(Golden)Twit Twoo, Here’s Lookin’ at You

I think this blog needs a little warning; if you do not use Twitter, some of this may be lost on you, but it’s childs play. Read on and you’ll see, it’s dead simple.

It’s that time of year again; the central heating is cranked back on, you lay awake all night coughing and then when it is time to get up, it’s pitch black and chilly. Bed seems like a much nicer option and I find it increasingly hard to get up on a winters morning. But this morning it was all different; I dragged myself out of bed after cowering under my duvet for a good five minutes. With stiff ankles cracking and sleep blurring my vision, I stumbled over to my laptop. Through the blur, I could see that not only had I received a #followfriday at 5.49am, someone had nominated me for a GoldenTwit award.

Now, I don’t really subscribe to this #followfriday mullarkey; does anyone ever see it and actually follow me off the back of it? I’m not sure that they do, but it’s lovely to be recommended by people. Even if they are your friends and you would make their lives miserable if they did not. It’s just nice to have someone saying something nice about you.

Until this morning, I wasn’t aware of The GoldenTwit awards. I had no idea what they were, but I was delighted to find that I had been nominated for one. I don’t have thousands of followers, but I like to think that all 116 of them were in for the long haul and enjoyed my twerping. So I clicked on the link to explore the GoldenTwits and I was welcomed into a world that celebrates the little things people say. Some of the best things have been said in 140 characters; there is a reason that the likes of Oscar Wilde and Mark Twain were so concise. Obviously not all of their best quotes fit into 140 characters, but that is why the likes of WordPress exist. Micro blogging and ordinary blogging go hand in hand; I couldn’t live my life in 140 characters, but it’s a great way to amuse and abuse your friends.

So it seems all the Twitter Greats have been nominated for the GoldenTwit awards; David Schneider, Mrs Stephen Fry and David Cameroon (@TheFuckingPM) are all there. I realise that I am not anywhere near their level of greatness, but I would be delighted if all my lovely friends voted for me regardless. (All is fair in love and twitter.)

When I went onto the GoldenTwit website, I discovered that I had to answer some questions, in order to win people’s votes. The questions were as follows:

Why do you deserve a Golden Twit award?

When tweeting, what are your objectives?

What have you achieved?

What’s your favourite Twitter application?

Why should people vote for you?

How would you describe twitter to non-tweeters?

Now it is all very well amusing people as a by-product of entertaining yourself and chatting to your friends, but this is a lot more scary. Answering these questions with just 140 characters is incredibly pressuring; suddenly I have to be funny on demand. Dance for me monkey! I like to think that my tweets entertain now and then, but I do not soley write them for that purpose. So I have spent my evening trying to work out the best thing to write? Do they expect me to be sincere or humerous? Did they want me to genuinely try and win people over?

I tried to answer the questions seriously, but in all honesty, I have not managed to achieve anything in my twitter life and I don’t really have any objectives for goodness sake. Twitter is a subconscious thing, it is like talking or thinking and not something I use for business. So, I decided to bluff over my obvious inadequacies with sarcasm and flippancy.

What did I write? Well, you’ll have to pop on over to http://www.goldentwits.com/user/SillyBry to have a gander. (Oh and if you don’t vote for me while you are there… well, I will be having words. Except that I probably will be too embarrassed, so I’ll just ignore it in that irritating British way. But I’ll think some pretty nasty things.)


The discovery of the real “you” does not lie within the journey, but in the packing.

Everyone talks about going travelling to broaden the mind or discovering the real “you”, but having spent an entire day packing for various different occasions, I have come to the conclusion that your inner self is hiding at the bottom of the rucksack.

Packing is, in itself, a journey. You begin, full of excitement for your forthcoming trip. You are resolute that you will pack lightly and not take unnecessary stuff with you. So you grab yourself a bag and begin to plan your days. Everything is going to plan, until one thing occurs to you: what happens if it rains? You have only packed for good weather! So then you grab a few jumpers and long-sleeved tops out. But a jumper doesn’t go with shorts, you’ll have to pack jeans as well.

So now, you’ve got more outfits than you have days and your empty suitcase is surrounded by piles of clothing. You’ve lost control, you start throwing all your favourites in, just in case. You’ve put a swimsuit in, not because you’ll have a chance to swim, but you don’t want to be caught without. Then you’ve got a coat, jumper and thick trousers, because you never know when the weather will turn. In the Med. You’ve got both pairs of flip flops, not so you can go out with solely flip flips or flop flops, but just so that you can decide on the day, which pair you will wear.

The excitement of going on holiday is starting to fade as you realise you have to decide what to take. Suddenly your bag seems woefully small and your clothes inadequately large. You sink down on the bed, bored of all of this, dreaming of it being finished and getting to your destination. You lose all will to pack and distract yourself by turning your out of office on, making sure your bank account is correct and all those really important, but unnecessary things.

In a moment of panic, you turn reluctantly back to your packing. Sensibly, you throw some stuff aside and then work out how to cram everything in. It is only when you’ve just managed to inch the zip closed, by lying across the case, that you realise you’ve forgotten underwear, a toothbrush and your toothpaste. The next mission, should you choose to accept it, is to start trying to poke things in through that gap in the zip.

I can talk about this so knowingly because last night I packed a bag for a 2 day stay in Edinburgh followed by a week in rural Scotland, working at Blair Horse Trials. Thankfully, for the main, this involved work clothes, which have been printed especially for the occasion. Easy; although, last year, it did rain like a dog, so I have packed a few extras to try to stop myself from drowning. Then I have thrown a few nice clothes in for Edinburgh and my GHDs for the trip. Where it starts to get difficult is that I will be at V Festival immediately before, so I have had to work out what I will need for both and which bits I can take where. It has been a logistical nightmare, and that is before I started packing ten boxes full of lab equipment and all of its accoutrements for the work side of it.

What have I discovered today? Every packing experience takes you on a journey of excitement, disillusionment and disappointment. Forget the holiday, I’ve travelled enough before I’ve even left.

Is this how Shakespeare felt?

Despite a love of English literature as a whole, there are obviously some parts than I love and some that I loathe. I have never been a fan of poetry; obviously there are some parts that I really like, but they tend to be the simple stuff like Betjeman. (If you ask anyone what poet they really like, I guarantee you that it’ll be one they studied. Noone seems to travel outside of their studies in the world of poetry. I find it far easier to name poets that I dislike; Pound, Bishop and Dove are ones that spring to mind. (I can just hear my personal tutor at uni telling me off as I write this.)

When it comes to drama though, I’m a completely different kettle of fish. I love drama of all ages and types. I love the good old renaissance stuff – Shakespeare, Marlowe, Jonson and that malarkey. Then the modern stuff is brilliant too – Pinter, Stoppard, Osborne and I could go on, but I risk losing my (one) reader. I don’t know whether it is because you can visualise drama in front of you and can envisage how the characters would react or whether it is just because I’m too stupid to look for the hidden meanings and messages in all that dreary poetry. You can shape drama however you like; half of the interpretation can be created in the performance. (Wow, my old tutor, Grace would be proud of me.)

I also love performance, whether it is comedy or drama, I love seeing something live. Seeing something live always involves risk, especially in a lot of the improv shows that I like to see – they could mess up, but surely that’s the excitement? If you get to see them make a mistake or corpse, you have seen something that hundreds of others have missed. I would rather see people take the risk trying to create something amazing and failing slightly than see something mediocre that is the same, night on night.

I think this is what was running through my mind on the evening that I volunteered to write a play. Whilst I was at uni, I had a go at writing some comedy and scripts with comedy compadre (and ex-blogger) Jo. Sadly, we only realised about our common love and ambition in our third year, so we never managed to be a part of any tacky uni revues or the such like. Still, we spent far longer on our uni based comedy than we did on our actual work. It didn’t come to anything, but we had such fun writing it and imagining it. So in a momentary pause between all the mad things I am trying to cram into my life at the moment, I sat down on twitter to find the Director of the Nottingham Comedy Festival asking Jo to write a play. The phrase that comes to mind for what I did next is “speak in haste, repent at leisure.” I daftly volunteered that we would write a play. But Helen, the lovely NCF Director, seems to have taken us very seriously. She has offered to cast it and direct it, which means that we really do have to write something.

All of this sounds like I don’t want to do it and I do, but I’m petrified. For a start, I am so manically busy for the next month, I can’t even remember my own name without getting in a flap, let alone penning a play. But the most terrifying part of it is, what if it’s appalling? What if it turns out that neither Jo or I can write for diddly squat? I’m not sure that I’m ready to find that out just yet. I really love the modern style plays where it is very static and not much happens, which is handy as they say you must write about what you know and it turns out, I know very little. Seriously though, I really like the kind of plays where very little happens and I happened upon the scripts of Jim Sweeney’s plays on his website, which has been a godsend. The way the characters speak sounds so natural and it made me realise that not that much has to happen to make a really interesting story.

So, after some brainstorming and waking up in the middle of the night, I have had some promising ideas. Now to turn those ideas into a reality in between the bouts of regret, self hatred, doubt and diminishing confidence. I’m sure everyone has the same feelings before they begin writing. Is this how bloody Shakespeare felt before he started his first play?

God made everyone right handed. Only the truly gifted can overcome it.

Picture the scene; it is a cold, frosty early nineties December morning and you are looking at a small suburban primary school. Moving in closer, you can see the six and seven year olds sitting around the miniature tables and flecks of tissue paper sitting in pools of glue where they are attempting the gargantuan task of creating snowflakes, paper chains and other Christmas decorations. All of which, incidentally, invokes every adult to coo appropriately just before throwing them immediately in the bin. In the midst of the children sits a little girl, whose glitter and glue coated hands are clasped uselessly around some now grubby paper and a pair of safety scissors. The paper has now stuck itself to the little girl’s hands and is now torn and bereft of its decorative beauty. But this doesn’t matter because no matter how hard she tries, she cannot cut that clean, sharp line through the paper, slicing it in neatly in half. She holds the scissors in her left hand, but alas the blade is set upside down this way. She must either get someone else to cut it for her or she will have to suffice with an inferior creation. She cannot join in.

A few days later, the class is learning to write and this little girl is struggling no end. She is trying to follow the teachers’ instructions, but she cannot work out how to replicate the letters. She tries turning the paper sideways, which allows her more space to curve her pencil round and craft the letters, but then the teacher comes along, straightens the paper and tells her that she must make her work neater. She looks at the letters earnestly, bites her bottom lip and tries again. This will keep happening to her as she goes through her school life; teachers try desperately to get them to tidy up their writing, but not really knowing how to help. As she moves from the pencil (whose lead is so oft snapped from the heavy pressing from the little girl’s left hand) to the pen, she encounters a whole new set of problems; as she writes, the palm of her hand covers the freshly penned ink. It would take a good few weeks for her to work out how to write without getting ink coated hands and her life’s work illegibly smudged. Eventually, the little girl will establish a writing style and work out how to write in a legible way, but it will take her a great deal more time than the other “normal” boys and girls.

As the little girl grows older and she moves to secondary school, she finds herself having to take sports lessons and it is here that she finds more prejudice. She will always have to stand at the far end of the line when throwing the javelin or discus in order to prevent any untimely accidents. Equally, she will have to wait until the end of the lesson before she is allowed to practice a lay-up in basketball as all of the cones have to be changed to the alternate direction.

It is tales such as these and many others, which begin to show you how difficult it can be to be different. Most kids would have adapted and given up trying to survive as a leftie in a right-handed world, but this little girl didn’t know how. She wears her watch on her right wrist, plays tennis with her left hand, always has the element of surprise in a game of rounders and her writing is like that of a doctor. She has learnt to cope and has overcome adversity in a way that no right hander has managed – they do not realise the struggles inherent in opening a can of baked beans, of being taught sports and musical instruments by a right handed person or of trying to write a cheque in a normal chequebook.

The left handed people of the world have had a lot of stick over the years with many modern languages translating the words wrong or evil as a synonym of left. (I bet David Cameron loved that!) Modern day slang for being left handed is “cack handed”, which sounds fine until you remember that cack basically means shit. They believed that left handedness could cause stuttering, dyslexia and schizophrenia. Some doctors still believe this stuff today; the modern quacks think that we are more likely to get breast cancer and allergies.

For years, children were beaten and made to sit on their left hand at school so as to change them to a conventional and “normal” child. It seems strange that people felt so strongly that people should be right handed that they beat it out of our left handed forefathers (and mothers.) So why did they feel so strongly? Were they threatened by us? Damned right they were; people of the left handed persuasion are said to use the artistic side of our brain far more than the rest of you. Not only do we have more access to our creativity, but we are also natural leaders and strive for independence. Only 10% of the population is left handed, yet 4 out of the 5 Apple Mac designers were left handed and 66% of the American Presidents of the past 30 years have been lefties.

Most of the best people in the world are left handed; Barack Obama, David Cameron, Rafael Nadal, Dan Aykroyd, Emma Thompson, Sue Perkins, Julian Clary, Jonathan Ross, John McEnroe and most famously, Maradona! As I say, it’s great to be left handed – there aren’t many of us, but most of them have made it to the top of their field. If you are left handed, don’t let the majority oppress you. Don’t let them stop the revolution that us lefties will bring; we are what they fear most and never forget that!

Reasons to be Cheerful

This week I have a brutal and honest confession to make; I could not think of a single thing to write about. I had a lovely long weekend camping in Porlock, where I ate and drank copious amounts whilst watching the world go by. It was bliss. Well, as blissful as going camping with 14 toddlers can be, but you get the idea. However, I have started to realise that happiness and satisfaction don’t, in general, provide the easiest blogs and entertaining stories. After a couple of hopeless appeals on twitter, I turned to a blog generator, which gave me some surprising results. The first few were a little serious; preventing global warming and animal rights were not topics I could even begin to think about in my weekly rant. Thankfully, the next proved a little more light hearted; reasons not to move in with someone.

Lately there have been a worrying amount of discussions about how it is “ok” that I am not married yet. Damned right it’s “ok”, I’m twenty three years old and God willing, I have a good few years left in me to find someone to marry. The most upsetting part of the subsequent conversation is that the joking element seems to have disappeared and in its place is now a tilted head and sympathetic nod. Calm down everyone, I haven’t stopped shaving and put in an application for a cattery just yet and it’s only on the odd occasion that I worry about being single. So, for the most part, I am happy as I am and this is why…

Let’s start with the material benefits; I don’t have a mortgage or a wedding to save up for, all my money is my own. I can spend my monthly morsels on anything I want to. A good portion of it disappears into the horses before I can blink. Once you’ve paid for the farrier, feed, hay, bedding and entry fees, that’s about half of my pay slip gone. Especially after the other bills have come out such as phone bills, the monthly Amazon shop, a couple of nights out at the store and I’m not left with that much. Quite frankly, I don’t think I could afford to live with or getting married to someone at this point.

This moves me nicely on to my next point; I spend all week doing the things that I enjoy. Why would I want to give that up? Going on past experience, boyfriends don’t really seem to understand that when you say you just want  to veg out in front of the tv, you mean without them. You just want a night off. Or perhaps that just shows my poor choice of blokes in the past? They get offended if you fancy a night in your pyjamas, eating junk food and watching your favourite trash tv. Who has tried to watch those tv programmes you never admit to watching with a partner? It’s just awful, they talk through it, you feel embarrassed and wonder why you started watching Waterloo Road in the first place. There are just some things you do on your own. Likewise, I spend my weekends competing, seeing comedy and catching up with my friends. I don’t have time to fit someone else in as well. Quite honestly, I’m far too selfish to have someone else to love and care for at the moment – they would get bored of me in five minutes flat.

Apart from those reasons, once I do manage to trap somebody into marrying me, I am going to have to live with them for a bloody long time, so I may as well enjoy my freedom. Having said that, I don’t want to sound like a man hater, I’d be quite happy for a handsome bloke to come and sweep me off my feet, but sadly, they always seem to have a bad back or some other ailment to stop this happening. Maybe I should have listened to the last one and married him like he seemed to think he wanted, but would I be happy? Hell no, I would have missed out on the best, most independent years of my life. And I’d still be trying to concoct a way of dumping him, but panicking that now we’d got a bit more serious, it was a teensy bit harder.

I’m a great believer of fate and these things will happen, when they do and that is no reason to stop me enjoying myself in the meantime. Of course, when I meet the man of my dreams, I’ll have to rein myself in a little, but I will because it will be for the man that I love, which is why I’m attempting to cram all my favourite things in now whilst I can. Don’t feel upset or sad about the position that you are in, instead remember that the grass is never greener. Think of your older brother, brother in law, uncle father, whoever and that may give you an insight into your future. Men leave the toilet seat up, they never replace the loo roll, they will put dirty plates into the clean dishwasher, put coloured socks into the white washing and generally remind you that even if we are not the more intelligent gender, we are certainly the most hardworking.

So I’m a dillylaplodochiphobic. And what?

I normally consider myself to be a relatively laid back and placid person, sometimes to my detriment. I’m all for an easy life and if I can do something to stop arguments and disagreements, I’ll do it. Equally, I don’t really get het up or wound about things; I don’t scream hysterically about spiders or earwigs because they just can’t harm me. If I lived in Australia however, I can assure you I would be very different!

There are a few things that do really wind me up and none of them are rational or have any rhyme or reason. I shall endeavour to share some of my most hated things and perhaps you will understand, nod knowingly and not judge me. You are well within your rights to cackle like an imbecile and cast me aside from your address book forever more, such is the insanity of my little niggles. (No, that is not supposed to be a euphemism.) I know a lot of these probably have long and exciting names, but I can’t be bothered with that nonsense. I’m sure it’s just someone with a sense of humour inventing them; afterall hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia is a fear of long words. Bastard.

Ok, so we’ll start with a pretty standard one; clowns. Everyone is scared of clowns right? Well, they should be. For a start, their makeup is worse than that of Pat Butcher and less subtle than Katie Price. Anyone that has a thick, white crust of makeup slapped across their face has to be hiding something. There is the old cliché about the tears of a clown, but it has to come from somewhere. They are going out dressed as someone else, picking on small children; they cannot be happy in themselves. If you are in any doubt, don’t forget their past history; John Wayne Gacy, or “Pogo the Clown” as he liked to be known, who abused and murdered 33 teenage boys. I think that all those American horror movies involving clowns ought to make us suspicious enough about them before we even think about the real life psychos.

My next fear is possibly less normal; Weetabix. I’m sure a lot of you dislike Weetabix, but does the mere smell of it make you nauseous? It’s pathetic. I’m twenty three years old and I ought to know better, but I am an irrational, nervous wreck when it comes to this particular brand of breakfast cereal. I think what put me off Mephistopheles’ munch was a year 7 school trip, where I ate the most dry Weetabix without a drink; I was picking that junk out of my braces for weeks. First of all, we’ll start with the taste. I don’t actually remember what Weetabix tastes like it’s been so long since I’ve eaten it, but I do remember that it manages to suck every little bit of liquid from your body, so you are left chewing dry, mulch for what seems like years. It is so unbelievably dense that I cannot believe that it is sold as food. As far as I can tell, the only purpose for Weetabix is as bricks in areas at risk of flooding. All the liquid would be soaked up by the wheaty biscuits and the houses would stay as try as a bone.

I know what you are thinking; if you don’t like it, don’t buy it. Unfortunately, I have young nieces and nephews who eat it. It takes a great deal of self-control for me to feed it to them; even the feeling of it getting under your nails as you pull it from the pack is enough to set me on edge. Cooking it gives it one of the worst smells in the world; it smells like a rat died in the microwave and then quicker than a builder’s cement, it has turned into a solid lump of mulch. It seems to climb out of the bowl and glue itself to your fingers so that you will unknowingly get that lukewarm, vomit smelling concrete onto your lips. It is food of the worst order. I would rather go hungry than eat Weetabix. It has got to the point that I feel a bit nauseous just handling it.

The final hatred that I will unleash on you today is of those TWATSS. For everyone who is unaware of what that means (which is everyone bar me) it is Tossers Who Abbreviate Totally Stupid Stuff. None of you knew what I was talking about, which I expect made you feel a little bit of inferiority, loathing and jealousy. I say a bit because you may not know that you felt that way, but you definitely did, even if it was subconsciously. When I was younger, LOL and ROFL were the choice phrases, but realistically we only used it when we had nothing better to say. As a regular twitterer, I have noticed that I’m behind the times and the favoured phrases of today seem to be FTW (for the win) and FML/FMW (fuck my life/week). Firstly, for the win doesn’t make sense! I have never heard anyone utter the complete phrase for the win. As for FML, has life got so damned terrible that you can’t even utter three monosyllabic words? Get a spine.

Within this hatred, I shall include people who use “text language”. I can cope with people sending me text messages in long hand text language, even if I don’t partake in the practice myself. I understand that is what it is there for, even if I would rather spend the extra ten pence and explain myself properly. But where it really gets on my wick, my goat and everything else, is in email and normal writing. Perhaps it is the difference between someone who writes with a love of words and someone who writes to get information across. But words aren’t difficult to use, you can use them to make people laugh, cry, love you and hate you. What’s not to like about that? It allows the shy people to feel big and clever and occasionally superior against the illiterate, mouthy sods.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not one of those fascists who are intent on keeping English from changing; the language has to move and mould itself along with the society and culture it is within, just use it properly. That sounds incredibly hard-line and typical of an English graduate, but I don’t mean to be cruel. I am as likely to misuse words as anyone else (my friends will attest to that); I just wish people would appreciate them more. Don’t just use them to hurriedly pass information across to someone else, slow down and appreciate their magnificence. The world is built on words (and perhaps numbers.)

It is these hatreds and fears that make us the individuals we are, and I’m definitely individual; how many other people do you know that get in a cold sweat if a clown sent them a poorly written text message proffering weetabix?

The worst winter I ever suffered was summer in Britain.

As a society, we hold summer as this wonderful, much fabled, blissful time. A time when we sit on sun loungers, read literary classics that we’ve previously only bent the spines of (so as to appear well-thumbed to the discerning passer-by), get a glorious, yet natural sun tan and basically live the good life. How many of us think of summer as a time when we can invite the world round for a barbeque, where everyone will reminisce about times gone by and laugh whilst sipping at their Pimms?

Of course, we must be realistic and remember that we live in the United Kingdom. We all fail to remember how just bringing the BBQ out of the shed will hit the automatic rain switch. Despite the many, many government adverts, we also forget that cooking chicken on a barbeque is an instant no no as everyone will peel open the meat and start searching, beady eyed, for a spot of pink to panic about. Another bone of contention is the idea of giving a group of people alcohol; there will be no witty or entertaining discussion, just tension as the group driver attempts to play UN peacekeeper between the ranks. Everyone dresses hopelessly optimistically in shorts, skirts, flip flops and other holiday paraphernalia completely forgetting that by day, they will be covered in insect bites and by night, they will freeze.

Being British, the humble barbeque isn’t the only excuse we use to have a good drink, and let’s face it, summer drinking is so much nicer than winter drinking. In the winter, we hibernate in the dark corners of pubs whereas in the summer, we can sit in the garden drinking Pimms, which is practically healthy. Afterall, it provides at least three of your five fruit and vegetables a day. Another great love of the summertime is the festival. Despite going to university in Reading, I have managed to reach the age of 23 without having been to a proper festival. However, I have horses and often spend weekends away competing, so I understand the concept. In the months leading up to the event, you are filled with that dreamy romanticism of sitting outside your tent/lorry drinking Magners and watching the sun go down after a day of music/competition. In reality, it always rains and you hide inside your tent, which is by the way far wetter on the inside, swigging from a tin of Strongbow. Life is never quite what you plan.

This year, I will be going to the V Festival for my first experience. I have no preconceptions about it; I know it’ll rain and we’ll be wet, but I think I’m quite hardened to that. Shamefully I’m not a really musical person; I love listening to it, but I am so incredibly tone deaf and tone dumb that I can’t possibly understand it. Regardless of that, the lineup is full of bands that I like and I’m sure it will be a lovely relaxing weekend with great company.

It strikes me as odd that everyone thinks that summer is so wonderful. It’s not like spring, which is alive with the buds and flowers shooting up (please, no drug jokes) or autumn where everything turns a wonderful golden, auburn colour and the leaves crunch underfoot. It’s not as though people look forward to the weather; if it’s too hot, they complain they can’t work in that heat and it’s not as though the British ever holiday in their own country. We would much rather fly three hours to sit on a beach surrounded by other British people, all trying to turn ourselves golden and ending up redder than that light you got caught driving through the other day. Our summers are very dry, so the grass turns yellow and dies, I don’t understand why people get sad in the winter and yet they are happy about the summer.

I am not particularly affected by any of the seasons, I consider that I am fairly happy in all of them. However, my lifestyle changes dramatically depending on them. In the summer, I base my weekends around my horses. I love being outside as much as possible and I enjoy competing them. I am not as competitive as I was as a child, but I love going out and seeing my friends and sharing the show banter. In my current job, I have to work relatively long days (8.30 to 5.30), which isn’t a problem in the summer as I can still ride after work, but in the winter, I haven’t got a chance of riding more than two or three days a week. That takes the notion of competing out of the equation, so I have adapted my winter accordingly and spend time with another love of mine. Comedy. What better thing is there to do of a dark, wet winter’s evening than find yourself some comedy? Whether it’s a big well known comedian in a large theatre or a several unknown open spots in a tiny pub, it’s can be the best way to spend an evening.

I still find time to go and see comedy in the summer, but it plays second string to competitions, whereas in the winter, it is the focus of the weekend. Like everyone in the world, I work to earn the money to do the things I desire and as such I live for the weekends. I always have something to do whether it is writing, watching new programmes, going to gigs or spending time with my horses it doesn’t matter what season it is. Summer tends to be so over-rated. The minute the clocks change, everyone expects the world to dramatically turn into summer. Well here I am, in the supposed summer time bunged up with cold, feeling terrible and spring cleaning my room. I could just as easily be doing that in the winter. Life is what you make it. You can’t let the weather and the seasons dictate your mood; it is up to you to find your happy medium.

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