Midnight is my Friend

Here I am again, sitting in front of the computer in the dead of night, only too aware that I haven’t posted for several days. The world just seems to be getting away from me at the moment – I’m not sure if I’m just trying to be involved in too many things, or if I’m not pedalling fast enough.

I can’t help reminding myself of a message I’ve seen written by several friends recently – that it’s ok not to chase your own tail – that it’s ok to say no – that there is value in slowing down.

There are so many things I want to do though. I end up laughing at myself – I have always been my own worst enemy.

Last night we went out to a fund-raiser at the infant school where my other half works – propping up the “staff table”. It was supposed to be a quiz, but involved little or no knowledge. One of the rounds involved identifying the flavour of jelly beans. On the way home I opined that this is the future – whether we like it or not. Generations are coming through where the majority seem to have have no knowledge about anything much in the world. If they haven’t seen something on Facebook, Tiktok, or their friends haven’t texted them about it, they have no clue. The traditional subjects – history, geography, science, nature, art – you may as well be asking them to write out the equations of motion.

One particular table at the fund raiser stunned us by leaving a considerable amount of rubbish, empty bottles and food wrappers strewn across their table and the floor when they left. Because of course we were there to clean up after them. What is it with some people thinking the rest of the world is there to serve them? How conceited are they?

While walking home – furious with the many small slights that had mounted up throughout the night – I had to remind myself that none of it really mattered. Less than half a world away, a catastrophe is being discovered – with evidence that the retreating army of a superpower have massacred civilians en-masse.

I will admit that in recent weeks I’ve wondered what the point of it all is – this life thing – when you could be cut down tomorrow. Why do we strive, hope, dream, or even attempt to build when a hostile adversary can invade, kill, and destroy with wanton abandon? How do soldiers of any army reconcile their actions? How do they live with what they have done? Can people really be conditioned to such an extent that they become machines without conscience ? Sadly experience of conflict around the world seems to tell me they can.

Suddenly the method I use to get from one day to the next seems like a good one – putting one foot in front of the other. When the world seems a little too big, and a little too loud, concentrating on putting one foot in front of the other works well. It gets me from today to tomorrow – and tomorrow it will get me to the next day.

The real trick is finding somebody to walk alongside while finding my way from today to tomorrow. I’m lucky enough to count several such people in my sort-of-secret group of far flung friends on the internet. We might not message each other every day, but when we do, the world becomes a little bit smaller, and a little bit easier to survive.

5 replies on “Midnight is my Friend”

One foot in front of the other is an excellent tactic, provided you glance up occasionally to check your direction :).
We are surrounded by noise and fog so it takes effort and intelligence to do that.


You’re making a huge assumption that people care about more than themselves. There are periods of generosity where that is true, but our stories are all so different that many–as you so cleverly pointed out–don’t know squat past what they see on social media. Doing today is always a great place to start. You can’t impact tomorrow because you don’t know what it brings. I could throw spiritual truths at you, but I think those would frustrate you. Life isn’t fair. Ever. That’s one of the toughest lessons I’ve ever learned. You can do this. Give yourself space to think.

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It might not be convincing enough but I get from one day to the next thinking science couldn’t have evolved so much without far.
And while, in a war many people shove their emotions aside to kill other people, I wonder if any civilisation in any war has completely eradicated another one? Not I think. Some slaves were taken, children adopted, some people went into hiding but one way or another some parts of their culture remained and eventually morphed with the rest of the world. The discovery of the catastrophe can be depressing and it is, actually. But I think, it is what it is. We are born. We do our best. we let the next generation do their best while hoping enough of us survive. Could survival of the fittest and the course of evolution not be correlated to wars? I don’t know. At least it’s enough to make it to the next day. If we dismissed the point of it all, then we would leave no legacy behind. Good or bad, we need to be doing something. Let’s hope that most of us end up doing good than the bad though..
oh that reminds me, of this other thing, I read
Good things and bad things happen because things happen. I wonder if I can somehow use this also to comfort myself from a day to the next. Nah. I think it is my driving force

As for the kids, I loved reading how well you understand the restricted intellect of students. I have been lucky to get students that are hungry for knowledge and even more for discussions. And if not, I gift them a book by Dr. Feynman and that gives them some sort of start 😀

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