It’s taken 30+ years of life experience and 10+ years of marriage to realise that there’s a LOT more to apologising than I ever thought possible, and frankly, most people kind of suck at apologising.
“I’m sorry” is one of the most common phrases in the English language, but probably one of the most misused.
Before I got married, I didn’t understand any of the art of how to apologise. I thought you did something, you recognised that it was wrong, you said sorry and you perhaps asked for forgiveness. I was missing out on huge swathes of psychology, intricacy and emotion behind the phrase.
Since getting married and learning both by experience and by reading, I have learned that there is so much more to apologising and I was certainly doing it incorrectly in the past. A quick rundown of some of the things that you’re probably doing wrong when you try to apologise: Continue reading “How to say sorry”
Greg Davies is now a household name in the UK, where his down-to-earth comedy makes you feel like you’re having a laugh at the pub with your mates.
I just finished watching Firing Cheeseballs at a Dog by Greg Davies again and I realised that he may well be my favourite comedian.
Those of you outside the UK probably have no idea who he is, so for the uninitiated, he’s a middle-aged man that used to a be a teacher and found his calling as a stand-up comedian in his thirties.
He’s clearly a very funny man and I think that perhaps the most endearing thing about him is that he’s still just like the funny guy in your group of friends, who laughs his way through his stories. There’s no persona, he freely makes fun of himself, and you just want to be his best friend. Genuine bloke. Continue reading “Greg Davies: perhaps my favourite comedian”
Marti and I have tried many recipes for biscuits and gravy since becoming vegan, but they never really did the trick. However, we finally found the perfect recipe for each and they’re hands-down the best biscuits and gravy I’ve ever had (even ones that aren’t vegan).
We’ve been vegan for a good number of years now and, living in The South, we have an affection for biscuits and sausage gravy.
This calorie-laden carb-fest is usually served at breakfast or brunch, but I’d be lying if I said we didn’t just have this for dinner…
Biscuits and gravy is something that we’ve tried numerous incarnations of since becoming vegan and have always convinced ourselves that there’s a few recipes which are good and rival the conventional ones, but it wasn’t until I put this dish together tonight that I realised I was lying to myself all this time. This recipe is out of this world and is easily the best biscuits and gravy we’ve ever had, vegan or otherwise. Continue reading “OMG-so-good vegan biscuits & sausage gravy”
Our current library of terms for describing certain periods of the day aren’t adequate enough in my opinion, so I’ve taken the liberty of creating a couple of new terms that fill this gap.
I’m going to propose a couple of new terms that fill a gap in our available descriptions for certain times of the day.
For example, you want to meet someone at 4 or 5 pm. Would you say that you’re meeting them in the afternoon? In the evening? Over dinner? No. The first two don’t really represent the general time period that you have in mind and over dinner might suggest (perhaps incorrectly) that there’s food involved. The solution?
It’s a portmanteau of afternoon and evening that adequately describe the grey area between the two.
Similarly, but a little less elegantly, perhaps the period between what is clearly morning and what is clearly the afternoon should be called the mor·ner·noon.
Or, perhaps, I use portmanteaus a little too often and humanity has gotten us this far without such words available to them…
Adverbs have all but disappeared from American English much to my dismay. Thankfully, at least for now, the Brits are holding on to them.
One thing in particular that bugs me about what Americans say and how they say it is their complete disregard for adverbs.
For those who have forgotten since fourth grade, adverbs describe how something is done. The very name is a portmanteau of adjective (describing how) and verb (something is done).
For example, if I run down a hill and I do so with some speed, you might say that I have run down the hill quickly. I did not “run down the hill real quick“. Similarly, if I don’t know the rules of grammar, you might say that I don’t know how to speak properly. It is not the case that I “can’t speak proper“.
Adverbs help add color and imagery to an otherwise factual description of something. They are distinct from adjectives and should be treated as such. I can be quick and I can run quickly, but I cannot run quick.
Uber, AirBnB and Bitcoin are at the forefront of a trust revolution, where we’re ditching our faith in institutions like banks, governments and churches in favour of trusting complete strangers that we can reliably put our faith in.
I love a good TED talk. Every now and then, one resonates so well with me that I feel compelled to post it here to share it with other.
Rachel Botsman’s recent talk was one such talk. She discussed how trust has moved through three distinct phases in history: local trust, where our trust was knowing those in the village, institutional trust, where we relied upon banks, companies and governments to determine who and what could be trusted to the recently emerging distributed trust, where our behaviour, reputation and globally accepted practices and technologies dictate what we can trust today.
Continue reading “Why institutional trust has vanished and distributed trust is soaring”
Preface: I’m keenly aware that as someone who has no voting rights in the USA, my words carry little weight, however, I’m also raising children (most notably, a daughter) in this environment, so I’m exercising my voice on behalf of my children who will one day have the ability to shape the world in which they live.
I’ve very much come to terms with the fact that Trump will be the next President. It’s done and I accept that.
What is much harder to come to terms with is the fact that people think this town jester who:
- mocks the disabled,
- lusts after and assaults women like an immature and dangerous college student,
- considers “religion” to be an appropriate factor in determining one’s suitability for entering the country,
- perpetuated the longstanding lie that Obama was born in Kenya
- adjusts his limp backbone based on the response he gets from the people,
- claims business acumen when his wealth would be double what it is today if he’d have retired in 1982 and invested in the S&P500,
- derides people based on their looks despite looking like an orange-tinted, wig-adorned, plump corpse himself,
- etc., etc. ad nauseam
is someone that a (near) majority of the people consider to be fit to serve in the highest office in the USA. It’s an absolute mockery. Continue reading “Coming to terms with Trump”
Donald Trump is the product of years of political stunts, extremism and a wide variety of differing right-wing political stances that have caused big chasms in the Republican party.
I typically try to stay out of political discussions, mostly because the opportunity for meaningful, thought-provoking and intelligent discussion has all but evaporated these days and because as a British citizen, I am little more than a bystander in American politics.
On a broader note, I saw this video this morning of a speech that President Obama made, where he criticised the GOP for creating an environment in which Donald Trump could succeed, abandoning him at the eleventh hour because openly bragging about sexual assault is apparently one step too far, and then trying to benefit politically from ditching him.
He brings to light the fact that the GOP has promoted, fostered and cultivated such extreme and disparate positions that there is simply no unity in the party anymore. Donald Trump is the prime example of this, saying what his brain tells him to and then recanting, flip-flopping and swerving in response to popular consensus, rather than stating his honest views and sticking by them. Continue reading ““Donald Trump didn’t come out of nowhere””
“Because I said so” stops conversations dead in their tracks, and that’s how we intend it: to shut our children down and expect their obedience without their understanding. This robs them of an opportunity to learn, develop and become more capable, functional people.
“Because I said so” is one of those phrases that drove us crazy as kids, that we swore we’d never utter and yet slips out of our mouths almost unconsciously.
Conventional parenting says that children are to be seen and not heard, which makes phrases like “because I said so” acceptable. They’re our last line of defence in a conversation that we’re seeking to end without any further explanation or inquisition. We expect full adherence because we’re in charge and what we say, goes. Continue reading “Because I said so”
Marti and I have been wanting to move to Portland for many years now and in the recent past, all of the stars aligned and we’ll be picking up and leaving FL early next year. I’ll be moving our belongings and vehicles across the country, so with many months to plan, I want to make sure that if I’m going to travel 3,500 miles, I’m going to make it the most enjoyable and beautiful road trip that I possibly can.
It has been our dream to move to Portland, OR for many years now. We’ve been waiting for the right time when my company was able to accommodate me in our Portland office so that I could stay with my company (whom I enjoy working for) and so that I would have a job waiting for me at the other end.
Sadly in my case, my company isn’t going to pay for the move because it is my preference to move there: they’re not requesting that I move for work reasons, so the financial burden is on me which I understand and accept. It’s just the price that we have to pay to realise our dream of moving out west.
So with that in mind, I now find myself in a position of trying to figure out how to achieve this. It’s quite a logistical operation, especially when you have a wife, two children and four cats. Continue reading “Planning a road trip (move) from St Petersburg, FL to Portland, OR”