Isn’t it awful?

I had a couple of emails recently from kind readers of asking me if everything is OK, since I haven’t updated the blog for longer than usual.  Thank you, everything is OK here.  I’m in a more than usually tight exam schedule in school, and by the end of the next week it will all be over. Weekends have become recovery time, not blogging time.

I have also been involved in a systematic soil experiment – under the auspices of Future Learn and the University of Dundee – and for this I have started a series of pages on this blog if you want to look at the the first one, which is now uploaded.

The donkeys are going into their summer schedule of long dozy siestas in the shade of the stable, with intermittent dust baths in the sun.  Here’s Aitana demonstrating donkey life in the Costa Blanca at its best:

So, the donkeys are OK.  Also we have chickens now and they are OK.  They are not named yet, as I was advised not to name them until I am sure they will survive the various night predators, but they are OK for the moment.  The chicken run also acts as entertainment for the donkeys (a sort of donkey television) and sometimes Matilde likes to put her head inside and pretend she is a chicken.  We also have daily visits from Alan Partridge.  (Mrs Partridge is probably sitting on her eggs at the moment.)

Yes, I’m OK. Donks are OK. Chickens are OK.  Alan Partridge is OK.

But let me also join in the general agreed view, and say isn’t it awful?  Isn’t it all bloody awful?  It was over a month ago that I was waiting to hear the news on Radio 4 and there was yet one more of those pontificating talks called “A Point of View”, which I usually ignore.

I get fed up with the luvvies of the chattering classes getting endless opportunities to tell us about their hobby horse ideas, just because they know someone who can give them a microphone. A.L.Kennedy is just one more of them, and I get fed up with her monotonous voice too.  But on this occasion, she started with the question, “Isn’t it awful?”

I sat up and took notice, as it had already become a refrain in my life…  Brexit, Trump, Putin, Assad, plastic pollution in the ocean, isn’t it awful?  And that was before that nasty little shit blew himself up in Manchester last week and killed teenagers and children who had just gone out to a concert.

A.L.Kennedy delivers a very relevant meditation on the shrill media voices which deliver “awfulness” to us every day.  Hourly updates of the awfulness are hardly enough.  Anyone who is calm, must be less informed…  Listen to her.  If you only listen to one point of view this year, hear this one.

I think I should heed the advice, but I seem to be addicted to the news.  I just come away every time saying, “Isn’t it awful?”  Yet all around me everything is OK.  In fact it is all very lovely.  As for donkey television, you very rarely hear the donkeys watching watching the chickens and saying, “Isn’t it awful?”

3 thoughts on “Isn’t it awful?

  1. I’ve just been sickened by the popular sport of bandwagon jumping. ‘celebrities’ out in force to celebrate ‘unity and resilience’ in Manchester. The stories of personal grief, shock and bereavement have all been brushed away. Respectful mourning is ‘out’let’s have ‘celebrities having a ‘fun day out’ instead. After all grief is now a ‘Mental health problem’ isn’t it?

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I completely agree with you.

    In 1989 I was one of the first people on the scene outside Anfield stadium in Liverpool on that Saturday afternoon when the news started coming in from Hillsborough. There would be many months of work ahead, learning how to respond constructively to people’s grief. As a thirty-something Franciscan friar, I struggled to find any Christian message that would help the people I counselled, or give me any honest sense that religion could provide comfort and answers. Hearing of the horror in Manchester, nearly thirty years on, all I can think of is the long road ahead, both for the families of the dead and injured, and those professionals who counsel them.

    The damage to the wider community is immense, and the simplistic Conservative government propaganda idea of the “community pulling together” and “carrying on life as normal” is crass and insensitive.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Life being fine is normal for most people. We are hardwired to be aware of possible trouble coming our way (especially as we get older) and rely on the media to be our watchmen for same. Alarming news sells papers. Scare stories are tailored for the different demographics. I notice that The Express usually carries a health story on its front page so its readers must be hypochondriacs.

    Glad to know that you, the donks, the chickens and Alan Partridge are well. Enjoy the summer.



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