day of your life
matter how unexceptional)
matter how fleeting).
My friend Nicholas Creswell tweeted something wonderful to me the other week:
“I do find my most treasured and vivid memories tend to be those I’ve not photgraphed."
I fully agree with these words. How we feel in and about key moments is not all about how they look. Any image is but the surface of what is really happening in the moment.
But that is not to devalue the image. Sometimes just the surface of things is enough to bring joy, to change the way you feel. Even if just momentarily.
Social media is of course all about the moment. The flow of words and images is constant as a river. The mind can bathe in this river, or ignore what’s going on now, confident that the next moment will be along… in just a moment. The moment passes swiftly on social media. The next moment is always upon us.
This week I thought I’d try looking back at brief moments from the past seven days, mostly moments that happened via social media. Some of these moments had already passed into memory, some had passed from memory. It was nice to be reminded.
Give energy to other people: A week in social media moments
Saturday 29 July 2017. My wife and I took the dog-in-law for a walk in the local country park. The rain bucketed down. The sound of the unrelenting precipitation in the otherwise silent park was dreamlike.
When I got home, I chatted on Twitter with my friend Poonam Munshi about the loveliness of rain, in which I learnt the following wonderful word: “Petrichor.” (Worth grabbing a dictionary to look up if, like I hadn’t, you’ve not heard this word before). Poonam said:
“The sound n the rhythm of rain. Petrichor. Greenery. Sigh 🙂 it’s lovely monsoon here in Bombay as well.”
Sunday 30 July 2017. I made an early morning pilgrimage to Arthur Conan Doyle. Recent rains had left tear-like rivulets across his face. In the afternoon I drew the phoenixulent bird sketch at the top of this page.
Monday 31 July 2017. Down but not out. A one-armed Iron Man rebuilding his energies to fight another day by a flowerbed at the train station near my work.
Tuesday 1 August 2017. This new month began with the most glorious of sunrises (witnessed here from my back garden).
Wednesday 2 August 2017. I have a very long commute. This means I get through a lot of podcasts. Via a tweeted recommendation, I spent a few commutes this week engrossed in an extremely long conversation between filmmaker Kevin Smith and mixed martial artist/ stand-up comedian/ podcaster/ TV host/ father/ philosopher/ stoner Joe Rogan*. Towards the end of the second part, Rogan sets out his views on remaking your world and your life in the way that works best for you:
"You can manifest your own reality with your imagination. Well you can, with work. But it’s work. It’s not just thinking about it. It’s work. But it’s also with the way you interface with life. That’s a big part of it. Interface with life in a way where you’re having the most enjoyment and the least amount of stress.”
Rogan argues that we need to work to avoid negativity, stress and abuse in our daily interactions with the world. He continues:
“Gravitate towards positive things and interface with reality in a way that you benefit from and that you can help other people to benefit. […] Whatever the fuck it is you do, find that thing and just fucking enjoy the shit out of it. And in the process of enjoying the shit out of it, you’ll give energy to other people.”
Thursday 3 August 2017. I had the privilege of getting to take care of Sundae and Praline on my own. Uncharacteristically, not a fweep was to be heard at the prospect of their lettuceful repast, nor during their consumption thereof. But I am pleased to reassure you that the fweeping resumed soon after.
Later I got to watch a tremendous comic and tragic little TV play – scripted by the brilliant David Quantick – about what might have happened if John Lennon had quit the Beatles in 1962. I came across this via a tweet from John Rain, who hosts the highly-recommended SmershPod podcast**. Lucky you, you can delight in this Snodgrassful Lennon imagining right now:
Friday 4 August 2017. My friend Kate Griffiths-Lambeth shared a great quotation about the power of community:
“Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much” – Helen Keller. Thank you for including me with these amazing people.
Saturday 5 August 2017. The moment is now. Writing these words, listening to the Ex Machina soundtrack and sipping rather strong coffee. Looking forward to sharing this post. I write for the pure love of writing. If anything I scribble might ever give a tiny iota of energy to someone else, I would be delighted. But I’d still be writing these words even if no-one were ever to read them.
Part one here and part two here. Be warned, this goes on forever… and contains – to put it mildly – both language and opinions toward the stronger end of the spectrum. As much as I love it, I don’t necessarily expect anyone else to!).
** SmershPod is a hilarious revisiting and dissection of old Bond films. I came across it via a tweeted link to the episode on Moonraker, which guest stars Al Murray, and a link to which was considerately tweeted during ITV’s recent screening of said Mooresterpiece. SmershPod is out and out brilliant.