Me and my fatty liver

Mon 11 – Sun 17 Feb 2019

Pic of my meds case

I’m feeling pessimistic and it’s primarily the fault of the bloody baby-boomers

The UK wobbles onwards to crashing out of the EU with all the problems and lost benefits that will follow. Cheered on by old and wealthy people (many on guaranteed pensions with mortgages paid off) who won’t have to deal with the consequences. The same people who criticised young people for demonstrating last Thursday. We’ve got 12 years to save the planet and I don’t see the selfish baby-boomers who have brought us to this point doing anything differently.

smiling baby boomers
I hate this couple

Take over 50 year-olds out of power and politics

Indeed I am coming to the conclusion that people above the age of 50 (so including me) should be banned from power and politics; we should leave it to the younger people. Yep they might fuck it up (and they might not) but it is their future – us over 50 year olds, we’ve had our chance and should stop holding back fresh talent and ideas come through. Indeed, can the young people put the world in a worst place than we have done?

Perhaps my fatty liver means I should stop worrying

Pig face

I do worry about the future – climate change, fascism, fake news, attacks on democracy. But perhaps I shouldn’t worry as I won’t be around forever. And a check on my liver confirmed this week that I have too much fat surrounding it – fatty liver.

Basically I think I’m heading towards a stroke or heart attack in the next few years. Is it depressing to talk about this or is it simply realistic?

Health and Efficiency

My hospital visit

health cholesterol

I came into this news about my fatty liver last Thurs following an ultrasound referral by my HIV doctor. It confirmed the other scan I had that I don’t have a hard liver yet but it does contain and is surrounded by too much fat. 🙁 Obviously I can lose weight but in many ways the damage is done.

I am looking forward to my sabbatical April-July as I’m pretty sure my bad eating is largely due to work stress.

An unimpressive jog-run

Jogging

Not a great jog-run last week. Usual Sat morning event but it came in at over one hour and 7 minutes. With an average pace per km not that far below 7 mins. 🙁 The last 2 kilometres were especially hard with no real push to accelerate as should happen. I’m also concerned the way my knees are taking so much longer to recover after each jog-run. 🙁

Long purposeful walks and bite-size exercising

Did do some long purposeful walks during last week primarily on my days off. Tues I walked from Olympia over to Victoria. Then on Thurs it was Olympia all the way up to Wormwood Scrubs. I liked the report this week that little bits of exercise (think of them like ‘snacks’ aka food intake) are good for us. Just a 15 min jog-run is beneficial. This is what I need to start doing more of.

I love massage (without happy endings)

Massage

Healthwise I also treated myself last week to a massage. It’s been ages and I really enjoy it. A hard sports and deep tissue massage. Very pleasant and unpleasant at the same time. Totally reputable with no happy ending. I’m not in the game of paying for sex rather I want a proper workout on my body.

Culture: cinema

The wonderful Prince Charles cinema in Leicester Square

blue computerised pattern

Culture vulture Thursday. After the hospital appointment informing me of my fatty liver, I got the tube into town and met Dave at the Prince Charles Cinema in Leicester Square. I actually detest Leicester Square, it’s a dump and I feel sorry for the tourists drawn there when there is nothing to see. But I love the Prince Charles Cinema, with its reasonably priced tickets and eclectic programme.

Colette

Actually ended up seeing 2 films on Thurs (Valentine’s Day). First was ‘Colette’. A very pleasant period drama. All pretty straight forward until the lesbian love interest came in. You could almost hear the sighs of exasperation from the audience who came there thinking they were going to see Lark Rise to Candleford. 🙂

A slightly sanitised view of late nineteenth / early twentieth century Paris, no real dirt or disease was shown. But a good film and a demonstration of the problems that come from not following sexual or gender norms.

Cold War

For the second film, Dave decided to toddle off home and I stayed on to see ‘Cold War’ on my own. One of those films that has had lots of acclaim by critics and serious film goers. It’s Polish and in black and white. Fundamentally a twisted love story with lots of glorious images. But for me it failed to explore the main characters enough and the story didn’t totally ring true. The way people criss-crossed the Iron Curtain just didn’t ring true to someone like me who lived through the cold war.

Which was the better film?

Close up purple orchid

I think I preferred Colette of the two. Not that Cold War isn’t a very good film and worth seeing. But it sets itself up as a great and deep film which I don’t think it quite lives up to. Whereas I don’t think Colette actually has those pretensions of grandeur even though you might expect it to.

Innovation and Creativity

Tension time

Headache

Work is stressful at the moment as we reach a key point in our annual calendar. One of those periods when people are striving to do their best but everyone is slightly apprehensive waiting for something that might not go as planned.

I’ve still got about 20 years of working life ahead of me and I’m pretty sure that my poor diet and lack of exercise leading to things like my fatty liver are related to work-related stress that we all face. What sort of world have we created where food is not life-giving but a drug to deal with the stress we face? 🙁

The value of a good boss

Another reason for tension is that my boss is temporarily not around. She’s had to go off somewhere which is totally reasonable. But she’s very good, a cool head. And when she’s around it is reassuring that she’s there to fight our corner. There’s a mantra ‘People don’t leave jobs, they leave bosses’ and that’s pretty much true I think. Plus it can work the opposite way, people stay in jobs because of good bosses.

Personal Development

There’s little good news

I have not written about personal development stuff for a few weeks as there is little to talk about. I’m knackered at night and so often just fall asleep before I get the chance to do some Duolingo or Drops language learning. I dabble without being consistent.

My spare time is frequently taken up with dealing with work and personal emails to stop them becoming overwhelming. And so that also takes time out for coding practice. My plan is I’m going to do loads of personal development stuff during my sabbatical, we shall see…

Books and Reading

The Hearing Trumpet

skull and crossbones

This was the book I read last week. It’s by the surrealist author and artist Leonora Carrington. It’s short but not the easiest read. It’s a complete fantasy story covering many angles including old people living together, religious corruption, satanism, ecological disaster, and recovering the holy grail!

Seriously weird and demanding of far more attention than I really envisaged. As an individual, Leonora had a fascinating life and it can be read about here.

The joy of old people living together

The most amusing bit for me was the fact it was effectively set in an old people’s home. And there was a lot about the bitchiness and rivalry that exists in such a place. It really struck home as that is exactly what the sheltered housing where Brian lived was like (he was one of the old chaps I went to visit in Brighton until he died). Perhaps this is something we’ve all got to look forward to assuming we live long enough.

The joy of reading whilst walking

So I’m reading 2 books at the moment. My ‘normal’ one is ‘Milkman’ by Anna Burns. It won the Man Booker prize 2018 and is good but very much a piece of literature. Lots of words and massive chunky paragraphs, its solidity demands total attention.

The other one is ‘Metro 2033’ by Dmitry Glukhovsky. Cult novel, post-apocalypse set in the Moscow metro. It’s good and I read it on my kindle whilst I’m walking about. There is actually something wonderfully therapeutic about walking and reading. So much easier to do with a kindle than a real book. And a great way to up the number of hours I can spend doing my beloved reading. 🙂

Don't cling to a mistake

The Week Ahead

  • Usual work days which will be chocca with apprehension 🙁
  • Dave goes off to Antwerp next weekend so I will be Billy home alone 🙁 . I’m staying at his place this week as my brother and nephew are staying with mum during half-term.
  • My usual 2 days off and I’ve booked a massage via the Terence Higgins Trust for Tues afternoon
  • Still watching ‘Britannia’ on boxset which is great apart from the theme song which is shit. Looking forward to my next boxset ‘The Orville’, highly recommended for Star Trek fans.
  • Julian Clary in cabaret on Thurs night with Dave plus my old mates Dom and Steve
  • Hopefully a better jog-run next Sat

And Finally…

The negative force that is nationalism

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