Stew tagged me, the bastard. Here's my "crazy eights";
Eight things I am passionate about:
Beauty. It keeps me alive, I swear. I love the fact that it's everywhere I look. As I get older, more and more things have become beautiful. Perhaps my senses are growing more attuned. It can be found in the most unlikeliest of places - the corners of mouths, under pebbles, written in between the lines of a poem or in the single note of a song. Whilst I know it has no inherent value and that it exists only within the eye that beholds it, it gives me meaning. Call me a Gaia junkie if you will, I couldn't care less.
Objectivity / Rationality. I have little tolerance for flim flam, automatic assumption, bigotry, blind faith or superstition. Frankly it boils my piss when I come across it. I guess it's an obsession of mine to reflect on my own automatic assumptions, faiths and superstitions so that I might understand what it is about our fuzzy senses that make us so susceptible to these falsities.
Family / Love. It's in the genetics I'm sure, but my family are the most important thing to me by a mile.
Person Centred Dementia Care. I manage a number of Dementia care units for people with advanced Dementias or who, because of their condition, behave in ways which would challenge more 'traditional' care units. This work is hard physically, emotionally and psychologically and frequently underestimated. The skills, knowledge and values required to to this job well are beyond the reach of many. Yet our government expects the bulk of this work to be done by low paid, under-trained, under-valued people. I try to do my best to engineer the most optimal circumstances for these people to give good care. I'll stop here, before I go on one of my frequent soliloquies on the subject...
Recovery focused mental health care. I'm also responsible for a number of services providing care and support to younger adults with 'severe' mental health problems. By this I mean psychosis, bi-polar affective disorder (manic depression) and such like. Since the dawn of Psychiatry, these conditions have been thought of as incurable and chronic. The system treat them with this assumption. It still does to an extent. With the rise of the 'consumer movement' and service users finding their voice finally, it has become clear that people can learn to live perfectly decent lives with these conditions, given the right circumstances. The lumbering behemoth that is the mental health system is taking its time catching on to this. I'd like to think that I'm amongst those that agitate for change. I hope I'm making a difference, modest as it may be.
The outdoors. I love my Northumberland for its wide open spaces. I try to be outside in it whenever I can.
Running. Well, it gets me outside I suppose. If I don't get to run at least once a week I get irritable and tired. Perhaps I'm addicted.
Technology. Yup, I'm a geek and a man. As such I like all things with buttons and LEDs. Despite my attempts to temper these nerd compulsions, I know that I'll own an I-phone by the end of the year.
Eight things to do before I die:
Run the New York Marathon
Write a half decent book
Plan my funeral
Drive the Nurburgring in a stupidly fast car
Have my children grow into adulthood and tell me that they're happy in their own skin
See the Amazon & Ganges rivers
Grow into adulthood and feel happy in my own skin
Say something really enigmatic, in my final breath, that people will wonder about for generations.
Eight things I say often
Oh, for goodness sake
Get down off the back of the sofa
No, I don't want double glazing, now fuck off.
Eight books I have read or am still reading:
The Wasp Factory, Iain Banks
Cider With Rosie, Laurie Lee
Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Friedrich Nietzsche
Is it just me, or is everything shit? Steve Lowe
Collapse, Jared Diamond
Metaphors We Live By, George Lackoff
Life of Pi, Yann Martel
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, Dave Eggers
Eight songs to listen to over and over again:
This is a hard one, as it changes almost daily. So I will use only my last months listening as indicated by last.fm.
Four Tet - She Moves Me
Bright Channel - Light Workers
Low - California
The Six Parts Seven - Now Like Photographs
Coaltar of the Deepers - Good Morning
Squarepusher - Journey to Reedham
The Arcade Fire - No Cars Go
Mystery Jets - Soluble in Air
Eight things that attract me to friends:
Tolerance - well, they would have to be...
Lack of pungent body odour
A present and working brain
I can't be arsed to spread this meme any further. If you want to be tagged by me then just tear off a slip from the bottom of this post