5th March

In the end it didn’t snow but it was very cold, wet and windy especially at the back of the house where you took your life into your hands opening the door to let the cats in! it wasn’t much better this morning, but drier and brighter but the car was really buffeted on the way to work.

On the radio Start the Week on Radio 4 was discussing a subject dear to my heart – Middle Age! Some interesting points of view, not all of which I would agree with. Andrew Marr (51) seemed to have a bee in his bonnet about how people who are in middle age now aren’t acting as they should and in his opinion failing the younger generation by, of all things, continuing to listen to music!  He suggested that we should give up everything we are interested in and be Grandparent’s like our Grandparents were – like the world hasn’t moved on in 50 years!

More worryingly were the views of poet Simon Armitage who at 48 reckoned that his most creative days were behind him. This worried me a lot mostly because I feel that I have really only got in touch with my creative side as I have headed into my middle years. I even have occasionally felt the urge to write poetry, probably for the first time since I was 16! I guess for every dozen or so people who find their creative muse in their younger years there are a couple of people like me who don’t find the confidence until later in life – this wasn’t discussed!

I was intrigued by the discussion as to why the years seem to speed up as you get older. I’d always thought it was because as a percentage of your life 1 year at age 5 would be 20% of your life but only 2% at my age. This however is probably incorrect as if it were the case then a day would also seem to get shorter as we got older. Claudia Hammond is a psychologist has produced a theory where she says that this phenomenon is due to what she called telescoping – where we look back at our past as though we are looking through a telescope and sometimes we perceive that things happened more recently than they did because the memory is more vivid. There was also the description that time will appear pass more slowly if we fill our lives with activities and new experiences and fly past if we sit around doing nothing. Also the further away we consider old age to be the more likely we are to live a long life, in other words if we don’t feel old or perceive we are getting old then we won’t!

One thing that struck me, going back to the discussion about listening to music in middle age, was the idea that as we enter old age we constantly listen to the music that we knew from our youth. I find this a lot on Facebook, people of my age posting links to youtube videos of the music they would have listened to in their teens, usually with a note to the effect of “remember this one?” To me music has been a lifelong passion, and contrary to what was suggested I’m still am on the voyage of discovery I started in my teens. I don’t listen to the same music I did then, the majority of music I listen to I’ve never heard before and may never hear again. I always just want to post new tracks on those forums and say “why don’t you listen to something new you stupid bastards!”

The English may not like music, but they absolutely love the noise it makes

image

Beautiful light this evening lit up the usually drab houses opposite the office. I was going to take a picture but when I came out I discovered that I couldn’t see from the ground floor. However as I turned the corner I saw the above wonderful “God effect” sunset.

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