Thursday, 31 March 2011

Business or pleasure?

I was at a very dull meeting last week and wrote this poem

Business or pleasure?

We meet again
Familiar phrases are uttered
The half hidden sighs
From the soul
If it exists
And I wonder
Why bother?We meet
And I wonder
Why bother?

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Cycling on the Edge

Spent most of today cycling, did 59 miles in about 6.5 hours at an average of about 9miles an hour- this equals my best time. Followed my usual training route except for a bit where I got lost and had to double back on myself.

My knees were grumbling a bit at the start (leftover from recent skiing) and I thought they might start to complain very loudly before I got any distance but No it was OK.

It was a beautiful spring day, cloudy at first and then the sun came out and very little wind. Getting lost I came across a beautiful Mere and it was where I ate my sandwiches. Most of the day I was pretty mindless and empty in a really good and peaceful way. I got insight into a couple of work problems which was helpful.

I am so pleased that I can still cycle these distances in this time without my body complaining, I feel blessed.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Dental poem

Dental poem

I am seeing too much of my dentist
It’s an unnatural relationship
He hurts me
I pay him


This wont hurt
Zzzzzzzzzzzt Zzzzzzzzzt
It bloody does!

Dent-al Hy-Gienist
Den-tat Hy-Gienist
Mental Dental!

Friday, 11 March 2011


[I am still writing mystic entries in my pink notebook but saving them off blog for a while for a further edit. The whole thing is coming to a climax and a kind of ending in this first draft soon. I have just downloaded all the blogged entries and that makes 23K words which I want to sit with and cook up some more. It feels like it could even work on the radio]

Regroup was the word, but how to proceed against OM now that his cover was well and truly blown? What if OM published the pictures of him handcuffed to the bed? Maybe they had already. He would be the laughing stock of Manchester, maybe even an overnight Youtube sensation. Maybe App could help him out, maybe get the photos blocked? Maybe even get them deleted from the OM computers. But in any case how could he proceed against OM?
At that moment he received a text message from App on his I-phone Give my luv to J. This text was a prearranged code that told Paul that App had been able to hack into the OM computer system – undetected – and had downloaded some key information. Paul replied as arranged, Sure M8. This message was code for App to email a link to the downloaded material which he had made available on a secure but remote server. All Paul had to do was to access this email from a recently set up hotmail account using an anonymous venue.
[More details of the Om secrets?]
Paul found an internet café nearby and was soon trawling through the information that App had downloaded and unencrypted. Some of the material was rather bland and some rather obscure. OM’s thoughts of the day were insipid and uninspiring apart from a recent one that quoted Jesus saying: ‘Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and one’s foes will be members of one’s own household.’ This quote had always puzzled Paul given that the whole thrust of Jesus’ life and saying were towards peace. But then he thought ‘I am no theologian’.
His musings were interrupted by a discreet cough. Paul quickly closed down the link and turned round to see a rather plump, middle aged, white man with cropped receding grey hair and a thick neck that struggled to escape from an open necked pale blue shirt, grey light weight suit and dull black shoes.
- Paul Whitley?
- Yes?
- Tom Jackson
- Ah (Tom was Micky Flynn’s Santa Barbara contact)
- Let’s take a walk
Paul shut down the computer and followed Tom out of the café and down a side street towards the beach. Tom did a curious routine involving stopping to look in shop windows, abruptly back tracking on himself and wondering into a restaurant and out of the back door. All actions involved to put off any would-be tails. As he told Paul, ‘It’s better to be safe than sorry’ and by meeting on a beach they were less likely to be overheard or recorded. By facing out to sea they wee less likely to be lip read.
- So what can you tell me Paul?
Paul rather shame faced told Tom of his encounter with Melissa, of the handcuffs and the photographs, of his recent escape from the OM hotel and of the material produced by App’s hacking into the OM computer system.
- Hmm… can I take a look at that material?
- Sure, said Paul and Tom produced a Blackberry and typed in the link supplied by App.
Time passed whilst Tom studied App’s downloads. Her grunted from time to time whilst Paul watched the waves come in and out and was lolled into a semi dream state.
- Looks good to me, said Tom, some of this is new, some of it is familiar to me.
- But is it enough the bastards I wonder?
- What do you reckon?
- Maybe not enough to nail the bastards… I don’t know US law in any case, But… is there enough for us to pretend we can nail the bastards in order to squeeze a few of them to turn what we call in Britain ‘Queen’s evidence’
- Right…. Find a few willing to plea bargain so that we can at least nail some of their colleagues and hopefully discredit OM
- I’d still like to get the top man
- X
- Yes
- Me too but I’ll settle for as many as we can get, providing OM goes down the tube, the court cases could last for a long long time
- So how do we do it?
- I want you to go back there (Tom held his hand up in response to Paul’s protests)… go back there. They wont be expecting it. Go back there wired up. I will be nearby with a back up team and if necessary we will come in in force. But I would like to hear how they respond to some of the things that you through at them both from your experiences of last night and from these downloads
- Right… incidentally, how come you found me so easily?
- Well we knew you were coming from Mickey and we are the FBI!
- You’ve been following me?
- Of course!
- Then why didn’t you protect me from Melissa. Well you seemed to be enjoying yourself. And-
- And?
- And we wanted to see how far they would go
- Oh
- Yes you were never in any real danger
- No?
- No… The man who released you from the handcuffs was one of us
- Ah, so when I go back in, you wont just be outside
- No we have been collecting evidence against OM for some time. But now I think it is time to blow this thing open.

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Q again

The Boss once more consults Q his spiritual director. Q was seated in his study come consulting room in front of a warm log fire which was a neat contrast to the cold frost outside. The room was crowded with books and artefacts including a meditation hanging, a fat Buddha statue, a wrought iron Celtic cross and sizeable lumps of amethyst and rose quartz crystals.
- Hi Q
- Hi Boss
- Prayer doesn’t work!
- Oh Yes?
- Yes, I’ve had toothache real bad… have taken pain killers… it took the edge of it but I still couldn’t sleep. So I prayed and nothing happened
- You fell asleep?
- Eventually
- Yes but-
- Nothing happened!
- You got to a dentist?
- Yes but-
- And you are OK now?
- Yes, for the moment
- So was your prayer not answered?
- Well… if you put it like that…. But that’s kind of cheating
- Cheating?
- Cheating! I was so tired it overcame the pain and of course the dentist did her job well
- And all of this is nothing to do with God, nothing to do with prayer?
- Hmm, depends how you see things
- So how do you see things?

Silence and a deep calm enveloped them and there was just a hint of a smile on Q’s face.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Poem: Of boats and bikes

Of boats and bikes

You were always aware of nature
The sun rise
The sun set
The stars
The birds in the garden
And the feel of the wind

There was a sail unfolding
In your memory
So powerful
You never went to sea again

I’ve done my time
On my bike
I’ve felt the wind and the rain
And remember the Big One
Pushing pedals from Cornwall
To North East Scotland

I still feel the wind
And dream of new adventures
The West Coast of North America
Around Ireland
Or alongside the Danube

Al Stewart sang about
The sadness of old admirals
Who feel the wind
But never put to sea

I’m still sailing… for now