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furniture delivery

A month ago I ordered some furniture on a buy one get one free offer.  To my surprise only one was delivered.  Sometimes its not the size of the problem to sort out but just having to pay attention to something that should have been so simple.  Its bad enough that I had been waiting from 7am as they need a 5 hour window.  Anyway I phoned the delivery people who then told me to return to my local branch where I paid for it.  At the branch they were a bit flummoxed but tried to sort it.  Thankfully it was early and not busy so the assistant made a few phone calls to try to resolve the issue.  I need the furniture in a week’s time so can’t wait another month for delivery.  I tell her this but aware that it is not her fault.  Eventually she lets me know that I can leave the store while she continues to get to the bottom of this.  I appreciate this as I have other stuff to be getting on with.  I later receive a call saying there is nothing they can do I’ll have to come in and start the whole process again. No, that’s not what I want to hear.  I decide to let it go and plan to go in tomorrow to re-order.  Next she calls back to say that I don’t need to come in as they will reorder the items for me. Okay there is still a delay but I will get them.  An hour later someone calls to ask me if I can be in for a delivery in two days time! Yes, definitely.  I am so pleased.  No need for the various back up plans I was brewing as it should be sorted by the end of this week.  Surprisingly I get yet another call asking me if I am happy with the service!  Well at the moment I am ecstatic but that assumes both items will be delivered on Thursday.

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Open Forum

Hello and welcome.  Thanks for looking me up if you’ve just got my newsletter. You can add comments to any of the existing posts or introduce something new here.  I should be able to turn the best comments into posts  – with your consent.  Use your real name or another name – its up to you

Looking forward to it

I don’t know about you but I struggle to have a best anything.  It’s not like desert island disks where participants are expected to choose a favourite for all eternity – imagined not real.  I like the fact that I can always find a new film etc that I really enjoy and don’t feel the need to rank them in any way.  I guess that might change in the future. I imagine it’s partly explained by the fact that I often see things after they’ve been around for a while.  I can never be bothered to do the latest thing just because it is the latest thing although occasionally it is fun to know what all the hype is about.

Live shows are different because you hesitate and they’re gone.  I remember missing the all-male swan lake to be confronted by review after review proclaiming its excellence.  Not a good one to miss.  Then again there was a lot of media attention around God of Carnage and I was disappointed by it – more slapstick than expected.  However Prince, Madonna and Kanye all lived up to their hype – brilliant!

In keeping with being just behind the curve I went to see The Dark Knight last night.  I thought it did very well to create Gotham city – not a very nice place.  But what was more interesting for me was to see how the characters responded to their environment, their experiences and the expectations of others. The story is at once complex and simple.  Human greed for power or money or status are all present.  An upstanding citizen behaves like a criminal and criminals demonstrate decency.   I’d love to see the script as there were lost of interesting psuedo philosophical lines in it.  It seems we can all justify anything we choose to do – good or bad.  In the film there was talk of the Gotham getting the hero it deserves (in Batman). [ I recently went to a discussion entitled ‘we get the press we deserve’ – for another time.] As his flaws become apparent he is no longer considered a hero but a guardian angel (?).  There is also an interesting aside between Batman and the joker when the joker deduces that they need and thrive off each other. Hmm. How does that speak to us and what heroes do we deserve in our world now?  Let me know what you think of any aspect of this and tell me about your favourites…

What a ride the olympics has been!  Team GB’s medal haul has given us all a much needed lift.  It’s amazing how our individual psyche is affected by the national mood, whether we are community minded or not.  I have been truly impressed by the individual stories of dedication, effort, practice, motivation and team work.  So many of us give up so easily nowadays and its wonderful to hear stories of people becoming triumphant after injury, illness and loss.  

I do feel for the shy participants who just want to perform and then recover privately yet every moment is observed and recorded.  Some seem so dazed afterwards – whether on a high or a low – that they are not sure how they feel and struggle to explain it.  They need to go into such a private psychological space to believe they can win and yet we expect them to talk about their events as though they are observers like us. Being on the inside must be incredible but not something us non medal winners can ever experience.

And what is it about expectations.  There are tables equating so much money spent with so many medals. But what about human error and vulnerabilities? Haven’t we noticed how wrong our predictions often are across so many different sporting events?  Human beings are not machines and a slight change in the wind …can have a big effect on the outcome.  Not only did we have expectations but as these were being surpassed during the games we kept expecting more so the pleasure for the single achievement was less. How could you not get a medal if everyone else you trained with got one?  And suddenly, for some, silver was not good enough. ?!  Sure you want to contribute to the team effort but a medal, of any metal, is a huge achievement.

Expectations can affect us non olympians as well: it seems the better we perform more is expected of us.  This may be why some of us – young and old – do not seek to be outstanding in anything because of the pressure to then keep to that standard.  We could probably all be brilliant at something.  I myself prefer a range of competencies over narrow brilliance but I love to see such incredible feats of brilliance displayed. And how do we encourage participation of ourselves and others even when we are neither competent nor brilliant?  Can we put in the effort as beginners even when we feel inadequate?

local talent

Sometimes we get caught up in thinking that we are incredibly busy and everything is expensive.  These are two things that most people would agree on.  Yet that is not always the case.  Last night I had a lovely evening that was neither rushed nor expensive – it was almost surprising in its simplicity.  We went to 2 music performances for the price of 2 drinks! Yes that’s right.  We walked to the venues. We walked home. Entry was free.  And we felt good about supporting local talent.  As much as I love seeing the big acts in the big stadiums its nice to know that there is so much pleasure in the small, local and unknown acts.  I recently heard a comment that the more global we become the more we desire local connections and I feel connected to that. Thankfully we can have both, no need to choose.

hopefulness

So many days over the past few weeks the news has been very unpleasant.  Not least has been that terrible situation in Zimbabwe.  But today seems to be a hopeful day:-

  • The two leaders in Zimbabwe have agreed to talks and the possibility of power sharing.  They signed the documents yesterday and South Africa’s President was credited with bringing both sides together. Hopefully this is the beginning of the end of that horrendous situation.
  • Today sees the arrest of Bosnian Serb war crimes suspect Radovan Karadzic
  • 3 retailers are about to reduce the price of petrol!  
  • A new drug for prostate cancer
Pretty good going……

Mandela is 90 today!

It is wonderful to be alive at the same time as this great man.  Previous generations had Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr.  I am still amazed at how well loved Mandela is, not because of him but because we so often choose beauty, power and money over substance.  

Mandela stood up for what he believed in : equality and social justice.  He suffered for his cause.  When punished with a prison sentence he tried his best to use that time to develop his physical, mental, emotional and spiritual strength.  When released by his captors, he chose forgiveness and reconciliation over persecution and retribution.   He is not a saint but he had vision and could see what would move humanity on; a long term view.  In his personal life he has had the painful public breakdown of his early marriage and the death of a child.  Still he continues, through his charitable work, to do all he can for the good of humankind.

How many of us are really prepared to work for equality and social justice, at home? abroad? worldwide?

How many of us will use a time of suffering to develop our character?

How many of us will forgive our oppressors when the tables turn and we have the power? Turning the other cheek rather than an eye for an eye.

Like many I struggle with these truths but feel it is worth aspiring to.   What do you think/feel about it?