Monday, August 09, 2021

More Blogging, Nam Myoho Renge Kyo.

It occurred to me the other day that blogging is a bit like keeping a private diary, but then leaving the thing open on a park bench in the hope someone is going to come along and actually read the thing. Just a very strange way to carry on.

A few months back I decided to return to some of my experiments in positive thinking, mind over matter and the like. I began daily chanting along to a YouTube video following the Buddhist chant Nam Myoho Renge Kyo.

A couple of months later the results are in.

So far:

I have a tax demand for £1200, paying £100 a month straight from my wages (which is nice).

My job has extended my probation period by a further three months rather than confirm my job after the six month period.

The firm that is meant to be replacing my windows has continued to fail to arrange the installation. Having cleared my ground floor for the process I have been sleeping on my sofa for the two months because I'm unable to get upstairs to the bedroom at the moment.

The pandemic has turned me into even more of a reclusive, paranoid, shut in. I've been working from home, and also furloughed, for more than a year now. The furlough was with John Lewis for a few months.

The recent heavy rain is leaking in through my roof (different place than last time).

So all that chanting and visualising is working wonders in my life. I can only recommend the process to anyone. Personally I'm going back to sacrificing small children.

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Sunday, August 01, 2021

Not Sleeping Again,

 It's half two in the morning and I'm blogging again by the light of the laptop screen.

Getting annoyed by the horrible banality of the TV adverts, I've just changed an Eric Clapton concert for Rick and Morty on the television, step up there at least. Who in the Mc Donalds company really thought that set of adverts with people laughing like morons was a good idea?

I finally have got round to placing my (am getting round to, but by the time you're reading this, will have) part of Mum's funeral up here. Even now just reading through the order of service there was a tear in my eye. I promised Jonathan a while ago I would do this to pair it up with John's.

This was going to be far more extensive, but I've just run out of steam.

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In Memory Of Rosie Burningham.

Mum and Grandpa at Mum's First wedding.

Order of Service:


Funeral Service for the late ROSEMARY JILL BURNINGHAM

Opening Music – ‘Let It Be Me’ sung by the Everly Brothers

Welcome and Introduction

Opening Prayer

Hymn – ‘Jerusalem’ (Words needed)

Psalm 23

Reading – ‘Remember Me’ by Christina Rossetti read by Jonathan Burningham

Thoughts – Simon Kennedy

Tribute & Address – The Reverend Canon David Nason

Reflection – ‘Let It Be’ sung by The Beatles

Prayers, including the Lord’s Prayer

Commendation and Committal


Closing Music – ‘Three Little Maids From School’ by Gilbert and Sullivan


My Part:



For Mum


I have to thank you all for joining us here today to remember Mum with us.

To start with I want to share something I try to do every morning. It’s an adaptation of a yoga exercise. I want as many of you to join me and try this now. You push the corners of your mouth up as for as you can get them. You do that almost to the point where it hurts, then you try to hold it. Now you relax, and part of it stays. In Buddhist yoga circles they tend to call this smiling.

I was going to pretend I was trying to make a phone call, and Mum was doing her usual. Too many calls with Jonathan with Mum in the background saying “Don’t forget to tell him!”, and “Have you said?”

I was going to pretend she was doing that now, but the only thing I can actually hear her saying is “Why are they so sad? Tell them to stop that, I don’t want them to be sad!”

That’s why I just asked you to smile, because I really think she wouldn’t want us to be sad today, and to try and remember the funny, ever so slightly eccentric individual Mum was.

What follows is a few cuttings from my personal scrapbook of recollections of the woman I used to insist when I was much younger was called originally called Rosemarie Jack and Jill Kirk.

My earliest story is not my memory, but a story Mum liked to tell me. As a small child, about three, I went through a bit of a biting period. As Mums story goes, we were living in Ireland, were round a friend of the families. Myself and their daughter were playing in the garden. At some point the girl comes into the house crying and saying “He bit me!”

Mum instantly charged out to the garden and took my hand and bit me, to the friends daughter saying in the background “Not Simon, the dog!” Once she had an idea in her head no-one was going to change it.

I did suggest for one of the pieces of music to be played today was the classic Dave Dee Dozy Mick and Tich’s “Bend It!”, but the spectacle of me trying to dance on a chair the way I did fifty years ago, that Mum was so fond of reminding me about, is probably something some of the younger people here should be spared from, even if I think I can still do it.

I still say the reason I was complimented on my dancing at a recent company Christmas party is because it was Mum who taught me to dance.

As Rob and Kay will remember, it wasn’t a family holiday without Mum falling flat on her face, or screaming and pushing Paul or I into a stream with the dead sheep she hadn’t noticed until that moment. I think that was Paul on this particular moment. I can’t count how many pictures I have of Mum lying face down in various different counties around the world, it was definitely a holiday tradition.

Everyone has a childhood picture they will never forgive their parents for. Mine has to be the one of Paul and I in matching Paisley shirts and ties, mine green, Paul’s blue, me at the age of nine in the garden in Germany. Mum loved that one.

Or the time she forgot to order something from the milkman and made me wear her dressing gown and slippers and shoving me after him so I had to run down the road in London to stop him and get him to come back. For those of you too young I’m sure you can find someone to explain what a milkman was.

I can’t hear Gilbert and Sullivan without thinking of Mum, especially certain of their operas. I still remember how proud Mum was when Grandpa tied all the rigging for her comic opera company when they did the Pirates of Penzance, when he was staying with us in Germany.

Some of you remember Mum won the Miss North West Phones competition when she worked for BT. My favourite moment from this period was when she was invited to the Post Office Tower and managed to get herself standing one on the static part of the restaurant floor and one foot on the revolving part of the floor so spent about twenty minutes scooting round the restaurant to stay in place, being introduced to people.

I look back with great affection on a whole period of television from when we lived in the new forest Roots to “I Clav Divs” (I Claudius) and so much more that we watched together. Anything with a certain historical period, mostly the Plantagenet’s were her favourite. It was very interesting to visit the national portrait gallery with her because she knew most of the “B” players as well as all the famous portraits, so could tell you this was so and so and the who they were a lover of.

Mum always said we shared a sense of humour, it was always her friends that were the funny, slightly strange ones, sorry Ray.

One of my personal favourite moments has to be when Mum, my Dad, and I went to see “Life of Brian”. If you can imagine the entire cinema is full of Python fans, and, my Dad. So the first film is the Python false travel film and it gets to the point where John Cleese is shouting and swearing about more bloody gondolas. The entire cinema is in tears apart from my Dad, who is sitting there saying things like “Well I don’t find that funny!” and “That’s really childish!” and so on. Mum and I couldn’t look at each other, he made it even more funny for the pair of us, bless him.

Finally we have to talk about what Jonathan calls her “I Don’t know what to do with the penguins” moments. In her later life she had that wonderful habit of looking like she was awake, only to have one of those bizarre little conversations about having put the blancmange in the wellingtons but not being able to get them to stand for parliament.

I mention this because a couple of weeks ago when I visited her in hospital she had spent most of the day sleeping. She awoke briefly and looked at me and said “You know I do love you!” and I for probably the first time in my adult life didn’t fob her off with the usual “Me too Mum!” but actually said “I love you too Mum.”

I love you too Mum”



Friday, July 30, 2021

Not sleeping Properly.

 I can't  call my self an insomniac because I do sleep. In fitful little patches.

The interesting thing is the strange programs you find yourself watching just trying to exhaust yourself enough to sleep. Last night I followed a brief viewing of a wig teleshopping channel with a biopic of Hemingway, each depressing in their own special way. The wig program only because it seems such a strange thing to be trying to sell, like any of these telesales channels with (artificially) "limited" stock with a countdown. The Hemingway was the last program in the series, so covering that sad period as his drinking and a number of airplane accidents add up to a serious decline in his health, both physical and mental, and inevitably to his death.

So I'm not the best state of mind, being sleep deprived and brought a bit down by my TV viewing, but I am blogging momentarily.

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Walking Home Tonight.

Just occasionally I feel I may have stepped sideways into another parallel universe.
This evening I get back to Portsmouth and Southsea close to nineteen thirty, got an early train due to going into work early today. It's that time of year just before the clocks go back when it's dark by the time I get home.
It starts with what I initially think is a an abandoned guy. They start early in Portsmouth. It's about now the kids roll out the classic plastic bag sticking out of the neck of some shell suit jacket and them yelling "penny for the guy". The locals having managed to associate the time of year with another way of getting money for nothing. Well this particular "Guy"looks pretty gruesome, stain on the wall behind it, looks like a head shot, slumped down the wall. I even have to go back and take a second look. Only to realise it's actually a guy slumped by the wall reading his phone. Leavening him to his own busyness I wander round to Tesco/s.


This is four years old but I'm publishing now.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

The Package.

"Right so lets go through it all over again Mr Rosenkitten!"
"Right from the top?"
"Yes Please,"
"And it's Rosenkvitten, not kitten please."
"Yes please, right  from the beginning."
"So it's a business,"
"The boxes,"
"Yes the boxes, lockers, mail boxes. I've got boxes from big business like Gung-Ho, you know the purple ones. You buy something from their website and if for some reason you don't want it sent to your prehab address you nominate this block here. This ones called Betty for some reason. Ken, the Gung-Ho guy, I've known Ken for years now. Well Ken turns up probably every other day, in that big old clapped out purple hover van of his. Gung-Ho emblazoned down the side in the garish font they use. Well it's never just Ken, he always has some kid with him. The kids don't seem to last long so I never really get to know their names, but Ken, like I said, known him for years. One of them brings the stuff in, the other watches the van. Can't leave the van alone especially not in this sort of neighbourhood. Well the punter either leaves a package or is picking one up. Their given a code, one of the lockers opens up and they either deposit something or pick something up. I don't ask, I have a reputation for being discreet. Ken comes along and empties all the lockers puts them in the van then the kid comes in and fills them with the deliveries, Ken and the kid have special codes for that. Then the punters pick their stuff up later once notified over the mesh."
"So the package was in the Gung-Ho lockers? They should be able to provide a traceable log then?"
"They would be able to if the thing was in one of their lockers."
"It wasn't in one of the Gung-Ho lockers then?"
"A few years back I branched out with my own boxes. You know address of convenience. You see the grey boxes next to the purple ones, those are mine. You rent them on a monthly basis. I don't ask too many questions, they're not big enough for anything really dangerous, a small package, letters. as I say address of convenience. See this unit isn't like the rest of the prehabs in the block. It's an ex security transport crate. One of the split ones with extra protection to the inside half"
"So you have more boxes inside the other half??"
"Don't be stupid. I had them plumb the thing up like a prehab, water, electric, comms. I live in the other half. Safest prehab in the block. But there's some not so lucky. Slipped through the cracks. Look between the blocks, behind the main streets. You find the cardboard city. The dispossessed, the homeless. Now they can't get medical benefits, official documents etc without a proper address. Some of them have a few valuables they want to keep safe, can't leave them on the streets. So I rents boxes to a few of them. They can leave stuff in them, or even use them as postal addresses, all sorts"
"So it was one of them?"
"This is what I was trying to tell you. I rented a box to a Mr Smith, scruffy, down on his luck. Only the boxes are DNA keyed to customer. Makes them more secure. Personal. Once the key is matched only they can use it"
"So it was Mr Smith who had the package?"
"No not that Mr Smith. Another one!"
"Sorry you're loosing me again."
"I rented the box to one of the homeless guys. He had all the right documentation, ID etc, for Mr Smith."
"You check it on presentation?"
"No I don't need to, it's all scanned as you come in. That slightly oversized door frame does all the works, all the frequencies plus infra and hi-sec. So you can't bring in dodgy cards, or or use hookey ID chips. So as far as I knew Mr Smith was on the level."
"So it was Mr Smith that had the package then"
"Look I don't remember him actually bringing anything in apart from the first time. it was just documents from what I could see."
"So when did the package arrive"
"That's the thing. All I remember is the smell. fishy. I asked Ken to check all his lockers but he said there was nothing in his. He cleans them out every month, disinfects them and all. Very professional, very hygienic.
It's just that about a month later some different homeless guy comes in and presents the lot again."
"Mr Smiths cards, and the key. Says he's an nephew, and his uncle has died, and gone and left him the lot. Not actually that much but the documents and the key. Say's it took him a bit of time to track down what the key belonged to."
"But the door would have warned you?"
"Yes the thing is wired real time into local law enforcement channels, partly for my protection but for the customers as well."
"Please spare me the sales pitch. Go on"
"Well that was it, Mr Smith junior presents the key, it's scanned as clean so I can only take his word for it. If he was lying then the cards at least would be all over the mesh as dodgy, but they had scanned clean. So I reset the key and he went straight to the locker and pulled out the box."
"That's when you saw it?"
"Well yes it sort of flopped out of the top. I don't think he realised I saw it."
"The tentacle?"
"Yes, that's when I gave the station a call, because of the news bulletins all over everything the other day. The Ceph kid."
"But did you actually see it?"
"Damn all you've really given me is the dead homeless guy murdered round the corner may, or may not, have been called Smith, but it's unlikely, and another homeless guy is now the same Mr Smith, and I’m no closer to the missing seph meta kid, or what these people want with her."
"Look Mr Rosenkitten I'm not even sure whether to thank you or just charge you with wasting police time."
"It's Rosenkvitten, and I thought there was some sort of reward."
"So far you've given me two bits of undistinguishable vid and the possibility that the kids in the cardboard city. Not a lot to go on. The kid could be light years away by now, or some ones lunch. I'll be in touch, we may work out some creds for the time."
With that the officer left and I haven't seen him since.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Writing And The Loss Of Love.

 [Short note: I found this in my "Drafts" folder, from about five years ago but decided to publish it as is]

I find myself yet again over burdened by the futility of life.
I'm watching a film about writers (“the tenants”), I'm watching a film about writers falling in love (the same film) with the same girl. I'm finding myself unmoved, but uncomfortable. Both by the aspect of love and the aspect of the writers. The main character is putting his life on hold for an eventuality (to use his phrase) “once I've finished my book!”
Recently I keep finding myself watching films, and plays, and other programmes about writers. Finding myself more and more depressed by them.
The reason I find this film disturbing is, on the one hand identifying with the writing aspect (if not in reversal), the other hand is not identifying with the love aspect.
Continuously through the film the main character is putting all aspects of his life on hold (as I mentioned to finish his book). Not being able to allow for any aspect of his life to change, lest it disturb his creative flow. He is the last tenant of a block of flats because he refuses to move as all other tenants have. I identify probably because I keep coming up with excuses as to how, and why, not to write. I identify with the dysfunctional aspect of not admitting it's me that is stopping me write, or committing to the writing.
I often talk about the long term study I am making of symbolism, and how people apply it to themselves, with particular emphasis on occult symbolism.
Why do I mention this?
On the love aspect, probably bolstered by the fact I've spent the afternoon watching detective programs (particularly Morse, and Frost). Who seem to be incredibly lonely and isolated, even dysfunctional, when it comes to women at least. As I watched the film all I felt at the romantic parts was a hollowness. I am beginning to think that perhaps it's another area of my life where I put things on hold for too long.
I think I am focusing on their dysfunction, and loneliness because that is how I'm beginning to feel myself. I'm seeking the similarity, and identifying with that which I am beginning to see is wrong with my life at the moment.
I have spent quiet a few years remaining conspicuously single on purpose. Mostly from the point of view that a relationship built from combined effort to combat problems, tends to fall apart once the opposition has been surmounted. Say if you spend years struggling to pay debts, or overcome money worries, once the problem is solved the bond in the relationship breaks down.
To this end, by my own particularly twisted little logic, I have spent years trying to get a reasonable job, decent money, and cover the mortgage without worrying too much. to this end I have avoided (apart from a couple of drunken indiscretions and what I can only describe as a very confusing period when I wasn't going out with someone, a sort of not relationship, funnily enough not the first not relationship I've been involved in) any sort of relationship, choosing to turn down any offers from friends or family to set me up with anyone.
It's this that is beginning to worry me. Perhaps I have spent too long alone to start actually feeling anything for anyone. I am beginning to feel further and further disassociated. I'm worried that I no longer know how to start the process again now that I feel I should.
OK it's back to my plain pasta (with black pepper and butter), and “Practical Magic” on the telly. Yet again (to quote Sandra Bullock) “at times my heart feels so empty, I'm sure if you put your ear to my chest you could hear the sea!”
If only magic were as simple as they portray it here. A quick rhyme, the throwing of some herbs, burn a candle and that's that. Sod all my preparation both physical and mental, drawing circles and incanting.
If only the “Buffy Wiccan” thing worked. I'll have a pinch of Eris, a little of Freya, spirit of the sky, spirit of fire, spirit of water, spirit of earth, a meeting of minds, a length of time, and a companion to hold.
I stil await the 
May all your gods smile upon you.

Collecting Things.

When I say I collect things I don't just mean the obvious. Not just the records (vinyl), or the CD's, DVD's, books, the Lego etc, that's obvious, but what I'm talking about is more ephemeral. Not just the people. One of the advantages of having worked so many places doing so many things (possibly a whole other post, or two, in that one theme there) giving me so many people from so many places, the vast depth and breadth of humanity suffering from delusions of their own competence (it still amazes me how badly people can fuck things up whilst still being totally convinced they are doing the right thing). What I think I'm really talking about (here, now) is the huge opportunity the mobile phone camera has given me. I can often be found taking pictures of what seem to be the most mundane things. Though I am enamoured with architecture and often will waste time taking pictures of buildings (Westminster tube station being one of my favourites) sometimes just because the light has changed, and is showing me another aspect of them. Here I am being particular. I have in my mind the construction of a vast space, most likely a space station. It is the minutae that draws me. The numbering of rooms in buildings. Doors and cupboards. The placing of posters on columns. Closed circuit cameras. Switching boxes, and wiring ducts. It's these pieces that makes a scene believable. it's the cheeky sticker on the escalator step that is just a picture of an electric plug socket, which is only seen when the stairs are running. Or the addition of some little phone number stuck on someone else’s poster.
So don't be surprised if you find me in some dark corner taking a picture of some old dusty fuse box, it's just another prop to the orbiting station I'm slowly building in my head.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Fifteen Minute Writer.

First I let me point you at this book:

The 15-Minute Writer: How To Write Your Book In Only 15 Minutes A Day Kindle Edition

One of the joys of my commute is the time I find available to read. I am now reading more than I probably have in the last twenty years (since I went to university). One of the most recent "books" (I put the phrase in inverted commas as I think it's only really a pamphlet pretending to be a book) is the one linked above. It proposes a schedule of fifteen minutes writing a day. I have already failed the schedule because I didn't write yesterday so am doing two fifteen minute sessions today.

So this is the first attempt. I have decided to revive the blog. So expext a bit more waffle here then.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Rubber - meekon5 - review.

Despite a name that caused some raised eyebrows in discussion at work the next day as I tried to describe the film, this film is a little gem.
Whilst at university I had the opportunity to extend a couple of interests of mine, namely philosophy and film studies as part of one of the modules of my degree.
I also have the pleasure of a group of friends who share my love and interest in films, but more on the "Shit Film Club" (of which I'm sure any number of variations exist) at some later time.
I mention this because we tend to play silly games where each of us are looking for more unusual (read bizarre) little obscure films.Especially knowing each others likes and dislikes. This films discovery (for my group of friends) is Pete's work.
At once post modernist, and surreal in turns. Without giving too much away there is a scene early on where a character seems to break the fourth wall and addresses the audience directly,only for the the camera to turn round afterwards to reviel an audience in the film that he has been addressing.
For a film that follows a tyre that develops psychotic tendencies and goes on a killing spree.
Not a film for everybody, but a good film if you can take the surrealism, and the flip flop of dipping in and out of Post Modernism.

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