As I walked along to the company car park with a colleague, I was listening as she explained how she’d cut back on her news consumption and also certain satirical programmes. This wasn’t through a lack of interest; no, more accurately, it was too much interest and the effect of the weight of the world upon her shoulders. The conversation ended as she headed to one end of the car park (with a cheery goodbye), and me to the other. For Northern readers, feel free to use the t’other word instead. 🙂

I reached my own car and after pausing briefly to admire the very beautiful Wolf Moon that loomed large in the night sky, I thought about my own behaviour of late. I stopped listening to the news on the radio on the way to work about five months ago. I can’t recall the last time I’ve watched an actual news programme on television. I will read the BBC News app’s daily briefing post and I stop scrolling when we get to whatever the press are writing about. I can count the number of times I’ve bought a newspaper on one hand and still have fingers spare to raise to some of our ‘great’ leaders. 😉

I used to think that if I listened to the news, I’d have an idea of what was going on, and in part, I’d not be too baffled when certain stories were covered by my favourite comedy/satire podcasts. Now, I think I’ve just withdrawn – like social media – and you know what, I don’t really miss it. Part of me feels I should take an interest in the world and I am, just not via that lens. I feel I should be more bothered, but back when I did try to do things, it didn’t feel like I could reach very far and the whole process felt very disempowering.

Instead, I’m bumbling along in my own little world, just doing my own thing and trying to do good when I can. That might be doing some trans outreach stuff via Chams, listening to folk at work talk about their issues, or cut through the red tape in our organisation to get something done. Perhaps it is as a work-make said with a twinkle in his eye: it’s the little victories, Mr Jones.

Maybe there’s something in that. Maybe whatever you can do to push back against the seemingly endless bleakness reported, that each tiny act of kindness or happy moment is in some mad way an act of raising those two fingers (North American readers may wish to use singular middle digit instead 😉 ).

Ignoring said media malarkey and nay-saying, the first visit to Chams of the year went very well. I had the luxury of working from home (kid care plus the Ever Lovely Mrs J and I had an appointment elsewhere) in which I got a lot of stuff done. Funny how not being in the office can motivate you! 🙂 That meant I missed on queueing in traffic, so there was enough time to sort out the tea and have a hot shower before packing a bag.

I love my new Mary Jane shoes. They are so comfy and that’s with a heel as well. The lighting makes them – and the jeans – look black, but they’re both blue. The top is new and from the sale, and while the other two items I chanced on didn’t quite work for me, the postage is less than parking in town. So, something ventured, something gained, and nothing lost. That’s a win in my book 🙂

With the Christmas rush of parties and plays, the usual crew were back at Chameleons and it was great to catch up with folk. We managed to be out on time and Val was kind enough to work her photo magic. All in all, a very good night out.

L x


  1. News coverage has changed. They have to “fill the space” as cheaply as possible, so it always sames to be the same stuff over and over again. This makes coverage seem like a treadmill, and most of us turn off until something happens that specifically piques our interest. I’ve recently decided to try a subscription to the Telegraph web edition – usually look at lunchtime – and mostly read the opinion columns: some days I’ll agree, many I won’t, but at least these people are thinking about the news, rather than just repeating the same story over and over again, needlessly standing on the pavement outside a closed building.

    1. Yes, the rolling news situation doesn’t help as it can feel there’s no escape from the noise or nonsense. That and the idea of balance when A) the situation is far more complex than Choice One or Choice Two, and when Choice Two is some fringe theory given equal credence (climate change, anti vac woo, etc).

      I think reading the opinion pieces where it’s a mixed bag of agreement, maybes, and disagreement might be a way to go. At least disagreement shows different world views, rather than an echo chamber.

      While I’ve not yet subscribed, although I’m toying with the idea of donating to The Guardian as they keep content open. That still doesn’t mean I’m agree with all they print: only that it might help to keep the paper going and available online.

      1. Agree, the “balance” in rolling or bulletin news is worse than useless – never amounts to anything more than two people shouting at each other through megaphones. And it’s a game of “can I trick this person into saying something that can be exploited” rather than “I wonder what ideas they have that could pique my curiosity”.
        Still, I suppose it’s better than living my life in a homogenised echo-chamber of Catholic-libertarian-Brexiteer-technologist.

        1. Curiousity is a very good thing, IMO. Sadly, the fake drama constructed as debate does not assist in that.

          Maybe they’ll be second against the wall come the glorious revolution 😉

  2. My big annoyance with the media grind is how they control the discourse. They’ll portray the debate as being the difference between needing to kick 30,000 puppies and only kicking 10,000 puppies, while I’m yelling at the debate “Maybe we don’t need to kick **any** puppies at all!”

    1. Indeed. The reduction of a complex situation to choices A or B is severely limiting.

      There’s a rather good poster on Know Your Biases which you can get for free.

  3. I was always someone who liked to keep up with the news, years ago I would read the Times every day, in those days it was a really good paper, but I haven’t read it for years now as it’s not the same. I gave up watching the news on the TV in about October as I was just fed up with the whole thing. Endless talk about what might or might not happen and seeing our politicians arguing relentlessly instead of doing what they are paid for – running the country for example, just turned me off the whole thing and like you I have been more happy just living in my own bubble.

    Anyway I am glad to see 2020 has started off well for you, lets hope it continues that way!

    1. The polarisation of things and the BS of certain populists plays a part too. I’m not surprised you’ve switched off.

      My concern is by turning a blind eye, said folk are not held to account. If indeed the following of the news actually makes you want to.

      In other areas, yes, the first meeting went well, thanks.

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