Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Bad habits

There is so much I want to say but I'm biting my tongue.

My children will tell you that I never allowed them to chew gum in my company as they grew up. This last year I've taken to chewing it for some strange reason. Call me a hypocrite but I seem to be hooked on the stuff and chew with alarming speed and often bite my tongue sufficient to water my eyeballs.

I'm hoping my children will step in to ban me, but as yet they are turning a  dry blind eye. Eat your heart out Alex (Man.U manager of similar speed).

Anyway, I've finished the book that Eileen breezed through while sitting in the garden in France. It became a book with a hook as I sneaked a peep at the opening paragraph...

"Someone once said that youth is wasted on the young. Not a bit of it. Only the young have the impulsive energy to tackle the impossible and enjoy it; the courage to follow their instincts and brave the new; the stamina to work all day, all night and all the next day without tiring. For the young everything is possible. None of us, twenty years later, could do the things we did in our youth. Though the vision burns still bright, the energy has gone."

Far too gory for men to read (the clue is found in the print before the title) but it's compulsive reading and a superb social documentary of Docklands East -End London in the 50's. It reminds me of Docklands East-End Sunderland of the same era.

Verdict: Raw, hopeless, sad and chilling as well as poignant, warm, gentle and optimistic.

The cover picture is exactly the way me and Tucker Ellis used to go to school...hole in the seat of my pants and all.

Farewell to the East End, welcome the next good and easy read whatever, whenever or wherever it may be.

Perhaps I should say farewell to a few bad habits too...I'll chew it over :)


  1. I like books like that. I will look it up.

    I think it was Oscar Wilde that said youth is wasted on the young.

    We drove through Mansfield on our way to Stainsby music festival a couple of weekends ago and I waved at you. Did you see me?

  2. I meant Newark. Well I waved for ages.

  3. I'm imagining you, deep into the book, chewing like crazy.

  4. Always a pleasure to read your notes Ken. Was thinking of listing my (bad) habits & here comes your note ! "Raw, hopeless, sad and chilling as well as poignant, warm, gentle and optimistic" very similar was my reaction to quite a few movies including Slum Dog Millionaire ! Thanks heaps

  5. Hi MollyP
    And George Bernard Shaw as quoted in the book...'Youth is such a wonderful thing. What a crime to waste it on children'.

    People often drive through Newark but miss it all because it's in the middle where there's no main roads. And why didn't you drop in?

    Actually willow, my jaw often dropped in horror resulting in the danger of losing my gum.

    Hi Raj
    I'm sure you haven't any but I'll keep a look out just in case.

  6. My kids harass me because I don't chew gum. They think that I'm strange :) Love the idea of the book. I will look it up.

  7. Gum was at the bottom of the list if a recall! - according to their measure for youth, I must be in my prime - there is something to tell the wife what do you think?

  8. Hi Kelly
    My kids have ALWAYS thought me strange regardless of the gum.

    Okay Mr cryptic, thanks for your comment. How about an explanation?