Showing posts from January, 2009

On Being British

I love being British. Much as I love America (and I do) I am very happy to live in a country where we don't have hurricanes, earthquakes, guns or fifteen-year-olds driving cars, and I rejoice in free healthcare, the BBC, and being able to get from anywhere to anywhere else by car in less than a day. Of course we also don't have Disneyworld, Taco Bell or drive-through banks and post offices.

I am well aware that most of my readers will be American. I think the map on the right proves that fairly conclusively. I could go on for weeks about the differences between the Brits and the Americans – in culture, outlook and language, but I’m going to choose not to. There are plenty of other blogs, sites and books on the subject - I especially recommend Bill Bryson’s Notes from a Big Country and Notes from a Small Island. Until I find I’ve run out of material and need to comment on the fact that “momentarily” here means “just for a split second” but “in a few minutes” there, I will leave…

On Barack Obama

I'm not American, but I couldn't help noticing that you've had some interesting goings-on over there. For one thing, a brand shiny new President, a very good-looking and charistmatic chappie whom everyone seems to like, even those who didn't vote for him.

I have no clue how American politics work. I once asked some American friends to explain the policies of each Presidential candidate to me so that I could work out who I would vote for were I entitled to do so. Basically, I explained, I would vote for the one who is going to ban abortion and guns, and bring in a free healthcare service like the NHS we rejoice in here. Apparently that was neither of them, so I would probably have been forced to abstain.

I find myself liking Barack Obama too, and not just because of the brave new world "I have a dream" thingy. (It's less of a big deal here because we never had the kind of racism America did. My theory is that it's because the British empire, at its heigh…

On Blue Monday

I wrote my last entry on Monday 19th January, and discovered, after writing it, that the day was known as "Blue Monday". Apparently someone has worked out that 19th January is the most depressing day in the year. It's cold and dark, Christmas is over, and the credit card bills for the excesses are appearing on doormats across Britain and in mailboxes across America. With this pesky credit crunch, banks making record losses, house prices falling and redundancy rates skyrocketing, this same bigwig reckons it's the most depressing Blue Monday ever.

Well, pardon me if I beg to differ. By all accounts it might have been a bad day for me. My family thrashed me at Wii Monopoly (still the only game I'm any good at), I discovered that the new kitchen being delivered next month is two units and a worktop short, and I started a diet club and found that I my BMI is 27, which classifies me as overweight, and only two points short of obese. Furthermore, Blue Monday was the fift…

On Blogging

A year ago I didn't know what a blog is. Now I am the proud owner of one, and have only to figure out what to do with it. I like to think of myself as a writerly type, but coming up with something witty and inspirational three times a week is going to be a real challenge. All suggestions gratefully received.

The great Kerry Blair ( wrote such moving, funny and entertaining blogs that our publisher, Covenant, asked for permission to publish them. The result is her bestselling book, Counting Blessings. Kerry is such a talented writer than her fans would buy anything she wrote. I include myself among them, and I am currently bidding on her shopping list. To such I aspire.

It strikes me that finding time to write is going to a be a problem. I'm not mathematically minded, but here's how my time is supposed to play out:
We are told that we need at least 8 hours sleep a night. That's 56 hours a week.I work a five hour day at LawCare. That's 25 hours a week…