Despite all the postmodern ironic perspective on celebrity, I want to sound a chord of humanity. We all have a basic need to connect with other beings. Certain beings have very strong attractions and others repulse us. This at the basis of celebrity. Other thinkers may be able to extrapolate on this. I merely put this forward as a mode of understanding a phenomenon, which has been twisted by social, television and print media.




The seal and the swimmer

Yesterday I broke a draught in my sea swimming, February had been cold with rough sea conditions. The sun was out and with hardly a breeze coming off the sea I headed to the Battery rocks. I saw what I thought was a buoy bobbing just off the rocks. Stripping off and getting in is always the hardest part and after a few minutes my breathing became more normal and I felt like I could stay in for longer. I was joined by another swimmer and she said she had seen a seal, I thought she was mistaken, but as I swam around the edge of the rocks I saw she was right and the seal was at the surface letting his head point up, nostrils and mouth out of the water, almost motionless. He allowed me to approach, as if he wasn't aware of me. I made some noise, but still no reaction. I got within 5 meters and he finally dived and then I was aware that I had no idea where he was. I swam back to the rocks happy and elated. The intrinsic value of a swim in the sea is inly added to by any encounter with an animal whose natural territory is the sea.


Ego and destruction

Having looked at the latest evidence on the assassination of JFK in 1963, even though the 1991 Film by Oliver Stone 'JFK' points to considerable collusion with the CIA and military/industrial complex, I have come to the conclusion that human ego is at the base of it all.

It seems that Lee Harvey Oswald wanted to kill someone, he had attempted assassination before. He had the perfect workplace from which to shoot, most of all he wanted notoriety, and this was a quick fix. JFK wanted power and influence, he was a part of the 'Camelot' dynasty of politicians, and that is why in Dallas that day they came together. Even Jack Ruby wanted to be the one who killed the killer after Oswald was arrested.

Peter Gabriel had it right in his song about assassination 'Family snapshot', where we find the lyric:-

We were made for each other
Me and you
I want to be somebody
You were like that too
If you don't get given you learn to take
And I will take you."

Perhaps we could not get out of bed in the morning without ego, when ego takes over we move into possible disaster and given the modern methods of mass destruction, the scale can be huge, not just a single assassination. Ego and our animal selves, a powerful and deadly combination. If we could combine the power of ego to peaceful ends then we have a chance of survival.



We walked from Penzance along the beach to Marazion yesterday, the rain and wind waited until our return to put up a concerted resistance blinding us even with our hoods up. This linked with sinking sand, sucking at our heavy wellies slowed our walking. We traced the tides edge so as to find firmer footing. A flock of Turnstones were running at each waves retreat, feeding. Always moving, a partially visible dynamic presence at the waters edge.

Finding us too close, they took to the air and disappeared, their wings blurred into action, turning into the wind and then back to skim the surf, to feed again behind us. We looked back, St Michaels mount almost lost in the mist and rain, the Turnstones rushing behind the waves again.


The strange and the everyday

Yesterday outside the Co-op in Penzance a dog tied up, awaiting the return of her owner was very pleased to see me and we had a cuddle up.

I realised why she was scared. 5 brightly coloured balloons were being blown by the wind. Caught in a right angle of walls the wind rotated the balloons around and around, so that every few seconds the balloons would come right up to the dog and then pass by, only to return again. She eyed up the strange happening, not taking her eyes off the balloons, just in case.

We have domesticated these amazing creatures and we share this strange existence with them, things confuse and baffle both us and them. I don't have any conclusions from this, I imagine neither did the dog.