advanced and so technologically dependent that half, if not most of the human race have no idea where, why, when, how or even care how we have evolved. Wikipedia will only give you so much information.

Are you thinking I'm being rather hypocritical about all this? I mean all the resources which us humans have used to create just this laptop which I'm using right now, the minerals, the ores, the land, the ecology, geology, geography and the lives which we have lost just to produce the every day things which we see around us. Our sofas, our carpets, our fridges, dishwashers, even our water. You would be right in thinking I'm being rather hypocritical, as I also take all these things for granted, and I do enjoy them, to an extent. It's just a part of evolution.

Wouldn't it be nice to devolve? Not physically, but technologically. Would you survive? Could we survive? To once again feed off the land, to be 'at one' with nature, to understand and comprehend your surroundings so well that you might just in fact find what you're looking for, peace of mind. To not take the land for granted, as it's your home, and to look after the land as it is your mother. Would you in fact shed a tear about a tree being cut down? Bedrock being exploded, demolished just to create cement for the houses which we dwell in. I am obviously technologically dependent, but I would love to leave it all, if I could, to live off the land, to experience life the way it should be. I do envy those Amazonian tribes, they have such a simple way of life, but it suits them. No Twitter or Facebook. They get their updates from the voices which surround them and I find that quite warming. Though there is one big word within that paragraph, and that is "if". Everything is if, what if, as if, if I could.

Trailing back to the question about the content of Twitter being manufactured. I have come to the conclusion that it really doesn't matter about whether it's manufactured or not, as in the long run it doesn't actually affect you, as you will still go on with your day to day life, in such a dogmatic way which everything you read 15 or 20 minutes prior will have been shot from your head and you're wondering when is the best time to leave work, find a new job, take up a new hobby, find the love of your life or just drop everything and go.

Well that has been a pretty intense rant, apologies!

Monday, 7 February 2011

Well, this is new.. apparently!

Well time to start the blog! On the 6th January 2011 I decided to create a blog whilst I was daydreaming on the 5 hour train journey which I have to endure every few months to go back to university, or to go 'home'. I make it sound like a complete chore, but it's honestly peaceful, calming, the views are relatively nice, if you like Wales that is. You usually meet some people which you'll obviously never speak to again, but they usually make quite an impact on you!

I stopped off at Crewe train station and I had a 45 minute delay so I decided to have a cigarette as you do! 35 minutes pass and I realised that I had dropped my tobacco, so I had to go and buy some more, harmless you say? Well, let's move on to the train!

I got talking to some fantastic guy who offered me a beer and he eventually departed my company, which was unlucky on my part because he was keeping me sane whilst we both had to stand for 50 minutes, delays and snow are never a good thing. So I finally get a seat where everyone usually throws their bags and some woman sits opposite me, but this woman has a table and I was utterly jealous. So after about 30 minutes of sitting in the same position she catches my eye and starts talking, and this is where it all goes down hill.

She was definitely in her late 50s, on her journey to Newport to meet her 'fella' who she hasn't seen in a while, and she started talking about what she would do to him when she saw him. I'm not sure what put everyone off more, the moustache which was under her nose or the absolute filth which was coming out of her mouth. Personally I found it absolutely hilarious and egged her on quite a bit. So as the conversation faded somewhat, I realised that in craving nicotine, I needed a cigarette and so I decided to just say to her 'I could really do with a cigarette', and to my disgust, she pulls out a packet of tobacco, which funnily enough looks exactly like the one I lost at Crewe. She then started to laugh and I said "what?", totally irritated with her, she stole my tobacco! She said "some poor bugger dropped this at Crewe, I stood on it, checked it was full so I picked it up and put it in my pocket." So I questioned her about it, and there was something very specific about this pouch, baring in mind it was one of those new Amber Leaf pouches which come from a box but is totally tiny and it had some writing on the inside of it to which I can thank a friend in a lecture for that. So she asked "have you got any skins so I can roll a fag?" I looked at her and said "by any chance does it say Hitler's Pubes, with an arrow pointing down inside the pouch?" Well, I've never seen someone's face go from glee to disbelief in such a short space of time! But not only that, she then stood up, shouted "no" at me, stole the rizla from my hand and sat elsewhere! I think I made a friend.

Right, so after that massive tangent on why train journeys are just so magical, back to why I've started a blog! So why did it take me so long to write my first blog? Well, this isn't actually my first blog, but I've been very sporadic about the way in which I write blogs, so I've deleted them all and this one is what I'm going to stick with, I think. This blog is going to be more of a journal than to actually try and make my mark on the world and become famous. Becoming famous is not why I write, or care about. I write for my own personal use and just hope people enjoy some of the stories which I tend to spill from my mind!

So, let's see where this blog goes...