Saturday, 8 June 2019

We Are All Nervous


.. to some extent. After finishing "Norse Mythology" by Neil Gaiman, I've picked up "Notes on a Nervous Planet" by Matt Haig. This sort of follows on from his "Reasons To Stay Alive" which addressed how he dealt with his depression, and the book really helped a sadly missed great friend of mine Craig Puranen Wilson who was one of the most positive people that I have met it my life but also dealt with his own demons while helping so many others.

I read "Reasons To Stay Alive" on a train journey down to London for my friend Paul Campbell's 50th Birthday, it took me just three hours and I started thinking "I shouldn't be giving this as a birthday present" and finished thinking what an absolutely brilliant, uplifting and hopeful book. I think I could do the same with "Notes on a Nervous Planet" but am not on a three hour train journey, but it has started very well.

"Notes on a Nervous Planet" posits that anything can make us worried or nervous and how we can deal with that. A lot of that can be answered by the answer to the question:

"Am I in Control Of This?"

If we are we are usually Ok, but it's when we are dependent on things that are out of our control that the worry bomb starts ticking. Today I parked up a hire car rented from Enterprise  to pick up something from the Post Office (a clear vinyl copy of the first Faust album) . If the car gets damaged I am liable for £1,000 excess so that is always on my mind, and it doesn't have to be my fault , and a combination of an idiot parking me in (he was on double yellows) and another one pulling out of a side road without looking could have caused me to be in an accident. I waited til everything was clear so there was no accident but the nervousness was there while it was still a possibility.

Though to put things in context when I was was coming up the A19 in driving rain, I was not worried at all but just wanted to get home, and really , you would think that would be when an accident might happen, and therefore I should be worried, but if you were that worried you probably couldn't drive. You need to have confidence in yourself.

So again , I wasn't going to write anything today but things just trigger something, and given the subject it has to be the opening song from Side 2 of my favourite Alice Cooper album "Killer" , "You Drive Me Nervous". Legend has it that Vincent Furnier changed his name to Alice Cooper after a 17th Century Witch (You probably can find one) but the name was chosen because it sounded wholesome, normal and at odds with the band's raison d'etre.

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