I’m now being less angry at www.zephyrtron.wordpress.com

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The posts I like the most…

Plato’s Echo Chamber

“Are we diminished by not being open to other interpretations? Of course we are. No one got more intelligent by not asking questions, and no one learned more without accepting that there were things they did not know, or understand.”

Am I becoming Thatcher’s greatest achievement?

“Does the government owe a job to everyone? Why couldn’t all those ex-miners find other means of work, retrain and pursue other futures? This stressed me out terrifically because it challenged something I’d believed for a long time.”

#shitgirlssay #shitboyssay – What’s the difference?

“Men are being asked to give, because it’s men who have something to give. And any man who can’t give and see how it benefits him, who can’t understand that raising the value of women doesn’t equal a leeching of the value of men, is a ridiculous, emotionally stunted, mentally vacuous sorry excuse for a manboy, a manchild, scared of being asked to re-evaluate their own lives and feelings in the light of a changing world.”

Talking to boys

“As kids growing up we come in direct contact with the daily rules or rituals of our civilised lives. Don’t drop litter, no spitting, stay off the grass, keep your music down, don’t be rude, fork in the left hand, violence is bad. But we’re also surrounded by these rules being broken, from subversive culture to aggressive behaviour and right back to adults (authority figures) striding off to shoot rifles, drop bombs and strafe the enemy from the cockpit of a Messerschmitt.”

lxix

“If most of our lives is spent casting around looking for something that fits, then this is the ultimate goal. The meaning of life, if you like, and if I’m to be so brash and confident in expressing that. Which I am. Because what other meaning could there be to life than to explore the boundaries of what makes a life and finding the shape which matches you?”

#OpenMinday – Cheating, high-brow laddism and Venn diagrams

“But if this is why men cheat – because they’re too afraid or simply not equipped to be honest with themselves or their partner – then how do we talk about the urges and conflicts that exist in relationships. How do we express that someone isn’t right for someone else?”

#OpenMinday – Three Men and a Baby and the capacity of all men

“The film transcends gender roles in a way that is amazing for any film, let alone a big-name Hollywood film that came out 25 years ago. And yet, maybe it’s not that amazing, given the era. Maybe we’ve just gone backwards a little since then.”

xlv

“And perhaps that’s why these men are such giants to me. Botham’s weakness as a captain was merely proof of his strength as an unshackled powerhouse, a teamplayer who would stand above when called to do so. Jones and Wilkinson, both brittle bodies, have in all ways achieved far, far greater things than stronger men more suited to their sports will ever reach for, let alone grasp and own through feat of will.”

The etiquette of eating shit

“Sooner or later, you’re going to have to eat shit. Do you want to keep on living in a world of shit? Or do you want to stop having to dodge all that other shit by accepting that if you really have to eat shit, it has to be your own.”

The Fog of Commerce -and- The Nomads of Financialism

“You have to be an idiot to hate Capitalism. Wait, I’ll clarify. You have to be an idiot to notlive in a hut you built yourself, eating food you grew or raised or killed yourself, concerning yourself with the coming seasons (of the year, not Dexter) and hate Capitalism.”

On Tuition Fee Mistakes and #OpenBook, @mariellaf1, @BBCRadio4 @MartinSLewis #OpenMindaySpecial

“I would go so far as to suggest that in the last 10 years, perhaps almost 15 years, there has been no better time for a student of the arts or humanities to go to university.”

#OpenMinday @GoodMenProject and being a man

“We are people first and gender second. We must be, because we are people first and colour second, or nationality, or belief. We must be, because it’s the only thing we all truly share. Our differences don’t need pros and cons, they simply are.”

xxxv

“Many of us in my generation were raised by women who had campaigned, who had stood up and fought or made themselves heard. It was the mothers who raised the hand and the fathers who were never angry but disappointed, but fathers who never intimidated. We are sons who, for all that we love them, did not want to be our fathers or to overcome them.”

xliv

“When I think of being disciplined or told off as a child, it’s my mother who carried this out. Right now, with just a quick check of the memory banks, I can’t bring out any moments where I was really told off by my father. Among friends I find this stereotype of the dad figure always saying he “wasn’t angry, he was disappointed,” rather than of the stern patriarch, always allied with the strong ‘enforcer’ mother type.”

What lies behind online misogyny?

“I believe that you should read your Spider-Man. With great power comes great responsibility. Free speech is one of the most powerful gifts we have from society (and it is society which holds free speech as an accepted human right). But that doesn’t actually mean we can just say what we like.”

#OpenMinday – Sport, commentary and banter @BarnayRonay @EvaWiseman @martinkelner

“Banter is a loud and unpleasant fart, semi-self aware, guiltily enjoyed for the effect it has on bystanders but ultimately and unavoidably a waste product that could have been avoided. Or at the very least genuinely apologised for.”

xxxviii

“I remember a policeman coming to school, driving us around the playground in the car. I guess that’s where my policeman thing comes from. How tall he was. His car was so clean, and it driving around the playground changed the playground, made it smaller, brought the world into the school, made the school smaller.”

#OpenMinday – Spanking, and parenting @RealDoctorStu @KateKatharina @lizfraser1 @cherrymum1972 @NigelNelson

“…the question of whether it’s right or not to smack your child is defunct, dead in the water. The interesting question to ask is why would you smack your child?”

Geekness

“Weeks ago I was passing through Burton-on-Trent and was almost moved to tears when I discovered that Spirit Games, the quintessential independent gaming shop, was still open.”

xxxvi

“The 90s then, are me. They are my cauldron. The final years of primary school, Friends on the TV after the paper round (during which my sister and I dumped our freesheets in the recycling bins at the local Somerfield). Italia ’90, which I can hardly visualise, yet the incredible intricately mown pitches of USA ’94 are indelibly marked on my inner eye.”

Why I stopped writing

“Or, how forums and comments gradually eroded my capacity to give a shit about videogames journalism.”

Paranormal reshoot

“His voice is swallowed up by a DISTORTED ROAR as the camera charges towards him.  It crashes into Mika and is thrown to the ground where it falls on its side, pointing at the kitchen wall.  O.S. Mika is screaming.  The house shakes.

Mika’s shrieks are strangled abruptly.  A hand falls into shot.  The house stops shaking.”

Edge of Darkness

“I remember sitting in the living room with my dad while he watched a terrifically bleak documentary about Chernobyl. Well, what I actually remember is the awful story of the workmen doomed to a single task: donning laughable ‘protective’ clothing, then hurrying out onto the bare roof of a building under the shadow of the shattered power station to desperately shovel bare rubble into a pile. Irradiated rubble.”

xxii

“With Gunny, I have to commit to a word. There’s no delete, and though you can overwrite to create a messy splurge of ink impacted on the page, the crucial thing is that I’m going to be writing the words down and actually getting them out of my head – where, if previous experience is anything to go by, the good will thrive and the weak will die.”

lxxxii

“Deep, meaningful conversations over office Christmas lunch…”

lxxxviii

“My entire life has been coloured by my problem with girls. Women are a different matter. But my fear of girls, my longing, my need, my understanding (or misunderstanding), my distrust/mistrust, my disconnection, plagued me from childhood to adulthood.”

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