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Monday, May 17th, 2004

Time Event
Very nice cycle up to the Anchor Inn yesterday, with a good lunch (smoked haddock on pease pudding with a very creamy mustard sauce; followed by a "thai fruit soup", various exotic fruits in a light syrup with a really interesting slight hint of chilli). The bridle path sections were at times more suited to horses than bikes.

It was good to get a better view of the Hundred Foot Washes than the brief glimpse from a train window. There's something primal about wetlands that I find deeply impressive, I can understand the bronze age people who made offerings at liminal places.
It is best for man to be middle-wise,
Not over cunning and clever:
The fairest life is led by those
Who are deft at all they do.

It is best for man to be middle-wise,
Not over cunning and clever:
No man is able to know his future,
So let him sleep in peace.

It is best for man to be middle-wise,
Not over cunning and clever:
The learned man whose lore is deep
Is seldom happy at heart.
W.H.Auden & P.B.Taylor translation of the Hávamál

So many people I know seem deeply unhappy at the moment with the way they are, or the way their life is going. I do wonder if it's normal, or if there's something about the people or the social environment here that makes discontent so prevalent.

I wish I could help more. At the moment I'm in a fairly good way, life isn't perfect but I'm mostly enjoying it. I feel I should be doing more to help my friends who aren't so lucky. I'm not very good at finding comforting words, but I can at least listen, and I should make more of an effort to make myself available to listen.
Interesting - apparently CD sales are actually increasing in the US, despite what RIAA claims.

The discrepancy appears to be down to record stores reducing costs by holding less inventory to compete with online retailers.
Anybody feel like coming along to see Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter… and Spring this evening at the Arts (8:45pm)? (Arts page here, IMDB page here)
Didn't get organised to go out in time, maybe another night.
Actually, I'm bored. I'm off to watch Saddest Music in the World
Interesting ethics:

An armed gang forced their way into a bullion storage area, threatened staff, then were arrested while trying to escape. Police and senior management knew all this would happen, but did nothing to prevent it. Presumably somebody decided that catching the criminals with undeniable evidence would be more effective in the long term than preventing a terrifying experience for the company staff. They claim to have arranged counselling for the staff.

I'm not sure whether or not the commercial and state authorities made the right decision. I can see the reasons they did, but I'm not convinced from that report that it was a good decision. I wouldn't be surprised if somebody sued.

(Goodness, I'm posting a lot to LJ today. Anybody would think I'm in total limbo at work.)
I've just been to see The Saddest Music in the World.

The constant knowing irony comes across as somewhat conceited at times, but at least mostly isn't too crass. It's a very funny film, from prat-falls and sight-gags to subtle adjacencies and associations. There are some very meaningful themes and allegories layered so carefully through the parody, cynicism and kitsch indulgence as not to offend the delicate sensibilities of modern arts-cinema audiences.

I overheard somebody say on the way out “that was very Canadian”, but they were talking in a very Canadian way, so I suspect some degree of national pride. It certainly wasn't very Hollywood, the closest there would be David Lynch, and he's just not that subtle.

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