The last month or so, I've become obsessed by stories. I decided to take a break from drinking at the start of the year and it's paved the way for stories. I was trying to get into reading more late last year, with varying success, but I would always end up falling asleep or forgetting what I'd read, or getting super depressed and needing to take frequent breaks from whatever I was reading (looking at you, The Handmaid's Tale).

Now nearing a month without drinking, I feel like I'm at the edge of a realisation and I don't know how happy I am about it. I feel like I've swapped one undesirable state of mind for another and, though my overall health has likely improved, my frame of mind is the same or maybe even worse.

The most noticeable thing to have changed is I have had zero creative output for myself (or what I consider creative output anyway). I haven't written anything, I haven't taken pictures. All I do is consume; reading, gaming, listening, looking at things other people made. I cannot overstate just how much I hate this. I had hoped that reading would jolt my creativity but I feel like it's killed it instead, or at least knocked it out.

I don't really know what to do about that. If there's even anything I can do about it. There's no conclusion here or anything; I just wanted to write something and timestamp this feeling so I can look back and see when this was.

I don't plan to run back to drinking. I'm not going to be quite so strict about sobriety as I have been, but I have no motivation to have a drink and I'm not going to push it or start up just for the sake of it. I do feel better, if you don't count the constant internal screaming, feelings of general hope/worthlessness and overall malaise. Unfortunately, I do; and therein lies the problem.


Friday

Friday

You know things are spiralling when you're thinking about Friday on a Monday!


I got my hair cut!

I got my hair cut!

I'm pretty spontaneous when it comes to making significant changes to my appearance. Once I get the idea in my head that my hair needs cutting, it's gone. Did pretty much the same when I had dreadlocks.


Misc

Misc

I've been so busy with work since I got back from Nashville, and the weather sucked too much to go out taking pictures most days. Still I got a few snaps, even if they're pretty crummy, most of them.


I'm pretty much convinced that N.K. Jemisin is incapable of writing books that I don't love. The City We Became started slowly, and I wasn't really sure what type of thing I was reading. It both is, and isn't, fantasy. It's very strange, but so was The Broken Earth. As I was getting towards the end, I found out that the next book was released in November so I bought that to read immediately. I guess that's all the recommendation I need to give.


Every time I use motorways I get frustrated. I can understand that traffic jams occur when there's accidents, but what I don't understand is why there's consistently congestion where traffic joins motorways. Surely there should be a way to use motorways so that there's never congestion when joining them. This feels like either an economics or a physics problem.

There must be a way to behave around junctions that ensures traffic can flow freely up to a point. Things like keeping the left lane clear at junctions, merging slowly. I need a YouTuber to figure this out for me. Going to email Tom Scott.


Mandarin Duck on the Pond

Mandarin Duck on the Pond

I think this duck came to visit over the summer and has just stayed. I'm glad because I love him. Have been meaning to get down and take some pictures of him for a while but haven't had chance, and the light is pretty nice for taking pictures today.


It must be that time of year again

It must be that time of year again

As we know, I love big crashy waves. I somehow seem to accidentally suggest we go for a walk when they're particularly splashy quite frequently!


Stars and Christmas Lights

Stars and Christmas Lights

Went to go and look at some local Christmas lights. Didn't really find any but did have a go at taking some photos of the stars since it was a clear night. Moderately happy with the results I guess?


I went for a walk

I went for a walk

I am currently sick. I had a cold and now I have either a throat or chest infection, and maybe a perforated eardrum/ear infection. Feeling pretty good. Can't cycle, so went for a walk.


It snowed

It snowed

It hardly ever snows. It was pathetic when you consider how much other places in England got.


A photo that everyone took

A photo that everyone took

I was waiting outside Shelter Hall for everyone to arrive at our work Christmas party, and there was a pretty nice sunset. Around 90% of people who walked past took a picture like this.


Pigs in Blankets Pizza

Pigs in Blankets Pizza

Last year I said I wanted to try every vegetarian/vegan pigs-in-blankets. This year they're all out of stock. Coincidence?


Unpredictable Cat is Unpredictable

Unpredictable Cat is Unpredictable

I love a Christmas tree. It's like my favourite part of Christmas other than Christmas pizza. I would have bet real human currency that this stupid cat would climb the tree immediately but she continues to make a liar of me.


clipping. at Chalk

clipping. at Chalk

I've wanted to see clipping. live for so long. I nearly got to, but then covid happened which I didn't love. This is also the first time I've been to The Haunt since they renamed it Chalk and they did a great job on the refurb.


Anniversary Burgers!

Anniversary Burgers!

For our 14 year wedding anniversary (which is traditionally ivory and, therefore, extremely difficult to gift), Charlotte got me ArcTanGent tickets and made me heart-shaped burgers.


I Shazam a lot of songs. In the last two weeks I have Shazam'd about 15, and two of them were from The Weeknd. I've previously never had any interest in The Weeknd. Funny how that plays out sometimes.


Nashville, November 2022

Nashville, November 2022

I've been in Nashville for 10 days launching a site. Launch has gone well but I'm going to need a longer belt for a while.


Friday

Friday

This silly cat is getting quite big. She is very funny and annoying. I like having a kitten but I'm fine with her just being a cat now.


Conjurer at Green Door Store

Conjurer at Green Door Store

I haven't been bothered by taking pictures at shows much since ArcTanGent but this had quite a cool atmosphere and was sold out in a small venue so wanted to try and capture that.