the power over us that is evil hair

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We have a strange relationship with hair.

We coif it. We clean it. We condition it. We cut it and shave it. We brush and comb it. We put things in it to hold shape and create effect. We run our fingers through it. We twiddle it. We caress our face and lips with it. We examine its ends. We scratch it. We spend a fortune styling it. We protect it from the rain. We comment on other people’s.

Yet, find one in the bath at a friends, or on the bathroom floor at a bed and breakfast; find one in the bed at a hotel – especially a short curly one; get a strange long one caught in your toes … and we go mental.

Yuk. Human hair!

What do we imagine? What horrors are in our thoughts? What deadly harm might arise from this strand of humanity?

Funny. But real.

 

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eight lanes of human behaviour

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Sixteen lanes of human madness. Eight lane highways, thrusting themselves across the city, carrying life, human life, on their personal journeys. That’s what driving in Los Angeles introduces you to. Each vehicle driven; each driven differently, each by a different human being. And as cars move around me, I wonder about etiquette and behaviour on the motorway and how it matches our personal life view?

How do you travel life’s highway? And how does this reflect on your interaction and awareness of other human beings? What does it say about who you are?

Do you stay in your ‘usual’ lane, resolute in your direction and journey, if somewhat oblivious to those fellow human beings around you? You are in your lane, your space, your world. It’s all about you. If anyone else wants to get by, that’s their problem. Life’s a daydream.

Do you tailgate others, keen to get past, to speed on your way, to dominate the road? Do you pressure them, unnerve them, drive them out of your way? The horn works. Maybe you’re loud too? Does aggression and pressure show up in your life?

Do you change lanes without warning? No indication given. Expecting others to second guess your direction and take appropriate avoiding action? Are you unpredictable? Do you have a mind of your own, which others must simply adjust to, if they are to avoid a collision?

Do you undertake? Breaking rules to get ahead? Surprise people by coming up on the inside track? Take advantage of the spaces left by the ‘my lane’ drivers? You’ll get ahead, whatever the consequences, whatever rules need to be broken. You’re a winner, come what may.

Do you attend to other matters whilst driving? Text, call, make-up, shave? Are you easily distracted in life? Multitasking, you might call it. But perhaps struggling to focus might be a criticism from others? Trying to do too much? Often behind. Often overworked. Always seeking to catch up with the outstanding tasks? “Ooh look… a peanut in the glovebox from last week.”

Do you switch lanes regularly? Seeking an advantage over others when the going is slow or sticky? Attempting to outwit your fellow travellers; rejoicing perhaps in the small gains made? You can sniff an opportunity. One-upmanship perhaps a guiding quality.

Maybe you drive with your lights full beam? You need to see far ahead; see what the journey brings. Your desire to do so though, blinds others on life’s highway. They are left dazzled as you come up behind them, or dazzled as you charge towards them. The vision matters more to you than their ability to see it.

Or do you steadfastly follow the rules? Driving always within the law? Driving safely and without risk? Driving within your means? Measured. Predictable. Safe. Courteous to other road users, but often overlooked, missed, unnoticed.

Maybe it’s time to change your driving habits? Not just in the car.

bringing it

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We drew up to an innocuous white building and she cheerily announced “Marriage license, marriage counselling, divorce court, conveniently located in one building.” It was a dry, Southern patter.

The deuce bus took us from old downtown back to the strip, and our bus driver was livening up our journey in Las Vegas.

The bus slowed and she announced, “Next stop is the Stratosphere, where you can get lunch and then lose it again, all in one trip.” A little further on, she highlighted a nearby tourist attraction with, “Indoor sky diving anyone?” She paused, then hollared  “Chicken!”

Bringing a smile to someone’s day, however mundane yours or theirs is, is a good thing.

We like to smile and laugh. We just forget to some days.

 

the secret myth revealed

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You know when you’re looking for wifi and a whole host of wifi networks appear on you phone or tablet?

So, the other day, one appeared called ‘Hidden wifi’.

Not so hidden then!?

A few days ago, standing outside Pennsylvania Avenue, amongst the crowds, there were a dozen Secret Service operatives.

Is that what they’re called? Operatives? Or have I seen too many films? Agents maybe? No that’s definitely films.

Anyhow, the thing that struck me was, they were all wearing a vest, on the front of which were the words SECRET SERVICE. Capitalised and boldly displayed. Not so secret then?  If it says what you do on your t-shirt.

We like secrets. More though when we can reveal them. “Have you heard…?” “Did you know…?” Knowing a secret is in itself a currency we value.

What’s that about?

‘aim long,’ she said

Minke whale feeding off Boston MA

Whale watching off Stellwagon Bank, near Boston, today.

One mammal watching another.

There was a four to five foot swell at times, and our hostess on the boat had warned us of motion sickness before we set off. ‘Aim long,’ she suggested. ‘Your fellow passengers will approve.’ A couple did indeed succumb, although I can offer no testimony to reach.

I wonder what the whales thought?

Three boats homed in on the feeding ground, each boat laden with humans, eager to see these beautiful, majestic sea beasts. Around a dozen Humpback and Minke whales homed in on the boats, eager to see the ridiculous humans, clicking their cameras, pointing in excitement and wretching into their feeding grounds.

The sea birds, flocking around the open jawed whales, hoping to snatch a fish, seemed not to be interested in watching either mammal. Both just a food source.

We watch each other too. Mammal to mammal. Human to Human.

Sometimes overtly, sometimes surreptitiously, out of the corner of an eye. Sometimes in the flesh, sometimes online. We check out looks, clothes, what’s being said. We watch family behaviour and eating habits too. And all the time we judge. Sometimes consciously, often without realising it.

I wonder if the whales judge us?

Part of me hopes they do.